When they "reformed" him back in "Keep Calm and Flutter On," I was rather miffed by the whole idea of it. To me, I saw it as the show's way of saying they didn't want to do anything more with Discord, so their solution was to reform them, thereby curtailing any fan expectations of him coming back and thereby cut him out altogether. And since Discord is one of the best characters the show's produced, that was a darn shame in my mind and a big disappointment, not helped by a whole lot of missed potential as Discord was and still is an awesome villain and reforming him keeps him from really getting to shine as such. And he's played by a great actor too (I'm still tickled pink they went and got John de Lancie, of all people, to play him). So in a way, seeing him be reformed cheapened the whole character for me, and I was rather bitter about it for the rest of season three...even though I couldn't argue with their methods in getting him reformed in the first place (I'll say it again: "Well played Fluttershy. Well played.")
But...gradually I warmed to the idea. Other fans, being more open-minded to it than I, started toying around with the idea and soon demonstrated that Discord still had loads of potential while reformed, and now in whole new ways that he didn't before. Eventually I saw that it could be worse; they could've left Discord in statue form and he never ever appeared again. I still had my doubts by the time season 4 premiered...but as that same premiere demonstrated, I had been wrong about the show's crew not being interested in doing more with Discord...because there he was...and not quite as "reformed" as I had first been initially led to believe he was. Honestly, I think the ONLY reason he is even staying (just barely) within the line now is because he doesn't care to end up as a lawn ornament again, and isn't about to look a gift horse, in this case the chance to remain free, in the mouth. That meant that Discord could indeed still cause trouble and mishaps for the Mane 6, just more...creatively, and more down towards the scale of the day-to-day affairs sort of thing, an idea that I had to admit was rather appealing. Either way, I figured that eventually they would do an episode exploring this possibility, and we'd see for ourselves just how this was going to work out.
Well...here it is.
Well, ask and ye shall receive, because this is that episode (at least until any remaining episodes in the season have had their chance to show if they can top it) and its exactly what the doctor ordered. Right from the beginning I was liking what I saw, and that was basically just Twilight, Fluttershy, and Pinkie discussing their morning mail (Gee, Pinkie gets real excited about discounted and pre-owned patio furniture, doesn't she?). But the premise it pitched grabbed my attention. Cadance coming to make a personal visit with Twilight? Yes please! Fluttershy scoring the chance to go out on an animal expedition on her own? Definitely yes!
So then we see Fluttershy off (followed by an amusing Pinkie gag with a balloon that becomes a running gag) and then see Cadance arrive (complete with a sleek crystal train and a brief cameo of a certain Flash Sentry, although they don't really do anything with him. Curiously, though, there is no "ladybugs awake" this time around...not that I'm complaining, because as cute as it was, it was REALLY starting to get old) and then seeing her and Twilight off to see a Starswirl the Bearded traveling museum (dropping a few more hints about the ever mysterious Starswirl (seriously, they need to do an episode on him. I mean, they did it with Daring Do!) and a reprise of Twilight in her Starswirl costume and indications that Cadance is a Starswirl fan too). The remainder of the Mane 6 promise to do their part to keep things peaceful so Twilight and Cadance can have a relaxing visit. All is well.
Then comes Discord.
And he's blue.
From head to toe!
And I knew then and there that I was going to enjoy this episode.
Because one: Discord. You can't go wrong with Discord. Unless you're planning to reform him in that episode, and they done and did that already, so...
And two: he's seemingly under the weather.
I mean think about it. Discord, the almighty and powerful draconequus with the power to do pretty much whatever he darn well wants is ill. Sick. And not entirely in control of his magic it seems...so of course hilarity is going to ensue.
And it does, as Discord promptly proceeds to eliminate Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie (with a balloon again), Rarity, and Applejack from interfering in his quest for attention while he's ill (and as part of an attempt to deliberately sabotage Twilight and Cadance's good time) and pretty much places his care and well being on Twilight, easily the pony who likes him the least. But because Twilight knows Equestria needs Discord to think he's welcomed, or risk him going amok again, she plays along. Even going as far as the end of Equestria (literally) to try and find a cure for his "blue flu." And the hilarity continues.
Of course, it is eventually revealed that Discord had been faking it from the beginning, in an attempt for attention and, as already stated, to mess up Cadance's visit with Twilight, which as it turns out he didn't succeed in doing as much as he had hoped. As payback, Discord then becomes genuinely sick and is bedridden...which everypony else is rather smug about of course. But nonetheless, the ride getting to this point was wonderful.
I'll be the first to admit that the writing for this episode does come out a bit rushed, and that's probably my one criticism. They had so much fun fooling around with Discord that at times it seems clear they kind of forgot they had a story to tell, and probably had a problem keeping focus.
Aw, but it was worth it though, if only because it meant we got a Discord song. And for once, it is a musical number I welcomed, because I knew any song in which Discord personally preforms was going to be fun to watch. And it happened to be a song I actually enjoyed too, which is even better.
And the references! OH THE REFERENCES! I'm going to have to sit down and go back through that whole musical number frame by frame just to catch them all!
But yeah, this is the episode I was waiting for season 4 to do, the one that was just flat-out fun and enjoyable to watch, and it was just in time, too!
It's also made me very interested in seeing what future episodes the rest of the season has in store. Word on the street is that the next episode should be entertaining. Personally, I'm still looking forward to "Twilight Time." I'm just going off of the title alone, but something about that episode seems promising to me (so you watch, that episode will premiere and naturally I'll end up hating it, won't I?).
And they dropped references to Breezies in this episode, so I am assuming "It Ain't Easy Being Breezies" will be following-up on that.
...Breezies, Breezies, Breezies, RRR! I feel like this should MEAN something to me...
EDIT: One last thing...in regards to the song...anybody else catch the reference in the lozenges part? Because that was probably my favorite part. :D