Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Picking Apart "My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic", Season 4 Episode 17

WARNING!  From this point onward, the following reviews will consist of using EXTREME profanity.  It is advised not to proceed past this point unless you are 21 years of age or older.  Profanity will be used to express personal opinions only, so there can be no one responsible if anyone is immensely offended because you have been warned.  If you can handle large quantities of profanity and you're ready to proceed, by all means do so, but of course at your own risk.

"I used to wonder what friendship could be; until I surpassed those who first showed it to me."

- Russet Burbanks,

Yes, people.  This episode is not only bad, but in my opinion, it is by far the most ANNOYING form of shit I have ever seen in any animated cartoon period!  In fact, it's so bad, that even having it be written by another newcomer writer to the staff doesn't do it justice.  Now I know I already went there with Ed Valentine on "Flight to the Finish", so maybe I should be sensing a pattern.
I mean, last I checked, the only new writer to the team who actually did very well was Corey Powell with "Sleepless in Ponyville", which actually kicked some legitimate ass!  But what do we get in Season 4 with new writers?

The lowest form of shit I have ever seen in cartoons.  And considering that only the animation in this series is standing out above everything else, it's kind of sad.  So, what kind of horror did newcomer Scott Sonneborn bring to the table of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic?  I'll tell you.  "Somepony to Watch Over Me".

I mean, this is bad.  Really, really, really bad.  It's one of the worst, and most annoying, episodes I've ever had to deal with.  And the numero uno factor that ultimately made it bad was that the character Applejack was just at her absolute worst.  There is no other episode I can possibly imagine in which I have ever disliked Applejack more than this.  And coming from a guy who used to actually like her back when she was first introduced in Season 1 and brought some legitimate humor in "Applebuck Season", that should be saying something.  This is by far Applejack's... Worst.  Performance.  EVER.  Believe me, it pained me to have to hate Applejack at this point and deem her from going to a decent and likeable character to one of the worst characters in the entire series, but seeing her in this episode just sealed the fact in stone.  Applejack sucks.

And seeing how it's close to Halloween of 2014, let's see how many of you get a good scare from how bad I think this episode this.  So let's get this hellhole over with.  This is "Somepony to Watch Over Me", written by Scott Sonneborn.

We begin with Applejack, Big Macintosh, and Granny Smith all agreeing to allow Apple Bloom to watch over the farm by herself and handle all the responsibilities... after a three-minute debate.  Apparently, the adults all have to make special trips involving pie deliveries and I guess that normally Apple Bloom would accompany one of them, except that there's the possibility that the farm needs looking after on the exact same day.
Apparently, Big Mac and Granny are perfectly confident with this, but Applejack for some reason is not.  I honestly don't know what gets into her, but good God, she's a dumbass in this episode and I'll prove it to you.

So Apple Bloom is left in charge of the farm temporarily.  Big whoop, right?

And being the good and honest little filly she is, she gets all the chores done, just as Applejack requested, first and foremost.  Guess she really wants some downtime all to herself.
But while this is going on, Applejack continues to fret and moan over ever little worst-case scenario that could possibly happen.  And to prove she's a dumbass in this episode, she decides to postpone her important delivery just so she can check up on Apple Bloom.  Can't see anything wrong going here.

I mean, look.  Even Big Mac knows it's not gonna end well.

And sure enough, while Apple Bloom decides to fix herself something to eat, Applejack bursts in on the scene, startling Apple Bloom so much that the table collapses and the pasta that Apple Bloom intended to eat ends up on her head.

What a fucking good waste of pasta!  Fuck you, Applejack!


So yeah, you can imagine what happens next.

What a pain.  Now I have to be honest here.  To Applejack's credit, when she's breathing down Apple Bloom's neck, she's not actually yelling at her or scolding her or anything like that.  She's actually treating her little sister like... more like a foal than a filly.  Or rather more like a little daughter instead of a little sister.  And this easily comes across as such based on those fucking lame lines of dialogue she has.  It turns out, it's a lot more scarier than just getting scolded at.  Let's hear some of these lines again in...

