• Member Since 22nd Sep, 2011
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I'm the creator of Otakuworld.com, Jenniverse.com, the computer game Boppin', numerous online comics, novels, and tons of other wonderful things. I really love MLP:FiM.

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On the Second Season, and How Episode 8 Broke My Heart · 12:53pm Nov 27th, 2011

Do you remember Equestria?

I do.

Equestria was a medieval world with magic, populated by sapient ponies. It was a Dungeons and Dragons world divided into a safe realm under magical protection, bordering a forest of ancient, mythical monsters. It had a unique and mostly self-consistent technology based on horsepower and some magic. The few exceptions were introduced by writers that didn't quite get the concept as created by Lauren Faust.

The stories of Season One were each lessons, real lessons, in friendship; as Twilight Sparkle learned, so did we, the audience. The focus was on the characters and their relationships with each other; what adventure there was existed to highlight this focus.

Once or twice, every season, we would have a Big Event, a true adventure, always very heroic fantasy.

But above all, I remember Pinkie Pie, the comic relief that with her wacky antics permitted the rest of the characters to be the opposite of wacky; to be relatively serious, composed of strengths and weaknesses, ultimately complex personalities dealing with each other.

Now, with Episode 8 of Season Two, Equestria, that beautiful vision of Faust's has been destroyed.

Pinkie Pie is seen less because she is no longer needed; in Season Two every character is wacky and kooky and crazy. Gone forever is her 'Giggle At The Ghosties'; now she is terrified of ghosts, fleeing at the mere mention of the word. She is no longer silly-yet-courageous. She is barely there, an echo, a ghost herself.

Suddenly, Equestria has stopped being a self-consistent world, and has instead become a stage upon which any prop - from a hydroelectric dam to make a 'Superman The Movie' Reference, to a street that ends in an insanely dangerous cliff - all can be inserted purely for a cheap gag. I have no doubt we will soon see the characters typing away on the Equestrian internet; we have already seen radiation/biohazard suits in use.

Do you want to know what cartoons have a more solid world than Equestria now? Thundercats did. He Man did. Bloody, dreadful SMURFS have a more self-consistent world, a more rational ontology, than Equestria. It wasn't always so.

Equestria was once a wonderful, astonishing land of medieval ponies with magic.

Now it has become Wacky Land from Tiny Toons Adventures; it has become Family Guy, it has become Freakazoid, filled with parody references to media - to movies and other cartoons, but nothing of its own anymore. I've seen those other shows, I loved My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic because it WASN'T them. It was unique.

There have been a couple of decent episodes in Season Two. Sisterhooves Social was wonderful. Lesson Zero was... alright. Luna Eclipsed had its moments, but, let's face it, that was not the Luna we saw at the end of the pilot for MLP:FIM. Imagine if they had done as well as some of the fanfic writers and fan illustrators in representing a shy, quiet, regretful Luna, being helped with love and understanding to fit in after having been imprisoned for so long. Better, isn't it, just thinking about it?

In the first season, there were moments of quiet, moments of sadness, moments of sincere emotion. Season one was filled with emotional sincerity.

Now, in Season Two, wacky cartoon gags are the focus, and they are non-stop for the most part. MLP:FIM has become a parody of itself; Friendship Is Magic has lost its soul to become another empty collection of cheap jokes.

Do you remember learning about a world where ponies literally made Nature work? Winter Wrap Up? The Running Of The Leaves?

Didn't you want to see how they made Winter and distributed it? Didn't you want to see them make Spring? Would that not have been better than seeing a cheap parody of Batman, Zorro, Superman and Darkwing Duck rolled into a rehash of Season One's "Boast Busters"? Now, instead of Trixie learning not to brag, we have Rainbow Dash learning not to brag.

It was better the first time they did that story, and it was better because it wasn't a cheap parody of movies, but instead it was a genuine story of feelings and characters.

I almost quit writing tonight, because of Episode 8, The Mysterious Mare Do Well.

It wasn't just terrible; it was an abomination that destroyed the very world in which the characters we have come to love exist in. Characters are a product of their environment. If the environment is wacky, so must be the characters, as they relate to it.

Pinkie Pie is irrelevant now because every character is Pinkie Pie. No character is deep, or real, or truly sincere anymore. They cannot be, because the world of Equestria itself has failed them. I guess Discord won; its all chaos now.

