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Found 5 results

  1. In the episode It isn't the mane thing about you only Rarity's mane and tail get removed by the remover potion she used on herself but her white coat wasn't removed in any way why is that I didn't see any of her skin why do you think that is and why did Rarity only mention her mane the whole time and not her tail I mean her tail looked just as bad so it was worth mentioning
  2. Josh Haber extended his résumé quite a bit since joining FIM back in Season 4. During that time, he published and edited a combination of the good, the bad, and the average. He wrote really good episodes like Re-Mark and Bloom & Gloom, yet edited Season 6, the worst of the series, and helped write To Where and Back Again, FIM’s worst finale. For most of Season 7, he was absent while working on another show. One week ago, he made his return joining the Lady Writers as editor for Daring Done? In his first written episode since To Where, Haber showed his growth and wrote Season 7’s most surprising amethyst. Strengths: Colorful characters. Ponyville’s charm comes from its cast. With the tertiary and background characters, Mane is no exception. Just about every character in this episode is very likeable. Filthy Rich in his desire to find the right flower bouquet for his Spoiled wife. Mr. Breezy and Davenport in trying to improve customer service and sales. The flower trio using Rarity’s advice to select and sell bouquets easier. Townsponies weren’t only interested in listening to Rarity’s advice, but also receptive to each other. It feels like the town actually likes each other and wants to help one another. Pay attention very closely to two very clever continuity nods in the background. As the flower trio sold out, Granny and Grand Pear were next door in the booth the entire time, cluing those who watched The Perfect Pear they put the past and feud behind them permanently. In the beginning shot, look very closely: Apple Bloom and Burnt Oak conversing. >BM and Sugar Belle… Seriously, good to see the show continue building the relationship after a massive screwup. One of the ponies to catch my eye most was Daisy and how receptive and kind she was to Rarity the entire time. Only a few episodes ago, she and Diamond Cutter denigrated her behind her back and was part of the anti-Rarity boycott. It was one of the most out-of-character moments of the entire show, ’cause this normally sweet pony bashed a supposed friend. Here, it’s like none of that happened, and everything returned to normal. Thank Mama Celestia! However, the background characters share their role. Fluttershy, Dash, AJ, TS, SG, and Zecora do, too, in their own ways. Zecora: Over the years, she has appeared very sporadically, sometimes only making two appearances for an entire season. In her first speaking appearance since Re-Mark, she clearly points out which item is which. True, Zecora could’ve labeled them, but the conflict and accident aren’t her fault whatsoever and, thus, not a flaw in the episode at all. She pointed with her hoof which is the shampoo and which is the remover potion. Rarity’s accident caused the mix-up. Telling Rarity to conclude Act 2 she can’t brew a potion in time is a breath of fresh air, particularly in a show where magic’s sometimes considered the be-all end-all. To conclude Act 2 or the episode as a whole with Zecora saying she got one available right now would be as anticlimactic as Dragon Quest. Fluttershy, RD, and AJ: Like any good friend, they try fixing Rarity’s mane as a last resort. Each of their choice for wig works, because they’re familiar with the items they share with her: tree leaves, cloud moisture, and straw. Rarity desperately wants to be in the photo shoot, but can’t with her mane so messy, and with their last resort being a failure, it leads to Rarity having to cancel. Why does this work? Because they’re doing whatever they can to help her. Their wig creations are intended to help Rarity, and both she and the audience get it. Twilight & Starlight: They, too, tried their best to help. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Although there was a clever callback to Re-Mark: More about them a little later. Of the RM7, the character that got my attention the most was Applejack. Over the past few seasons, when they communicate, it’s if they can’t stand each other rather than the opposite (Made in Manehattan exempt). Here, after Rarity sulked to the point of downing tubs of ice cream, AJ turned on the light and had enough. This is exactly who she should be: honest to the point of saying the uncomfortable truth, yet do so because she cares for her. Now, a good episode doesn’t require background ponies to be involved in the episode. But when done right, it makes Ponyville feel more like a town and community. It does that here. Rarity. It ain’t a good episode if the star isn’t written well. She was written well here. Every line she spoke oozed with personality: confident, sassy, vain, unsure, hopeless, upset. She reacted to specific situations she was involved in, whether it’s having super-sticky string bound to her body, accidently applying remover potion on her mane, and so forth. One criticism I noticed of this episode from an analyst is he called the salesponies in the town dumb for not recognizing Rarity under her black cloak. There’s a problem with the argument. Rarity completely covered her entire body aside from her hooves and face with a large cloak. When