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File: 1533991803094.png (2.27 MB, 2481x1754, friendship u.png)

Season 8 Episode 17 Discussion Thread Marimo!!SpikeCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829095

This thread is meant for discussing impressions on this week's episode, Friendship University, during and after it airs.

Be mindful of saying spoilers before they show up on TV.

EquestriaGuy!1DerpyVA.6Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829096

Exactly

AnonymousCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829099

The one episode I was hoping for and it was a nothing burger that broke no new ground.

Other than the opening montage of Starswirl interacting with a few ponies, this was the most disappointing story they've written this season. The voice acting was phoned in, especially Maurice LaMarche's cameo as Chancellor Neighsay.

6/10
This post was edited by its author on .

AustroSpikeCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829100

It was really weird story-wise, but big up for Plainity and Eyepatch.

EquestriaGuy!1DerpyVA.6Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829101

>>36829100
Word. That gag worked well.

Nother NonymousCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829102

File: 1534073075890.jpg (29.84 KB, 262x324, Mr_Horse_Hmm.jpg)

Okay, we have to note the elephant in the room. Flimflam artist -- casino developer -- racist policies -- fake for-profit university -- compelled to return tuition?

Right. This elephant is wearing an orange toupee.

Plusses: Good animation (Starswirl's beard pull, Flim and Flam's enhanced range of expressions). I loved Plainity's disguise, especially the bubblegum. Nice to see Treehugger and Saddledor Dali again. I liked the final seconds, in which Rarity casually confronts the fact that Sewing for Friendship makes no sense. Good story, with compelling suspense (Twilight getting caught with her saddlebags down doing something discreditable) -- up to a point.

Minuses: The story falls apart towards the end. If you're teaching real and valuable lessons, is there something wrong with running a for-profit school? If there isn't, why did Flim and Flam stand down when it was discovered that they had plans for those profits? Why did they cave so quickly and easily, especially after getting Neighsay's official approval for being a racist institution? Why did all those western students who couldn't travel all the way to Ponyville instantly cheer upon being invited to do so?

Does Twilight charge tuition at her school? If not, where does she get the school funds (that Rarity swore she wasn't using to buy sewing machines)? Research grants? Royal endowment?

In short, the plot was as full of holes as Chrysalis's legs. Also, the song wasn't up to the standards of previous Flim and Flam production numbers, which have gone progressively downhill from SSCS6000 through Leap of Faith to this episode.
This post was edited by its author on .

AnonymousCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829103

File: 1534083015557.png (915.08 KB, 1280x720, serveimage.png)

>>36829102
Bravo! This is the best examination of the episode in general and has a number of very fine questions.

Having gone to a for-profit university, I got the instant hook of how Flim and Flam were making money. Note that Starswirl got clear preferential treatment when he purchased his study sheet where the next student was extorted into selling his sweeter to buy one study sheet.

If you've never attended a college, you won't appreciate the sting of the costs of books and class readers, collected articles specified by the professor running that class. It's the biggest scam in higher education and as bad as the amount charged for tuition. Some class textbooks run up to $120 each depending on the major a student is taking. Class readers can run from $25 to $60 for each class.

Then there's Naysay's appearance. Note the final act where Twilight is talking to Rarity back at Twilight's office. Note that Rarity asked about where Flim and Flam got a copy of Twilight's teaching materials. Gee, I wonder who else who read her plans could have given them a free copy?

As for where Twilight is getting the bits to run her school, that's a another good point that has never been addressed. I'm not even going to touch that without some story canon for evidence.

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829105

File: 1534138860715.jpg (54.43 KB, 772x1034, dash27.jpg)

Pretty good episode, good to see Starswirl and Neighsay and the Flim Flams again.

Also, proven once more that ponies fall for almost any kind of disguise, heh.

OpinionatedCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829110

Flim and Flam's actions made little sense, the Chancellor's made absolutely none. Starswirl added positively nothing to the story, and the whole friendship university concept doesn't seem self-consistent. It's extra disappointing because it feels like the major flaws of the episode could very easily have been fixed with some thought.

But besides most of the episode being lame and nonsensical, I actually thought Twilight and Rarity shined here. Despite Rarity's presence seeming arbitrary at first, her support, disguise, infiltration (and temporarily falling for the scam) were all very Rarity, and could not have been filled in by another pony. Twilight showed some pretty great resolve, committing to finding the truth even if it risks her own reputation and her school. Too bad it falls a little flat when she says "Don't worry, I've got a plan" and her plan is to just follow them, and it works. The end.

Nother NonymousCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829111

File: 1534258573041.jpg (67.74 KB, 304x308, Mr_Horse_Yessir_I_like_it.jpg)

>>36829110
>could not have been filled in by another pony

This is a great standard for judging characterization in any script, pony or otherwise.

OpinionatedCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829114

>>36829111
Thank you. It's easy to think of it that way in this setting, where getting a cutie mark happens specifically by solving some problem not that only you could solve, but in a way only you could solve it.

OpinionatedCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829115

Speaking of, it's a little bit funny that Rarity was there to be so supportive of Twilight's suspicions. Because you just know that if Spike were there he'd probably just say "Are you sure you're not just jealous of their success and having Starswirl enrolled?"

AustroSpikeCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829117

>>36829115
So Rarity is basically evil Spike?

OpinionatedCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829118

Ideally, Neighsay so cavalierly granting unlimited accreditation to a scam school should drastically harm his reputation, and that of the EEA.

unlikeable ponyCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 36829137

>>36829102
The best explanation I've seen (as that is a really big issue) is "Flim and flam admitted blatantly plagiarizing Twilight's book", so she could possibly threaten them with a legal suit if they didn't return the money.

Honestly, I think a better fix would have been for her to allow them to keep teaching, but force them to lower their rates down to acceptable prices. Like you said, nothing inherently wrong with a for profit college if its done at a reasonable rate.


>>36829118
>>36829110
>>36829103
Yeah, this episode basically exists to be foreshadowing of Cozyglow being Neighsay's mole for the finale.

>>36829101
>>36829100

The infuriating thing is that's really the ONLY good thing about this episode... but its also one of the things that actually made me laugh the most this season.

Rarity's obsession with the eyepatch was pretty chuckleworthy.


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