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Lifelong Nerd. Lifelong practical Catholic and firm believer that an egg is an egg. Amateur fanfiction auteur elsewhere and maker of YouTube videos.

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    Mariusioannesp Reviews: "Not Asking for Trouble"

    WARNING!!! The following contains SPOILERS for MLP’s mid-season finale “Not Asking for Trouble”.

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Mariusioannesp Reviews: "Not Asking for Trouble" · 3:17am Jun 26th, 2017

WARNING!!! The following contains SPOILERS for MLP’s mid-season finale “Not Asking for Trouble”.

Now, without further a-Yakety-Yak-do, here is my review of “Not Asking for Trouble”.
Pinkie Pie is personally invited by Prince Rutherford of Yakyakistan for the sacred yak holiday of Yickslurbertfest. However, an avalanche then buries Yakyakistan under a pile of snow. Pinkie suggests that she could get her friends from Ponyville to come and help clear the snow, but Prince Rutherford refuses. He believes it’s a sign of weakness to ask for help and insists on making do while they wait for the snow to melt. Will Pinkie figure out how to help the yaks without them asking for help?     
So what’s the verdict?
It was great to see the yaks of Yakyakistan again, and it was a fun episode throughout.
So yeah, I liked it.
We begin with Pinkie Pie oh-my-gosh-ing all over Ponyville. The Remane 5 meet up with Pinkie at the Castle of Friendship to see what this is all about. It turns out, Pinkie was officially invited by Prince Rutherford to attend Yikslurbertfest in Yakyakistan. You all remember Prince Rutherford and Yakyakistan from “Party Pooped” way back in Season 5. As for Yikslurbertfest, it’s a sacred yak holiday. Twilight Sparkle wonders how Pinkie managed to get an invitation. Apparently, Pinkie exchanges letters with Prince Rutherford for some reason. It’s like how Twilight gets letters from Dragon Lord Ember. Will all the Mane 6 eventually be exchanging letters with world leaders? Anyway, Pinkie subtly hinted for an invitation in her letters to him. Here, “subtly” means she wrote seventeen letters asking to be invited.

It’s a mail yak. It’s like Yak Derpy!
Given that ponies still don’t know much about yaks and their culture, Twilight recommends that Pinkie attend Yikslurbertfest. Fluttershy adds that fostering friendships is what ponies do. Pinkie of course is honored to go in her capacity as official friendship ambassador to the yaks. This is not an actual position, but Twilight is a Princess and can make it so. She does, giving Pinkie a ribbon she MacGyvered from a bookmark.

Now it’s officially the most exciting day in Pinkie’s life.
Soon enough, Pinkie is flying in the Twinkling Balloon, you know that hot air balloon in the opening of every episode and utilized in many previous ones, to Yakyakistan with Gummy, playing I spy. Of course, Gummy can’t talk so it doesn’t quite work out. Either way, Pinkie then arrives in Yakyakistan where she finds the yaks vigorously stomping pieces of wood.

Yaks destroy!  
Pinkie fears this outburst is because Yikslurbertfest has been canceled. Prince Rutherford shows up and welcomes Pinkie. He then explains that this is Yikslurbertfest. Yaks celebrate by stomping on things. Pinkie quickly gets into the festivities until she stomps on a twig, and Prince Rutherford has all the yaks stop.

He warns Pinkie to “check self before wreck self”. Oh, it’s like the Ice Cube song. It seems Pinkie has stomped on a century-old sacred yak twig that had been handed down generation to generation. Pinkie is in an apologetic panic, but then Rutherford reveals it was a joke before stomping on the twig himself. Pinkie is glad she got through that close one as she needs this to be perfect given she’s the official friendship ambassador.

Next, Rutherford gives Pinkie a tour of Yakyakistan. Though Pinkie reminds him that she’s been to Yakyakistan before. Does she mean how in “Party Pooped” she made it to the gates of Yakyakistan, but then slid all the way back to Ponyville? I don’t think that counts. Rutherford notes however that Yakyakistan may not be as recognizable now that it’s been decorated for Yikslurbertfest. Okay.
First, Rutherford shows Pinkie the ceremonial yak fire pit where they tell stories.