Apparently, when Lauren Faust left, she took the magic with her.

The writers that remain only know how to do cartoons as gag shows. All of the Sailor Moon inspired tenderness is absent, dead, destroyed.

And I find that terrible.

To those that read my stories here on FimFiction, I want to make it clear that my Equestria is my best understanding of Lauren Faust's vision. It's filtered and expanded through my brain, of course, but my Equestria does NOT have hydroelectric dams, or automobiles, or steam trains, or electric machines or cheap gags.

My Equestria is a medieval-like magical world of sapient equinoids who have to personally operate Nature. My Equestria is not a place of parody, it is a place where relationships matter, and where reality is self-consistent. This is the Equestria I extoll in my stories, not the version we are seeing in Season Two.

It also bothers me, I must say, how few people out there, on sites like Equestria Daily, in the comments, seem capable of understanding what they have lost. They seem content with a wacky gag cartoon that happens to feature ponies. They seem to delight in formerly sensitive, complex characters suddenly acting like the usual American Style cartoon puppets. They don't see that they have lost an essential, anime-like depth of spirit and tenderness. They don't care, or they don't mind.

Not me.

I yearn for Faust's original Equestria, I yearn for my vision of a world of real, cooperative, feeling, intelligent equinoids living under different physical laws than our Earth.

Once there was a show about that world; I miss it.


Report Chatoyance · 957 views ·
Comments ( 22 )

Thank you! I knew I couldn't be the only one!

Season 2 has lost most if its...well, magic. The world is a wild mix of technological eras. The cast acts out of character. Overall, the series has become less believable.

Maybe we obsess over these things too much... it is and always was a show for 6-year old girls after all. They don't really pay much attention to bronies (other than the Ditzy inserts) and we can't expect them to. Sure, some of the team have expressed their thanks a couple of times, but that has no direct influence on the production.
We'll probably continue to see cheaper gags, more fanon-crushing developments, family trees and names and a world that is designed to fit around the "message", not the message around the world.

It's a sad development nevertheless, especially considering the influence it had over the world wide web and the community it spawned. I guess western cartoons simply can't keep up depth for very long :(

While I agree with you regarding episode 8, I don't think you are being fair.

Lauren supervised both Seasons of FiM. It is still her world, and it is very creative and meant to be modern for today's little girls and their parents. Now as for the wackyness we are seeing, we need to remind ourselves that television is ratings driven, thus there has to be some leeway to some humor to captivate the audience into staying on the channel to watch commercials.

This season appears to focus on the individual characters more the its previous one. It may be why we see less of Pinky Pie... we may have a episode of her very shortly or not. One thing is certain though, the hub may have requested some changes because of their educational commitments. The ponies act as role models that children may imitate in real life. We really do not need children running around acting crazy like Pinky Pie, as that will no doubt create problems later in life. Its good to have humor, but there is a time and place for it.

I can understand your objections to the modern theme (ie electric dam, cranes, etc.) but look at the episode in season 1 where Apple Bloom makes cupcakes with Pinkie Pie. Electric mixer, and the stove looks like it may be electric powered.

See it this way, don't stop writing because one episode let you down, try seeing the modernness as something that you could use for a future story. You do not have to include it in future stories. And hey, this episode might of been a one time thing. Don't give up hope!

#3 · Nov 27th, 2011 · · ·

I actually liked this episode as a lighter look at things, but having said that, what you're talking about has merit. I personally liked the antics, but the moral of the story was a bit too soon after the last episode. It seems Dash only gets an episode where she acts like a jerk, this series. She's not displaying loyalty, so why is she the element of loyalty?

Not everything has to be epic, not everything has to be serious, and there are a number of excellent writers in the series so please don't let one episode knock you down. I don't like seeing skyscrapers, dams and trams in Ponyville, let alone Equestria, but I can take them in short bursts (this is my major beef with the CMC episodes, rather than the CMC themselves. They do very un-ponylike things in un-ponylike ways rather often).

Season 2 isn't season 1, but I do think they're sticking to the formula provided by Faust. Although drift of that will occur, I do think we'll see things return "to normal" once they get over their "every pony has to have a message to Celestia" stint. I think the writers are exercising some freedom and I'm prepared to give them that, but I do want things more medievil in the long run.

