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S03 E10 - "Keep Calm and Flutter On"


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hi hi

There are a lot of reasons for Nightmare Moon to confront Twilight. Unlike Discord who had seen the elements in action before, she didn't know all about the Elements of Harmony, or what each of the mane six was capable of. Unlike Discord, she didn't understand the spark, the elusive element of magic, or that she wouldn't be able to destroy the elements. While she could fly rather quickly as a wispy cloud, she wasn't that much faster than anypony else. The entire reason why she became filled with hate and bitterness was because she wanted ponies to pay attention to her, and you cant get attention when you're in hiding, or if you can't get a big enough head start. (Rainbow Dash was clearly faster than Nightmare Moon.) Unlike Discord, she had an opportunity to defeat her opponents before they even found the elements of harmony. Unlike Discord, Nightmare Moon needed to be present to do things, she needed a big billowing cloud to strike the guards with lightning. In Return of Harmony, Discord was able to cause chaos all across Equestria at once, and could observe, speak to, and mess with ponies without physically being present. Perhaps Nightmare Moon could have tried avoiding the Elements of Harmony by running away, but raising the sun and moon aren't exclusive powers of either Celestia or Nightmare Moon.

(I didn't used to have to turn my brain off, and I don't plan to start any time soon.)

Edit: In other news, I didn't get a chance to watch the credits, so I'm wondering if anyone else can confirm if this is legit or not?

218294__safe_rarity_text_credits.png.png

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You're using the absence of evidence as evidence of absence and that just doesn't work.

You're basically saying that if superman uses heat vision in episode 1 then doesn't use it in episode 2 he inexplicably just lost the power. Rather than understanding that the story just didn't call for it.

((all that NMM stuff is a tangent that's unrelated, but kind of relevant. Luna could control the weather without touching anything...Meaning the moment the mane six stepped out of town hall they couldve been struck dead by lightning. There'd be no story if that happened though. Also who said hiding? As said before Luna's powers point toward NMM being able to smite anypony she wants to.))

Discord going on a chaos rampage wasn't the story.

If the villains in MLP got genre savvy the mane six would never win.(when sombra turned solid he could've stopped his advance and retreated. Discord and NMM could have both teleported away from the beam.) You're turning your brain off if you believe they actually should have WON those confrontations with villains. But we are suppose to suspend disbelief for that stuff.

PIS

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hi hi

There's no need to get personal TotalEclipse.

Discord displayed a drastically different amount of ability in Keep Calm and Flutter On, than he did in Return of Harmony, and it would have been advantageous for him to use the level of power he displayed in Return of Harmony. Why didn't he? "Because the plot said so," is a cop out answer. Did he have a copy of the script too? I mean, continuity isn't necessary, but at that point he's really a different character all together.

Fanon is not the same as canon. Nightmare Moon never killed anyone, and was never shown to be capable of doing so. In fact, she was actually shown as being incapable of doing so. She literally struck three ponies with lightning and all it did was stun them a bit. That is not the absence of evidence, that is the presence of evidence.

With Cadence in possession of the Crystal Heart, Sombra would have been defeated anyways, whether he advanced or retreated. That was the whole point of the Crystal Fair. Discord and Nightmare Moon might have been able to teleport away if they'd had enough time, but they clearly didn't. Nightmare Moon had to spool up into a little cloud first, and for Discord, they showed that the Elements of Harmony were already working before they actually hit him with the Rainbow.

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hi hi

Gravy boat was awesome. :) That whole scene was pretty neat actually. It showed that Discord understood right and wrong well enough to troll everyone else by poking at their rudeness. This was actually part of why I said he showed more humanity in this episode even before he decided to play nice. In Return of Harmony, he ridiculed the mane six's strengths, but in this episode, he made fun of their flaws.

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Princess Celestia: No need, Spike. I have them right here, and I've cast a spell so Discord can't take them and hide them again.

If Discord's abilities are indeed limited, I think this would be the best explanation. We don't know anything about this spell or the mechanics of it just that it somehow stops Discord from taking the elements. Perhaps his ability to move around is hindered by this? There's no real demonstration of how it works (Discord never actually tries to physically take the elements; he just knows that he can't), so it's hard to say.

