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FanOfMostEverything


"[FoME] manages the impossible combination of being an actual legitimate nerd while staying unabashedly pleasant." —Aragón

More Blog Posts1112

  • Today
    Friendship is Card Games: Pinkie Pie and the Rockin' Ponypalooza Party!

    This week, we return to the Berrow catalogue. While the previous entry offers the closest thing we have to Cadence’s canonical backstory, this one has actually been referenced in the show. Ponypalooza’s mentioned in “The Mane Attraction,” among other details. Let’s begin.

    Read More

    4 comments · 33 views
  • Thursday
    Deca Sanctuary

    Ten days remain for Imposing Sovereigns III, and while a few entries have come in, I suspect the bulk has yet to arrive. In order to help that suspicion, now's the point where I ask if people need more time. So, how goes it?

    20 comments · 208 views
  • 1 week
    Friendship is Card Games: The Knights of Harmony

    And so the unsung underbelly of G4 draws to a close… more or less. There’s that intergenerational crossover coming up. But this is certainly the finale to Season 10, and to the FiM line. 102 issues isn’t a bad run, and that’s not counting alll the spinoffs. Let’s see how it wraps up.

    Read More

    10 comments · 263 views
  • 1 week
    Expansion // Explosion

    "The series premiere, but different" is a timeworn genre in most fandoms, and pony is no different. A good chunk of the authors here have put their own spin on Twilight arriving in Ponyville and that first journey into the Everfree, including me. But this one is special.

    Read More

    6 comments · 337 views
  • 2 weeks
    Friendship is Card Games: d20 Pony, Ch. 2

    This week, we return to d20 Pony, the ongoing adventures and explorations of Trailblazer. (It’s also my birthday, but that has little bearing on the cards. :derpytongue2:)

    Read More

    9 comments · 168 views
Mar
25th
2018

Friendship is Card Games: School Daze · 10:53am Mar 25th, 2018

And so we begin anew, with perhaps the greatest, most insidious evil the Mane Six have ever confronted: Educational bureaucracy.

I’m not being sarcastic. I could tell you stories there.

We open with a lightning-speed recap of the movie, which was apparently meant to happen just before this episode, since this is the first time the Bearers are seeing the expanded Cutie Map. The thing must work according to Civilization logic, displaying everywhere that Equestria is aware of, or at least Twilight Sparkle and her underlings.
(As a side note, add the Pillars to the list of potential Equestrian defenses that vanished for the duration of the movie.)

Tempest as a wandering disciple of friendship? I can get behind that, and it’s not like they’re going to get the big names voicing their characters on the show. (See also General Seaspray, who exists entirely so Queen Novo doesn’t have to.)

Bit of a leap of logic to go from an adventuring party to school faculty, but I can definitely see how Twilight’s mind would make it. That said, her questions to Celestia are more than a little bizarre. I guess she doesn’t remember much from her time at CSGU.

Hmm. Twilight has no familiarity with Equestria’s educational bureaucracy. Assuming the EEA isn’t an independent third party.

Yeesh. Bit melodramatic. Wouldn’t be surprised if pony Cinch used to chair this association. Also, Mr. Waddle is apparently on the Ominous Council of Academic Standards. Also also, just to make sure you know Chancellor Neighsay is evil, they gave him a goatee and the voice of the Brain. (And now I kind of wish he’d asked Pinkie if she were pondering what he was pondering…)
Also, wow, that speed reading.

I’m with Dash. This is all happening very quickly, from construction to uprooting the Bearers’ lives. Teaching is a full-time job, and even Pinkie has some pre-existing obligations in the form of however many dozens of parties she has scheduled this week. The others have even more demands on their time, from farm work to Wonderbolt duty to a burgeoning fashion empire. I’m really not sure how the show’s going to reconcile all of their past achievements with their future expectations.

Nice touch with the busts of the Pillars… though that does raise the question of where they all are at the moment.

For goodness sake, did the other Bearers even have time to prepare any kind of curriculum?

