Hello & welcome back to Trotting Through Life.  And well, it’s the 100th episode of MLP. That episode was insane but before I get started,  I want to address  something within the Brony community. Something that my good pal, The Second Opinion did a good job parodying.  Some fans as of late have been leaving the show and  certain pony analysts (I never understood, why they don’t just call themselves reviewers) have admitted that they were never actually interested in reviewing MLP and only did their videos or  their series for the fame and the revenue that the subject of MLP would bring in.   Look, to a certain degree I get that because when I started Trotting Through Life, I had a feeling that it was going to be popular but it was never my intent to write MLP blogs just come to become popular.  Heck, bloggers have a hard enough time  becoming popular compared to their video reviewer counterparts but that’s besides the point.  If fame and fortune are all you seek  from  producing blogs or videos about anything,  then I feel like your’e  heart isn’t  in it and I cant’  trust your word on this subject any longer.   And those  of you that follow the pony analyst scene should pick up on who I’m referring to.

 

 

And also  referring to this unnamed “analyst”,   I believe that  he was just feeling burn out and growing tired of the show. And look I get both of those and hey, I’m not one to talk as I haven’t reviewed a single episode of season 5 but the thing is that Trotting was always more of a side project to my other series but I have written two blogs fro Trotting and one of them was about season 5.  And instead of doing an episode review, I looked at what made Starlight Glmmer, a great villain.  And look even though,  I did a slew of season 4 episodes with The Second Opinion, last year.  It was never my intent for this blog to be episodic reviews of the series. I did that last year because it was something new at the time and  I wanted to see what it was like to do that many cross overs with someone else. And hey, I had a blast.

I guess what I’m getting at here is that while not everyone will find ways to keep their interest going in MLP,  I at least try to find new ways to enjoy it.  And I talk about it because I genuinely love the show and love hearing what other fans have to say.  Look, I know I’ll never make it onto Equestira Daily but that’s not my goal here. Though, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little jealous, when I saw The Second Opinion featured on there but I quickly got over that and felt happy for him.  Me, I’m  just out to put a smile on my face talking about a show I love. And if others love reading what I have to say, great.   After this lengthy opening, have a cute picture of Lyra and Fluttershy.

Now, let’s get to the mane attraction. The 100th episode.  This thing was crazy.

Episode Title


Slice of Life

I love this episode title as it is just one of a plethora of references to both the show and the fandom as the show is known for it’s typical slice of life episodes.  And for the most part,  this did feel like a slice of life episode. Just a rather crazy one and I  couldn’t have had more fun with this episode than I already did.


Where do I even begin? Okay, I did have my reservations going into this episode as while I like background ponies, I tune into  the show to see the Mane Six. And I was still hesitant as the episode started but I was won over, when I saw Derpy giving Cranky Doodle a basket of muffins as an apology for getting the date wrong on the invitations for his and Matilda’s wedding. But then I was really with it, when I saw Lyra and Bon Bon.  Because throughout all the trailers, I didn’t see anything of Lyra.   And well, I was easily won over because I remembered how much I love Lyra.



So yeah,  maybe I’m a little too easy to please but I didn’t know what to expect with an episode focusing solely on background ponies but oh my gosh,  this was a roller coaster ride of awesomeness (Side note, why isn’t there an MLP theme park or land?)    Okay,  I’ll go over the basic plot but this is one time, where plot doesn’t really matter.    Let’s begin.

The Plot

I’m sure like a lot of fans, I was wondering how the show was going to get all of these background ponies together in one place. And well, a wedding in the long run made perfect sense.  We open at Cranky Doodle’s cabin as Matilda is going through scrapbooks featuring the lovely two.  It’s nice to see these two again as they’ve mostly been relegated to cameos.    Cranky returns from a day of shopping and mentions that everyone was asking him, if he was nervous about the wedding.  Even though, the wedding isn’t for another day.  However, Matilda discovers that there is a misprint and Cranky goes to confront the culprit in one of the most adorable scenes ever.

Just the sight of Derpy  with a bag of muffins is just so cute and then we get to the episode proper. And oh my gosh,  there is something in here for every Brony.   Let’s start with the pairings, you’ve got Derpy and The Doctor,  I know  quite few Bronies on ME will be happy about that, Lyra and Bon Bon, which made me so happy and Vinyl and Octi.     And one of the things that made this episode work were the pairings as it broke the episode up into little vignettes. Start with Derpy and The Doctor, you  clearly saw how much these two care for one another and I almost want to see an entire canon store starring these two. And I guess as a non-Whoivan, this is my favorite incarnation of The Doctor.  And seriously, his lab was awesome and you could just feel the size of it.  It felt so big.

