So it actually makes sense that the Apple family would be related in some way to one of the other members of the Mane 6.
Obviously, road trip antics ensue. As well as Murphy's Law, where anything that can go wrong, naturally does. This tries the patience of all Apple family members (save the unflappable as always Pinkie) but manage to get through it all together still, teaching the lesson of family-togetherness and so forth.
And that's really all the episode is about, honestly. There was a song, but like the other songs this season, nothing I'm particularly enthused by (though I liked that they did get Big Mac in on singing it). There were jokes, but nothing particularly funny. Big Mac's tendency to be quiet is deliberately maintained as a running gag by other characters cutting him short, or cutting into scenes after he has done any lengthy speaking (though it is implied he can be both deep and verbose in actual conversation, we just never really see it) but I wasn't really surprised by any of that. There was lots of characterization, but didn't really introduce anything new for any of the characters, just continued past trends. Granny Smith and Big Mac both, I believe, got the most screen time in this episode than anytime previous in the series, which is great as they're both great characters, but nothing really notable is done with that screen time. Apple Bloom almost makes an "Applicious" reference but is conveniently cut short. The writing namely revolves around the Apple family and what a great family they are, which is a theme I have longed loved about the Apple family, but nothing truly significant or heart-moving is done with it and is really just the same-old, same-old, and honestly the plot is rather predictable. The only really significant things about the episode is the implication that Pinkie could be a distant relation to the Apples, but even this is muted by the fact that the episode sneakily avoids confirming or denying if this is really true and just leaves it up in the air, which I was rather miffed by. I wanted them to actually DO something with that, to actually show if that would be fact and a neat twist for the episode, or prove to be false and thus reenforce the episode's theme, but instead they shirked committing to it entirely.
All in all, it was a rather mediocre episode. I can't especially say I hated it, but I can't especially say I liked it either. The story's fine, I can think of no obvious flaws in it or its reasoning...it just doesn't do anything notably special about it. And that's really all there is to say about this episode.
Still, out of nine aired episodes thus far, this is really only the second that I can say as such about it, and that's not bad odds, considering. Back in the first season, there were four to five episodes in the whole season that I felt mediocre (or less) about, at least three of which took place in that season's first nine. So, statistically speaking, season four's been going good still, nonetheless.
Though I'm still waiting for that one episode that kicks the season out of the ball field for me, which every previous season has consistently done for me in the past.
And I would kind of like for them to get back to that mysterious box of their's...at the very least mention it in passing in the dialogue, if just to show the gang hasn't forgotten about it (I though they were going to do a storyarc for this season? If so, I haven't seen much of it).
And I think it's time for Twilight to do something "princess-y" again. Lately she's just been tagging along like nothing's changed...which certainly isn't a bad thing, but surely now that she's princess, there's princess stuff she's got to do every now and then, right? Heck, I'd just be satisfied with just more references to her being a princess, which actually hasn't been done for a few episodes now.
Still, looking ahead at some of the titles of upcoming episodes, it seems like there is still some potentially neat things coming up in the season, so I'm looking forward to that. I'm curious about "Twilight Time," so much so I'm tempted to break my usual rule of minimizing any and all exposure to spoilers to try and learn more about the episode. Probably won't though, just because that's who I am.
"It Ain't Easy Being Breezies" feels like it should also be striking a cord with me too...but I'm honestly not sure why...