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Apr
19th
2017

Pipe Land 1 & 2 [episode recap!] · 5:47pm Apr 19th, 2017

Welcome to a new blog series! Necessitated by me no longer having Discovery Family as a channel, I will be making an effort to rewatch episodes in the middle of the week, likely around the Tuesday/Wednesday period. And since I'm just watching on my own, I'll be more or less liveblogging reactions. Because if the first two episodes were anything to go by, there was a lot of stuff in there I didn't even come close to touching with my initial blog post.

So, sit back and prepare yourself for what hopefully won't be a second weekly dose of negativity. :B We'll see. (Spoilers: It isn't! Though it is long.)

I hope people understand why I called this what I did.


Celestial Advice

I mean, this gets off to a really bad start with "recap the last season" mode, but I should be used to that by now, I shouldn't expect anything more out of this show. :/ I will say that Twilight takes an awfully long time to do what she's doing in Starlight's room, no matter how cute this setup is.

Spike looks fantastic with Rarity's hairstyle. He's like a 17th century noble's pageboy. I mean, just imagine him in what he was wearing for Hearth's Warming Eve, to narrate the play. It's the perfect look for the little guy!

The question becomes, is Starlight afraid of spiders?

The mirror is a nice touch, and I am VERY glad there's a picture of Moondancer in there. (Also, Rarity in a toga. I want the story behind that!)

Goddamn. You look across that crowd, pony and changeling alike, and just about everyone is really excited, with big, happy smiles. And then there's Mayor Mare with her perpetual bedrooms eyes, just like, "Damn, that is a lot of fine pony asses up there."

Discord releasing his own head for the medal is possibly the kindest thing he's ever done. Speaking of, the joke with Thorax's horns was well appreciated. Also on that note, I saw a picture of him fucking Princess Luna not long ago, and now I kind of ship them because it's great. c.c;

So that's apparently Andy Price chatting up the Mayor after the ceremony. I knew he looked familiar. Also, yeesh, what's with that walk cycle? D:

I'm pleased Trixie and Discord are still not getting along. Also amused by Starlight snickering at them. Sort of weirded out by the changeling voices. D:

So, Discord getting Twilight riled up about destiny and whatever is bad in a couple ways. First, yes, I shouldn't expect more out of Discord, but I'd like to, and I'm really just tired of him being an asshole for no reason. It's boring, it isn't funny, I'd like something else, please. Secondly, the whole thing is shitty because it's a hollow echo of how he was in Princess Twilight, arguably his best turn as thorn-in-the-side. In light of this scene, it becomes patently obvious that the only way the writers know how to use him is as a sign with an arrow on it to get the plot moving. And, I mean, yeah, he's supposed to be friends with Twilight, they're supposed to have made good with each other somewhere along the line (Three's a Crowd? I try not to remember that one too well), he is supposed to have learned better how friends are to act with each other. He's just a dick!

Okay, but god, I really hope this isn't foreshadowing Starlight becoming a princess, I will just puke.

>acknowledgement that the changelings are in fact a kingdom, and Thorax is indeed their king

The Groucho glasses ending up on Thorax's face for a split second are the best moment in this whole episode.

I wonder what Berry Punch is discussing with the CMCs.

The "Ponyville Chronicle" scene establishes A) Ponyville Chronicle, and B) Trixie is best horse.

But really, there wouldn't be any conflict in this episode if Discord weren't rabble-rousing. He is dedicated to making there be conflict. Not that conflict is bad, more that it should arise naturally from the situation instead of being forced by one asshat.

Y'know, if Twilight makes one mistake in this episode (aside from listening to Discord), it's comparing herself too much to Princess Celestia. Using her as a guide for how to rule, or how to be a teacher, is a fine thing, but Twilight doesn't have the centuries of experience doing either that Celestia does. It's no wonder she didn't come up with a path for Starlight! Gosh. (Externality.)

I still don't see what's so bad about sending Starlight away. :V (In all honesty, it could have led to some good opportunities for back-and-forth episodes, or just Starlight-focused episodes taking place in other areas, a way to expand the world and the storytelling possibilities presented by the show.)

Something about Celestia's foreleg is bothering me. It's all… too long and flappy and weird. Maybe that's why Principal Celestia is designed the way she is. c.c

"Probably because you're not as close as you think you are." Seriously, this is Discord rabble-rousing, causing trouble, and being a dick for literally no reason. If you didn't believe me before, look at this line, and tell me he's not an asshole.

