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Fashion Victim

These reviews do contain spoilers. Read on at your own discretion.

I mentioned not too long ago in my Fame and Misfortune review how Fluttershy has changed over the course of the show. At one time, she constantly had to learn again and again to be assertive, but around season 4, that all started to change. So with all that growth and character development, it was time for Fluttershy to move onto doing something else; channeling her inner strength. Yes, to an extent, it's like being assertive again, but just reworded I guess. But anyway, Fluttershy has to do this at Rarity's Manehatten shop, Rarity for You.

While I'm not against seeing Fluttershy show off her assertiveness, this episode sounded similar to something we've already seen before. If you recall the episode Putting Your Hoof Down, Fluttershy learned to be far more assertive and didn't realize she was going overboard until it was nearly too late. So we got ourselves another episode attempting to redo another episode that's often considered bad. How does it hold up? Well, let's just put it this way, people; it's slightly better than PYHD. Very, very, slightly.

Rarity is leaving for a fashion show in Canterlot, but when all her other friends are unable to help, she turns to Fluttershy to look over the shop until she gets back. At first, Fluttershy seems reluctant, but she soon develops a way to talk and interact with the customers. She at first is successful, but her acts soon start to get out of hand, and it's up to Rarity and her friends to get their old friend back.

So one of the first questions you may be asking yourself about this premise is this. Where is Coco Pommel? Why isn't she looking over the shop? Well, that's a good question because Coco is never mentioned in the episode at all, and there's no explanation as to why she's not available. They could've easily filled in this plot hole by saying she was sick again, or even she was looking over the Canterlot shop while everyone else was busy. I'm not sure why they failed to mention Coco when she was clearly the best choice for the job. One other pony who was part of Rarity's Manehatten shop that's also missing is Plaid Stripes. I'm not complaining about that though. Plaid was ultimately a waste of time, and I guess Rarity finally found a way to ditch that annoying pony. Hey, whatever finally gets rid of her is fine with me.

So Fluttershy is chosen to run the shop and is given a tour of the place. And here we run into a problem I had with in Honest Apple. After Fluttershy is left intimidated by a customer, Rarity steps in to save her. This should've prompted Rarity to ask if Fluttershy was going to be alright to take on the challenge, but she instead decides to just leave Fluttershy to fend for herself. Much like with Honest Apple, Rarity seems to have chosen poorly for helping with something involving fashion.

Now you may think that may not be true because Fluttershy does have knowledge of fashion, right? Wrong! Fluttershy apparently doesn't know really anything about fashion at all. Sure, some of the questions asked like thread count is obscure and how anyone can count that many threads is beyond me. But we've seen Fluttershy have knowledge of fashion as far back as season one. She's good at sewing and gave specific directions to Rarity about her dress. Hell, she was fashion model for a while, and now suddenly she's completely forgotten almost all she knew about it?

To be fair, Fluttershy isn't a retail salespony and lacks knowledge about it. So maybe to an extent she was already over her head about taking on the job. She probably was afraid how to handle all different kinds of people. Having years of salesmanship myself, I can relate to her about being nervous about trying to approach customers to help them and answer their questions.

As mentioned before, Fluttershy developed a way to handle the customers. She does so by becoming three different personalities. A snooty pony who kind of seems to act a bit like Rarity except more cold. A hipster like pony who's more like a valley girl. Then a gothic pony to make her depressing and sad. One thing I'll definitely say to this episode's favor is that these personalities can be fun, and they are very enjoyable. Fluttershy does a great job handling so many different personalities and acting so different. Who knew Fluttershy was such a talented actress? Maybe instead of just teaching kindness at the Friendship School, she can teach Drama class to the students. She'd be perfect.

However, just like in Putting Your Hoof Down, things go sour for everypony as Fluttershy's own assertiveness and multiple personalities end up alienating and pushing both her friends and the customers away. This calls for an intervention by all of Fluttershy's friends, who end up being grilled by each of Fluttershy's personalties. Even to the point of calling her animal friends rodents and throwing her friends out. This does cause a major problem down the road which I'll get to in a moment.

To make a long story short, Rarity is eventually told what Fluttershy is doing, and they all go back to confront her about what she's done. Seeing no other choice in the matter, Rarity decides to fire Fluttershy...three times at least. She fires each of Fluttershy's own personalities. Then, suddenly, the old Fluttershy reappears out of the blue. She offers her aplologies about how she acted and explained that she wanted to try to impress the clients by acting like one of the Saddle Row ponies.

And this is where the episode really loses me now. A common thing I've noticed is people say Fluttershy was lost in character with how she was acting. Remember that issue I had with how Fluttershy treated her friends? This is where that problem really makes itself known. Fluttershy asks the raccoons if they knew she was just pretending to be cruel to them and call them rodents. This heavily implies Fluttershy knew she was being overly assertive without stopping to reconsider her actions. She knew how much of a jerk she was being to all her friends and how awful she was being. It's made worse when you consider that Fluttershy was also equally rude to the customers; despite her claim that she was trying to imitate them.

The ending has a very rushed feeling to it with a resolution that feels rather contrived. It's like the team realized they were out of time and had to quickly come up with some ending to try to resolve everything. I honestly think this ending should've involved everypony walking out on Fluttershy, she's left alone with nopony to talk to and help. The customers avoid the shop because of how awful she's been. It would've made Fluttershy slowly realize what a terrible pony she was and decide to finally break away from all her characters and vow to make things right. All they had to do was cut down on some of Fluttershy's antics and they probably could've fit that in.

