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In the episode "Molt Down" Rarity's ears became clogged by some effect of Peewee's feathers. But in season 1 and 3 "A bird in the Hoof" and "Just for Sidekicks", Celestia's pet Philomena didn't seem to have any effect on anypony including giving Fluttershy one of her feathers, and we don't see much but a few pictures of Peewee as a baby phoenix with Spike and Twilight. The possible reasons as of to why is: 1. Maybe there is a difference between wild and domesticated phoenixes, that wild phoenixes need to defend (themselves, eggs, nest, family, etc) and therefore develop genes as a defence where domesticated don't, Peewee for being so young when Spike returned him to his family didn't have as much time being with Spike compared to being in the wild with his family. 2. Another is that Rarity might be allergic to them. It might be a very rare allergy (pun not intended) which is why we have never herd of it until now except for Zecora. And both could clear what Zecora said "Ah, the feathers of that bird can affect ponies' ears", the keyword being "can" as though it possible to but not 100% that it will. 3. One other that might explain Philomena but not Peewee is that Celestia might have some kind of spell on Philomena to have her feathers not have an effect on ponies.
Welcome, one and all, to the season three wrap-up of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic! I know what some of you are thinking. Didn't you just write a review like 9 and a half minutes ago? Yes, and I'm glad you're able to count. Anyways, I figured, since "Keep Calm and Flutter On" was supposed to be uploaded last Friday but was cut short by my modem committing suicide, that this entry should at least be uploaded as scheduled. So here we are, and there you are, and we are all together. So we're dealing with the last three episodes of the third season. Let us see what the epic conclusion holds in store. This, is "Just for Sidekicks". Spoilers ahead! - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - So this episode opens up with a panning shot of several pictures indicating that Spike had let Peewee free. I know that sounds like a dick joke....and that's because it is. However, it was that phoenix Spike caught in "Dragon Quest" that I complained was useless. Nice to see the other writers telling Merriwether to fuck herself. Anyways, Spike is baking a jewel cake, but he can't control himself so he eats all the gems before he can bake them. Oh gee, now Spike's able to bake? Wouldn't that've been useful in "Spike at Your Service", when he was magically bad at baking for a day? After the title sequence gives me very little reasons to live, Fluttershy shows up offering gems in return for watching over Angel while she and the other five crack-addicts venture off to the welcoming of the head of the Equestria Games in the Crystal Empire. Ohhh yeah, this is the beginning of that arc. I'd be careful around Spike if I were him. We all know what happened to the last guy. It's at this point that Spike gets greedy and starts thinking that if he can babysit the other five coke-snorters' pets, he'll receive even more gems in return. It's also at this point that bigoted fans criticize the writing of this episode because Spike is being greedy again.......even though it's an established part of his character. Oh well, can't please everyone so you've gotta jerk yourself off instead. So he goes around Ponyville collecting all the pets of the mane six so he can receive his gem payments. However, things get a little wild because Spike doesn't know how to take care of pets. To top things off, Angel has escaped Spike's grasp! He dun goofed, and because I've backtraced it, we'll have to report this to the cyberpolice. Not to worry, though, since he made his way to the CMC's treehouse. When Spike gets his hands on Angel, consequences will never be the same!! Spike sees opportunity when the CMC baby Angel like a little bitch, so he manipulates them into taking care of the pets by saying they might get a pet-sitting cutie mark. However, the CMC one-up him by asking for a jewel in return to buy beds, food, and toys for the pets. Uh................what? Jewels...aren't currency. They're easily found mere inches in the ground, and they're considered food by many species. It's like trying to buy a car with a tomato. Alas, Spike gives them the smallest of his six jewels. However, the CMC fuck up hard and he's forced to take back the pets at the cost of that jewel. And this is only the tip of the iceberg, as Zecora relieves