Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 50: Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep? + Canterlot Boutique

Introduction

< Part 49 | Part 50 | Part 51 >

Season 5, Episodes 13-14

Just like with my Homestuck posts, 50 is a fun number to reach because I’m halfway to 100 posts. It’s also a nice point to reflect on how much bigger this project became than I first envisioned, because of a little something called Cookiefonster’s Law: It always becomes more ambitious than you expect, even when you take into account Cookiefonster’s Law.

(Yeah, this law is just a riff on Hofstadter’s Law. Still, it heavily applies to every creative project I ever do.)


Season 5 Episode 13: Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep?

In five words: Luna’s self-blame infects dreams.

Premise: The Mane 6 have to help fight a monster who has been haunting Luna’s dreams called the Tantabus. Callbacks and dream shenanigans ensue.

Detailed run-through:

This episode starts off right away with anime battle shenanigans that turn out to be one of Luna’s dreams. A blob of grayish darkness called the Tantabus turns Luna into Nightmare Moon, the Mane 6 defeat her with magic rainbow beams, and Luna wakes up in a panic.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 49: Amending Fences

Introduction

< Part 48 | Part 49 | Part 50 >

Season 5, Episode 12

We have quite a spicy lineup of episodes for the next month and a half, most of which will get their own individual, lovingly crafted posts: Amending Fences, Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep?, Canterlot Boutique, Rarity Investigates!, Made in Manehattan, Brotherhooves Social, and Crusaders of the Lost Mark. All seven of these episodes have something cool and special about them, whether it be the Cutie Mark Crusaders accomplishing something huge, Twilight Sparkle’s backstory getting fleshed way out, or Coco Pommel being heart-meltingly adorable. The rest of season 5 will be the usual paired episodes, and when I finish the season, I will decide if I want to make single-episode posts the rule instead of the exception.


Season 5 Episode 12: Amending Fences

In five words: Series’ first few minutes revisited.

Premise: Twilight Sparkle reconnects with her old friends from Canterlot who we saw in the first few minutes of the first episode. Most of them are eager to hang out with her, but there’s one who bitterly swore off friendship after Twilight moved out: Moondancer.

Detailed run-through (aka the tangent about this episode from this Homestuck post but much longer and completely unrestrained):

Imagine you’re making a TV show that has become wildly popular among a far older audience than expected and need to come up with episode ideas for its fifth season. By now, you’ve gone through all the simple and obvious ideas for a show about friendship, so what can you do? One such thing is look back on the first episode with all its early installment weirdness, take something that was never elaborated upon, and flesh it WAY out. I find this sort of thing to be extremely delightful and cool and fun, especially in a show that I find extremely delightful and cool and fun.

This episode starts on an un-season-1-like note with Twilight Sparkle sitting on a fancy crystal couch, needing some time to relax after attending three events as a princess in one week. This makes an appropriate time for her and Spike to reflect on how much she’s been through since she moved to Ponyville. Spike remarks that back when she lived in Canterlot, Twilight wasn’t a very good friend to others. While Spike intended only to reflect on how far she’s come, Twilight panics when she realizes how much she’s been neglecting her friends from Canterlot. This leads her to leap into action and go on a journey to reunite with her friends whose names she doesn’t remember and expects Spike to remember for some reason.

Actually, I can sort of buy Twilight expecting Spike to remember names she can’t. She puts a lot of duties onto her dragon sidekick, like the dishes he complained about at the start of this episode, and she sometimes forgets which ones he can feasibly do. (Though Spike does later recite all her friends’ names.)

Spike: Come on, Twilight. You’re getting worked up about nothing.
Twilight Sparkle: The only logical place to start is at the beginning.

One thing this episode has in common with Slice of Life is that it leans on the fourth wall at times. An example is when Twilight Sparkle says to start at the beginning, referring to her old house in Canterlot. While this is obviously a reference to where the show began, I’d also like to think of it in in-universe terms. The day Twilight Sparkle moved to Ponyville is clearly an important day for her, because it started the current chapter of her life. Although her first onscreen moment in the show was right outside this castle, the day presumably started with her waking up inside it.

