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Oliver


Let R = { x | x ∉ x }, then R ∈ R ⟺ R ∉ R... or is it?

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Sep
8th
2019

Points of Canon: S9x19 - Dragon Dropped · 6:31pm Sep 8th, 2019

So we have leaks again. I knew it was only a matter of time. Anyway, on with the show…

  • Chronology markers: Spike has wings, requiring Molt Down. School of Friendship is in session, requiring School Daze. Otherwise, this episode can move up and down a lot.
  • “I realize this is last-minute, but I’ve decided on a quick trip to the gem cave!” You mean, the one that Maud lives in now, that caved in during Rock Solid Friendship?… Did anyone actually clear up the cave-in? Later, Rarity leaves it through a ground-based exit, rather than a hole in the roof, indicating that someone actually did, though nobody explains how and no trace remains. The hole does reappear by the end of the episode, though.
  • “I am on an urgent mission to find some faceted iridescence for my new design, and I can’t think of anypony I’d rather have along than my favorite basket holder/bodyguard Spike.” Notice “anypony” rather than, say, “anycreature.”
  • Spike’s room contains a poster featuring three masked ponies. Two of these appear to be alicorns, the third being a pegasus. A variation on Power Ponies? Notice also what appears to be stirrups on the cyan alicorn one.
  • “Oh, no! Is that the time?!” Once again, we see a 8-hours-per-revolution clock – ponies occasionally use those, and I remind you that they’re a valid, if confusing, method of displaying time: In a 24-hour day, such a clock makes three complete revolutions instead of two on a 12-hour revolution clock. If the start of the first revolution is 00:00, it’s either 23:52, 07:52 or 15:52. Seeing as how Spike claims he needs to get to post office “before noon” immediately afterwards, it’s definitely not: the first revolution has to start in such a way that 12:00 is the clock face with both arrows pointing straight upwards, i.e. exactly 8 hours earlier, at 04:00. Which is not a bad time to wake up for those who wake up with the sunrise, depending on season, which could explain the usefulness of an 8-hour clock.
  • “And why would Spike need to go to the post office at all? He sends mail by breathing! Breathing, darling! Breath mail!”

    • Now, we know that originally, the mail went to Celestia’s fireplace only, but apparently Josh Haber doesn’t, so Rarity assumes she doesn’t know the recipient. Which implies that Spike has a lot more options for destinations. The exact limitations remain unknown, but Gabby seems to receive his messages with no specialized hardware or even a fixed location, here.
    • Rarity’s telekinesis can tear apart a gem in the air. Is it just me, or is this the first time telekinesis is used in this manner?
  • “Honestly, Applejack, if you’re going to fill in, you could make an attempt to hold the basket the way Spike would.” Notice the interesting lamp based on a glowing gem. Sure hope this isn’t plutonium or something.
  • “I didn’t realize griffons worked at the Ponyville Post Office.” Notice that Rarity finds this supposition mildly unusual at best. Griffons are now more normal in Central Equestria than they were at the time of Griffon the Brush-Off.
  • “I’m the official mail carrier of Griffonstone.” What, the only one?
  • “Gabby Griffon.”

    • Is that used as a last name?
    • Notice also that apparently, Rarity has avoided meeting Gabby entirely during The Fault In Our Cutie Marks, despite the CMC taking her to do anything they could think of. None of them thought of, say, part-timing with Rarity, it seems.
  • The pile of apology gifts contains primarily comics, books, gems, and a couple of gigantic pieces of LEGO™️ which are the strangest item in the pile. Notice that before, this kind of windfall was sufficient to trigger greed growth…
  • “Grampa Gruff asks for a lot of updates about how Gallus is doing.” Good to know and a bit unexpected.
  • “I cannot decide which shade of purple is the most royal!” The one on the left, duh.
  • Montage:

    • Spike is able to make gem-based decisions by licking them, which is pretty strange, chemically speaking. I wonder which particular quality of a gem does he determine this way?
    • Bon-Bon and Lyra are drinking from the same glass with separate straws today. They have officially become That Couple, it seems.
    • Cosmetic procedures on Spike involve filing his green spikes.
  • “The Great Gem Crevasse of the Crystal Mountains! … It is only accessible once a year, and I thought a little day trip would make a wonderful thank you for all the help you’ve given me over the years.” Another location not marked on maps.

