|Family Appreciation Day|
|Season episode №:||12|
|Overall episode №:||38|
|Original airdate:||January 7, 2012|
|Written by:||Cindy Morrow|
|Storyboard:||Sherann Johnson & Justin Nichols|
|Featured characters:|| Granny Smith|
| credits • transcript • gallery • allusions|
animation errors • statistics • speculation
Hearth's Warming Eve
This episode is listed as number eleven on Zap2it's episode guide.
Preparing for the zap apple harvest
- "The zap apples are comin'! The zap apples are comin'!"
- — Granny Smith
The following morning Applejack and Big McIntosh are making preparations at the apple orchard, unloading large baskets by the bare trees. Inside the Apples' house, Apple Bloom enthusiastically exclaims to Granny Smith that she's ready to make zap apple jam. Granny Smith starts by giving Apple Bloom a stick with some twigs tied to its end, prompting Apple Bloom to inquire if it is some special herbal ingredient she uses, but Granny Smith replies that it's a broom and that she should start sweeping.
At the orchard, a strong wind starts blowing and the skies get covered with dark clouds. The naked trees starts buzzing with blue sparks around their branches, and soon the sparks disappear and big leaves sprout, which Applejack calls "zap apple leaves".
Diamond Tiara taunts Apple Bloom
- "Thank goodness you're here on the farm and not in town where everypony could see you."
- — Diamond Tiara taunting Apple Bloom
The scene fades to Apple Bloom and Granny Smith in town gathering ingredients for the zap apple jam. Granny Smith sings loudly and hops along, drawing the attention of other townfolk, which makes Apple Bloom lower her head in embarrassment. Granny Smith inspects some pots and pans at a stand and chews on one of them, and leaves her false teeth attached to it then carries along. She makes smalltalk with the bees while harvesting their honey. Apple Bloom begs her grandmother to stop acting that way when Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon spot them. The fillies derisively call Apple Bloom by the nickname that Granny Smith gives her, which makes her bury her head in shame and eventually beg Granny Smith to get back to the farm. Granny Smith keeps singing and prancing, and Apple Bloom pulls down her bonnet over her eyes, embarrassed.
Scheduling Granny Smith for Family Appreciation DayThe next scene has Filthy Rich giving a lecture about his business at the schoolhouse in front of a bored, half-asleep classroom–except Diamond Tiara, who is alert and attentive. He concludes his lecture and Cheerilee thanks him for being a part of Family Appreciation Day, first as "Mr. Filthy", but he frowns and Cheerilee quickly corrects herself to "Mr. Rich." Cheerilee checks her her list for the student up for the next Family Appreciation Day, and names Apple Bloom. Apple Bloom tells her that Applejack and Big McIntosh will be too busy to come and speak because it's zap apple harvest day. Cheerilee asks if anyone else from her family could come, and Apple Bloom nervously shakes her head no, but Diamond Tiara butts in and exclaims that Granny Smith could come. Apple Bloom tries to say something, but Cheerilee quickly accepts the offer. Apple Bloom is horrified and whines to herself that she'll be the laughing stock of Ponyville.
- "Come Monday, I'll be the laughin' stock of Ponyville!"
- — Apple Bloom
Apple Bloom tries to avoid humiliation
Back at the farm, Applejack tells Apple Bloom she and Big McIntosh can't take a break from the harvest. The third sign manifests in a quick change in weather, a flock of crows circling the orchard in a flight pattern of an apple, and the blossoming of teal flowers on the zap apple trees. When the sign concludes, Applejack assures Apple Bloom that Granny Smith has no shortage of entertaining stories to tell.The scene cross-fades to the Cutie Mark Crusaders' treehouse, where Apple Bloom shares her woes with her friends Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle in a long string of synonyms. Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo tell Apple Bloom they'll help her postpone her presentation, trying tactics like faking an illness for Apple Bloom, manipulating a napping Granny Smith to say that she won't be able to make the presentation to Cheerilee, trying to harvest the zap apples early (while they get to feel the trees' magic defense), and sending Granny Smith on a train journey to see Uncle Apple Strudel. The last attempt works, and Granny Smith goes to visit Apple Strudel.
The scene cross-fades to the schoolhouse, where Cheerilee welcomes Granny Smith for Family Appreciation Day, but she doesn't arrive. Apple Bloom explains that Granny Smith got called out of town on account of a family emergency, but right as she finishes the sentence Granny Smith enters the classroom. Apple Bloom, surprised, asks Granny Smith if she missed the train, and she replies that it came and Uncle Apple Strudel was on it. Diamond Tiara makes a snide remark about Granny Smith's memory to Silver Spoon, and afterwards Granny Smith starts her presentation.
