But we’ll take a look at that below, along with “The Mysterious Mare Do Well”, “Apple Family Reunion”, and “Rarity Takes Manehattan”.
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“Look Before You Sleep” just screams: Let’s save money. Only Rarity, Applejack, and Twilight have speaking roles. On top of that, 90% of the episode is in Twilight’s treehouse, with consistent backgrounds. It’s really cheap. And I get it. After the epicness that was “Dragonshy”, you probably need to balance your budget. However, you can still do it better than this. While animation and voice acting may be costly, it costs just as much money to write a good story as it does to write a bad one. So there's no excuse for this piss-poor plot. Slumber party with people who don’t get along with each other. Yeah. This is objectively the lowest point of the first season.
“The Mysterious Mare Do Well” got a lot of controversy, and while I wouldn’t call it a good episode by any means, I don’t think it’s as bad as everyone says it is. I like the idea of Rainbow Dash being a superhero, it going to her ego, and then her friends become a humbling superhero to show her up. Some people argue that Ponyville doesn’t NEED a superhero. Did you forget the fact that Ponyville borders with the most dangerous forest in Equestria and is constantly threatened by epic villains? Sorry, that argument holds no water. However, where this episode FAILS is at Sugarcube Corner, where the Main Six (minus Rainbow Dash) talk about all of Mare-Do-Well’s strengths, their own strengths. THEY ARE NOT BEING HUMBLE AT ALL. The worst part is: this is an incredibly easy fix. All you have to do is have them compliment each other’s talents instead of their own.
“Apple Family Reunion” has one good moment, and the rest is crap. The problem with this episode is that the whole plot could have been avoided if ANYBODY had just sat down and talked to AJ about what she was doing. Oh, and that square-dance scene was unbelievably stereotypically southern. Probably offended some people. The one good moment was with the shooting stars at the end, representing AJ’s dead parents. Never really expected MLP to touch on that, but was glad when they did.
And finally, we have “Rarity Takes Manehattan”. Rarity acts generous here, which is completely out-of-character. Yes, I know that she’s is the element of generosity, but she has not once shown that since the second episode of the entire show. Also, Rarity gets everything that she wanted. She gets to win the fashion contest, she gets to see that musical with her friends, she gets to go home on time by delegating the work to Coco Pommel, and she even gets Coco out of a bad relationship. This is a kid’s show, obviously, so you need to have a happy ending, but you don’t need to have ALL of these happy endings. Remember in "Fall Weather Friends" how Twilight got fifth place and was happy with it? Do that. Don't make her win first place just because you can. That's bullshit.