And then we get into the fantasy segment, aka, an easy way to fill fifteen minutes of airtime.

The bad acting is amusing, as is the changelings' general belligerence. I do not know how to feel about the crowd's murmurs of agreement reminding me of nothing so much as the Bushwoolies. D:

I'm sorry, Celestia, there is definitely a wrong way to fantasize, and you would know that if you had the internet. Ask the Principal about it sometime.

I do like that "are you like, bugs, or what?" line. It means Twilight's not sure!

But seriously, Twilight, if the changelings turned on her, she could probably handle herself. :B Externalities, I know, I just hate episodes about her making a big deal out of nothing.

"I was not aware that I was an expression." Okay, if this crappy episode is all we get of Celestia this season, I can probably forgive that for this line. We've spent seven years hearing things like "Celestia only knows where", and for her not to know about it — or, more probably, to rib Twilight about using her name in vain while she's right the fuck there — is more character development than she's had in the last five seasons combined. Fucking amazing. And better than getting the Celestia-and-Luna episode half the fandom's been clamoring for since season two and having it turn out shitty.

Brolight and Brember is also the best part of this episode, even if the rest of the scene is dumb. Well, no, I take that back, the dragon scene is actually really funny; see also: "Star… kle… light… Star?"

Spike once again is the voice of reason that no one listens to. He's literally my stand-in in the scene right now, completely done with Twilight's shit.

Flurry Heart cuckoo clock. :D

Of all the stupid freakouts Twilight has in this episode, this is probably the most reasonable one. Starlight does not know the meaning of "gone too far", and Sunburst is too much of a little bitch to stop her when she crosses a line.

So, I initially thought "Somnambula's Tempus Objectis" referred to Somnambula's Weather Abjuration, a spell Sunburst dug out back in the S6 premiere. I don't think that's the case, though my bad Latin is kind of rusty. I do note that Somnambula — who, I'll remind you, was a witch from G1 whose thing was stealing others' youth, Mother Gothel-style — must have made a big impact on Equestrian magic, whoever she was, and the faux Latin names suggests that A) spells have both kinds of names, B) Twilight knows this enough to have Starlight use them in this fantasy scene, and C) that she herself doesn't use them suggests that Starlight was originally trained under a different paradigm, or by a different teacher, or self-taught with older books that preferred the "classical" names to the more common ones. Someone write a fic about this.

Twilight's crying because she really gets into her own fanfics.

Okay, yes, and Celestia's laughter here is the other best thing about her in this episode. She's fucking perfect, don't any of you come near her, I will fight you. >:B

It's okay, Celly, we know you were laughing at her just a little.

I kiiiind of feel like the setup of this laboratory flashback scene conflicts somehow with Amending Fences, but I can't put my finger on how, so I could be wrong.

Celestia staring at the moon for advice. Best scene.

Yeah, Twilight's friends interacting with each other like that definitely contradicts season one. I'd understand them knowing each other, maybe even small friend pairings like Rainbow and Fluttershy, but all five of them feels too coincidental. I'm going to go with "illustrative of point, not how it actually happened" for this one.

Yeah, Celestia really is the best part of this episode. And I love the guards kibitzing behind her.

"I was afraid if you made friends, you wouldn't need me anymore." Yeah, this is why I titled the episode blog the way I did. >.> I think that conversation does show that Celestia considers Twilight her peer now, if nothing else.

Man, Thorax is infected with the perpetual bedroom eyes, too. What's with that?

I notice in that listing of Starlight's virtues, both honesty and generosity are left out. And whoever heard of an Element of Strength? Pssh. :V I'll bet Bulk Biceps is the Element of Strength.

Way to lampshade your dickish behavior at the last possible second, there, Discord.

I want to see someone write the girls' night out, with Thorax as one of the girls.

Even with as harsh as I've been on him, I really expect better of Discord than fucking cheese puns. D:

"I know, I measured." See, this is why I still say Twilight's adorable.

So on second blush, this episode offers a good bit more than I initially thought it did. However, the fantasy scenes are maybe half the episode, for better or worse, and Celestia really only saves the third act. Those together are framed by gratuitous recapping, Discord at his worst and a lot of dull shots of ponies being excited about things I don't really care about, wrapped up with a loud confirmation that nothing is going to change. As an episode, it's all right; as a season premiere, it is a decided letdown. I just hope it doesn't herald things to come, mostly on the "chance to change things that is shot down at the last second" angle. Eh, call it 2.5 outta five?

