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Suited for Success

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Suited for Success
Season 1, Episode 14
Ideea
Air date February 4th, 2011
Written by Charlotte Fullerton
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Suited For Success is the 14th episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. It aired on February 4th, 2011 on Hub.

Summary

The episode begins with a shot of the Carousel Boutique, which cuts to Rarity levitating a dress illustration and telling Opalescence about her "stunning new gown" for The Grand Galloping Gala in Canterlot. She begins sewing it and makes Opal reluctantly help her.

There's a knock on the door and Twilight Sparkle and Applejack enter, interrupting Rarity's concentration, but she suppresses her irritation and asks if she can help them. Twilight asks her to fix a button on her dress for the Gala; it is one of the dresses Rarity puts on Twilight in the first episode, and one of the dresses Rarity throws behind a curtain in the park in Green Isn't Your Color.

Rarity insists on making Twilight a new dress instead, and then offers to spruce up Applejack's "work duds" as well. Rainbow Dash comes crashing into the room from above and knocks over some mannequins. Rarity exclaims, "I-de-a!" in a sing-song voice and offers to make Rainbow, Pinkie Pie, and Fluttershy dresses for the Gala too, and then hold a fashion show with their new dresses. Applejack questions whether Rarity can handle the workload, but Rarity laughs at the idea. The scene cross-fades to the musical number, Rarity's Dressmaking Song, which is a direct homage to Stephen Sondheim's song Putting It Together from the musical Sunday In The Park With George.

The musical number shows Rarity making the dresses for her friends. She sings Art Of The Dress and describes the concept behind each dress while she makes them. After the musical number, Rarity leads her friends into the boutique with eyes closed, then shows them their new outfits. She proudly describes how each dress matches the pony it's for, and asks "aren't they all amazing?" The ponies stand awkwardly in silence, then struggle for words; Applejack notes "they sure are... something", Twilight agrees "Yes, something!", Pinkie Pie says "I love something. Something's my favorite" with an awkward smile, and Fluttershy sadly says "It's... nice." Pinkie Pie's line echoes the line "I love smiling. Smiling's my favorite." from the film Elf. Rainbow Dash says "Mine is just not as cool as i was imagining." Rarity presses the ponies for their honest opinion, and they all agree that the dresses aren't what they had in mind. Rarity overcomes the disparaging reception and resolves to re-do the dresses: "I want you to think they're absolutely perfect." After the ponies leave, Rarity wonders aloud, "What have I gotten myself into?"

The Gala dresses designed by Rarity appear again in several episodes. They are worn for the Gala in The Best Night Ever, and feature briefly in the background in Green Isn't Your Color and A Bird in the Hoof.

Fluttershy enters the boutique and Rarity shows her her new new gown. The scene cross-fades to Fluttershy in front of a mirror wearing the dress, and she tries to placate Rarity by saying she loves it, but Rarity doesn't buy it and pressures Fluttershy into telling her what she really thinks. Fluttershy goes off into a stream of intricate complaints about the sewing and the fabric, which leaves Rarity with her jaw dropped. Fluttershy uses several terms originating in French: Toile is a cheap cloth used by designers to test a pattern; Prêt-à-porter refers to "ready to wear" clothing, while haute couture refers to custom-made clothing. The scene cross-fades into a reprise of Rarity's Dressmaking Song, where each pony gives their input about the dress Rarity sews them. Rarity repeats the lyrics "Art of the Dress", though frustrated and exhausted this time. Twilight requests technically accurate constellations; Pinkie Pie requests lollipops, balloons, candy, and streamers; Fluttershy requests French haute couture; Applejack requests galoshes; and Rainbow Dash gives the vague request "it needs to be about 20% cooler." At the conclusion of the song, Rarity tells Opal that these are the ugliest dresses she's ever made. To make matters worse, she has no time left to make her own dress.

Rarity presents the dresses to her friends, and they all happily proclaim they're exactly what they asked for. Spike arrives at the door, panting, and excitedly reports that he happened to mention Rarity's fashion show to Hoity Toity, which Twilight identifies as "the bigwig fashion hotshot in Canterlot", and that Hoity Toity is coming to Ponyville from Canterlot to see Rarity's work. Rarity shrinks in horror at the thought that Hoity Toity will see the dresses her friends helped design.

