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CALL OF THE CUTIEEdit

WrittenbyMeghan McCarthy
ProducedbySarah Wall
Story editingbyRob Renzetti
Supervising directionbyJayson Thiessen
Co-directionbyJames Wootton
TranscribedbyAlan Back(ajback@yahoo.com)

PrologueEdit

(Opening shot: fade in to a schoolhouse during the day. The facility sports a playground, flagpole, and bell tower, as well as a sign by the front walk that displays a picture of an open book and two rearing fillies. Near the entrance is a filly-shaped topiary; a similar ornament tops the flagpole. Young voices are heard talking as the bell rings; inside, Apple Bloom sits among many other young ponies in a single large classroom. They sit on their haunches at separate desks, and some have placed their saddlebags alongside on the floor.)

(Zoom in slowly and cut to a close-up of one student’s cutie mark, panning to others: a flower, an ornate silver spoon, a bow and arrow, then a group of three smiling flowers on an adult pony who walks to the front. On the next line, zoom out to frame its owner, Cheerilee: earth pony mare, dark red-violet coat, green eyes, curly two-tone reddish-pink mane.)

Cheerilee: Let’s quiet down, please. We have a very important lesson to get to.

(The talking stops and she turns toward an easel set up by the front desk and chalkboard.)

Cheerilee: Thank you. Today we are going to be talking about cutie marks.

(Cut to the easel on the end of this; she nips the top sheet in her teeth and pulls it away, revealing several designs typical of the ones seen to date. A pink earth pony filly, with a violet/white mane and tail and light blue eyes, is not impressed. This is Diamond Tiara, who wears this particular item on atop her head.)

Diamond: (under her breath) Boring.

(Pan to Bloom, seated at the next desk, who throws her an annoyed look.)

Cheerilee: (from o.s.) You can all see my cutie mark, can’t you?

(Bloom comes up with a pencil in her teeth, ready to take notes. Back to the teacher’s cutie mark, zooming out as she speaks.)

Cheerilee: (nudging sheet off easel with head) Like all ponies, I wasn’t born with a cutie mark.

(A close-up of the new page shows two photographs tacked to it; one partially covers the other and depicts her as a filly with no cutie mark. Zoom in on it.)

Cheerilee: (from o.s.) My flank was blank.

(A white earth pony filly with a curly red mane/tail and large blue-framed glasses speaks up next, with a pronounced lisp. This is Twist.)

Twist: Awww, she’s so precious!

(Cheerilee now has a pointer in her teeth.)


Cheerilee: Then one day, when I was about your age, I woke up to find that a cutie mark had appeared.

(Back to the easel on the end of this; she pushes the first photo away to expose the second: herself as a younger mare, with teased-out mane and tail, black/white checkered bandana, neon bracelets on one foreleg, a leg warmer on one rear leg. She also has braces, star barrettes in her mane, and her cutie mark. Zoom in.)

Filly 1: (from o.s.) Look at her hair!

(The whole class laughs.)


Cheerilee: (rolling eyes) Yes, I know, but honestly, that’s how everypony was wearing their mane back then. (Cut to the picture and zoom in; she continues o.s.) I had decided to become a teacher, and the flowers symbolized my hope that I could help my future students bloom— (Bloom takes notes.) —if I nurtured them with knowledge.

(Pan to her other side, where another earth pony mare inspects a front hoof in a bored manner. She has a gray coat, a two-tone mane/tail in lighter shades of this color, and light-blue-framed glasses framing violet eyes whose color is slightly obscured by the lenses’ glare. She wears a pearl necklace and keeps her mane in braids. This is Silver Spoon.)

Cheerilee: (from o.s.) The smiles represented the cheer I hoped to bring to my little ponies while they were learning. (Back to her.) Now, can anyone tell me when a pony gets his or her cutie mark?

(Twist’s hoof shoots up.)


Twist: (from o.s.) Oh! Oh! Oh! (Cut to her.) When she discovers that certain something that makes her special.


Cheerilee: That’s right, Twist. (circling to stand behind desk) A cutie mark appears on a pony’s flank when he or she finds that certain something that makes them different from every other pony. (Cut to Bloom; she continues o.s.) Discovering what makes you unique isn’t something that happens overnight. And no amount of hoping, wishing, or begging will make a cutie mark appear before its time.

(During the second half of this, Bloom’s note-taking is interrupted by two “Pssst!” interjections from Diamond—the first with her o.s., the second as she leans briefly into view. After Cheerilee finishes, she leans over again.)

Diamond: Pssssssst! Bloom: (softly) What?

(Diamond ducks away and comes up with a folded paper in her teeth, flicking her eyes across the way to indicate Silver gesturing to receive it. Close-up as Bloom gets hold of it in her mouth.)

Cheerilee: (from o.s., sharply) Apple Bloom!

(Zoom out as the passer aims a pair of bright shining innocent eyes straight ahead.)

Cheerilee: (from o.s.) Are you passing a note? (Bloom drops it.) Bloom: Uh…um… (Cut to the approaching Cheerilee.) Cheerilee: What could be so important that it couldn’t wait until after class?

(She directs her eyes toward the floor with a little gasp; cut to a close-up of the dropped sheet.)

Cheerilee: (from o.s.) It’s blank!

(She aims a disapproving stare at the yellow filly as the camera zooms out to frame Diamond, who laughs nastily. Her voice marks her as a snob from head to hooves.)

Diamond: (softly) Remind you of anypony?