All Bottled Up

Ponies really do the dumbest things with their magic. c.c

God, I love Trixie's little squeal of rage.

Man, Trixie just has to give her a hug for Starlight to make a creamy mess everywhere. :V Yes, that is the caliber of joke you can expect for the rest of this blog.

"You know what you need? Aaaaaa teacup!" XD And then Trixie was best pony. Was there ever any doubt?

So Trixie joins Twilight and, I think, Starlight in having created life via magic. Truly, Equestria is a place of dark omens.

I like the suggestion that Trixie has so much skill with stage magic that she's consequently pretty shoddy with standard unicorn magic, if only for lack of practice.

"And having good hair!" Seriously, I'm just going to be quoting Trixie for the rest of this, because she's the best. :D

Starlight called her Trix. :3 It's so cute! I literally only care about Starlight as her half of the Starxie ship. (It's like Twixie, only supported by canon!)

Bag of pretzels because Trixie is used to living on her own, being poor, and not having to do nice things for other people. She's pretty much trailer trash and it's great. :D

Giant cloud of anger from Starlight's horn because she's full of evil clouds? :O

Oh yeah, is it me, or did they change the show logo for the opening? It seems to have slightly different… colors?

Seeing Trixie walking alongside the mane six, Spike and Starlight still blows my mind. After all, she was never given a big "welcome to the team" musical number like some ponies; this is how these things should be handled!

I like Spike's reason for staying behind. I also like Starlight's dig at Trixie. Not to mention Trixie's dig back. :V The nervous laughter is proof that Trixie is, of course, not kidding, and this has happened more times than anypony will ever know. V:<

I'm glad Starlight foreshadowed the song, I didn't even catch that the first time!

I mean, technically something could disappear if they made it invisible? At least one of them knows that spell from last season! (I forget who and I don't feel like checking.)

"Uh, nunununo." Have I mentioned that I really love Trixie?

>requisite bringing up of Starlight's past

"I'm complimenting you! And me." "...And magic is friendship and stuff." SERIOUSLY, BEST HORSE

I like how Spike is the immediate go-to for a guinea pig.

Okay, so Trixie calls her "mini-Twilight", and I want to believe that is a not-so-subtle nod to criticism of Starlight's character. Because, I mean, what is she in the capacity she's been in for the last season if not a new Twilight without wings? (I'll be Trixie doesn't call her that in bed though, but what if she did?)

>Rarity wants to start with a facial and a hoof job :V

Twilight would be the most annoying corporate manager ever.

I want to state, for the record, that Pinkie's role in this episode absolutely reeks of "We didn't know what to do with Pinkie" syndrome.

>tfw Rainbow Dash is racist against griffons

If there's one thing I like about this episode that isn't Trixie, it wouldn't be important it's that back and forth repeating of lines from one scene to the next. By the end of the episode, it's become one of the best running gags in the whole thing. :)

"Doin' the spell!" Oh my god, Trixie, stop, you are too much!

Okay, but seriously, at that moment, between Spike teleporting himself across the room, her outlandishly hilarious outburst, the spell itself and Starlight yelling at her… Trixie was thinking about the spa. <.< Pretty sure she's DTF 24/7.

That tiny "Ta daa!" is great. And yet it's Trixie's blithe ignorance of the ramifications of her actions that makes this episode.

God, I love how she corrects Starlight saying it disappeared.

There's so many teacups. XD

Seriously, though, that "anger cloud" is explicitly the extra magical energy that would normally be expended in magical fights or mind-control. Starlight is NOT a good pony. D:

Hah, I actually missed that the whole reason Starlight's doing this highly questionable thing is that she doesn't want to risk her friendship with Trixie. Like, that's actually adorable. If stupid. Many things are both.

Ungh, god, the way she says, "You never get mad at meee~", it's like "BEST FRIENDS" with Lyra and Bon-Bon all over again. THAT IS NOT A PLATONIC LOOK

She's been craving something sweet, but apple? :O Apple, Trixie?

"Don't both those fruits mean purple?" The mane six's scenes in this episode are definitely not a highlight, but AJ steals this one with this line. Also, I want to know which of plums and boysenberries are icky. :O

Starlight looks great with lank mane. I wonder what would happen if you combined that look with her Cute Face...

That is a big-ass brooch Trixie points to. When the fuck did she get loaded? Is she getting a stipend now? Was she expecting Starlight to cover it? <.<

Granny Smith knows the smell of a good nut.