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My Thoughts on Regular Show, Season by Season (Part 2 of 4)

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

Remember when I said I would make three blog posts reviewing Regular Show? Yeah, so… that number kind of just bumped up to four. The reason why is because I was slower with writing this post than expected and didn’t want to drag ass for too long. This post goes over seasons 4-5, part 3 will go over seasons 6-7, and part 4 will go over season 8.

To be fair, seasons 1 and 2 combined are the same length as most other seasons: 40 ten-minute episodes. So this post covers about the same amount of content as part 1, just with more text.


Season 4: Introducing Thomas

I’ll never forget how incredibly hyped I was when watching this episode’s premiere.

The first two-part episode of the show other than Terror Tales of the Park, Exit 9B (4.01-02) is one hell of a strong start for season 4. It features all the park members besides Mordecai and Rigby having their jobs switched and memories erased, and a huge showdown of the park crew against every single villain we’ve seen in the first three seasons, all led by the vengeful son of the guy whose high score Mordecai and Rigby had beaten. The episode is full of hype all the way through and raises the bar for how dramatic this show is willing to get. In the end, the day is saved by a new addition to the cast: the park’s intern named Thomas. When a show adds a new character to its main cast, the character will usually be divisive, and Thomas is no exception.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 48: Princess Spike + Party Pooped

Introduction

< Part 47 | Part 48 | Part 49 >

Season 5, Episodes 10-11


Season 5 Episode 10: Princess Spike

In five words: Spike does absolutely everything wrong.

Premise: While Twilight Sparkle is asleep in Canterlot for the day, Spike fills in for her event organization duties and gets carried away with his newfound freedom and authority. He starts doing some incredibly foolish things.

Detailed run-through:

Oh, boy. We’re at yet another controversial Spike episode now. When going through the show’s most controversial episodes, I usually dread going through them at first, but in the end I have quite a bit of fun picking them apart and giving honest criticism. So maybe this episode will be similar!

The very start of this episode has something I never noticed before: it takes place in the same building where the Grand Galloping Gala is hosted. I actually really like this location reuse. It’s logical and realistic, reminiscent of convention centers where different events are hosted throughout the year.

Note the bags under Twilight Sparkle’s eyes. She clearly worked herself a little too hard.

The event is called the Grand Equestria Pony Summit, and it features ponies from all around Equestria plus some griffons here and there. The princesses on stage present a statue made of gemstones from the cities where all the attendees live. Twilight Sparkle gives a little speech at the summit and mentions that organizing it has led to quite a few sleepless nights, which the guests in the audience don’t seem to think hard about even though she looks and sounds drowsy. Perhaps they think “sleepless nights” was a figure of speech, not something to take literally? Or do they think alicorns have a special power to remain wide awake as long as they like?

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My Thoughts on Regular Show, Season by Season (Part 1 of 4)

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

For those who don’t know, Regular Show is an eight-season Cartoon Network show directed by J.G. Quintel that ran from 2010 to 2017. In short, it’s about a bunch of guys who work at a park and get into mishaps that lead to surreal adventures. But there’s much more to Regular Show than that, and in this three-part blog post series, I want to review this show and give it the justice it deserves. This post goes over seasons 1-3; the next two will go through seasons 4-6 and 7-8 respectively.

EDIT: Change of plans, this is now going to be a four-part blog post series. The next three posts will go over seasons 4-5, 6-7, and 8 respectively.

Regular Show is a show that I have a long history with. I remember the day I first watched it in I want to say January 2011, on the old tiny TV in my parents’ bedroom when I was home alone, and it didn’t take me long to get hooked and follow almost every episode live from season 2 through 5, then inconsistently in season 6. As much as I enjoyed the show, I eventually stopped following it for a good while as my parents got rid of our cable TV in favor of streaming services. That didn’t stop me from watching episodes on unofficial mirrors online, which I did several times from 2016 to 2019, but I never quite finished the show. Eventually, over the course of the past month, I binged the entire show on TV with my family Hulu subscription until I watched the final episode on August 10, 2022.

