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  • Alternate Aesop Interpretation: In this episode, Rarity learns that she shouldn't be ashamed of where she comes from. But what about putting the priorities of your friends first? Isn't that a more fitting moral?
    • Twilight threw that moral out the window when she told Rarity to go talk to the Canterlot ponies. Most friends would prefer that their friend do something that will help them get connected than a birthday party.
    • Besides, acknowledging your roots (hometown and friends, in this case) is an important lesson, because it makes up a large part of who you are. The only reason Rarity does lie, is because she's compromising that.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Did Twilight really not realize that Rarity had twice tried to blow her off for the Canterlot elite (once with the dress, once at the party)? Or did she know all along, and feigned ignorance to help Rarity save face? Or was the boorish behaviour of her and the rest revenge?
    • Were the mane six socially clueless at the Garden Party, or were they serving alcoholic drinks at Twilight's party and had gotten slightly inebriated?[1]
      • However, there is no alcohol in Equestria (or, at the very least, no alcoholics or social drinking) according to Word of God.
      • The show does often go against Lauren's word though.
    • Did Fancypants recognize Twilight Sparkle for who she was? He gives a mysterious wink when he refers to her as "this lovely young filly from Ponyville..."
      • If this is true, he may even know a little bit about her personality- particularly that she dislikes special treatment and that she wouldn't appreciate him announcing her identity.
  • And the Fandom Rejoiced: The idea of Pinkie having weapons of mass celebration has been floating around the fandom for some time.
    • A lot of fans were quite happy to see Octavia again, if only briefly.
  • Crazy Awesome: If the "Party Cannon" doesn't make Pinkie Pie this, then nothing ever will.
  • Ear Worm: You know the girls' show genre is turned on its head when a [2] that sounds exactly like a Barbie commercial is genuinely good.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: This episode introduced several new minor and background ponies. Fancypants is already quite popular in the fandom, and his unnamed female companion has already spawned a bunch of fanart within a day of the episode airing.
    • There's a funny case with Wonderbolt Fleetfoot. A few days before this episode aired, someone created an OC Stand In out of an Off-Model Wonderbolt that appears briefly in "The Best Night Ever", giving her the name Echo. The premise of a blind Wonderbolt was popular enough to get fanart within days... and in this episode "Echo" returns, gets the name Fleetfoot, and wins the race. Said blog adopted it as Echo's surname, and now she's probably one of the most popular Wonderbolts.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Remember just one week before when Pinkie Pie said that "the only thing that should be rubbed in anypony's face is chocolate cake"? Guess what happens during the birthday party.
  • Off-Model: There is a 'blink-and-you'll-miss-it' moment where the earth pony Rarity is talking to suddenly gains a horn for the sake of a gag. It's during 'Becoming Popular' and Rarity is choosing the desserts.
  • So Bad It's Good: Twilight Sparkle's dance, it's a really bad dance, yet makes Twilight look Adorkable doing it.
    • Much like its inspiration, Julia-Louis Dreyfus doing "The Elaine" in Seinfeld.
  • Spoiled by the Format: "Hearth's Warming Eve" originally aired before "Family Appreciation Day" and "Baby Cakes", so its plot synopsis was known prior to this episode's airing. As a result, the synopsis that mentioned the *six* friends going to Canterlot to do a play suggested that Rarity would choose her friends over her important business connections.
  • Straw Man Has a Point: The viewers are meant to see the Canterlot Elite as smug jerks for looking down on Ponyvillians. Considering that a bunch of Ponyvillians trashed the Grand Galloping Gala (the highest profile annual social gathering in Equestria), and by the end of the episode, trashed the Canterlot Garden Party (the second highest profile social gathering in Equestria), one wonders if the Canterlot Elite's aversion to Ponyvillians is actually somewhat deserved.
  • Uncanny Valley: A very disturbing piece of art.
  • The Woobie: It's hard not to feel sorry for the bellhop pony for breaking his back just to do his job.

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Notes

  1. Maybe that's why Spike wasn't present
  2. Officially named by Daniel Ingram as "Becoming Popular (The Pony Everypony Should Know)"

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