We’ve finally made it to the season 5 finale! As excited as I am to analyze it, I am going to need a sizable break afterwards to focus both on other projects and real life stuff. My journey through the second half of season 5 has already been rather slow for both these reasons, which is why I want to begin analyzing season 6 with a refreshed mindset. I just figured I’d let you know.
Season 5 Episode 25: The Cutie Re-Mark, Part 1
In five words: Starlight Glimmer rampages across time.
Premise: Thirsty for revenge, Starlight Glimmer sends Twilight Sparkle and Spike on a chase through alternate timelines where villains took over Equestria—all by interfering with the day the Mane 6 got their cutie marks.
This dramatic two-part episode starts off as innocuous as any season finale would: with Twilight Sparkle rehearsing a speech to Celestia’s School for Gifted Unicorns, while Spike jabs at her for perfectionism. As you should already know, this is all part of the setup.
The speech itself starts off as a recap of cutie mark lore, attended by a bunch of familiar faces, and… wait just a minute, Twilight Sparkle. That is not how Venn diagrams work! The intersections between two circles show common traits between whichever entities the circles represent. If you are to read this diagram logically, it tells us that Sweetie Belle has both her own cutie mark and Scootaloo’s, Scootaloo has hers and Apple Bloom’s, and Apple Bloom has hers and Sweetie Belle’s. The only correct part of this diagram is the tricolored shield in the center, which is something that all three Cutie Mark Crusaders’ marks share.
Time to begin analyzing season 4 of MLP:FiM! As I’ve said before, this is the only season that I followed live as it was happening, making it distinct from all the others in my mind. My reviews of these episodes therefore may read a little differently from the rest, with more commentary on how it felt watching them for the first time.
If you’re wondering how season 4 will be divided into posts, my tentative plan is to keep things simple and do two episodes per post all the way through, making part 41 the end of season 4. But it’s entirely possible that I’ll have enough to say about a certain episode that I’ll give it a post to itself, and in that case, I would also have to pick another episode to dedicate an entire post to, because there’s no way I’m squeezing three episodes into one post again. My episode reviews have become too detailed and thorough for that to be viable.
Season 4 Episode 1: Princess Twilight Sparkle, Part 1
This review discusses events up to early season 6—modest as far as spoilers go, but spoilers no less.
In five words: Twilight Sparkle adapts to change.
Premise: Now that the dust has settled, Twilight Sparkle must learn all the responsibilities that come with being a princess as a new threat closes in on Equestria.
Season 4 of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic immediately kicks off with showing a ramification of Twilight Sparkle becoming an alicorn princess that’s far less peachy and perfect than what we saw in the last few minutes of Magical Mystery Cure. Specifically, Twilight Sparkle clumsily practices flying with Rainbow Dash serving as her coach. This scene sets the tone for season 4’s overarching arc: the challenges Twilight Sparkle faces in her newfound princess role. It’s an arc whose handling thoroughly exceeded my expectations as I watched through season 4’s episodes week by week. I was so worried that the Twilight Sparkle we know and love would be overwritten with merch-driven princess shenanigans, but this opening scene already shows us this won’t be the case. Magical Mystery Cure is done and squared, so now we can go back to regular old MLP:FiM. And let me tell you, few things bring me more consistent joy and delight than regular old MLP:FiM.
To hammer in that this is still going to be the same show that bronies love so much, we get a silly little slapstick sequence where Twilight Sparkle flaps her wings too hard, loses control, and lands on a tree branch with googly eyes. This sequence serves a similar purpose to doors slamming Spike in the face shortly after the expository scene that opens the first episode: it tells viewers that this show will be far more than girly ponies doing girly pony things, and it’ll be filled with tons of slapstick and other such humor. In this case, the scene reinforces that the regular lighthearted tone of this show isn’t going anywhere, which was very reassuring to a random 14-year-old boy who was excitedly watching the premiere of the show’s fourth season and would later become the person who is writing the words you’re reading. And now here I am, not far off from turning 23 years old, analyzing the impact of this scene in far more depth than is probably necessary, all because this show is extremely super special and important to me.
But I probably shouldn’t waste too much time reflecting on memories that feel like a lifetime ago and then some. I probably sound like I’m clouded by childhood nostalgia here, but believe me, I love this show just as much as an adult as I did when I was a young teenager.
Before I begin, I’m going to explain how these posts reviewing every episode of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic will be organized and scheduled. Hopefully this statement will make me come across as a bit less of a lunatic than if I just dived right in.
Organization: Each post will cover two to three episodes, depending on how much I have to say about the episodes covered. This division means that each season will be divided into anywhere between 9 and 13 posts, except for season 3 which is half as long as each of the others, and thus will take up about half as many posts.
Schedule: My current plan is for these posts to be weekly, coming out every Friday at 9:00 AM EST. Unlike with prior post series of mine, these will work under a scheduled queue system, allowing me to work on them at what should be a reasonable pace and perhaps even mitigating the lengthy pauses my creative projects tend to run into.
Now let’s begin!
Season 1 Episode 1: Friendship Is Magic, Part 1
(Yes, I know it’s capitalized “Friendship is Magic” in the title card, but I consider it proper formatting to capitalize all verbs in titles, even short ones like “is”. Despite this, I’m very much used to typing the show’s acronym as MLP:FiM with a lowercase i.)
In five words: A fairly typical first episode.
Premise: Twilight Sparkle, along with her sidekick Spike, is sent to Ponyville and meets the rest of the show’s main cast. You know, the usual first episode.