Given that it took me over a decade between first watching and finishing Regular Show, and that it had a fair amount of influence on my life—my main Internet username before my current one was WikiRigbyDude—I think it’s only right to talk about this show on my blog. But don’t worry, I won’t make a lengthy ambitious post series analyzing every episode. Instead, I’ll talk about the show season by season in three blog posts, and discuss various episodes along the way that I think are highlights. Unlike a certain show involving horses, most Regular Show episodes are only ten minutes each, meaning there’s usually not that much to say about each one.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 47: Slice of Life

Introduction

< Part 46 | Part 47 | Part 48 >

Season 5, Episode 9

I’ve finally made it to a very special episode of the show: Slice of Life, which is an episode I had heard about during my six-year break from watching this show. You probably know that to celebrate its 100th episode, MLP:FiM did an episode focusing on the background ponies. But that episode also has an insane amount of callbacks and details and fandom references meant for fans like me to pick up on, and in this review, I’ll go over them all in as much detail as I can.

Are you ready for my number one longest MLP episode review so far? It’s over 7400 words long—don’t say I didn’t warn you! (Most of my episode reviews are less than half this long.)


Season 5 Episode 9: Slice of Life

In five words: 22 minutes of pure fanservice.

Premise: The 100th episode of the show, intended as an homage to its fans. Cranky Doodle Donkey and Matilda are getting married, and the show’s most popular background ponies go through a variety of mishaps to ensure their wedding goes as planned.

Detailed run-through that puts all previous detailed run-throughs to shame:

*takes a deep breath*

If you thought my reviews of Magical Mystery Cure, Rarity Takes Manehattan, and Make New Friends but Keep Discord were way too detailed, then just you wait. For I am going to analyze this episode in the most thorough level of detail I possibly can, starting with Cranky Doodle Donkey and Matilda’s scrapbook.

This episode starts with Matilda opening a scrapbook with pictures of herself and Cranky Doodle Donkey, showing that although we’ve barely seen them since their debut, they’ve gone on plenty of offscreen adventures like a trip to Manehattan and a Hearth’s Warming Eve celebration. As I said at the end of A Friend In Deed, the show graciously gives these two donkeys some privacy after Pinkie Pie reunites them, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t gone on their own escapades. We just didn’t get to see them because Cranky Doodle Donkey is a very private guy. Though he and Matilda aren’t background ponies, I find it fitting for the episode to start with them since its overarching focus is looking into the lives of characters who normally stay in the background.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 46: Make New Friends but Keep Discord + The Lost Treasure of Griffonstone

Introduction

< Part 45 | Part 46 | Part 47 >

Season 5, Episodes 7-8

Make New Friends but Keep Discord is another season 5 review that turned out much longer than I expected! It ended up being my second longest episode review so far, surpassed only by Magical Mystery Cure but surely soon to be beaten by Slice of Life. On the other hand, my review of The Lost Treasure of Grifffonstone is short enough that I felt comfortable having both episodes share a post.


Season 5 Episode 7: Make New Friends but Keep Discord

In five words: Jealousy leads to attempted banishment.

Premise: When Fluttershy invites a new friend of hers named Tree Hugger to the Grand Galloping Gala, Discord gets jealous and brings a dangerous creature of his own.

Ultra-detailed run-through:

This review is going to be another hefty one. Just letting you know.

This episode starts on a very peaceful note, with Fluttershy and Discord in the middle of trading humorous stories while having tea together. While they became friends two seasons ago, this is the first episode since then where their friendship is the primary focus. This opening scene cements that their friendship has settled down, and we get about 20 seconds of cutesy fun times until the episode’s conflict is revealed.

Fluttershy: Oh, I do love our Tuesday teas. And I can’t wait for you to meet my friend Tree Hugger! She’s going to love you too.
Discord: Tree… Hugger? (laughs)

Discord looks shocked for a moment when Fluttershy brings up Tree Hugger, but he laughs it off when his brain chooses to assume it’s a joke. But given what Tree Hugger turns out to be like, Fluttershy has reason to believe she and Discord would get along well. Not everyone enjoys Discord’s wild antics and sense of humor, but Tree Hugger is spectacularly unfazed by freaky shenanigans. Though Fluttershy doesn’t mean any harm to Discord with this new friend, his simplistic understanding of friendship leads to immense jealousy.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 45: Tanks for the Memories + Appleoosa’s Most Wanted

Introduction

< Part 44 | Part 45 | Part 46 >

Season 5, Episodes 5-6


Season 5 Episode 5: Tanks for the Memories

In five words: Rainbow Dash sequentially experiences grief.

