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Play-By-Play: Luna Eclipsed

In these little play-by-plays I watch an episode and as it goes on I make commentary on it. It’s kind of like a Riff Track only there’s no time limit on jokes based on the progression of what you’re watching. And of course be aware that this commentary will contain MAJOR SPOILERS.

All the way back in Season 1 Episode 2 of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, there came a character who was somewhat minor but beloved by fans everywhere. This character was instantly charismatic and loved by everyone. But despite popularity with the fanbase, this character was never seen again for the rest of the season and has yet to make an appearance in Season 2. However, with Season 2 Episode 4, it has finally been confirmed that this character is returning in their own episode.

That character is Steven Magnet.

Steven Magnet was instantly popular for his fabulous style, his dramatic depth as a character, and the fact that he’s a dragon (well, technically a Sea Serpent but let’s not split hairs here). I cannot tell you how glad I am that…

…wait, what?

…Luna?

…You mean Princess Luna? That’s who this episode is about?

Well, that’s kind of disappointing. Whatever, I guess we’ll just watch the episode now. Here’s the embed.

0:00 – Spike, why would you dress up like a dragon? You’re already a dragon. This is as lame as someone dressing up like their dad for Halloween.

0:11 – Are you a wizard?

0:15 – Ponyville has a retirement village now? I always assumed the only geriatric in the town was Granny Smith.

0:20 – Well, if you ever wondered if Twilight is a trivia geek, here’s your answer. She’s probably the reigning Canterlot champion of Trivial Pursuit. But seriously, this is just starting to remind me of the episode of Big Bang Theory where Sheldon dresses up as the Doppler Effect, and it’ll probably have the same punchlines as that too, like with 4 ponies dressed up as The Flash.

0:32 – Nice save.

0:36 – Oh boy, kids. This won’t be annoying at all. I do like how they were able to change the Trick or Treat rhyme though.

0:46 – Speaking of old ponies.

0:57 – Who the hell is this kid? I have no memory of him whatsoever, but they’re just assuming we know his history and backstory (and he does have a backstory apparently)? Up until now the only young male ponies we’ve seen are Snips and Snails (who are the reason why unicorns are extinct in real life btw). Maybe the episode with his backstory was made so that the production order introduced him earlier but this episode had to be aired first since it’s the Halloween episode? Either way, it’s really confusing.

1:11 – You know, the first step is admitting you have a problem, Pinkie.

1:16 – Remember kids, Pinkie Pie says don’t act like a reasonable adult when you grow up.

1:24 – If Spike doesn’t know who you’re dressed as and he lives with you in a library, why would Miss Manchild know?

1:27 – SICK BURN

Also, we can see the obvious foreshadowing that Luna will recognize who Twilight is because she was alive 1000 years ago to remember whoever she was dressed as was and they’ll become instant friends because of it.

2:31 – BAT BALLOONS.

2:32 – Yeah, nobody cares Twilight.

2:37 – It’s interesting to note how adult human women dress up as sluts and go on hayrides with hot guys on Halloween and now so do adult female ponies.

2:48 – Yeah, I’m sure a ton of people would join that. Maybe you should just vote for school reform instead?

3:10 – So Rainbow Dash is dressed as a Dark Wonderbolt? And I thought Twilight’s costume was obscure.

3:29 – OH MY GOD, SHE KILLED SPIKE! RAINBOW DASH IS THE WORST PONY!

3:46 – Oh hey, it’s…uhh…that tennis playing pony from episode 12. What was his name again? And why doesn’t he have a costume?

3:55 – I can see that, but what are you dressed as, Spike?

3:59 – Hah, that was kinda funny. Willie Nelson’s beard isn’t that long though. Expect a wave of “Twilight as a country music singer” memes though.

4:07 – Oh Derpy, you so crazy. Also, I like how there’s applause after Derpy’s scene, like they knew how fans would react.

4:20 – Oh hey, Zecora is in this episode too. And she gets to retell the story of Nightmare Moon. It’ll be interesting to hear the story told as a sonnet.

4:27 – Her spooky voice might work better if she wasn’t dressed like that.

4:32 – Yeah, exactly.

5:15 – I don’t remember Nightmare Moon being a cannibal.

6:05 – And of course Pinkie would actually be dumb enough to believe this.

6:21 – Why are Luna’s guards dressed like that? Is that how they normally dress or is it just for Nightmare Night? And why doesn’t she just have the same kind of guards as Celestia?

6:31 – Pinkie, you helped DEFEAT Nightmare Moon. Stop being such a…whatever animal is associated with being afraid.

6:39 – Okay, that did look pretty sinister.

