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Particle Physics and Pony Fiction Experimentalist

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Rarity and the Fashion Industry · 11:38pm Jan 7th, 2014

Wow – 100 followers! A hundred readers who I can amuse with my random commentary on ponies, rainbows, particle physics and other nonsense. Welcome to everyone new.

Rarity is a pony who I have a slight bias against, due to a prejudice that stunt flying, academic study, nuclear engineering and such like are all far more suitable professions for a young lady than fashion design. But Rarity is a strong-willed mare, who goes her own way, and we can't fault her. As Lauren Faust explained, she is, “not a trend follower but a designer who sells her own creations from her own store. We portray her not as a shopaholic but as an artist.

And a lot of the episodes featuring Rarity have been really good. Especially when they involve fashion. One of the advantages of making a show featuring only non-human characters, who only wear clothes on special occasions, is that you don't need to worry about the very complicated question of what is an appropriate style to dress young girls (read some of the blogs by feminists, mothers, and feminist mothers about Strawberry Shortcake, or Equestria Girls...). This leaves the script writers free to do pretty much what they want concerning fashion.

I was eagerly awaiting Rarity takes Manehattan, imagining that it would be some sort totally over the top comic parody of The Devil Wears Prada. The obsessed-with-its-own-self-importance New York fashion industry is surely one of the easiest things in the world to caricature, and the results are always hilarious.

Well, there was some of that, even if it wasn't quite as much fun as the season one episodes. The fashion show scenes weren't quite up to the runway drama in Green isn't your color and Suited for success; and none of the new ponies quite matched the character of Photo Finish.

But there was a lot I liked. The names were brilliant – Suri Polomare and Coco Pommel – genius! The Manehattan background was great. It was a good story. I loved the way Rarity put together a new collection at the last minute made from hotel room fittings – shame that the hotel management didn't have anything to say on that.

Two irrelevant observations: unless I am mistaken, this episode gave the first sight of the ocean; and the first unambiguous evidence that ponies drink coffee.

I am now inspired to update my wardrobe. Maybe it's time I replaced the anorak I've been wearing for the last nine years.

Comments ( 3 )

Wow, you're right. I hadn't realized that was the first time we've seen the ocean. Season 4 is full of adventure, and whether or not you think the writing's improved, the animation has undeniably skyrocketed. Just look at that shading! And scenery! And lack of clones! Perhaps that last one can be chalked up to getting rid of all the changelings, though.

Do we know it's an ocean and not just a really big lake?

We don't know for sure that it's not a huge tank of lemonade

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