Archive for the ‘My Little Pony- Reviews’ Category

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Rainbow DAAAAASH!

 

So this episode did a whole lot to develop the outside world more! Just like on the map of Equestria you can probably see somewhere… Rainbow Falls is a place we visited before (or atleast a place that’s very similar) within the episode “Sleepless in Ponyville”. So I thought that was a neat little snapshot of what the show can do with its continuity in the world of Equestria.

Apart from that, we got a highly entertaining episode that expands on the world of the more background characters. For example, we got voices for various characters we never heard before. Such as the famed “Steroid Pony” named appropriately “Bulk Biceps”, as well as the third member of the wonderbolts team and various other characters. We also got to see gryphons in the competition! Cool!

This episode revolved around Rainbow Dash trying to get into the Equestria Games… which is an understandable device, as well as continuation on the more background story behind season five. I’m guessing the actual Equestria Games will be held later on? Yes… definitely.

Every character was resoundingly IN character, as well as the writers wanton to include everyone in every episode… which is either good or bad for some. For me, it really doesn’t matter, as long as it doesn’t intrude on the more character developing scenes.

Thankfully, the one scene with emotional significance in this episode was played out near perfectly. As Dash found out (once again) how much her friends truly love her, and how much she truly loves her friends. Which is actually really true, since the heat of competition can sometimes cloud such thoughts.

Overall, it was a success in terms of an episode… as I’ve said, I really can’t scream and shout at this show. Because for how much the fandom around it is trying to make it out to be more than it is, in the end, it’s just a very good cartoon show that does what it does much better than other cartoon shows. I watch this show like I watch a good children’s entertainment, with my mind half shut, and laughing at the simplistic humor and the shockingly well-developed characters. G’day.

Grade: A-

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They’re cousins!!!Right…?

 

Splendid, just splendid. I was never really sure this show would really DO a road trip episode… really, I thought that was a trope they’d never stray to! And if they did, then it’d involve the entire cast, not just two of the main characters. Well… they went there! And it was a lot of fun!

An episode like this, one rife with physical humor and gags, as well as pop culture references with a slight hint of world development was definitely something I always love to see. A show like this is truly on a different spectrum, it’s a cartoon, and it’s supposed to be light hearted. Even for a comedy show, I find it hard to put this show down, as it has such a breezy and fast-paced attitude towards itself I can’t help but join in on the fun.

This episode is the definition of light hearted, it has a few glimpses of emotion that resonate from either Pinkie’s character, or the rest of the cast involved with the episode, but mostly it’s light-hearted fun that MAY or may not have a payoff come season wrap up (last five or six episodes).

However, until then, I’m willing to accept it for what it is. Pinkie was as she always was in this season, very excitable, energetic, and extremely random, and that formula alone provided most of the laughs in this episode. Also the dynamic between the Apple family was something that the episode as a whole benefited from. The episode also experienced with a slightly skewered and more slapstick comedic style that was a refreshing take to the somewhat similar show formula. This season is definitely spending a lot of it’s time deviating from the standard show structure we got accustomed to in the first three seasons, and that’s great news in my opinion.

I was a bit nervous, with Community’s absolutely splendid episode this week, that this episode may fall short of my expectations, but I really can’t say it did. It’s just… it’s a fun episode, with material that I can’t say resonated all that well, but it did its job in the process.

As I’ve said, a show like this is graded on a different scale. While I take shows such as Community more seriously, spending hours analyzing their in-depth and meaningful content, it’s sometimes nice to sit down and watch a show, have a great time, and then not think much of it. In a way, this show is exactly what I need after a strenuous activity, or after I’ve had a rough day. A healthy dose of colorful ponies, on a road trip together, having a blast.

There isn’t much more I can properly ask of this show!

Grade: A-

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Hey guys! Have you heard?! Rarity is GENEROUS!

 

The reason I say that, is because this episode decided to truly hammer in that fact. “Hey look, the element of generosity… IS GENEROUS!” Who knew?! I know I did!

This is the main aspect of the episode which I couldn’t help but cringe at, every time it was brought up I told myself “yes… I know… how about some subtlety for a change?” But honestly, apart from that main gripe, the entire episode was filled to the brim with hilariousness.

