Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 13: Sisterhooves Social + The Cutie Pox + May the Best Pet Win!

Introduction

< Part 12 | Part 13 | Part 14 >

Season 2, Episodes 5-7


Season 2 Episode 5: Sisterhooves Social

In five words: Sibling frustration reaches breaking point.

Premise: When Sweetie Belle asks Rarity to go with her to the [insert episode’s title here], Rarity refuses and Sweetie Belle decides she wants to be Applejack’s sister instead.

Detailed run-through:

This episode begins with a scene that perfectly demonstrates the premise of its first half: Sweetie Belle clumsily attempting to do nice things for her big sister. To start off, Rarity waves up from pleasant food dreams to the smell of smoke, which leads her to see Sweetie Belle about to prepare breakfast in bed for her. Sweetie Belle starts this show as well-meaning but clumsy and not very good at anything; among the three Cutie Mark Crusaders, I’d say she has the strongest character development as the show progresses. But then again, she’s my favorite of the Crusaders in general.

Rarity’s parents make their first (and only voiced) appearance in this episode, and all I can think about is how unlike every other member of the Mane 6, Rarity didn’t get an episode going in depth on her relationship with her parents. We just know them as parents who embarrass their elder daughter regularly and have far lower standards for food than her, while seeming to get along perfectly well with their younger daughter. They’re supposed to be Sweetie Belle’s regular caretakers until Rarity basically supersedes that role, meaning we don’t even get more scenes of Sweetie Belle interacting with their parents. Rarity’s parents just say they’re going on vacation for a week, leaving Sweetie Belle to stay with Rarity, and that’s all we hear from them.

Rarity having a “parent episode” so to speak would have been GLORIOUS! And yet, she just… didn’t get one, I guess. Ah well, not everything is perfect. The blueprint for a potential Rarity parent episode is there though, with an uptight elder daughter and ridiculously laid-back parents. I’m sure fans have written decent stories of their own about Rarity’s relationship with her parents. Or Sweetie Belle’s relationship with her parents, for that matter.

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The Obligatory Psycholonials Review Post

The title screen of Psycholonials, put for the sake of having at least one image in this post.

If you don’t know what Psycholonials is, it’s a visual novel released sequentially in February through April 2021 by Andrew Hussie, the creator of the legendary webcomic Problem Sleuth.

… what, are you telling me that there’s another webcomic Hussie wrote after Problem Sleuth that’s much more famous? OK, fine, I’ll drop the act. I’ve accepted long ago that I can never escape Homestuck and that it’ll always be with me, as the visual novel reminds readers near the start. This review will contain spoilers for Psycholonials, so read at your own risk!

Comparison to Homestuck

Where do I begin with Psycholonials? It’s the first work of fiction written entirely by Andrew Hussie since Homestuck ended in 2016, and it’s far shorter than Homestuck, which I find relieving. Not because I didn’t enjoy Psycholonials—quite the opposite! It’s more that Hussie intended for Homestuck to run for only a year at first, and it spiraled WAY out of control as he expanded Homestuck and started various side projects related to it, making the comic instead run for seven years. Hussie had long promised Homestuck to be merely a precursor to later works to come, and with Psycholonials, he’s fulfilling that promise at long last.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 12: Lesson Zero + Luna Eclipsed

Introduction

< Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 >

Season 2, Episodes 3-4


Season 2 Episode 3: Lesson Zero

In five words: Twilight undergoes hilarious mental breakdown.

Premise: Twilight Sparkle realizes the deadline for her weekly letter to Celestia is imminent and causes havoc (and hilarity) trying to find, then make a friendship problem.

Detailed run-through:

Spike probably hears the word “checklist” so often that it sometimes doesn’t even seem like a word anymore.

This episode starts with Twilight Sparkle reminding us about her comical obsession with checklists by reviewing her checklist for items needed to create a checklist, then starting her checklist of things she has to get done today with making a checklist of things she has to get done today, which is confusingly recursive. This obsession reminder leads to a groan from Spike and sets the stage for this episode’s focus: Twilight Sparkle’s obsession with order and detail going complete bonkers.

Derpy Hooves is here!!!!!