Seems like the school’s open to all ages, given the number of adult background ponies wandering the halls.

Heh. First thing on Applejack’s chalkboard: Screw oranges, screw strawberries.

I do love how quickly the various classes go off the rails.

While Twilight corralling her friends is the transparently wrong choice, it is neat to see that phylogenetic tree on Fluttershy’s chalkboard.

Lovely bit of irony. “We’re just too cool for friendship, right buddy?”

You know it’s bad when Starlight Glimmer thinks you need to branch out and try something different.

To paraphrase Grant Allen, these six aren’t letting their schooling interfere with their friendship.

Hmm. I wonder if the portal spell is easier or more difficult than straight up teleportation.

Heh. Thorax goes full fainting goat when Ocella crashed into one of the side towers.

Okay, fine, Neighsay is the secretary of education. He isn’t the secretary of defense. He [i[certainly isn’t part of Equestria’s diplomatic corps. Even if he’s within his rights to close down the school, Twilight can still inform Celestia of precisely who is responsible for the fivefold international incident.

Or she can mope in a nest of pillows. Well, I can understand that. One of the poor dear’s dreams just got mercilessly crushed. She failed at high-level friendship and education. No wonder she’s in such a deep funk.

I do love Angel’s expression as Fluttershy tries to get him to hug Twilight “You’re serious? … Fine.” The way his little ego gets crushed when it doesn’t work is a lovely bit of schadenfreude.

Uh, Rarity? When your friend just goofed up royally, maybe don’t make her a dress reminiscent of a jester’s cap.

I have to agree with Starlight. Twilight gave up way too easily, though again, I can understand why. It’s a nice touch that it’s Starlight in favor of bucking the established system and instituting one of Twilight’s own.
Also, the thought occurs: Could they get Starlight’s other friends in on this? Sure, Sunburst is looking after Flurry Heart, but Maud and Trixie could… Okay, yeah, I just want to get Trixie into a classroom situation and watch the possibly literal fireworks.

I’m pretty sure this confirms that Pinkie has mental control over her party cannons, both in positioning and in firing them.

Hmm. “Creature” as a collective term for all sophonts. Interesting choice, though we did have the Convocation of Creatures in the comics. It works out.

Huh. Rarity speaking with the dragons. Maybe she brought snacks.

Double huh. Applejack speaking with the hippogriffs? On Mount Aris, the island? I’d have sent Fluttershy just for the sake of logistics. (Dash speaking with the griffons is just common sense, much like Pinkie and the yaks. Though Pinkie also has an in with the hippogriffs through Seastar. Really living up to that Friendship Ambassador title.)

Ooh, they kept the redesigned throne room from the movie, complete with an actual throne for Luna! Only took them seven seasons or so on that one.

The changelings still consider themselves an empire? Well, I suppose the hive’s roughly the height of the Crystal Palace…

Pinkie isn’t completely off-track with regards to that shrimp hypothesis. The rainbow death is scary enough without magic…

It was downright painful watching the cast ever so slowly connect the obvious dots as they deduced what Sandbar was up to.

Huh. The Castle of the Two Sisters counts as pre-Equestrian? I suppose that was where Stygian first confronted the Pillars and became the Pony of Darkness, but that then begs the question of why ponies built that castle in the middle of both what would be Equestria and a murderous hellwood.

Interesting to note that hippogriffs can transform to and from seapony at will. And seaponies definitely have lungs. Neither was certain until now.
Also, why is it these stairs that Silverstream registers as stairs? Especially when there are some on Mount Aris?

Apparently changeling folklore presents other species as “strange.” I’d love to get more detail there.

And coming back to murderous hellwoods, we have pukwudgies, from Lanape and Wampanoag folklore (and sci-fi comedy horror films from the 80s.) Those pukwugies were more like malicious fae than bad-tempered porcupines, though they were noted for their skill with poison arrows. Especially interesting is that Pukwudgies were once friendly to humans, but turned against them. That bears some consideration, given how my first thought when the pukwudgies started attacking the students was “Oh God, the bushwoolies have gone feral!”