I can go on and on about how well the writers are portrayed Rainbow Dash. The once cocky, abrasive, and annoying character has truly become a fantastic one. She is, hands down, the best developed character of the show, and every episodes seems to reinforce that. The best part is the fact that she still stays IN character, it’s not like she had some drastic change in her personality or anything. The growth seemed natural.

Now, let’s talk about the bell of the ball, Rarity, whom has been lacking an episode for quite a bit has her season four debut, and succeeds with flying colors. Apart from that one flaw, this episode was generally quite accurate in her depiction. And I’d be lying if I said I didn’t absolutely love the voice actress who plays her oh so well… Tabitha St.Germain (her voice actress) has a stunning talent for depicting emotion, and Rarity, being the most…hmm… how do I say? Eccentric, character, fits perfectly with the voice actress.

Rarity’s breakdown this episode was once again, something to marvel at. Each line was delivered with passion and sincerity, and it really did succeed. Even the other characters had a decent amount to do in the episode. “Rarity takes Manehattan” seemed like the first episode where the entire cast was UNDERSTANDABLY there, as I can completely believe that a group of friends visiting a foreign city is something that occurs.

While the background characters were played well, and the guest stars were entertaining… there was a feeling of slight blunt exposition. Which is something that is understandable with this shows demographic, but still felt somewhat out of place. For example, when Suri Polomare, whom was portrayed as the antagonist, lied to Rarity about Rarity’s loss in the talent show… then quite literally told her assistant she lied, was something that was not necessary. It was a waste of space exposition line that garnered to the younger demographic, and as I said, it’s understandable, but the show DID fair well without that device in past episodes.

Dave Polsky, the writer of this episode, really did his job in portrayed the characters well. He has always been a machine for fun character humor, and this episode definitely shows his talent with writing character based jokes. From Rainbow Dashes deliveries, to Pinkies hyper-ness, each character seemed to be acting as if they are just filled to the brim with well-delivered humor.

The twist ending definitely seems like a pattern in this season, and my theory of them leading up to a climactic finale definitely seems like it is heading to fruition… I’m not too sure about this ‘twist’ ending, if I can even call it that, but it was still something else this show included.

This season is definitely different, I will say it is for the better, some say it is for the worse. All we can do is wait, and watch these great episodes as they come!

Grade: A-

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NOT THE BEEEE-… BAAAATS!!!

 

If I’m honest, this episode gets better and better the more I rewatch it. I ADORE this episode, from the fantastic themes to the overwhelmingly hilarious dialogue to the beautiful set-pieces. This was yet another classic springing up from the fourth season, a season I think is majorly positive so far.

Today we get to see BATS! An episode that lives up to its name, as not only do we get to see apple-sucking vampire bats, but we also get to see a beloved character transform into a bat as well. Equipped with fangs and insanely fluffy ears, Fluttershy did not hesitate to once again make this episode stand out. In fact, all the characters got a brilliant amount of screen time for an episode that seemed like it would be revolving around Applejack.

The only visible fault was the characters acting a wee bit out of character in ONE scene, which is forgivable since the rest of this episode was pure joy. The particularly impressive aspect of this episode was the brilliant artistic direction it was taken in. Having a very “Nightmare before Christmas” vibe to it, this episode had beautiful details implanted in it. From the smooth transitions between filters, to the panning of the “camera” this episode definitely stood out as this shows most technologically proficient episode. One that I will definitely say was a “Halloween-episode”.

Just like in a few previous episodes, this one continued this season’s trend of leaving of the episode with a little cliffhanger. I hope there is a valuable payoff to this, as I think it has the opportunity to create one of the best season finales to date.

The designs of the bats in this episode was another fantastic addition, as they weren’t some overly-cute creature, in fact, they were something I’d see from some of the “boy” cartoons out there (ugh, I hate saying things like this, but it’s a comparison I drew nonetheless).

The scenery was also delightfully spooky, as they ditched the rose-colored backgrounds for a darker pallet and filter, making it a true homage. I feel like this episode was more of a concept and execution than Power Ponies, the shows previous installment, as it has a more visible theme to it. It executes it with style and talent, and the voice actresses really seemed to be enjoying themselves.