Try as Apple Bloom might to show Applejack that she's capable, Scott Sonneborn decided he wanted to fuck around with Apple Bloom (like that's new) and just makes sure she gets into mishap after mishap.

I mean, all that's really going on is that Apple Bloom is getting into a sticky mess, which she's probably capable of cleaning up herself since she was able to wash a pig clean before, but no, Applejack decides to pamper her little baby daughter by smothering her with unnecessary affection.  And this goes on for the longest time in the episode!

Not only that, but good God, Applejack is now literally stalking her own sister and even stopping her from trying to prove herself!  It's like Applejack has degraded herself into a mother hen!

And back at the farm, Applejack has literally child-proofed everything and for the umpteenth time, Apple Bloom tries to explain to her that she's better than this, but she just lets the words bounce right off her fucking anus that deserves to be raped!

Good God, It's like watching those old Burger King Big Kids Meal commercials!

And please, I dare you to tell me that even for an older sister, caressing Apple Bloom's... rear end isn't suggestive.  Seriously, this isn't funny!  This is totally fucked up!

Okay, if Applejack has degraded herself to this level, why the hell did she agree with Big Mac and Granny Smith to leave Apple Bloom home alone to begin with?!  If she was so concerned, why would she have even agreed?  She could have argued with them and hired Rarity or Twilight or whoever to watch over Apple Bloom.  I can understand her getting nervous and all that because it would be Apple Bloom's first time on her own (fair enough), but if she decided that Apple Bloom still needs looking after as a fail-safe plan, why couldn't she just have hired one of her friends and carry on with her delivery?  This makes no sense!

One word to sum it all up, people...

So after Apple Bloom is placed in her crib for a bed, she calls on Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo for an emergency meeting.  Yeah, cause she needs saving before she dies of embarrassment or ends up smothered to death.  Either way, the three decide that they need to hatch a plan before things get worse.
Apple Bloom discovers that Applejack never made that pie delivery (seriously feeding the needy was less important than this?) and decides to do the honors herself.
So Sweetie Belle disguises herself as Apple Bloom using only a bow and sleeping on her side.  And Applejack apparently falls for it because she keeps coming back into the room to check on her 'little baby girl' every fucking five seconds!  I swear to fucking God, I am fucking dead serious.

Okay, at this point, I just have to bring up this TV Tropes quote (yeah, even TV Tropes gave their take on this) because Applejack is just so over the top, it's fucking scary.  So here it is.

"Did Applejack not have faith that Apple Bloom would be able to take care of herself on her own, or did her 'motherly instinct' tell her to always see Apple Bloom as a baby that needs protecting?" - TV Tropes

It's like Dr. Doofenshmirtz from Phineas and Ferb who just seems to picture Vanessa as a little girl instead of the goth teenage daughter she actually is.

Except this is ten times worse and not in any way humorous.  Like I said before, it's fucking scary.  How come no kid who saw this episode found this scary?  I mean, look at Applejack's face every time she pops up out of nowhere!  It's far worse than the evil eye!  Is she looking for an opportunity to sexually assault Apple Bloom or somehow have incest with her?

You know, to say I liked Applejack WAY better in "Applebuck Season"...  That's more than just an understatement.  Yes, she's THAT bad in this episode.

So anyway, while Apple Bloom is making the journey, back in her room, Applejack decides that Apple Bloom doesn't need pampering every five seconds (thank God), but with a hitch.  Scootaloo gives the game away and Applejack finds out that Apple Bloom struck out on her own.

Sorry Applejack, but my sympathy for you that I had back in Season 3 just does not exist anymore.  Granted that Apple Bloom certainly doesn't deserve to die, but you deserve to feel the pain, you big cunt.

Now it's nighttime and we see that Apple Bloom is traversing through... the Fire Swamp from The Princess Bride?

