News Archive

  • 13 weeks
    S8E25-26 - School Raze


    The Young Six and the Cutie Mark Crusaders stop an evil force from taking over the School of Friendship while the Mane Six try to escape Tartarus.

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    765 comments · 8,322 views
  • 13 weeks
    S8E24 - Father Knows Beast


    Spike and the Mane Six provide shelter to an injured dragon. He claims to be Spike's father, but Smolder suspects there's more to him than meets the eye.

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    121 comments · 4,686 views
  • 13 weeks
    S8E23 - Sounds of Silence


    Applejack and Fluttershy encounter a group of Kirin who are scared to hurt each other's feelings.

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    105 comments · 2,491 views
  • 13 weeks
    S8E22 - What Lies Beneath


    The Young Six find a hidden passage underneath the School of Friendship.

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    62 comments · 1,589 views
  • 13 weeks
    S8E21 - A Rockhoof and a Hard Place


    The Mane Six help Rockhoof fit in to modern-day Equestria.

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    28 comments · 1,236 views
  • 17 weeks
    S8E20 - The Washouts


    Rainbow Dash fears Scootaloo's days as her number one fan is over when Scootaloo is obsessed with The Washouts, an expedition group of stunt ponies.

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    467 comments · 7,996 views
  • 17 weeks
    S8E19 - On the Road to Friendship


    Trixie tries to convince Starlight Glimmer to go to Saddle Arabia with her and do a magic show there.

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    81 comments · 2,960 views
  • 17 weeks
    S8E17 - The End in Friend


    Rainbow Dash and Rarity question their friendship when they cannot find anything they enjoy doing together.

    Reminder: Links to unofficial streams/downloads of episodes are not allowed!

    Apologies for the upcoming dump but the episodes airing right now are a total mess!

    45 comments · 2,627 views
  • 18 weeks
    S8E16 - Friendship University


    Twilight is shocked to find out that Star Swirl the Bearded has enrolled at another school of friendship.

    Reminder: Links to unofficial streams/downloads of episodes are not allowed!

    193 comments · 4,509 views
  • 18 weeks
    S8E15 - The Hearth's Warming Club


    A prank gone wrong ruins Hearth's Warming Eve preparations. When Twilight Sparkle tries to figure out which of her students is behind it, the students bond over shared memories of home.

    Reminder: Links to unofficial streams/downloads of episodes are not allowed!

    Man it's hard to keep up with this weird episode scheduling.

    169 comments · 4,062 views

Episode Discussion » S7E25-26 - Shadow Play · 3:03pm Oct 28th, 2017


When Sunburst discovers the lost journal of Starswirl the Bearded, Twilight becomes obsessed with saving her magical idol from a thousand year old prison.

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Report knighty · 9,299 views · #season 7 #s7e25 #s7e26 #shadow play
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Comments ( 237 )

Alright guys please don’t fight and let’s have a peaceful discussion.

Interesting how Stygian's story parallels Nightmare Moon's.

4710182 And ruin a brony tradition?

I liked the episode. It was a cool adventure style ending, and it was built up well. I saw it when it was leaked, but I still watched it today. I give it a 9/10. I didn't love the soundtrack (or how weird some of the old ponies looked lol)

“It'd take a whole team of ponies to clear away all this brush.”

:looks ahead: Or one Rarity, apparently.

Me and a curator from the amino collaborated on an Analysis about a week ago on this

RIP Star Swirl headcanons.

Which characters did the writers assign the idiot ball to in this episode(s)?

Was there multiple idiot balls, or just one swapped around from character to character?

Bring on Season 8!

You know, so we can see if Flzzlepop Berrytwist makes an appearance.

