Before I talk about this week’s episode, I think I should write about the latest controversy in the My Little Pony community, because those are always fun. Actually, I wouldn’t call it controversy, but it is an issue, and I can’t help but feel a bit responsible.
You see, two weeks ago, I wrote about the recent characterization of Derpy the Pony. As a clumsy idiot with Down Syndrome. Turns out I might need to take that back.
But first I need to explain what exactly happened after I posted that. It seems the only official manufacturer of pony-shirts: We Love Fine, pulled or renamed all their Derpy shirts to remove any reference to that name, and iTunes pulled The Last Roundup, which featured our favourite lazy-eyed pony, off the site.
Now, I don’t think this is my fault, I’m not that deluded. But since I did write about this, I feel I should write a follow-up. Regardless, the real reason for all this Minitrue action, appears to be some knee jerk PC motherbuckers making a big deal out of Derpy’s portrayal.
I’m a little confused, are they saying the name ‘Derpy’ is offensive? After all, her voice actor’s website censored the name. How so? Apparently its origins trace back to the fuckers behind South Park (I don’t like that show) as an onomatopoeia related to a really stupid action. Derp! Makes sense to me. This was eventually extrapolated to refer to really stupid facial expressions. Like someone whose eyes are focused on two different locations. So far so apt.
Here’s what we know about Derpy: She has a lazy eye, and is a complete klutz. That’s what we know for certain. Anything beyond that is extrapolation and projection. Big words, I know, but try to stay with me.
Two weeks ago I said she was an idiot with Down Syndrome. I take all that back. None of that is accurate. In fact, that was just me extrapolating unnecessarily. As far as we know, Derpy could be a super-genius. Now, as for the part about her having Down Syndrome, it has since been confirmed that Tabitha, the voice actor, based the voice on a little boy in her neighbourhood, and as far as we know, the kid does not have Down Syndrome, or any mental deficiency other than being a kid. So, Derpy’s not retarded, and she might not be stupid, she’s just a klutz. So what’s the problem?
I reacted negatively because I didn’t like how the fans originally interpreted the character, and when such interpretation was made official, it bothered me. There was no other reason. I didn’t find it offensive, not really. It might be a bit stereotypical to make the character with the lazy-eye also a klutz, but it’s as good a characterization as any.
Besides, I kinda like her. If they rename her, or completely retcon her character in some other way, I’ll be pissed. Because I know they aren’t doing it for artistic purposes, but because they were pressured by some moron at some advocacy group that’s built to make trouble.
But there is some good news: apparently, We Love Fine reversed their decision, and there was never much to base it on anyway. Since other ways to rid her from existence were not attempted. Plus, I’m pretty sure no one is actually trying to get rid of Derpy anyway, it might have been a hoax!
I still don’t know what’s going on with iTunes, but fuck iTunes!!! The people running that site are assholes. Hell, this is the same company that once took down the e-book reader, Eucalyptus for the iPhone, because people could download the Kama Sutra! They are not a sane company!
So I don’t think there’s much to worry about.
Anyway, on to this week’s episode. Where I’ve been properly Jossed!
Anyone who’s read My Little Destiny, my MLP/SGU FF, would know that in the opening chapter, Rainbow Dash becomes a bookworm. More specifically, a Science Fiction fan. It will be relevant to the plot I assure you. But this week, my story’s been contradicted…that’s what Jossed means, by the way.
When one of Rainbow Dash’s many stunts goes horribly wrong, she ends up in the hospital with a broken wing. I’m a little disappointed that we didn’t get to see the stunt go wrong, instead we see Rarity, Pinkie and Twilight react to the stunt going wrong, and that’s it. I’m a little confused though as to how the trio knew that the stunt was going wrong a full three seconds before the girl crashed. Watch any crash on YouTube, there’s a good chance you won’t actually think, ‘someone’s gonna die,’ until perhaps, half a second before someone dies.
So, anyway, Rainbow’s going to laid-up for a few days, and since she gets bored easily, Twilight suggests a book she could read.
Of course Rainbow, being the stubborn pain-in-the-ass that she is, is not only against the idea, she outright refuses, and begins to make a blanket insult against anyone who reads. Then all five of her friends set her straight, saying they all like to read a good book now and then, but Rainbow is adamant.
Eventually the boredom gets to her and she cracks open the book. A classic tale of adventure starring Daring-Do, a pegasus that looks suspiciously like Rainbow Dash with a different colour-scheme.
