|Growing Up is Hard to Do|
|Season episode №:||22|
|Overall episode №:||218|
|Original airdate:||September 28, 2019
|Written by:||Ed Valentine|
|Storyboard:||Tori Grant and Anna Latzer|
|Featured characters:||Cutie Mark Crusaders|
|Song:||Being Big is All It Takes|
|credits • transcript • gallery • allusions|
animation errors • statistics • speculation
The Big Mac Question
Growing Up is Hard to Do is the twenty-second episode of season nine of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic and the show's two hundred and eighteenth episode overall. The title is a reference to the Neil Sedaka song "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do".
In this episode, the Cutie Mark Crusaders are magically transformed into grown-ups, and they discover that growing up the right way means gaining experience and wisdom that simply can't be rushed.
This episode was released on Videoland's on-demand service in the Netherlands on August 17, 2019, forty-two days ahead of its scheduled premiere on Discovery Family, but was later taken down.
This episode was originally scheduled to air on September 20, 2019 on Polish channel MiniMini+, but was replaced with a rerun of an earlier episode. However, it was still released the following day on the nc+ GO on-demand service.
It also aired on PLUSPLUS in Ukraine on September 21, 2019.
Fillies without a chaperone
At the Cutie Mark Crusaders' clubhouse, Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo are excited to go to the Appleloosa County Fair and have made meticulous preparations to attend. Unfortunately, with all the planning they did for their trip, they forgot to ask one of their older sisters to be their chaperone. Rarity is preoccupied with making a new design for Fancy Pants, Rainbow Dash has to help Spitfire corral some storm clouds, and Applejack is taking care of a sick Big McIntosh.
With each pony they ask, the Crusaders are warned not to travel by themselves or else they might get lost, and the responsibilities that come with being adults. At the Castle of Friendship, the Crusaders also ask Fluttershy and Twilight Sparkle, but the two are busy researching an enchanted flower sent by Star Swirl the Bearded. They too warn the Crusaders about the dangers of traveling without a chaperone and the possibility of getting themselves lost in a strange place.
As Twilight and Fluttershy leave to find information about the flower in the castle library, the Crusaders lament their situation and express their desire to be grown-ups. Reacting to their wishes, the flower sheds one of its last remaining petals and envelops the Crusaders in magical light. When the light subsides, the Crusaders find themselves magically transformed into fully grown mares.
Being big is all it takes
Now full-grown adults, the Cutie Mark Crusaders believe they are old enough to travel to Appleloosa by themselves, and they race to catch the Friendship Express before it leaves the train station. While riding the train, the Crusaders express through the song Being Big is All It Takes the joys of being grown-ups and no longer being held back by the limitations of being too young. Unfortunately, after boarding the wrong train, they end up at Hayseed Junction instead of Appleloosa.
Following an encounter with a deranged ticket-taking pony, the Crusaders decide to try traversing the dense swamp and reaching Appleloosa on foot, believing being grown-ups is all they need to do so. Unfortunately, they soon get become lost—just as Twilight and her friends previously warned. They then run into a pair of young ponies named Biscuit and Spur, who are arguing whether or not to take their pet Bloofy to the Appleloosa County Fair.
Once again, the Crusaders believe being adults puts them in a position to give Biscuit and Spur grown-up advice, and they suggest that Biscuit and Spur share Bloofy and bring him to Appleloosa, much to Spur's displeasure. Following behind Biscuit and Spur, the Crusaders finally arrive to the Appleloosa County Fair, where one of the Appleloosan attendants notices Bloofy and suggests that Biscuit enter him in the animals showcase. Spur tries to voice her disagreement with this idea and turns to the grown-up Crusaders for advice, but they run off on their own to enjoy the fair.
It takes more than being big
By the time Spur catches up with the Crusaders again, Biscuit is already signing up Bloofy for the animal showcase. Spur, having taken care of Bloofy longer than Biscuit, is worried about exposing him to a large crowd of ponies, but the Crusaders once again side with Biscuit and suggest that Spur take a break. However, soon after Biscuit and Bloofy begin their turn in the showcase, Bloofy gets nervous from all the spectators watching him, and he turns into a tornado that starts tearing up the showcase stadium.