Rose tried to peak underneath, Rarity shyly refused from fear of ostracization and embarrassment. A few times, she pulled her hood down, once after opening Mr. Breezy’s door and as she headed to Davenport’s auction, possibly to keep her identity hidden. By how the episode was structured, Rarity apparently looked forward into taking part of Vanity Mare and Photo Finish’s photoshoot. How long? Not stated. Although you can guess it was scheduled well in advance. Her self-assurance was obvious throughout the opener by how she used her mane proudly during the three scenes. Being no shortage of ego, it ain’t a surprising for her to flash or focus her proud locks. The accident was so sudden and so close to the date of the shoot that she was desperate in trying anything to fix it. Borrow a Crystal Pony’s glass-like mane, mask it with a beautiful dress, use a cloud or straw, have Zecora quick-brew a potion to revert the mane to its original state. When her wig options dried out, she was forced to cancel her shoot, which she longed planned for and visibly upset her. From all the buildup and the RM4 worrying about her wellbeing, her iconic meltdown isn’t treated as a joke. Her disappointment and sadness are real. Nothing is exaggerated. Consider this: If by chance you lose your hair through some kind of accident before some kind of important event, how would you feel? It makes sense in Rarity’s character to be so upset. Good for DHX and Haber to treat her situation seriously. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade! Getting back to Starlight and Twilight, some lines grabbed my attention: How significant are these lines? Very. A magical boundary within this world is established. It doesn’t matter how rich the world of ponies is. Without rules, you arbitrarily pull solutions out of your basket. Worldbuilding is fun, but it’s equally important to sit back and cut off possible shortcuts. Look no further than Twilight having only a few minutes to become one with a book and griffons never getting cutie marks. Twilight, Starlight, and Zecora (from earlier) inform and remind her that magic doesn’t come out of thin air. You need something of substance to create the magic. Rarity’s mane is so shredded and damaged by Zecora’s remover potion that re-growing her mane with magic’s even riskier. So, what about the mustache and poison joke? The mustache temporarily grows above the lip. At some point, it either disappears or falls off. Rarity pleaded to grow her mane back to what it used to be as a permanent solution. Rarity’s mane and tail were fully grown when the poison joke made dreadlocks out of her fur and hair. With most of her violet hair missing, there’s no guarantee if she’ll be poisoned the same way. Once more, the poison is temporary; a bath reverts the joke. Mane sticks to their established guidelines of Equestrian magic. Like Zecora’s quick brew, finding a spell to revert the potion’s effects is anticlimactic and contrived, neither of which this episode needs. More importantly, they set up the platitude expressed by AJ and FS: Older than time, but its truism helps circulate it and not expire. Rarity is one such pony capable of turning around a worst-case scenario. Just two questions: How can she overcome this horrific problem, and what can her friends do to help her? Twilight answers the latter: With Rarity at her lowest point in a few years, comforting her makes sense. This trek commences this conversation chain, including feeling guilty for canceling her photoshoot and believing to be a fad the entire time, her friends reminding her of the goals she accomplished, and Twilight nudging a lesson of self-confidence to get by her difficult situation. Here, we’re reminded of one important detail: Throughout Act 2, she assumed that ponies looked at her differently because her mane is missing. Again, that’s not true. Everyone she came across knows her for her pizzazz, ability to help others, and inherent command for attention. How big of an ego does the Element of Generosity have? Really big. Yet, they never ostracized her for not being pretty. She isolated herself and desired to blend in, an act they see as out of character of her if they knew it was her. Rarity was so shy around the merchants that she refused attention. The townsponies weren’t acting like jerks at any point. So, with the barriers of what ponies can’t do with magic, Rarity’s desperation and depression, and their words of encouragement, what do you get? Three things: Reinvigoration of Rarity’s self-worth. Kickass Rari-punk mane. And one of the cleverest and smartest resolutions of the series. Although she canceled the shoot, her decision worked out for everyone. Rarity’s lavender order was left over, so Filthy was able to give his spoiled wife bouquets of her flowers for Mare’s Day. Mr. Breezy relocated his large fan outside his shop, allowing traffic to interact with it firsthand. Davenport’s chaise is sold. Everyone picked up the best possible. (Good for the show to have Rarity’s mane grow naturally.) Yet, if that wasn’t enough… Warm cup of karma. Although Rarity canceled the shoot, Photo Finish took pictures of her as she ventured through Ponyville, courtesy of her friends. Sure, this ending is sorta Hollywood-ish, but Rarity underwent a literal bad hair day and then attached her newfound look to spread goodwill to everypony that having her front and center of Vanity Mare magazine makes sense. Negotiating with Photo reinforces how much they care for Rarity