(Silver joins in the laugh as Bloom looks unhappily at her own unmarked hindquarters and the camera zooms in briefly on them. Cut to an overhead shot of the room, zooming out as all the other students whisper and stare at the yellow filly, then fade to black.)


OPENING THEME


Act One

(Opening shot: fade in to the exterior of the schoolhouse. The bell rings and students head out the door; Twist hops merrily along the walk, while Bloom lags dejectedly behind for a moment, toting her saddlebags. Twist, like Bloom, does not have a cutie mark.)

Twist: Want some sweets? I’ve got some peppermint sticks. I made them myself. Bloom: (shaking head) Mmm-mmm. Twist: (coaxing; both stop) They’ll make you smile. Bloom: No.

(She looks back the way she came and sees Diamond and Silver walking along. Each filly’s cutie mark is the same as her name.)

Diamond: I don’t know why we had to sit through a lecture about getting a cutie mark. I mean, waiting for your cutie mark is so last week.

(They have now pulled even with Bloom and Twist, Cut to Silver, who waggles her rump smugly for Bloom to glare at.)

Diamond: (from o.s.) You’ve got yours… (Cut to her, showing off for Twist.) …I just got mine. (walking past) We all have them already. (She gasps and doubles back.) I mean, almost all of us have them already.

(The bespectacled white filly glowers silently at the showoff, who circles around with Silver.)

Diamond: Don’t worry, you two. You’re still totally invited to my cute-ceañera this weekend.

(Except for the first syllable, the word “cute-ceañera” is pronounced identically to “quinceañera”—in Latin American culture, a party commonly thrown to celebrate a girl’s fifteenth birthday. Silver’s voice marks her as the one who made fun of Cheerilee’s mane/tail in the old photo; she is as stuck-up as Diamond.)

Silver: It’s going to be amazing. Diamond: It’s a party celebrating me and my fantastic cutie mark. How could it not be? Diamond, Silver: Bump, bump, sugar lump rump!

(On the first “bump,” they tap one front hoof together—Diamond’s right, Silver’s left—while standing on the opposite hind leg. On the second, they stand on both hind legs and tap both front hooves together. “Sugar lump”: Diamond’s left hock and Silver’s right one touch. “Rump”: they put their rumps together so that their cutie marks are framed next to each other. Their giggles contrast markedly with Bloom’s disgusted expression.)

Bloom: (under her breath) Gimme a break. (Diamond and Silver walk off.) Silver: See you this weekend… (Both giggle.) Diamond, Silver: …blank flanks!

(More derisive laughter as the camera zooms in on the discomfited pair. Dissolve to a long shot of Applejack and Bloom among the trees of Sweet Apple Acres. The elder sister is picking up scattered apples in her teeth and dropping them into a tub.)

Bloom: It’s not fair! (Close-up.) It’s just not fair! (Applejack sighs with a touch of impatience.) Applejack: Don’t get your mane in a tangle. You’ll get your cutie mark. Everypony gets one eventually. Bloom: But I don’t want one eventually! I want one right now! I can’t go to Diamond Tiara’s cute-ceañera without one. I just can’t! Applejack: ’Course you can. You know, I was the last pony in my class to get a cutie mark, and I couldn’t be prouder of it.

(Extreme close-up of the three red apples near her tail.)

Applejack: (from o.s.) I knew my future was to run Sweet Apple Acres— (polishing them with a knee) —and these bright shiny apples sealed the deal.

(Cut to frame both. She gasps as an idea strikes, then continues without noticing Bloom walking away.)

Applejack: Come to think of it, Granny Smith was the last one in her class, too. Huh…same with Big Macintosh. Bloom: (kicking an apple) I really don’t see how that’s supposed to make me feel better. (She sits on her haunches, her forelegs hanging into an apple tub.) It probably means that bein’ the last one in your class to get a cutie mark runs in the family.

(She leans her head into the tub, then yanks it out and gets upright.)

Bloom: Runs in the family… (smiling) …runs in the family! (She zips back to Applejack.) Runs in the family! You’ve got apples for your cutie mark…Granny Smith has an apple pie… (leaning into Applejack’s face) …Big Macintosh has an apple half…my unique talent must have somethin’ to do with apples! (jumping back and forth) Apples, apples, apples!

(She thuds down, a few loose pieces of fruit tumbling back; at ground level, she has fallen into a full tub and upset it.)

Bloom: Oops. (Zoom out; Applejack sends an irked glance her way.) Apples.

(Wipe to a busy Ponyville street and pan past Sugarcube Corner to an apple cart. Applejack and Bloom stand by it, each wearing a white apron; Bloom has an apple balanced on her head, while Applejack calls out to the crowd.)

Applejack: Get your delicious, nutritious apples here! Bloom: Delicious and nutritious, and so many uses!

(With a toss of her head, she flips the apple upward, catches it in her mouth, and starts chewing.)

Bloom: You can eat ’em… (Swallow; she addresses Carrot Top and another mare.) …play with ’em…

(Grabbing another one from the nearest tub in her teeth, she throws it into the air and smacks it with a tennis racquet, which winds up a sopping, pulpy mess. A distant crash marks the outcome of her serve.)

Voice: Hey! Watch it! (A third apple goes airborne.) Bloom: (kicking it backward) …create fine art for your home with ’em…

(A unicorn stallion, about to start painting a picture, has his creativity rudely interrupted when the apple splatters against his canvas. He catches some of the mess on his nose and glares at Bloom when she zips over.)

