Here we are at the penultimate episode of the latest season. Yes, as shocking as it sounds, the next one will be the final MLP episode for awhile. While the final two-parter is of course hyped, this installment is also very anticipated. The mane (pun intended) reason is the guest appearance of actress/singer Lena Hall. The last time a famous guest star appeared was in Season 4 with the appearance of ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic, so it’s cool to see the show having another guest. Besides that, the main reason I was personally hyped was that Amy Keating Rogers would be writing. Sadly, this will be her last episode. So I just want to take a sentence and thank Amy for writing fantastic episodes throughout the years. Now, let’s talk about “The Mane Attraction.” There are some glaring negatives in the middle act which stops it from being perfect, but as a whole it’s a very good watch and a fabulous send off for the writer.
Here’s the official description from Discovery Family:
An old friend of Applejack’s has become a huge pop star and Applejack fears that the singer’s manager does not have her best interests at heart.
That description had me partially worried that it would tread similar ground. Earlier in the season we had “Canterlot Boutique,” which featured the same story of an overbearing manager. This is the main problem with the episode. The character is extremely annoying. Of course, he’s supposed to be that way. But I think the writing could have done a little better, making it more realistic than a satire on management. The entire character arc feels forced for a conflict in the story. This particular plot didn’t need a conflict. Going further with this, are you telling me Coloratura didn’t know he was overbearing? It’s hinted at in the beginning she did, but when Applejack confronted her about it, Coloratura made it seem like he was this wonderful guy. The argument between her and Applejack is, again, forced conflict. Her blurting out that Applejack “was jealous” just didn’t make sense. Another thing is when Applejack is discussing the manager with Rarity and the latter doesn’t seem to understand. This is a grave shame since Rarity has had firsthand experience.
With that out of the way, we can discuss the many quality things about the episode. Coloratura is a fantastic character, though her being seemingly oblivious to the manager was pretty sad. Still, the climax makes up for that. Lena Hall of course deserves immense credit for her superb voice portrayal. There are two songs, both of which are A+. The final song in the ending is definitely one of the show’s very best and almost makes up for the severe lack of songs this season. The song, “The Magic Inside,” also is symbolic of Amy’s leaving the show. And what send off lyrics they were! Applejack is very good throughout as we see she doesn’t want to give up on her friend, wanting to show her the light. It’s a shame the two didn’t get to share more dialogue.
Overall, “The Mane Attraction” is quite the spectacle. The entire climax is one of the show’s finest. Coloratura is a great new character, though suffers from some questionable writing in the middle act. Still, it doesn’t detract from the end song. Amy Keating Rogers will be missed, but she has left her mark on the franchise future writers will want to look at.