So many potential fun spur-of-the-moment conversations and flame wars ruined by a leak.
Oh well. *shrug*

Now why in Equestria would we ruin it for you like that and not let you pick 'em out on your own? :trollestia:

This one comment from EqD sums up my thoughts on this two-parter perfectly:

FIM's canon is created and rounded on the fly, so it's a huge compliment when this episode is able to make it all look preplanned. This isn't a simple good-vs.-evil story at all. The entire conflict contains several side plots, but weaves them together so well that nothing falls out of place. Every line has spunk and purpose. Even though the stakes are high, the snappy dialogue and varied characterizations provide a boatload of well-done humour. To have the Elements of Harmony be the Pillars' heirs is a genius idea.

But what it does best is how it builds up the Pony of Shadows's backstory more and more, beginning with an excellent homage to the pilot's opening, treating Ponehenge as the Pillars' final resting place (a reference to the possible origins of Stonehenge), and not treating the PoS as some generic villain. Tying the whole plot into a friendship problem in Part 2 is the best plot twist of the series, because it brings Starlight into the conflict and humanizes the story even more.

Starlight has her best appearance to date: She shows off excellent detective skills, understands something was fishy with the entire conflict, and gets very emotional after Star Swirl casts Stygian off as irredeemable; it's my top moment of the second half. While other villain backstories are often isolated or rather short, SP doesn't leave theirs alone and expands it with each scene, deepening the conflict. When Stygian explains he felt like an outcast in the team for being so weak physically and magically, the story takes such a round turn, and goes back to Celestia's line from MMC: Star Swirl doesn't understand friendship. Starlight's whole arc (much higher quantitatively than S6 and better written by far than in S6) made it feel properly built up.

How Haber successfully balanced out fifteen characters (not including side ones and Stygian) in 44 minutes astounds me. SP gets better with every re-watch, and the conflict makes more sense each time you think about it. It's what To Where would be had it been written well. Best two-parter of the series.

Probably my second favorite finale, just behind Twilight's Kingdom.

This episode answered some questions I had with the show. That is awesome. What's not awesome is that it seemed for years that they never would answer them, and I had some stories planned that were going to answer them with my own headcanon. Those stories have now been comprehensively ripped to shreds. *sigh* It's still cool that they answered those questions, don't get me wrong. I guess I wish they'd answered them sooner, so I wouldn't have sunk so much planning into fics that will never see the light of day.

I personally feel Twilight got the idiot ball the most.

But that is just personal opinion really.

The real moral of this finale is that if Starlight Glimmer, the Queen of Bad Ideas, tells you your idea isn't great, you should probably listen to her.

I've been having this conversation with a friend since the leak. This season has been the best by far in terms of lore, which built everything up properly over the course of the season, even if it was mainly over 4 episodes. It also tied in Castle Mane-ia's mention of the PoS (I don't really want to use that acronym, but eh) in season 4, which Josh Haber wrote. This either could have actually been pre-planned, but I'm pretty sure Haber just used it as an opportunity to tie up his plot line.

Overall, I loved this finale.

So far it seems pretty peaceful good. Alright now back on topic. This was easily my favorite season and finale for MLP. Not only did they tie the side Legends together into the finale they even foreshadowed the fate of the Pillars of Equestria in MLP FIM #58 when they said Meadowbrook suddenly vanished. They also managed foreshadowed Starswirl’s book all the way from the end of MLP FIM #53 From the Shadows where we saw the Pony of Shadows for the first time. Not to mention now the reason Shadowlock was erasing the history books in that arc makes sense. He was trying to erase Starswirl’s book so somepony like Twilight won’t accidentally release the Pony of Shadows. Also a bonus that they incorporated the Sirens into both the comics and the show.

Starlight Glimmer, the Alicorn of ISLAGIATT :scootangel:



...Please elaborate.

I liked this finale a lot, more than the season 5 finale, and more consistently than the season 6 finale. I love To Where and Back Again Part 1 more than either part of Shadow Play, but I dislike part 2.