Bloom: …you’d have to be crazy not to get a bushel of your very own! (Applejack reaches into view and yanks her back by her bow.) Applejack: (laughing apologetically, to crowd) She’s so creative. (Doctor Whooves passes.) Bloom: You, sir! (She rushes ahead and cuts him off.) Care to buy some apples? Whooves: Uh, no, thanks. (She pops out from a produce cart to cut him off.) Bloom: Why not? Whooves: (backing away nervously) I have plenty at home. (He runs into Bloom, now behind him.) Bloom: Are you sure? Whooves: (walking forward) Yes, I’m pretty sure.

(She cuts him off again and slowly backs him up toward the apple cart.)

Bloom: You’re pretty sure, but you’re not absolutely, positively, completely, super-duper sure, are you? (He begins to sweat buckets before this onslaught.) Whooves: Uh, if I buy some apples, will you please leave me alone? Bloom: (brightly) All right!

(After a quick bit of fishing around, he produces several coins, throws them into Applejack’s apron pocket, then bolts away with an apple in his teeth. Close-up of her.)

Applejack: (calling after him) You forgot your change! Bloom: (from o.s.) Woo-hoo! (Cut to her.) That’s how you sell some apples and get a cutie mark!

(These last words puzzle her older sister a fair bit. Now Bloom starts circling in place, her head cocked back over her shoulder to see if any new decorations have popped up farther back.)

Bloom: So, what does my cutie mark look like? A shoppin’ bag full of apples? A satisfied customer eating an apple?

(She stops, noticing the area to be still blank, and crosses to a mare looking over a tub of apples placed on the ground during the next line.)

Bloom: Hmmm…maybe I gotta increase my sales figures first. (She looks the mare dead in the eye.) You touch it, you buy it! We take cash or credit.

(This declaration comes with enough force to push the prospective customer back in a fright. Now Applejack steps in.)

Applejack: I’m sorry, ma’am. (The mare bails out.) Ma’am!

(With a frustrated little sigh, she turns to face front again.)

Applejack: Now, Apple Bloom, you can’t just—

(On the end of this, cut to Bloom, now emptying a tub of apples into a saddlebag worn by Bon Bon.)

Bloom: That’ll be four bits. (The mare glares down at her.) Bon Bon: I didn’t put those in my bag! (Close-up of Bloom.) Bloom: Likely story. Four bits, lady! Applejack: (from o.s., shoving hoof over her mouth) Apple Bloom! (Longer shot, framing all three.) I am really, really sorry ’bout that. She’s new.

(Close-up of the saddlebag that has not been stuffed with apples.)

Applejack: (from o.s.) Here. Take these. (Several are dumped in.) No charge. (All three again; she points to another load.) And these.

(They go in, but Bon Bon still does not seem satisfied—so Applejack pulls out another tub.)

Applejack: And these.

(Since the saddlebags are now full to bursting, she hoists this tub on her head and drops it on Bon Bon’s back, causing her to nearly collapse under the total weight. She drags the apples away.)

Applejack: (calling after her) Y’all come back now, you hear?

(Looking back at the cart, she discovers that the entire inventory is now gone.)

Bloom: What? Applejack: Sorry, little sis, but your apple-sellin’ days are over! (She pulls at Bloom’s apron in her teeth.) Bloom: What?! (It comes off.) But how else am I gonna get my cutie mark? (She yanks it back.) Applejack: Home! (stamping a hoof) Now!

(The failed salesgirl spits the apron away with a pout and whine.)

Applejack: (sighing) Listen, sugar cube. I know it’s hard to wait for your very own cutie mark, but you just can’t force it. (Cut to the sulking Bloom; she continues o.s.) Besides, you’re not that grown-up just yet. (Zoom out to frame her.) Ain’t there other fillies in your class without one? Bloom: Well…Twist doesn’t have hers yet. Applejack: Do you think you’d feel better if you went to the party with her? Bloom: (smiling) Mmm-hmm. Applejack: Well, there you go! Bet you and Twist would have a great time together. (Bloom starts to hurry off.) Now run along and find your friend. (She stops.) Bloom: You’re sure you don’t want me to stick around ’til the end of the market?

(The owner of the tennis racquet she used to hit the apple has found it and is not amused. Earth pony stallion, light tan coat, dark brown mane/tail with mustache and sideburns. He wears a red headband that holds his mane back, a blue/white sweatband on one foreleg, and yellow/white shorts that hide his cutie mark. In addition, he has dark blue eyes and prominent tufts of hair on his chest.)

Tennis pony: Hey! Who’s been usin’ my racquet?

(Zoom out to frame the two sisters observing worriedly from a distance.)

Applejack: Yeah. I’m sure.

(Wipe to the exterior of the herb/flower shop and zoom in as Bloom trots to the front door and knocks. Its top half opens and Twist looks out, noticing her classmate after a moment. When she speaks, her tone is somewhat less cheerful than when they met after school, though she is still smiling.)

Twist: Oh. What’s up, Apple Bloom? Bloom: (occasionally glancing back at her rump) So I was thinkin’, maybe we could go to Diamond Tiara’s cute-ceañera together. I don’t have a cutie mark, you don’t have a cutie mark. Twist: (uneasily) Well, um…

(She ducks down and hits the latch on the door’s lower half. It swings opens to expose two things: a suddenly self-satisfied grin, and a mint-condition cutie mark of two crossed candy canes. Bloom stares pop-eyed with a gasp; Twist brightens considerably as she walks past.)

