At last! Here we see that this show has the treachery and backstabbing political machinations that make Game of Thrones look like My Little Pony.
As this blog has been doggedly documenting (despite the agents trying to stop me, THE TRUTH WILL NOT BE HIDDEN), Fluttershy has plans to become the supreme rule of Equestria (then… THE WORLD! (of course)). The real question has been, how much do her only challengers know? Thus far, FS’s biggest advantage has been her secrecy.
Well this episode opens with Celestia confirming that yes, she does know Fluttershy has aims on the throne. However, for the god-princess to so openly challenge what – to others – seems to only be a mere pegasus would be foolish. She would drive the commoners away from her, ensuring that they rally under FS’s banner. Notice then that Celestia performs a masterful move in this proverbial chess match: she brings Discord – the only real challenge to Fluttershy’s schemes – to the rising power herself. It is a brilliant ‘check’. If FS were to turn down the “challenge” presented her, it would weaken her growing honor and respect, as well as confirm for Celestia that FS really is a threat and that the latter knows that the former knows about the latter’s true plans. However, if FS accepts, she will then be in danger. No matter the outcome, either Discord will be eliminated or Fluttershy will, Celestia will have one less challenger to her throne.
Side Note: Also notice how we have confirmation of Pinky Pie as Discord’s chief disciple. While the others complain about his antics, she provides a “complaint” that sounds just like a fanatic trying to hide his/her fanaticism (even though everyone knows the truth, I mean just look at PP’s power set). After the events of this episode, I wonder if we’ll yet see the conflict between PP and FS come to a head. I doubt there will be many survivors.
So, Discord is loose. If I can step outside my normal reporter function for a moment, I must congratulate the writers. Obviously we all have our doubts as to whether Discord could be any threat to the mighty Fluttershy, so we see her employ her “nuke” (the STARE) right off the bat. Only… it doesn’t work! (dramatic music) It’s a nice narrative touch which lets us know that Discord really is a threat to FS and a real challenger to her goals.
Anyway, we resume with a battle of wits between these two dark lords to be of Equestria, and even a bit of comeuppance to Vizer-to-be, Angel (who had it coming). Eventually we get a dinner party, a grand speed chess match between these two brilliant tacticians. Like the best, while FS might have lost her primary goal at the dinner, she did gain a secondary goal in confirmation that Pinkie Pie is, in fact, a servant of Discord (notice how her actions in the dinner are those you would expect of a disciple basking in the presence of their lord).
Back and forth the two minds go at it, Discord always trying to bait Fluttershy into a trap while FS plays the game very conservatively (she hasn’t come this far to lose now). Until… THE DEMON IS DEFEATED!
…or IS he? (dramatic music)
Note carefully how everything plays out in the end and watch the game closely. We are told at the beginning that Discord is aware while he is a statue so he knew that Celestia had designs on “taming” him. Then in the end, we see him “convert” when he realizes how he didn’t have any friends. Except we know this to not be true! Pinkie Pie is his disciple, and even if she wasn’t, we know she would be a friend to all or can be easily “bribed” into friendship with a little chocolate rain. Discord didn’t “reform” it was a FEINT! Doesn’t his reform seem a little quick in this episode? Of course! See, in his previous appearance it was established that Discord is aware of the 4th wall (which is also how Pinkie Pie has some power over it), meaning that when he “realizes” his friendless status and “looks back” he’s actually checking the show’s running time. Seeing that it is about to run out, he puts on a show at “reforming”. Why? TO GET CLOSE TO THE COURT OF CELESTIA! Meanwhile Fluttershy will let down her guard thinking things are “safe”, allowing PP to keep an eye on her while Discord maneuvers into position in the throne room. Fluttershy thinks she put him in checkmate but really he just promoted a pawn deep behind enemy lines.
Whew, this episode was brilliant. Absolutely brilliant and I commend the writers for the taut political thriller they have painted which keep us coming back week after week. HBO’s got nothing on this.w