    • Just why exactly would it only be accessible “once a year” and how long is a once? We never actually see the place. Spike later says “Well, to get to the Crevasse, you have to climb across a rope bridge because the air’s too thin to fly!” which would be the first ever indication that any altitude limits to flight even exist, but that still wouldn’t explain the “once a year.”
    • Reaching the Crystal Mountains requires a train trip and involves dressing for cold weather, which suggests somewhere in the Crystal Empire area for location, but not the Crystal Empire itself.
  • “But I’m supposed to meet Gabby today for her rounds.” Why exactly would Gabby have rounds in Ponyville if she doesn’t work in the Ponyville post office, though? Does she deliver every message direct? Really? And there’s enough of them to make rounds? Daily? Really?! Never mind that she seems to pick up mail for Ponyville local delivery later in the episode, even though she claims she doesn’t work there.
  • “I got your scroll.” I.e. dragonfire mail reaches Gabby directly even though she can’t send a reply.
  • “I gotta get back to Griffonstone, but you have to tell me all about the Crevasse tomorrow!” Yes, Gabby commutes by air. Daily. From across the ocean. Right. The space is leaking out of Equestria, there’s a hole somewhere. It’s deflating like a balloon.
  • “Passes to Power Ponypalooza!? For today!?” You’d think Power Ponypalooza is a (presumably, regular) Power Ponies convention, but why would passes be “for today?”.
  • “I had no idea how much walking there is at a Power Pony convention!” Rarity likes Power Ponies sufficiently to cosplay.
  • “And this seemed like the perfect opportunity for you to teach me the game.” Which would imply that Rarity never learned the rules of O&O in Dungeons and Discord. Which is possible, but strange.
  • “I figured I’d come by before my rounds with a bowl of energizing turnip soup.” What Gabby actually is carrying is a jar that appears to be a thermos, though.
  • “Hi, Spike.” Twilight is dragging Rarity’s couch out for some reason, but what are those bindles on it that look suspiciously like trash bags?… Rarity spawns in a new one anyway. She clearly has a “summon couch” spell. Do the magically summoned couches deteriorate and fall apart in a week or something?…
  • “Sorry! I just didn’t want to drop another one and wake the bats.” No explanation whatsoever why isn’t Rarity wearing a hard hat this time. In fact, this time she is wearing a full coordinated outfit not otherwise associated with gem hunting. If this is a date, what is Pinkie doing here?…

Just as much as I like the sound of Rarity’s voice, I hate the faces that accompany it in this episode.

Comments ( 7 )
  • Now, we know that originally, the mail went to Celestia’s fireplace only, but apparently Josh Haber doesn’t, so Rarity assumes she doesn’t know the recipient. Which implies that Spike has a lot more options for destinations. The exact limitations remain unknown, but Gabby seems to receive his messages with no specialized hardware or even a fixed location, here.

Or maybe Celestia turned it off and it defaults to routing to nearest post office. It's not like Twilight sends Celestia letters anymore. :fluttershyouch:

  • Rarity’s telekinesis can tear apart a gem in the air. Is it just me, or is this the first time telekinesis is used in this manner?

in S8's Ep. 17 The End in Friend Rarity did a little trick where she divided a leaf by half each time.

  • “I had no idea how much walking there is at a Power Pony convention!” Rarity likes Power Ponies sufficiently to cosplay.

I was wondering more why she didn't go as the Power Pony she was during the Power Pony episode. But as people noted, the poster is different. Maybe it is like the actual power rangers show and in its 5th iteration and cast. Still Maniac is a good choice :)

  • “Hi, Spike.” Twilight is dragging Rarity’s couch out for some reason, but what are those bindles on it that look suspiciously like trash bags?… Rarity spawns in a new one anyway. She clearly has a “summon couch” spell. Do the magically summoned couches deteriorate and fall apart in a week or something?…

I am surprised your problem is with the couch itself. Not that Twilight is physically pushing it (for comedy I am sure) or the fact that Ponies have sanitation and curbside trash pickups. Do a pair of earth ponies load an old couch into the back of a wagon and stomp on it until its splinters?

