Twilight Sparkle finishes her list of things to do for the day, only realizing after doing so that she didn’t write a letter to Princess Celestia that week. Twilight immediately fears the worst possible outcome…that being “tardy” will lead her to being hated by Celestia and banished back to Magic Kindergarten. She spends the day going around desperately trying to find a friendship problem to fix, but is unable to find anything. As she grows more panicked, paranoid, and neurotic, she confesses her concern to her friends, but they laugh the whole thing off as her overreacting. Getting desperate, Twilight enchants her ratty old stuffed doll from when she was a filly so that the CMCs will fall in love with it and fight over it, so that she can break up the fight. Unfortunately, the spell goes too far and soon starts enchanting everyone in Ponyville who looks at the doll. As the sun sets, Princess Celestia appears, undoes the spell, and demands to see Twilight in the library. When Twilight leaves she tells the girls her worst fears, leading them to think that is what is going to happen. Twilight confesses to Celestia the reason she overreacted in the library, and the princess reassures her that she knows she’s a good student even if she doesn’t give a letter on time. The girls, now as fearful as Twilight about the worst, burst into the library and say the blame is on them for not being attentive to Twilight earlier and plead for lenience. Princess Celestia ends up agreeing not to punish Twilight if all six girls take part in the “assignment” and write a letter to her about what they learned about friendship…but only when they actually do so. She also gives credit to Spike for writing to her in the first place about Twilight freaking out. The girls write their first “group letter” to Celestia afterward saying about how you should take the worries of your friends seriously and also not to overreact.
It seems as if the lack of humor in the Season Two opener was doubled down for the first regular episode. This episode isn’t quite as delightfully wacky as “Feeling Pinkie Keen”, but it comes close. No one episode probably ever presented so many “memeable” moments. It’s Twilight at her most neurotic and crazed, Rarity at her most drama queen-esque, full of crazy scenes of the characters doing nutty things, and essentially is a great follow up to the momentum of the first episode. Sure, it swings things back into the mood of the first season, but it does so in a big way with lots of craziness and wonderfulness. It continues a trend the premiere started that led to a great chain of Season Two episodes. The biggest change for this episode to the series as a whole is how it broke up the “letter to Celestia” bit. Now all of the girls were free to write the letter. In doing so, Tara Strong/Twilight Sparkle was no longer necessary for every episode, and there would be a number of episodes in this season where Twilight Sparkle never appeared/was silent.
Nevertheless, I have one beef with this episode…and it’s the case of another “muddled moral”. While Twilight’s overreacting and craziness was more than evident, I don’t like the secondary lesson. You see, I have Asperger’s Syndrome, so I know all about being neurotic over nothing. I don’t fault the girls at all for laughing off Twilight’s concern because, in this case, it really was nothing. If the episode indicated for one moment that Twilight’s fears were well-justified, that would have been something else. But it made it clear very early on that Twilight was completely overreacting. A better lesson would have been: “Sometimes, when your friends try to tell you a problem you think is huge is really nothing…you should stop and listen to them.” Yet not only do they enforce the lesson that the girls should have been as worried over Twilight’s imaginary difficulty, but Celestia even chastises them a bit about it; even after she admitted Twilight’s worries were nothing. So…this is another “Trollestia” episode in that sense.
That aside, this is an episode with a lot of fun and wacky humor, and helped keep up the momentum Season Two started with.
This episode is probably Twilight Sparkle at her most “OCD”-esque…and psychotic. They might as well have her washing her hooves with three different bars of soap. 😛
This episode debuted the new opener. Not only is the song slightly different, but Ponyville has changed. There is now a steam engine locomotive running through the front of it (note no ponies are pulling it as they were in Season One), the “miscolored” Big Macintosh is now correctly colored, and Derpy is on the locomotive with the CMCs in the rear caboose. However, the “miscolored” Big Macintosh hasn’t fully gone away. When Twilight and Spike are walking through town at the beginning, he’s behind them.
In an act of pure randomness…after Twilight yells “Tardy!”…Spike pushes away the background that has appeared behind her. That’s crazy enough for Pinkie Pie. It’s not the only time Spike does this sort of thing this episode either.
When Twilight has her fantasy about being sent back to “Magic Kindergarten”, there’s a rather stunning pony way in the back on the right…an alicorn filly. This was purely a mistake by the artists who randomly generated a background pony who accidentally had both a horn and wings. This character has since gotten a apt name by the fans: Princess Erroria.
This is also Rarity at her most “drama queen”-esque. She literally keeps calling every little thing the “Worst. Possible. Thing.” and summoning a couch to throw herself on.
Rainbow Dash’s “nuclear rainbow explosion” on destroying the barn has been used frequently for a destruction meme involving this show.
I’m really shocked they got Fluttershy appearing to snap a bear’s neck past the censors. BTW, that became another popular meme.
Poor Big Macintosh…mind trolled two episodes in a row. 😛 He also still likes the doll even not under the spell. 😀
Rainbow Dash’s eyes begin to “revolve to hearts” on seeing the doll, but Twilight tears her head away from it before they can.
Technically, Princess Celestia “saves the day” in this one too…so…that’s twice. 😛 Nevertheless, she’s a bit of a troll in regards to the moral of the episode. (See Review)
This is a landmark episode in that it officially “did away” with Twilight being the one who always had to learn the lessons, although there were a few episodes in Season One where one of the girls learned the lesson instead. However, Twilight no longer had to be present to write the letter, meaning Twilight Sparkle could officially not appear in episodes now.
3.5 Stars out of 5