This episode is where the show’s theme song is updated for the first time, both visually and musically. The instrumentation has been adjusted to be a little more punchy (especially in the intro), and the vocals have been re-recorded. As for the visuals, only the scene above has changed, most notably adding a train with a certain fan favorite background pony inside the roof and replacing the random background stallion with Big Macintosh—a heartwarming testament to the fans and a logical, obvious replacement respectively. The Cutie Mark Crusaders are briefly seen together in the back of the train, which is again a logical addition.

Worth noting that this episode is the first one where unicorns’ magic has a consistent look, with a different color for each unicorn.
Between magic colors and the updated theme song, this episode is the first one that FEELS like season 2.

Twilight Sparkle’s signs of obsessive-compulsive disorder increase as she goes to Sugarcube Corner and picks up a box of twelve cupcakes from Mrs. Cake, except it turns out to be thirteen, and the frosting isn’t spread 100% evenly. You could argue it’s weird that Twilight’s character is exaggerated just for the sake of this episode, but I couldn’t care less in this case because this episode is so hilarious. She resolves the situation by leaving an equally tiny bit of frosting on each cupcake. Most of the frosting ended up on Spike, who comically washes himself using his tongue with a sort of tornado formation, which is perfectly in line with this episode’s sense of humor.

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Change of plans regarding my rewritten Homestuck posts

My classic Homestuck blog post series, the one I’ve been writing on and off since 2015, is on the verge of completion. I have only 14 posts left (start of A6A6I5 to the Snapchat credits), which is maybe more like the verge of the verge of completion, but it still truly feels like the final stretch! I’m greatly looking forward to the day I finish my Homestuck post series and the triumphant feeling of completion that it will surely bring… but what does that mean for my rewritten posts?

I had originally planned to end my rewritten Homestuck posts with the end of Act 5 Act 1 (the trolls’ arc), but I decided a few days ago that it would be better to finish those with the end of Act 4 instead. I’ve chosen this earlier cutoff point because I’m not motivated enough to finish my rewritten posts all the way up to Act 5 Act 1, but I still want to finish those at a natural cutoff point. I’ve been sitting on my next rewritten post (Act 4, part 2 of 6) since early March, and I’d love to finish rewriting my Act 4 posts before I’m finished with my Homestuck post series as a whole. Four and a half rewritten posts doesn’t seem like a tall order alongside the fourteen classic posts I’ve yet to write (after I write my Psycholonials review post, I have only one chapter before I’ve finished playing/reading it).

I had long wanted my rewritten posts to effectively supersede my original Homestuck posts, but now I think that if someone were to subject themselves to reading my Homestuck posts in comic order, it would be most interesting to start with the original posts and see my writing style and opinions on Homestuck evolve over time. As such, I’m not as fond of the idea of rewriting my Homestuck posts as I used to be, but I still want to give them a proper cutoff point rather than abruptly ending partway through Act 4.

For real, though, I want to finish my Homestuck post series as soon as I can so that I never have to think about Homestuck again! Even though I know deep down that I’ll never truly be free from Homestuck, it will be very liberating when I’m done with this ambitious project that I’ve willfully subjected myself to and could cancel at any time but have merely chosen not to. I can finish my Homestuck posts, and I will finish my Homestuck posts, much unlike what I thought during my nearly two years of hiatus through most of 2017 and 2018.

Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 11: The Return of Harmony, Part 1 + 2

Introduction

< Part 10 | Part 11 | Part 12 >

Season 2, Episode 1-2

One season down, eight to go!!! Well, more like seven and a half seasons, because season 3 of MLP:FiM is half the length of other seasons.

Season 1 took me about two months to go through, which is pretty good by my standards! Season 2 will likely take a bit longer depending on how I split the episodes and if I procrastinate enough that I’ll have to miss a week. As for later seasons, we’ll just have to see what happens, but expect the level of detail to ramp up considerably once I get to season 5 and onwards… which is over half the show, but whatever.


Season 2 Episode 1: The Return of Harmony, Part 1

This review contains spoilers for season 3! Even those who haven’t seen MLP may know Discord is a recurring character after his debut, but they aren’t as likely to know what he does after this episode. So, um, read at your own discretion.

In five words: Introducing everyone’s favorite villain, Discord.

Premise: A new villain named Discord arises from his frozen state and steals the Elements of Harmony, playing all sorts of mind games on the Mane 6 in the process.