Spike and Rarity spend zero time doing anything at the school of friendship, yet Gallus and several other students are still in town. So maybe its summer vacation and Gallus and some others are spending it in Ponyville

I guess this episode was created just to shut down the Sparity shippers, or at least transform Rarity and Spike's relationship into a healthy one.

But are Spike and Gabby now supposed to be "friends" on the level of Lyra and Bon Bon? I mean, its not a normal friend thing for your friends to accompany you on your "rounds" every single day.

Also, why does Gabby even have "rounds" in Ponyville? She's the official mail carrier for Griffonstone, but Grandpa Gruff sends letters daily to check up on Gallus. Ok great, confirms Gruff is actually a softy and leans into the idea that he is the guy raising all of Griffonstone's orphans. (Which to me explains why Celestia treats him like the Griffonstone ambassador, she would probably not mind at all throwing money at an ambassador to a non-existent government if that money was being "embezzled" and funneled into an orphanage instead).

But why does Gabby need to go anywhere in Ponyville besides to Gallus's room every day? Why is she even at the post office? Is Gabby just taking over some of Muffin's extra duties as an excuse to spend time with Spike? That's quite friendly indeed.

Or Gruff, who we already established is a softy, is creating makework for Gabby to keep her busy/paid now that she is an adult. Or he's running some kind of elaborate mail fraud on the residents of Ponyville.

I think Gabby is the official mail carrier to Griffonstone for the same reason everything else is official in Griffonstone, Gruff said so and no one else cares enough to disagree.

Overall ok episode, peak Rarity hamming it up, though I agree I really hate a lot of the new expressions they give these characters ever since the movie.

Spike is able to make gem-based decisions by licking them, which is pretty strange, chemically speaking. I wonder which particular quality of a gem does he determine this way

Chemical composition, I would guess, or things dependent on or correlated with chemical composition -- taste is a form of chemoreception, after all. Given that a mineral's characteristics are often strongly impacted by its chemical makeup and elemental impurities, I can think of worse ways to test a gem -- especially since it might be a very useful way to tell genuine corundum, carbon, beryl or what have you from cleverly colored glass or cut quartz.

Just why exactly would it only be accessible “once a year” and how long is a once?

Given the reference to altitude, I would assume it to be high in a mountain range; given that the only extensive mountain ranges we've seen in Equestria's general vicinity are the Crystal and Yaket Mountains, which would put it also very far north, I think it's a fair guess that snow and ice may block it off for most of the year and only thaw very briefly.

“And this seemed like the perfect opportunity for you to teach me the game.” Which would imply that Rarity never learned the rules of O&O in Dungeons and Discord. Which is possible, but strange.

Not as strange as all that -- to my knowledge, she didn't join in at the end; only Pinkie and Rainbow did.

Twilight is dragging Rarity’s couch out for some reason

Rarity left to couch in Twilight's library when she ran off, Twilight got fed up with waiting for her to come pick up after herself and decided to just drag it out herself and Rarity's welcome to pick it up before the next rainfall.

I think those "LEGO pieces" are actually muffin tins. Spike likes baking.

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But are Spike and Gabby now supposed to be "friends" on the level of Lyra and Bon Bon?

Well, in the scene with them drinking milkshakes together (and Lyra and Bon Bon in the background), Gabby literally gives her cherry to Spike. So... draw your own conclusions.

Spike is able to make gem-based decisions by licking them, which is pretty strange, chemically speaking. I wonder which particular quality of a gem does he determine this way?

Based on how nervous the vendor gets when Spike disapproves - authentitcity.

Just why exactly would it only be accessible “once a year” and how long is a once? We never actually see the place. Spike later says “Well, to get to the Crevasse, you have to climb across a rope bridge because the air’s too thin to fly!” which would be the first ever indication that any altitude limits to flight even exist, but that still wouldn’t explain the “once a year.”

Only time the weather clears up enough to make it accessible?

Reaching the Crystal Mountains requires a train trip and involves dressing for cold weather, which suggests somewhere in the Crystal Empire area for location, but not the Crystal Empire itself.

Official maps do place the Crystal Empire in the Crystal Mountains.