And even if,  he was nothing more than a homage to Doctor Who, Doctor Whooves  still felt approachable to me as someone that is not immersed in that fandom because of how likable he was and  just how fun, they made him.   Though, I will say I was a little lost during the bowling alley scene, which was a giant Big Lebowski reference (Sorry OtherDude, I’ve never seen it).   The Dude Pony though was cool.  What lost me however was The Doctor breaking down the mathematics to get a strike.   For any Whoivans, this is something The Doctor is known to do?

Though I do have to admit that I loved how he got there was by following Vinyl to the bowling alley and playing as the 4th member for the Lebowski ponies.  That was cool!    Meanwhile, the Mane Six are dealing with a monster attack from a bugbear.  (Did the writers watch The Wuzzles before writing this episode?) And that’s where we get one of my favorite moments.

Octavia Melody: Do we know what they’re on about?
Apple Bloom: The way they’re huddled up like that, I’d say it’s either a friendship problem or a monster attack.
Octavia Melody: A monster attack?! Blast! I’m performing at the ceremony this afternoon, and I still haven’t sorted out what to play. How am I meant to practice with a monster invading Ponyville?
Sweetie Belle: Maybe it’s just a friendship problem, and it’ll all be cleared up in half an hour or so.
Octavia Melody: [groan] I hope so.

My favorite part being this…

 it’ll all be cleared up in half an hour or so.

That line got me laughing me pretty hard as I loved that the show referenced it’s usual length-time.   And it’s during this time that Matilda  has to find a new party planner as Pinkie is a bit busy with the bugbear.  And   And  she turns to Amethyst Star, who apparently was the best organizer in Ponyville before Twilight came along. This line made me feel a little bad for her as Amethyst is up there with Lyra as one of my favorite BG ponies but she doesn’t get a lot of love from the fandom. And she only got one moment but it was sweet enough. This is when we lead into the moment of the episode that had me going “Wait… What?”  Apparently, at Town Hall, Lyra and Bon Bon are decorating for wedding and we learn that they’ve been best friends for a long time.   Bon Bon asks what is happening outside and she mentions the bugbear attack.   And here Bon Bon reveals that she is actually Secret Agent Sweetie Drops and had been tasked with capturing the bugbear until it escaped from Tartarus (Or y’know Hell).   Lyra is visibly upset   at this revelation and feels as though their friendship had been based on a lie but  Sweetie Drops,  Bon Bon (If that’s what Lyra calls her, then so shall I!)  assures that their friendship was real.

Okay, so did the writers also watch Men In Black before writing this episode because Bon Bon here was giving me  a Men In Black-esque vibe.   I’d say it was the most random  thing in the episode but we all know, that isn’t the case as this episode was just full of completely random moments.  Meanwhile, while  our newly revealed secret agent goes off to fight the bugbear, we see Matilda at the spa getting all fancied up for her big wedding as she meets her fiancee’s best man,  Steven Magnet. AKA The Sea Serpent from Friendship Is Magic Pt. 2

Okay, gotta be honest here and say this was the one thing in the episode that I really didn’t like.    Not the interaction between Matilda and Steven but I could just never buy into Steven and Cranky being friends and even though, this episode was filled to the brimstone with a lot of fan moments,  this to me felt too fan-ficcy.  Yes, even more than Bon Bon being a secret agent.  The idea of them being buddies just never gelled with me.

The next  moment is something that I’m sure a lot of fans loved and I cannot do it justice, so just watch it.

This scene was in a word…

And this continues the trend of awesome references as  we see the Scepter,  Button Mash,  The Pony Obsessed With Tubs of Jelly, and The Flashy Pony from The Perfect Stallion.

And then we get a great Gummy moment.

“Is it nothing more than the endless search for a cutie mark? And what is a cutie mark but a constant reminder that we’re all only one bugbear attack away from oblivion?” “And what of the poor gator? Flank forever blank, destined to an existential swim down the river of life to… an unknowable destiny?”

More moments like this please.  So, we finally make it to the wedding and get some cute bickering between the sisters. See Steven help Cranky out with his hair problem with a sweet callback to the first episode of the series.  But I really want to touch on Mayor Mare’s speech.

It’s remarkable to me how a story like Cranky’s search for Matilda could fill this room with such a unique collection of ponies! It makes you realize that everypony is the star of their own story. And it’s not just the main characters in our stories that make life so rich! It’s everypony – those who play big parts and those who play small. If it weren’t for everypony in this room and many more who couldn’t be here today, Cranky and Matilda’s lives wouldn’t be as full and vibrant as they are.

