Princess Twilight Sparkle is called to Las Pegasus to attend the last Great Equestrian Bake-Off, accompanied by Applejack, Pinkie Pie, and Seville Orange. Instead of food and good-natured competition, they find themselves deeply entrenched in a convoluted mess of tribalism, government mandated fairness, a dying element of earth pony culture, and what just might be the remnants of the Great Equestrian Dream, a unity that might have never existed.
Thus begins the story of Twilight's attempt to smash the system, forgetting that she is the system.
This story contains examples of:
- Adult Fear:
- Being treated as a sex object. Bundt Buttercream, as a fertile Earth pony mare and pornography actress, was often assumed that she wants to have sex with other ponies, or that she was Playing Hard to Get, and would even get groped in public. She finds it demeaning, and befriends Twilight and her friends because they treated her with respect and dignity.
- Blintz fires Bundt after she introduces the baking contestants to Twilight Sparkle, which already puts Bundt's financial prospects as a single mother on the fritz. The fact that Blintz won't hesitate to send security after a heavily pregnant mare if she continues to stay on the premises makes Twilight teleport Bundt to her friends' room and task Applejack with bodyguarding Bundt.
- Double Standard: The whole 'Exceptional Earth ponies are a credit to their tribe' kerfuffle that continues to plague Equestria. This situation doesn't occur with pegasi or unicorns.
- Fantastic Racism: Earth pony tribalism is heavily showcased here. Because Earth ponies are generally laborers, farmers, and/or cooks, those who manage to become great ponies are seen as exceptions to the whole tribe, and tend to be reduced to footnotes in history while unicorns and pegasi get pages for themselves. Seville laments how ponies still see him as the luggage carrier while his unicorn and pegasus assistants are praised as journalists. Furthermore,Bundt reveals that several ponies in Equestria are planning to mechanize the work force and hire unicorn workers instead, putting many Earth ponies out of a job.
- Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Well, Bundt's a former porn star who left to be a proper mother to her foals, but she still retains her flirtatiously good nature.
- Innocently Insensitive: The Cakes' decision to hire Sugar Belle, a unicorn mare, as an apprentice in Sugarcube Corner is seen as rather insensitive, as it leaves Pinkie, their longtime employee who's also an Earth pony, feeling like she's being replaced. It's unknown whether the Cakes know of the damage they're inflicting or not.
- It's Personal: After Twilight gives her a brutal "The Reason You Suck" Speech, Blintz goes out of her way to make Twilight and her allies suffer. She even fires her assistant, Bundt Buttercream, for introducing Twilight to the Bake-Off contestants.
- Motivational Lie: After Bundt is suddenly taken off the air for talking about Twilight, Blintz tries to convince the baking contestants that her water broke, given she's heavily pregnant at the time. Twilight doesn't buy it, and soon discovers that Blintz actually fired her.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Twilight Sparkle unleashes an absolutely brutal one on Bourgogne Blintz, utterly deconstructing her Motive Rant about being a Self-Made Man, and informing her of the real atrocities that ponies have directly fought to protect others from suffering them. It results in Blintz holding a deep grudge against Twilight.
- Self-Made Man: Bourgogne Blintz claims to have been one in her Motive Rant. Twilight suspects otherwise, and launches a "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
- Would Hurt a Child: After she's fired, Bundt Buttercream confides to Twilight Sparkle that Blintz won't hesitate to send security after her if she continues to stay on the premises, which would present a great risk for Bundt's unborn foals if the security were to rough her up in some way. Twilight promptly teleports Bundt to her friends' room enlists Applejack to protect Bundt out of fear for the mare's safety.
- You Are a Credit to Your Race: Discussed; Seville, Applejack, and Pinkie mention how hypocritical and tribalist this way of thinking is. When unicorns and/or pegasi become great ponies, society focuses on their achievements. But when Earth ponies do it, they're seen as exceptions to the norm.