At the fashion show, Rarity peeks from behind the curtain and spots Hoity Toity. Hoity Toity bears a strong resemblance to Karl Lagerfeld, head designer and creative director for the Chanel fashion house. Rarity breathes heavily and tells herself to relax, and that her friends like the outfits and so will Hoity Toity. She shrieks in panic when the lights dim, before realizing it means the show is starting. The show's DJ, DJ Pon-3, puts on a record, and Spike narrates the show. He announces the "breathtaking designs of Ponyville's very own... Rarity." The ponies step onto the catwalk in their dresses and come to stand on a rotating platform. The crowd responds negatively, and Rarity's friends realize they overdid the dresses' design. Hoity Toity declares the dresses "amateurish", "a piled-on mishmash of everything but the kitchen sink" (with a kitchen sink being pushed out of view by Rarity), "a travesty", "the ugliest things [he's] ever seen", "horrors", and "wasting [his] valuable time." Spike, still excited for Rarity, asks her to come out and take a bow. She walks out with her eyes lowered, and the scene fades to the whispers of the crowd and the awkward smiles of Rarity's friends on stage. In Hoity Toity's review of the dresses, his remark "everything but the kitchen sink" is an idiom meaning a lot of different things, most of which are unnecessary.

The final appearance of Pinkie Pie's dress doesn't match her requests of Rarity: while Rarity is uneasy at Pinkie Pie's request for lollipops, lollipops end up on the final dress to be worn by Pinkie Pie and on the first dress she designed, but they do not appear on the dress that Pinkie Pie helps design. Despite Pinkie Pie strong-arming Rarity into putting streamers on her dress, they too do not appear on it.

The headdress for Rainbow Dash's second dress resembles the shape of the helmet of the comic book character "The Rocketeer".


The next scene begins with Rarity's friends at her door. Pinkie Pie knocks and asks "Rarity, you okay in there? You haven't come out for days." Rarity goes on a dramatic monologue:

"I'm never coming out! I can't show my face in Ponyville ever again! I used to be somepony... I used to be respected... I made dresses - beautiful, beautiful dresses! But now, everypony is laughing at me! I'm nothing but a laughing stock!"

Twilight tries to coax her out, but she replies "Leave me alone! I vaunt to be alone" with an Eastern European accent, echoing the famous phrase associated with Greta Garbo. The ponies try to figure out what to do, and Twilight spies Rarity's unfinished dress through the keyhole.

The scene fades to Rarity in her room in front of a mirror in a robe and slippers, contemplating exile. She says "Where would I go? And what would I pack?", echoing the line from the 1939 classic film Gone With The Wind, "Where shall I go? What shall I do?" said by the character Scarlett O'Hara. Rarity's contemplations are interrupted by Opal's mewling. She searches for the origin of the noise out the window, and sees Opal distressed and shivering, stuck on a tree branch. She shouts "Mommy's coming!" Rarity runs out to rescue her, and finds Rainbow Dash next to Opal, and chides her for stranding Opal on the tree. Dash points her attention to the dress that Rarity's friends finished for her, "thanks to Fluttershy's freaky knowledge of sewing", according to Applejack. Rarity says she doesn't like it, she loves it. Fluttershy notes that they "just followed [her] brilliant design", and the ponies apologize for rejecting Rarity's original designs. Rarity forgives them, but still goes on a dramatic outburst about her career being ruined. Fortunately, Hoity Toity agrees to attend the revised fashion show at Rarity's boutique.

Hoity Toity declares "Take #2," Spike closes the curtains, and Rarity puts up a magic light show, which begins with a brief musical sound-alike segment for Also sprach Zarathustra. Stylized animated backdrops accompany each dress presentation, and Hoity Toity expresses his amazement at the designs, calling them "simply magnificent", "brilliant", "spectacular", and "absolutely amazing." He demands that the pony responsible show themselves, and claps at the conclusion of the show. Rarity thanks him, and the scene cross-fades to Twilight dictating her friendship report to Spike. In Twilight's report, she says "never look a gift horse in the mouth", which is an idiom that means don't be negative or ungrateful of a gift. Hoity Toity walks over to Rarity and congratulates her for her impressive fashion debut and requests a dozen of each dress "by next Tuesday." Rarity laughs nervously with a tic in her eye, and the scene cuts to black.

Gallery

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