Premise: When she learns that her pet turtle Tank will hibernate through the winter, Rainbow Dash tries to stop the season from happening so she won’t have to say goodbye. This matches heavily with the five stages of grief.

Detailed run-through:

Season 5 has tons of fun callbacks to early seasons, showing how far the show has come.

The start of this episode provides a snappy little recap of how the seasons work in Equestria, something we learned in two close-by season 1 episodes. Rainbow Dash notices that Cloudsdale is coming to Ponyville, meaning that winter is soon to start, and she’s super excited about this because it’ll be her first winter with Tank by her side. Season 5 has several episodes that take place a year (or maybe two) after episodes in the early seasons, and this one occurs a year after Fall Weather Friends. Or maybe if you’re willing to shuffle around the order of episodes in seasons 1 and 2 (like Winter Wrap Up and Hearth’s Warming Eve), you could argue it’s two years after? Whatever, mulling over numbers isn’t the point of these reviews.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 44: Bloom & Gloom

Introduction

< Part 43 | Part 44 | Part 45 >

Season 5, Episode 4

Warning you now: this review is even longer than the last one (believe me, I didn’t plan that). It’s slightly longer than that of The Best Night Ever, for reference.


Season 5 Episode 4: Bloom & Gloom

You know the drill. Cutie Mark Crusaders episode, spoilers for the big thing that happens midway through season 5.

In five words: Nightmares tease Crusaders’ running mystery.

Premise: Apple Bloom has a cyclical series of dreams where she earns her cutie mark, and nightmarish things happen each time. Luna eventually comes in to alleviate her worries.

Detailed run-through:

Over time, the Crusaders’ clubhouse has gradually gotten more decorations.

The first Cutie Mark Crusaders episode of season 5 begins with these three being exactly the same goofy kids I remembered. Apple Bloom hosts a meeting and does a roll call that the other two point out are unnecessary, demonstrating the trio’s endearing flavor of pseudo-formality that shows they have high dreams but don’t know what they’re doing. And this brings me to something I recall thinking when I first watched several Cutie Mark Crusaders episodes in the last season: are these three ever going to get their cutie marks? Season 5 has several episodes that build up this mystery before giving it a glorious resolution in an episode I plan on going through in extreme depth, like Magical Mystery Cure levels of depth if not more.

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Cookie Fonster Reviews Every MLP Episode Part 43: Castle Sweet Castle

Introduction

< Part 42 | Part 43 | Part 44 >

Season 5, Episode 3

This post was originally going to cover both Castle Sweet Castle and Bloom & Gloom. However, my reviews of both episodes ended up much longer than I thought, so I’ve chosen to split the post in half! Hopefully this will make my episode reviews seem less like neverending walls of words.


Season 5 Episode 3: Castle Sweet Castle

In five words: Twilight adapts to another change.

Premise: Twilight Sparkle doesn’t feel quite at home in her new castle and has been doing strange activities with her friends instead of getting used to the place, so her friends try to make the castle feel more like home.

Detailed run-through:

As with The Cutie Map, the beginning of this episode (which consists of Twilight Sparkle helping Fluttershy wash her animals) is an appropriate time to reflect on when I watched it for the first time.

During the six years between watching season 4 and season 5 of MLP, there was one question about the show that my brain would now and then divert to: how in the world is Twilight Sparkle going to be OK with having to live in an extravagant new castle instead of her quaint little library?! It’s a question that I found myself scratching my head over quite a lot, because her house’s destruction was easily the scene I remembered the most from the season 4 finale. I think I even told myself that such merch-driven changes like Twilight being a princess and her new fancy castle are proof that the show wasn’t that great. Because I was left hanging on this question for so long, when I saw the title of this episode on a list of season 5’s episodes, I internally squeed a little. I just KNEW the show was going to address this question in a satisfying and earnest way that matches what I’ve always enjoyed about Twilight Sparkle’s character.

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