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Season 1's episode today is "A Dog and Pony Show". At the time I became a brony (March of 2011), this was the only episode that I disliked. I thought that this was the lowest that it could possibly go. Oh how little did I know. All right, so we start of with Rarity digging for gems and Spike helping her because he just wants to eat them and she is okay with this because... ... ... um, I guess none of her other friends could help her at the time? And she can't levitate the gems herself because... ... ...um, moving on. The Diamond Dogs, who are the most annoying Season 1 characters ever, kidnap Rarity, and dig several holes to keep her friends from finding her. And they knew that Rarity's friends would show up because... ... ...um, I dunno. Anyways, they put Rarity into forced labor. She whines about it, which is THE MOST ANNOYING SOUND EVER. Yes, that is the point. It annoys the Diamond Dogs, but it annoys the viewer too, which means that you are losing your audience. Good job. And then after they get annoyed too much, they just let her go. Now, I've never kidnapped a woman before , but I imagine that the number one rule is: If you cannot stand to see a woman cry, DON'T KIDNAP WOMEN. Also, we've seen Winona before this episode, and she is, well, a dog. So... are dogs sentient in this world, or not? (Spike in Equestria Girls doesn't count.)
Season 2 gives us "Putting Your Hoof Down", which started a long unfortunate trend of having a Fluttershy episode in which Fluttershy becomes aggressive, and then regrets it, and then becomes nice again. The animation here is beautiful, but the plot is one that is just going to be repeated over and over and over again, and that's annoying.
Season 4 gives us "For Whom The Sweetie Belle Toils". Apart from debunking my theory about "Sleepless in Ponyville" taking place all in Scootaloo's head, this episode is also bad because it shows that Luna has absolutely no respect for anyone else's privacy, by just giving away Sapphire Shores's dreams to Sweetie Belle. Didn't really like that at all. Also, Luna solving the problems was INCREDIBLY deus-ex-machina'd. Luna shows Sweetie Belle that Rarity did, in fact, care about her on her fifth birthday. How did Luna know that? Unless she went inside of Rarity's dreams and somehow knew that she wasn't just "making up" the dream, there's no way for her to know. She knows because the show needs her to know, not because it makes any sort of sense.