Hmm. A unicorn and an alicorn touching horns to generate a rapidly expanding force shield. Where have I seen that before…

Any time someone writes the words “twenty percent cooler” into Rainbow Dash’s mouth, I want to hit them with a rolled-up newspaper.

Neighsay may be a bigot, an ass, and an accidental warmonger, but he’s not wrong about Twilight using unqualified teachers… for a traditional school.

All through the second part of the premiere, I wondered how Twilight was going to bypass the EEA rules. And… well, I honestly don’t think her method should work. It seems like she’s just shy of going full royal fiat and saying “It doesn’t matter because I say it doesn’t.” The lesson of “One size doesn’t fit all in education” works… much as it did in “Testing Testing 1-2-3.” But this workaround feels incredibly iffy, especially when Celestia explicitly said “Not even a princess can do what she wants when shaping young pony minds.” I suppose when there are nonpony minds involved, it’s fine. :ajbemused:
Of course, Celestia said that before Chancellor Neighsay very nearly started a world war. I’d assume he’d be fired if I didn’t expect to see him again in the season finale. Also, I’m pretty sure we can add him to the list of villains who Twilight defeated when Celestia could only waylay them. :raritywink:

Photo Finish is apparently the only photographer in Equestria.

Heh. Draconic psychological warfare.

So… What position of authority does Grandpa Gruff actually have in Griffonstone? And is “Grandpa” some manner of title, or is Gallus actually Gilda’s cousin, or even brother? (Assuming, of course, Gilda is related to Gruff.)

In the end, it’s too soon for me to tell how good this episode is. Yes, it could’ve been better executed, but I’m looking at the larger picture here. This is a season premiere, one which will likely set the tone of its season far more than, say, “Celestial Advice.” Its consequences are too potentially far-reaching to judge in the current vacuum. This could be an interesting new direction for the show, or it could be a hard left turn into a brick wall. We’ll see in time. (And for those of you’ve who’ve seen the leaks for this season, please don’t bring them up in the comments. I’m trying to go into this as spoiler-free as possible.)

For now, time to turn in this week’s assignment:

Sardonic Griffin WW
Creature — Griffin Warrior
Flying
Sardonic Griffin can’t attack or block alone.
”Oh, sure, send in the griffin. He won’t mind, his kind are all bloodthirsty savages. Yeah. No. Not without backup.”
3/1

Xenophobia 1W
Enchantment
2W, Discard a card: Destroy target creature that dealt damage to you this turn.
2W, Sacrifice Xenophobia: Destroy target creature that dealt damage to you this turn.
”New and unusual” can mean “alien and unpredictable.”

Lockdown 1WW
Enchantment — Aura
Enchant permanent
Enchanted permanent’s activated abilities can’t be activated unless they’re mana abilities. If enchanted permanent is a creature, it can’t attack or block.
”Such flagrant infractions will not be tolerated.”
—Chancellor Neighsay

The Storm War 1WW
Enchantment — Saga
(As this Saga enters and after your draw step, add a lore counter. Sacrifice after III.)
I, II — Put a petrification counter on target creature you don’t control. It gains defender and becomes a colorless artifact in addition to its other types. Its activated abilities can’t be activated.
III — Destroy up to four target artifacts and/or enchantments.

Curse of Inflexibility 3W
Enchantment — Aura Curse
Enchant player
At the beginning of enchanted player’s upkeep, that player chooses a card type. Until end of turn, they can’t cast spells that aren’t of the chosen type. (Lands aren’t spells.)
Staying the course doesn’t work when it takes you off a cliff.

Astral Gate U
Instant
Exile target creature. As long as that card is exiled, its owner may cast it.
Chancellor Neighsay sees most of the Equestrian countryside as an unnecessary extravagance.