and will do anything to make her feel better. Mane comes full circle with the ending. Good at what it doesn’t do! Back when I first heard about Mane, I was concerned. Coming to the episode, my two biggest fears were: Rarity’s worst personality trait reemerges: her judgmentalism. Occasionally, sound bites of prejudice spew out of her mouth, most notably her racism towards Zecora in Bridle Gossip. Witnessing one of the most groundbreaking characters in the series showing a prejudice to bald ponies would seriously damage her rep. An unfortunate implication of the story belittling cancer patients. How would that be represented? Rarity or any pony treating somepony bald or becoming bald differently than folks with a full mane. Ponyville treating Rarity differently for losing her hair. Magically growing her mane back after melting down for losing it. The idea of baldness as the worst possible thing. Neither happens. Her mane grows back naturally a few months later. Rather than vanity or prejudice, self-confidence during the heat of a sudden crisis is Mane’s overarching theme. Rarity assumes ponies will treat those without (good) manes differently. Instead, no one insults, shuns, or intentionally shames her. Self-embarrassment by her destroyed locks causes her to cloud her own judgment and believe her own livelihood is a lie. After Twilight reassures her that her lost mane shouldn’t destroy her self-worth, Rarity takes what should be the worst-case scenario into the best. Until here, Rarity’s confidence was never tested, and this plot rounds her character more. Credit to @Jeric for helping me provide info for this section. Weaknesses: Clean Up on Aisle 19! Every episode can use a cleanup, and Mane ain’t no exception. The dialogue can use some better editing and more varied vocabulary. How many times does the episode use the word “mane”? Forty-one. That’s way too much! Dash herself said the word “awesome” thrice. Varying the word choice and cutting down the repetition will allow the dialogue flow a bit more. If you ask me which bothers me more, it’s Dash’s “awesome.” These days, that word has become a catchall identification for her, when she’s more than capable of using others. At least, multiple ponies rather than just one used “mane”. The script’s repetitive vocabulary also made the moral of shining from the inside out really heavy. Saying it once as Rarity changed into Punk Rarity is fine. But to do it twice more pushes it. Shake off the excess. The opener takes too long to establish some level of conflict. Usually a minute long, the theme song doesn’t play until three minutes in. For a 22-minute episode, that’s excessive and slow. The message can begin more effectively by either rearranging the song’s placement — perhaps after ordering the lavender bouquets — or trimming some of the runtime in the market. Mane-ly forgotten. After Pinkie accidentally applied Zecora’s shampoo on Pound and Pumpkin Cake, the episode focused the entire time on Rarity. No mention of her at any point until a few minutes before the end. Considering she was the catalyst for the conflict, her absence left a gap in the story and felt like she was re-inserted to tie it all up. Nevertheless… Nice ‘do. Conclusion: Well, well, well, what a pleasant surprise. Out of every episode in the second half, this one worried me the most. Prior to Daring Done? (the episode preceding Mane), I was looking forward to DD more. Why? Blame the synopses. That said, the actual story is something very different. I’m really surprised by how I enjoy Mane more, Mane is (in over quality) better than DD?, and none of my fears came true. In Haber’s first story since co-writing To Where and Back Again, he shows his FIM touch. Rarity has easily one of her best appearances in quite a while. The rest of the mane cast is also well done, especially Applejack. Zecora’s first speaking appearance since Re-Mark brings her to the familiar role, yet at the same time showed how she can’t solve all problems. No background or tertiary character is a jerk, reviving and sticking true to that refreshing (albeit familiar) welcoming atmosphere the show proudly presents itself in. A guideline of magic was both established and stuck to, providing Rarity (and the episode itself) the opportunity to twist the story’s formula. Mission accomplished!
  3. It's always the ones you don't expect, isn't it? Last season, I was surprised to enjoy "28 Pranks Later," a fairly messy episode that was nonetheless made enjoyable by a handful of solid jokes and a decently creepy atmosphere. From the synopsis, it seemed likely to have a mean-spirited, vindictive tone, but unlike the similar "The Mysterious Mare-Do-Well," it used its plot as an excuse to have some funny visual gags and indulge in zombie tropes rather than wasting time humiliating Rainbow Dash for some anachronistic wrong. It was far from perfect, but it was the season's most pleasant surprise. "It Isn't the Mane Thing About You" is less funny than "28 Pranks Later," but it's every bit as surprising. Despite its inherently awkward premise, the episode almost entirely avoids cringe comedy, and while what gags it does offer are mostly pedestrian, the episode's story structure recalls the show's earliest seasons in a good way. This is a story which gives itself time to breathe, which allows itself to be simple but relatable, which seems to understand the show's original charms. If only it were funnier, it would feel like a genuine return to form. Still, this