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solemnly sweared not to be scared · 12:17am Sep 11th, 2015

S3E03 - Too Many Pinkie Pies

Pinkie Pie is my favorite mane 6 character, because I identify with her the most. And this one episode, from the unpopular third season, affected me pretty hard...

The episode ends with Pinkie writing a friendship letter to Celestia on some moral about choosing what friends you spend time with, based on the first part of the episode. but since all the fun parts of the episode are about the duplicates, we know the real moral for children to learn here. Don't duplicate yourself! :trollestia:

(I know this is about the snow goons instead of the duplicate Calvins storyline, but the punchline fits better here)

Duplicates are a common story trope, and for this MLP episode they really could've picked any character as the victim. Imagine multiple Rainbow Dashes flying around, or multiple Rarities working together. You could imagine duplicate Twilight Sparkles, but I'm pretty sure I've seen that done in numerous fanfics on here. You can then work out how each of them would respond to that inevitable issue of "which is the real one?" Twilight would have a logical solution with multiple contingency plans, Rainbow Dash would try to race the others or something to prove she's the superior original.

So it's interesting that Pinkie Pie, out of all the characters, was chosen by the writer. Because of her nonconventional way of thinking, she doesn't handle things very well when the duplicates prove to be a public nuisance. This pretends to be played for laughs at first...

Ohh... We've all got the same adorable tails, we've all got the same adorable manes, we've all got the same adorable hooves! Which one of us is the real Pinkie?! Oh! I haven't the slightest clue! And if I can't tell us apart... who can?

This is great! If I pass, I get to be with my friends again! But what if I don't pass? Oh, what if I'm not the real Pinkie Pie?!

(Spike) So lemme guess. You're the real Pinkie Pie.
Heck if I know. Could be any one of us if you ask me. And if I said I was the real Pinkie, you wouldn't even believe me anyway. So just leave me alone. I've got some important poking the ground with my hoof to do.

Yeah, that silly Pinkie Pie, only she would forget that she's the real one. :derpytongue2: However! Maybe it's just me, but I've always found this to be so haunting and poignant.

It is a rather dark episode, but not for the reason most everyone else latched on to. That is, the idea that Twilight might zap the real Pinkie and "kill" her. It's mentioned once, but seemingly glossed over by everypony, as if they either don't care, or just assume it'll work out in the end. Well we know they do care about their friend, and it is an optimistic show setting to begin with, but that didn't stop dozens of writers from turning this into a horrifying "what if?" scenario in their fanfics.

No, that's too obvious. The horror element here is that Pinkie stops trying to prove she's the original. She even stops believing she's the real one. It's amusing that she's the only Pinkie moping around while the others are still bouncing across town, but that just shows that she's not joking around by her nonsense lines about being fake, it's actually deeply affecting her.

She can't tell herself apart from the others physically, but neither can she see any difference in personality. To Pinkie, everypony else sees Pinkie as that crazy one who throws parties and hops around and is loud. And oh yes, she likes FUN. Do any of them even know the real Pinkie? Does it matter to them if they have the original Pinkie? Surely they'd be just as happy with a duplicate, since they can't tell the difference. and Pinkie suspects that there's nothing "real" about herself, since she's just built herself up as this superficial persona.

To Pinkie, it doesn't matter anymore. The copy is just as good as the original, it would still be Pinkie Pie either way.

Pinkie Pie has this terrifying loneliness in her character, which isn't shown much. It's much better communicated in the episode Party of One, which also happens to be mostly misinterpreted in the fandom's collective memory. Pinkie believes that her friends are annoyed at her attempts to spread cheer, loses faith in them, and becomes a recluse. Not a gothy serial killer. In Too Many Pinkie Pies, she believes herself to be easily replaceable to her friends, which causes her to lose faith in herself. She convinces herself that she's just another copy, even though she ironically acts more mature than the other Pinkies.

I guess the hidden moral here is that being the original does matter, even if a copy would be just as fun-loving and cheerful. It does matter to her friends because it also mattered so much to the real Pinkie. It mattered so much to her that it's why she got into this whole mess in the first place.

I don't mean that literally in terms of duplicates, but it's hard for me to phrase that in a practical manner. I admire Polsky for writing this episode, it's such a risky concept. It's a cliche sci-fi plot repurposed to tell a story about a character and her insecurities about friendship. It's definitely not as easy to directly explain as Party of One but something about it hit me harder. In its own way, it's something weird and intuitive, like Pinkie Pie herself.

On another note, it was my birthday today! Pinkie Pie invited me to a party and mentioned something about making cupcakes? But I should come alone for some reason? Yay!

Report hazeyhooves · 403 views · #Pinkie Pie
Comments ( 4 )
Majin Syeekoh

That was a lot of setup to announce your birthday.

Happy Birthday, btw.

the comments on that video get pretty amusing. one third of them understand Karl's point and sympathize with him. another third think he's a retard because obviously it's "common sense" to know you are you. and the last third make jokes about masturbation.

it required subtle misdirection to keep it a surprise

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