News Archive

  • 249 weeks
    S9E26 - The Last Problem


    In a distant future, Princess Twilight Sparkle attempts to solve a student's friendship problem.

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

    605 comments · 16,982 views
  • 249 weeks
    S9E24-25 - The Ending of the End


    24 - A villainous alliance unleashes their power on Equestria.
    25 - The Mane Six face off against Equestria's most dangerous foes.

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    1,654 comments · 15,122 views
  • 249 weeks
    S9E23 - The Big Mac Question


    Without telling each other, Big McIntosh and Sugar Belle have devised unorthodox methods to propose marriage.

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    27 comments · 2,779 views
  • 249 weeks
    S9E22 - Growing Up Is Hard To Do


    When the Cutie Mark Crusaders are magically transformed into grownups,they discover that growing up the right way means gaining experience and wisdom that simply can’t be rushed.

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    23 comments · 2,537 views
  • 249 weeks
    S9E21 - Daring Doubt


    When another author releases his own version of the events in AK Yearling’s Daring Do books, Rainbow Dash is furious, while Fluttershy is curious to know the truth.

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    38 comments · 2,153 views
  • 249 weeks
    S9E20 - A Horse Shoe In


    Starlight decides to hire a Vice Headmare in preparation to take over the School of Friendship from Twilight. But she soon realizes that hiring the right pony for the job is going to be a lot harder than she thought.

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

    29 comments · 1,485 views
  • 253 weeks
    S9E19 - Dragon Dropped


    Rarity worries she’s done something to upset Spike when he stops making time for her.

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    333 comments · 8,116 views
  • 253 weeks
    S9E18 - She Talks To Angel


    When Fluttershy and Angel Bunny's relationship hits the skids, Zecora gives them a potion to help them understand each other.

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    57 comments · 3,005 views
  • 256 weeks
    S9E16 - A Trivial Pursuit


    Twilight's hopes of keeping her Trivia Trot winning streak alive are waylaid when she's unexpectedly paired up with Pinkie Pie, who has never been to a trivia night before.

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

    (Was away all weekend sorry!)

    177 comments · 5,427 views
  • 258 weeks
    S9E15 - 2,4,6, GREAAAT


    The School of Friendship is starting a buckball team and Rainbow Dash has to come to terms with the fact that she won't be coaching the team.

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

    357 comments · 6,057 views

Episode Discussion » S9E17 - The Summer Sun Setback · 1:45pm Sep 9th, 2019


Twilight is determined to make Celestia and Luna's last Summer Sun Celebration memorable, but things start going horribly wrong.

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Comments ( 66 )

You know what's really ironic? The series of 'FIM' actually started with this 'Summer Sun Celebration' in some form, when Twilight Sparkle was sent to Ponyville initially to set up arrangements for the event to take place in this town (And how she met her friends). Up to this episode in the series, the whole 'Twilighting' ordeal was seemingly spiraling out of control to the point she got her best friend 'disqualified' just so she can be a 3x Trivia Trot Champion. Yet this episode wanted to prove that Twilight Sparkle can be told of any request or problems knowing that she's not going to be the same pony who freaks out over every little thing and that she's the princess she was meant to be. Whether or not this episode worked or even if fans chose to see the official airing or impatiently decided to see the early release varies with each person.

Right off the bat, this episode gave a familiar 'anything that can go wrong, WILL go wrong' plot line as Twilight's friends try to make sure everything is perfect for Celestia & Luna's final Summer Sun Celebration. But when the 'Legion of Doom' trio starts making a mess of things without their knowledge, using this as a ploy to find some book on how to control Grogar's bell, they were so determined to make sure Twilight wouldn't freak out that they tried to fix the mess themselves since they too were offered to rule Equestria with their best friend. As one can expect, their attempts didn't work and it was only when Twilight Sparkle insisted that they should've told her about this in the first place did it suddenly dawn on the group that they should've been honest from the start (Making Applejack justified that no pony listened to her in the first place, sort of like a shoutout for being treated like a 'background' star nobody listens to). Though the villains successfully managed to break through the defense system and got what they needed (All without the heroes knowing), in the end the event proved very special not just to say 'goodbye' to the Princesses prior to their upcoming retirement but also to 'thank' them for always looking out for their fellow Ponies in the thousands of years in service. True, we can joke about the princesses being 'useless', how they lost many battles, and how they aren't always fleshed out, but having nearly been part of the series since the beginning and all the times we do get to see them have their moments it's the most the protagonists can offer in terms of how much they appreciate having the two being part of their lives.

