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Today, Season 1 gives us "The Cutie Mark Chronicles", aka "the only good CMC episode". But, is it really that good? Honestly, in hindsight, no. It gives us our first look at the backstories of each of the Main Six, and it really does show how they became the characters that they are today. The problem is, much like "Hearth's Warming Eve", this gets somewhat-contradicted later. It isn't quite as noticeable as HWE, but the fact is that we've seen the backstories of these characters so many times over the years. Twilight in particular, with magic kindergarten, Cadence, her brother, and so on. Rainbow Dash has a history with trying to get the Equestria Games to Cloudsdale. Fluttershy had her past from "Hurricane Fluttershy", and so on. There's no contradictions per se, but it does feel weird that they do have so much backstory. Like, seriously, how many different things can you do as a child? I get that your childhood isn't uniform throughout the whole thing, but it seems like they go all over the place with this show. (Though, of course, we have no idea how old any of the characters are.) So, much like "Hearth's Warming Eve", this episode is good on its own, but bad when you look at it with the rest of the series as a whole.
Season 2 gives us "Ponyville Confidential", which is my least favorite episode of Season 2. Why? Because much like "A Friend In Deed", I was on the "bad guy" side here. Yes, gossiping is bad. Yes, you really shouldn't do it. But, face it, whether you want to or not, you're going to inevitably end up either doing it yourself, or having someone else gossip about you. I think it would have been much better if the townspeople (townsponies, whatever) learned to just deal with it rather than forcing the CMC to abandon their gossip column. Also, the CMC are forgiven way too easily. Also, I feel that Diamond Tiara wasn't really doing anything wrong. Yeah, she runs a newspaper in an evil way. Um, have you seen the press these days? We care more about what celebrities are wearing than we care about scientific breakthroughs. She was just doing her job! And yet, by the end of it, she was laughed at by everyone (including Cheerilee - WTF?) after getting herself demoted. Sorry, but I totally support Diamond Tiara here.
And Season 4 gives us "Inspiration Manifestation". Allow me to say: I love this episode. I like the idea of a creativity spell that Rarity just gets, well, addicted to. Like a drug. Yeah. Pretty epic. I also like the moral, the designs of the places (as well as the redesigns by Rarity), and so much more. Everyone just remembers the puppet pony guy, but that's a shame, because there is so much more in this episode that is worth looking at.
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(Edit: Oops. Forgot to run this entry through my word counter. Well, luckily, I only got 485 words this time! Yay! I'm actually getting good at sticking to < 500 words!)