Shadow Play got a lot done without feeling rushed. It set up elements of not only Princess Twilight Sparkle, but even the series premiere. I was bothered when Princess Twilight Sparkle, the only two parter I don't like, dropped the Tree of Harmony on us without much explanation, so having that now is satisfying. Plus, we got an explanation for the Elements of Harmony, and got to see Starswirl in pony, and they still made time for a good character story! Shadow Play is really good on its own, but also importantly for a finale, it benefits the series as a whole, providing some explanations while opening up new doors with Starswirl and the legendary crew.

Now for some nice nerdy numbers. I've got the season ranked from favorite to least favorite episode with a number score for each. If I give above a 5, I liked the episode and below a 5 is dislike. If these numbers look low to you, they're not. I loved this season, I just don't score as high as a lot of people.

1. Fluttershy Leans In - 9.5
2. Discordant Harmony - 9
3. Shadow Play Part 2 - 8.5
4. Fame and Misfortune - 8.5
5. A Royal Problem - 8.5
6. Campire Tales - 8
7. Marks and Recreation - 8
8. Shadow Play Part 1 - 7.5
9. Parental Glideance - 7.5
10. The Perfect Pair - 7.5
11. A Health of Information - 7.5
12. Rock Solid Friendship - 7
13. Honest Apple - 7
14. Uncommon Bond - 7
15. Celestial Advice - 7
16. It Isn't the Mane Thing About You - 6.5
17. Hard to Say Anything - 6.5
18. Forever Filly - 6
19. Daring Done - 6
20. Triple Threat - 6
21. Al Bottled Up - 5.5
22. To Change a Changeling - 5
23. Not Asking For Trouble - 4.5
24. Once Upon a Zeppelin - 4.5
25. Secrets and Pies - 3
26. A Flurry of Emotions - 1.5
Overall, I give this season a high 9, which could move up to a 9.5 with some rewatching. It's my favorite season since season one. Wonderful consistency, only disliked 4 episodes. Fluttershy Leans In is my favorite episode since Pinkie Pride.

One last note, this was the season where I decided FiM is my favorite show of all time, which is a bigger deal for me than it would be for some, as The Simspons and Digimon are also two of the best things that have ever happened to me.

Dun dun dunnnnnnnnn

As if nobody saw that coming.

Man, this is a weird ranking. Fluttershy Leans in 9.5?!

It's a good episode.

But what's really disappointing is that the show's main villains are mostly Unicorns. It would be really cool if there's an Earth Pony or a Pegasus villain with magical powers.

Oh yeah, and Equestria really needs to upgrade their military (or self defense force) and stop being a doormat.

I have weird taste most seasons, except maybe seasons 3 and 4.

I loved Fluttershy Leans In. I saw it as a perfect exclamation point at the end of her character arc, or what felt like the end at the time, considering A Health of Information impressively managed to find a new angle. She was the right balance of kind and assertive. I also like how little conflict there is. It's the closest the series has gotten to a no conflict episode, a concept I've been interested in for years. It such a serene, down to earth, gently paced, innocent quality, much like season one, only maybe more so. I cared about Fluttershy's vision, and I cared when she told her friends how much they helped her evolve, because it rung so true. I especially loved the little montage at the end. It reminded of the one at the end of Winter Wrap Up, which was one of my favorite moments of the series.

When I look at Fluttershy's problems with learning to be assertive as a multi season conflict, Fluttershy Leans In feels like the happy resolution. I know it's one of the least popular season 7 episodes, but I also loved Party Pooped and 28 Pranks Later, so I have a history of odd taste.

OH SHIT! MOVIE TIE-IN! :pinkiegasp:

"Seapony etiquette isn't going to help, Spike!"

Didn't notice that the first time! And it's been confirmed that the movie is supposed to take place between seasons 7 and 8, so I'm pretty sure that was intentional.

I know, right? The major unicorn villains are pretty much the only holdover that supports the faulty "unicorn supremacist" meme. The show does have a few minor earth pony and pegasus antagonists, but none with powerful magic. Maud Pie is powerful, however, and I think she has potential to be corrupted by the Alicorn Amulet or something similar, given her line in "Rock Solid Friendship." "With the right stone, you could rule all of Equestria if you wanted to." Why couldn't Maud rule all of Equestria instead? And imagine the drama if Pinkie is forced to fight her own sister!