Detailed run-through:

The very beginning of season 2 of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic demonstrates that the show’s cast has solidified quite a bit over its first season. Cheerilee is taking the Cutie Mark Crusaders’ class on a field trip to the Canterlot sculpture garden, and the class now has a good eight members who are actual characters and not just generic extras: an inseparable trio, two inseparable duos, and Twist. As the show’s cast of named characters expands, so does the show’s attention to detail, and you know how much I love some good attention to detail.

This scene features the memetic line directed at Sweetie Belle, “what are you, a dictionary?”
Why is Sweetie Belle by far the smartest of the Cutie Mark Crusaders???

When Cheerilee presents the statue of Discord, the Cutie Mark Crusaders get into an argument and demonstrate (and had already been demonstrating) the concept of—you guessed it—discord. And let me tell you, between Discord the MLP character and Discord the chat client, it’s INCREDIBLY weird typing “discord” as a lowercase word. I suppose the Crusaders’ live demonstration was meant to teach viewers what “discord” means through example, which is especially useful for young viewers today who know Discord as the name of a chat client. This benign opening ends with the statue of Discord cracking and the draconequus himself deeply laughing, setting the stage for this two-part episode.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 10: Party of One + The Best Night Ever

Introduction

< Part 9 | Part 10 | Part 11 >

Season 1, Episodes 25-26

I’m warning you right now: my review of The Best Night Ever is gigantic. It’s my longest episode review yet! My review of Party of One, on the other hand, is fairly short.


Season 1 Episode 25: Party of One

In five words: Pinkie undergoes infamous mental breakdown.

Premise: The day after a birthday celebration for her pet alligator Gummy, Pinkie Pie notices something fishy about her friends and suspects that they don’t like her parties anymore. She doesn’t take this well, to say the least.

Detailed run-through:

This musical sequence is the first time we see Rainbow Dash’s residence, but it’s only the outside.

This episode begins with a musical number where Pinkie Pie visits each of her friends’ houses, giving a singing telegram about Gummy’s upcoming birthday. I love everything about this musical number—Pinkie Pie’s increasingly ridiculous outfits, the scene transitions with Gummy in various poses, her friends’ confused reactions, the song gradually slowing as Pinkie gets tired, and the hot air balloon she rides to visit Rainbow Dash’s place. Not to mention the implication that she sang the song in its entirety to each of her friends individually, leading each of them to have the exact same reaction. The whole thing is so fun and silly, so Pinkie Pie.

After the theme song, Gummy’s birthday party is held with the right amount of humor to be typical for this show while still making it clear that the ponies are all grateful to have Pinkie Pie as a friend.

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Cookie Fonster’s Homestuck Reflections Part 126: CLAYMATION REVELATIONIFICATION STATION.

Introduction

< Part 125 | Part 126 | Part 127 >

Act 6 Act 6 Act 5

Pages 7409-7448

Because “CLAYMATION REVELATION STATION” wasn’t spicy enough.

Since I’m bored out of my mind, semester finished and all, there’s no better time than now to start the last leg of my Homestuck blog post series! Not to mention that I have all the rest of the season 1 posts for a different post series queued and ready to release… Before we begin, let me quickly recap what all is left in my Homestuck posts:

  • Act 6 Act 6 Act 5: 1 post (126)
  • Act 6 Act 6 Intermission 5: 12 posts (127-138; last one covers everything post-Omegapause before [S] Collide)
  • [S] Collide and following pages: 1 post (139)
  • Act 7 and credits: 1 post (140)

I had said in earlier posts that I planned to immediately follow the ending of my Homestuck posts with a full-out epilogues analysis in the same style, but I don’t really feel like doing so anymore. My Homestuck blog post series has been going on for five and a half years already, and I’d rather give it a clear-cut ending than continue with its further media. I already made quite a few posts talking about the epilogues anyway, including my epilogues review post. And there’s no way I would ever want to do blog posts analyzing the absolute trainwreck that is Homestuck^2. If I keep a reasonable pace of about five Homestuck posts every month, I’ll finish this post series around the middle of August! It’s going to feel so amazing finishing these posts, but to get that feeling, I actually have to, you know, finish these posts.

Now, let’s begin Act 6 Act 6 Act 5, or as it’s better known, Caliborn’s Masterpiece.

Act 6 Act 6 Act 5 of Homestuck begins with a flash, featuring Caliborn’s crudely drawn curtains fading into the same design pasted on somewhat more realistic-looking curtains. This shows how far Caliborn has come as an artist while retaining at least some of his roots and his bizarre sense of humor… which is to say, Hussie’s bizarre sense of humor.