Twist: Isn’t my cutie mark swell? I’ve always loved making my own savory sweets, but it took me some time to discover that it was my super-special talent. Pretty sweet, huh?

(If Bloom’s spirits were low before, they are now perhaps five feet beneath her hooves. She sits on her haunches in front of the shop door.)

Bloom: Yeah. (looking herself over) Pretty…sweet. Twist: (consolingly) Hey, this doesn’t mean we can’t go to the cute-ceañera together. (Diamond and Silver cross behind her.) You’re still gonna come to the party, aren’t you? Diamond: Of course she will. Silver: It’s not like being the only pony there without a cutie mark will be, like… (Contemptuous laugh; she continues o.s. in a cut to Bloom.) …the most embarrassing thing ever.

(Those last five words cause the little filly’s cheeks to burn red with shame, and she bites her lower lip to keep from crying as the stuck-up pair’s nasty laughter drifts over. Zoom in slowly and fade to black.)


Act Two

(Opening shot: fade in to Bloom, sitting glumly on her belly by a well. Rainbow Dash pokes her head into view from above.)

Rainbow: Whoa. Looks like somepony’s got a dark cloud hanging over her head.

(Zoom out. The well sits amid a cluster of houses in Ponyville, and there is indeed a dark cloud directly overhead—a sizable one, to be exact.)

Rainbow: Let me do something about that. (She bulldozes it away and descends to the ground.) What’s the matter, kid?

(Bloom stands up, sucks in a huge breath, and starts to spill her guts.)

Bloom: (rapid fire) There’s a cute-ceañera this afternoon and everypony in my class’ll be there and they’ll all have their cutie marks and I wanna get my cutie mark but I’m no good at sellin’ apples but I really wanna go to the party but how can I go to the party if I don’t have my cutie mark which my big sister says I’m gonna get eventually but... (full whine mode) …I WANT IT NOOOWWW!

(The pegasus does not even skip a beat in the face of this phonetic onslaught.)

Rainbow: Cutie mark? I can get you a cutie mark like that! (She snaps her tail out straight on the last word.) Bloom: Applejack says these things take time. I have to just wait for it to happen. Rainbow: Why wait for something to happen when you can make it happen? Bloom: But…Applejack says that… Rainbow: Hey, who are you gonna listen to? Applejack, or the pony who was first in her class to get a cutie mark? (flexing wings, bounding over Bloom) I always liked flying and all, but I was going nowhere in a hurry. It wasn’t until my very first race that I discovered a serious need for speed.

(Cut to an empty bit of air, which is quickly filled by an extreme close-up of the tri-color lightning bolt and cloud on her haunch.)

Rainbow: (from o.s.) And ka-zam! (Zoom out; she goes into a crouch.) This sweet baby appeared as fast as lightning.

(She takes off, leaving a certain yellow filly to gaze up in admiration. Dissolve to an extreme close-up of said filly’s straining face and front hooves as she does push-ups in the grass.)

Rainbow: (from o.s.) That’s right!

(In a longer shot, she hovers just behind Bloom, having put on a headband and hung a whistle around her neck. Bloom has a headband as well as her bow.)

Rainbow: Stretch out those legs! Gotta be nice and loose! The key here is to try as many things as possible, as quickly as possible. One of ’em is bound to lead to your cutie mark. Are you ready? (Bloom straightens up.) Bloom: I’m ready! Rainbow: I said, are you ready?!? Bloom: (rearing up) I’m ready!

(A ball drifts across the view, filling the screen.)

Rainbow: (voice over) Juggling! Go!

(Behind it, wipe to a close-up of her blowing the whistle. The trainee stands on one hind leg, juggling several balls from a nearby basket. She does well for a few seconds, then loses her balance and belly-flops into the grass, the balls bouncing off her head and back. A hang glider drifts across the screen.)

Rainbow: (voice over) Hang gliding! Go!

(Behind it, wipe to her standing on a cliff; she blows her whistle, and Bloom—now sporting an old-style aviator’s leather helmet and goggles—starts into a sprint with a glider on her back. After several dozen yards, she trips and starts to tumble head over tail.)

Bloom: Whoa!

(She slides to an upside-down stop just short of the cliff, with one corner of the glider hanging over the edge and Rainbow throwing her a slightly disgusted look. A boxer’s heavy bag drifts across the screen.)

Rainbow: (voice over) Karate! Go!

(Behind it, the view changes to show Rainbow standing in a dojo and clad in a white martial-arts training uniform. At the sound of her whistle, an identically clad Bloom launches a flying kick; she has removed her headband.)

Bloom: Hai-yah!

(One rear hoof connects squarely with a heavy bag, but it does not move; instead, Bloom’s face instantly freezes into an expression of incredible silent pain. She hangs motionless for a second before thudding to the floor. A kite swoops across the screen.)

Rainbow: (voice over) Kite flying! Go!

(Behind it, Rainbow is seen blowing her whistle in a meadow. She and Bloom have ditched the uniforms, and Bloom—now back in her blue headband—stands with a kite made of leaves lying behind her, its spool of line in her teeth. She begins to gallop, letting the line play out as the kite starts to gain altitude; all too soon, though, it takes a few deranged loops and nose-dives straight to the ground. The novice kite-flyer watches wide-eyed as all the leaves crumple off the branch framework.)

