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36794776 No. 36794776
This thread is meant for discussing impressions on episode 504, Bloom and Gloom, written by Josh Haber, during and after it airs.

Be mindful of saying spoilers before they show up on TV. Until then, keep that sort of stuff in the Anticipation Thread.
107 posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 36794936
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It's from an episode Amy Rogers wrote. That much has been revealed.
>> No. 36794937
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well, it'll probably be a good one then; Rogers is probably the second best writer, after Larson. (she also seems to be the only one to do Pinkie really well too)
>> No. 36794938
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Let's look at other recurring villains this show has had...

Trixie: Runs away at the end of her episode, returns to do battle with Twilight and torment Ponyville.

Discord: Defeated, is brought back to be reformed but continues doing bad things and trying to manipulate Fluttershy, betrays the mane 6 and joins Tirek briefly.

Starlight Glimmer: Runs away at the end of her episode...returns to indoctrinate children under their families' noses?? Can you imagine how Applejack would have reacted if Starlight had actually gotten to Apple Bloom? That would be the real nightmare. And if Starlight kept that kind of thing up, Twilight's "mission to spread friendship" would turn into more of a mission to thwart Starlight's plans on a regular basis. And with that happening every few episodes, lighthearted slice of life episodes in between would start to feel out of place.
>> No. 36794939
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>she also seems to be the only one to do Pinkie really well too
Is NostalgiaSchmaltz asleep yet?
>> No. 36794940
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Dərpy Flukes.
>> No. 36794941
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>Can you imagine how Applejack would have reacted if Starlight had actually gotten to Apple Bloom?

IF though; this show tends to run on the heroes triumphing. If it were an attempt by another entity (like starlight) to indoctrinate Applebloom, it would still end on a very happy note so long as Luna caused her to shake it off, not unlike how the Villagers threw off starlight's attempts gave CM a cheerful ending.
>> No. 36794943
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OK, not even if she had succeeded. Just that she tried. I'm pretty sure that's still one of the biggest textbook "adult fears".
>> No. 36794944
This being the CMC we're talking about, I would expect they accidentally take over Starlight's cult about 5 minutes after joining.
>> No. 36794945
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I found applebloom's cutie mark of herself to be a better cutie mark personally XD


Hey, the show can do adult fear; Applebloom almost got herself eaten before wandering off like an idiot in STWOM and that wasn't that dark. (In fact, the chimera was the ONLY upside of that episode)
>> No. 36794946
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>that wasn't that dark
Because the chimera was a gag character. Starlight isn't.

Last edited at Sat, Apr 18th, 2015 21:59

>> No. 36794947
The little wink that it gave propelled the joke from "Kinda funny" to "fucking hilarious".
>> No. 36794948
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I wondered if maybe that wink was about brony recursive cutie mark comics/pics.

Last edited at Sat, Apr 18th, 2015 22:20

>> No. 36794949
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I don't think it was that comical. It still wanted to eat applebloom and was pretty evil looking.

SG trying to indoctrinate young ponies just doesn't seem that much darker than other things that have happened in the show.

/bro hoof, damn straight man!
>> No. 36794950
Also, Pinkie seems to be used for a lot more quick visual gags this Season. I do hope that's an actual trend, because that is a lot more funny than her random screeching of previous seasons.
>> No. 36794953
>Did Zecora never teach her anything?

Zecora taught her about potions; if I remember aright, TS was teaching her alchemy. Kind of like the difference between pharmacology and chemistry.
>> No. 36794955
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>writing Pinkie well
>> No. 36794957
I'm getting the impression that you're taking this character very personally.
>> No. 36794959
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>Zecora taught her about potions; if I remember aright, TS was teaching her alchemy.
They never called it alchemy, they said it was potion-making. And Twilight was specifically teaching her potion-making with the intent for her to know how to make potions.

Zecora had Apple Bloom fetch ingredients for a potion that she was making to help the mane six, and she explained her job in Cutie Pox, how she can make healing potions and how she was using the Heart's Desire plant for a potion for a crow. Apple Bloom may have made a potion in Zecora's house, but it did not come out well, and Zecora most certainly wasn't trying to teach how to make a potion nor did she approve of what Apple Bloom was trying to do.
>> No. 36794960
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I imagine Zecora is considerably better at potions than Twilight Sparkle. It only makes sense Apple Bloom would need to master the basics before getting into the advanced course. (Not to mention it's not particularly safe to make regular forays out into the Everfree Forest for no good reason.)

Last edited at Sun, Apr 19th, 2015 08:09

>> No. 36794961
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That's just how 441 is man.

Applebuck season, Best night ever and Last roundup were bad pinkies? Or bad IN GENERAL?

She did Bridle gossip, which is seen as one of the DEFINITIVE best scenes of pinkie yet, with her making Fluttershy do the stew song with her.


I doubt they'd ever use the word "alchemy" in show, simply because it sounds too exotic; you don't want to take the chance of some crazy soccer mom thinking its teaching kids witchcraft when "Potion making" is virtually the same.

