Anon 05/20/2019 (Mon) 06:08:25 No.4124 del
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This episode was off the charts.

Alright. I had standard expectations coming into this. I thought I'd like the dynamic but I was a little cautious over the main plot just because how much stuff was dependent on the set up. But wow... All the villains were utilized properly. The dynamic was indeed good and I enjoyed them all bickering and trying to make it up. I had a confirmation of the prediction I'd like Cozy Glow this season, but what I didn't expect was how well of all things Queen Chrysalis was used in this episode. Her powers, her actions, personality. I can't believe that Queen Chrysalis of all anyone would be the character I was most impressed with in this. I mean it she was written perfectly in a way that caught me off guard. Tirek I'd say was the weakest performance in that he was more whinny and had a less sharply defined traits than the other 2 but that is only a minor note; they still used him well enough. Though, what brings this episode it and brings it out for me is what they did at the end. The fact that the evil trio has already taken action an hid the bell from Grogar caught me off guard completely. This now a build up and one that opens a bit of new possibilities for the endgame. This fact alone is what pushes me to give the rating of this special at...

Maybe I should give it a 10/10 but I'll to give it a couple of rewatches first and see how I feel at the end of the season.

Other notes: IDK there is so much to go over.
1): Grogar mentions millennia that he has been trying to get his bell at Mt Everhoof. That's pretty long time.
2): Mt Everhoof, I like the location. I originally thought that they may just go a route of it just being fearsome weather, but when they had the darker creatures and the shield I could buy Grogar actually not being able to get to it for so long. Better than I could buy a lot of the other obstacles/nurfs for the more powerful characters.
3): Them hiding the bell so close is something that is stupid but it served a thematic use and a visual story hint to younger viewers, so it passes in my book. Only when such things conflict with what we have seen established in universe before do I take issue. (Like Celestia and Luna is stupid by the standards of the show's own universe and their characters with what they did with wanting to transfer power so quickly).
4): Speaking of younger viewers. This show certainly has gone past its roots. I was surprised when Cozy Glow happily bragged of backstabbing so bluntly and Crissy saying that Tirek had it handed to his hindquarters. This would never been said in season 2. The latter line being an actual substitute just one word handed in the ass it's something I'd say that's almost too close.
5): This makes the endgame and rest of the season much more interesting and the prospect of a three way fight for a part of the final I find really cool. New possible direction: Crissy, Cozy and Tirek may defeat everypony while they are evil only to realize the virtue of friendship at the end. It would fulfill them having never defeated Equestria on their own while also proving friendship's power to them.