6:52 – She also darkens the sky when she appears apparently.

7:08 – BOW DOWN, STUPID!

7:19 – And she talks with that voice effect.

7:46 – And she uses lightning bolts as punctuation.

7:48 – Oh Pinkie Pie, you’re so…incredibly stupid and annoying. But I gotta admit, with the way Nightmare moon is talking and acting right now, I’d be scared of her idf she was reading the phone book.

8:34 – “A dangerous all-powerful being appears who everyone in the town is afraid of. I’m gonna go talk to her.” Remember when we all thought Twilight was the smart one?

8:57 – Called it.

9:13 – “I know who you are. You and your friends defeated me in Season 1.” Wouldn’t it be kind of awkward meeting up with a reformed villain you defeated previously? I mean when it happens to Catwoman and Batman they usually just fuck the awkwardness away according to the DCnU.

9:24 – Not clear? Where do I even begin?

10:09 – Oh god. Yes, Twilight, take her to Fluttershy. It’s not like she would shit bricks or anything.

10:12 – “She’s delicate and demure with the sweetest little voice. You’re going to love her.”

10:32 – “Hold on Princess, let me just go beat the shit out of my friend real quick.”

10:56 – Heh, that was pretty funny.

11:38 – I gotta admit, it does kind of look like Luna is holding Fluttershy’s corpse in her arms.

12:06 – Uh oh, I see some actual Nightmare Moon mentality slipping through.

12:30 – “We don’t take kindly to your types around here!” “Now Skeeter, he ain’t hurtin nobody.”

13:40 – Calling someone by their own name? What a revolutionary idea.

13:54 – Well, she could have used her unicorn magic to save Pip, so I guess this whole thing could have been averted that way.

14:25 – Villagers not receptive to my antics. Attack them.

15:23 – Well if there was an entire holiday about making me look like a horrible monster, I’d want to cancel it too.

15:56 – A zombie? That’s so played-out though.

16:06 – What you do best? How is reading going to help us now?

16:09 – Lecture her, lmao, it’s so true.

17:01 – She baits her with candy and then tells her not to scream. Rape jokes really are the low hanging fruit for me when I write these. I mean the writers practically give them to me.

17:38 – God dammit Rainbow Dash there’s a time and a place.

17:44 – Holy shit, she actually laid an egg, I don’t even know…

17:58 – So let me get this straight: Pinkie Pie is trying to ruin the reputation of someone who reformed just because she enjoys being scared? What a little bitch.

18:17 – Well she’s definitely not a genius.

19:03 – Oh yeah, Spike was in this episode. I almost forgot.

19:36 – Whaaaaaaat? So she can still transform into her Nightmare Moon form?

19:54 – Oh, so the minor character who should have been introduced in a much earlier episode saves the day. Hooray?

20:26 – Pip is part of the Lunar Republic.

20:51 – Heh, a guy getting eaten by a shark. Classic costume.

21:28 – Yeah that’s right, get owned Rainbow Dash.

This episode was…well, honestly it was kind of confusing. I don’t really want to call it a disappointment, but, well, it’s definitely not what I expected. The animation is about average for this show, with no particularly outstanding effects or great moments but no major goofs either. It’s also not very clear how Luna’s public appearance changes at the end of the episode. On one hand we have her appearing as Nightmare Moon which implies that ponies are still afraid of her, but then not even a minute later we see her playing their reindeer games (so to speak). Thewhole motive doesn’t make much sense to me, but then again I also don’t like horror films so maybe it’s just me. The character of Pipsqueak is someone who should have been introduced in an earlier episode, because frankly nobody knows who he is right now. His purpose in the episode is significant, but it could have been easily been replaced by the Cutie Mark Crusaders, who along with Rarity are oddly absent from this episode. He also just doesn’t have any personality overall, so really, who the fuck is Pip? And why was Applejack farming corn?

EDIT: Readers have informed me that the Cutie Mark Crusaders are part of Pinkie’s group, and although I didn’t notice it at first, this is correct – Apple Bloom is Mrs. Frankenstein, Sweetie Belle is Dracula, and Scootaloo is The Wolfman –  so they are in the episode in non-speaking roles. But that still raises the question of why Pip was in the episode at all when they could have effectively rewritten his part to be done by the Cutie Mark Crusaders in speaking roles. Who the fuck is this guy?

This is not a bad episode, but it’s definitely the weakest of Season 2 so far. I guess it would be hard to live up to the precedent set by Return of Harmony and Lesson Zero, so I’ll give it a little leeway there. I’m still looking forward to the next few episodes, and I do hope we see Luna again sometime.

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