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"No, because Trixie is supposed to be reformed and the preview of her we saw is wayy out of character!"
— One of our own

Hello, gang. It is I, your local wood gecko and fellow brony. I write today about our good community. I have been among you for quite some time, and a good number of you are doubtlessly aware of how I handle my arguments. I put fire into my words. However, it is a rare day when the community itself manages to anger me genuinely and profoundly.

Today is one of those rare days. It was announced earlier that Trixie will return in a Season Six episode called No Second Prances, wherein Twilight Sparkle will try to keep her away from Starlight Glimmer. Aside from the setting, that is all that is known about this episode, and yet the reaction thus far to this episode has been grossly vitriolic. Criticism is a good thing. I encourage it all the time. However, your criticism should have some logic behind it. Everything I have heard against this episode thus far has been disconcertingly vacuous.

Here I intend to address that baloney.

"Way out of character"

Rainbow imitating Twilight "Always carry plenty of bits" S5E8

The phrase is a popular buzzword: "out of character." Everyone says it nowadays. Characters are called out-of-character in their every appearance, and sometimes it is a valid complaint. Characters should react to situations in ways that add up in accordance with their prior behavior. When characters do not react appropriately, it is a sign of sloppy writing.

It is not a valid complaint in this case.

With regard to Twilight Sparkle, here is what we know: 1) Twilight will try to stop Starlight from befriending Trixie and 2) Twilight will be in her castle when Starlight invites Trixie inside. What we do not know includes the following:

  • How Twilight will try to stop this from happening
  • Why Twilight will try to stop this from happening
  • How Twilight and Trixie will interact between themselves
  • How Starlight will interact with Trixie
  • How Starlight will interact with Twilight after meeting Trixie

Got it? It could start with something as simple as Trixie being rude at the dinner table. It could be a matter of Twilight trying to find someone a little nicer for so fresh a student as Starlight. It could be anything at this point. The preview revealed today does not show that Twilight is startled at first by the news, but nothing else is conveyed. It is absolute balderdash to brand Twilight out-of-character when she displays none of her character in the synopsis or in the preview following the reveal of Trixie.

Twilight Sparkle is the so-called Princess of Friendship, yes, but she is not a caricature. She can be mistaken at times. This is the exact same problem so many folks have with the Elements of Harmony. When Rarity thinks of herself, fans scream she is not generous. When Rainbow Dash says some harsh words, fans challenge her loyalty. Now that Twilight Sparkle finally stands for more than the super-abstract ideal of magic, there are yet some fans who see every vague act of unfriendliness as a cataclysmic failure on the writer's part, which is typically not the case at all. These fans ought to stop. Until the episode airs, until we know more about what is happening, the assumption that Twilight's behavior in this episode will be a crime against friendship is a lousy conjecture which does no good credit to the series or to us.

With regard to the Great and Powerful Trixie...

The Most Magnificent Humble Pony You've Ever Seen

Repentant Trixie S3E05
"It's the least I could do. I treated you and your friends so horribly when I was wearing that Alicorn Amulet. I just couldn't control myself. You can forgive me, can't you?"
— Trixie
"Hmmm. Sure."
— Twilight Sparkle
"Oh, good. Don't you think the Great and Apologetic Trixie is the most magnificent humble pony you've ever seen?!"
— Trixie
Exit Trixie.

Where, O, where in this exchange does Trixie say "Golly whiz, this changes everything! I'm going to one-eighty on my life right now!"?

A great many of us have been yammering that this episode should not be because Trixie was redeemed or reformed at the end of Magic Duel. This is another dangerous buzzword, and it is even worse than "out of character" in this community. Being "reformed" is not a matter of flipping a switch and instantaneously becoming good. Magic Duel is the last we see of Trixie in the main series, so her "reformation" only extends as far as the line when she congratulates herself for being apologetic.

Now, some of us also point to the comics, particularly Friends Forever Issue 6 and Manehattan Mysteries. Summer of 2014 was kind to Trixie.

In the first of these comics, Trixie and Rainbow Dash team up to free the former from the clutches of the Diamond Dogs who have made her their queen. This union stems from the reality that Trixie is trapped and unable to escape without the assistance of another pony. She is not particularly friendly either. It is a matter of necessity. She acts out of desperation. Also, note that Twilight Sparkle is absent.

In the second of these comics, Trixie is considerably less-of-a-jerk, but she remains the Great and Powerful Trixie. This time she gains the help of Rarity and the Apples to clear her name of a crime, but again it is a matter of her being desperate and having few other ponies upon whom she can depend. Again, note that Twilight Sparkle is absent.

So, here is the deal. Trixie apologized for what she did to the City of Ponyville. Trixie did not vow to change her ways. Trixie has only been friendly when in trouble. Trixie has not interacted with Twilight Sparkle since she made that apology, obscure chapter books notwithstanding.

All of you who think Trixie is already a problem with this episode need to get a grip and look at the facts. There was no instantaneous reformation. There was no suddenly-Trixie-is-good moment. That apology was an apology and nothing more.

Trixie is still Trixie.

Look at the time

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In addition to perpetuating the abuse of such banal phrases as "redemption" and "out of character," the individuals already lambasting this episode simply for the content of its synopsis are responsible for other unfortunate things.

Season Six has given us reasons to be concerned. There is an entirely new stock of writers in the studio, and a new main character has entered our dramatis personae. However, that does not excuse overreactions like the ones we are seeing. It is okay to be worried, but condemning bold new episodes before they even leave the gate is rash and grating. It is unpleasant. It is a disservice to one's own reputation and to the community who enjoys the series. The exchange of opinions is delightful, but when the opinions are as ill-conceived as this kind of drivel, it becomes a sickly and repulsive affair.

So, if you please, take a moment to consider your thoughts on this matter carefully. Ask whether they are grounded in anything more substantial than your fears surrounding the new season. Ask whether you can support the conclusions you have drawn. Ask yourself whether the synopsis really betokens impending disaster. Then, only then, should you foist your bitter censures and doomsday prophecies into the article comment sections. Alternatively, you may wait until the episode airs.

Thank you, and good evening.