Twilight and Fluttershy soon arrive to Appleloosa via train in search of the missing Crusaders, and the fillies-turned-adults appear to inform them of what is going on. At the showcase stadium, Fluttershy identifies the rampaging Bloofy as a rare creature called a Whirling Mungtooth and explains he will only calm down in the presence of its caretaker. Realizing that Spur is Bloofy's true caretaker, the Crusaders go to find her while Twilight and Fluttershy evacuate everyone in the stadium to safety.
Once the Crusaders bring Spur back to the stadium, Fluttershy helps her calm Bloofy down, and Bloofy still wins the animal showcase award for "Most Interesting Creature". Back at the train station, the Crusaders realize that even though they are physically adults, they still lack the wisdom, experience, and maturity that comes with growing up naturally. Using the last remaining petal of the flower Star Swirl sent to Twilight, the Crusaders wish themselves back to filly age.
Biscuit and Spur are surprised to discover the Crusaders are actually younger than they are. The Crusaders apologize for lying to Biscuit and Spur about their real age and for being selfish, and they ask if they can visit Biscuit, Spur, and Bloofy some day. Spur agrees on the condition that they have a real grown-up accompany them next time.
- For more quotes, see the episode's transcript.
- Sweetie Belle: And I've got our whole itinerary planned!
- Apple Bloom: Are you sure you're not Twilight's sister?
- Sweetie Belle: You mean we spent all this time planning a trip, and none of us asked anypony to take us?!
- Scootaloo: In our defense, every other part of the trip was planned really well.
- Twilight Sparkle: I know it's hard, but sometimes you just can't do what you want.
- Scootaloo: I'm pretty sure if you wanted to go to the fair, you could.
- Twilight Sparkle: Sure, grown-ups can do a lot of things that foals can't. But there's plenty we can't do either. Like right now, I can't find a single reference to this flower!
- Sweetie Belle: We made it!
- Apple Bloom: Of course we did! We're grown-up ponies now! We can do anything! And all those worries Twilight and the others had don't apply anymore. Because we're big! And bein' big is all it takes!
- "Loose Tracks": Sorry, I don't mean to laugh. But you three must not travel much. This is Hayseed Junction. The train to Appleloosa isn't for a few hours. Or you could set off on hoof. It's treacherous and confusing! Unfit for the young or timid! But you three are grown-ups. You'll be fine. I'll write down some directions.
- Apple Bloom: Come on. We didn't come all this way for nothin'. Besides, I've been through a swamp as a young pony. As a grown-up, it'll be a snap.
- Scootaloo: Grown-ups always know the way!
- Sweetie Belle: Because being big is all it takes!
- Scootaloo: If they go to the fair, we can tag along!
- Apple Bloom: And Spur probably should share Bloofy. I mean, that's somethin' a grown-up would say, right?
- Sweetie Belle: As grown-up ponies, we think you should share Bloofy and let Biscuit take him to the fair.
- Biscuit: That is some quality grown-up advice!
- Fluttershy: I hope you're right about the girls coming here.
- Twilight Sparkle: Well, once we read Shadetail Evergreen's warning that the flower grants wishes, it wasn't a stretch to think they wished themselves to the fair. It's all they were talking about.
- Fluttershy: Or maybe, since we told them they were too young to come, they wished to become grown-ups, then came here and caused some kind of trouble that led to a town-wide panic!
- [distant screaming]
- Twilight Sparkle: Yeah. Or that.
- Apple Bloom: And even though we seem like grown-ups, you were way more responsible than us.
- Spur: What do you mean, "seem" like grown-ups?
- Apple Bloom: We did everything real grown-ups told us not to and caused all kinds of trouble.
- Scootaloo: And things could have been a lot worse. I guess we were pretty selfish.
- Twilight Sparkle: I'm glad you learned something. That's what growing up is. Which is why you probably shouldn't skip any of it.
- Sweetie Belle: I know we didn't make the best impression, but we sure would like to visit you and Bloofy some day.
- Spur: I guess that'd be okay, on one condition. You get a real grown-up to bring you.
- Cutie Mark Crusaders: Deal!
- Jim Miller (2019-03-08). Not if you count BGE as an episode!. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019 March 8.
- Jim Miller (2019-09-28). We wanted to start ageing them up a few seasons back. 🤷🏽♂️. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019 September 28.
- Jim Miller (2019-09-28). Starting the next season.. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019 September 28.
- Jim Miller (2019-09-29). It's never stated in the script, but my theory when working on the show was that they were cousins.. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019 September 29.
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