Of course, Discord is still moving around, off doing things off screen we don't even see, like invading Twilight's library completely unnoticed and finding and stealing all the reforming spells Twilight apparently has. I'm not convinced he really was all that much weaker in the first place. I more think he was holding back and staying in one place more because it amused him to do so. Going off to spread random chaos on Return of Harmony levels probably would have only gotten him turned back to stone instantly; staying around to troll these ponies that are hoping to change him, probably would seem like a better opportunity.

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so discord gets his redemption...............before him, trixie got hers.......................why do i feel like that episode and this one is connected to something much bigger. it feels like its part of a plot.

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If Discord's abilities are indeed limited, I think this would be the best explanation. We don't know anything about this spell or the mechanics of it just that it somehow stops Discord from taking the elements. Perhaps his ability to move around is hindered by this? There's no real demonstration of how it works (Discord never actually tries to physically take the elements; he just knows that he can't), so it's hard to say.

He does try to take Twilight's crown at the beginning of the dinner party by saying "May I take your hat?"

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He does try to take Twilight's crown at the beginning of the dinner party by saying "May I take your hat?"

Yeah, he reaches over to take her 'crown thingie'. Twilight then flees over to the other five, "Hang onto your elements, girls!" :-|

Nice meal they have..Apple Tarts and Mashed Potatoes...Guess they needed a meal where a fork and knife was not needed. :!:

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I'm... actually not sure what to think of this episode. On one hand (or rather: hoof) it was fairly well written, had good jokes, and it has Discord, for Celestia's sake, but on the other hand, I have some problems with it.

For one thing, I'm not sure how terribly happy I am with D being reformed. A: if all the villains get to reform, it kinda takes away what made Luna so unique in the show. That is to say, she was the character that got redeemed fairly early one, and struggled with the whole concept. First Trixie, and now Discord, and soon we'll have back up element-bearers if it continues at this rate. Not a big problem, but more me being a bit nitpicky.

The second problem I have with this episode is the existence of a reformation spell that Twilight mentions. Now, we don't ever get to see it in action because it was kind of eated (which I did love about this episode: Discord being such a sly dog. Goat. Dragon. Thing) but its implied that it reforms ponies. This bugs me intensely. I know mind-warping magic exists as evidenced by pretty much every main villain thus far (with the exception of Nightmare Moon), but thus far its also been clearly classified as a villainous type of magic. The fact that Twilight has no qualms in using it kind of freaks me out, even given the circumstances. I know Discord is kind of, well, evil, but the point still stands that even though the use it for good, Twilight was essentially planning to do to Discord what Discord did to the main six. That was plan B.

The other problem I have is as follows: How in Equestria can Celestia prevent Discord from stealing the elements? As a serious, good to honest question, how? Its already been cannonized that Discord is both more powerful than Celestia and able to circumvent her spells, seeing as how he got them in the first place. So, I guess she made this spell specifically or.... I dunno. Maybe I'm just overthinking it.

Don't get me wrong, it was a great episode, and I absolutely adored all of the different ways Discord demonstrated his nigh omnipotence, such as the rolling of the eyes, and even the purifying of Sweet Apple Acres.

But yeah, Discord's back! Everypony can cross that off the checklist of things they want, and we can go back to trying to find Derpy. Or something. I don't know.

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Because if the people who claimed that Discord needed to do those things he did in the past were right, on account of his inherent nature, then making him do otherwise would have been making him suffer.

Thing is, reforming Discord has nothing to do with making him less chaotic. He could make a ton of choas without harming people. Aside from a lack of whip cream the chocolate rain didn't hurt anybody nor did having neat dancing things at dinner until they started going after people. What Fluttershy did was reign in Discord to the point that he will do things that won't earn her disapointment, and hopefully Discord will want others to like him as well, leading him to do good choatic things

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He does try to take Twilight's crown at the beginning of the dinner party by saying "May I take your hat?"

Which is why I find this spell of Celestia's curious. Perhaps it really does inhibit his ability to move around freely rather than preventing him from physically touching the elements?

More likely though, he's just trolling Twilight there. After all, there's no way she'd ever give it to him. :P

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I say, (therefore is true) that Discord did not understand the "friendship" concept on that instant, but placed it on the back burner for some more consideration and just "kept calm and fluttered on" as if his "insta-goodie" was for real. On the last sequence (with Celestia) he acted up it's goody-goody facade, but sotto voce-d his doubts (only making small bad deeds?) I hope he would understand the meaning of friendship on a good way...