#4 · Nov 27th, 2011 · · ·

ponyville is medieval.. explain the wild west or victorian towns then , or electriconic lab and photographers then.

but yes we lost something , shame about it , maybe we set the bar too high?

I personally feel that you are overlooking some details, and not being very fair to the show. You seem to be extending a single episode to claim that the entire season has gone silly.

Yes, episode 8 was silly. However, so was Feeling Pinkie Keen. Mare do Well had a dam and a unusual street. Pinkie Keen had a falling piano and a supercomputer. What about Over a Barrel, where a single pie to the face makes a buffalo apparently mortally wounded until he tastes it? How about Owl's Well, where Spike pulls an evil mustache and cloak out of nowhere for the sake of a joke? The universe changing for the sake of jokes has been happening since the start of the show.

Characterization tending to vary has been happening since the beginning of the show. For example: Fluttershy became afraid of heights for Dragonshy, after we'd seen her and Rainbow Dash fly Twilight down a steep cliff. Some episodes later after Dragonshy, we saw her flying and carrying a cart of frogs. Rarity lost all traces of her generosity for much of Sonic Rainboom, making the situation even harder for Rainbow Dash.

Episode 8 had its problems, sure. Every episode has its problems.

Good points. There is certainly truth behind your words. However, I don't think the comedic elements themselves are the problem. It's unique and fun to think that ponies make war with apple pies. It's what they do to the characters.

The problem, and I think that's what Chat meant aswell, is that everypony is approaching Pinkie-level of wackiness. Their character traits are pushed to the extreme.
Twilight snapping in Lesson Zero would give Pinkamena a run for her money (not to mention that it didn't fit her personality at all imho).
Dash is acting like a complete flankhole and not like the embodiment of Loyalty in Ep 7 and 8. Yeah, Dash has always been a bragger, but it's completely exaggerated in the last episode. She, too, was out of character.
Pinkie was a scaredy-pony on several occasions now (Giggle at the Ghostie much?).

And do you really need to put hydroelectric dams and steam-powered trains in Equestria (especially after pony-drawn trains have been shown before)? Okay, I don't mind that much myself, but was it really necessary?

Of course you could argue that these changes happen all the time, and that even S1 wasn't spared. (Flutterrage, anypony? Twilight's basement lab?) And in fact, one would have to be quite obsessive to even complain about these things in the first place. Maybe. But it disappoints nonetheless.

I'm probably being too harsh on S2. But it still feels different, wrong, somehow.
Maybe fanfics have just twisted my expectations...

Every week in S2 I have felt it could have been better. Sure S1 had it faults, but just look at "Ticket Master". They handled that horrible 'only two tickets' dilemma that has shown up in way to many shows with an interesting and refreshing change. But S2 almost feels like they are trying to hard to appeal to their target audience (little girls) and bronies. Now the episodes are more slapstick and trite, but on the other hand a lot of the brony favorites in the way of background characters are showing up. Derpy has been in every episode in S2 so far since the third one at least, and I've been seeing a lot more of lyra, bon bon, and berry punch as well. But as I'm sure as nearly every writer on this site can attest to, trying to make everyone happy is the fastest way to make nobody happy.

I agree somewhat, season 2 doesn't seem to have that spark that drew me in before. However that could simply be that with this season, our expectations have raised the bar to a point that we aren't blown away by the new episodes like we were in season 1.

Personally, I am going to withhold judgement until we see a few more episodes. There's still time to save the spark.

Also, S1e8 was the work of a writer who has not written for this show before.

I have to disagree with you on Luna Eclipsed. It was a wonderful episode, and I think you may have just gotten too attached to your fanon for her to appreciate it. It shows us that Equestria is not a static place, that it changes and grows. One thousand years ago, the princesses were much farther removed from the populace, using the booming voice you would expect to hear from a living god who controls your entire world. I think it was really interesting to see Luna, effectively a time traveler, try to come to grips with how pony society has changed.

First of all I'd like to say that I respect your writing. I don't have an account here yet but I mean to get one soon, once I have something written worth putting up. Your work is inspiring, to say the least.

But when it comes to all of this I... can't help but think you're being a little narrow-minded.