Trixie-babble is great. :D I do like how she's a bit more airheaded in this episode than usual. Or maybe it's just that she rarely gets a whole episode dedicated to her in which she isn't gloating and cackling evilly? :B

Say what you will about Trixie, she did at least notice that something was up with Starlight. Even if it took her looking like she's got some kind of disease first.

I'm honestly impressed with how they tied together the jeweller, Granny Smith and the cinnamon nuts into a major thing here. I mean, it's not that impressive, but it did seem like those scenes were just unrelated fluff until this point.

I wonder if Trixie can be qualified as not too bright from this next sequence…

Ah yeah, and then song. I haven't been this nonplussed by a show song since like… A True, True Friend? I mean, Ingram's kind of been phoning it in for the last four seasons or so, minus the occasional flash of brilliance, a la Luna's Future. This is just the same pop pablum you expect from the Equestria Girls movies, not from the show. And it's so time-fillery. D: Bleh.

Though I will say the presence of the song leads to some good jokes (I never get tired of those), I just don't like the song itself.

(But no, the "Aw nuts"-"AHHHHHH"-"Nuts!" transition is A+ superb comedy. XD)

I am glad that Starlight realizes no one can tell your feelings when you bottle them up.

I think I said this in someone else's post, but I am 99% certain Bulk was originally supposed to shout, "Oh no, my nuts!" before someone — heck, even the writers themselves — went, "Uh, no, we're not doing that" and changed it. I mean, "My nut cart" just doesn't roll off the tongue. :B

"I wear many hats." I'll say it again, the real treasure was Bulk Biceps all along. XD

"Nothing!" Always the best response to "How'd it go?" :D

"Haven't you learned anything about using magic to solve your problems?" Yes, she's learned that you have a spell that will make the spa ponies forget the map table was there! :|

"How will we ever have fun?" Oh my god, the devilish way she says this. They use magic to solve problems in the bedroom. >:V

Yeah, so, I mostly love this for all the ship fuel, but it's genuinely funny, even if it does feel like filler. I blame the mane six for that; their scenes just kind of take up space, not contributing much to the overall plot or message. Still, it's a step up from the previous episode, and if the rest of season seven is like this — funny and enjoyable despite its flaws — I'll be rather happy with it. Three outta five!

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Comments ( 18 )

Oh good, I'm not the only one who noticed the shift with the logo. It seems to have a lot more Rarity-mane purple.

Also, good to see these grew on you on the rewatch. :twilightsmile:

Seriously, this is Discord rabble-rousing, causing trouble, and being a dick for literally no reason.

Well holy shit and fuck me raw, is this some actual chaotic behavior? From the physical embodiment of disorder, disharmony, diss tracks, and all of the ways in which the universe and reality are pure irrational cruelty and all of science is a dice roll? Say it ain't so, Jack!

Like, I may be headcanon'ing here, but it honestly seems in-character for a chaos spirit to have inconsistent characterization and rapid mood swings. I mean, it's no more out of character than a supposed agent of chaos scheming and plotting and anticipating any eventuality.

I gotta say, I really like this format of re-watching. Maybe it's just because you're a few homebrew MtG cards away from being Fan of Most Everything's episode reactions now, but I always enjoy seeing more of a person's thought process.

I will totally agree with your review about Celestial Advice, and glad that I'm not the only one bugged by Celestia's leg. It certainly made me smile when I heard the whole "I was unaware I was an expression" bit, like finally we get a reaction from Celestia about using her name! It brought a chuckle.

And for DIscord, he was pretty much wasted space, and this coming from a brony that loves Discord. What was his point in the episode anyways? He should know better!

Also, the shipping was strong with Starlight and Trixie! I could feel the shipping from where I was sitting. They're now a new favorite pairing.

And yes, they did change the logo. Not only in color, but design as well. It was one thing that really stood out to me watching these episodes.

Personally, I think the opener could have been so much better. Let Starlight go off on her own and give us some awesome world building. As an episode, I'd agree with your rating. But as an opener, it's at most a 1.5 of 5. Nothing really happened, except for character growth by Celestia. And I love the idea of Starlight and Trixie having their own adventures.

Also on that note, I saw a picture of him fucking Princess Luna not long ago

And we needed to know this why? :unsuresweetie:

Even with as harsh as I've been on him, I really expect better of Discord than fucking cheese puns. D:

Completely worth it for the line "That's just the first of many cheese jokes if we go down this path." Even just writing the line out made me chuckle at it.