As for a major pegasus villain, it would have to be an entirely new character, maybe somepony mucking with the weather, creating hurricanes and floods and other natural disasters.

I never imagined that Staswirl the Bearded would be a Knight Templar though considering the Sirens story from Fiendship is Magic, I should have seen it coming.

4710227 Horns are the number one causes and solutions of all problems in Equestria. :trollestia:

Something I noticed and thought was cool, although it might be a coincidence, is how Twilights actions when saving Stygian from the shadows coincide with her special her magical talent as stated in the show bible: "Casts light in the darkness, to illuminate, lights the way"

Well, I was surprised. Great tie in with previous episode. But Man!! Twilight was making some cute and hilarious facial expressions!! I did get upset that Starswirl was rude to Twilight though. I hope that Chrysalis gets reformed in season 8, and that there are a few more seasons to go.

Everyone’s still gushing over the episode that they’ve forgotten that Equestria Girls IS canon with FIM now...

Not just EQG but some of the comics and some of the chapter books as well. This is the ultimate tie in season.

I know.

Surely, this finale will have the biggest impact on the show since Twilight got her wings back in Season 3...

I know that everyone is truly showing that friendship is INDEED magic...but honestly when I saw this, I really see a lot of potential parallels between Syrigan and Spike.

Take a closer look at it, and think about it if you have time. I have to go to work, so for now that is all I really can say about it...:twilightsmile:


Yeah, I agree with this 100%. This finale is by far one of the more well-balenced ones in my opinion, all of the mane six got to play their part, the show expanded upon the lore of Equestria, Starlight got her own role that didn't feel forced or OOC, we got to see the Legends in the flesh, and we finally got an origin for the Elements of Harmony!

Now I know a few fans are going to state that this messes up the established timeline for what happened1000 years ago, but I think i have the perfect way to tie it all together.

Hmmm... nice list.

It makes sense, Celestia said he didn't quite understand friendship the way Twilight did. Plus there's the fact that he came from a much harsher time for Equestria as opposed to what it has developed into.

On another note Legends of magic Issue 6 has rendered that issue of Fiendship is Magic non-canon.

Meh, good 95.5% of them claimed that he was Discord the entire time.

None really. Everyone was in-character.

Considering there was that little nod towards the movie mentioning Seaponies, I hope so!

There are always ways to work around certain canonical factors in the show. Word of advice: the flexible your head-canons are, the more fun you can have adapting the canon material to them!


I think unicorns are used more because it's easier for them to go mad with power. I mean, have you ever tried going mad without power? It's boring, no-one listens to you.

Oh, no-one has forgotten. In fact, I've been holding on to this for a while:

Right now I hope they make some of FIENDship is Magic canon as well. I really want to see reformed King Sombra, Radiant Hope, and Shadowlock on the show. They also have perfect jobs for the new Friendship school in Season 8.

King Sombra can be the security guard for the school since he can nullify magic.
Radiant Hope can be the nurse or healer since her healing talent is so powerful she can literally recreate entire bodies for a Pony.
Shadowlock can be a history chaperone since he can literally send ponies into old hisotry where they can experience what happened in the past themselves.

Not to mention all the interaction they can have.

That line made me wonder if there are seaponies that aren't transformed hippogriffs.

Not a bad idea... but at the moment only the Legends of Magic comics are directly canon to the series. That's why they made them a separate comic series instead of just having it take place in the main comic lineup. As I see it: anything outside of the show is only "semi-canon" until the show fully acknowledges it.

They have made MLP FIM Issue #51 and on canon with all the foreshadowing so there is a possibility they can make some of the other comics canon as well. Although some people might not be happy if that happens.

This one's a pretty tightly-knit story that hits all the right notes for me. Fun interactions between all of the characters, world-building, and the resolution of a thousand-year-old friendship problem, all with what feels like relatively minimal contrivance.