Granny Smith's story
- "Long ago when I was a little pony, things were very different here in Ponyville... 'cause there was no Ponyville!"
- — Granny Smith
Granny Smith then goes on to describe the how she paid attention to the signs of the harvest of the zap apple trees each year, how the apples all zap away if you don't pick them all in one day, and how she mixed up batches of zap apple jam. The process would come to involve the strange activities she was exhibiting earlier in the episode: being friendly with the bees so their honey would be sweet, talking to glass jars to make sure they won't crack, and that "zap apples like pink polkadots". As to exactly why it improves the jam, she came to chalk it up to the magic apples themselves and that magic is just funny that way. She tells that ponies started coming to the farm from far and wide for the zap apple jam, and that the first thing Diamond Tiara's great grandfather Stinkin' Rich ever sold was her zap apple jam. He would stay in the area to open a permanent store, and this came to attract more ponies to relocate to what would become the town site. She concludes, "and that is how Ponyville was founded."Granny Smith's account of Ponyville's founding agrees with the account given in Winter Wrap Up by Twilight Sparkle, where she tells Spike that Ponyville was founded by Earth ponies. After Granny Smith finishes her story, Silver Spoon kicks off a round of applause, to which everyone joins in. Diamond Tiara is shocked at the attention Granny Smith has received, and lashes out at her, but Apple Bloom rushes to defend Granny Smith. At the end of the episode, Apple Bloom tells Applejack that Family Appreciation Day went well and she learned that she should always appreciate and be proud of her family and friends, even if they may seem different.
- "My Granny Smith is super special! I just forgot that for a little while."
- — Apple Bloom learning her lesson
The episode ends with Filthy Rich, sternly pushing Diamond Tiara, wearing a big pair of bunny ears, to go and join in with other foals from school in singing to the water in the watering cans.
Zap applesThe zap apples are magical apples that grow in the Everfree Forest and the Apple family orchard, which was the Smith family orchard when they were first planted, as told by Granny Smith to Apple Bloom's class in this episode. Granny Smith tells of how she picked the apples from trees in the Everfree Forest and planted their seeds in the Smith family orchard, and how they magically grew to full size trees and their fruits were made into various foodstuff, chiefly Granny Smith's zap apple jam, which was instrumental in the founding of Ponyville, according to her story. Zap apples were originally called "Zapples" and went through several other names, such as "Zippityzapples", "ZipZap Apples", "Zipzapples" and "AppleZaps", according to Cindy Morrow.
Zap apple harvest
Zap apples are first featured in this episode. They appear and disappear quickly in the span of five days, which is why Applejack and Big McIntosh can't spare time from the harvest to speak at Apple Bloom's school. Their appearance is accompanied by signs that are numbered by Granny Smith. When the Cutie Mark Crusaders try harvesting the apples the evening before zap apple harvest day, Apple Bloom warns her friends, "Zap apple trees aren't like normal apple trees. They're magic." Sweetie Belle tries bucking a tree to harvest the apples but gets electrocuted, and when the three Crusaders try picking an apple and can't manage to pull it off the branch they end up catapulting themselves from the bowed tree.
First sign: timberwolvesFirst, Granny Smith announces that the timberwolves are howling and that the zap apples are coming, although she later says that they howl "when the zap apples first start growing", after the other signs. The timberwolves appear in Granny Smith's flashback when she tells the story of the zap apples and the founding of Ponyville to Apple Bloom's class. Young Granny Smith enters the Everfree Forest despite its dangers in search of food. She hears a wolf's howl, and after she comes across the zap apple trees the timberwolves start gathering around her, howling and snarling. She escapes, and outruns the wolves back to the farmhouse, where she clangs pots and pans which scare away the timberwolves.
"Timberwolf", or "timber wolf" is a colloquial name for some subspecies of gray wolf, or for the species itself. The timberwolves in the episode have glowing yellow eyes and their bodies look like pieces of timber.
Second sign: zap apple leavesThe next day after the first sign, a sudden strong wind starts blowing and the skies get covered with dark clouds. The naked trees starts buzzing with blue sparks around their branches, and soon the sparks disappear and big leaves sprout, which Applejack calls "zap apple leaves". The clouds quickly disperse, and soon afterward Granny Smith tells Filthy Rich that the zap apples are due in four "days, to be exact."