What this change of character means for Twilight in the long run is difficult to say. Some say this sudden change came far too late, when it all could've been done at a much earlier episode. And while that argument is initially true, we all know that the series is eventually coming to an end or at least we will witness the ending even in regards to that unnecessary controversial moment (I won't go into that). All loose ends are eventually going to be tied and it's becoming quite clear at this point that the Princesses are truly serious about retiring while Twilight will be assuming their place whether we want her to or not. But much like the series, just because the series is ending there's no real need for 'goodbye' for as we know saying 'goodbye' means 'forever'.

After all, there will always be another MLP in some form. Maybe not this year when FIM is over, maybe not in a week, month, or even 'years' after the finale does come. But until then... We should all learn to enjoy what we have while it lasts because much like the Princesses' 'Summer Sun Celebration' all stories eventually end.

Whenever a certain someone wants to point out that Twilight hasn't grown in the past few seasons, I just wanna point to this episode. That basically sums up my feelings on the whole thing. :ajsmug:

But, maybe I can expound just a little. This one was a great foreshadowing ep. Grogar's Legion of Doom is learning to work together to cause trouble for our little ponies, all without Grogar knowing it. Almost makes me wonder if he's taking any notice of this at all. And of course, showcasing how far Twilight has come was such a treat to watch. It's really starting to feel like the end of an era.

Character development isn't something you get to just declare happened offscreen. You have to tell the story, and you have to sell the concept. Vogel chose not to do that, and as such, Twilight's abrupt turnaround here is completely unbelievable.

Egil #4 · Sep 9th, 2019 · · 7 ·

So write a fixfic and fuck off.

Unfortunately, coming up with a concept for such a story is beyond me, and might very well be impossible, given how deep in a rut Twilight's character is. There is no rescuing it.

The Mane 5 (I'm including Spike, but subtracting Applejack's correct decision) trying to keep Twilight in the dark was pretty brilliant. Not because it was going to work out, but listening to them reason it out sounded like the writers were drawing inspiration from Brony threads. "If we tell her all this right now, it might regress her character! It's a fate worse than death!"

The Mane 5 (I'm including Spike, but subtracting Applejack's correct decision) trying to keep Twilight in the dark was pretty brilliant. Not because it was going to work out, but listening to them reason it out sounded like the writers were drawing inspiration from Brony threads. "If we tell her all this right now, it might regress her character! It's a fate worse than death!"

I knew Twilight's tiny notecards and bemused reaction would be weird for some people coming immediately after Twilight flipping her lid in Trivia Trot. But it's not a biggie for me. This episode was commentary on Twilight managing her anxiety from the burden placed on her by Celestia. The week before was her single-mindedness at winning, and showing off her brain-dick to everypony else. “My intellect is larger, and my recall is highest performing.”

Pointless trivia is just going to have to be something that Equestria will have to accept as a facet of their newest Princess. Just like the older models had their weird fixation on the mail and scholastic sports.
The weakpoint of the episode (not just by process of elimination, but is actually pretty weak) is the unicorn firework team. How does Chrysalis get them to go back on a contract with the Equestrian Crown? I can buy that Chrysalis is able to put someone down and ruin their sense of accomplishment with a few observations. But this team isn't acting like people riddled with doubt. Even weirder is how they're all taking the same action like the heads of a hydra. With so much confusion over their life's value, wouldn't it be more natural to be acting is DISharmony? Breaking up? They're all acting strongly opinionated, and all their actions and facial expressions match up to the whatever the leader (her name is Fire Flare) has switched to.