him of one to teach him not to be greedy/prevent another "Secret of My Excess". Shortly thereafter, Granny Smith takes one for...some reason, but shit heats up when Angel hops on the next train to the Crystal Empire. Spike chases after him, but the conductor says he needs chaperones and incentive. Respectfully, the CMC and another jewel. Seriously?! Even the train conductor accepts gems?! I'm fucking done. At this point, I wouldn't be surprised if the CMC themselves were acceptable currency in Ponyville. Spike hops on in hopes to snag Angel and jump off before the train leaves, but this isn't the case. Instead, the CMC, Spike, and all six pets get caught in the chugger to the drug-lord's paradise. Maybe the CMC can get their cutie marks in cooking crystal meth. After the pets fuck up a donut cart, Spike is forced to fork over one more gem, leaving him with the single jewel Fluttershy gave him. Soon after, they arrive at the Crystal Empire (which is farther away than Canterlot and didn't take more than a day to travel to...."MMMystery on the Friendship Express"...), and the CMC are antsy to get out and look around. Spike does his best to keep the wild children, the rabbit with separation anxiety, and the rest of the roudy animals under control and not let loose out in the Crystal Empire, but to no avail. Angel's on his way to fuck Fluttershy in the ass with his monstrous dick, which is made easy by the mane six getting ready to board the same train back to Ponyville. Unfortunately, Spike uses his last jewel to throw at a buckle, which unbuckles a tower of luggage in a cart, blocking Angel's path to Fluttershy. Gotta catch 'em all. The gang briskly rush back to the train, but are met with more panic when the mane six join them in the same car, forcing all ten of them to hide under the seats. When Angel threatens to kick Applejack's seat and blow their cover, Spike cracks and says he deserves it for neglecting the pets and only caring about his own selfish desires. He displays regret for not being a good enough leader for the pets, and expresses intriguing remorse for his greed. It's welcoming to see Spike learn his own lesson rather than it being taught to him a la "Spike at Your Service". In return, Angel retrieves the gem that Spike through at the luggage for him to eat, making amends with his enemy for the episode. When the train finally reaches Ponyville, the CMC, Spike, and pets jump out the caboose with slick stealth and pretend to have met them at the station. And as they say....owls well that ends well. Shipping #6,850 confirmed. And so concludes "Just for Sidekicks". --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- My memory might be a bit faulty considering I don't have a list of all the Spike episodes.....but... Is this the first good Spike episode? I mean, I know it's popular to hate this episode as much as the others, but the only real flaw in this one is the fact that jewels are treated as a currency. Granted, I do think that's a big enough flaw to deduct major points considering even Twilight claimed at the end to want to eat a jewel cake, but everything else about the episode seemed fine. Spike has a greedy side, and there's no getting around it. However, it seems that with this episode, they brought that character trait full circle by actually having him learn from it rather than to "outgrow" it or whatever. One complaint for this episode I know is "SpikeAbuse", which is a cop-out complaint I fucking hate in general. Characters need to overcome hardships in order to be interesting, and this is one of those cases. If you want everything to go easy for Spike, you're gonna have an even shittier episode than you started out with because it would be boring as fuck. Here, he does overcome his hardships and learns a really well-deserved lesson from it, resulting in grade A development for Spike. All that said, I'm going to give this episode a 7/10 out of fairness since one of the major plot threads really didn't make sense, but I still relatively enjoyed this episode in the end. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Hmmm, the quality of episodes do seem to be improving since "Keep Calm and Flutter On". However, there's only two more episodes, so we'll just have to see how well these final pieces fit into the puzzle. Join me next Friday when we continue the season three crap-up! .... Dammit, these outros need more crude jokes. Quickly, find the most vile, disgusting, and vomit-inducing thing in all the world! THERE we go. Now that I've given you all nightmares, have a happy Black Friday.