I loved this speech and in a way, it’s why I decided to open this review with that lengthy opening addressing the Brony fandom.  There is so much love within this fandom that I never want any of my readers to forget that what I say comes from a place of genuinely caring about the show and the fans. And just like with the Mane Six and the background ponies,  you have people within the fandom that have a larger role than others and that’s okay. And heck,  this is coming from someone that is at best a background pony in this fandom and I’m okay with that. Because I know that through my interaction with other fans that love this show,  my joy of the show well, it can be summed as this…

 

And if I’m to be honest,  my getting into this show happened by accident.  I’ve told this story before but the only reason, I’ve ever became a fan of MLP is because one year while putting up Christmas decorations, I was looking for Christmas episodes to watch and just happened to come across Hearth’s Warming Eve. I never had any intention of becoming such the huge fan I am today but as I type this I sit here looking at my figures of Fluttershy and Trixie from Funko and my Rarity figure that came with the Rainbow power set that included her, Applejack, Twilight Sparkle,  Vinyl and Doctor Whooves that I got for my birthday. Who are all on my bookcase and next to them are my Happy Meal figures of Princess Twilight and EQG Twilight that I bought after seeing Age of Ultron. All of these are in here because  yes partly I like having MLP merchandise but also because I am a fan and being a fan of My Little Pony has opened doors to other facets of nerdom, I may not have other touched before.  It’s because of My Little Pony, that I started reading comic books. Again,  I want  to state that I love everything about this show and all of the opportunities that it has given me.   I’m glad I turned on that episode as it led me down a path that I’ve loved.
Characters
 
 
Just to make this easier on myself, I’m gonna be grouping the characters in the pairs that they were in. With that out of the way, let’s begin.
Cranky & Matilda  voiced by  Richard Newman & Brenda Crichlow
The set up for this episode being their wedding was such a great idea as it allowed the writers to give the episode,  such a big feel.  And I just loved seeing the interaction between these two as it was so adorable. And you could feel the love that they had for one another.
The Doctor & Derpy  Muffins voiced by Peter New &   Tabitha St. Germain
As I mentioned up-top,  I appreciated how approachable The Doctor was in this special to a non-Who fan. Of course, I did pick up some of the references to my fellow Expressionists that are fans of Doctor Who but even as a character on his own, he was one of the most enjoyable characters in the entire episode, even if some of the references went over my head.  And as for Derpy, you may have noticed that they changed her name to Muffins.  And well,  I like it better than Derpy.  Derpy isn’t a bad name but I don’t know, something about that name just never sat well with me. And Muffins is just a cuter name in general.
Lyra & Bon Bon voiced by  Ashleigh Ball & Andrea Libman
Easily, my favorite part of the episode. I loved the interaction between these two.  And between this and their cameo in Rainbow Rocks, I couldn’t be happier about what they’ve given these two.
Was the spy thing, a little absurd?  If you have to ask that question, you clearly weren’t paying attention.  As this episode is full to wall-to-wall absurdity.  And I loved every moment of it. Oh, and as a Lyra, I’d be remiss if I didn’t post this.
Just THANK YOU for this!
Octavia  & Vinyl Scratch voiced by  Kasumi Evans & Unvoiced
These two easily had one of the best moments in the entire episode.  And I know some people don’t like that Vinyl didn’t talk. Well, I’ve kinda taken it as that she communicates through music.   And just like with Lyra and Bon Bon, the friendship between these two felt so real and as though, they’d been friends for years.
Steven Magnet voiced by Lee  Tockar
This is the only thing in the episode that I couldn’t buy into. I don’t know why but my brain could take Steven and Cranky as being friends. I think because that pairing is just too random, even if we didn’t see it onscreen.   At best, this is a minor complaint but it’s just something that I couldn’t buy into.
My Final Thoughts
 
 
I love this episode, I love this show, I love this fandom. I can’t put it any other way than that.  This episode is a great reminder of all the joy that I’ve gotten from MLP since I’ve started watching it and that in turn translates into the joy, I get from talking with other fans online about the show or writing Trotting Through Life blogs, whether it be a look at a character, a review of a comic book or a piece of a fan fiction or fan-animation.  I think “Friendship Through The Ages” can sum up my feelings pretty well here.

Things may come and things may go
Some go fast and some go slow
Few things last, that’s all I know
But friendship carries on through the ages

This show has given me another outlet of media to discuss with my friends and whether it be The Second Opinion, Les or anyone else, I always love talking about this show and sharing our love of it. And  I feel as though that this show has allowed us to talk about things in a friendly way.   And I’ve had discussions that I may never have had before and heck,  I pretty much became friends with The Second Opinion because of My Little Pony.  Back when he was still From The Files of A Non-Brony as a blog on the old Manic Expression,   I commented on just about every one and through that, we teamed up for cross over reviews of season 4. And had some of the most entertaining moments together.    I can’t say much more than that this show and the people I know that love this show make my day a little better, when I get to share my thoughts on it with them.  To all my Brony and Pegasister friends, just take this as virtual hoofbump.  Peace!

By Moviefan12

Disney Geek, Oncer, Brony, and Expressionist

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