First of all, Faust was not gone for Season 2. She was still a creative consultant; this was still her world and she probably had a hand in it before leaving over the whole season Season 3 thing. I may be wrong on this, and if so please do tell me, because it's not my intention to present untrue points; but she had many opportunities to step in and fix things that did not line up with 'her' interpretation of Equestria and she didn't.

Addressing your argument over Pinkie Pie next, well, I just think that's not fair, especially not the way you phrased it. You're letting single episodes (one drop in an eight-episode and growing bucket, as it were) define an entire season, and that's just being biased. I'll be the first to admit that The Mysterious Mare-Do-Well and Lesson Zero were probably a little more over-the-top and heavy-handed than they needed to be. Crazy Twilight existed for one afternoon. She doesn't exist any more. Braggart Dash has *always existed* and while that was turned up to eleven in this episode it's certainly nothing we haven't seen before; knowing Dash, she probably remembers the whole Trixie ordeal but chooses not to apply it to her because, well, she's Dash, she's different from Trixie. Indeed, Twilight and Applejack both, while sacrificing some screentime, have become more stable and dependable and less wacky, and Rarity certainly seems to have learned a few things from the Sisterhooves Social.

Pinkie herself being the element of Laughter is probably more lighthearted than anything; I am not fond of her as a character, but she proved in Luna Eclipsed that she isn't stupid and universally afraid of ghosts; she's trying to get a laugh out of everyone else, trying to keep it in good fun. Pinkie is still Pinkie, just not in an upfront and obvious manner.

As far as gags go, well, they aren't new. When it comes down to it this is a cartoon show, and cartoon shows will always have gags. Season 1 had its fair share--horse-drawn horse-drawn carriages? A hop, skip, and a jump? Pretty much every scene with Gummy ever? Reliance on gags is not something new.

The argument about Luna disappointed me. Tychomonger said it first, but the way you phrased it really just makes it sound like your fanon of Luna is a security blanket that you don't want to let go of. I have a philosophy, and you can reject or accept this as you choose, but in watching or reading or playing or otherwise enjoying media, there is a difference between "somber canon" and "gag canon," and it's important to not mix the two up. The way Luna is, the way she was presented in the show, is relevant, it is "somber canon" because it was not treated as a joke. It mattered to the episode as something more than a plot device; the way Luna acts, speaks, looks, whether you like it or not, is the way the show presents it, seriously, and even if this upsets your view of the quiet bookish Luna (which was my view too, I assure you!), as an author for the fandom attempting to follow the canon as it's presented comes before any personal wiles. Then there's "gag canon," the things that are only there for one-off jokes or as arbitrary plot devices, i.e., most of The Mysterious Mare-Do-Well. Was the dam relevant to the episode? Yes. Was the tram relevant to the episode? Yes. But only tangientially; only in ways that could have been accomplished otherwise, things that are only there to serve one job before they're thrust out of the spotlight. That is gag canon... "silent canon," as it were, if you will pardon the pun, in that it is the kind of canon that can be ignored without damaging the overall view of the world. Will a fic suffer because you do not acknowledge its dam or the building under construction? No. But will a fic suffer if an author obstinately ignores Royal Canterlot Luna in favor of a bookworm? Some may disagree but the ultimate answer is yes. What good is a fanfiction author that does not acknowledge the work he or she has based their effort on?

Lastly, I can't help but feel that your argument leans a little too heavily on self-righteousness and unjustifiable arguments. You call it your interpretation of Faust's idea of Equestria, and that's all it is; but it seems more like you are insistent that your interpretation is the rawest, purest form, that you somehow have Faust in your pocket to check that your canon lines up exactly with hers, and that's presumptuous. Season 2 Equestria is as much Faust's as Season 1; and what is it about your interpretation of Equestria that makes it superior to what you see as something inferior while in reality it's exactly the same, with one or two minor gags that don't fit your comfortable level of medieval Equestria.

Remember Vinyl Scratch? A Unicorn Wizard Did It. A Unicorn Wizard can Undo It, if you don't think it fits.