I like how twilight's fantasizing was a five minute run of the writers going "look at all the good ideas we won't be exploring this season." It reminds me of the cheap joke about twilight never being sent on friendship missions and then I want to slam my face into the crystal table until it breaks or I do.

It's like Twixie, only supported by canon!

Hahaha, ouch.

This recap was a lot of fun to read!

And yeah... i hadnt thought of it like that but its true that startrix is in some ways like Twixie! Especially with their dynamic in this episode!

But whatever all I care about is all the great Celestia content! So many scenes of her looking contemplatively at teh mon, then at her city and a panorama of her whole kingdom!

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

4502076
"Chaotic behavior" only explains this so far. Needling Twilight about one thing until she has a nervous breakdown isn't exactly chaotic. Saying something like "You're not as close as you think you are" is sewing chaos. But then he takes it back; he's trying to be a friend, and failing miserably. Whether that's because of his nature or something else, I can't say.

Maybe it's just because you're a few homebrew MtG cards away from being Fan of Most Everything's episode reactions now

HAHAHA now there's something that'll never happen :V

4502078
Because it's why I want to ship them now. :B

4502126
That almost salvages it, but then I have a low tolerance for puns.

>tfw Rainbow Dash is racist against griffons

:rainbowhuh: "How can I be racist against griffons? Some of my best friends are griffons!"

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

4502382
Of course, it's not like she's wrong... :V

4502381

But then he takes it back; he's trying to be a friend, and failing miserably.

Or he might just be saying that to subvert expectation and make Twilight feel guilty about resenting his bullshit. If he really wanted Starlight Glimmer to be his roommate, he would have magicked an old roommate out of nowhere and made a big deal about how Steve was moving out and he felt like the loss of enforced social interaction might hurt his reformation.

Well... Discord being a shit for no reason was the low point of the episode, and unfortunately the only source of conflict. I was definitely okay with the recap, seeing it as an exceedingly rare bit of continuity with actual consequence (unlike, say, Twilight getting coronated and still living in the library). The characters' actions had a lasting, positive effect on the world around them, and for me it was really nice to see.

Good and bad, but completely worth it for the end. God, it was Heaven for a Celestia fan to finally see her get a good scene...:heart:

As for ep 2, I dislike Trixie, so I enjoyed seeing her finally get the metaphorical slap she deserved. Now if only Discord can get the same... but I'm not big on either, so would be just as happy to move on. Just so long as we don't get another No Second Prances-esque, "Twilight is a jerk for not liking Trixie, who treats her like shit" shit moral.

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

4502462
One thing I forgot to mention is you can characterize ep 2 as "Trixie is a dick to Starlight for 22 minutes", which is true for at least some level of the claim.

But since I don't like Starlight, I don't care. :V

So, is it the case that Spike is normally just about the smartest character who most has his shit together (mod Twi on smart, maybe AJ for shit-togetherness)... but then when it's time for him to be the main character there's at least a 50% chance he becomes an idiot? :V

I gotta admit, Trixie/Starlight is great. And so is Trixie. She is perfect cinnamon roll.

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

4502662
Yeah, Spike has pretty much always been at his best while sidekicking. :B

4502868
Yeah. Looking back,
"Owl's well" - yep
"Secret of my Excess" - makes dragons as a species look bad
"Dragon Quest" - makes adolescent dragons look bad
"S@YS" - uuuuuuggghhh
"Just for Sidekicks" - him
"Power Ponies" - actually he looks all right
"Equestria Games" - ehh
"Princess Spike" - him
"Gauntlet" - dragon culture is weird, but nobody's really dragged through the mud
"The Times They Are a Changeling" - actually, hard to say here. chokes a bit, but nobody looked great in that one

And especially early on, the times when he was in the lead role and not made to look pretty bad, other dragons/dragons as a whole were. It may even be the case that Spike episodes since season 4 have been overall better than S1-S2, and treated him better. As with almost everything else, though, the less said about S3 the better...

So after feeling a bit down on things from last weekend, just got to reading Friends Forever 38, the end of that series. And I gotta say, it was AMAZING! :D

One of the best princesses outings ever.Kinda reminded me of The Descendant's "Certain Advantages," and of course "Fall Weather Friends." And more princess pets! Kibitz! I think you're going to like that one in your next comics roundup. :D That is how you celebrate the start or end of something.

(Okay, I didn't agree with the claim that Celestia is super practical and not dramatic, but that's little stuff.)

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