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Friendship is Reviewing Episode 17: The Show Stoppers

Introduction

The episode starts off with Applejack bringing the CMC somewhere. Apple Bloom asks where she's taking them. Applejack reples by saying that they're almost there. Okay big mistake Applejack. The CMC are prone to questions. Fortunately, they don't. Instead, Sweetie Belle confirms that she's never been in this place before. The four go on further and Apple Bloom accidentaly hits Scootaloo with a bush followed by an apology. Scotoaloo asks are they there yet. Okay, not exactly the question I was thinking. I was thinking more along the lines of Apple Bloom's question. Sweetie Belle continues to go on to say that she doesn't know what they're doing. They finally reach their location and Apple Bloom asks what they're looking at. Scootaloo has no idea and Sweetie Belle wants to know what the thing even is. It turns out to be the new CMC clubhouse. Unfortunately, it's torn down much to the crusaders dismay. Applejack announces that this was her clubhouse when she was their age. Applejack says that it hasn't been used in a while but on the bright side, it's empty, on a secluded, private part of the farm and it's all theirs. Considering the CMC are a secret society, then I'd say these are great upsides. One part of the roof tears down and Applejack says that all it needs is some TLC. Scootaloo questions the TLC and thinks in this case, it should mean totally lost cause instead of tender loving care. Apple Bloom asks why they should turn something like this into a clubhouse. Applejack replies with that maybe they'll discover their talent for... . She's interrupted when she tears through the clubhouse. She finishes her sentence with house cleaning. To be honest, I'm on Applejack's side. The CMC want to be secret, they need something secluded, and by what Applejack said, they should now be obsessed with the clubhouse.

Scene 1

Scootaloo is seen drawing Twilight's library on a map. We see on the map other things drawn.

Scootaloo gets on her scooter and does all sorts of insane and awesome stunts, such as going fast, going over a ramp over other ponies, spins Granny Smith around, jumps her scooter over a log, ducks under a tree but when a bigger tree comes, she jumps off her scooter, over the tree while her scooter moves and back on to the scooter and finishes it off by speeding into Apple Bloom ut doesn't crash and is able to slow down the scooter. This obviously means that Scootaloo's special talent is something sports - like.

Apple Bloom compliments Scootaloo's scooter driving. Scootaloo appreciates this but then compliments Apple Bloom for being able to fix the clubhouse and pick the right paint for it. In my review of Stare Master, I said how in The Show Stoppers, Apple Bloom's special talent is building. This is where it's shown.

Scootaloo asks what's Sweetie Belle up to. We see Sweetie Belle polishing stuff with her tail, while beautifully singing to herself. Apple Bloom and Scootaloo find her with the help of Sweetie Belle's singing. Scootaloo asks what that sweet tune she's singing is. Sweetie belle replies with that it's just their new theme song. Apple Bloom and Scootaloo are impressed and ask they teach her. Sweetie Belle at first is unsure because she's only come up with one part but agrees to anyways.

Applejack is on her way in to see how the clubhouse is going but overhears a beautiful melody throuh the window of Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom singing. Applejack's impressed and I am too. This part where they're working on the theme song has a wonderful feel to it but is ultimately ruined by Scootaloo's singing which is more yelling. This hurts both my ears and Applejack. Applejack decides to come in anyways and compliments them on their fine job and asks what's next. They tell her that now that they have their clubhouse, map of Ponyville and a theme song, now they're going to go out and discover their special talent, with cheesy lines that they come up with. Applejack leaves for her apples. The CMC are now ready to search for their cutie mark.

Scene 2

A montage is shown of the CMC doing different methods to find their special talent in different locations, according to their map. They start off at Sweet Apple Acres and bring in food for pigs. The pigs stampede through them, eating their food. The CMC are covered in mud, except for their flanks, but no luck.

Next, they go to Sugarcube Corner and team up to put food into a machine and unfortunately, Scootaloo gets pulled in causing Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle to try and pull her out but get stuck inside the machine aswell. They come out, still stuck with eachother, and check on their flanks, but no cutie mark.

Next, they try Carousel Boutique to give a pony a makeover but instead give her clown hair and still no cutie mark.

Next, they go to the farm. They play some kind of card game where Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo put in a type of card into as card machine and Apple Bloom has to try and put another card in to guess it. They still don't have a cutie mark.

After, they go to what looks like a big mountain that they try to climb. They show great teamwork by pulling eachother up, but after fall, showing that they were climbing a tiny stump.