is surprisingly pleasant! When Rarity is being considered for the cover of a popular fashion magazine, she visits Pinkie Pie for event preparations just to find the latter celebrating the anniversary of the Cake kids' first sneeze. Much to her dismay, Rarity leaves this encounter with Silly String sticking to her mane, and the two visit Zecora in search of a natural cure. Zecora gives them one hair growth potion and one hair removal potion, but unfortunately Rarity grabs the wrong one and inadvertently destroys her hair even further. Lacking any way to instantaneously regrow hair, Rarity then needs to continue with her preparations while hiding her now-bald head. As said, this seems like prime territory for cringe comedy. It could have shown Rarity going to desperate lengths to get things done while hiding her head, and that would have been nearly unbearable. Instead, though, "It Isn't the Mane Thing About You" simply depicts Rarity attempting to get through a day of hair-related plans without any hair to show, and while she eventually descends into histrionics, the tone is surprisingly relaxed. At no point does she embarrass herself, and even when she's actively hiding her face, you never get the impression that it's particularly bothering anyone, and she never goes to excessive lengths to hide her identity. There's even things this episode gets right which many others don't. This is one of the most low-stakes stories we've had in a while, and as such, it can pace itself out more without feeling unfocused. Like an early season episode, the story revolves around a somewhat fantastical yet still mundane problem, and it builds on this main premise without over-complicating it or smothering it in superfluous elements. It still could have used a couple digressions, but overall the episode has comparatively relaxed pacing, which supplies a little bit of charm. In fact, "charming" is perhaps the best descriptor of the episode overall. Despite having a humour focus, it's somewhat sparse for jokes, relying a lot on inherently humorous situations, and that will always be subjective. Personally, I don't find Rarity awkwardly trying to get things done without being noticed all that funny, and most of the other situations are similarly mundane. Probably the most joke-dense scene in the episode is when Rarity tries to get Twilight and Starlight to magically fix her castle, but even then there's only one joke: each hair replacement is transported from somewhere else, and quickly falls apart. It's all very mild humour, and while there's nothing wrong with that, it's not terribly exciting. At the same time, there's a lot of small pleasant moments. It's nice to see Pinkie throwing a party for the Cake babies, it's nice to see Rarity's friends trying to help, and it's nice to see Zecora again. Rarity's plight is too simple to be particularly interesting, and at times she comes across as slightly self-absorbed, but everyone around her is written on top form, even if they're never called upon to do much. Pinkie's the only one who does as much as Rarity, and while her antics are a little familiar this she has a few funny scenes, like one early on where she reacts to Zecora trying to nag her. Even Starlight isn't so bad this week, as for once her bluntness actually stands out as a unique trait. She's still superfluous, seemingly present just for a weak reference to the season 5 finale, but here she at least mostly stays out of the way. Really, the worst part is the cold open, which goes on for three endless minutes of clumsy foreshadowing before the theme song kicks in. Thankfully, each scene is a little improved from the last, and by the time the episode returns to Ponyville's market street, the shaky parts of the first half have all but vanished. This is especially true of the episode's wonderful ending, starting when Rarity enlists Rainbow Dash, Fluttershy, and Applejack for help. The funniest scenes in the entire episode come from these three trying to give Rarity a makeshift wig: Applejack's is attached to a bonnet, Rainbow's is made of clouds, and Fluttershy's is assembled out of shrubbery by her animal friends. In each case, the issue is obvious, but it leads to the sight of Rarity leaving her cloud wig behind when she walks away, which has got to be worth something. Finally, she cancels her photo shoot, and her friends stop by to break her out of her funk. In particular, it's nice to see Applejack being stern without coming across as rude or inflexible, and seeing Rainbow act primarily out of compassion without a note of egotism is incredibly refreshing even if she doesn't have much to do. Finally, Rarity's friends remind her of how much she's accomplished and how much she means to them, which encourages her to make the most of the situation. In the episode's denouement, Rarity combs what remaining hair she has into a makeshift mohawk, complete with multicoloured dye and a studded jacket, and it looks fantastic. In the cold open, Rarity inspired a few fashion shops to offer new services, and in the middle we see her unable to make use of them because she's hiding her face. Finally, in the ending, we get to see her doing a little more to help out around town. She gives Filthy Rich her leftover flowers, provides some further advice for a local fan store, and... uh... buys a new couch. Okay, that last one fits less, but it's a nice moral: all you need is a little confidence, and you can still be the best version of you in a bad