Rainbow: (voice over) Ultra Pony Roller Derby! Go!

(During this line, a roller skate crosses the screen; behind it, Rainbow blows her whistle while standing on a small platform. Zoom out; it is a table on the infield of a roller rink, and a crash-helmeted Bloom scrambles by on skates with three tough-looking colts in pursuit. She looks fearfully back just in time to see them growl at her, then pitches forward with a scream and tumbles out of control. The other three slam on the brakes, but too late; the screen fills with their impact, then clears to show all four skaters lying in a semiconscious tangle at one corner of the rink. Bloom extricates herself and rolls slowly away, red-faced and grinning as best she can.)

(Dissolve to her lounging under a tree, while Rainbow looks at a checklist.)

Rainbow: Tried that one…tried that one…tried that one…

(The sound of young laughter catches Bloom’s attention. Pan in its direction to the Carousel Boutique, which is only a few steps away; the source is Diamond and Silver, who are walking past. Diamond has a large, wrapped box on her back.)

Silver: Your new outfit is like, perfect for the party. (Back to Bloom, who gasps in fright and dives behind a bush.) Diamond: (from o.s.) I know. It totally shows off my new cutie mark.

(Zoom out to frame the pair as they walk by Bloom and Rainbow.)

Silver: I love being special. Diamond: Can you imagine how embarrassing it must be to be…not special? Silver: (sighing with contempt) I don’t even want to, like, think about it. Rainbow: (looking at checklist) Tried that one… (The bush; she continues o.s.) …ugh, tried that one… (Bloom climbs out.) Bloom: I’m doomed! Doomed! I’ll never find somethin’ I’m good at!

(She drops her head with a pathetic little whimper before Pinkie Pie pokes her head into view.)

Pinkie: You look like you’d be good at eating cupcakes. Bloom: (smiling) Eatin’ cupcakes? Rainbow: Eating cupcakes? Pinkie: (jumping in place, sing-song) Eating cupcakes! (She hops away.) Bloom: I really appreciate all your help, Rainbow Dash. (slowly backing off) You’re a really great coach and I’ve really learned a lot from you, and I’m sure I could learn a lot more, but…I’ve got some cupcakes to eat! (dashing after Pinkie) See you at the cute-ceañera! (calling ahead) Hold on, Pinkie Pie! I’m comin’!

(Wipe to a close-up of the high-spirited pony walking into the kitchen of Sugarcube Corner from outside.)

Bloom: I can’t believe I didn’t think of this. (Longer shot; Pinkie is setting a muffin tin on the counter.) A cupcake-eatin’ cutie mark! It’s so obvious! (zipping about, looking in drawers/cabinets/oven) Now, where are those cupcakes? I’m ready to chow down! Pinkie: I don’t have any cupcakes. Bloom: Oh. (Pinkie gasps sharply; close-up of Bloom.) Pinkie: (from o.s., plunking chef’s hat on Bloom’s head) But you look like you’d be good at helping me make some! Bloom: (uncertainly) I guess a “making-cupcakes” cutie mark could work too.

Light mandolin/tambourine melody, fast 4 (D major)

(Pinkie leans into view and sings with a wink, then dumps some flour into a mixing bowl. During the song, Bloom’s mood gradually shifts from puzzlement to enthusiasm.)

Pinkie: All you have to do is take a cup of flour, add it to the mix (Lollipops and candy are added next; Bloom eyes a lemon that is balanced on her head; it falls as Pinkie winks again.) Now just take a little something sweet, not sour, a bit of salt, just a pinch Bass in (She twirls the muffin tin on her nose, flips it onto her head, and knocks a full spoon with her chin to send it flying.) Baking these treats is such a cinch, add a teaspoon of vanilla (It sails over Bloom’s head.) Add a little more and you count to four, and you never get your fill-a

Drums/synthesizer in

(The pink pony proceeds to break the laws of physics repeatedly throughout the remainder of the song. Namely: instantly popping her head into view from above after bounding out of view, then just as quickly appearing from behind the pantry and a hanging lamp. She tops it off by twice making herself appear in two places at once, facing the camera directly and interacting with Bloom. The most “normal” thing she does is to keep the young filly from dropping a stack of pans balanced on her head.)

Pinkie: Cupcakes, so sweet and tasty, cupcakes, don’t be too hasty Cupcakes, cupcakes, cupcakes, cupcakes

Song ends

(In the final overhead shot of the song, Bloom has done away with her chef’s hat. Dissolve to a close-up of a newly disorganized counter; the whir of an electric mixer is heard, and a gobbet of batter splats down. Zoom out and pan across the kitchen to frame Bloom, who has donned the hat again and is working the mixer. A buzzer sounds, and she whips across to the oven without bothering to shut off the device; more batter goes flying as she grabs the door handle in her teeth and pulls. The combination of black smoke from the oven, and dust from a bag of flour she knocks over, causes her to cough for a moment before grabbing a potholder in her teeth to pull the cupcakes out. Her eyes pop in sudden pain.)

Bloom: (spitting out tin) Hot! Hot! Hot! (She lets her tongue hang out.) Pinkie: (from o.s.) Ooh! (Close-up of the treats, burned black.) Those look much better than the last batch.

(Zoom out to frame her standing over the smoking lumps. She takes a big crunchy bite out of one, crumbs adhering to her bulging cheeks, as Bloom watches in total disbelief. She licks her chops and tries one herself, only to spit it out.)