I’ll say it again, I think this not only is perhaps the best episode of the season, but one of my favorite episodes of this show to date!

 

Grade: A

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Power ponies HOOOO!

 

In this week’s installment of MLP: FIM, we see what is thought to be the very first concept episode of the show, and in a sense, it is. However, it does have a few flaws that sets it back from being amazing.

Let me just say, like it or not, this episode will definitely be remembered as it is a massive departure from the norm of the show. We have the characters being transported into a comic universe to pretty much “finish” the story, and defeat the Mane-iac… yes… yes… two “mane” puns this season so far!

The episode is pretty much surrounded around Spike, whom is Twilight sparkles little baby dragon assistant. And he, as hinted at in the beginning of the episode, gets turned into the “comic relief” sidekick whom is fairly incompetent. Half of me felt that the show was poking fun of the way they have been treating spike these past few episodes… and I guess this is sort of their “hey look, we are fixing it!” episode.

That’s a bit disappointing in the sense that they should not have an episode like this focus on one specific character, but instead on the fun aspects. I couldn’t care less whether spike is feeling down when the entire city is at risk!

But, nevertheless, they focus on spike trying to be competent. I’m just glad they didn’t completely make him dominate the episode, and act as sort of the “hound master” releasing the superheroes from their cages and letting them beat up the villians.

The best moment in this episode stemmed from the pure physical gag that is Fluttershy turning into a hulk, and beating up the giant hairdryer weapon of mass destruction. This made me cry from laughter, and was most definitely the highlight.

Apart from that, most of the humor was physical, instead of referential or anything… which is and understandable and silly place to take a show which need not stray from its target demographic. I’d of still loved to see some more superhero references, but who knows, maybe I’m just missing a lot!

Let me just say that this episode was not bad, it wasn’t even mediocre, it was actually very good! It did not have squandered potential like last week’s episode, so it was automatically a step ahead for me, entertainment wise.

Sure it was somewhat rushed, and not as well told… but it was simply more fun. I still find a “fun only” episode like ‘Daring Don’t’ to be better, but this one still held its ground. We some nice action, great dialogue, splendid voice acting from the psychotic villain, and the unexpected use of the word “dementia” in a children’s show! (I was actually REALLY surprised by this!)

Overall, it was a worthy and solid installment of this TV-Show, only hindered by a few pacing flaws and an unnecessary focus on a character that majorly detracted from the “epic” feel this episode tried to provide. I can’t complain though, we had ponies dressed up as superheroes!

 

Grade: B

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Welcome to the Equestria gaaaaames!

 

So I’ve heard rumors about this episode, how it is supposed to be controversial or whatever… and I just don’t see it. The big flaw in this episode can of course be scrutinized to no end, as it’s not just a writing error, it’s a full blown moral and ethical disgrace. I do plan to address it, however, to a lesser extent than what I originally wanted.

This episode revolved around the lovable cutie mark crusaders, who are just as adorable as always. However, when compared to the previous fantastic installments of the show, this episode falls flat. However, it did have sparks of ingenuity and hilarity sprinkled throughout.

This episode was fairly high on the humor, so that is what it excelled at, however, it did have a small not-so-impactful emotional moment at the very end. We got to see the return of a small character from the previous seasons “Games Ponies Play” episode, Ms.Harshwhinney, which was… alright? I mean, she is not a memorable character by any stretch of the imagination, and has just as small of a role as her debut, so I really don’t have much to say about her.

We did have some great gags involving Rainbow Dash, with her trying to be calm. However, the entire episode was very predictable, almost as if it was hilariously meant to be predictable. This show was pretty adept at surprising me, it usually has a few non-cliché tricks up its sleeve. But this episode seemed to ditch those in favor of… nothing in particular.

Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon, arguably the most frustratingly terribly written characters in the show, make another appearance just to bully a child whom seems to be disabled. And to top off the cherry on this crap-cake, they didn’t even get punished! It’s arguable that the CMC just didn’t tell any adults of the bullying… but this is a cartoon show, it’s supposed to teach action and consequence, and this was a god-awful way of teaching children not too bully.

But… thankfully the rest of the episode was very enjoyable, it had me laughing and “aww”-ing at the adorable CMC doing their adorable things.

