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My Little Pony

Furry Movie Award Watch: October 2013

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It’s a bad year when the movie I’d most like to see win Best Animated Feature, Ernest and Celestine, takes that position sight unseen. Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises is also sight unseen, and, let’s face it, a biopic about an engineer, which doesn’t sound terribly exciting on paper.

DreamWorks put out one okay movie, one terrible movie. Disney has been putting out trailers that are actually hiding the movie’s genre (musical) and are hard to watch, too. Pixar may win it just for being Pixar again. No scrappy newcomer like Rango has emerged.

So, let’s talk about the Ursa Majors instead.

Ponies Have Been Around A While

Believe it or not, since its inception in the early 1980′s, the My Little Pony line of toys has had an active (even rabid!) fandom of collectors following it — long before the current Twilight Sparkle and her cohorts took over the world from their base on The Hub. Now available in print again in paperback is The World of My Little Pony: An Unauthorized Guide for Collectors (whew!) by Debra L. Birge and Ann Stroth.  From Amazon, here’s the publisher’s plug: “This is the first comprehensive collector’s identification and value guide to My Little Pony. These popular toys were made from 1981 to 1991 and are attracting the interest of collectors around the world. Over 300 color photographs clearly identify over 600 My Little Ponies, some of which are extremely rare. In addition to the ponies, hundreds of related items sold under the MLP logo are shown. A very helpful index of all the ponies featured in the book and a handy price guide with beautifully detailed photography makes this book a must for every My Little Pony lover.” Interestingly, this book was first published by Schiffer Books For Collectors back in 2007 — well before the current My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic craze hit. Isn’t it time for an update?

Friendship in Pairs

IDW just keeps expanding their own little corner of the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic universe — and fandom. Now in January we have a new on-going series, My Little Pony: Friends Forever. “This collection, based on the animated hit series, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, airing on the Hub Network, will be made up of one-shot stories that focus on different pairs of ponies getting into various hijinx and will feature a mix of new creators as well as old favorites.” Sorry folks, no “shipping” allowed! Find out more at IDW’s web site. The first full-color issue of My Little Pony: Friends Forever (featuring none other than Applejack and Pinkie Pie) is written by Alex De Campi and illustrated by Carla Speed McNeil (Finder) with a cover by Amy Mebberson.

image c. 2013 IDW Publishing

Merry Christmas and a Blessed Solstice to you all, from ^^


Review: 'My Little Pony: The Magic Begins', by Lauren Faust and Justin Eisinger

Your rating: None Average: 3.8 (5 votes)

My Little Pony: The Magic Begins I feel that reviewing this is like preaching to the converted, but here goes.

If you have somehow missed out on the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic TV animation phenomenon so far, here is a good place to start. This book – and it is a cute little booklet, appropriate to the TV cartoon series; only 6.8” x 5” and brimming with color on glossy paper – is a graphic-novel adaptation of the two-part Friendship is Magic pilot episode broadcast on October 10 and 22, 2010. The story is by Lauren Faust, MLP:FIM’s creator, adapted into graphic-novel form by Justin Eisinger. Other credits are on the title page. This booklet consists of stills from the two TV cartoons with speech-balloon overlays; about as close to putting an animated cartoon onto paper as you can get. If you do not have a videotape or DVD of the first two episodes, this will enable you to have them.

IDW Publishing is the publisher of the MLP:FIM regular comic book, but this booklet is not a regular comic book. It is a cross between a standard American comic book and a Japanese tankōbon paperback, shrunk to about half-size, in glossy full-color on slick paper; more like the paperback photo-novels of Doctor Who, Star Blazers, or Star Trek episodes than a collection of comic-book issues.

“My Little Pony: The Magic Begins”, by Lauren Faust (author) and Justin Eisinger (adapter).
San Diego, CA, IDW Publishing, October 2013, trade paperback $7.99 (124 pages).

Friendship is in The Cards

The first My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic collectible card game officially sanctioned by Hasbro is being released very soon by Enterplay. The Two-Player Starter Set is available now for ordering, and it’ll be shipping in January. “Build your decks around one of the Mane characters and build a separate problem deck.  Race to solve (yours and your opponent’s) problems to earn points.  First person to 15 points wins.” According to the publicity we’ve read, that makes it sound a lot simpler to master than it actually is!  (Kind of like… friendship.) Check out the Enterplay site for more information.

image c. 2013 Enterplay

Three comic book reviews: Pull List #17 ('MLP' and 'TMNT')

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It’s another IDW sweep, with two Micro-Series issues (Pinkie Pie and Old Hob are featured this time around), and another Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles issue. Ben Bates returns; he’s the artist behind the aforementioned Pinkie Pie story, despite the fact that I pointed him out as a positive in earlier issue of TMNT. His art, however, makes a cameo in the TMNT issue; but more on that when we get to it. First, let’s see what Pinkie Pie’s up to, shall we?

My Little Pony: Micro-Series #5 featuring Pinkie Pie My Little Pony: Micro-Series #5 featuring Pinkie Pie

Normally I finish with whatever art comments I make (and I usually don’t make a lot of those), but since I’ve already talked about the artist, I might as well start there this time around. Bates is right at home in funny animal comics; besides TMNT, he’s also done Sonic the Hedgehog. Here, he’s a bit tied down by the fact that Pinkie Pie has to look like Pinkie Pie, after all; his backgrounds are also a bit simplistic, and could use more detail.