situation. Even when all your plans are ruined, you can still make the best of what you have. Plus, the episode goes out with Rarity saving Pinkie from an overflowing bubble bath, so that's a plus, and Rarity even gets on the magazine cover anyway due to her friends pulling a few strings. Altogether, this ending is filled with delights. In many ways, "It Isn't the Mane Thing About You" demonstrates My Little Pony finally regaining an understanding of what once made it work. In tone, story structure, and characterization, this episode recalls the show's best years, and while the conflict and jokes still need a lot of work to reach those heights, there's a lot to like here. At worst, it's watchable and inoffensive, and at best it's as charming as anything else this season, and that's a lot more than I can say for many other episodes. So, again, it's not unlike "28 Pranks Later": decidedly flawed and occasionally boring, but with way, way more charm than I would ever have expected. It's always nice to be pleasantly surprised by this show. Score: Entertainment: 6/10 Characters: 7/10 Story: 6/10 Themes: 7/10 Overall: 65/100 You can find more episode reviews at my offsite blog.
  4. As should be VERY evident in this thread, the fandom artist community pretty much exploded after this episode Good evening everypony, and welcome back to another edition of "Batbrony Reviews"! First of all, apologies for getting this review out so late. Just been having trouble making time for it over the last few days on account of a whole lot of exciting real life stuff that's been happening. But that will be saved for another day, for now, onto the episode itself! Without further ado, this is "It Isn't the Mane Thing About You." So first things first, I just have to say that this was an odd duck of an episode. Like, not a bad one, far from it. In fact in execution this is a perfectly good episode, and in tone very much in the same vein as predecessors from Season 1 or Season 2 of the show. But that said, what did stand out to me as apparent was the fact that this was a Season 7 subject in an episode executed like a Season 1 or Season 2 episode, and that threw me for a bit of a loop. Unlike last week's episode, this is not so much a bad or disappointing thing as simply an odd thing to ponder. I cannot help but find myself asking "What if this episode had been executed differently?" and in fact will do just that at the end of the review. But for now, let's delve into what we got here. To start, Rarity kicks ass here, and I don't just say that because of the end. This was undoubtedly a Season 7 Rarity performance; while the character has never been completely self-obsessed or shallow I cannot help but think that if this episode had debuted in Season 1, she would have displayed far less grace or restraint in how she handled things than she did here. Instead, we got a Rarity who, while more than understandably upset at her predicament, did not come across as particularly shallow at any point; if anything, we actually readily understood how being unable to fix such a situation could truly devastate her without it feeling forced. Rarity doesn't just put a premium on maintaining good looks to make herself feel better, she does it to make an impression on ponies both in her own dealings as well as when she's lending a helping hoof to them, as evidenced by the opening scene of this episode where she's going around town lending assistance to various businesses and establishments. This does have a practical effect in that, well, without sounding too shallow, if there's one thing folks love more than practical-minded people, it's practical-minded people who look radiant. Politicians like John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Barack Obama, etc. all had good looks and distinct images, and this applies to business as well. A great example that comes to mind is who will folks always associate as the face of Apple, Jobs or Wozniak? Jobs of course, and not just because he was the better PR guy and knew how to connect to what customers wanted, but because eventually he developed a distinct image that, while not Hollywood-handsome, was its own kind of handsome within the Silicon Valley world. Point is, Rarity looking good isn't just something that she shallowly does to make herself feel better; at this point, it's simply a part of who she is and how she carries herself about, and there's nothing really wrong with that. She doesn't think she's better than other ponies because of it, she doesn't really even flaunt it, she just enjoys looking fabulous and using that part of herself to help others try to realize their own potential to be fabulous in their own ways. When you're just having one of "those" days This makes her reaction to losing most of her mane more than believable, even if some of her bits during her most panicky moments are hilarious. She doesn't just focus on getting it back (even if that is her top priority), she really does try to go about her business as well but just finds at first that she can't. She also doesn't blame Zecora or Pinkie Pie, and tries to have as much of a stiff upper lip as she can. Let's also consider that this isn't just something Rarity would freak out about; she may freak out more than most would, but evidently losing one's mane or tail is something that most ponies dread and understand magic can't fix easily, if at all. Even her sadness is, eventually, oddly subdued; normally we'd expect to see Rarity having