“I gotta get back to Griffonstone, but you have to tell me all about the Crevasse tomorrow!” Yes, Gabby commutes by air. Daily. From across the ocean. Right. The space is leaking out of Equestria, there’s a hole somewhere. It’s deflating like a balloon.

Oh come on, Equestria has been 1 day's travel on hoof in radius for a while now. Remember how the train to the Crystal Empire, which is slow enough that Scootaloo can catch up to it despite significant head start, nonetheless delivers the Ponyville class same-day early enough in the day for the Equestria Games opening ceremony? Or the 3 day round trip to Seaquestria that Mane 6 do in the movie, going all to Kludgetown on hoof?

Something's got Spike's attention more than Rarity. What could it be?

I like Applejack's prosthetic light spell

Twilight casually flies even a short distance and sits human-style.

Is intentional bad acting as hard for an actor to do as intentional bad singing is for a singer? Because Tabitha is nailing it here.

One of those comic books is pony Archie. Are those muffin tins or part of a dalek?

Hey look it's Lyra and Bon-Bon!

The great gem crevasse is accessible once a year? My first thought was why haven't unicorns used magic to mine it anyway, but I guess they don't really need to since gems are just lying around everywhere for the taking, so I suppose it DOES make more sense as a sort of tourist attraction.

The air's too thin to fly? Wouldn't it get too thin to breathe first? Although I suppose weird magical physics could be in place, which would be fine if they don't contradict this later...

Again with the GM rolling all the dice thing. Where did this perception that the GM rolls the dice for players come from? I remember it being commented on in HarmonQuest too when one of the guest stars is actually familiar with D&D for once.

Initially I was worried that this episode would push the Sparity angle, which would make it creepy if Rarity reciprocated. But it's made pretty clear that she just got used to his company in a purely platonic-with-a-bit-of-underpaid-labor-on-the-side sense.

Twilight trying out the fainting couch made me laugh.

Remember, Rarity, don't mine at night!

This was a pretty alright episode! I liked the instrumental piece, too.


I thought the place Rarity mines was different from where Maud lives now, given the exterior shots in Diamon Dogs look nothing like the exterior in Maud's episode.

I noticed that too, I think everypony's just used to referring to Spike that way since he was part of life in Ponyville for years before the multiculturalism movement started.

Perhaps Celestia's fireplace was like training wheels -- even a baby dragon's fire could send to it -- but now that he's growing he has more control and can send it to others?

I figured that Rarity accidentally smashed the gem rather than pulling it apart, but maybe I wasn't watching closely enough. Still could have been crushing it, quite formidable all the same. Do we get many measures of Non-Twilight-Non-Starlight telekinesis limits? Later we see Rarity lift Spike's comicon haul WITH Spike flying under it, suggesting that Rarity's upper limit is slightly below that much.

Come to think of it, sometimes it seems like she lifts her head when lifting something...

I'm willing to believe glowing gems could be the result of unicorn magic or alchemical processes. Ponies clearly know about radioactives but also the danger of them... although I suppose it could be tritium-based?

LEGO, huh? They still look more like parts of a dalek costume to me. Possibly made from muffin tins.

How do you measure the royal-ness of purple, Oliver?

Honestly I thought his notes to Gabby were sent mundanely but of course if you were a living mail-sending device you'd use your power for that.

To be fair, there's lots more to learn about D&D than just the rules. There's also optimization. For example, in third edition you might think splitting your levels between fighter and wizard is a good way to make a fighter-wizard but <pages of discussion excised> Rarity might want to make a character based on fashion actually dungeon-effective.

Come to think of it, on the friendship mission to Griffonstone did they have to cross the ocean? Maybe that episode was written before the map location was chosen and they've since forgotten.

The thermos keeps it hot but you could still pour it into a bowl for serving.

Some of the faces stuck out to me (especially some of the earlier Spike off-model ones) but for the most part I'm getting used to it.

Based on how nervous the vendor gets when Spike disapproves - authentitcity.

This

Something that occurred to me recently: Spike has realized that the real treasure is the friends you make along the way. As such, he can now receive arbitrarily large gift baskets without triggering greed-growth, provided they're all from the same pony.

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Yes, but there's a bit of a difference between "is a reasonable travel time for the distance" and "is a reasonable daily commute"...

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