The story revolves around Pinkie Pie winning a contest by drinking 315 bottle of Colta Cola (no wonder she’s always wiggling around like she’s in desperate need of a bathroom on the show) to win a ticket with backstage passes to the great clown Ponyacci’s show. It turns out, however, Ponyacci is on the verge of retirement; Pinkie Pie is completely upset by this turn of events.

There are a couple of solid jokes in this issue; Pinkie talking to her Ponyacci doll is so in character, I can hear Andrea Libman’s voice while reading it. Twilight Sparkle plays straight mare for Pinkie; ironically, when Pinkie only wins two tickets, she doesn’t angst about it like Twilight does in a similar situation. Finally, it’s nice to see clowns and clown dolls played so straight (well, you know what I mean); we live in a world where vampires are protagonists for children’s cartoons, but there are not one, but two horror franchises based around killers who take the guise of dolls with playful catchphrases. Pinkie Pie knows what I’m talking about.

Applejack Month 2013 Newsbytes archive

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Applejack Month - take a letter crossaffliction, what are you doing? You can't post all those @$#%ing Newsbytes.

Contributors this October include Chipotle, dronon, Fred, GreenReaper, Higgs Raccoon, Kakurady, Patch Packrat, RingtailedFox and Sonious.

Upcoming furry comics for October 2013 (Previews and Marvel Previews)

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Furry comics to make the Previews top 100 best-selling comic books list for June include:beboprocksteady.jpg

The most obscure 'My Little Pony' nod ever

Your rating: None Average: 3.7 (6 votes)

Do you see it? Fans of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic are well aware of its penchant for pop culture references; some are odd for a show about talking ponies. The recent Equestria Girls movie, for example, quoted dance moves from Pulp Fiction and featured a sly reference to the Stephen King novel and Brian de Palma movie Carrie. Then there’s the famous Big Lebowski ponies from the episode “The Cutie Pox.”

However, last year, the ponies themselves became an obscure nod in Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill’s The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Vol. III. While we’re on the subject, we might as well take a look back at Vol. II, which features an odd genesis story for the modern furry genre. A new television series based on the comics is coming, after all; might the ponies and furries follow?

Three comic book reviews: Pull List #15 ('MLP')

Your rating: None Average: 3 (2 votes)

Like a Rainbow in the dark, whoops, that's not Pink Floyd song ...I’ll see you on the dark side of the moon.”
- Pink Floyd, “Brain Damage

Wait, oops. Sorry about that.

The song quote is my My Little Pony DVD review shtick, not my comic book review shtick. I got confused for a moment because, for this set, I decided to review three My Little Pony issues. That way, all you pony fans can get excited, while all you non-pony fans have one convenient place for all your one-stars! Everybody wins! Yay!

Three comic book reviews: Pull List #14 ('Avengers Arena,' 'MLP' and 'TMNT')

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Art by kunaikeI recently learned that Marvel’s superhero MMO Marvel Heroes will feature a playable Squirrel Girl (as well as Rocket Raccoon), voiced by Tara Strong. That means that Doreen Green and Twilight Sparkle have the same voice, and that’s awesome. So, since I’ve got a Marvel title and a My Little Pony title this time around, I decided to share that tidbit, and dig up some ”Squirrel Girl as a pony” art to go with it.

Three comic book reviews: Pull List #13 ('Guardians of the Galaxy,' 'MLP:FiM' and 'TMNT')

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From a personal standpoint, the shipment of comic books I got from my supplier (long overdue shout-out to Wichita’s Prairie Dog Comics) that make up this Pull List and the next was a heck of a lot of fun; it may have been my favorite yet.

Some books, such as Avengers Arena, Guardians of the Galaxy, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, I’ll be featuring. Others aren’t really furry enough, but I’ll just say X-Men Legacy and Young Avengers were pretty darn good this time around as well.

Upcoming furry comics for September 2013 (Previews and Marvel Previews)

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Furry comics that made the top 100 best-seller’s list for May 2013 include:

See also: June 2013, July 2013, August 2013

Review: 'My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic - Adventures in the Crystal Empire' DVD (with bonus Season 1 DVD review)

Your rating: None Average: 3 (7 votes)

Adventures in the Crystal EmpireI can see every part, nothing hides in the heart to hurt me.”
- Shirley Bassey, “Diamonds Are Forever

I think I need to be clear if I am going to continue reviewing My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic; I do not watch this show for the plot.

I don’t mean I don’t find the various ponies sexually attractive, though that’s also true. I know, it surprised me too. I’m not much of a butt guy, for one thing (you poop with those, that’s not sexy), and I have a strict “two legs good, four legs bad” policy about cartoon animals, Nala from The Lion King being the only exception, of course (though I guess kangaroos could be problematic).

Not only is the plot of the show not altogether very interesting, plots in general aren’t very interesting. To bring this review’s song quote into the mix, plot is what Bond villains do; the interesting thing is what happens when a character such as Bond stumbles into this plot and starts shooting the villain’s henchmen in the face.

That’s why I watch this show; characters and gratuitous violence. Allow me to explain in this DVD’s episode breakdown.

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