Corey Powell (the newest writer at the time) started off splendidly in the factually fantastic Sleepless in Ponyville, developing Scootaloo’s character as well as Scootaloo’s relationship with Rainbow Dash, and it was her turn again in Just for Sidekicks. The idea of Spike petsitting the Mane Six’s pets was great and better with the the Cutie Mark Crusaders' randomness. Unfortunately, JfS contains one of the biggest flaws in the series: the incapability to characterize Spike consistently as a main character. Just like Owl's Well that Ends Well and Spike at Your Service, his characterization and character development are tossed out the window. Various strengths include: "Don't have your cake and it, too" was the main moral in this episode, but it was cleverly hidden in the canon despite the fact that it was in your face since the beginning. Instead of telling the moral, it was progressively shown in several basic steps. Show, don't tell. The Cutie Mark Crusaders were brilliant. In her two episodes, they were written really well with intact, three-dimensional characterization. Sweetie Belle was cute as usual, and both Apple Bloom and Scootaloo are eager yet still different to where they're not carbon copies of each other. The pets were absolutely great. Previously, the pets (minus some exceptions) tended to appear once or twice and then forgotten. This was the episode where they all shone, from Winona to Owlowiscious to Gummy to lovable Tank to the Angel from hell (who played his role as antagonist while not going overboard — and with good reasons — unlike his out-of-character behavior in Putting Your Hoof Down). There's extremely dedicated kinship between the Mane Six and their pets. From the way they talked and behaved with their pets, it's obvious that they're extremely close. The cutest was Rainbow Dash and Tank and how Dash tried to hide it in her typical tomcoltish fashion. Cute and funny. Angel's extreme suspicions with Spike. Since the beginning of the episode, he obviously didn't like the way Spike was handling himself and did whatever he could to embarrass the hell out of him and show to the Mane Six that he only took care of their pets for his own greed. The little tidbits of Spike having to release Peewee back where he belongs. Through the pictures, Peewee was a great and troublesome little phoenix, yet still meant well. I'm glad he's back with his parents, but it's a little disappointing and unfortunate that we may likely never see him in the series again. (I hope FIM brings him back someday.) The concept of the episode was simple, but fits the scope of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic very well. The background ponies are back again, which is good because without background characters, regardless of the beautiful graphics, the atmosphere is dead. With them showing up, it gave Ponyville, the Friendship Express, and Crystal Empire station life. The world of MLP:FIM needs that to engage itself to the audience. The pace was so smooth here. It flowed from one scene to the next without any need to rush, a role reversal from Keep Calm and Flutter On, Spike at Your Service, Games Ponies Play, Magical Mystery Cure, and Equestria Girls. Just like Keep Calm and Flutter On, there were layers of foreshadowing throughout to hint where the episode would travel and resolve. Four big clues include the cake, Angel’s attitude, Spike giving away the jewels one by one, and Zecora warning him in her usual rhyming self to not lust for his delicious jewels. Hey, look! Spike’s ability to cook was back! Unfortunately, his continuous appetite for jewels bit him… Thankfully, unlike his out-of-character incompetence in Spike at Your Service, he actually wasn’t aloof, careless, or stupid in handling things. He knew right away he messed up and decided to fix it. Unfortunately, there are three key problems. Fluttershy was out of character in the beginning. While it made sense for her (and the others) to exchange gems to Spike in exchange for him petsitting, the way she did it was very off-putting: the transparent way she manipulated and convinced him to petsit Angel. Keep Calm’s method of manipulating Discord into eating his own words was extremely intelligent, clever, and hidden. It was a great twist. Here, it was very inorganic. If the approach was softer and didn’t intentionally tug Spike’s greed, then it might’ve gotten somewhere. Equestria’s geography and sense of time (from a writing perspective) are very disorganized (a common issue in the series), and there is no railway realism. The Crystal Empire and Ponyville are presumably separated by at least several hundred miles. From the way the script was written, the trip lasted a couple of hours to the Empire and then back, as it was still daylight out there. No saddle tank engine (especially one that size) would travel this far for this long without a stop at the station, switch of trains, and visit to the water tower to fill up the tank and/or coal hopper to refill the bunker. And the train ride would definitely not make a round trip this quickly within a day, either. Spike himself was completely unrecognizable. Just like Spike at Your Service, the Spike featured on the screen in JfS wasn’t Spike, but rather an imposter. Besides his ability to cook and grouse after realizing he