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  • Hmm... It seems my view of Giovanni -- and Team Rocket, by extension -- looks relatively dim, for lack of a better word, compared to others. Give my view of Interstellar Alliance President John Sheridan from Babylon 5 and the Dazzlings, a trio of girls who tried to hypnotize Canterlot High School back in October, the credit for those thought streams, and my fellow bronies appear content riding out the riots erupting over a place called Ferguson, in Missouri.
    Ah, Hoenn. The first new region I remember playing through, and you and the other Pearlshippers know what tilted my attention away from Johto during the time it was on television. Recalling that overarching scenario might be a neat intro to the streams of thought that entered my mind a few weeks ago, courtesy of this buzz about that region. It involves Hansen of the Mirage Kingdom, the man tried to steal Misty's Togepi to grab the throne for himself. Consider those streams of thought an overall exploration of my view of handling Hoenn, positioning Hansen as a military spymaster with a special taste for disinformation acting against what he considers an imminent catastrophe for his homeland, based on a nightmare he had, undertaking the following activities to that end, if in no specific order.:

    - Persuading Ash and his friends to support his coup and banish Sara;
    - Sealing off the Togepi Paradise altogether, claiming its "protection";
    - Capturing Rayquaza after researching its legend(s);
    - Offering Giovanni exclusive access to any new resources discovered within his kingdom (without being aware of his leadership of Team Rocket);
    - Launching a (regionalized) propaganda campaign portraying Ash as the "Hero of the Mirage Kingdom" all the way to the Hoenn League;
    - Authorizing Tabitha and Shelly, er, Harlan and Isabel to start sabotaging their respective teams and blame the other side

    Suffice to say that by the time Hansen's through, he's influencing, read corrupting, Ash and May's view of the Pokémon world, an outcome more ominous, one might think, than Ash and Dawn's ascendancy in my overarching scenario, the only main Poké-pairing I could envision with such an outcome. I've thought about sharing this with the Advanceshippers, precisely because I've ended up assessing their Poké-pairing as having an aura of tragedy.
    Talk about a new shift... after what I saw throughout Twitter in today's electoral party. The treats on Fox News Channel were fun enough, and I knew exactly what song I wanted to play to commemorate the occasion. Are you doing well in your corner of the world, old friend?
    To think Russian-style secrecy and Islamic-style turbulence might very well have been constant themes in my view of the world this entire time. Many then thought it heralded a generational war, and now, it turns out the Middle East's society, such as it was, has imploded into nothingness, for all intents and purposes, all of which was enough to entrench me with the bronies. You wouldn't believe what I've envisioned, including in recent months regarding a trio of girls looking to spread conflict and hypercompetitiveness at a high school, known as the Dazzlings.
    That's all right. Take all the time you need. It looks like the new main concept supposedly premiering in Kalos has me scratching my temple at a few points. "Mega Evolution", was it called? Oh, well. More curious I find some sort of referendum involving Scotland, which, as I've heard, has Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, Pope Francis, and former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on the same page... against it. Are you doing well on your side of the pond these last few days before that solemn anniversary this upcoming Thursday?
    Hmm... It might be safe to assume that unease will remain a theme from my corner of the world. Are the World War One commemorations going well on your side of the pond, old friend?
    Oh, by the way, it would seem that something else just erupted into my memory under what I've uncovered in the past several months. If Ukraine's continuing to bubble and churn for this week, then the person I'm about to mention has me even more alert than I imagined even hours ago... because he's in your backyard: Gerry Adams. I remembered reading or hearing about the man when I was younger, but you don't have to guess what happened in the intervening years. On the other hand, I suppose this was inevitable after my realization that 24: Live Another Day is projected to premiere tomorrow evening, at least in my humble corner of the world.
    I don't remember mentioning this to you already, but my first instinct with Team Flare's routine involved complaints from Rarity about their fashion sense, or lack thereof, which might say quite a bit about the Equestrians' place in my memory. Methinks that my past overarching scenario made Geekchicshipping the only Kalos Poké-pairing I could plausibly support, and a certain raid in Pakistan three years ago today couldn't have done much to hurt my concentration. I don't about you, but I can't resist getting the impression that the entire planet is growing steadily, even dangerously, close to holding its breath as time marches on, and I'm hearing some concerns from our fellow Pearlshippers about obscurity for this franchise. I'm not certain how my overarching scenario will affect their views, to say nothing of certain other alternate realities I've envisioned during my time in the brony community.
