Saturday, 23 November 2013

Episode Review: Princess Twilight Sparkle

It's finally here.
Season 4 is upon us. It kicks off nice and simple-Twilight is learning how to fly. I like this being in the cold open, because devoting a whole episode to this might be awkward. After the theme song rolls, the episode sets a course for slowly building into possibly the most immense episode of the series yet.

"Princess Twilight Sparkle" is an episode with no shortage of ideas. Right when you think you understand it, it hits you with a brand new idea that's even better than the last one. Be it lore, friendship, or whatever, the episode has a scale like no other so far. A lot of it isn't fully explained, and that's the way I like it. It's a sign that the episode has grown larger than its run-time can carry, which is a sure sign of greatness. And oh boy, is it great.

As a way to kick off the fourth season, it could not have been better. Well, maybe it could have, were it not for the S3 finale, but we'll get to that. The show seems to be shifting to a greater narrative, one that will perhaps take a couple episodes to get used to. That said, the new style is fantastic, and is mostly like the old style with an epic scale and a season-wide narrative. Sure, I could go over how the animation was great, the background music was fantastic, and the animation was as good as always, but the thing that really caught my attention for the episode was the scale of it all. Bronies on Twitter are calling it "epic", and I think that label actually fits. Epic is the word I'd use to describe the episode. In fact, I'm excited for the season.

But it's not absolutely perfect. The episode is called "Princess Twilight", and the issues I had with Twilight's new status in season 3 are not at all fixed here. Season 3's finale had a fixation on Twilight's "destiny". It seemed the only reason that she became a princess was because of said destiny. And in this episode, it's pretty clear that this is the direction the writers think the series should go. I do not appreciate this very much. This puts Twilight on a pedestal as being "superior" to the other ponies, something that I strongly do not agree with. Most of that is an issue with the previous episode, but this episode makes absolutely no effort to justify Twilight's new status aside from "destiny", something that they quite clearly want to go with. I am excited to see what they do with it, but I am also disappointed that they're going this route.

It's not a bad episode. Quite the contrary, in fact. It's an amazing episode that could be one of my favourites and is only held back by the whole "destiny" angle. The scope of it is unmatched in the series, and it shows us several things that were merely hinted at before. It's also an episode of a lot of changes, so the upcoming season promises to be interesting. Shame that we have to wait a whole week for it, though.

Second opinion:

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