Thinking about it, alchemy in the common mind isn't even proper alchemy, since people are just used to video game alchemy where its only for making potions instead of for trying to transmute objects.
>> No. 36794963
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Her S1 episodes were fine.

TLR was the first instance of Pinkie being obnoxiously lolrandumb. And just about every other AKR-written episode after that (in which Pinkie was not a major part of the story) featured that same "lolrandumb" Pinkie.

Worst offender being FV, where AKR claimed she enjoyed writing Pinkie that way. Doesn't exactly make me confident in future episodes.

It's not exactly that she's incapable of writing Pinkie well, it's just that she's the worst offender when it comes to "Pinkie getting flanderized and/or exaggerated because she's not the focus".

Last edited at Sun, Apr 19th, 2015 11:06

>> No. 36794965
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Pinkie's not been that bad this season, I'm willing to chalk that up to S4 issues with them trying to try and do some new things with Pinkie.

The premier was perfect pinkie with no screeching; so lets wait and see if AKR hasn't taken criticism over FV pinkie to heart. After all, the ONLY real criticism of AKR is pinkie screaming: Her depiction of other characters has still been perfect (TT123 for example hit the other non-pinkies perfectly)
>> No. 36794966
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CSC still featured a good bit of "lolrandumb" from her. Not on the level of FV, but still enough to be obnoxious.

I chalk that up as "new writers" though, because RD and Rarity felt off as well.
>> No. 36794968
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I will admit the last 2/3 did have her descend into screeching. but the first 1/3 of CSC was actually really good for her; the pancake gag was really funny, and they managed to make the spoon joke work without being obnoxious.
>> No. 36794981
Okay, so in my annoyance yesterday I'd completely forgotten about For Whom the Sweetie Belle Toils, which again deals with Luna interacting with a CMC member and helping them overcome a real world issue that's also affecting their dreams (and vice versa).

The thing is though, in both those episodes we have both the waking world where things actually matter and the dream world that provides a physical manifestation for Sweetie and Scootaloo's fears in a surreal and interesting ways. We get a little of that with the shadow in Bloom and Gloom, but we have to sludge through each one of Applebloom's scenarios first, none of which matter at all. She could have slayed Discord and become an alicorn and none of it matters. And the fix is so easy: just show her wake up for real and have others actually react to her growing anxiety.

This isn't some concept that was dead in the water like Spike at Your Service, we know Crusaders + Anxiety + Nightmare + Luna works. We have 2 episodes of that. But Haber's lazy writing destroys the execution.
>> No. 36794982
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But it's not really a problem that needs her to wake up. The problem was entirely mental, it wasn't something that had a real world issue like Scootaloo being afraid to sleep and Sweetie messing with Rarity's work, along with their relation to Rainbow Dash and Rarity respectively. Therefore it makes sense that it's entirely focused on just the dream if its an entirely mental thing.
>And the fix is so easy: just show her wake up for real and have others actually react to her growing anxiety.
Why would that fix things? It would show some effects on her physically to show that her worries are messing with her, but the growing surrealism in her dreams also exemplify they're wearing on her, just in a mental way which is what the problem mainly is, so taking breaks from the dreams wouldn't really add much to the story.

Last edited at Sun, Apr 19th, 2015 13:32

>> No. 36794983
But does anyone notice how Season 5 is beginning to develop a pattern where the first act is a solid - excellent start, before the second act does something not immersion killing (Season 3 and 4 are especially guilty of this), but determental to the episode as a whole, before recovering nicely in the 3rd act. Of course, these are first 2 episodes sandwiched in-between the book ends, so there's massive room for this to change, but it wouldn't surprise me if the majority of episodes end up like this.

As for Bloom and Gloom, this was better than I expected it to be. Over the past 5 years, Applebloom has ended up in an awful position, because Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo have actualy gotten personalities, while Applebloom is still largely a one-dimensional character, completely obsessed with her Cutie Mark. This episode actually tackles her obsession head on, and actually ends up putting Applebloom in a place for her to actually grow as a character.

However, the episode isn't without flaws. Just like Castle Sweet Castle, the episode is dragged down with head-scratching character writing. Not only do Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo are given an awkward transition when they kick Apple Bloom out of the CMC for getting her 2nd Cutie Mark, but Applejack's interaction with Applebloom can come off as inconsistent with other instances. Still, it's way better than what happened last season.

Really the final score for this episode will be determined by how Applebloom is written the rest of the season. If she's still stupidly obsessed with her Cutie Mark after this episode, then this will go down in the vein of many Season 4 episodes which ended up being utterly meaningless to the characters they were featuring.

Overall this makes 4 worthwhile episodes. Season 5 is not off to a bad start.

Last edited at Sun, Apr 19th, 2015 14:06

>> No. 36794984
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It's not bad character writing if it doesn't actually happen.
>> No. 36794985
Huh... you do have a point, the last episodes do seem to have ok beginnings, mediocre middles, and great ends. I do wonder if this is an actual trend as the writers decided to try a new method for this Season or just a funny coincidence.