In general, the pacing was pretty good in this episode, it was consistently moving forward, never stalling for too long. However, the final five minutes seemed to be totally rushed, as if the show runners needed to cut it just to fit the timeframe this series needs to have (twenty two minutes about).

Overall, this was seemingly a filler episode. Which was slightly disappointing because it could have been so much more, because Scootaloo is my favorite CMC and they could have taken her to new heights with the character development they SHOULD have added. Apart from that flawed bullying aspect, this episode was majorly entertaining, providing many laughs. Next week we have “Power Ponies”… uh oh, I sense something special!

P.S- So… IS Scootaloo disabled? They really should have addressed this…

-ALSO, can’t they just get their cutie marks already?!

 

Grade: B-

 

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I’m your BIGGEST fan!

 

Today we witness yet another excellent departure for the series, one that explores areas of Equestria we weren’t aware of, as well as expanding on previously introduced characters in a way that I more than welcome. Right after the first sentence you can tell that this is yet another episode that succeeded in entertaining me to no end.

Firstly, we have Rainbow Dash being completely adorable as the massive “Daring do book” fangirl. I’ve always said that this is my favorite version of her, one that is capable of being super dorky yet maintain an image. It’s interesting, cute, and best of all, character strengthening. All of this with the fantastic Aztec mythology references, and a fast yet oddly paced episode, provided for an entertaining thrill ride.

The introduction of Daring-Do as the “lone-ranger” esq character was an interesting choice that I liked. Her entire character was memorable, and a somewhat realistic portrayal of what I imagined Daring Do to be like. However, Dash following her around was a little odd at first, but it ended up picking up pace with the introduction of Ahuizotle, the seemingly ongoing villain in the Daring Do books.

This, with the perfect blend of action and adventure provided for an exhilarating second act. Having Daring Do quite literally kick butt was exhilarating, and we got to see a lot of that. The gang, whom was there to save Daring Do, was mostly under-utilized, but for an understandable reason. This episode was extremely fast paced, almost begging for screen time. I could have seen this being spread out into a two-parter and still succeeding with flying colors.

Rainbow dash, although not truly developing within this episode, still manages to be an extremely likable character. Instead of being arrogant to the point of “face pain”, she instead was convincing herself of her own “awesomeness” just so she could face her hero. This was a heartwarming and interesting take on her character that I welcome with open arms.

I was happy to see this storyline being told, mostly due to the fact that I was a huge fan of the “Daring Do Book’s” introductory episode as well, “Read it and Weep”. Once again, this series proves that it is still not on a decline, rather on an incline still, showing that it can pull out fresh ideas and interesting episodes almost every single episode it puts out.

In the end, it was a worthy installment of this show. It was visually appealing, hilarious, and best of all, extremely entertaining. Hopefully this show keeps it’s pace, because so far it’s shaping up to be a wild ride!

P.S- What’s up with Dash creating some of the most nightmare-fuel faces I’ve ever seen?!

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Grade: A-

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Well, well, well! From good, to amazing! This has to be yet another classic for this cartoon show! Just like “Lesson zero”, “Party of one”, and “Sleepless in Ponyville”, the recent episode Castle Mane-ia treads in new waters, and just like the episodes above, it succeeds in almost every way. Let me just say, right off the bat, this has to be my favorite episode since “Sleepless in Ponyville”.

So let’s get started. Twilight Sparkle is trying to find the keys needed for the secret locked box (WHAT’S IN THE BOX?!) that was revealed in the season premier, Celestia sends her to her old palace and… hijinks comes! One of the only nitpicky thing I can mention about this episode, is that the ONE cliché that they did not succeed in, is providing a convincing reason for the mane 6 to find their way to the same exact castle that Twilight is searching with Spike.

However, all of them are in there, each one in understandable pairs (Dash with Applejack), and the place seems sort of odd and scary. Applejack explains some sort of ghost story, and soon enough so many odd things are happening that it is hard to follow. Hard to follow, mostly due to the brilliant laugh-fits you are sure to be experiencing.