It's a little odd that they didn't enlist the help of the princesses before going after the Pony of Shadows, but, eh, I'll take that over them somehow getting captured or incapacitated.

All in all, a good way to end the season.

It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time


That was one of the only things that bothered me about this finale. This was almost a complete parallel with Nightmare Moon, and they didn't think to call in Luna for help? She would have been the BEST one to consult.

I mean yes, save the world now, reunion later, but seriously. This would have covered both.

Ha! I like, I like.

It would not surprise me in the slightest if they were introduced in Season 8.

I'm not saying there isn't, after all they also had issue 59 tie in to "Secrets and Pies", I'm all for it. Like I said, I prefer to wait until the show directly acknowledges it as canon.

4710190 I like canon Starswirl, but it's another plotbuster having him loose in Equestria. Now everytime some crisis arises, the author has to answer, "Why doesn't Celestia handle it? Why doesn't Luna handle it? Why doesn't Discord handle it? Why doesn't Starswirl handle it?" We have too many super-powerful friendly non-protagonists on the loose for a show that routinely has the Mane 6 tackle existential threats to Equestria. All these episodes have to spend more and more time as the show progresses explaining why all the existing supers don't deal with the threat. Or else just pretend they don't exist, like this episode did.

4710273 4710278 Just another example of having too many supers. Obviously Twilight should have called in Celestia and Luna before putting the entire world at risk, but that would complicate the plot a lot, so the writers just gave her the idiot ball.

Some nice things about the episode, but MLP has yet to do a decent villain redemption, because they have trouble showing real villainy, or showing the kind of real-world ugliness that can make someone a villain, or doing a realistic psychological exploration of horrible things, or taking the time needed for that great amount of change in a pony. They should stop trying, and get back to friendship problems, which is what they're good at.

Genuinely the best season finale

I liked this finale a lot, I really did, but I feel these episodes more than any really highlight the show's need to adopt a serial format. Soooo much stuff was crammed into this finale that could've stood to be fleshed out more. More interactions between the Mane 6, their respective Pillars, Stygian, and the others would've gone a long way toward filling out the narrative and given the final confrontation with the PoS the weight it was trying to convey. Starlight rises up and becomes the voice of reason and understanding, ultimately using her past experience as a paradigm to show Starswirl that Stygian can be reasoned with. That's superb character development!

But everything rushed by so fast that I couldn't get absorbed into the story, as sound as it was. It's an issue that the show's had ever since MMC, but now it's come to a point where my interest is noticeably waning. I crave fleshed out narratives, is what I'm saying, and the show's denied it to me for longer than I think I can put up with. It's a subjective criticism, of course, but I don't feel like it's asking too much out of Hasbro to take the serial approach moving forward. Other children's shows have done it and been successful (Avatar, for example) as well as all the big, famous animes.

tl;dr The episode was good, but it should've been double or even triple the episode count.

Lol, when I was reading your post, I thought you were calling the Pony of Shadows something else!

Great analysis, by the way.

4710284 And it's only going to get more pronounced as the show goes on. At their rate of amassing new allies, they'll soon need a Thanos-level villain to pose a credible threat if everyone is available.

Or they could just worf everyone as usual. That takes far less effort. :unsuresweetie:

The thing that bugs me here is that the entire conflict basically starts because Twilight has a death grip on the idiot ball. She spends days trying to find a way to set Starswirl and his friends free, and yet at no point does she even consider the possibility that doing so would also release the Pony of Shadows. It's like... the only reason why the PoS is imprisoned is Starswirl and his friends also being imprisoned, so if you freed one wouldn't that also free the other?

Of course it would!

But Twilight and her dumb ass didn't think that would happen, even though it's such an obvious example of cause-and-effect that even a kindergartner would be able to understand it. So yeah, that's basically how the conflict gets kicked off.

This special is a step up from both season 5 and 6's finales. There is a lot to like here, even if the overall package felt a bit messy.

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