Timid Lovebug 1U
Creature — Insect Pony
Defender, flying
Whenever Timid Lovebug blocks a creature, you may have it become a copy of that creature until end of turn.
”You probably like yourself more than you’ll like me.”
0/3

Novo’s Disciple 2UU
Creature — Shapeshifter
As Novo’s Disciple enters the battlefield, it becomes your choice of a 3/2 Hippogriff with flying or a 2/3 Merfolk with hexproof. (It’s no longer a Shapeshifter.)
Years of living near the Protean Pearl have infused its magic into her very core.
*/*

Airborne Egghead 3U
Creature — Pegasus Advisor
Flying
When Airborne Egghead enters the battlefield, draw a card.
”I keep telling her there’s no shame in being knowledgeable. Maybe she’ll believe me some day.”
—Princess Twilight Sparkle
2/2

Mantis-Claw Scuttler 3U
Creature — Shrimp
6U: Monstrosity 3. (If this creature isn’t monstrous, put three +1/+1 counters on it and it becomes monstrous.)
When Mantis-Claw Scuttler becomes monstrous, tap all nonblue creatures your opponents control.
3/3

General Seaspray 3UU
Legendary Creature — Hippogriff Soldier
Flash
Flying
You may cast Hippogriff and Merfolk spells as though they had flash.
Whenever General Seaspray or another Hippogriff or Merfolk enters the battlefield under your control, that creature gets +0/+3 until end of turn.
3/3

“Friendship Always Wins” 1B
Enchantment — Song
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a verse counter on “Friendship Always Wins”.
1B, Sacrifice “Friendship Always Wins”: Choose X creature types, where X is the number of verse counters on “Friendship Always Wins”. For each type chosen this way, return a creature card of that type from your graveyard to your hand.

Vicious Technicality 2B
Enchantment
Whenever a player draws a card, that player loses 1 life.
1: The next time you would draw a card this turn, put the top card of your library into your hand instead.
Neighsay’s first mistake was trying to use bureaucracy against Twilight Sparkle.

Vespid Warform 3B
Creature — Insect
Flying, menace
Champion an Insect or Shapeshifter (When this enters the battlefield, sacrifice it unless you exile another Insect or Shapeshifter you control. When this leaves the battlefield, that card returns to the battlefield.)
5/4

Clumsy Yak 2R
Creature — Ox Warrior
Whenever Clumsy Yak attacks or blocks, flip a coin. If you lose the flip, prevent all combat damage it would deal this turn.
”Yak meant to do that!”
4/3

Restless Students 2R
Creature — Pony Citizen
At the beginning of each player’s end step, if that player didn’t cast a spell this turn, Restless Students deals 2 damage to them.
Twilight’s insistence on EEA regulations made for a less than engaging learning environment.
2/2

Culture Clash 2RR
Sorcery
Culture Clash deals damage to each creature equal to the number of creature types among creatures that creature’s controller controls.
”Can’t we all just get along?”
—Princess Twilight Sparkle

Spine-Volley Pukwudgie 2RR
Creature — Beast
First strike
When Spine-Volley Pukwudgie enters the battlefield, it deals X damage to any target, where X is the number of Beasts you control.
”Some critters don’t exactly make the best first impression.”
—Fluttershy, Bearer of Kindness
2/2

Press-Ganged Dragon 3R
Creature — Dragon
Flying
Tap three untapped creatures you control: Gain control of Press-Ganged Dragon. Any player may activate this ability.
”I order you to make friends!”
—Dragonlord Ember
3/2

Further Afield 1G
Sorcery
Search your library for a land card that doesn’t have the same name as a land you control, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
The Map of Harmony expanded to match the Bearers’ broadened horizons.

Yak Chorus 3GG
Creature — Ox Band
Finale — Whenever you sacrifice a Song, creatures you control get +1/+1 and gain trample until end of turn.
Every popular yak song can double as a war chant, and vice versa.
4/4

“School of Friendship” WU
Enchantment — Song
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a verse counter on “School of Friendship”.
(wu), Sacrifice “School of Friendship”: Detain up to X target nonland permanents your opponents control, where X is the number of verse counters on “School of Friendship”. Activate this ability only any time you could cast a sorcery.