First thing I’d like to mention is this: Rainbow wasn’t lying when she said she doesn’t read. When she starts reading, she reads aloud and very slowly. I’m reminded of all my classmates in Elementary School who pissed me off. I learned how to read when I was three, so the idiots annoyed me when they tried to read to the class.
Second, either Rainbow starts reading in the middle of a chapter, or the book starts in medias res. I’d say it’s a 50/50 shot either way.
Thirdly, Daring-Do reminds me of someone. Specifically a character I created a while back which I’d like to talk about: Daemon Lux.
The story is thus: Twilight’s brother comes to Ponyville in a bit of a rut, and after a while Fluttershy inspires him to take life by the balls (metaphorically) and stop waiting for it to happen. So with Fluttershy’s help, he decides right then and there to make a movie. Rainbow Dash stars as Daemon Lux, a soldier in the Equestrian military, one of the best, recently retired, but is pulled back into service when aliens begin to invade the nation.
I figured they might die their coat and mane to match the characters better. Perhaps it’s typical in these kinds of films, and Rarity does a great job at it.
Other characters I had planned:
|Pinkie Pie as General Starstring||Twilight Sparkle as Dewdrop Frazzle|
I figure they try to tame Pinkie’s mane, but fail miserably every time, so they give up.
Anyway, my point is, Daemon looks a lot like Daring, colour-scheme is quite similar, and obviously they have the same hairstyle, as Rainbow is projecting herself onto the character.
I’m not saying they’re identical, and I’m not saying Hasbro stole from me. I’m just saying it reminds me of that, and I’d be remiss not to mention it. Also, I swear this is an old idea. A few months old in fact.
Moving on, Rainbow quickly learns she’s loves the story, and proclaims, “I’m an egghead!”
She’s not an egghead, nor is she a nerd or a geek. She hasn’t earned it. You gotta work for that shit girl. You just like a good book to pass the time, nothing wrong with that. That just makes you normal.
Rainbow keeps reading and we see Daring go through the temple, avoiding traps and such that, oddly enough, are all in perfect working order, despite being likely centuries old. But this is an old trope of the genre, so I can overlook it.
Something I just noticed, the scenes with Daring appear to have a type of film-grain filter over them. Nice touch, I like it!
So, eventually, Rainbow’s friends visit her, and Rainbow’s goal suddenly becomes: get these fuckers out of my hair so I can keep reading. Hmmm, shunning social interactions so you can get back to your fandom? Okay, now you’re a nerd!
They play a sky-based version of Battleship, which I find interesting. I wonder if they’ll parody other board games in the future.
Back to Daring-Do, I’m not going to question where that lava came from. Oh, wait, I guess I just did. Heh!
I love that we see a new species in the show, Ahuizotl the…Ahuizotl. Perhaps he is a member of a real species in the MLP universe. That would be interesting. Though why the Ahuizotl is named Ahuizotl is beyond me.
So Rainbow keeps reading and just as the story is getting tense, the Doctor arrives to release her. Rainbow is forced to abandon the story, and it freaks her out.
They end up giving her the bum’s rush which is kinda disconcerting. I once volunteered at a hospital, and when someone leaves, they aren’t rushed out like that. Also, there is normally someone with them, to pick them up. Rainbow Dash not only gets rushed out, she’s left alone in front of the hospital. No friends or family to see her. It pisses me off a bit.
Rainbow is still stressing out over the book. She really wants to finish it. She could ask Twilight for a copy, but is too ashamed to ask. She tries to fake an illness to get back in the hospital, and when that doesn’t work, she decides breaking and entering is the only rational response.
Of course, she is successful, she gets the book, but is caught by hospital security and a chase down the street ensues.
All five of Rainbow’s friends notice and end up following her to find out what’s going on. Even Fluttershy and Applejack, who, last I checked, live far on the outskirts of town. So that confuses me.
Rainbow eventually confesses to liking books, and Twilight gives one of my favourite lines of the episode:
I knew the book was good, but I didn’t know it could drive a pony to petty theft!
You know, I don’t understand why she didn’t just explain that to the doctor. I doubt he would have judged her negatively for it, or to be more precise, she wouldn’t have cared if he did, as long as she got the book.
So Rainbow borrows Twilight’s copy and heads off to finish it. The end. Overall, not a bad episode.
Tune in next week when the Cutie Mark Crusaders learn the downsides of love potions, and we get our first real romance plot-line. I’m excited!!!
I love your description of advocacy groups as “built to make trouble”. I like to call them “outrage groups”.