Bloom: (crushed) Guess I’m not cut out to be a baker either. (moaning; close-up) I just have to face it. I’m gonna have a blank flank forever. Pinkie: (from o.s.) What about that?

(“That” is a white patch that is now in the spot where a cutie mark would go. The red-gold eyes bug out and turn back to it.)

Bloom: What about what? (circling in place; chef’s hat falls off) Is there something on my flank? Is there? Is there? Is there?

(Rushing to an overturned metal bowl on the floor, she angles herself to show the spot’s reflection clearly. She gasps happily.)

Bloom: A cutie mark! It’s a…

(Close-up of the reflection, which shows a measuring cup fading into view on the white ground. Zoom in on it.)

Bloom: (from o.s.) A measurin’ cup? (Fade away.) No. (Bowl appears.) A mixin’ bowl? (Fade away.) No. (Back to her.) Are those cupcakes?

(The reflection again; three cupcakes appear now.)

Bloom: (from o.s.) A tower of cupcakes, maybe.

(Zoom out as Pinkie blows over the white patch, causing it to disappear.)

Pinkie: Flour! It’s flour! (jumping up and down) Yay! I guessed it! What game do you want to play next? Please say bingo, please say bingo.

(She has not noticed the devastating effect that her action has had on Bloom. Both are caught off guard by the next voice.)

Twilight Sparkle: (from o.s.) Whoa!

(Zoom out to frame her at the kitchen door.)

Twilight: What’s been going on in here? (Pinkie slides over, burned cupcakes on head.) Pinkie: We’ve been making cupcakes. Want to try one? Twilight: No, thank you. Not that they don’t look… (forcing a grin) …delicious. Bloom: Twilight! You have to help me! Twilight: What’s the matter?

(For the second time this act, the little pony gets a good lungful of air and proceeds to tell the tale.)

Bloom: (rapid fire) Tiara’s cute-ceañera’s today and everypony in my class’ll be there and they’ll all have their cutie marks and I wanna get my cutie mark but I’m no good at selling apples or hang gliding or making cupcakes. But I wanna go to the party but how can I go to the party if I don’t have my cutie mark, which Pinkie Pie says I can’t just make appear, but I need it to appear… (full whine mode) …RIIIIGHT NOOOOW!

(Like Rainbow, Twilight has managed to hold her ground and her composure through this verbal torrent.)

Twilight: Uh…I don’t follow. How can I help you? Bloom: You can use your magic to make my cutie mark appear! Twilight: Oh, no, Apple Bloom.

(Close-up of Pinkie’s mark; zoom out on the next line to frame her mixing batter.)

Twilight: (from o.s.) A cutie mark is something that a pony has to discover for herself. (Bloom pops up into view.) Bloom: Please, Twilight. Just try. (Shift to frame both.) Twilight: I’m sorry, but— Bloom: (fidgeting, grabbing Twilight’s chest) Oh, please, please, please, please, please! Twilight: All right, all right! (Bloom backs up.) Bloom: Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you!

(The multitalented unicorn fires up her horn and hits the right spot with a blast. A cart filled with apples appears.)

Bloom: YES! (It slowly fades away.) I knew you could do… (sadly)…it. Twilight: I’m sorry, sweetie. But I told you— Bloom: Try again, try again!

(With the classic sigh that is the precursor of “I told you so,” Twilight follows orders. This time, she conjures up a kite mark, which fades out. This is followed by three cupcakes, a teddy bear, a tricycle; the view then shifts to Bloom’s face, which gradually shows increasing dejection as flash after flash hits her with increasing speed. The final failed attempt is a trio of footballs, after which she voices a little gasp and Twilight lifts her head clear.)

Twilight: Told you that not even magic can make a cutie mark appear before its time. Bloom: It’s hopeless. Hopeless! (walking slowly to shop floor) I just won’t go to the party. I can’t go! Everyone will just laugh at me and make fun of me and call me names. It will be the worst night of my life. Twilight: I’m sure it won’t be as bad as all that. (Close-up of Bloom.) Bloom: Forget it. There’s no way I’m goin’ to that…

(Zoom out quickly. Around her, the shop floor is suddenly filled with mares and fillies, presents and sweets are stacked up on the tables, and the whole place is tricked out for a soiree.)

Bloom: (swallowing hard) …party?

(Zoom in slowly on her expression of glassy-eyed shock and fade to black.)


Act Three

(Opening shot: fade in to a tray of frosted cupcakes. Music and happy chatter are heard as one of the partygoers leans into view to take a bite, but the taste disagrees badly with her and she quickly spits it out on the floor. The dark color visible under the frosting shows this to be one of Bloom’s botched baking attempts. Elsewhere, others are talking as Diamond struts her stuff, wearing an outfit that consists of a white-polka-dotted pink saddle with blue and pink edging and a frilly white collar. Silver, alongside, wears a pink/blue saddle with yellow/light-green edging and a blue collar accentuated by a yellow flower. Even Twist is getting into the spirit, leaving Bloom to stand by herself in the background by a chocolate filly sculpture as the camera zooms in on her. She ducks behind this and peeks out.)

Bloom: How could I have forgotten the time? How could I have forgotten Pinkie Pie was hostin’ the party? How could I have forgotten it was at Sugarcube Corner? Pinkie: (from o.s., setting a party hat on her head) Don’t forget your party hat… (Longer shot; she wears one as well.) …Forgetty Forgetterson!