>Not only do Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo are given an awkward transition when they kick Apple Bloom out of the CMC for getting her 2nd Cutie Mark, but Applejack's interaction with Applebloom can come off as inconsistent with other instances.
Keep in mind that all the characters that Apple Bloom meets up until the end are all figments of her imagination, and are more or less a representation of her fears and anxieties rather than actual ponies that she knows.
>> No. 36794986
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Yeah, I will admit that CSC had a rather mediocre middle ground when they slammed all their ideas together; it was really nice that it ended up managing to recover from that with the mane six realizing their mistake and taking steps to correct it. Reminds me somewhat of how in wonderbolts academy they stopped the "Dash can't come to terms with being the 2nd pony instead of the leader" and had her being mature about it instead of complaining for long.
>> No. 36794992

Dream-narratives have a problem in that anything can happen in a dream, and as Damon Knight put it: "if anything can happen, who gives a shit?" In addition, there's a deus-ex-machina problem with Luna coming in to stop the nightmare if the nightmare is the only thing going on. Both Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle had real-life issues with their surrogate and real-life big sisters that they had to resolve by themselves. Apple Bloom has no actual problems with Applejack or anyone else; she's freaking out over nothing, and when Luna comes in and says "Jan, cut the crap" that's pretty much the end of the episode.

Last edited at Sun, Apr 19th, 2015 17:45

>> No. 36794997
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>Dream-narratives have a problem in that anything can happen in a dream, and as Damon Knight put it: "if anything can happen, who gives a shit?"

That's an awfully pessimistic way to look at dream sequences.

>Luna comes in and says "Jan, cut the crap" that's pretty much the end of the episode

Might have been playing off of the whole "face your fears" thing from SiP. Sure, Luna could have just stepped in at any moment and ended the nightmare, but AB wouldn't have learned anything from that now would she? Something to that effect.
>> No. 36794998
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>> No. 36795000
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YES! You have no idea how okay I am with this comparison!
>> No. 36795014
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The ep made me think of several fan things, but oddly not that one... I can see how people got it, but it didn't strike me.
>> No. 36795091
Sorry I"m late on this. Was working and doing other stuff.

So then the start is a bit easy, nothing to really take note of that I can see aside from Applebloom's voice starting to sound a lot more mature.

0:55 Oh, this is interesting. A fear of the wrong cutie mark?

1:00 Most of her family? Who doesn't?

3:05 a light switch outside of the room?

Also, why does she have shuttered windows on the interior wall?

3:50 Calling it, dream sequence. Losing interest.

Seriously.. I don't think I want to keep watching anymore.

>> No. 36795097
Youtube embed play button
>> No. 36795099
Your video cuts off the sound at the last part.

And yes, seriously. It screams dream sequence and I'm frankly not interested in it in the slightest.
>> No. 36795100
Why? Just because "Oh nothing is actually going to happen"?

Motherfucker, dream sequences are still prime material for deep character introspection and surreal imagery, just because running away from a hydra is not going to be all that exciting doesn't mean that dream sequences as a whole are garbage.
>> No. 36795102
It's not exciting because I know how it's gonna go. There is no surrealness or deep character introspection because the audience must believe that it is not a dream sequence thus everything must play out as normal. It is only at the end when things start turning funny do we get the big reveal.
>> No. 36795103
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>It is only at the end when things start turning funny
Things actually seem sort of funny early on. It kind of builds on the surrealness the longer it goes, rather than wait until near the end of the episode to unleash it at once.
>> No. 36795104
Holy shit, I didn't notice the breakfast before, neat.
>> No. 36795106
....That's a fluke. It doesn't happen again.

Show me it hapening a second time and I'll watch it just for that.
>> No. 36795107
Works for me.

I'm surprised you would blanketly disregard the episode instead of judge it for its content. That's something I'd only expect from an exceptionally few number of people. Call it shit if you want, but watch it first.
>> No. 36795108
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Well there's variations of how the rooster is handled when Apple Bloom wakes up. First time the rooster crows off screen. Second time, we see it and the rooster lays an egg. Last time it's done, it's Pinkie in her Nightmare Night costume.

Last edited at Tue, Apr 21st, 2015 16:46

>> No. 36795109
Multiple day dream sequence?

Alright, I'll watch it later.
>> No. 36795115
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Pinkie there was probably the best part of that episode XD
ah, that callback. Plus, pinkie sight gags are far better than her sound gags.


I'm actually surprised here myself; cranky is normally one of the most gungho positive posters about FIM that I've met; So seeing him hate an episode that I find to be EXCELLENT is just quite a shock :/
>> No. 36795118
I didn't say I hate it.
>> No. 36795119
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I said I hated it, and thus far I still do, though I have to give it a second go yet. It's been a while since I've disliked an episode, but this is definitely one I did not like.
>> No. 36795138
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Very interesting.

That was one of the highlights of the episode.
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