I get the message was trying to be not to forget who you truly are, and not pretend to be something you aren't. However, we did have a message like that in Sweet and Elite, and it handled that kind of moral better. Here, it feels like it was kind of tacked on, and it feels like Fluttershy didn't really learn her lesson properly. I wouldn't say it's as bad as Scare Master's cop out ending, but this one definitely didn't do it for me.

It's a real shame I have to say about Fake it Til You Make it is so underwhelming. Admittedly, the first act and part of the second act of the episode has its great moments. The personas were great for the most part, the comedy seemed solid, and it had some fun moments of Fluttershy giving it her all. However, as soon as Fluttershy tells the raccoons off, it all starts falling apart.

The story is filled with plot holes and inconsistencies from the lack of Coco Pommel being in this episode, to why Fluttershy lacks any knowledge of fashion all of a sudden. I find it hard to believe Fluttershy would not only continue to be a complete jerk to everyone and then when her personalities were fired, she just reverts instantly back to her old self like that. She was clearly self aware she was being a jerk to the raccoons and the clients, and never really stopped to consider it. It's not helped that when she asked the raccoons if they knew she pretending that she knew how far she went, and didn't stop to consider it.

In addition, the ending itself feels very rushed with no feeling of resolution. While Putting Your Hoof Down did have its problems, it involved Fluttershy learning to not be too assertive and seemed to learn her lesson well. In this episode, Fluttershy doesn't seem to learn her lesson properly. All that happens is that she gets all three personas end up being fired, and then just comes back as her old self out of the blue. There's really no feeling of resolution in this episode, and it feels like this ending was put together at the final second.

This episode is a massive mixed bag from me. It has good ideas in it, but it's mired in all the massive plot holes and inconsistencies. As boring as last week's episode was, it at least had something going for itself and didn't feel forced plot points or contrivances, and it was really Mud Briar who was the real problem. The comedy is great and the personas are fine, but this episode definitely falls flat on many levels and I consider it to be a step down from last week's episode.

I think this episode really highlights a problem Fluttershy episodes have had lately. In the past, it was about trying to make her assertive. Now it seems they may be making her too assertive, and try to make her focus on being more kind and like how she was before. I'm not sure why this delicate balance for Fluttershy seems to be hard lately, but it seems to be a growing problem. Let's just hope this doesn't get any worse for our favorite animal loving pegasus.

FINAL SCORE: 6.5 out of 10 (C+)


Season eight episodes ranking from best to worse:

School Daze
The Maud Couple
Fake it Til You Make it (NEW)
Critic consensus: While it has its moments, the comedy is solid, and the personas of Fluttershy are good, Fake it Til You Make it is riddled with massive plot holes and inconsistencies that will make you struggle to make it through once, but not watch again.

Tagline: "In which we see Fluttershy's true calling; being an actress."
Add a Comment:
 
:icondbzfan12:
DBZFan12 Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
So, this episode is an alternate take on Green Isn't Your Color?
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:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner 5 days ago
Not really. It does have the Putting Your Hoof Down vibes.
Reply
:icondbzfan12:
DBZFan12 Featured By Owner 5 days ago  Hobbyist Writer
Really? It seems more like Green Isn't Your Color to me.
Reply
:icontheamazingpeanuts:
Well the episode isn't too bad, I did like the personalities Fluttershy is doing, especially the goth one and it did have some funny moments. But like you said, the episode could be better.
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner 5 days ago
Definitely. They should've at least done a better job on the ending.
Reply
:iconfuntime1997:
Funtime1997 Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2018
I did admit that I liked the personalities almost reminded me of Mick Foley.  
Reply
:iconfuntime1997:
Funtime1997 Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2018
This is perhaps Putting Your Hoof Down on Steroids I gave it a 3 out of 10.  It only escapes beings worse, because I actually kinda liked the multiple personalities.  
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2018
I feel it was trying to improve so much of that episode, but created its own problems.
Reply
:iconfuntime1997:
Funtime1997 Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2018
I guess you agree with my rating of a 3 out of 10.
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2018
I can understand the problems. The original PYHD I would rate as 5.5 or 6 out of 10; mediocre at best.
Reply
:icon13mcjunkinm:
13mcjunkinm Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Wow. U made some good points. I forgot about Coco and plaid stripes.

Honestly Josh Hamilton is IMO a mediocre writor for MLP. It does show that G4 is dead.
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2018
I don't mind Hamilton. He did good on Parental Glideance. This was his first major miss for me.
Reply
:icon13mcjunkinm:
13mcjunkinm Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I just find Parental Glideance overrated, I don’t like Triple threat(felt like another Spike torture porn) and found secrets and Pies below meh.
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2018
I liked Triple Threat. I didn't feel like it was Spike torture to be honest. It was mostly Spike overreacting for little reason. I think the episode could've benefited if Twilight and Starlight tried to reassure Spike instead of going along with his crazy scheme. I did find Secrets and Pies mediocre as well.
Reply
:iconbigsims3030:
BigSims3030 Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2018
Damn. I didn't even think about Coco Pommel while watching this episode. Good point. 
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2018
Thanks.
Reply
:iconmorion87:
morion87 Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2018
More evidence for me that G4, is basically dead. But Hasbro refuses to let it die. A lot of the plot holes feel like lazy as f**k writting.

Could be me though. Though at this point I'm barely watching MLP anymore. So maybe it is that.
Reply
:iconthedragonwarlock:
TheDragonWarlock Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2018
Well, G4 is going away soon. No denying it's going to eventually be put to rest.
Reply
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