Friendships can break down on occasion. It happens. When I was younger, I had arguments with my friends all the time. Then I grew up, and I had no friends, so it wasn’t really an issue anymore.
Fighting with friends doesn’t mean losing friends. But it’s easy to see why that would be the case. Tempers flare, you say things that aren’t so nice. It all culminates in declaring you never want to see the other again, or unpleasant declarations about someone’s mother, or something getting broken, possibly a nose. And then you think it’s over.
But true friendship doesn’t end. At least, not that easily. After all, friendship is magic!
Which is why it should surprise no one that this theme played out perfectly on the show that’s all about friendship, and love, and tolerance: Littlest Pet Shop!
Oh! Of course!
Yeah, this show’s always been about friendship, hasn’t it? But mostly, it’s been about friendships of convenience. They spend most of every day in this one room, together. Might as well become friends with one another!
But they’re all really close friends, aren’t they!? I don’t know. I mean, we never see them act like they’re very close with one another.
The première established that Zoe and Pepper were best friends, but I don’t remember seeing these two having much on-screen interaction. All I can think of is that one episode where they argued over the best way to plan a party. But they didn’t really act like best friends, did they?
What about Zoe and Penny? I remember one episode featured Penny as being the one Zoe trusts enough to reveal her crush on this dog named Digby to. She also trusted her enough to act as the Christian to Zoe’s Cyrano. But I can’t remember this actually going anywhere interesting in the long run.
Minka and Penny have had their moments… I think. There was the museum episode and… um…
What about Russell? Does he have any friends? For some reason, I think of Zoe or Minka, but I’m not sure why.
I guess it’s because the whole cast is so well-rounded, that their interpersonal relationships are also rounded, like someone took a wood planer to them.
On My Little Pony, in contrast, one can easily pick out which characters have closer bonds to other characters. There’s Fluttershy and Rainbow, Fluttershy and Rarity, Rainbow and Applejack, Rainbow and Pinkie, and finally Twilight and… um… Spike?
But Littlest Pet Shop doesn’t really have much of that. I’m sure one can pick out individual episodes which demonstrate the specific bond between two characters, but my point is that one could probably find them for every pairing of characters. None of them stand out.
One exception: Vinnie and Sunil. These two have been hanging out together quite frequently this season. Not so much last season, but I’m guessing this is something the writers only recently came up with.
They’re best friends! And because they’re so close, Vinnie once tore the shop apart because he was told he wouldn’t be seeing Sunil that day.
Are we sure they’re just friends, and not ‘special’ friends?
Sunil’s gone!? NOOOO! Now how am I gonna get off!?
So, that weirdness aside, Vinnie’s previous reaction is exactly why the others are afraid to tell him that Sunil is sick.
Oh, yeah, Sunil is sick this day. And Blythe is watching over him, at his home. His owners hired her as a pet sitter. Must be nice having money.
And as Blythe is taking care of the young mongoose, Sunil, àpropos of nothing, starts talking about Vinnie, with venom dripping off his words; the same way he’d talk about a snake, the racist prick. Does he just hate all reptiles!?
But how does Vinnie react to the news that Sunil is sick? With apathy.
So, both Russell and Blythe (separately) determine that these two had a fight, and the majority of the episode is dominated by their efforts to discover the origins of their conflict. Which both of them are tight-lipped about. Which makes me think they both have something to hide, because they both know they’re both assholes.
So, Russell decides to don a deerstalker, and start talking with ye olde English accent. Because we don’t have enough Sherlock Holmes adaptations these days. And at Pepper and Zoe’s suggestion, he starts to go by the name ‘Cyril McFlip,’ as opposed to ‘Russell.’
We get a decent musical number out of this, where everyone imagines themselves in Victorian London, just to drive the point home.
But it makes me wonder, if Russell is Holmes, who is Watson?
And as for Blythe? Well, she just tries a few psychological tricks, convincing Sunil he might have to remain in quarantine, since he’s so sick. By the way, he was not sick, he was faking it.
Eventually, Vinnie and Sunil each tell their sides of the story, which ends up seeming like just another day at the pet shop. With Sunil preparing a new magic trick, and Vinnie being a needy irritating jackass.
So, yeah, a normal day. Then Vinnie’s tap shoes go missing, and Sunil’s wand gets broken in Vinnie’s hand, and to bring a long story short, they hate each other now. But after the idea is placed in each of their heads that they may never see their friend again, they realize how much that would suck, and decide they want to patch things up.
It’s then revealed that Sunil’s wand was a trick wand that was designed to look broken, and immediately mend itself. So, Sunil apologizes for tricking his best friend. But he doesn’t explain why he let Vinnie believe he broke the wand. It seems to be the episode’s biggest mystery. Was Vinnie just being too much of an irritating jackass? Then why would you want to mend fences with this moron!?
I have no idea, and as for Vinnie’s tap shoes… well, they were apparently stolen by a Deus Ex Minka.
You’d think she would’ve brought that up sooner.
So, overall this episode was really good. Just a nice short story about a friendship in tatters.
If I could make one complaint, it was the character of Blythe. She just came off as bland this week and I think it was because, even though she probably knew Sunil was faking it, she didn’t call him out. Instead, he just took advantage of her, which is certainly not on, and I don’t think it would’ve been something Blythe would stand for. But she does, for some baffling reason.
It’s also not understood exactly why Vinnie and Sunil are so secretive about their conflict. You’d think they’d be anxious to get everything off their chests, and get everyone else on their side. But they don’t, for some baffling reason. I guess it was because they were both partially ashamed. They both were afraid that they’d come off as the assholes, instead of the righteous.
Which makes sense, because they do both come off as assholes. Vinnie comes off as overly needy, since I don’t see why Sunil would ask Vinnie to dance for him. And Sunil comes off as a jackass, for not telling his friend that it was a trick wand.
So, in conclusion, everyone sucks but Russell. Goodnight, everyone!