Every cliché that is utilized in this episode is used for comedic effect, everything from scoobie-do episodes, to more modern clichés, we see them all. I was having a ball noticing all of them, and laughing at them as the colorful, cute ponies of Equestria trek around this dangerous place. Of course, in the typical cartoon-horror fashion, they all find each other and they realize that the haunting was just Pinkie playing a rigged pipe organ. And in typical (and hilarious) fashion, they all shake their heads and yell out “Pinkie!” as if it’s a recurring thing.

I don’t think it’s hard to tell that I absolutely loved this episode, everything from its unexpected and less-childish nature, to its wall-to-wall action and comedic timing. Subtle things like the unknown interacting Rarity gets to have with dash (through a glory hole in the wall, it seems), make this all the better. And the fact that it is revealed that there IS something haunting/living inside the castle, is even more unexplored and fascinating.

For a show like this, of course it would be Pinkie Pie causing all the drama. Maybe it’s the fact that I was loving this entire episode so much that I didn’t even bother guessing. All I know is, every single bit of comedy (From angel to fluttershy to rarity to everypony) was gold or at least silver. The pacing was fast and in your face, but not to the point where you couldn’t follow the plot either. Each character was utilized very well, receiving multiple lines of dialogue jam-packed with both references and well-timed deliveries.

All I did at the end was giggle and clap, because this was something I always want to see this show do. An episode that places the characters in a unique location, with unique dialogue and a unique story, only to end with them being even close to each other than before. Brava Castle Mane-ia, welcome to my Top 10 list!

Pros:

–          Extremely well-paced

–          A comedic use of clichés!

–          Pinkie pie being ADORABLE

–          Wall-to-wall humor!

–          Great character pairings that succeeded without a doubt

–          A unique and pretty setting to explore

–          Lest not forget brilliant voice acting!

Cons:

–          Twilight acting more like a “mother” than a character experiencing this fantastic story

–          The “Dear diary” Thing was a little forced…

Grade: A

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Hello and welcome to season 4 everyone! I’m thrilled to be here and doing these reviews of a show I’ve come to enjoy over the past few months. But, I don’t plan to keep the introduction long, let’s jump right into the review!

Season 4 starts with a hectic two parter that does more good than bad, in fact, I don’t have TO much to say about this episode that isn’t generally praising it for its robust and continues quality. Everything was sleek and animated wonderfully, voice acted believably, and was delightfully light-hearted in some areas, and grim in others.

The episode starts out with Twilight (seemingly both forgetting and remembering how to fly simultaneously) “learning” how to fly from her friend Rainbow Dash. It doesn’t take long for her to air her complaints about being Princess and how difficult it must be. Although the entire “we can’t spend time with you because we must help ponyville” excuse the other five friends tell Twilight is decently believable, I can’t help but groan at the forced lesson I’m sure to be treated to by the end of the episode.

The highlight of the first episode comes shortly after, however, when Celestia visits Twilight in her room and describes that the summer sun celebration is somewhat of a fresh slate for Celestia. How she wants to remember this ceremony as the return of her sister, and not the banishment of nightmare moon. The entirety of this scene was surprisingly heartwarming and felt natural. This is of course until a letter from Twilight’s friends arrives and Twilight (stupidly) ignores it for whatever reason.

Queue chaos! The everfree forest begins invading Ponyville and we soon find out that it won’t stop until the entirety of Equestria is under its leafy tentacle-ey grasp! The five other ponies try to help but it’s pretty useless, and after Twilight finds out from the hilariously voice-acted Canterlot guards that the other two princesses are missing, she fail-tastically flies over to her friends in Ponyville.

They of course bring in the seasonal guest star “Discord”, whom is brilliantly voice acted by John Delancie, and from then on the hilarity ensues. We see Zecora bring some random (seemingly out of no where) potion that conveniently needs an Alicorn to activate. Twilight drinks it, and then we get my favorite bits of the episode in sequential order.

We get a whole dollop of Princess and Equestrian lore that I just ate up. Needless to say, I loved every moment of it. We saw Luna’s transformation into nightmare moon (animated to perfection), the stunning battle between her and Celestia (surprisingly intense for a show like this), and then we saw discord stealing Celestia’s tail.