Then, he shows Pinkie the yak eating hut where yaks eat. There they eat the traditional Yakyakistan cake, and Pinkie notes it has the perfect balance of vanilla extract.

Remember that from “Party Pooped”. Also, they grow their own vanilla bean and import nothing.
Next, he shows Pinkie the yak sleeping hut where yaks sleep.

Note the bales of hay. Also a detail from “Party Pooped”.
Finally, he shows her the yak music hut where yaks listen to beautiful music.

They’re back at the fire pit where Rutherford is finishing up a story about how the yaks defeated evil and saved the world. Pinkie compliments Rutherford’s story in the idiosyncratic yak manner, and Rutherford is so impressed, he declares Pinkie an honorary yak! Pinkie is quite excited over all the titles she’s accumulating. She tries celebrating with a horn bump as yaks do but remembers she doesn’t have horns. She asks Rutherford if she could have her own yak horns, but he insists yak horns would be too heavy for her small pony head. Then, it’s time once again for stomping. The yaks stomp extra hard because they are extra happy. The stomping is so hard that it causes an avalanche from a nearby mountain, inundating Yakyakistan in snow.
Pinkie wonders what they’re going to do now that Yakyakistan is covered in snow. Rutherford seems unsure, but he does assure her that yaks are tough. They’re all going to dig through all the snow, and it’s not going to take long at all. Pinkie also helps by using her mane as a drill.

Remember that. It’s from “Bats!” way back in Season 4.

By the end of the day, they’ve made some progress, but there’s still a long ways to go. Rutherford orders the yaks to dig even more vigorously. However, the further commotion causes another avalanche from the nearby mountain, once more inundating Yakyakistan in snow. Now, they’re back where they started. Pinkie suggests she return to Ponyville and ask her friends for help. Rutherford though refuses, insisting yaks don’t need ponies’ help. Pinkie’s a bit disappointed, but she’s sure everything will be fine because Rutherford must have a Plan B. He does in fact. They’re going to wait for the snow to melt. Pinkie’s concerned that’ll take maybe a thousand moons for all the snow to melt. Rutherford explains that yaks are known for their patience and guarantees that they can make this work. If Pinkie doesn’t agree, she can leave Yakyakistan, but never return. Not wanting her friendship mission to fail, she then offers up snow recipes.
They construct a new sleeping hut out of snow where they sleep on beds of snow.

They construct a new eating hut out of snow where they eat snow cakes.

Pinkie attempts to compliment the snow cake’s balance of cold and water.
They construct a new music hut out of snow where yaks sway to the beat of imaginary snow music.

Pinkie then wanders off a bit and overhears two young yaks, who don’t want to be heard by Rutherford. They’re hungry and concerned over the snow as it’s more than they’ve ever seen before.

Pinkie realizes she has to do something to convince Rutherford that asking for help is okay. She asks Gummy for help in this endeavor and kind of already proves her point.

Pinkie gathers the yaks around their new fire pit made of snow and tells them a story as per yak tradition. She tells the yaks a story about some goats who lived in a desert. Their village is buried under a sandstorm. They knew they couldn’t survive off of “sand-wiches”. So then, the goats’ brave, wise ruler Prince Drutherford asks for help from the neighboring town of Bovineville. The magic cows of Bovineville then help the goats clear the sand, everyone survived and everyone lived happily ever after.

See what Pinkie is doing. It’s a very thinly-veiled parallel to the yaks’ own situation. Pinkie then offers a multiple-choice moral for her story. Is it A, asking for help is okay, B, asking for help saves the day, or C, asking for help is good for everyone? Rutherford answers D, which is that the goats are weak and horrible and the magic cows need to mind their own business. That’s not quite what Pinkie had in mind, and so she tries to encourage one of the other yaks to answer. None do. So that’s a bust.
Next, Pinkie tries suggesting to Rutherford that her friends back in Ponyville would love to join them in their now snow-themed festivities. She then adds that perhaps when they arrive, he could ask them to help clear the snow. Rutherford then tells Pinkie a story from his youth. When he was a little yak prince, he stomped so hard, he created a hole that he fell into. Ice froze over the hole trapping him inside. Rutherford spent the whole winter inside the hole until the spring thaw melted the ice. Rutherford survived on his own without asking for help. Pinkie immediately starts pointing out the holes in Rutherford’s hole story, but he merely insists once again very loudly that yaks don’t ask for help.