Fire Away 2(ur)
Instant
If U was spent to cast Fire Away, return up to one target creature with toughness 3 or greater to its owner’s hand. If R was spent to cast Fire Away, it deals 2 damage to up to one target creature or planeswalker. (Do both if UR was spent.)

Pinkie, Ecstatic Tutor 1WBR
Legendary Planeswalker — Pinkie
+1: Create a 1/1 white, black, and red Pony creature token with haste.
-2: Discard a card. Search your library for a card, put that card into your hand, then shuffle your library.
-7: Search your library for two nonland cards and reveal them. You may cast those cards without paying their mana costs. Then shuffle your library.
4

Tempest, Twilight’s Herald 2W(br)
Legendary Creature — Unicorn Soldier
First strike
When Tempest, Twilight’s Herald enters the battlefield, search your library for a legendary card and reveal it. If that card has alicorn, put it into your hand, then shuffle your library Otherwise, shuffle your library and put that card on top of it.
3/3

Education Council 2WU
Creature — Pony Advisor
At the beginning of each player’s draw step, that player draws an additional card.
Each player can’t draw cards except during their draw step.
Equestria’s schools are strictly regimented and regulated to optimize their performance, with little consideration for alternative learning methods.
1/4

Chancellor Neighsay XWU
Legendary Creature — Unicorn Advisor
Chancellor Neighsay enters the battlefield with X prohibition counters on it.
Whenever a player casts a spell with converted mana cost equal to the number of prohibition counters on Chancellor Neighsay, counter that spell.
2/2

Sparkle Academy
Land
When Sparkle Academy enters the battlefield, you gain 1 life.
T: Add C.
1, T: Add R, W, or U.
Where the world learns to come together.

Comments ( 22 )

Zimmerwald actually explained quite satisfactorily why isn’t Celestia intervening: EEA is not a government organization at all.

I.e. modern Equestrian government delegates certain issues of education to independent organizations, which essentially operate through contract law. Wouldn’t be the first time, see Trade Ya! for example.

I suspect Grandpa Gruff is in fact almost every living griffon's grandfather, and is in fact the closest thing to a ruler the Griffon Kingdom currently has :rainbowhuh:

Its funny, reading Knighty's sitwide blog post synopsis was a huge kick in the gut of pure shame/fear at even the merest imagining of potential cringe that my brain conjured, but your synopsis here, FoME, is helping deal with that through finding me ways to reconcile or forgive the premier of enough cinema-sins to find the bravery to watch it for real. Thanks!

Tempest as a wandering disciple of friendship? I can get behind that, and it’s not like they’re going to get the big names voicing their characters on the show. (See also General Seaspray, who exists entirely so Queen Novo doesn’t have to.)

I wouldn't have minded if they had recasted Tempest, Queen Novo, and Skystar with voice actors who sounded close enough to the originals. After all, they already recasted the voices of some of the fan-favorite background ponies.

Also also, just to make sure you know Chancellor Neighsay is evil, they gave him a goatee and the voice of the Brain. (And now I kind of wish he’d asked Pinkie if she were pondering what he was pondering…)

Hey, he may come back later, so there's still a chance for that to happen.

Teaching is a full-time job, and even Pinkie has some pre-existing obligations in the form of however many dozens of parties she has scheduled this week. The others have even more demands on their time, from farm work to Wonderbolt duty to a burgeoning fashion empire. I’m really not sure how the show’s going to reconcile all of their past achievements with their future expectations.

I concur. I guess Rarity, Fluttershy, and the Apples could hire employees to help out with their businesses, but Dash is already juggling two jobs. How is she going to fit in a third?

Heh. First thing on Applejack’s chalkboard: Screw oranges, screw strawberries.

Pears are acceptable, though.

Hmm. I wonder if the portal spell is easier or more difficult than straight up teleportation.

I don't know, but I got Dr. Strange vibes from the portals. The goatee helped with that, too.

Any time someone writes the words “twenty percent cooler” into Rainbow Dash’s mouth, I want to hit them with a rolled-up newspaper.

