My Little Rambling #75: Catching Up on Season Five: My Thoughts So Far
Since I haven’t been able to get a new article out in a while, I’ll summarize my thoughts on each episode that’s aired in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic’s fifth season so far. Next week I plan to get back to summarizing and giving my thoughts on each new episode. Warning: there will be spoilers.
Episodes 92 and 93: “The Cutie Map, Part 1 and 2”
I thought this was an inventive way to kick off the newest season. It’s not every day that a show like this addresses the concept of living in an Orwellian “utopia” where mindless equality reigns supreme and no one is free to question it. It was a genuinely disturbing concept of a place to live, where the concept of “equality” overtakes the reality that everyone has unique talents. The concept made me think about cutie marks differently: I always assumed that they were just aesthetic representations of what a pony was meant to do in life. For example, I thought that Applejack got her country-isms and powerful apple-bucking skills from her own abilities: not from her apple cutie mark.
Episode 94: “Castle Sweet Castle”
This episode managed to be both fun and emotional, with Twilight’s friends decorating the castle for her while she dealt with the reality that her library was gone forever. I was a lot more compelled by Twilight’s coping experience than the expected disagreements that her friends had while decorating. I was really happy that their chandelier solution made Twilight happy enough to cry and embrace her friends, even though I thought it was kind of a strange idea to hang teeny-tiny pictures on the roots of a tree stump suspended high above.
Episode 95: “Bloom & Gloom”
I’ve always found it really unsettling to not know whether you’re dreaming or awake, and I thought this episode did a great job of conveying that. It’s understandable that Apple Bloom feels anxiety about what her cutie mark will turn out to be, and since she’s young and still learning, it makes sense that she would have some really irrational fears. Plus, it was nice to see Princess Luna return, again dispensing helpful advice to guide a Cutie Mark Crusader.
Episode 96: “Tanks for the Memories”
I liked how this episode managed to address the issue of coping with loss, but without killing off a character. Rainbow Dash’s exaggerated reaction to Tank’s impending hibernation was understandable, though it really brought out my least favorite personality traits of hers: her extreme immaturity and stubbornness that eventually led to her knowingly causing a catastrophe. Despite that, it’s clear that Rainbow cares dearly for her pet, and I’m glad she learned her lesson that nature needs to take its course. I can only imagine how gripping this episode would be if she really had to deal with her pet’s death. Maybe this episode was testing the waters for genuinely addressing the topic someday: even kid-oriented shows like Sesame Street (“Goodbye Mr. Hooper”) and Rugrats (“I Remember Melville”) have touched on that usually taboo subject and had truly moving results.
Episode 97: “Appleoosa’s Most Wanted”
I thought this episode was all right: not really spectacular. I definitely sympathized with Trouble Shoes for being misunderstood and regarded as a loser for his extreme clumsiness. The episode did get kind of predictable toward the end, and as for Trouble Shoes finding his “calling” as a rodeo clown… I guess it’s good that he found a use for his disability, but at the same time it seems kind of depressing that it appears that’s all he’s useful for. At least I’m glad that the Cutie Mark Crusaders got punished for wandering off into the woods yet again (seriously: how many times will they have to do that before learning their lesson?)
Episode 98: “Make New Friends but Keep Discord”
Just as I expected from a Discord episode, this one was really fun with its many references and overall vibrant presentation. In addition to Discord stealing the show, characters like Maud Pie, Princess Celestia and newcomers the Smooze (who originally appeared in a different form in Generation 1) and Tree Hugger managed to be really entertaining in their own ways. Though it initially may not have seemed like the best decision to invite Discord to the Grand Galloping Gala, it was a great choice on Celestia’s part, in a move that also shows her fun-loving side.
Episode 99: “The Lost Treasure of Griffonstone”
It was interesting to ponder how Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash would help the barren and hopeless Griffonstone (the atmosphere was pulled off well.) Though the Idol of Boreas wasn’t recovered, Pinkie hopefully has the right idea about friendship being the key to turning things around (still, seeing it recovered someday would bring some closure, considering that it does have strong significance.) Considering how sour an impression Gilda left on her debut “Griffon the Brush Off,” I was kind of dreading her return. Thankfully, it looks like she finally took a turn for the better, and knowing that, it provides some relief when watching her original appearance, knowing she’ll eventually turn out better.
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