Pinkie doesn’t understand because the yaks are hungry and there’s no telling when the snow will finally melt. Rutherford concludes that Pinkie doesn’t understand yaks and thereby rescinds her honorary yak status. He then slams an imaginary door in her face.
Pinkie is once again flying away in the Twinkling Balloon making her way back to Ponyville. She angrily laments the stubbornness of the yaks and vows to take matters into her own hooves. Since she’s getting too worked up, she plays a game of Twenty Million Questions with Gummy to calm herself. She uses all her questions up by the time she reaches Ponyville. Later at the Castle of Friendship, Pinkie tells the Remane 5 everything that transpired in Yakyakistan. Twilight insists they have to go help the yaks, but then Pinkie concludes that they have to go help the yaks. Applejack just tells Twilight to go with it. They all of course agree to help. Applejack suggests bringing them apples, and Rarity wants to bring their finest textiles so they’ll be warm. However, Pinkie insists they can’t bring them any pony stuff because the yaks are proud and won’t ask for help. It’s like that old saying, “You can lead a yak to water, but you better not let him know you’re doing it.” I don’t think anyone actually says that. This will have to be a covert friendship mission.
The Mane 6 all ride together in the Twinkling Balloon to Yakyakistan. (Despite the fact that three of them can fly!) Pinkie was apparently trying to play Twenty Million Questions with Rainbow Dash, but Rainbow wasn’t even participating. Anywho, the Mane 6 arrive in Yakyakistan at night and sneak in.

I think this is Pinkie’s spy gear from “The Crystal Empire” way, way back at the beginning of Season 3.

They just left Pinkie hanging. Literally.
While the yaks sleep, the Mane 6 get to work.
Applejack bucks the snow off the yak huts.

Rainbow clears the clouds form the sky.

Twilight uses her magic to make what is presumably the yak’s vanilla bean crop grow.

Fluttershy prepares the yak beds.

Rarity hangs decorations.

Pinkie bakes a fresh batch of yak cakes.

In the morning, Rutherford and the Yaks awake to find the snow gone and everything is once again ready for Yikslurbertfest. They cheer on Rutherford for being right about the snow melting. Then, Rutherford notices Pinkie’s pink tail slipping through Yakyakistan’s gate. Pinkie and her friends try to sneak away, but then Rutherford finds them outside the gate. Pinkie tries to explain herself, but Rutherford surprises her by claiming that he isn’t mad at her. Pinkie helped the yaks without them having to ask. Okay. This tells Rutherford that Pinkie does understand yaks, and so he declares her an honorary yak. Pinkie is presented with her own yak horns so she could officially horn bump with Rutherford.

Turns out though, it is too heavy for her small pony head.    
This episode was written by May Chan, a new writer on MLP. She used to write for Phineas and Ferb, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and Voltron: Legendary Defender. I’ve only seen Phineas and Ferb a few times, but I have seen the related series Milo Murphy’s Law. I have mentioned before that I have seen and love A:TLA, but I still haven’t seen Voltron: Legendary Defender. This is the second new writer to have written for A:TLA and Voltron: Legendary Defender. Based just off of the Avatar series, I for one think it’s great that MLP is acquiring writers who worked on those and related series. As for the episode in question, as this is Miss Chan’s first, it can't be discerned as of yet what stands out as indicative of her own writing style.
The moral of this episode is interesting because it’s kind of initially laid out as the moral of Pinkie Pie’s goat story. It initially seems that the moral of the episode is about the importance of asking for help. Instead, it seems the moral is to help others even when they refuse your help despite obviously needing it. That’s somewhat applicable in real life if you ever end up having to intern a friend at a mental institution. Though this moral could be problematic given that the yaks, or pretty much Prince Rutherford in particular, never learned to actually ask for help. But there is something to say for being a friend as dedicated as Pinkie helping you behind your own back.    
This episode best showcases a lesser dimension to Pinkie’s character. We all know Pinkie as the happy-go-lucky and oftentimes silly party-planning pony. What sometimes gets forgotten is how far Pinkie is willing to go to help others. This has been seen in episodes like “A Friend In Deed”, “The Lost Treasure of Griffonstone”, and to a certain extent “Party Pooped”. Here though, we see Pinkie have to figure out how help in the manner that best suits those she’s helping. In this case, she has to figure out how to help the yaks when they’ve outright refused her help despite obviously needing it. Pinkie goes so far as the get help for the yaks without them even knowing it. She understood yaks enough to know that was the best way to help them.  
Speaking of “Party Pooped”, this episode bears a very strong and obvious connection to “Party Pooped”. It could almost be considered a sequel to it. We see the reappearance of the traditional yak cakes and yak hay beds from that episode. Also, the yak horns Pinkie is presented with resemble the yak helmet she wore in the previous episode.
I think the horns on the yak helmet were smaller so that's why she had a hard time with these horns.