It was hilarious six or seven years ago, but that joke has diminishing returns every time it's used.

In the end, it’s too soon for me to tell how good this episode is.

Yeah, I think it's better to wait and see how this fits into the context of this entire season. This season does appear to be taking a sharp left turn from where both Season 7 and the movie seemed to be building toward, but that doesn't make it bad, per se. I'm trying to keep an open mind about it (as much as I'd love to see more of the Pillars instead of the new students).

I came into this season with the intention of writing Harshwhinny as a massive racist and found the actual canon narrative beat me to the punch.

Not gonna lie, as soon as Celestia brought up the concept of a Department of Education, I was already yelling. The DoE is my mortal nemesis, and it's good to see that even magical princess ponies have to deal with their bullshit. Although, the EEA is alot less "teach 6 year olds 60 weeks worth of math in one school year", and more "Cause an international incident and nearly start Equis War I". I'm not sure which is worse, honestly.

Also...

"Pinkie, are you pondering what I'm pondering?"

"I think so, Neighsay, but wouldn't the party cannon frighten the chickens?"

Huh. The Castle of the Two Sisters counts as pre-Equestrian? I suppose that was where Stygian first confronted the Pillars and became the Pony of Darkness, but that then begs the question of why ponies built that castle in the middle of both what would be Equestria and a murderous hellwood.

The Castle was constructed at the very beginning of Equestria, when Celestia and Luna were chosen to rule over the new unified land. It was built in the middle of the Everfree Forest for practical, defensive reasons. It's all explained in The Journal of the Two Sisters.

And coming back to murderous hellwoods, we have pukwudgies, from Lanape and Wampanoag folklore (and sci-fi comedy horror films from the 80s.)

I don't care what the hell name the show used for those things, they were BLATANTLY Crites. Every single thing about them from their design to their mannerisms was ripped directly from the Critters films.

So… What position of authority does Grandpa Gruff actually have in Griffonstone? And is “Grandpa” some manner of title, or is Gallus actually Gilda’s cousin, or even brother? (Assuming, of course, Gilda is related to Gruff.)

Gilda explicitly said "my grandpa Gruff's recipe" in the Griffonstone episode, so yeah, they're related. As for "authority"...you've seen the shit condition Griffonstone's in, right? I'm pretty sure Griffons don't have any kind of government. Like, at all. Not even a loose structure beyond "gimme bits and I'll do x." Griffonstone strikes me as an example of a functionally defunct society--one where the government has collapsed entirely, but the citizens keep on doing what they've always done, and so on, and so on down the line, until they're so used to living in a dump of a nation with nobody enforcing any rule of law that they just don't think about it.

This could be an interesting new direction for the show, or it could be a hard left turn into a brick wall.

See also: Scrubs.

4825040

I'm not sure how canon that journal is anymore, according to the Legends of Magic series Starswirl was still preparing Luna and Celestia to rule over Equestria when he left with the pillars.

I've never heard of that movie but I think you might be right.
i.pinimg.com/originals/f7/39/91/f739912132ba49d7ac6ca5cf26356122.jpg

FiM #62 actually revealed that Griffonstone is overseen by a council of Griffon Lords, so they have a government. I was actually hoping to see Lord Gestal but I guess they are taking the EQG approach and not wanting to make the comics required reading.

I hate the scrubs comparison. The only reason it didn't work on Scrubs was because they were trying to retool the show with a new cast after it had properly ended the previous season.


I enjoyed the premier but I have seen the leaks so I'm not as freaked out about this idea.

I'm gonna go along with the theory that portals exist exclusively for dramatic entrances/exits.

God yesterday was awesome wasn't it? MLP is back and we got a new batch of EQG shorts with possibly the best Fluttershy song ever, a nice treat after a crappy week of school.

Any time someone writes the words “twenty percent cooler” into Rainbow Dash’s mouth, I want to hit them with a rolled-up newspaper.

From memory, I think this is actually the first time in the show itself since the original. We had "20 percent less cool" in Rainbow Rocks, I think it's been in the comics and/or chapter books. But not in another actual episode -- until now. (Okay, it was "220% cooler" here, but that's close enough.)