But she runs into a nasty denizen known as a chimera.  And anyone watching the episode can immediately tell it's a chimera because it's a composition of a few animals, particularly the three animal heads as portrayed in Greek mythology.  A goat, a snake, and of course...

Now even though the tiger head seems to sound a bit masculine, I assume that according to the credits, all three heads are voiced by Ellen Kennedy.  Yes, the voice of--

Apparently, the Chimera's only goal is to satisfy its empty belly while at the same time trying to overcome the constant bickering of its three heads.  So not only is Apple Bloom forced to make a run for it, but she's trying to keep the pie cart safe at the same time!

Just run, you little bitch!  Your life is on the line!  Fuck the pies!  Who cares if you're... trying to prove to your sister that... you don't need smothering from her... every five seconds...  I take it back.  Save the cart!

So the cart rolls down a small hill and somehow ends up safe in some nearby bushes, but the Chimera still longs for something to eat and decides to make minced meat out of Apple Bloom.  You know what I would have wanted to see?  What if Apple Bloom tricked the Chimera by luring it into one of those fire traps like in that scene from The Princess Bride and watch it burn?

That would have been awesome!

But instead, we get Applejack showing up like a crazed lunatic, which she pretty much has been this entire episode anyway...
...with all the necessary equipment she mentioned earlier and trapping the Chimera, leaving only its goat head some ricotta to munch on.  And what do you think Applejack says afterwards?

God, I never thought I'd be using this on Applejack, but given the circumstances...  God forgive me.

So as you can imagine, Apple Bloom has had enough and shows Applejack that she somehow kept the apple pie cart in tact.
So they reconcile and finish the delivery and Applejack comes to the conclusion that not only did Apple Bloom more than prove herself, but figured that she might have prompted Apple Bloom to run away to begin with.

Came to that conclusion by yourself, did you?  You brainless bitch.

Now granted she does mention that under normal circumstances that Granny Smith would ground her, but since neither her nor Big Mac are around, I'm guessing that no one gets punished for this.  But shit, what would Big Mac and Granny Smith say to Applejack for not trusting Apple Bloom?  I mean, Big Mac knew that Applejack went back to the farm, but we don't know if he brought it up with Granny Smith and if they settled things with Applejack.

Whew... there goes that episode.  Because good fucking GOD, it was one of the most painful episodes I ever had to watch.  And it still holds the record from my point of view for being the most ungodly annoying cartoon episode in the history of 2D animation!  Seriously, where was Scott Sonneborn when he was writing this?

Because of him and his first episode written for the series, Applejack's character has degraded to an all-time low, going from a genuinely likeable character to one of the worst characters in the entire series.

Honestly, in my opinion, I just can't find anything redeemable about this piece of shit.  Now I know that Applejack Appreciation Day exists on Equestria Daily and I'm guessing she's honored because she tends to be treated as a background character more often than not.  Fair enough, I suppose.  But after this episode, sadly, I have to disagree.  Applejack does not deserve an "Applejack Appreciation Day".  She doesn't deserve any recognition... well, not at this point, hell to the no.  And maybe she does actually deserve to be treated as a background character.  But don't take this the wrong way, folks.  Believe it or not, like I said at the beginning, it really pained me to have to declare Applejack to be one of the worst character in the series in my opinion, seeing how she started out okay in Season 1.  But seeing her get Flanderized, as the TV Tropes call it, it just makes me cry.

It's like the writers decided to make her one of those typical dumb blonde stereotypes or something.  I can't imagine why.  It's over the top, it's fucking ridiculous, it's fucking unfunny, and it's God-fucking scary to watch.  I just hope the next episode at least gives me something way more pleasant to look at.

...You know, I think I'm actually looking forward to that.  This is The Thunder, signing off.


  1. Well, at least we get a chimera, one of Greek Mythology's less appreciated monsters, except it's now part SABER-TOOTH TIGER instead of lion. Which is awesome.

  2. See, that's not exactly a factor that can save anything.