    My fellow bronies appear to have worked themselves into another uproar, this time over a certain set of excerpts, with the deviantART images going from there. On the other hand, some of my instincts just couldn't resist coming up with a sort of mini-scenario pitting Clemont and Serena against Team Flare. Its members would've made a point of proclaiming that they were "fashion freaks, not psychopaths" at any mentions of J or Teams Galactic and Plasma. Once Clemont and Serena encountered Malva at the Kalos League, she would've revealed that Team Flare was a group originally intended to promote her biggest fashion project yet before spiraling beyond her control, persuading her to start working with Kalos' law enforcement apparatus to slowly but steadily bring it down from within... completely reversing, I think, the formula set up with Giovanni and Team Rocket. If it sounds quieter than what I envisioned for Sinnoh and Unova, then that was the point.
    Hmm... So, here I am in the early morning in my corner of the world, watching this current episode, apparently titled "Seeking Shelter from the Storm"... with Cilan's scream from "Scare at the Litwick Mansion" in mind. I thoroughly enjoyed Serena's imagination thus far, and my fellow bronies on Equestria Daily appear to be enjoying themselves with the episode to come later this morning or any convention they currently have in mind. Are you doing well as of now?
    If it's any indication, Dugin's lectures date all the way back to the Soviet Union's dissolution, and thanks to Putin and his former Committee for State Security, or Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti, associates, to heed the warnings of one Ion Mihai Pacepa, he has access to a massive disinformation apparatus capable of engineering crises in Russia's neighborhood. The theory itself appears to combine what he considers the most useful traits of Slavic traditionalism and Stalinism, which can't be good for anyone looking to sign up, culminating in one last showdown with us. The self-enrichment by the oligarchs closest to the Kremlin won't help, either, and Turkey and China could start upping their attention simply because of the sheer size in question. That "letter" reinforces my view that this theorist has a mindset similar to, say, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards, and you and the other Pearlshippers know how their activities influenced my view of Team Galactic. Maybe to drive the point home, the current official name for this new totalitarian ideology is... National Bolshevism, and accusations and propaganda are flying like clockwork in Eastern Europe. My overall assessment is that this is Russia's elite's response to those societal suicides explored in How Civilizations Die, and what an ominous response it's turning out to be.
    (nodding grimly) I understand, old friend. The weather over here in North America appears to be warming up, which could suit some of my fellow bronies just fine. I included some of the info I'm about to describe to you in a comment I typed regarding a contrast with a more tragic, personalistic story inside our community. You might've heard some of the speculation that Vladimir Putin's aiming for a resurrected Soviet Union, which could prove an interesting point. You see, to go by said sources, he's planning something even bigger, literally, with quite likely the most obvious name I can think of: the Eurasian Union. Imagine a geopolitical entity patterned at least supposedly after the European Union, headquartered in Moscow, extending as far west as Germany, southwest as Turkey, south as Iran, and east as the Kuril Islands... and set up as an intentional challenge to the global system created and led by -- who else? -- the United States of America. The main theorist for this project is one Alexander Dugin, who evidently holds no particular grudge against us, unlike certain terror groups, but believes we're two entities completely different enough to clash over the rest of the world. Putin, Dugin, and their associates consider Ukraine the cornerstone of their project, which happens to be the same reason the Ukrainian protesters themselves favored the European Union.
    Uh, by the way, I'm not certain how often you've been hearing about this, but there's a crisis in Ukraine that's starting to make me nervous. You wouldn't believe the info I've accessed over the past few weeks, perhaps dating back several months, to go by some of my past posts with other political junkies on this very site. Are you doing well in your corner of the world?
    I suppose this makes my current position compared to the other Pearlshippers even more notable. My overarching scenario seems to have already given Ash, Dawn, Cilan, and Iris their happy endings, such as they are, among other highlights merging my perception of Pokémon into my perception of those ponies.:

    1. A ponified rendition of Team Rocket's "Double Trouble", featuring certain villainous creatures in the roles played by Jessie, James, Meowth, and Giovanni
    2. A Ponyta nicknamed Twispark and trained until evolving into a Rapidash to commemorate Equestria Daily's 200,000,000th pageview
    3. Another ponified intro, this one for Johto
    4. That scenario ending Pokémon in Unova

    We bronies are demanding sincerity, simplicity, and innocence in a world of societies that have chosen to destroy themselves in order to cause as much damage as possible against anyone perceived as threatening their existence. As I see things, everything I learned from you and the others made my decision to support the ponies at the moment that I did much, much easier than it could otherwise have been. Many bronies started out absolutely detesting it, and I really can't say that I'd blame them. It could factor into the acclaim I've seen surrounding one of those villainous creatures, now seeking to assist the ponies with his powers, for all intents and purposes, but that might be another story.