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I'm pretty sure he has full freedom of movement. Remember he gutted all of Twilight's books without anypony knowing?

Has anyone brought up this summit that Celestia had to go to? Equestria may not be the only part of the world, and there may be other leaders elsewhere.

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Personally, I'm still having a small bit of trouble with this episode, mainly on it's ending. Don't get me wrong, Discord as a (kinda) good guy is awesome and hopefully a promise of more hilarious antics to come, but (as everyone's already said) that ending was rushed. This really should have been two episodes, and when I first heard about it I thought it was going to be just because I couldn't see any way they could transform the worst villain on the show into a good guy in 20 minutes. And guess what? I was right.

Fortunately, Discord was so great I don't even mind that the episode felt rushed.

Also, the dinner party scene has to be one of the best scenes in the whole show. The Gravy Boat spilling gravy on RD's lap. The candles beating up RD after she blew them out. Discord as a butler. It was all so perfect.

Finally, Celestia's face when she saw Fluttershy and Discord holding hands. I bet that brought back some memories.

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hi hi

Well, we already knew that Equestria wasn't the only part of the world all the way back in Bridal Gossip, when Twilight says, "Zebras come from a faraway land," and then later in Over a Barrel and Magic Duel, we see that there are buffalo and large ponies/horses that have their own lands as well.

While I suppose there's nothing that tells us either way, Discord may not have gutted Twilight's books himself. He did have the ability to animate things to do stuff for him, like compelling the beavers to build huge dams, or animating dinnerware to hop and jump around.

Thing is, reforming Discord has nothing to do with making him less chaotic. He could make a ton of choas without harming people.

This is exactly my point. If you go back and look at the old arguments, you will see people making the argument that Discord wasn't evil because he had no choice in the matter. That if he caused suffering because it was his inherent nature, then he couldn't possibly be considered evil. We now know that he did have a choice. However, since he had never had a friend before, nobody knew at the time what would happen.

As for the "reforming spells," I didn't want to touch on this because I was afraid I would end up sounding like a big stick in the mud, but since other people are pointing it out too, I should say my part. The writers of this show have been walking an increasingly disturbing line since the end of Season 2. While I think its fine to have characters mess things up and learn their lesson, it becomes problematic when the characters don't learn their lesson, especially when those characters are authority figures in a children's show.

• Cadence's love spell manipulating the emotions of otherwise free-thinking individuals.

• Princess Celestia betting the lives of the Crystal Ponies by having Twilight go without help.

• Twilight Sparkle killing Pinkie Pie's clones.

• Twilight encouraging Spike's unhealthy dependancy issues.

• Celestia treating Discord as an object with which to cast spells, rather than a sentient being.

• Twilight Sparkle trying to find and cast a reforming spell.

Some of these things I just cant explain away, and believe me, I've tried to find a way. Generally, such methods are considered to be corrupt and immoral. If someone is dangerous to society, then society has some rights to lock them away for safekeeping, but such a society still has a responsibility to maintain some very basic rights for those imprisoned. (Once upon a time, I dared to think that it was only in the darkest recesses of authoritarian hearts that dreamed of brainwashing others into obedience.)

That being said, if the ending had acknowledged how Celestia and Twilight had been wrong, I think this episode could have been truly phenomenal, in terms of the moral of the story. (It might have been better if Celestia had just not opened her mouth at all, and left her reasoning unexplained.)

Twilight and company try to reform Discord the wrong way throughout the entire episode, and that turns out to be an excellent contrast to Fluttershy's methods. By doing it the wrong way, they help emphasize what is right about Fluttershy's methods. In many places, contractual agreements are considered null and void if the person who signed the agreement was forced to do so under duress. Telling Discord that he had to behave or else they would zap him again would not have produced any kind of meaningful agreement at all.

This is one of the fundamental flaws in authoritarianism that is being put on display for everyone to see, and so the only real downside is that the ending didn't make that more clear.

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hi hi

Elsporko, the answer is free will. All things being equal, having someone being a productive member of society is better than having them locked in a cage, but things are not equal. Some people may be very productive members of society, but if they don't get a choice in the matter, they are slaves.