They try going underwater, but are chased by a squid.

Finally, they try Twilight's library, where Twilight and Cheerilee come in. Spike tells them that he had nothing to do with this and Twilight wonders what's going on as they see the CMC trying to be cutie mark librarians because Spike asked them to. Twilight is angry at him but as usual, he doesn't know why she's angry at him. This is kind of true considering a dragon taken from his home, is sent to do all the work without any praise. Twilight informs the CMC that she thinks they're approaching this the wrong way and instead of trying to do things in areas that they aren't familiar with, try doing things in areas that they already like. Cheerilee suggests the perfect place to start, which is the school talent show. Cheerilee explains all the different things in it like best dramatic performance, best comedy act and best magic act. She surely believes that the CMC will find their talent. Apple Bloom agrees with this and they come up with the ideas of juggling, acting, magic tricks, square dancing, tightrope walking and tiger taming. Twilight interrupts them with that they're missing the whole point and think about the things that they already enjoy doing. The CMC agree and announce it, amazingly. Alright, so true the short phase where the CMC were getting on my nerves, with the advice of the two smartest ponies in town, they've come to their senses. Well good. No, that doesn't happen. Instead, after this, whereas beforehand, the episode was pretty good, this is the point where it downfalls in the worst directions.

Scene 3

They start off by gathering supplies, starting off at Carousel Boutique with different colour paper. Rarity yells at Sweetie Belle to bring the supplies back but Sweetie Belle promises that they'll give them back because they're just borrowing.

They get a fan from Mr. Breezy and Apple Bloom asks Sweetie Belle what they need the fan for and Sweetie Belle asks her to trust her on this one.

Scootaloo gets six wooden planks, four by eight plywood, a box of nails, four cans of paint and four brushes. She asks if they need anything else and Sweetie Belle tells her that they need instructions on using six wooden planks, four by eight plywood, a box of nails, four cans of paint and four brushes.

LIKE A BOSS!

They get a ghost book from Twilight and Spike and Twilight asks Spike what he thinks they're using that for. Spike escapes from getting into this by saying that he has no idea and doesn't know if he should be excited or scared to find out.

Spike: Always in problems and trains himself not to be.

At the clubhouse, Apple Bloom announces that she's glad they're doing this as a team. Sweetie Belle agrees but asks what they're doing. Scootaloo replies with that they're doing a super awesome dramatic song for the talent show of course. Sweetie Belle agrees and adds on with super cool scenery and amazing costumes. Well, she's not really working on the costumes but nice thinking of the costumes anyways Sweetie Belle. Apple Bloom adds on that they also have her dance moves. Wait, her dance moves. Scootaloo's the athletic one, shouldn't she be the one dancing. Scootaloo finishes with that it'll be so amazing. Apple Bloom thinks Sweetie Belle should be the singer but unfortunately, Sweetie Belle has stage fright and asks Apple Bloom to remember what Twilight told them and more rather wants to be a designer like her sister. What? Sweetie Belle, if you don't want to perform in front of an open crowd, why did you agree to be even in the talent show? I know the singer is the most vital part but so is the dancers and costume designers. Why, in the name of Celestia did you agree to do the talent show? Apple Bloom's shocked reaction to what Sweetie Belle says is my reaction. Just rewatch that part and look at Apple Bloom. Next, for some reason, after hearing her beautiful melody, the CMC still think Sweetie Belle should be the designer. Apple Bloom suggests Scootaloo do the choreography because of her great moves. Good for Apple Bloom deciding not to do the dancing. Scootaloo even nods her head in agreeement. Wow, maybe I'm looking at this episode the wrong way. After nodding her head, Scootaloo shakes it and declines. Wait, Scootaloo had fun on her scooter with all those moves. You could see the smile on her face. Twilight said do something you already like. The CMC agreed to this so what's Scootaloo doing here? So, declining the dance offer, Scootaloo instead wants to sing. Oh please, no. Sweetie Belle was a perfect singer and if she wasn't going to do it, for stupid reasons, get Apple Bloom to. Her singing wasn't perfect, but she was good enough. Scootaloo on the other hand, was horrible. You could argue that they're just kids still learning but this is different because they saw what each were good at. To make it worse, Scootaloo wants to do a rock ballad. Give me a break, please. She suggests Apple Bloom be the dancer but Apple Bloom understandably doesn't think she's very good at dancing but does like kung-fu and uses that as a dance. Finally, someone who makes sense. Apple Bloome doesn't really have a choice, doesn't consider herself a good dancer, but uses her kung-fu for it. Great improv Apple Bloom. After their terrible plans, the CMC get to work.

