Sunday, 31 March 2019

EqG Mini-review: "Spring Breakdown"

"The Discovery what app?"
Yesterday we got our latest Equestria Girls special, "Spring Breakdown", which saw our favourite humanised seven off on a cruise. This was by way of being a warm-up for Friendship is Magic S9 for me, but I know plenty of people really enjoy EqG, so here's my three-para review of Nick Confalone's latest effort. Spoilers ahoy after the break!

There was a point, a little under halfway through, at which I really wondered what I was doing watching "Spring Breakdown". The build-up was really, really slow and consisted mostly of Rainbow Dash being a prat. At times we were almost back in "Mare Do Well" territory, and it didn't make for an enjoyable few minutes. We also had the dubious pleasure of watching Applejack get seasick. While Rainbow continued to be a prat. I know from watching others' comments as the livestream progressed that plenty of people found this first half a real drag.

Thankfully, things improved a good deal in the second half. We got the long-awaited scene of Sci-Twi (and human Rainbow) visiting Equestria, for one thing, and interestingly via a very different portal from usual. There was also a sub-plot involving Rarity and a dancer boy with what seemed to be the world's worst accent (and is still painful to listen to even now I know "Ragamuffin" was faking it). The Storm King's involvement was a nice touch, the parrot reminding the celebrating girls that the ship was still sinking was funny – and the "We're back!" very last scene could easily set up a very interesting follow-up.

So, "Spring Breakers" was certainly a special of two halves. If the second half had matched the first, it would have been a cast-iron clunker, despite occasional bright spots such as Trixie's scene. If the first half had matched the second, it would have been close to "Forgotten Friendship". Instead, it's a hotch-potch. I suspect many people (possibly including me) will just watch the Equestrian stuff and the last few minutes in future. As such, a highish two-star rating seems the fairest score to give "Spring Breakdown". I doubt I'll rewatch it all the way through very often.

  • Sci-Twi finally seeing Equestria from the inside
  • The Storm King playing a part in EqG for the first time
  • That fascinating ending!
  • Inconsistent pacing that meant the first half dragged terribly
  • Ragamuffin's sub-Dick Van Dyke accent
  • Rainbow Dash being insufferable for quite some while
  • Once again, a song being cut off halfway


  1. "I suspect many people (possibly including me) will just watch the Equestrian stuff..."

    Bingo. After the first five minutes, I scrolled forward until I saw ponies in the preview box. That was fun and there were some very good lines.

    1. I dunno, you will never know true catharsis until you have experienced the full range of emotions brought about by the life and times of Touchpenny McTerribleaccent...

    2. The little bit I saw of him at the end gave me more than enough emotions, thank you very much. Truly a WTF moment.

    3. Okay, his terrible accent is an actual plot point... but there are some prices that are just too high for the payoff, and this was one.

    4. One wonders just what they were thinking.

  2. I think that's the first time I've ever seen the spelling "hotch-potch" (I'm used to "hodge-podge", pronounced as spelled, with voiced J consonant). This another UK vs. US difference?

    When it got to Ragamuffin dancing, I remember people saying in the live stream chat I was in that maybe he was supposed to be Irish, and I said I thought the Irish accent was more rhotic than his... I'm thinking the writers didn't care enough to narrow it down that much.

    1. Yep, though actually "hodge-podge" is probably more common even over here. It may be regional; I don't know for sure.

      All I can say is that I've never heard any real British, Irish or Australian person who has an accent like that. Or indeed any real person. I get that the fakeness was intentional, but it was still painful to listen to.

    2. As someone who doesn't consume much British media, that kind of makes me wonder if there are any good examples of similarly implausible American accents therein, and how we might react. I remember Emily Blunt doing such a good job as Tempest Shadow that you'd never know she wasn't from this continent, but I can't remember ever experiencing the other extreme.

    3. Well, there's always Sean Connery. Whatever the role, whatever the situation, he plays it as pure Sean Connery.

      Blunt is a dual UK/US citizen, with an American husband, which doubtless helps.

    4. The Cloptimist6 April 2019 at 04:22

      I wondered if - when this makes its way to YouTube - there might be an extended scene that padded the whole Ragamuffin subplot a little, because it didn't feel like it went anywhere, and in a most un-Confalone fashion; the obvious physical similarities between him and AJ, the truly bizarre accent, even the entire 'blue collar boy secretly longs to be a dancer' thing all felt like they were set up and then just discarded. (Seemingly in favour of more shots of Rainbow sneaking around looking for dark magic.) Though I've scarcely ever felt so relieved when it was revealed that that was, indeed, meant to be a fake accent, because otherwise it was maybe one of the bottom five VA performances of all time.

      ANYWAY. I'm not American, but I believe (and I could be wrong here!), Benedict Cumberbatch did a good job pretending to be American in both Doctor Strange and The Grinch. And in terms of Americans pretending to be Brits... I didn't know who Gwyneth Paltrow was when I saw Sliding Doors, and I assumed she was British. Meryl Streep being Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady was pretty much flawless. Renee Zellweger in Bridget Jones did very well, too.