Ignore what I said up top, I have an account, barebones as it is. This way at least it feels like a non-anonymous face to talk to, I'm sure, if you want to reply


*Drops keyboard*
Gargh, I love a good argumentative rant, and you have to go and beat me to it! I agree with you completely, and you touched on all points perfectly. If only I could irrationally curse you like a cliched supervillan! :pinkiecrazy:

I will say this: Chatoyance, it's apparent from what you've said before that you have lots of headcannon. It's good headcannon, and it's quite unique, but sometimes you have to divorce your headcannon and all the fanfiction you've read and written from what you actually know about the show and the stories/setting. The CB stories are already, by definition, alternate universes, and you should keep that in mind. I notice that you've inadvertently forgotten to tag 27 ounces and The Taste of Grass as such. Everything you've written doesn't fit in the show's or Faust's Equestria, only in yours. You can make as many stories in as many Equestrias as you want, and we all enjoy reading those, but if you start getting confused about whether you enjoy the show or not then it's time to forget the fanfiction, reboot your mind, sit down, turn your smile up and watch a marathon of random episodes until you enjoy them again for simply being fun. You really don't want Nostalgia to set into your head or you'll never enjoy any of season one again either.

While I think your tone was a bit hyperbolic, I have to agree with you on the main points. 'The Mysterious Mare-Do-Well' was an episode that not only put the cast out of character (repeatedly humiliate and deceive your best friend in an effort to 'teach her a lesson'?), it put Ponyville out of character. And it's just the worst offender of Season Two. 'Lesson Zero' was funny as heck, but we've never ever seen Twilight that OCD. It should have started more gradually; Twilight should have been fine at the beginning of the episode, and she should have only been worried when she realized she didn't have a friendship report. The talk of 'magic kindergarten' should have come sometime around when she pulled out the Smartypants doll.

Your blog post really got me thinking about what I like and don't like about the show. Furthermore, it got me thinking about RP on a ponyMUSH I frequent. There have been things going on there (canon characters getting pregnant, an actual Doctor Whooves, a character very clearly inspired by Minecraft) that have bugged me for a while, but your blog got me to take action and demand that the staff establish just what the theme of the MUSH is before Gundam ponies or pokeponies start showing up.

Finally: you're the Unicorn Jelly person! I'm always surprised when I find someone I know from one context in another context; just yesterday, I found out one of my favorite anime fanfic authors from back in the day, who I thought had dropped off the net, has been working on a very nice ponyfic.

TL;DR Edition: BITCH :flutterrage:

WHINE :raritydespair:

MOAN :pinkiesick:

TL;DR Edition: BITCH :flutterrage:

WHINE :raritydespair:

MOAN :pinkiesick:

#16 · Dec 4th, 2011 · · ·

Mister Cellophane here

I have to agree with Apocalypse Pony said, this really is a bitch and moan about how MLP:FiM is RUINED FOREVER (as TVTropes would put it) due to one episode of the new season. Don't you think you're being very melodramatic over this. You saying that your stories have tried to understand the vision that Faust have (or had see you think that Faust has not on the team to help out in S2). Have it not occurred to you that, maybe, you were wrong on Faust's vision and she was only making this show to entertain little kids, which somehow, expanded into a wider age-rating. And really, you crying over a cartoon, for little girls; does this not occurr to you as somewhat childish?

Also I can't say that fandom Luna is anything remarkable to be honest. I find canon Luna to be infinitely more interesting then some sort of mix between Fluttershy's character and Twilight's character. She is now her own character, and, to say the least, she is loud and proud.

To say that the magic is gone now that Faust left (really didn't do your research there) is just wrong and on the whole, insulting to the hardworking people whom worked on the first season, like the music crew, the voice crew and, of course, the animation team themselves. They made S1 the way it is, and the same people are making S2 as well.

I didn't like the episode myself, but, calm down. This is really not helping anything, and you really need to get over yourself, girl.

Essentially, what I get from this blog post is that you want what you want, and nothing else.

Well what makes you so special?

I get it, you and the rest of the fandom wanted a shy Luna. The portrayal was common, popular, and pretty much the focus of everybody. Hell, I even did it myself, though, unlike most, rather than complaining about it, I found a way to make fanon and canon work together in a way that was not only unique, but plausible. Instead of complaining about such ridiculousness and crying out for things to return to the way that you want. Adapt, make it work.