Pinkie’s goat story is in a way a self-parody of MLP. We already saw a bit of self-parody in “All Bottled Up” at the beginning of the season. The story made you think the episode would be about the importance of asking for help, but that turned out not to be the case at all. It's like this season they decided MLP would just keep subverting itself.
Speaking of the goat story, I wonder if the goats in story have any bearing on reality. That is to say if there are actually communities of goats, implying that some goats are indeed sapient. Grogar was name dropped in “Flurry of Emotions” earlier this season. Grogar is interpreted by fans to be a goat. (Technically in G1 MLP, he was a ram.) Then again, Pinkie’s story also included magic cows and as of yet, cows have not been depicted as being able to do magic. It’s probably just a fictional element of the story. Though maybe, just maybe it could be in the slightest of ways setting the stage for the coming Grogar at season’s end.
This episode gave us a closer look at Yakyakistan and yak culture. As previously mentioned, we did see a few elements return from “Party Pooped”, but we got plenty of new stuff too. We got some new unique yak models. We also learned that yak culture seems to emphasize being tough and self-sufficient as well as a certain stiff-upper-lip attitude. At times yak culture seems vaguely Russian-esque though I’m not so sure Yakyakistan is meant to be Equestria’s answer to Russia. It’s great to hear Gar(r)y Chalk back as Prince Rutherford. He did almost sound a bit different this time around, but that’s probably because he spoke a lot more in this episode. Last time, it was mostly “Yaks destroy!”  
As for what I didn’t like, Prince Rutherford’s story of spending a winter in a hole seemed like it should have been more significant. Like he should have told it as justification for his plan to wait for the snow to melt. When Pinkie starts poking holes in the story and the other yaks listen to this, it’s almost implying that this story gives some authority to Rutherford as prince. Still, this amounted to nothing though it felt like it should have amounted to something. Also, there are a number of moments where the yaks don’t like Rutherford’s waiting it out plan and are open to seeking help, but are too afraid to stand up to Prince Rutherford. That could have been part of the lesson. In the end, with Pinkie helping the yaks surreptitiously, this is something that never gets addressed.  
Honestly, I’m not sure what the title “Not Asking for Trouble” really means in connection with the plot.
Overall, “Not Asking for Trouble” was a fun way to end the first half of Season 7. It was a lot of fun to see yaks and Yakyakistan again and learning more of what makes yaks yaks. I certainly look forward to the further adventures of Pinkie Pie and the rest of her friends when the season returns hopefully sooner rather than later.    
What did you all think of “Not Asking for Trouble”?
God bless you. God bless America. And God bless Equestria.

This episode serves as the mid-season finale of Season 7. It shall be followed by three half-hour Equestria Girls specials airing in MLP’s timeslot. However, after the final special airs in mid-July, it remains unknown when MLP will return. (The next two episodes “Discordant Harmony” and “The Perfect Pear” however have just aired in Australia.) The last time MLP premiered in April, Season 5, it took a break in July and came back in September. That was about two months. If I’m right and “The Perfect Pair” is the special episode that’s supposed to air in the late summer, It would make sense for the Season 7 to start up again in August or September. I hope that’s the case. I could use a break. I know there’s still the Equestria Girls specials, but those can will have to wait just a smidge.

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