a grand and fabulously over-the-top display of drama when she's especially feeling low, but here her lowest point is Rarity just... well, not being Rarity. She truly feels at that moment like she's not her true self, and can't even muster the ability to lament her current state as grandly as she normally would. That was a nice, subtle touch and Tabitha St. Germain's handling of the subdued, restrained Rarity in that moment was very effective. The ending of course was fantastic, and Rarity rocking the punk look all over town was as unexpected as it was delightful to watch, especially when she kept acting like herself again, it contrasted the punk image so wonderfully! And her learning to always believe that she was always fabulous no matter what she looked like, so long as she still behaved fabulously and channeled that into everything she did, was a great lesson for both herself as well as those who may be most affected by this episode, and a nice continuation of part of the lesson from Rarity's own legend of Mistmane which she recounted just a few episodes ago. So all in all, I really have no complaints about Rarity's performance here or how she was written; I still enjoyed her turn in "Campfire Tales" more personally, and for me that's still her highlight of the season, but this was a splendid turn for her all the same. Zecora coming back (in the first of back-to-back appearances, how about that!) was a welcome return, and unlike Daring Do's performance last week, Zecora's appearance here was not, thankfully, botched. I was honestly a little disappointed we didn't get to see her just shoot the shit some more with Pinkie Pie and Rarity when she started talking about manes and how tricky they are to handle with magic, but that was mostly because an unfortunate truth about Zecora is that she's usually there for the purpose of plot devices more than anything else. Most of what she says is either exposition about something that will be critical to the plot, or words of wisdom tied into the lesson learned. Make no mistake, I still enjoy her as a character and think she was used well here, but it is something I've noticed about her over time, and really it's a big reason we should see more of her, so that she's not just being used in such formulaic and predictable ways. Also, I can't help but think she should have taken a little bit more of the blame here for what happened to Rarity; she may not have gotten the bottles mixed up, but she is partially responsible in that she had no labels for two VERY different potions that look exactly the same. Overall, however, it was just nice seeing Ponyville's resident zebra once more, and I'm sure it'll be even better seeing her in this week's upcoming episode! Pinkie Pie, on the other hand, kind of annoyed me here. Her performance was nowhere near "MMMMystery on the Friendship Express" levels of bad or anything, but the best way I can put it is that they wrote her unnecessarily stupid here for the purposes of the plot. This is not the first time this has ever happened to Pinkie Pie as her over-the-top nature is often exploited by the show to create some kind of foil or plot device that gets everything else rolling, and many times it too has come off as lazy writing for this character. Pinkie may hardly be the brightest member of the Mane 6, but some of the shit she was doing in this episode seemed to be stuff that a five year old could figure out. Her spraying of that ridiculously sticky silly string EVERYWHERE in sight felt like something she'd impulsively do in a bad MLP fanfiction, not an actual episode; her repeated suggestion to simply use any cupcakes she salvaged from the silly string rather than bake new ones came off as both lazy and inconsiderate to the Cakes or their customers (even if it was a funny gag at certain points); and she seems to have spent at least an entire afternoon, if not one or multiple days even, simply trying to clean Sugarcube Corner up with the wrong potion, and you're telling me that in all of that time she never realized that this might be shampoo and not a magical cleaner??? All in all, hardly Pinkie's worst showing, but not exactly a flattering one either. She did, however, admittedly look rather adorable at the end of the episode after the shampoo debacle The rest of the Mane 6, on the other hand, were phenomenal, especially at the end. Twilight and Starlight (honorary fill-in for Spike here as far as I'm concerned) did admittedly get off to a bit of a rough start, mostly in that they, once again, couldn't resist messing with the laws of nature by trying to do something with their magic which, not a second before, they had said they shouldn't when they tried to assist Rarity with her mane through their magic. Now look, I get that they were just trying to be good friends, but (1) they've both made this mistake enough times with often near disastrous consequences that they should know better by this point, and (2) Twilight's first attempt in particular was a really shitty thing of her to do. They're trying to help their friend get her mane back, or some semblance of it, and what does she do? Why steal another pony's mane of course, much to that poor bucking crystal pony stallion's horror! I don't even get how the writers thought they could play this for laughs when they literally just gave this guy the same exact problem that Rarity was contending with the entire time, except I doubt he has a group of friends that includes a bucking Equestrian princess