The CMC are at work. Sweetie Belle is working on the fabric, Scootaloo's playing a piano and Apple Bloom is dancing to classical music. Obviously, while Apple Bloom's dancing, she falls on Scootaloo, slightly hurting her. Scootaloo is annoyed and Apple Bloom thinks that she has four left feet, can't dance and can't spin right. Well good, Apple Bloom doesn't think she can dance, because she can't, and wants to quit. Apple Bloom works well here. Scootaloo on the other hand, disagrees, and suggests Apple Bloom keep her head forward. By demonstrating this, Scootaloo shows off some amazing dancing and asks Apple Bloom to practise like any good friend would. Apple Bloom tries again but hurts herself but fortunately is okay. I see, practise and they'll succeed. But remember, some things to get good at take long. And Apple Bloom doing something she hardly knows about is a bad way. Nice plan though Scootaloo.

Scene 4

Scootaloo is working on lyrics for the song on her piano but with no progress. Next, fabric rolls on to her piano that Sweetie Belle is chasing and insulting her fabric. She asks Scootaloo how the song's going but realises that it's not going too good. She looks at the lyrics but sees that they're not very good. She makes new lyrics for Scootaloo that she beautifully sings and while it's improv, it shows what could be Sweetie Belle's cutie mark, something to do with music. Scootaloo adds on the new lyrics but her and Sweetie Belle see the fabric going further, with it falling into the lake.

Sweetie Belle puts Rarity's designs on a clothes line and tries her best to make new outfits but accidentaly makes five hooves in it. This shows that Sweetie Belle is horrible at art, unlike her sister.

Sweetie Belle sees Apple Bloom spinning around and falling over. Sweetie Belle asks how it's coming along and Apple Bloom believes that she should just rely on punches and kicks. She asks Sweetie Belle why she has five holes to put hooves through and Sweetie Belle replies by saying that she'll never be a designer like Rarity. Apple Bloom tries to cheer her up by suggesting Sweetie Belle uwse the dress form because it'll help her with the pattern and help her put on the right dresses, something Sweetie Belle didn't know was for. Apple Bloom also suggests Sweetie Belle put her paints in water before starting again, because the designs for the background look horrible. Apple Bloom asks if Sweetie belle is using power tools.

Applejack looks through the window of the clubhouse but sees what looks like terrible performances. Luckily, unlike Applejack, we don't see the performances, we only see the silouhettes.

Applejack is walking out and says to herself how she wasn't expecting that. She overhears the crusaders coming out saying how great they did, and believe that they're ready. They see Applejack and Scootaloo asks if she saw them practising. Applejack tries to hold back how terrible she thought it was and says that she did. Apple Bloom asks Applejack how she thinks they did. Applejack is speechless and Scootaloo takes this as a compliment and tells the crusaders that they're gonna leave 'em speechless. The CMC let out a cheer but Applejack is worried.

Scene 5

We finally see the first sighting of the talent show where Snips and Snails are doing the bunny from a hat trick only this time, replacing the bunny with a carrot. The trick is ultimately ruined when Snails eats the carrot.

The next act is Sunny Days and Peachy Pie doing a poem on roller skates. Sweetie Belle ask they break a leg and Apple Bloom is shocked to hear this but Sweetie Belle tells her why to say it. Twilight sees them and asks how they're doing but the crusaders are nervous. Twilight asks them to remember to stick with what they're good at and tells Sweetie Belle that she can't wait to hear her sing. Sweetie Belle asks why everypony thinks she's the one who sings. Let's see Sweetie Belle, probably because of how awesome your singing was in Stare Master. Scootaloo tells Twilight that she's actually the main singer. Apple Bloom says that she's the dancer and Sweetie Belle says that she's the designer. This shocks Twilight and asks if they're sure. Cheerilee tells them that they're on next.

Song

And so we get, ugh, the worst song in this show so far. The designs from Sweetie Belle are awful, Apple Bloom has terrible dance moves, but the worst part is Scootalo's singing. It is off putting and annoying, and this is the creators way with their comedy. Mind you, the comedy in My Little Pony Friendship is Magic is my second favourite thing about the show. But this is their attempt at comedy. There's annoying comedy that works and annoying comedy that doesn't. The only good thing I can say about this torture of a song is the lyrics. They're well written, mostly by Sweetie Belle. Think of how awesome this song would be if Apple Bloom did the props and design, Scootaloo danced and Sweetie Belle sang. That would make for something pretty impressive. But no, we get this.

