• Episode Followup: "Sweet and Smoky"

    WeAreBorg here with the followup for a great dragon filled episode, "Sweet and Smokey". I think this epsiode really encapsulates what make MLP:FiM so great. Also, it has dragons.

    Join me below for dragons, Ember's eggs, surprise siblings, field trips, duckface, lavasports,  blushing, cooking your unborn, bongos, and did I mention dragons?

    Allow me to start by addressing the morals of the story: Don't hide behind acts of bullying to prevent from being bullied yourself. Change for the better but don't forget who you were, who you are, and who you want to become.

    Also, learn were babies come from. Your species might depend on it.

    I'm not sure what Twilight's vision of academia was but ain't no teacher lounge I've ever seen look like this. Its four times larger than most of their class rooms and only looks to seat like 11 ponies at most. Is this tax payer money being wasted?

    Anyway, what does Headmare Twilight think of Smolder wanting to miss class...for a whole week?

    Oh yeah lovin' the idea.


    I think at this point no one is surprised when a character suddenly has a sibling.

    Also, Spike has now been labelled as a Nice Guy

    So in-tune with animals, Fluttershy is a master of the Duck Face.

    The dichotomy of Equestrian and Draconian cultures as represented by their landscapes. This foreshadows the challenges facing our antagonists as they try to connect with Smolder's brother using the lessons of friendship. The rising sun represents the beginning of their difficult quest, the physical heat of the dragon lands, and also foreshadows the rising stakes as you journey to the climax of the episode.

    Or the animators really wanted to add some cool lighting effects to their portfolio.

    So this is only the second episode by Kim Beyer-Johnson. Kim's first was "Non-Compete Clause" from last season that was not exactly the pinnacle of Friendship is Magic story writing. Not to put too fine a point on it but I believe that "Non-Compete Clause" is the lowest ranking MLP episode on IMDB. The big problem from that episode if you recall was Applejack and Rainbow Dash relearning a lesson they have learned a few times before so it felt extremely out of place eight seasons in.

    Anyway, this episode is the complete opposite. It has adventure, dragons, Fluttershy being the most assertive pony, and really everything "Non-Compete Clause" lacked in believable story telling and character development canon.

    Good job Kim!

    Also, I'll touch on this in an a couple screenshots, but Spike is on Twilight levels of completing this unofficial friendship quest, with a list even!

    Equestria Daily reminds you to take rips from volcanoes responsibly.

    So Spike may seem to be at "gag me" levels of friendly but if you recall Smolder said her brother was just like him and he no doubt has a majority of Twilight's friendship lessons and curriculum burned into his brain. He think's he got his.

    Do you think the dragons bring the eggs here or do they have awkward egg laying parties with uncomfortable dragonesses? Also you may be wondering why their's no guards for the eggs but that may explain why Smolder only has one sibling. Survival of the fittest.

    How my wife looked at my son when he was in the egg. This episode has Fluttershy cuteness at max.

    "It can't answer you, its an egg." There's a joke in here about recent Alabama laws but I'm not allowed to go there.

    "Appledash?" I love how Dragonlord Ember can't remember who Fluttershy is.

    One of the best subtle adult jokes in the series with Fluttershy asking if all 200 of these eggs are hers. The idea she could have popped all these out puts a blush on her face. Fluttershy, is a dragon, not a changeling queen!

    Ember has no idea how to properly care for these eggs. Dragon land sex education is officially worse than Texas's.

    I don't always catch a character mid blink but when I do, they look like this. Really downplays the dread you should be feeling know that a generation of dragons is teetering on the edge of survival.

    Ah is Spike's favorite teen dragon bullies, Fume, Garble, the dragon formerly known as Fume, and Clump. Looks like the name Fume may have switched dragons by accident not that anyone was particularly cares I imagine.

    I bet they'll be really respectful of Spike's blanket right?

    Here we are introduced to laugh fire which is a barely controlled super heated form of dragon fire resulting in purple and blue flames.

    So now the bomb drops. Garble is Smolder's brother. Can't you see the familial resemblance? Yeah, neither can I. Maybe its more like a clutch-brother sort of situation judging by how those eggs were laid out. So many questions, not enough episodes left to answer them.