to help him try to get over such a dilemma. That'd be like doing a high school drama episode where, in order to help a friend who was anorexic, her friends tried somehow "passing" her anorexia onto someone else. Not a solid solution guys, not at all! At least the rest of their magical attempts weren't harmful to anyone else, and it was fantastic hearing them at least say no to attempting using time travel to fix things, but still, it was kind of ridiculous that those two made as many attempts as they did when they were so sure to start out that it wouldn't work. Besides that, however, Rarity's friends were great. Fluttershy, Rainbow Dash, and Applejack in particular tried their best to come through, first in trying to come up with whatever kind of wigs they could (in all honesty Applejack's was probably the most likely to work, even if Rainbow's looked the prettiest, but dear Lord Flutters I don't know why you thought Harry the Bear's green plant wig would work at all... even if it was hilarious and adorable seeing Harry working on it), and second in trying to bolster Rarity's spirits and help her regain her confidence to channel her inner fabulosity no matter what she looked like. Applejack in particular had some very personal lines of encouragement and support, a nice dose of Rarijack and reminder of how close those two in particular are in a season where we haven't seen a whole lot of it outside of this and one other episode. Probably her best line was when she hearkened back all the way to their very first adventure, reminding Rarity of when she did her first major act of generosity among her friends in giving up her tail to Steven Magnet; this was not only a critical element of Rarity's own nature to remind her of, but also highlighted how close these two are in showing how much of an impression this memory in particular must have left on Applejack. In the end, their support and friendship was exactly what Rarity needed in order to regain her confidence. Ponyville itself was very much alive in this episode, again in a way reminiscent of Seasons 1 and 2. The Flower Sisters, Roseluck, Daisy, and Lily, in particular had great showings and even showed shades of character growth; while they came close to panicking like they were so wont to do in early seasons, they ultimately kept their cool (with some assistance from Rarity) and did some smashing business with their flower sales while they were at it. They also treated Rarity the least different of any other business associates around Ponyville after her mane fiasco, simply unable to help her when they couldn't see her mane, which felt like a far more natural reaction than the other two. Speaking of which, fan pony salesman and Davenport, the owner of Quills and Sofas, were not nearly as charming. Fan pony store owner was relatively harmless, but he came off as a really inept business owner seeing as he was hurting his own business... simply because he had all of the fans in his store going at once, which made it hard for any pony to even enter his store. Pretty stupid move on his part, plus his later comments about "non-fabulous" ponies seemed a bit... superficial, at least how he delivered them. Davenport, however, was far worse in that he wasn't just stupid for not having wider variety in his sofas to start out, but was also a complete jackass! Dude made a business arrangement with Rarity, a very simple one at that; she gave him VERY sound business advice that helped him improve his sales, and in return all she wanted was a custom-made chaise lounge. Hell, as far as we know she was even going to pay for it in bits as well, so the fact that he was willing to break that agreement just for a few more bits is dickish beyond all belief. If I was Rarity, I wouldn't do business with a guy like that ever again! How can you really trust a guy like that in any type of business arrangement if he's willing to straight up break his word when it comes to his own business?! Aside from that, we had some fun appearances from Filthy Rich, Caramel (who may or may not now be a father of a filly via Sassaflash, who he was dating back in Season 2), Granny Smith and Grand Pear (who could be spotted in multiple scenes selling apple and pear products at a shared stand in the Ponyville Market), Apple Bloom conversing with Burnt Oak (again, another great bit of continuity from "The Perfect Pear," even if it would have been cooler seeing Big Mac talk to him), Big Mac and Sugar Belle taking a romantic walk at Sweet Apple Acres (something which I missed in my first viewing, though to be fair they showed it sooooooo briefly that it really is easy for anyone to miss), and Derpy at both the beginning and end, including rocking the ONLY one of the Rarity-inspired punk manes that looked as fabulous as hers did! Seeing so many different faces from Ponyville showing up in notable roles here was great, and something that is far too rare at this point in the show. Mannnnnnnn, the Flower Sisters are SO CUTE!!! As you can see, all of the elements we had in this episode easily add up to a good, perfectly likable episode. So you're probably wondering in what way I think it possibly could have been better? Well, odd as it may sound, I really do think this episode, by virtue of its subject alone, could have been far more daring if it wanted to. Allow me to explain. The elephant in the room with the subject of an episode like this is twofold. Rarity lost something which she believed is fundamental to