Twilight finds the special tree of harmony from where the elements came, and we get on a less-than-epic mini adventure. Here is where I can pick a serious gripe with the show. The five characters all tell Twilight to bugger off back to Ponyville, while they find the tree. And when she unwillingly accepts, they find that they are quite literally screwed without her. The five ponies are literally hopeless without their “savior” Princess Twilight Sparkle. Something I find absurd and silly as she was just as easily cornered by those perfume-spewing plants.

However, I suppose one could argue that without each other they are less-than-capable on such an adventure… but there could have been much better ways of showing that. Then the gang re-unites, and they easily stop the infestation of the black-scary-plant-tentacles.

As I said in my reaction, I believe that the third act is where the episode began slipping down and down, and it ended up with a hackneyed and downright dumb ending. The defeat of the infestation was underwhelming at best, and the entire idea of Discord “teaching her a lesson” was forced and stupid. Of course unless he has some ulterior motives, which should be interesting. May I just add that I’m surprised at how much I enjoyed his presence as sort of the “Anti-hero” of the show, it’s refreshing and fun.

We did get left off on what seemed to be a “seasonal arc” involving some random tulip-like flower sprouting from the ground and blooming in front of the ponies (and rescued princesses). A chest appears with six keys, and an obvious mystery pops up. In my opinion, we’ll be seeing an episode of each pony from where they gain one of these keys, and for the season finale we will have them open it and I’m sure something big will occur (Hopefully all of them DON’T turn into alicorns).

Overall, this episode succeeded in where it needed to. It needed to be an entertaining forty minutes of light-hearted pony goodness. It succeeded in providing the (unexpected) intensity and drama with flying colors. And the only honest missteps involve the third act being downright lazy compared to the rest. This is most definitely a good start to the season, one that I was very worried about. And I was pleasantly surprised to see the entire gang get enough screen time, and not having Twilight completely dominate the show. Make sure you stick around for more reviews to come, everyone, because if this is any indication for the rest of the season, we are still in the same good and comfortable hands that we were in previously!

 

Pros:

–          Princess Sparkle wasn’t as infuriatingly boring as I thought it was.

–          Discord makes a welcome return as the lovable anti-hero we see him as now.

–          Pinkie pie is present… that should be enough to warrant a “pro”

–          Each one of the characters got a decent amount of screentime.

–          An interesting concept for a villain in the episode.

–          Awesome princess/Equestrian lore

–          Great intensity and even sadness mixed in with decent humor

Cons:

–          Too much backtracking

–          The pacing was decent at best.

–          Unnecessary scenes that did more harm than good

–          The gang being useless without Twilight

–          The third act fumbled too much to be considered a success

–          Sonic Twi-boom? What the…?

 

Grade:

Episode 1: B+

Episode 2: B+

M.L.P Review- Season 3

Posted: November 15, 2013 in My Little Pony- Reviews
Tags:

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Welcome to my Season 3 review! I’ll start it off by posting the grades to each episode.

1.) B

2.)B+

3.)B

4.)C-

5.)A-

6.)A

7.)A-

8.)C+

9.)B-

10.)B+

11.)B-

12.)C

13.)C+

Right away you may notice that this season is pretty uneven, in some areas it shines providing episodes of stunning quality. And in other areas it stoops to an all-time low, following trendy clichés to progress a plot, and mostly just treading in the same water until the next episode.

The season highlight being “Sleepless in Ponyville” which I hailed as the best episode this show has ever done. A few honorable mentions being: “Wonderbolts Academy” and “Magic Duel”. There weren’t any inherently terrible, but they did have a lot of missteps dragging down the entire experience.

For example, the worst episode of the season (and perhaps the show) was “One bad Apple”, which trivialized bullying (not immensely, but a little), and missed a glaring opportunity. This accumulated in a below-average score and a disappointing episode.

This season also had a lot of “fluff”, it included episodes that weren’t bad, and they just weren’t as entertaining as I’m used to.

Overall, it was a disjointed and uneven experience, but a good one non-the-less. It had some fantastic episodes, and some that weren’t so fantastic. All I can do is chock it up to the shortened season (only 13 episodes) and hope that season 4 returns back into consistently good family entertainment, jam packed with references, good continuity, and great pacing.

At the end of the day, this season did its job in entertaining me. While it wasn’t up to par to lets say, Season 2, it still provided enough good episodes to keep me satisfied.

Grade: B-