Saturday Synopsis: Twilight Time

[Mando touching himself in the distance]
Saturday has arrived, and a new episode along with it. Today's is a Cutie Mark Crusader episode, so if you expected this one to be good, you're a bigger moron than MLP Critic. And it... The episode... Dagnabbit, I can't do it. I'm taking a nice long nap. Capper, you're up.

Current best link to this episode is here.
(the sound of fading grumbling)

Okay so we put Grandpa in bed and decided to continue on without him as best we can. He was as underwhelmed by this episode as most people were. It reminded fans all over what "mediocre" truly means. Nothing really outstanding happens in the grand scheme of the season, but they did use the opportunity to inch some character progress into the plot.

The episode begins with the Cutie Mark Crusaders hanging out at Twilight's home (which it's status as a public library is called into question by this episode),  and Twilight coaching the girls into learning "new skills". In reality, this is the most important aspect of Twilight Time as it is largely the first time we see the CMC working towards a skill, rather than blindly attempting random activities to see if they are talented at them. Apple Bloom is attempting to cook meth with Twisenberg perfect a plant-growth potion. This is a big step forward, and a hint towards a future talent that many have assumed for quite some time; that Apple Bloom's talent will have to do with cultivating crops and mixing potions. It is hardly the first time she has shown an interest in chemicals, as we have seen her interactions with Zecora. She still isn't very good at it at the start of the episode, but as is the case with most things the CMC attempt, she isn't even paying attention to the directions.

The result of this is the "My Little Shop of Horrors" plant you see here. Scootaloo is attempting to assemble a unicycle, again without the instructions, and Sweetie Belle is going full Luke Skywalker, trying to lift small objects with her magic, and struggling with it. Spike shows up to progress the plot and then it's time for the theme song. The only other important note from the first few minutes is actually a small detail in the background, in which we see a blueprint diagram of the Ring Pop mystery box from the season premier.

Clearly PRINCESS Twilight Sparkle has been hard at work doing...something with it. Taped to the bottom of her Blueprint is a chart that appears to be diagrams of potential key shapes. 9 of them. Also the top of the box is shown in detail, with an 8-pointed star, as opposed to the 6-pointed stars we are accustomed to in most other circumstances. On the episode goes. So little happens that qualifies as interesting or worth-while that we can run through a good portion of the episode in a few sentences.

Pip is back. Hooray Pip.

Rich Bitch Diamond Tiara has a butler. He does tricks for the amusement of children and is treated like Spike shit. Diamond Tiara asks Sweetie Belle if Rarity is going to be taking her to Manehattan anytime soon -building on the recent episode where Rarity agrees to take on a big dressmaking project that will keep her in Manehattan more. So more continuity there, we may even see Coco Pommel again soon.

School girls want to be popular. Shocker.

There's a Futurama cameo...and that's pretty much all the important things until this happens.

Princess Twilight, gobbling down, her face buried in a Big Mac, getting a little red between the buns.
Why is this important? Well first off its the first time we're aware of a "fast food" style restaurant in Ponyville. Second, we've never seen Twilight eat like this before. Pinkie makes a brief appearance. But most of all is Twilight's response to the crowd of children. Earlier in the episode Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon acted all excited to be hanging out with Twilight, but Twilight dismissed their behavior, probably as little more than enthusiastic politeness. Prior to the meeting DT and SS rattled off all the responses to Twilight's new-found "Local Alicorn Princess" status that we would have expected to see...12 or 13 episodes ago. Thusfar the only acknowledgement to her status this season has been from her friends (especially Rarity), Discord a few times, her fellow alicorns, and in one moment in episode 1, from the frightened townsfolk in search of a defacto-leader.  Today, Twilight had every child in Ponyville asking for her autograph.

It's what's on the OTHER side of the paper that concerns her.
In this moment, Twilight's response is perfect, as she seems genuinely bewildered that anyone would think of her as a celebrity. But that's because...nobody HAS so-far. This is really the first time since the coronation over a year ago that we see this kind of fan-fare for her royal highness. Events continue to escalate as the CMC ride Twilight's coattails into popularity, until the peasants storm the Bastille kids finally demand to be with their beloved Princess.

Zombies WOULD have been more compelling.
Everything comes to a head when the fillies and colts bumrush Twilight Time, expose the CMC for what they've been doing (which is mostly Sweetie Belle's fault), and Twilight makes them earn their lesson about earning what they get and not expecting handouts. Spike is still treated like garbage, when he is sent to the kitchen to make nachos for the hoard of students who had only just now seen books for the first time.

Hang in there Spike.
The CMC then, true to form, put on a show to get them out of their mess, as they attempt to show Twilight what they have learned from her. Scootaloo disassembles and reassembles Pip's Scooter, Sweetie Belle levitates a broom, and Apple Bloom actually makes an apple grow enormous...before of course they all fall apart and explode. Hanging their heads in shame, they go to leave and lament their failures, somehow managing to succeed where they had just failed at in the process. The CMC made actual, measurable progress towards their futures over the course of an episode (Sweetie Belle's voice even cracked...puberty on the way?), and Twilight had to deal with her public image in the first truly noticeable way. These were all things that had to happen, and the episode treated it that way, as a chore and little more. It wasn't a bad episode, merely a necessary episode. Hopefully it is merely a speedbump on the road to better things.
A vote following the episode ranks it as the least enjoyed of the season. 
How'd we do Grumpy?

"Best anyone could get out of that episode." - Grumpy Old Fart

Comments (12)

  1. What a damn boring episode. Like Polsky tried to write something out of his comfort zone and got lost, and wrote something with neither highs nor lows.

  2. Honestly, maybe all of you guys's expectations are a still a lil bit too high here.
    I mean, do you want a climactic boss-fight or mind-blowing revelations every episode now?
    Sereiously, what do you people WANT from this series anymore?!

    Personally, i enjoyed the episode thoroughly.
    There were no cringe-worthy moments whatsoever and the pacing was just fine (unlike castle Mane-ia)
    Oh, and also Spike actually EMOTED right at the end there ...with, you-know actual feelings of frustration.
    Like, e-gads! I was beginning to think Twilight had him lobotomized or something. *gough**cough*

    1. Note that the article calls it "mediocre". It wasnt bad, but it certainly wasnt better than other episodes this season, it was just "okay".

  3. This article was SATISFACTORY
    Best anyone could make out of this episode anyway.

  4. I liked the part when it ended.

    1. Would chuckle again m8, tx for the comment

  5. Forgettable, though not as bad as the previous CMC episode. At least twilight eating ameriburgers was entertaining

  6. Average episode. Really not much else to it. "Necessary" was the perfect word to describe it.
    I just wish they could have thrown a few more gags in there to at least make the journey a little bit more entertaining.

  7. Seeing a lot of neckbeards chiming in here.

    1. >pot calling teakettle a nigger

  8. First time I skipped an entire episode because I was bored to death 5 min in