I’m with Dash. This is all happening very quickly, from construction to uprooting the Bearers’ lives. Teaching is a full-time job, and even Pinkie has some pre-existing obligations in the form of however many dozens of parties she has scheduled this week. The others have even more demands on their time, from farm work to Wonderbolt duty to a burgeoning fashion empire. I’m really not sure how the show’s going to reconcile all of their past achievements with their future expectations.

This right here was one of my biggest niggles with the premiere. Take Rarity -- she has a full-time fashion design career to take care of, on top of three stores in three different cities. That's not going to leave much time for teaching. Or Rainbow -- what's she going to do when she has to choose between teaching her classes and performing in a Wonderbolt show? I doubt this is going to be addressed, and I suspect this will bother me all season.

On a related note, Neighsay actually made a very good point. How will the mane six reconcile their duties to the school and the students with the fact that the Map could call any of them to trek halfway across the world at a moment's notice?

Heh. First thing on Applejack’s chalkboard: Screw oranges, screw strawberries.

"Uh, I don't imagine that certain recent experiences might have convinced you to reconsider your fruit-based jingoism?"

"Certainly. They taught me that apples and pears are worthy. All other fruits are trash, of course."

Hmm. I wonder if the portal spell is easier or more difficult than straight up teleportation.

It's certainly a lot flashier.

Huh. The Castle of the Two Sisters counts as pre-Equestrian? I suppose that was where Stygian first confronted the Pillars and became the Pony of Darkness, but that then begs the question of why ponies built that castle in the middle of both what would be Equestria and a murderous hellwood.

I suppose it depends on how you define "Equestria". If you assume it to mean the current diarchy, then it does just barely predate Celestia and Luna's reign.

As for the forest, I've never been very clear on whether the castle was always in the Everfree. The impression I tend to get is that it was clear of the untrod wilderness and part of civilized Equestria back in Starswirl's day and the original dual reign of the sisters, then Celestia and Nightmare Moon's fight tore the place apart, and the Everfree either grew on top of the ruins or expanded to swallow them after their abandonment.

So… What position of authority does Grandpa Gruff actually have in Griffonstone? And is “Grandpa” some manner of title, or is Gallus actually Gilda’s cousin, or even brother? (Assuming, of course, Gilda is related to Gruff.)

I doubt anything official. Griffonstone doesn't seem to be at the point where an actual government is likely to be a thing anytime soon. I imagine that Gruff is likely some equivalent of an unofficial village elder.

To crudely paraphrase Pratchett, griffons don't have leaders, and Gruff is the most respected of the leaders they don't have.

4825056

In regards to The Journal, I believe that it also stated that Hurricane was the only stallion among the Founders, whereas "Forgotten Friendship" seems to have established Clover as also being a guy.

In regards to the transforming hippogriffs, I'm just gonna quote myself:

Actually, I don't think that's the case. Something neat I noticed was the necklaces Sea Spray and Silverstream were wearing. The shards in the middle, based on the color, seem to be fragments of the magic transformation pearl. Queen Novo probably gave them out so her people could go back and forth from their new and old homes more easily.

Though Pinkie also has an in with the hippogriffs through Seastar.

*Skystar

I thought they were Bushwoolies too :rainbowlaugh:

And then came the spikes :twilightoops:

Ooh, they kept the redesigned throne room from the movie, complete with an actual throne for Luna! Only took them seven seasons or so on that one.

I note that they unfortunately haven't added that change to the intro theme, which still shows the old throne room :ajbemused:

Oh look, another post with Moth being unnecessarily rude and making extremely bad and uninformed points.

4825113 Princess Twilight Sparkle Part 1&2 show the Castle being in the middle of the forest, iirc.

“Oh God, the bushwoolies have gone feral!”

I know, right? They missed out on a nice G1 tie-in!

Yeah, when Twilight started messing with how everyone was teaching I would have immediately stopped her and explained how badly a regimented school system like that ruined my educational experience.