Speaking of Hussie’s bizarre sense of humor, I’ve been meaning to play Psycholonials, which will perhaps allow me to put a brand new layer of analysis on my Homestuck posts.

The curtains open to reveal a stage that parallels Calliope’s stage in the dream bubbles, with a purple spiral drawn with Caliborn’s old jagged art style instead of a smooth, artistic yellow spiral. Well, the purple spiral is artistic too, just in a different way. There isn’t much of a story behind the stages, and I don’t think there needs to be; they’re both just suitable places for each of the cherubs to tell stories.

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I say something about every element in the periodic table

Here’s a post that’s unlike the content I usually put on this site. You see, when I was a kid, I had many different obsession phases, one of which was a periodic table phase. And I can’t blame my past self for being so fascinated by the periodic table! There’s just something incredibly fascinating about that table listing names for elements that constitute everything in existence—some substances known since ancient times like copper and gold, some names you hear a lot in science like hydrogen and oxygen, some you hear about in nutrition facts like sodium and calcium, some scary names like arsenic and plutonium, and some weird ones you’ve never heard of like thulium and rutherfordium.

One day a few weeks ago, I thought it would be fun to say something about each of the elements with a twist—each element will have a description with the same number of words as its atomic number, meaning hydrogen will get one word and oganesson (the current heaviest known element) will get 118 words—and that’s how this blog post was born. If you forget which element is which and where everything is on the periodic table, just look it up on Wikipedia or something. Without further ado, let’s begin with the list!

(Also, if you see anything wrong in this list, don’t hesitate to leave a comment correcting it!)

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 9: A Bird in the Hoof + The Cutie Mark Chronicles + Owl’s Well That Ends Well

Introduction

< Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10 >

Season 1, Episodes 22-24

NOTE: I accidentally published an unfinished version of this post on April 21. Sorry about that!


Season 1 Episode 22: A Bird in the Hoof

In five words: Fluttershy babysits bird without permission.

Premise: After a party in Ponyville where Princess Celestia came over, Fluttershy notices that Celestia’s pet bird Philomena looks ill and thus attempts to resuscitate her. Frustration ensues, as does the daunting realization that she didn’t even ask for permission.

Detailed run-through:

Oh look, it’s the dresses for the Grand Galloping Gala!
(That’s the only reason why I’m including this image.)

This episode starts with Fluttershy at home tending to her animals, until Angel reminds her of an imminently upcoming brunch party at Sugarcube Corner, where Celestia has come to visit. After Fluttershy leaves in a hurry, Angel locks himself inside the house, finally ready for some peace and quiet. Angel is one mischievous bunny—his name is far more indicative of Fluttershy’s personality than his own. Not because Fluttershy is an angel (even though she is), rather because she thinks of every single animal she knows as an angel.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 8: A Dog and Pony Show + Green Isn’t Your Color + Over a Barrel

Introduction

< Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 >

Season 1, Episodes 19-21


Season 1 Episode 19: A Dog and Pony Show

In five words: Rarity subverts “damsel in distress”.

Premise: While mining for gems, Rarity gets abducted by the Diamond Dogs. Her friends have no idea how much she’s not a stereotypical damsel in distress.

Detailed run-through:

This episode begins with famous pop singer pony Sapphire Shores visiting Rarity’s boutique and recognizing her name, much to her shock and then nervous delight. Sapphire Shores sees a gem-filled dress Rarity made and asks her to make five more of them, but to do this, Rarity needs to find more gems. It’s clear from what we saw in Suited for Success that Rarity won’t refuse such a request. Rather, she’ll follow it to the letter, which sets the stage for this episode’s plot.

Rarity repeatedly reminds us how ladylike she is in this scene, which sets up this episode’s moral.

I love how Spike uses his tail as a shovel and then a drill. Creative cartoon physics right there.

And so, Rarity takes Spike along on one of their many journeys where they hunt for gems. This scene demonstrates Rarity’s skill in persuasion and sweet-talk, because she’s the only one who can get Spike to not greedily devour every gem he comes across. Though this may have something to do with the fact that Spike has a gigantic crush on Rarity, which he outright states in the next episode to nobody’s surprise. Still, though, this is some good establishing of Rarity’s strengths.

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