(She hops away, and Bloom dives behind the sculpture again, her hat falling off.)

Bloom: (zipping from sculpture to hide behind a cake) I have to get out of here before anypony sees me.

(A couple of late arrivals stroll in, after which Snails—one of the two young unicorns who woke up the Ursa Minor in “Boast Busters”—walks over to the cake and takes a huge bite. The resulting hole is big enough to leave Bloom in view.)

Diamond: (from o.s.) Hey! (Zoom out; she gets in Snails’ face.) It’s my cute-ceañera! I’m supposed to get the first bite of cake!

(The yellow filly takes advantage of the distraction to get away from the table. Pan to another guest wearing a large hat; a moment later she steps away to leave Bloom visible, hunkered down on a table. The next dive is behind a bunch of balloons, but they start to pop after the camera cuts to her side of it. Out in front, a unicorn stallion is dancing and swinging his head about so that his horn bursts one after another. Her cover blown, Bloom makes another break for it and works her way from a table, to a group of guests, to another table, and then the one with the punchbowl. A peek out from beneath its cloth shows that she has nearly reached the open exit door.)

Bloom: (softly) Okay, Apple Bloom. (Zoom in on the doorway; she continues o.s.) Almost there.

(Lifting the table on her back, she tiptoes gingerly down the home stretch, stopping twice so as not to draw attention. On the second stop, a mare notices the bowl and slurps directly from it, ignoring the provided cups. This is Berry Punch: earth pony, pink coat deeply tinged with purple, eyes and curly mane/tail in deep magenta, cutie mark of a bunch of grapes and a strawberry. Bloom’s third maneuver/stop puts her nearly at the doormat; in close-up, she emerges and happily heads out, only to run flat into Applejack when the camera zooms out.)

Applejack: Apple Bloom! You made it! (walking in, pushing Bloom back) After I heard about Twist, I was afraid you wouldn’t show up. Sure am glad you came to your senses about this whole cutie mark thing.

(She has not noticed her sister’s profuse sweating and scrabbling to get past her and out the door. Cut to Bloom’s retreating perspective of the foiled escape route.)

Applejack: (from o.s.) These things happen when these things are supposed to happen. (Back to the pair.) Tryin’ to rush it’ll just drive you crazy. (She stops.) I’ll let you be. Looks like your friends want to talk to you.

(Bloom throws a worried glance over her shoulder; quick pan to Diamond and Silver, who are clearly relishing the moment. As they close in, the unmarked pony looks desperately around herself and yanks the cloth off the punchbowl table with her teeth. After a quick bit of knotting, she gets it tied around herself to act as a makeshift dress that covers her entire rear half, except for her tail.)

Diamond: (from o.s.) Well, well, well. (Zoom out; she and Silver approach.) Look who’s here. Silver: Nice outfit. (They trade a wicked giggle.) Bloom: Just somethin’ I, uh, pulled together last minute. Diamond: It really shows off your cutie mark. Oh, wait, that’s right—you don’t have one. Bloom: I have a cutie mark. Silver: (caught off guard) What? Since when? Bloom: Since, um, earlier today. (Cut to Diamond.) Diamond: Oh, really? Let’s see it. (Pan to Bloom, caught off guard by this challenge.) Bloom: I shouldn’t. I-I couldn’t. (smiling with false bravado) My cutie mark is so unbelievably amazing. I’m afraid that if I show it off, everyone will start paying attention to me instead of you.

(On the second half of this last sentence, cut to Diamond and Silver, whose faces betray a combination of disbelief in her story and fear that she might have the goods to back it up.)

Bloom: Outshined at your own cute-ceañera? (leaning close to Diamond) Can you imagine how embarrassin’ that would be? Diamond: Ah, forget it. I didn’t really want to see it anyway. Bloom: (cheerfully) Okay. Well, I’m gonna go mingle. (She saunters away.) Enjoy your party!

(She lets off an almost inaudible sigh of relief at having bluffed out the pair—and then the edge of her “dress” catches on one of the floorboards. After a moment’s straining against the snag, she rips free of it and topples forward headfirst. Instead of going out the door, though, she bangs into a table next to it that holds a hand-cranked phonograph. The loud scratch of the needle being knocked off the record elicits a gasp from the crowd, followed by stunned silence as a smirking Diamond and Silver zip over. Bloom’s blank hide is now out there for all to see.)

Bloom: Oh, no. (Laughter from the pair.) Silver: Oh, wow, that is an amazing cutie mark. (More laughter.) Diamond: Nice try… Diamond, Silver: …blank flank!

(Bloom finds herself on the receiving end of more mockery and a soft chant of “blank flank”—until a brash young female voice speaks up.)

Voice: You got a problem with blank flanks?

(Stunned gasps from the entire crowd, two of whom back away to expose a pair of fillies hiding under a table behind them. On the start of the next line, they step out into full light. The speaker is an orange pegasus with a deep magenta, unruly mane/tail and vivid violet eyes. Her companion is a unicorn, nearly the same gray-tinged white color as Rarity; she has light green eyes and a curly mane/tail in pastel pink and violet. These two are Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle, respectively, and both are plenty sore about the ribbing Bloom has taken. Both are roughly the same age as Bloom.)

Scootaloo: I said, you got a problem with blank flanks? (Back to Bloom, Diamond, and Silver.) Silver: The problem is, I mean, she’s, like, totally not special.

(Sweetie’s voice carries a higher pitch than Scootaloo, but her vexation gives it the same edge.)