Besides the questions of motivation, it just isn't interesting to watch. The dramatic point is watching them walk down a road. The point is they're suppose to be looking on to greater things. So how about instead of the these unicorns just giving up, and leaving to do seemingly nothing more interesting, go the other direction! "Pointless fireworks are beneath us, Princess! We're changing our routine to Balrog Summoning!",h_1132,q_75,strp/you_shall_not_pass__by_teh_photocopier_d4p1wj4-fullview.jpg?token=eyJ0eXAiOiJKV1QiLCJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiJ9.eyJzdWIiOiJ1cm46YXBwOjdlMGQxODg5ODIyNjQzNzNhNWYwZDQxNWVhMGQyNmUwIiwiaXNzIjoidXJuOmFwcDo3ZTBkMTg4OTgyMjY0MzczYTVmMGQ0MTVlYTBkMjZlMCIsIm9iaiI6W1t7ImhlaWdodCI6Ijw9MTEzMiIsInBhdGgiOiJcL2ZcLzM0YTE4NmM5LWVlMzUtNGQ4NS1hZTAxLWUyZTI5YmVlZTVjZVwvZDRwMXdqNC01ZjQ0YWNhZS01ZjU5LTRlMGItOThhZC1lMzRlOWFkZWM3NDkuanBnIiwid2lkdGgiOiI8PTE2MDAifV1dLCJhdWQiOlsidXJuOnNlcnZpY2U6aW1hZ2Uub3BlcmF0aW9ucyJdfQ.1xV3BHLeRE9VrD27OaEPz5lBrU1gmJR_L5hufyKbe_E,h_757,q_80,strp/she_shall_not_pass___sim_gretina_v_scootarog_by_gwennie_chan_d5xapf7-fullview.jpg?token=eyJ0eXAiOiJKV1QiLCJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiJ9.eyJzdWIiOiJ1cm46YXBwOjdlMGQxODg5ODIyNjQzNzNhNWYwZDQxNWVhMGQyNmUwIiwiaXNzIjoidXJuOmFwcDo3ZTBkMTg4OTgyMjY0MzczYTVmMGQ0MTVlYTBkMjZlMCIsIm9iaiI6W1t7ImhlaWdodCI6Ijw9NzU3IiwicGF0aCI6IlwvZlwvNmMyMDM3NzctNTI0Ny00M2M1LTkzZjktMDU5ZmM4YzI0ZGQ3XC9kNXhhcGY3LWY3ODhkMzA4LTYyOTctNDE1Ni05NzJhLWQxZDU2N2RlZTc5YS5wbmciLCJ3aWR0aCI6Ijw9MTYwMCJ9XV0sImF1ZCI6WyJ1cm46c2VydmljZTppbWFnZS5vcGVyYXRpb25zIl19.7YRrxa7ccijBF-du19FRfx8ydQEzR2JF-m7kAI2UtBk
Then that thread is Twilight and Pinkie going "No, don't do."

But the problem with them goes beyond just their screentime. It... seems like they're suppose to be evidence for Cozy Glow claim that "all those Earth Ponies, Unicorns and Pegasi were so willing to turn on each other." Whaaaaat? The fireworks team's egos and fixation on magical power could definitely be interpreted as a supremacist attitude. But neither of the other races did ANYTHING to falsely elevate themselves. They didn't even do anything MEAN. The Earth Ponies were just dealing with what they thought was food poisoning. The Pegasi team were dealing with bad weather, and the manager having a panic attack. I've been avoiding the leaked finale, but I've seen Hasbro's trailer involving a shot of the Windigos. If this episode was meant to foreshadow racial tension in Equestria, than this is a complete mess of it. Clumsy storytelling is made even worse when trying to tackle as important as ethnic division in society.

Although on the subject of finale predictions, Discord's ending observations were very interesting to me. He knows what's coming. Grogar. The "Father of Monsters." And last season, we saw how magical power was used to fuse disparate animals into crazy chimeras...

This is why I wish the villains were showing up in more episodes so far. Not just because watching them getting it together is fascinating and boding well for the finale, but because they're 2 for 2 on bringing the best episode of the season with them. Granted that wasn't all down to them this time though. Much as I enjoy the Twilighting, seeing her finally get her head together and catch everyone out was even better. And I mean everyone. Let's be honest, how many of us actually expected her to keep it together in the moment? Add in the passing of the torch for the Summer Sun Celebration, AJ finally calling the others out on not listening to her, Discord, and the sense of escalation for the finale, I really don't have any major critiques.

Based on the little I've been unable to avoid spoilers on, this feels like the start of this season's act 3. Time to get down to the important stuff and see how everything wraps up. It's set a high bar to start with at least, 1st for the season so far.

I, too, found this abrupt turnaround from Twilight a bit offsetting. I mean, I get it, the writers are on a time constraint, but they could have done something to show that growth.

Even something as simple as having Twilight momentarily freak out, then correct herself and formulate a plan would have been worked.

This was an amazing episode. Twilight finally overcame her habit of "Twilighting", kept her head, and lead her friends in fixing the problems caused by the villainous trio. And it was really sweet how she created a new holiday to honor Celestia and Luna.

Tirek, Chrysalis and Cozy Glow were on top form, continuing the alliance they made in "Frenemies" to work together in causing a distraction and stealing the book needed for them to figure out how to use Grogar's bell. And they did it all without anypony even knowing they were there.

