La la. The Magical Mystery Cure.
Greetings everyone from a Very Special Episode of My Little Pony. The internets have been buzzing for weeks about this episode, wherein TwiSparks gets crowned a princess and becomes a mutant! And there were just as many feels and tears as you would expect, even though there was enough episode material for a 42 minute show. Most of the key plot elements are contained in the songs, so this episode is really more of a musical. Perhaps an operetta? But I digress- let's get to the review!
Something strange is happening in Ponyville – five of the Mane Six have switched cutie marks! Rarity, with her usual OCD, is trying to take care of the weather, but her dedication to symmetry creates a schizophrenic climate. She must still be running things here in the Midwest. Rainbow Dash is trying to contain Fluttershy's animals, while Fluttershy is doing her best to make ponies laugh. Apple Jack is completely failing at making dresses, and Pinkie is back to her straight-haired farming ways. What could have caused this craziness? Did I miss something in the opening while I was making breakfast? The answer is: probably. (Actually Res, unless my YouTube link was also messed up, you did not. In medias res and all that. That’s right! I know things about literary terms! -Doc)
In a flashback we find out that this is all Twilight's fault. ODL sent her a book of spells that belonged to Starswirl the Bearded, Equestria's version of Merlin who I hope we meet in a future episode that involves time travel or ghosts. In the accompanying letter, Celestia mentions that the final spell in the book is Starswirl's great unfinished work. She does not mention what it does, so naturally Twilight's first response is to cast it. Because, you know, COMMON SENSE. It’s like no one in Equestria has ever seen “The Mummy”. The spell switches the colors on the Elements of Harmony, which are safely kept in Twilight's library, and the switched elements reflect the changes in the other ponies' cutie marks. It's not just a change in personality – each pony actually believes that they are meant to do what their cutie mark tells them, because free will is an abomination in the world of ODL. We learn this through a pretty sad song. There were many feels.
TwiSparks and Spike fret over how to return the girls to themselves, but Twi quickly stumbles on the answer because this episode is only 21 minutes: friendship! That thing which is magic. (For clarification, please refer to the series’ title.) She sings a sweet song about how friends support each other in their true passions and destinies- a message all girls (ages 4-8) and boys (ages 18-35) (because let’s be realistic about the audience here) everywhere should take to heart – and fixes everyone's cutie marks. I think that Apple Jack was doing the worst, though her clothing had some sort of hipster “it's supposed to look this bad” je ne sais quoi. (I dunno, Res, Pinkie Pie is really anti-responsibility.) (Unless it involves babysitting adorable baby ponies.)
Having fixed everything through song and friendship, the Mane Six return to the librartree (Love it! –Doc). TwiSparks writes the final lines of Starswirl's spell – which essentially puts a counterspell back in the regular spell, so I guess the original spell is now useless? Magic happens (as it always does in MAD MAGIC -like mad science, but magic) and TwiSparks disappears, leaving behind a burn mark. Also, does anyone know what Starswirl was going for in the first place? Is he a relative of Starburns? Perhaps he died in a tragic meth lab fire, in which case Twi shouldn’t be trying his spells anyway. Nor should Celestia be sending her his meth cookbook. Irresponsibility abounds.
TwiSparks goes to a dimension outside time and space (cue the Doctor Who theme song) where ODL is waiting for her, complete with creepy screens displaying excerpts from Twilight’s life. In case you weren’t clear on the idea yet, Celestia is actually Big Brother. Now that TwiSparks has completed Starswirl's spell, she's proven that she's princess and alicorn material, so I guess at least in this weird fascist monarchy you can earn your place. She is transformed into a mutant – an alicorn – and crowned a princess. (Transforming mutants isn’t really as awesome in real life. Such a shame.) Rule by genetic superiority! Is anyone else having Sailor Moon flashbacks here? (Yes, Doc, I totally was! -Res) And amidst all the ceremony and seriousness, Shining Armor proves that he is the Ron Swanson of this world by not crying, but instead expelling “liquid pride.”
All the feels, guys. What new adventures will TwiSparks embark on now that SHE is the sensei? We, for two, cannot wait to find out.