Third sign: crows and flowersThe third sign is loudly pointed out by Granny Smith. There is another sudden wind and gathering of dark clouds, and a flock of crows circles above the orchard, making an apple shape with their flight pattern. Glowing teal flowers sprout on the trees and blossom into star-shaped flowers, accompanied by blue electric sparks. The clouds quickly disperse and the flowers stop glowing but remain on the trees.
Fourth sign: meteor shower
The evening before zap apple harvest, the Cutie Mark Crusaders watch the zap apples sprout on the trees after a meteor shower. Apple Bloom announces that it's the fourth sign, and the three Crusaders sneak into the orchard to harvest the zap apples, though Apple Bloom warns her friends that zap apple trees are magic. The fillies fail at their attempts to pick the apples, which are still small and gray, and not rainbow-colored like the harvest-ready zap apples.
Fifth sign and ripeningThe weather changes abruptly for a final time before the zap apples are ready to harvest. There's a lightning storm over the orchard, then a rainbow shines over it, and the zap apple trees are once again teeming with electrical sparks. The zap apples turn from gray to rainbow-streaked, and rainbow-beams fire all across the orchard from the apples. An aurora-like rainbow shines behind the apple trees and the zap apples change shape from small round apples to larger, more elongated and squarish. Applejack watches the transformation and announces that the zap apple harvest has begun, and Granny Smith announces that "tomorrow we will be makin' up some zap apple jam!"
Zap apple jamGranny Smith tells Apple Bloom that she had been making zap apple jam since she was a little pony, and that there is "a whole mess o' steps in this process and you gots to get each one of them just right, or no zap apple jam." When she gives her presentation to Apple Bloom's class, she mentions being friendly with the bees so their honey would be sweet, talking to glass jars, and that "zap apples like pink polka-dots." Early in the episode Apple Bloom and Granny Smith hop over full watering cans in bunny suits while singing the alphabet, and Apple Bloom tries to explain to Diamond Tiara the purpose of this activity, but Diamond Tiara cuts her off. Applejack later asks Apple Bloom's classmates if they want to help Granny "sing to the water".
At the end of the episode, ponies are lining up to buy the zap apple jam that Granny Smith and Apple Bloom made, much like they did in Granny Smith's story. With the exception of Stinkin' Rich, all the ponies in the zap apple jam queue in Granny Smith's memory are the same ponies who queue up for the zap apple jam in the present day, without the sepia tone or old fashioned clothing. Granny Smith tells Apple Bloom's class that it's the zap apple jam that attracted settlers to Ponyville after the Smith family first settled there, and that zap apple jam was the very first thing that Diamond Tiara's great grandfather Stinkin' Rich ever sold.
- For more quotes, see the episode's transcript.
- Apple Bloom: Ready, Granny!
- Granny Smith: Ready for what?
- Apple Bloom: For makin' zap apple jam!
- Granny Smith: Darn tootin'! It's time for some good old-fashioned zap apple jammin'!
- Apple Bloom: Yes ma'am, I can't wait ma'am!
- Granny Smith: [pause] Wait for what?
- Apple Bloom: To make zap apple jam with you!
- Granny Smith: O'course.
- Granny Smith: Oh, are they your friends? Hello, Half Pint's friends!
- Silver Spoon: Hiii, Granny Smith! Hiii, [mockingly] Half Pint!
- Cheerilee: Well, thank you, Mr. Filthy- I mean, Mr. Rich.
- Apple Bloom: I'll be embarrassed, shamed, disgraced, mortified, humiliate-
- Scootaloo: What are you, a dictionary?
- Apple Bloom: Whuh- what are you doing here? Did you miss the train?
- Granny Smith: Er no, it came. And Uncle Apple Strudel was on it.
- Apple Strudel: Ooooooh, noogie noogie noggie! [laughs madly]
- Granny Smith: Magic is as magic does, just funny that way.
- Applejack: So I take it Family Appreciation Day went well?
- Apple Bloom: Did it? My Granny Smith is super special! I just forgot that for a little while.
- Granny Smith: Aw, don't fret. I forget things all the time. Now, I'll getcha... er... somethin'.
- ↑ Raven Molisee's DeviantArt journal (2012-02-23). Retrieved on 2012 February 23.
- ↑ Cindy Morrow on Twitter (2013-03-15). Retrieved on 2013 March 15.
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