Scene 5 Part 2

After the song, all the ponies laugh at how pathetic the crusaders are.

Going backstage, Scootaloo doesn't think it went as well as she expected. Apple Bloom doesn't believe that they're laughing at her and Swetie Belle asks if it was that bad. Oh, you don't know the half of it Sweetie Belle.

Cheerilee and Spike see them and Cheerilee asks them to get back on stage. Sweetie Belle declines and Apple Bloom believes that they'll just laugh at them some more. Cheerilee believes that they made a great effort and the girls reluctantly go back on stage.

The awards are being presented to the competitors and it turns out that Diamond Tiara, Silver Spoon and Twist were performing too. Each award is presented. The CMC hide behind Snips and Snails but they're presented their award first that Spike hands out. Then we hear the two argue with eachother annoying Spike and Cheerilee. See? That's annoying comedy done right.

The CMC are now hiding behind Sunny Days and Peachy Pie who get their awards next.

The last award goes to... the CMC? For best comedy act? You know what, no, no, that's not how it works. Cheerilee was right there at Twilight's library when Twilight gave advice. These are her students, so she probably already knows what they're good at. It's not comedy.

So the CMC go backstage and are happy once again. Sweetie Belle thinks that they may have gotten their cutie marks but when they open their costumes, no marks. Twilight compliments them on what was somehow a comedy performance. The CMC are down in the dumps though but Twilight tells them that they don't sound too excited. Scootaloo is glad they won comedy and all, but they still don't have their cutie marks. Twilight feels bad for them.

Moral

Apple Bloom beleives she knows why and Twilight asks. Twilight asks them to tell hera s she'd love to make a report to the princess about it. Sweetie Belle explains that maybe they were trying too hard. Twilight asks what else. Scootaloo beleives that instead of forcing themselves to do something that's not meant for them, Apple Bloom finishes off with that she should try and embrace their true talent. Twilight asks what this is and each of the CMC think comedy.

Scene 5 Part 3

Applejack, Rarity and Rainbow Dash see the CMC and Applejack thinks they did it. They run over to each of them, asking about their awards. Twilight believes the cutie mark will happen one day. Oh Twilight, you sure love to tease.

Final Thoughts

So how does the episode hold up? Pretty bad actually. It starts off promising because this is the first time we see a full on CMC episode. The first is Stare Master, but that was a subplot. This episode is a full crusaders episode, and it fails miserably. Don't get me wrong, it started off good seeing exactly what each member's special talent was. Infact, I really liked how throughout this episode, it's full indication about how big of friends the cutie mark crusaders are with eachother. But that's really one of the only good things I can say about the episode. The negatives highly outweigh the positives. For starters, Sweetie Belle doesn't want to perform in front of a crowd, even though she agreed to do the talent show beforehand. Scootaloo also was bad here. She had fun on her scooter yet for no reason, wanted to sing. Again, I know that they're children, but it's completely obvious what to do. Twilight Sparkle, the smartest in Ponyville, gave you advice and you decided to take it but never used it. But the worst part, by far, was the song. It is an unbearable excuse for one and I know the creators intentionally made it bad for comedic purposes, but that's not how annoying comedy works. As for the moral, it's good, but the CMC don't even follow it after. They aren't seen trying comedy in other episodes. They still try different things all the time. What was the point. I think actually it's worse than Feeling Pinkie Keen. That episode had missed oppurtunities but had upsides and before the terrible payoff they were doing terrible but just before the payoff, they pulled off something incredibly action packed. This episode on the other hand, is childish with annoying dialogue done terribly and nothing good just before the payoff.

Positives

-The CMC show great teamwork towards eachother

-Sweetie Belle's a boss

-Spike's awesome moment

-Applejack represents the audience perfectly until the end

Negatives

-Sweetie Belle doesn't want to perform in front of a crowd for stupid reasons

-Scootaloo wants to be singer for no reason

-Terrible Song

-Worst Comedy In An Episode of FiM

-Talents CMC show are completely forgotten by them

Elements of Episode

Characteristics: D+

Entertainment: C-

Pacing: C-

Introduction: B-

Humour: D+

Premise: F+

Story: F+

Moral: C

Final Score: F

Tomorrow: A Dog and Pony Show

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