As for Discord, it was touching how he wanted to help with the preparations, citing the fact that he'd known them for so long. And he even went along with Twilight's instructions for him not to do anything "Discord-y", too.


I guess the whining about Twilight is relevant to this episode, at least.

Honestly, I think Twilight kept a handle on her control freakishness a little too perfectly, especially when everything started going south. I think it would have been more realistic if she screamed into a pillow for maybe half a second before she calmed down, just half a second. I mean, nobody character develops that perfectly. :applejackunsure: This is coming from a self-admitted control freak herself.

Egil #13 · Sep 9th, 2019 · · 4 ·

Okay then just fuck off and watch something else.

I mean, she kinda lost her temper and grabbed the her friends with her TK pretty roughly so she wasn't "perfectly" in control.

Let me get this straight. In this episode, Twilight remains calm while all the preparations for the Summer Sun Celebration, one of the most important events in Equestria, go into complete shambles. Meanwhile in the previous episode she went crazy over a game of trivia.

Perfect consistency.

With the introduction of the 'Flaming Sky Firework Troop'; do you think we may have finally seen Sunset's mom in the leader?
I'm guessing there's no official name? I've seen 'Fire Flare' listed

To be fair, he does have a point about the twilighting being resolved offscreen not being good writing, especially when it came right after “Trivial Pursuit”.

It is. She's overcompensating for what just happened at the game of trivia.

I thought it was hilarious how Cozy broke the chain with a book with a key on the cover.

Was that the intended solution, or was it just a weak chain and a heavy book? The world may never know...

Also, AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH, we've got episode discussions again!...
Let the games begin.

i feel there should have been a episode showing her learning the ropes of ruling and learning the in and out of having to rule then what happened in celestia and Luna holiday ep, maybe have blueblood assigned to her and have hi-jinks en sue but ultimately show her learning to cope

The line, "You and your friends have proven that you are ready to lead Equestria" from Celestia pissed me off. :rainbowlaugh: NO, THEY HAVE NOT! :flutterrage: What on Earth convinced Celestia of that? If the previous episode in this storyline ("Between Dawn and Dusk") proved anything, it's that Twilight is not ready to lead Equestria. And this episode glosses over all of the progress Twilight's made by having it told to us rather than shown, and this character flaw of her freaking out was resolved years ago, long before "Games Ponies Play" because 90% of her episodes are about her learning not to worry so much and to ust relax and take a chill pill!! "Stop worrying about the future and focus on the here and now. Let the future take care of itself." Even so, I would've liked to have seen her overcome this flaw rather than being told. This just makes it look like they're rushing through the season, trying to get through it as fast as possible without bothering to put forth any effort because "hey, it's the last season, why bother trying since the show's ending?" (Then again, they haven't: been trying since season six!) And that shouldn't be the case. Rather than having episodes like "Going to Seed", "Student Council", "That's a Laugh", "A Trivial Pursuit", or "2 4 6 Greaaat" they should've had episodes focusing on Twilight learning what it means to be a leader and all of the responsibilities that come with it instead of just glossing over it with a couple of lines.

Ahem, aside from that stupidity in writing, I rather enjoyed this episode it certainly made me start liking Chrysalis, Cozy, and Tirek as a team and got me eager to see what's coming up next. I especially loved the piece of music that played during the montage near the end of the episode, as well as this shot.