If someone doesn't choose to reform their actions, if they are being forced or coerced, that is the foundations of a police state. When people don't internalize the rules, when they are only doing the right thing because they are threatened with punishment, then it becomes necessary to make good on that threat of punishment at all times, in all places. As for why brainwashing someone into being a happy, productive member of society is wrong, well, perhaps a read through A Brave New World, will be enlightening.

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You know if its one thing I really must give my grievances to in this is Princess friggin Celestia.

I mean my god how much more useless can you be Celestia?

For a royal princess you must be dumb as a rock.

I mean first you bring Discord to Ponyville and then leave for other business?

What the heck is wrong with you, I mean we have the living embodiment of Chaos here someone who you knew had great powers and abilities and yet you decided to let him free on a day you knew you would be busy on a friggin summit?

Jeez with this kind of stupidity I bet this was your speech at the Summit:

GAAAAAAAAH!

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I was pleasantly surprised. This episode was adorable. In a "Oh he gets to huggle Fluttershy now I'm jealous!" kinda way.

But it wasn't without its flaws.

My biggest issue is what I call "Rescue Rangers Syndrome." For those not old enough to remember that cartoon: Chip n' Dale's Rescue Rangers used to have this recurring formula where each episode would revolve around one of the Rangers' personal issue (Zipper feeling worthless, Gadget wondering if her inventions suck, etc), and, just to drive the point home, the other rangers would all the sudden become one-dimensional jerks who do nothing but make thoughtless comments just to make the one Focus Ranger angst even more. It was a rather annoying part of an otherwise great cartoon.

Same deal here. Fluttershy wanted to give Discord an honest chance, but the other ponies did nothing except countermand her and all but insult her to her face for her determination. It seriously almost felt out-of-character for some of them--I would expect Pinkie Pie at least to be helpful, or perhaps even Twilight to be thoughtful and try to help, instead of instantly looking for a Reforming Spell (which, yes, that also parsed to me as a straight-up mind control spell).

What is it about season three? First they make Babs Seed actually cute, and now they take Discord (who I hated when he first appeared) and made him rather likable. What's next, Chrysalis becoming cuddly?

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A lot of people have said that the episode felt rushed, and initially I agreed. Within 20 minutes, Discord goes from an amazing (or terrible) villain, to a "good guy." The premise is nigh-impossible to believe, and many felt it should have been a two-part episode as such. After watching it for the second time though, I feel that, like season 3 opener, the obvious point was not actually the message the writers were trying to convey.

I feel as though instead of turning Discord from Good to Evil, instead they (read: Fluttershy) taught Discord compassion. Previously, Discord was a character who had the powers to do what he wanted, when he wanted. Did he conquer Equestria and make his own empire? Did he amass any sort of fortune or fame? What he did was have fun. Looking at his character, I would say it was easy to see him as a very young child. He did that which amused him, not so much ignoring or reveling the suffering of others, but being oblivious to it. Granted, turning the Mane 6 grey was a pretty dang evil thing, but that could be written of as a form of self defense; they were trying to "hurt" him, so he hurt them first. Still a very childish method.

In Keep Calm and Flutter On, Discord started off in an identical form, though with a proverbial gun to his head: if he misbehaves, he goes back to being imprisoned. What Fluttershy did was to take away this threatening situation, temporarily at first by letting Discord make himself at him inside her cottage, and then more permanently when she promised not to use her Element against him. She treated him with patience and tolerance, asking things of him rather demanding. Once she called Discord her friend at the dinner party, he realized how differently she had been treating him. At Sweet Apple Acres, when Discord froze the water, he was thinking only of only the fun that could be had and not the disruption it would cause to those around him, something that would be considered 'childish' by almost anyone. I feel an impossibly important and subtle note was that when he offered Fluttershy the skates, he did it as an activity two friends could do together to have fun. When he finally realized how his actions upset Fluttershy, and finally realized how he was about to lose his only friend, Discord gained the understanding of compassion and empathy. Discord was able to see how his shenanigans directly affected the ponies around him.

In this way, I feel Discord did not turn from evil to good. I would not even say that Discord was ever truly evil, simply immature and unable to truly grasp the impact of his actions. A child does what it does because it is fun for whatever reason. Once you teach a child to think about how his/her actions and how they will affect others, that child is more likely to act restrained and more composed. Discord is still the same chaos-loving draconequus that he will always be, but I feel as though draconequus, like ponies and people, are social creatures that seek the acceptance of their peers.

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