    I love how Smolder is really walking the line between her friendship lessons and dragon nature. Being a good friend to Spike and being a good sister to Smolder.

    If you ever want to know what this feels like, snort some Carolina Reaper pepper into your sinuses by mistake as you try to make a curry that you are also swimming in. It's like that. Make sure to touch your eyes too.

    Fluttershy reading one of her sappy romance novels for the eggs. At least its not 50 Shades of Hay.

    "Touchy Feely"

    If you recall from "What Lies Beneath", tea parties are one of Smolder's secret favorite things. This shows us how close she and Garble or to each other and now is no shock when he regularly opens up to her as we find out later. Also, she seems pretty open about to Spike as well.

    Little baby Spikey Wikey. This kid can't catch a break.

    Also, try saying "I will be the bigger dragon" three times fast.

    So, if dragon's don't get burned by lava and can get burned by regular dragon fire, then why do the eggs that get warmed with lava pools under the ground not get hot enough with regular dragon fire?

    Literally unwatchable. Fight me in the comments.

    Lot of references to previous shown draconic activities like lava swimming, diving, and here, lava surfing. If you recall Garble lava board of choice in "Shadow Play" was Netitus, the legendary fire-proof shield the Royal Legion, wielded by Flash Magnus.

    Fluttershy doesn't even need to go full "stare" on creatures now. Was anyone else terrified when Garble and gang started throwing the lava balls RIGHT NEXT TO FLAMABLE FLUTTERSHY?!

    Dragon Blush™ now available from Sephora.

    Oozing with kindness.

    As a parent this speaks to me on a deep level. You'd think with her claws on those eggs she could feel some sort of important temperature situation going on.

    Also, I love the parallel here of Spike catching Ember talking to eggs the way she caught Fluttershy.

    The traditional Ember-Spike head pat and hug greeting.

    Why does it take wurmling to identify the heat issues? I know Ember doesn't have an instructional manual for dragon gestation, but she is quick to confirm they should be warm.

    "Oui, oui! Baguette!" This bundle of beret, striped shirt, and scarf wearing stereotypes screams in your face. Really drives this point home. The stone bongos look pretty cool though.

    Ember is mad. You would be too if all your eggs weren't going to hatch. Not that they're her eggs to be clear.

    Fluttershy laying down a sick beat. Did I just date myself?

    This is great moment in the episode where, just like Smolder, Fluttershy is there to help Garble but at the same time defends Spike. The real friendship is learning to walk this line.

    Looks like several of those nests won't be hatching. Omelettes for all!

    Does this count as dabbing?

    Okay yeah so they can walk around to other nests I guess. Fluttershy is going to smell like ash and burnt fur for like a month.

    Also if dragon eggs need this much heat to hatch does that mean the spell Twilight was attempting to preform when she hatched Spike was a simple heat spell? Obviously her super white-eyed Sonic Rainboom induced magic had some growth/transformation properties instead but it if hatching was the idea, and they hatch under heat, seems like she was trying to make her magic as hot as dragon fire.

    What a wonderfully safe thing to ask a magic kindergartner to do.

    Look at all the adorable baby dragons who are on fire.

    So at this point does Ember become a nanny for all these hatchlings? Does she alone need to regurgitate some food into their mouths like baby birds?

    In a way it's kinda messed up that its the dragons' making fun of Garble that saved the eggs but then they are immediately chastised for making fun of Garble. Of course someone could have done some stand up comedy and Garble's way was just the fastest, but maybe also congratulate the group on a team effort of saving all the eggs which was clearly more important than a single dragons feelings.

    Lessons learned right guys? Don't hide yourself behind bullying and don't empty the lava lake keeping your nursery warm.

    As I mentioned before, this episode is really the polar opposite of "Non-Compete Clause" in terms of character development canon. What's great about this final shot is the call back to the first episode of the series, when Twilight first meets Fluttershy who can't even mumble her mane loud enough to hear, but then breaks out of her shell when she sees Spike, a baby dragon.

    Your voice actors every pony.

    I hope you enjoyed this episode as much as I did. I've been waiting seasons to snag a great dragon based episode. So sorry the followup was late. Let me know what you thought about the episode in  comments below!