wasn’t invited to the Equestria Games, his characterization and development from the rest of series were nonexistent. Instead of being completely careless in every single thing he did like in Spike at Your Service, this drastic bastardization in his character shifted to the other side of the scale. He was greedy, selfish, and manipulative; he didn't care about the pets at all. Instead of a balance between selfishness and selflessness throughout, it was segregated, with his selfishness used as a headache-inducing comedic plot device for almost the entire episode until the very end. He took advantage of his friends (as well as their trust for him) and used their pets as pawns to make his jewel cake. In season two, the two episodes starring him included two huge facets that helped him grow into a much more selfless character: a. In Secret of My Excess, we saw how much greed in a dragon can consume his or her soul. Spike since learned about the dangers of greed. b. In Dragon Quest, Spike wanted to find his own in the dragon world, so he joined the migration, where he bumped into some very antagonist, one-dimensional teenaged dragons. But here, he also learned about how precious life and caretaking were when he refused to destroy the phoenix egg. He wasn't going to give in to peer pressure from other dragons. Even in his short time, it's obvious he cared so much for Peewee. It's particularly the absence of his development from Dragon Quest where there was such a big problem here. He wasn't going to sacrifice anyone's lives for the sake of sticking with the clan. But he also knew that being someone's caretaker required massive responsibilities, and Spike is someone who can hold his own despite messing up occasionally. For example, in Magic Duel, he was the one who kept the team together while Twilight was exiled in the Everfree Forest. It was a small scene quantitatively, but it gave him so much depth in his character. Here, he showed no care for the pets at all, a complete contradiction of Dragon Quest's resolution/moral and his affection and love for Peewee himself. This is a task that requires so much trust, and Spike give no damn about what they were thinking until the very end. He came across as antagonistic, making him an unlikeable, out-of-character shell. Even with a jewel cake that he would so love to bake, he knows very well that petsitting is a heavy responsibility, particularly at this stage of the series. What an in-character Spike would REALLY do is put the cake business beside him and take care of the pets while they're gone. And he (and maybe Owlowiscious) would be the ones disciplining the pets, especially Angel, whose trust for Spike and the other pets are thinner and more fragile than the graphite of a mechanical pencil. He may retain those thoughts about the cake, which would create conflict, but he'll promise to himself that he'll take his time disciplining the pets and sacrifice his cake willingly. Once he's done, then maybe he'll get jewels as a reward, and maybe he can successfully bake his cake (attempting to taste a jewel, but warned by Owlowiscious before he does), or he chooses not to bake it voluntarily. That way, the moral of "don't have all of your cake and eat it, too" can still fit yet keep Spike in character. Frankly, this would have been much better if it were a season one or season two episode (pre-SoME or pre-DQ), where he wasn't given a lot of development and still had that extremely selfish streak in him. But it took place late in season three, and he received so much character development since the premiere. Therefore, it stuck out and just didn't fit him. This growth of his personality was absent in Just for Sidekicks. Spike is a character with several important roles in Season 3. Despite being minute, they helped him grow as a more mature character. To see that growth reversed in this season’s two Spike-centered episodes is a huge disappointment. It's an even bigger disappointment here because Powell is an excellent writer with Emmy Award nominations to her credit. I've seen her work, so she has the experience and wherewithal to do so great. Sleepless in Ponyville is one of the best episodes in the entire series and was an amazing debut. She showed exactly what she could do there and even here in many places. To see that potential fall flat with an out-of-character Spike in Just for Sidekicks is unfortunate. This was an episode with both a great concept and moral, and it was filled with so much potential. The Cutie Mark Crusaders and the pets were filled with character that resulted in plenty of laughs and conflict. But Spike was the focus in Just for Sidekicks, and he was extremely poorly written. One of the biggest reasons Spike at Your Service was bad was because he was written as carelessly incompetent, but even there did he show plenty of care for others. Here, his extreme selfishness and lust for a jewel cake were a sudden flip of his character development, and he didn't behave like Spike one damn bit. Overall, the third-worst episode in Season 3 and my most hated FIM episode overall.
I know that in "Just For Sidekicks", Spike wasn't invited to the Equestria Games at the Crystal Empire eventhough he did help save it from King Sombra. Can anybody provide some good theories as to why he wasn't invited?