achieving her own identity. Not in a superficial way (mostly), but this is a character who loves being fabulous and sharing that side of herself with others in any way she can, so it's easy to understand why this situation would be so personally distressful for her. Obviously, this episode can easily be relatable for two groups of people: (1) more generally speaking, anyone who has lost due to unfortunate circumstances something about themselves they consider to be a defining trait, or (2) more specifically, people who have lost their hair, especially due to a medical condition of some kind. That's a pretty heavy real world parallel for any MLP ep, and there's no way the writers weren't aware of it. So how could they have pushed the envelope just a bit more with this one? In just a few little ways, really. For starters, even though Rarity's mane eventually grew back, we didn't need to see that at the end of the episode; it needlessly minimized what she'd gone through, as well as the triumph of how she'd just rectified her situation as best as she could. Going even further, she didn't even necessarily need to fix her mane at all; as awesome as the punk mane was, I couldn't help but wonder (1) why it didn't occur to her to do that in the first place, and (2) how she had enough hair to do that? For her it was a wonderful fix, but in real world parallels, lots of people can't always do such a fun solution as Rarity did. Some may have no hair to spare at all (though of course wigs are always an option), and for others the lack of hair may even be the least of their problems. So what could have happened instead? Well, I say, what if the Mane 6 hadn't been able to really help Rarity? What if no one at first could, and she herself couldn't simply fix it by going with a different mane style? What if eventually, she came across somepony who in many ways had it even rougher than she did? This could either have been somepony with some kind of medical condition, or if the writers wanted to be less serious, a character like Derpy who has been the town klutz for years and has had to always live with that. In either case, she could have simply talked with this pony, asking in awe how they've managed to stay positive or their chipper selves despite their struggles and challenges in life. Their answer? They never let whatever bad conditions or circumstances they had in their lives define who they were. They always stay true to themselves and never, ever let any limitations they face keep them from remaining who they are, for their own sake as well as for the sake of those they love. Doing it doesn't mean it's easy, just worthwhile. Such an example would have been inspiring to somepony like Rarity, and led her to concluding the same thing she did in the episode as it is, simply in more dramatic fashion as the result of a far more serious experience. Now again, I must reiterate that this episode did not disappoint me. Executed as it was, it was a very good episode. But I still strongly believe that it could have been more if it wanted to be, and can't help but regret that we'll never get to see what it could have been if treated just a tad more seriously, even if what we got all around was good itself. That's all I've got for you everypony, until next time this is Batbrony signing off. I'm off!!! *cue dramatic exit* Let's close this thread with, what else, a shitload of Punk Rarity pics!!! I won't lie, if this had happened, it would have easily been the most metal thing ever!!!
  5. Kind of thinking that mistmane might be in "It isn't the mane thing about you" and not campfire tales. Specifically, we're expecting only 3 legends to be used in campfire tales, right? (One for each of the CMC). At the same time, we're also expecting the other 2 legends to be used during this season, with most people speculating on Meadowbrook showing up in a health of information. So, Rockhoof and magnus feel like solid guesses for Applebloom and Scoots, leaving somnambula and Mistmane for the remaining characters. Now, What do we know about Somnambula and mistmane? Well, Mistmane gives up her youth to save equestria, helped a bunch of Animals by getting luna to change The castle of the two sisterCanterlot's design, looked asian and fought Pony Fu-manchu, and Somnambula looks like an egyptian, has a bunch of gemstones on the cover of her Comic cover, and goes into a snake's stomach to save it. Now, think about mistmane and what she did as her biggest act, sacrificing her youth (and her looks with it) to save equestria, and then what other episodes we have coming down the line: It isn't the mane thing about you is about Rarity losing her Hair in an accident, and most probably will be her finding out/realizing that her beauty is only a small bit of why everyone loves and respects her. So mistmane would actually work incredibly well as a character to be brought up in that episode, being a beautiful pony who sacrified her age and beauty (Generosity) to help others and was even more beloved for that than her looks-- MistMANE, it isn't the MANE thing about you, ect. ect. ect. On the other hand, having a hard time figuring out where somnambula might factor into other episodes: not really seeing any episode in which she'd really fit in (though I could possibly see flash being used in Triple threat with ember), though there is Number 24 uncommon bond. Just by a matter of elimination, I think it makes more sense that we'll see somnambula and not mistmane in campfire tales.