To wit, my Calculus teacher wouldn't acknowledged my raised hand for five minutes at a time, despite my sitting in front of her desk. This was because I had just been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome and so asked her if she'd give me my homework at the start of class instead of the end; she asked "what if you have questions?" I replied "I have the book."

That wasn't the only issue I had, but it's the one that stands out to me the most.

On a lighter note, I was very amused at the existence of pukwudgies because that happens to be my house at Ilvermorny.

I can get behind that, and it’s not like they’re going to get the big names voicing their characters on the show. (See also General Seaspray, who exists entirely so Queen Novo doesn’t have to.)

This legitimately frustrated me. They spent all their movie's budget on a bunch of celebrity voices for all these new characters. They made them central to the plot, while also completely forgetting most of their pre-existing characters, who logically should have been around doing something. And then they try to pick up right where the movie left off on the show, only with all the new characters gone because they can't afford them anymore. It reeks of short-sightedness, and it makes it all pointless.

They may as well have killed off Tempest alongside the Storm King for all the lasting impact her redemption arc left. I mean, if they can't use her again outside of another movie, then why not? It's the same either way.

Bit of a leap of logic to go from an adventuring party to school faculty, but I can definitely see how Twilight’s mind would make it.

I’m really not sure how the show’s going to reconcile all of their past achievements with their future expectations.

Present Perfect had quite the epic rant about the Friendship School premise, and about this element of it in particular. I happen to agree with him on that. The Mane Six are a diverse bunch of characters with their own lives, careers, and aspirations. I can believe them finding time off from their regular duties to still hang out as friends and go on adventures from time to time, but the idea of them either taking on second jobs or giving up their own dreams for this project is simply unbelievable to me.

Yeesh. Bit melodramatic. Wouldn’t be surprised if pony Cinch used to chair this association.

Somebody should totally write that. The world needs more Cinch fics.

It was downright painful watching the cast ever so slowly connect the obvious dots as they deduced what Sandbar was up to.

It really does feel like the show's been dumbing itself down more and more with every season, and this was a prime example of that. Definite low point of the episode.

So… What position of authority does Grandpa Gruff actually have in Griffonstone?

I honestly have no idea what he was doing there, other than being a familiar face to the audience. Last time we saw Griffonstone in the show, it was an anarchy, and Grandpa Gruff was the one who explained that it was. Yet in this episode, suddenly there's a griffon army, and he has the capacity to threaten its use and meet with foreign leaders. Now, the comics have indeed implied a Griffonstone restoration, with characters that seem to be diplomats or royals suddenly coming out of nowhere, but the show has been ignoring the comics harder than ever lately, so that's hardly evidence of anything. And even in those stories, Grandpa Gruff was never shown as anyone important.

The only explanation I can think of is that in show canon, it's Gilda heading the Griffonstone restoration (in a rare case of me successfully predicting something in a fic), and Grandpa Gruff does indeed have that authority through nepotism. Though, even then, you'd think he would have an official title or something. And this still wouldn't clear up his relation to the kid at all.

In the end, it’s too soon for me to tell how good this episode is.

I felt much the same. On reflection... I think I'd say it's a bad episode that I managed to mostly enjoy in spite of that. I thought I'd hate the friendship school premise, but as dumb as it is, I just can't get mad at it. Maybe it's the new student characters, and how much time we spent following them. They may be a little flat so far, but at least they were something different. I'd rather follow these guys for a season than bring back Tempest for another arc about a reformed unicorn angsting over having nearly destroyed the world because her feelings were hurt.

Or maybe I just expelled the last of my bile in my season seven review, and I'll need time for it to recharge. Time will tell.

4825027
"Common Core Math", where 5x3 does not equal 5+5+5, but equals 3+3+3+3+3, because those are two different equations. I am not kidding.

4824993
Perhaps Griffon culture uses "grandpa" similar to how some cultures refer to all old women as "grandma". I'd come up with an example but it's too midnight for me to go looking for it.

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