What's up, everypony! Miipack603 here with my thoughts on the recently released premiere episodes of Season 6, which came refreshingly sooner than most of us expected! Without further or do, let's jump into my review on The Crystalling, Parts 1 and 2!
Let me begin this review by saying that I thoroughly enjoyed watching this episode, but admittedly it took repeated viewings for me to appreciate exactly what occured in this two-parter. I had seen almost every promo and spoiler-related material concerning this episode's release, yet I was still enthused while I watched it and it certainly kept my interest throughout! Now, let's get into the nitty-gritty on my thoughts about the good and bad elements in this episode.
Firstly, I think the overall pacing of the episode and the layout of events was great, which I thought was handled better than most season premieres/finales thus far. I've seen several brony reviews on this episode that the first part was "too slow" and "took too much time to establish the plot". On the contrary, I thought this was a great approach to the storyline, as it allowed some more time for character development. When I saw some of the initial previews, I was so afraid that the reveal of the baby would be the pre-intro scene, but I was glad that the writers decided to focus on Starlight Glimmer interacting with the Mane 6 and Spike. Speaking of which, I was really happy with how Starlight was handled in this episode. Despite my initial disappointment with her reformation, I am starting to appreciate Starlight as a potenital main character because she has so much potential for development, which certainly showed in this premiere. I also liked the dynamic between her and Spike; it really brings out another dimension to both of their characters (I also really like her new manestyle!)
Now, onto possibly the most controversial segment of the episode - the reveal of Flurry Heart. When I saw the previews, I was not all that surprised that she would be born an alicorn, yet the size of her wings and horn were certainly a shock! This could mean all sorts of things for Equestria; will she be even more powerful than Celestia and Luna, or something even worse? I was hoping that the princesses would address the prospect of a pony being born an alicorn, but they gave us something mroe interesting by saying that Equestria has never seen something like this before. Possibly unlike most bronies, I do not see this as a poor move on the writers part, because it simply means that Celestia and Luna were possibly not born alicorns, which opens them up to an even mroe interesting backstory which will hopefully be adressed sometime in this season. As for the baby itself, I think she is a very cute character that I would like to see more of, but I'm pretty neutral on the whole "baby magic" situation. I also like the dynamic between Shining Armor and Cadence in this episode; they actually acted like new parents would, which sort of grounds the show on a more relatable level, which is always a good thing!
Next, I'd like to discuss the other main plot point in this episode - Starlight rekindling her friendship with Sunburst. First off, I want to say that I like the way both Sunburst and Starlight had "skeletons" that they try to hide from each other; it helps Starlight realize that she's not as flawed as she may seem. Also, I appreciate that they eventually rekindled their relationship without the help of Twilight's list, as Spike mentions towards the end of the episode; this could open up so many possibilities for Starlight on her road to reformation. As for Sunburst, I didn't really feel anything for him at the end of Season 5, but I like his character, design, voice, and overall personality better after watching this episode; his abilities and flaws match perfectly with Starlight's, and I look forward to seeing more interaction between the two of them in future episodes!
As I said before, it took repeated viewings for me to truely like this episode, because if there's one thing this episode has that hinders its potential, it would be the amount of exposition throughout the epsiode. I know that the recap of previous episodes is primarily for new viewers, but anypony who is watching the show this far into its airing should have at least read up on what happened in previous episodes to faintly understand what is happening. Also, is it just me, or was there more recapping previous episodes in this premiere than any other episode on the show? Despite this aspect, I don't feel that the exposition hinders the overall progress of the episode so much for me to hate it in general; I was able to tune most of it out in order to enjoy the new elements to the show.
In closing, I'd like to briefly mention a few more random tidbits: this episode had two more of my favorite moments in the show thus far; the first is that Celestia actually DID something to help the story! I hope this bit of action from the pale alicorn opens up the possibility for a larger role in an upcoming episode. The second is something that I truely was not expecting - Twilight's parents got DIALOGUE!!!! I actually had to pause the episode for a full two minutes to get over my extreme excitement; no joke, this moment ranks right up there with the CMC getting their cutie marks for me!!!
Overall, I thought this was a great start to Season 6 and it certainly has me hyepd for the rest of the season and what we'll get to see in upcoming episodes! I'll admit, this is probably my favorite season premiere to date! Sorry this blog post is so long, but I appreciate those who have stuck around long enough to read this! Be sure to comment below on what you think about this episode.