    I evidently didn't quite give as much thought to Pokémon itself as others did at the start, but as I studied the show as carefully as I could, I grew confident enough in my working knowledge, so to speak, to try my hand at it, by about 2001. By that point, of course, Ash and his friends were in Johto, so I figured I'd start with Gold and Silver... right around Christmastime of that year. You don't have to guess what happened to derail that idea, most grimly. Who knew it would take at least six more years before my interest in this franchise fell under my overarching mission until today? When I made my final assessment of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic's true significance to my memory back in November 2011, I concluded that it was a perfect storm of choices just waiting to happen. What I learned from comparing that franchise's overall timeline with the rest of the world these past three decades strengthened that view. Even now, my fellow bronies are aware that I favor inviting Bonnie Zacherle, My Little Pony's original creator, to a brony convention or even DHX Media, thereby cementing a link between past and future.
    No need to worry, as a certain high-fiving bluenette would put it. My corner of the United States appears to be fairly immune from that vortex, which happens to have more than a few people joking about entries from Mortal Kombat. As for my fellow bronies, they're preparing for this Saturday as only they can, whether on Equestria Daily or beyond. I remember a review I undertook of My Little Pony's timeline in an effort to find out just how a political junkie like myself missed something that old, going back to the days of Ronald Reagan. If My Little Pony encourages emotional sensitivity, then my usual field encourages rational self-interest, a notion that that aforementioned book, titled How Civilizations Die and authored by one David Goldman of Asia Times Online, removed from my equations about international politics. You won't believe how quickly that review turned into an exploration of certain points in my life.
    Phew. I suppose I needed this wake-up call this morning. There's a polar vortex hovering over certain parts of North America, and my fellow bronies are abuzz... over My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic's mounting (pun completely intended) popularity in Japan. The fact that China's zodiac marks this year as the Year of the Horse can't hurt too much, either. Are you doing well on your side of the pond, especially about a decade since you first joined this forum, if I'm not mistaken?
    The speculation surrounding Serena left me scratching my temple more than once, especially considering just how quickly it catapulted past even the current Pearlshipping thread. For my part, if her story about that encounter with Ash at that summer camp holds up, then she'll have had a reason to know him before he became a trainer and thus met Misty and May, respectively. She could very well be shocked -- and heartbroken -- if she realized how close Ash and Dawn had become in my overarching scenario, which could say a few things about its sense of finality. You're the first one with whom I've shared this realization, but Serena's apparent uncertainty and curiosity remind me of Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo, a trio of fillies looking to find their true abilities, taking after the main ponies. As I've shared with a few others, it's no small irony that the cartoon that gave me some attunement to Serena's emotions is the exact same cartoon that took my argument for a bigger role for cuteness in promoting freedom and individuality all the way to its logical conclusion. At the same time, I want to envision Serena as a girl on her own, not just as a new female companion for Ash, following Lauren Faust's idea that "there are lots of different ways to be a girl". To this day, I consider that convergence between my anime interests and my political interests a perfect storm, leaving the fourth season to progress as it currently is.
    As a possible taste, Cilan, Iris, Nate, and Rosa were the main characters, while Cassidy, Butch, Pierce, and Dr. Zager would've been Team Rocket's agents carrying out missions similar to the anime. The split in Team Plasma had an accelerated timetable, and Ghetsis' psychopathy had him ordering an amplified Dragon Pulse that wipes out the entirety of the Skyarrow Bridge in his first appearance to the group, shocking Giovanni into authorizing that quartet to act on their own in order to carry out their goal and stop Team Plasma. Ash and Dawn helped take both villainous groups down, seeing Ghetsis and Giovanni die in the process, and while Nate and Rosa started getting closer and exploring the world together, Cilan and Iris would've stayed behind to assist the cleanup. The last scene in my series finale featured an unknown boy declaring that he'd be a Pokémon Master, just as Ash did in the first episode, without any mishaps.
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