I don't think the Princesses should retire. Yes ruling the lands for thousands of years with Luna missing one millennium of it can a lot of hard work and it can be very tiring, but they shouldn't be calling it quits. Celestia, Luna are suppose to be helping Twilight as well as Cadence like a team, community, family; but they are basically leaving them behind, abandoning them. They seem to be pretty much happy in helping the nation and disappointing them by retiring is the last thing that they should ever do. It won't mean that they will come and visit every now and then to help out a little, but they shouldn't quit entirely. Celestia and Luna are basically goddesses to the ponies even if they don't see themselves as such, goddesses should never retire, and because of the ponies caring for the two and vice-Veca, the two shouldn't say goodbye to the ponies and have Twilight and her friends do all of the hard laborious work for both the sisters and the ponies. Taking vacations every now and again is one thing and I am fine with that, buy retiring, no. I've seen all of the episodes of season 9, there are a lot of changes and closures that happens; changes and closures that shouldn't be. The writers shouldn't of done those things and let the writers of the fanfics decide instead of doing their jobs for them. That could cause possible complains/protests from both fans of the fanfics and fans of the show. The writers seem to be like very good people and I'm normally fine with change, but MLP is one exception that shouldn't have those changes and closures. Final seasons of shows means that everything has to wrap up and conclude the series and that's fine, but by doing it here, you are limiting the fans of the show and authors of fanfics a lot of freedom by ending storylines; MLP is one of the few exceptions where there shouldn't be closures. Again, I've seen all of season 9 and to me, the final season is non-canon as well as season 8 but I'm fine with the eighth season being done in fanfics.. Apologise when I'll keep on complaint about season 9. I'll be reviewing the rest of the episodes on my blogs posts, as well as do a overall season 9 review. I'll also be doing a how I would do season 9 blog if anyone is interested in reading it once it comes out. I also have story ideas on my blogs that authors can adapt from. I'm sorry if I've upsetted anyone by writing and posting this comment. Please don't be mean to me and please don't hate me, these are just my thoughts, opinions. Apologise if keep saying the same things over and over again in future blogs and comments.

All in all, I found this to be an enjoyable episode.

All I can say though is... I'm looking forward to October 12th, possibly have arguments down the line.

Those leaks and hacks were an accursed event.

(Read the below text at your own risk due to spoilers. This is your only warning)

Inevitably, people will come out of the woodworks, having placed way too much stock in the bait-and-switch that happened in Frenemies, wishing that a group of three psychopaths got redeemed (ESPECIALLY Chrysalis, who I'm fairly sure could qualify as a Complete Monster, with Cozy Glow not being far behind).

That is her official name. It was listed in the credits.

In the end, it was a solid character-growing episode which I enjoyed. However, it's hard to ignore the poor plot and writing which causes the story to suffer. Not showing incremental progression as the writers don't following basic literary rules is a headache for anyone with an understanding of such. (I.e. Logical progression of a character instead of trying to ram it all into an episode or two.) Poor writing aside, was nice to finally see some character development.


  • Twilight finally gets over her twilighting and proves that she actually can be a capable leader for Equestria. Granted, I still think it's too soon, but at least the writers aren't having her freak out over every little thing anymore.
  • The Villain Trio scenes were fun, especially watching how they cleverly worked together to get to the book. Their ending lines is definitely foreboding and will probably have significance in the finale.


  • As happy as I am that Twilight's gotten over her twilighting, seeing this development right after an episode that showed her twilighting at it's worst feels more like a hastily-made band-aide. I mean, I can see the writers thinking since "Trivial Pursuit" was going to be the (hopefully) last twilighting episode so they wanted to get it all out there, but then it makes her development off-screen and a little unsatisfactory.

This episode had a decent story and development, and was fun to watch. I give it a 8/10.

Whoah - all three at once? OK...

Why is it even though I really don't like the idea of Twilight and her frinds taking over, the episodes following the main plot are some of this season's best? (Well, perhaps because most of the other ones suck.)

Well, given how lazily that will be resolved, I can't blame them - cheap one way is as bad as cheap the other.

Finally, the discussion board for this one has opened up!

It was fantastic! Twilight kept the Summer Sun Celebration by changing it into the Festival of the Two Sisters. (Like you could get rid of a holiday that easily when it's been around for over a thousand years) And she finally learned to keep calm and not freak out in the face of challenging tasks or unexpected details.

Discord and the rest of the gang cleared things up well after they went wrong.

And we got to see more of the villainous little family that's been forming. Since Frenemies they've had their first family meeting, went on their first mission as a family (and had their first camping trip since they had to spend the night), and have supported and defended each other at least once. Now, we can add that they play family games (see Tirek and Cozy playing chess), and went on their first family road trip! Honestly, if they could end the series living as a family in peace, that would be the sugar on top of the brownie.

Like a few others have stated, while it's nice that Twilight isn't freaking out anymore, it would've been even better if they had shown her progress in getting to this calm mindset, rather than tell us. But, it was still a good episode nonetheless.

Just saying, if I met a pony with a chess piece for a cutie mark, I wouldn't play them and expect to win. One can only imagine what the tally is for Cozy.

They’re foreshadowing G5. Out with the old, in with the new. The last Summer Sun Celebration/The Last BronyCon. O3O

Increased security my flank.

Chrysalis, Tirek, and Cozy Glow doing it Metal Gear Solid style, minus the Cardboard Box of Doom.