Sweetie: (from o.s.) No… (trotting to stand by Bloom) …it means she’s full of potential. (Zoom out; Scootaloo is on Bloom’s other side now.) Scootaloo: It means she could be great at anything. The possibilities are… (imitating Diamond and Silver) …like, endless.

(Slow pan across the dumbstruck crowd.)

Sweetie: (from o.s.) She could be a great scientist, or an amazing artist, or a famous writer. (Back to the trio.) She could even be Mayor of Ponyville someday! Scootaloo: And she’s not stuck being stuck-up like you two.

(Said two take this very badly, but the rest of the bunch gets a good laugh out of it.)

Diamond: Hey! This is my party. Why are you two on her side? Scootaloo: Because…

(For the first time, she and Sweetie turn to present their profiles to the camera, rump to rump. Neither has a cutie mark, and Bloom gasps at the sight—or lack of one, in this case.)

Bloom: You don’t have your cutie marks either? I thought I was the only one! Scootaloo: We thought we were the only two. (Twilight walks up.) Twilight: I, for one, think you are three very lucky fillies. Diamond: Lucky? (Silver lets her tongue hang out in disgust.) How can they be lucky? Twilight: They still get to experience the thrill of discovering who they are— (Cut to them; she continues o.s.) —and what they’re meant to be. Applejack: (walking over) And they’ve got all the time in the world to figure it out— (to Bloom) —not just an afternoon.

(The young pony finds herself the center of attention from several others in her age group. The next two lines overlap somewhat.)

Filly 2: Wow, Apple Bloom! I wish I could be a scientist. Filly 3: Do you really think you could be Mayor? Filly 4: Maybe I got my cutie mark too soon.

(The mark in question is a crown. All too quickly, the focus shifts away from Diamond and onto the trio. The two fillies with the overstuffed egos find themselves standing alone.)

Diamond: Hey, what’s everypony doing? This is my party. Everypony’s supposed to be paying attention to me! Silver: Whatever. We still think you’re losers—right, Diamond Tiara?

(She starts into their “secret handshake” routine from Act One, but quickly loses steam as she notices that Diamond is having no part of it.)

Silver: Bump, bump, sugar…lump… Diamond: Not now, Silver Spoon.

(They clomp away, the camera zooming in on Bloom, Scootaloo, and Sweetie.)

Scootaloo: Name’s Scootaloo. Sweetie: And I’m Sweetie Belle. Bloom: Apple Bloom.

(Dissolve to a close-up of Diamond and Silver, now up on the stairs and watching the proceedings with no enjoyment whatsoever. The music and the festivities have resumed.)

Twist: (jumping up and down) This song is so super!

(In a longer shot of the room, she and other guests are dancing, talking, enjoying themselves; Twilight and Applejack clink cups of punch held in their teeth and drink a toast. Pan from them to a corner table, where the three new friends are gathered, and zoom in slowly. Snails, in the foreground, takes a bite of a properly prepared cupcake.)

Bloom: So I was thinkin’. Now that we’re friends… (Close-up.) …I mean, we are friends, right? (Pan to Scootaloo.) Scootaloo: How could we not be? We’re totally alike. We don’t have cutie marks, Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon drive us crazy— Sweetie: Totally crazy! (All laugh.) Bloom: Well, now that we’re friends, what if the three of us work together to find out who we are and what we’re supposed to be? (Her perspective of the others on the end of this.) Sweetie: Ooh, ooh! We could form our own secret society! Scootaloo: I’m liking this idea! (Back to Bloom.) Bloom: A secret society! Yeah! We’ll need a name for it, though. (Pan to Scootaloo.) Scootaloo: The Cutie Mark Three? (To Sweetie.) Sweetie: The Cute-tastically Fantastics? (Back to Bloom.) Bloom: How about…the Cutie Mark Crusaders? Scootaloo: It’s perfect! (The next two lines overlap.) Sweetie: This is gonna be so great! Bloom: We’re gonna be unstoppable!

(Using her nose, the little pegasus retrieves a cupcake from the nearest counter and deposits it on the table.)

Scootaloo: What do you say we celebrate with some of these delicious cupcakes? (Bloom hurriedly stops her from digging in.) Bloom: Not the cupcakes! Trust me.

(Another of her duds, apparently.)

Sweetie: Let’s see if there are any cookies! Bloom: Yeah! Scootaloo: Come on!

(They head across the room. Zoom out to frame Twilight looking on with a smile, then cut to the newly minted Crusaders during the next line. Scootaloo has a cookie in her teeth and flips it upward, only to have it land on her forehead and break. The other two laugh at the sight, and she shakes herself clean and offers a sheepish smile.)

Twilight: (voice over, dictating) “Dearest Princess Celestia: I am happy to report that one of your youngest subjects has learned a valuable lesson about friendship.”

(Now they dance and horse around, soon joined by Twist.)

Twilight: (voice over) “Sometimes, the thing you think will cause you to lose friends and feel left out…”

(Dissolve to a close-up of Princess Celestia, reading this message as it floats before her. She is in her bedchamber.)

Celestia: “…can actually be the thing that helps you make your closest friends…” (Longer shot; she sits on her bed before a roaring fireplace.) “…and realize how special you are.”

(The scroll rolls up and floats away. Cut to a close-up that frames her sun cutie mark as she turns her gaze to it; zoom in slowly.)

Celestia: (softly) Hmmm.

(Fade to black.)

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