Pinkie Pie's hardly irrelevant, she's just yet to have her episode yet. If anyone is due for their episode, it's Applejack. Applejack has the least development of any of the Mane 6, because she didn't even have 'her' episode in season one. Like how Pinkie Pie's was Party of One, Rainbow Dash's was Sonic Rainboom, Fluttershy's was Dragonshy, Rarity's was Suited for Sucess, and Twilight's was Winter Wrap Up.

Applebuck season doesn't count, because we didn't even know who any of the Mane 6 really were yet because of how early in the season it was.

Hell, even the upcoming episode that's supposed to destroy all the fanon with a foundation of Equestria story, I've got a plan to make whatever I write just as valid.

My interpretation of Equestria is of a country, located in a world that spins around Tau Ceti, where the thermionic valve (or Vacuum tube to the yanks) is the pinnacle of technology. A world roughly equivalent to 1943. Is my interpretation any more right than yours? Nope. Sure as hell not.

(Though considering some of the examples of technology shown in the show, seems to be close to what I invisioned, which I will admit, that my already inflated ego is liking very much :trollestia: )

Essentially? Drop the holier-than-thou act about it, it's a television show that you have no creative say in. It's not going to be the end of the world if Princess Luna TALKS MUCH LOUDER THAN IS NECESSARY! :trollestia:

I feel your pain bro in regards to some of the stuff. Admittedly I haven't like EVERYTHING about the new season but I haven't hated it either. In fact I would say I like the second season, it started off strong with John De Lancie essentially playing Q in Equestria and then we got episodes like Sisterhooves Social, Cutie Pox & May the best pet win :pinkiehappy:.

So yeah it's been good for most of the season and then we got episodes 8 & 9 which I didn't like as much as the earlier episodes but they weren't terrible series killing episodes, just the bad apples/bad episodes that every series gets. Lets face it no Tv series has every episode be perfect (Except Game of Thrones but Season 2 can still ruin that if it wants to.).

Anyways give the show time, yeah maybe your initial vision of Equestria has been shattered, but you still have that lovely version of Equestria which is important that you hold on to, otherwise we might be deprived of some great stories. Many of which I'm coming to enjoy :twilightsmile:.

Also I agree with Wheller, we need an Applejack episode since the last 3 episodes since we pretty much had 2 Rainbow Dash episodes and a Rarity one that I didn't like all that much. But I'm hopeful for the future of the show and equestrian Fiction in General.

Am I the only one that thinks episode 8 could have been set in Chatoyance's conversion bureau universe? The amount of technology there could have been copied from earth. I think they would take some of the more useful, peaceful tech. Also, the world is expanding in this universe, so it makes sense that Ponyville would be expanding as well. Hence the new building and the road leading off a cliff (they were going to build a bridge).

Hey, Chatoyance... I know you'll be shocked that this age-old entry is getting a response in December 2013, but I just want to say I am SOOOO HAPPY that someone else on FimFictiom remembers the original He-Man, Thundercats, and the Smurfs!

Totally spot-on about how they had more consistent universes than MLP did. Back then, "its a kids show" wasn't allowed to be an excuse for sloppy writing, not like today where laziness is the rule.


Wow! I am amazed my old blogs are even being read!

Oh, I lovingly remember those old cartoons. They were awesomesauce.

1667563 All three cartoons are on DVD now, actually. I own complete sets of He-Man (plus She-Ra) and Thundercats. Smurfs was never really my thing but there's a complete series release in the UK (not in the USA though, for some reason). I've heard the UK sets don't include the Johan and Peewit shorts though, which kinda sucks (I don't know about the US releases).

It's kind of weird how I discovered this blog. I hate to point this out, but, ummm, people sometimes mention you (mostly just to say your stories are full of misanthropy. While I haven't read one yet, I'm willing to bet that the charges are false). I got curious, read through your blog, and I'm like "Oh, this person seems to know what she's talking about."

It was also awesome to see someone who

A) keeps her Sega Genesis games in good condition
B) remembers classic cartoons and
C) also sees how Season 2 set the show rolling downhill.

Seriously, that's when I got hooked. "Finally, someone else who sees the decay!"

We need more people like you in this fandom, because honestly I get tired of people pretending everything is all hunky-dorey and, as Mark Evanier put it, "the complainer is always wrong."

Anyway, my blog is here if you wanna see what I've written.

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