There has been a notable drop in viewership since The Hub became Discovery Family. It seems that they cut back on advertising/marketing the show. To that point; this week's episode will premier in about 12 hours and all we got was an still image drowned in the wave of Comic Con Stuff. No trailers. Very little hype on the official channels.
I don't think that's what caused it, though. I think it simply wasn't ready.
Still, we got some good amount of stuff for the Later Half of Season 5 from Comic Con.
Everything down here is obviously spoilers:
[spoil]Season 6 is still in production. They're in the recording stage now.
You-know-who confirmed to return for the you-know-what. Time Travel will likely be involved.
The plot for the finale is dropped during the interview.
Sunset Shimmer's hypothetical Element: Empathy
They're interested in working with Derpy and Whooves, but not in a parody of Dr. Who as to avoid infringement.
First Half of Season 5 hits Netflix at the end of the month ... pretty much confirming tomorrow's episode will be the last for now.
Discord confirmed for Equestria Girls. We also got Cadance earlier this week if you missed it.
Fluttershy's first relative will appear later in the season.
Hearthwarmers pretty much confirmed to be an Apple Family/Christmas Episode.
A plot involving the Mane 6 confronting their fears has been confirmed. That's presumably " Scare-Master ".
And ... we get my favorite part which is a beautiful song in the second animatic. Also it has to be kind of rough being an adult pony without a Cutie Mark. [/spoil]
Here it is, folks. Our mid-Season Finale and the last episode before the hiatus.
Oh boy did it deliver the goods.
[spoil] ... what?
It's weird that they only recycled some of the footage from the Princess Twilight Sparkle transformation of Nightmare Moon.
Oh look. Rainbow Power.
And with their ability to go Rainbow at will we have gone full DBZ up in this little girl's cartoon.
Yes Spike. You are unimportant.
Geeze. For wanting to utilize Celestia more (Comic Con Interview) they sure do make excuses not to utilize her.
" There is nothing my sister can do " ... to the surprise of nopony.
Ah. I see where this is going. It'll take about 10 more minutes to get there, though.
STOP NOT HELPING, PINKIE.
Bait. That is bait, Fluttershy.
So unsurprisingly Luna fails -- and is a dramatic ham about her failure.
YOU ARE REALLY NOT HELPING, PINKIE.
I feel like the girls taking time to help the townspeople even though they're not really in danger in the Dream World is a homage to Marvel Movies.
Almost-Princess Big Mac!
OH! + This is Amazing
For those who missed it, Mac's Transformation and Music are a homage to Sailor Moon which was one of the big inspirations behind Friendship is Magic
The thing with Spike was a cute throwback
Pinkie tells ponies to help. Does not contribute to the battle despite her wild imagination.
I thought Rarity using her Power Pony Power but not transforming was an error, but then I realized that this was the Dream World so it's technically possible
tl;dr version - Stop hitting/hating yourself, Luna.
Some part of me wishes that now that Princess Luna has apparently forgiven herself we will never have to deal with the Nightmare Moon Angst again ... but then I remembered that children's cartoons don't really work that way. [/spoil]