• Member Since 27th Feb, 2013
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Sprocket Doggingsworth

I write horse words.

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Help! My Heart is Full of Pony! - Trauma · 10:23pm January 13th

For years, I have been using Hurricane Fluttershy's use of "wing power" as a metaphor for pitching in. Everypony contributes for the common good.

It's a major theme of the episode, and of the show in general.

Rewatching it now, however, I'm struck by just how nightmarish the entire scenario is. We have, of course, seen Fluttershy wrestle with social anxiety plenty of times before, but always as an outsider looking in.

Hurricane Fluttershy places you inside her head. It is the only episode in the entire series that does this. It doesn't merely show you flashbacks of her childhood. It dramatizes that trauma and abstracts it into something almost Lovercraftian.

Fluttershy has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. She fights an internal battle every day of her life that few ponies see, and nopony truly understands.

Part of what makes this episode so amazing is the way that she overcomes it. The training montage is, of course, adorable. Her devotion to Rainbow Dash is, of course, admirable, (as that's what motivates her to even try in the first place).

But her shining moment in this episode is, once again, internal.

At the very end, after she had already overcome so very many hurdles simply to be there, Fluttershy flies into the tornado to do her part - to make a difference. Once there, she hears that childhood taunt in her head once again - the one that had tripped her up every step of the way so far: "Fluttershy, Fluttershy, Fluttershy can hardly fly."

This time, she screams at the voices in her head, and starts flying like a maniac, driven by the very anger that she'd turned inward for so many years. It's a moment of triumph - of catharsis - a refusal to be defeated.

When the whole tornado is over, and every other pegasus lands, she's still flying in a circle of righteous rage. Rainbow Dash has to catch her with a cloud just to get her to stop!

It's glorious.

Then, just to add a little touch of poetry, the crowd begins cheering in her favor, to the same cadence of the taunt from her childhood, but to a slightly different tune: "Fluttershy, Fluttershy, Fluttershy can really fly!"

It's positively epic. Sometimes the strongest people you'll ever meet are fighting battles that you'll never see.


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Comments ( 4 )

This was a great episode! Fluttershy is a much braver pony and is a deeper character than most give her credit for. She cares and feels more deeply because of her own experiences. Which is why she does her best to help everypony and creature she can. She understands how far hurt can go.

Thank you, as usual, for sharing your thoughts and insights. :)

True enough, but I think people give pegasus themselves too much flak, you know. Okay, so, Fluttersy, and by extension us, see her past as abusive, but really, is she truly being singled out? Yes, she was pushed and was traumatized, but that seems standard for them, like a baby bird getting the boot in a way. Now I'm not saying they aren't being pricks at all, (especially the foals, but kids are abscessed assholes) and yes they do fail to account for much, but flight and dealing with the powers cumulus probably inures one against the perils of emotional turmoil. Hell getting the Pence Special probably gets a "Well, bet that hurt didn't it? Teach you to kicking the thunderheads."

I'd also imagine that series end Flutters would face hoof over being such a ninny. She perhaps does have ptsd, but its more likely a result of her sensitivity then anything.

Looking back though, I kinda wanna see someone do a AMV of this with that episode

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