And then Cozy Glow gets snuzzled to death by a pack of ferocious puppies. :yay:

I hope G5 has Earth Pony and Pegasi villains with actually perfect reasons for being villains instead of petty ones.

All I can say right now is that it's an okay episode. ^3^

It seems several things are beyond you. Chief among them being the fact that Twilight is nowhere near as bad a character as you claim she is.


I think it would have been more realistic if she screamed into a pillow for maybe half a second before she calmed down, just half a second.

Not even that, just showing a quick sequence of facial expressions, would have sufficed.

I'm fine with character growth off camera, just give the audience something to bridge between the old and the new. Then, the next time, you can have her respond without reaction.

I'm sure they had their reasons for doing it this way, but it does come off as a bit jarring.

Then why couldn't she carry a story where she developed as a character?

Because character development doesn't just happen in a single story. It took Fluttershy many focus episodes before she became assertive. It took Starlight quite a while before she learned to stop trying to solve every problem with magic.

I fail to see how the statement "character development doesn't happen in a single story" can possibly support the argument "it is okay for a writer to declare that characterr development has happened without telling any stories." If anything it should be the reverse. You should be bemoaning the fact that we didn't get a whole dedicated arc for this development.

As for Fluttershy, she presents the ultimate counterexample to your overall philosophy of storytelling. She wallowed in her fears and anxieties over several seasons, remaining entirely flat and featuring in basically the same story multiple times. Then, over the course of one episode (It Ain't Easy Being Breezies), she grew out of that. Don't pretend that that episode was the culmination of a journey; it was a rupture from everything that had come before. But it was also a story that showed her getting from where she was to somewhere else.

Put another way; character development does not consist of showing the character's starting point (whether once or many times) and ending point, with nothing in between. There needs to be a story.

"It Ain't Easy Being Breezies" wasn't the end of Fluttershy's journey to becoming assertive. She still had to keep developing from there. It wasn't until season 6 that she really started showing how far she'd come.

You're just looking for any excuse to keep spreading your hatred of Twilight, even in the case of an episode like this, where she quite literally did no wrong.

It was, however, the beginning. And you still haven't identified any counterpart arc for Twilight, which just leaves the point standing. There was no story for her development here. She was completely flat for eight-and-a-half seasons and then purely as a matter of will, she's a completely different person? It's impossible to believe.

Not as impossible as you think. Twilight actually mentioned the events of "A Trivial Pursuit" as an example of how she used to get all stressed out. It actually does make sense that those recent events would have helped Twilight realize that she needed to get a hold of herself.

You're making excuses. None of that was actually shown.

Great episode. The villainous trio were great, Twilight got her act together, I liked the ending, and good times were had all around.

At the same time, however, it does feel quite weird having this episode come literally right after A Trivial Pursuit, which arguably had one of the, if not the single biggest Twilighting moment of the entire series. It makes me wonder if maybe this season's episodes should've been aired in a slightly different order. Like, say, having Trivial Pursuit and The Point of No Return switch places. Of course, if you're doing that then you're going to have to shove Frenemies up the running order for the sake of continuity, and it all kinda spirals from there... Your thoughts on this?

So are you. Claiming that Twilight flawlessly dealing with every problem in this episode and being calm and level-headed doesn't count just because we didn't see every little thing leading up to the exact moment she got a handle on herself.

We didn't see anything leading up to this moment. Everything we saw before undermined this moment. This moment is unbelievable.

Not even close to everything. Many episodes have shown Twilight being a competent leader. You just choose to ignore them because it contradicts your own opinion of Twilight.

What episodes? Episodes like Horse Play, where she couldn't even put on a stage show without Celestia needing to take over? Or The Beginning of the End, where her performance all but confirmed the adage that it's better to be lucky than good?

Episodes like "Princess Spike" where she organized an entire friendship summit between all the cities in Equestria, putting so much effort into it that she exhausted herself. Or "All Bottled Up" where she lead the Mane Six in working out the escape room puzzle. Or "School Raze", where she figured out how the Mane Six could escape from Tartarus.

The summit was nearly a failure, and as for the other two putative examples, "cleverness" is not a synonym for "leadership."

That was because of Spike's poor decisions, which were no fault of Twilight's. And leaders lead, and guide. That takes a level of cleverness.

Twilight has proven she can get lead her friends to do stuff, which makes it all the more galling when she just doesn't. Also, leading =/= problem-solving.

Even if the princesses retire this is not their final summer sun celecbration because it is a holiday built around them. Without them it would be last one.

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