Twilight Sparkle is done taking a three-day weekend for a shut-in “Book Sortation”. But on emerging from the castle, she sees that the rest of the Mane Six have unexpectedly bonded with Discord over apparently a hilarious series of events that happened over the weekend. Unfortunately, as Twilight wasn’t there, all of the jokes go over her head and she’s unhappy on seeing the rest of the girls had a great time that she missed out on. Eventually, she decides, as the Princess of Friendship, it’s her responsibility to analyze the weekend for the sake of applying to future friendships, and makes Discord and the girls recreate the entire event. When that fails, Twilight next begins to suspect that the girls are only thinking they had a good time because they’ve been mind-trolled by Discord, and goes to Zecora for a cure (which is likely only generic juice). On meeting up with the girls again, she reveals she believes they were all under a spell and tries to get them to drink the potion, which ends up angering the girls that she would accuse them of not knowing if Discord was manipulating them. When Discord shows up and they start laughing about the jokes again, Twilight finally blows up and at last grudgingly admits she’s jealous that they had a great weekend she missed out on. She learns that it’s important to admit when you’re jealous so you can resolve your jealousy…only to find out soon after the reason she wasn’t included in the weekend’s activities was because Discord purposely had the girls leave her out in yet another attempt to troll her. He soon ends up with a dose of his own medicine when the girls start making jokes about the spell and potion, which he wasn’t present for, causing them all to make up.
We saw an example of the right way to do a Discord episode this season already. Now we get to see an example of the wrong way. As usual, this episode was better on the second viewing, but I agree with the general consensus that this is the worst Discord episode yet. Others who were never Discord fans who watched this declared they were sick of him and wanted him not to appear anymore.
On the second viewing, I think it was funnier. The pop culture references seem to hit harder. But the overall pacing and plot is something more akin to a Season One episode that progressed slowly and was all about a friendship problem. In this case, it’s jealousy over other friendships. However, it doesn’t excuse the worst problem that was also present in the previous episode: character degeneration.
While it’s expected that Discord would still troll ponies a bit because “old habits die hard”, it should be much more good-natured or out of an innocent mistake following “Twilight’s Kingdom”. Especially Twilight Sparkle. Twilight literally sacrificed herself for Discord and still called him her friend even after he completely betrayed her and the girls. For him to still be pulling crud like this out of sheer sadistic glee is intolerable. While it might have been acceptable if “Twilight’s Kingdom” hadn’t already happened, it makes what favoritism I did have for Discord evaporate. What more, it also distracts from the main part of the episode, which was supposed to be Twilight learning a lesson about admitting when she was jealous.
What more, it’s not all that great for Twilight either. One of her lowest points is when she actually makes the others angry by suggesting the only reason they had fun without her was because they were mind-trolled. While it fits with her character better than it did with Discord, it’s still not good. What would have made more sense is if Twilight learned a lesson in being shut-in and doing reclusive activities by herself instead of getting out there and interacting with others, especially since Twilight’s three-day activity was something she had done before. That would actually be a more pertinent lesson for the young audience. Instead we get a…”lesser” lesson. Anything that could have been good about it is offset by Discord’s rottenness.
It’s not quite as bad as I remember it, but between Discord’s trolling and the averageness of the plot, it doesn’t really have anything to write home about.
The title of this episode comes from a movie starring Bill Murray and Richard Dreyfus: “What About Bob?” The plot involves an egotistical psychologist relentlessly pestered by an attached patient who everyone thinks is wonderful while he annoys him to tears. There’s actually a reference to the film in which Discord walks in dressed like Bob. In the movie, Bob traveled by putting his fish Gill in a jar of water and wearing him around his neck. Discord has a tiny Smooze in his.
When Discord streaks through the sky, the trail he leaves behind him is plaid. This is a nod to Mel Brooks’ “Spaceballs”. When Spaceball One hits “Ludicrous Speed”, the area around it “goes to plaid”.
When Discord decides to “paint Twilight a picture”, he parodies Bob Ross.
When Pinkie Pie screams: “Time travel?!”, she’s dressed like Marty McFly from “Back to the Future”.
The second time Starlight Glimmer spied on Twilight this season appears in this episode. Right after her discourse on how time travel is dangerous (hint hint), she’s visible in the bush on the right watching them through binoculars.
We never really do find out what happened that weekend in its entirety. X_X
Zecora’s only appearance this season other than in the finale. It’s revealed she always keeps a cauldron brewing just to look cool.
“What kind of fertilizer have you had your nose in, Twilight?” That might be the closest the show has come to profane ever.
Discord complained at the end of Season Four that he didn’t have a throne, but it seems he can make one whenever he feels the need. 😛
2.5 Stars out of 5