Once again, it’s time for another episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, and since I’ve reviewed every episode thus far, I figure I’m required by law to review this one.
It’s a crucial time for the Apple Family, as they begin the Zap Apple harvest. Zap Apple trees are magic, they grow very quickly, and must be harvested even faster. So everyone needs to be well prepared. The timetable is tight, and there is no margin for error.
Which begs the question: How could a tree like this evolve? Normally apple trees reproduce by having delicious fruit available, containing seeds, that an animal would eat, then shit out the seeds where a new tree would grow…ideally. But apparently Zap Apples disappear so soon and have such a short shelf life, that it’s likely they don’t reproduce that way. Oh, well. It appears the original wild tree was one of a kind anyway, so maybe it doesn’t reproduce. It was an abnormal mutation.
But this is just the B-Plot, though it is the driving force of the episode. This week is really all about Apple Bloom and her desire to hide her grandmother from her class.
You see, it appears that every week or so, a member of Apple Bloom’s class invites a relative to give a presentation, and Apple Bloom’s time is coming up. Unfortunately, Applejack and Big Mac are busy with the Zap Apple harvest, leaving Granny Smith as the only relative available.
However, earlier in the week, Diamond Tiara, who is a bitch, arrives on the farm to witness Granny Smith and Apple Bloom preparing to make Zap Apple Jam (shouldn’t it be called Zap Apple Sauce?) by dressing in bunny suits and hopping over cans of water while singing. Holy shit.
Of course the bitch being a bitch, she decides to bitch like a bitch does and points out how weird Granny Smith is acting. Suddenly, Apple Bloom is embarrassed of her grandmother, and I don’t blame her. Of course her technique to alleviate this embarrassment is to try to stop Granny from acting like a weird old coot, instead of my technique: pretend I don’t know this person. What? No, I don’t have a grandmother, or a mother, or any family. It works 90% of the time, and I expect my kids and grandkids to do the same thing if I’m acting like an idiot. If they don’t, I would be sorely disappointed.
You know, it’s funny, once again, Tiara seems to be the one leading the ridicule, and once again, glass houses DT! After all, if anyone should shut the fuck up when it comes to embarrassing (grand)parents, it’s her. You see, her father and grandfather are named Filthy and Stinkin’, respectively. Yes, the Rich family have a tradition of giving the male children names traditionally appropriate for hobos. I assume Tiara has a brother named Scroungin’, or Highway Underpass, or something. Now one’s name is a very superficial way of judging them, but this filly is nothing if not superficial, so she should shut the fuck up.
You know, I should talk for a second about the Zap Apple harvest. Granny Smith mentions signs in preparation for the event. First, the howling of the Timberwolves, which are wolves made of wood. Yes, this show is weird. Second, electrical storm hits the trees; and the third is a flock of crows flying in a formation shaped like an apple; and I keep thinking they appear to be signs of the apocalypse, not signs of a rare apple harvest. Then there’s the meteor shower and an electric rainbow, but those aren’t as interesting.
During this entire event the Cutie Mark Crusaders look for ways to prevent Granny Smith from giving her talk. They try various techniques, but nothing really of special note. Just your standard scheming. Though it is hilarious how they’re foiled every time. Even the good ideas, like: we should pick the Zap Apples early so Applejack can speak instead. It’s foiled because the unripe Zap Apples refuse to leave the tree and electrocute those who try to kick them down. Poor Sweetie Belle. I do like how she’s one of the more clever ones in the group. Some fans seem to think Sweetie Belle’s the dumb one. I’m glad this episode proved that’s not the case.
One thing I noticed, and I’m not sure of its significance, is that the appearance of Scootaloo’s wings changed. I don’t remember ever seeing her wings folded like they are in this episode. On that note: Did Scoots do a callback to the season premiere!? I’m pretty sure she did. In the cold open for the season two premiere she asks Sweetie Belle: “What are you? A dictionary?” In this episode she says the same thing to Apple Bloom. This bugs me for two reasons; number one, it would be more apt to call her a thesaurus given the context; and number two, it wasn’t even that funny the first time. I’m pretty sure they even used the same recording. I find it a bit lazy and unnecessary. Though perhaps I’m just nitpicking. But I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t nitpick.
Anyway, back on track. In the end, Granny Smith ends up speaking to Apple Blooms class anyway, and this is the highlight of the episode. For she talks about the founding of Ponyville, and the history of Zap Apples. Last episode was the founding of Equestria, this episode, the founding of Ponyville. You see, when she was a little filly, her family had just settled into a new home, where food was scarce, so the enterprising Smith (I presume she wasn’t actually called Granny when she was so young) decides to go scrounging for food in the nearby Everfree Forest, where she finds the aforementioned wild Zap Apple tree.
She brought the fruit back home, and planted the seeds with her father, where they grew to full trees almost instantly. Over time she learned the patterns of the Zap Apple life cycle; and through experimentation, found the best way to make Zap Apple Jam. A finicky practice, because apparently you have to both be friends with bees, and talk down glass jars like you’re a drill sergeant. This all basically explains her weird behaviour throughout the episode. She wasn’t eccentric, she was literally just following the recipe. Of course she acknowledges that all these things are weird, and basically hangs a lantern on it. “Yeah I know it’s weird that I have to talk to the glass jars to make good Jam, but fuck you, it’s magic, I ain’t gotta explain shit!” (I’m paraphrasing.) Of course, the greatest thing: these are apparently the best damn apples in all of Equestria. They are so good, ponies from all over the nation came to get a taste, many of which settled in the area.
That’s right, Granny Smith is literally, the founder of Ponyville. Why isn’t there a statue of her in the town square!? I guess it’s uncouth to do it while they’re alive, but there had better be plans for that once she’s dead! It’s funny, she should be the town’s most respected citizen, she should be in politics, she…she shouldn’t have to pay for her own damn hip replacements! It’s should be comped!!! Yet…she get’s none of that. In fact Filthy Rich ends up standing by, saying nothing, as his daughter laughs at her. It pisses me off. Of course in the end Tiara gets her comeuppance, but that’s not the point. It shouldn’t have happened to begin with. She should be the town’s most respected citizen, not a laughing-stock!