My Little Pony
Sorry for the delay, folks; I know all five of my regular readers were on pins and needles (hi, mom!). See, GreenReaper emailed to tell me that Fred had linked back to my Cinderella review on the new Cartoon Research site, and just like the time he emailed me about some video game site which quoted my Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 review, my computer died. Obviously, there's some connection here. Anyway, it's all their fault. Shame on you guys.
Q: Could you give us a brief introduction?
Chris: [...rattles off storyboarding, animation, writing and directing credits for shows noted in his Wikipedia article, including Rocko's Modern Life, Ren & Stimpy, Dexter's Lab and The Powerpuff Girls...], written a few episodes of My Little Pony, which is probably what some of you care about - it's so cool to see people who appreciate what you've done; we're so sheltered by TV, we never get to see you, so for all of you, the full house.
Ursula: Ursula Vernon, artist and author; did finally finish the webcomic Digger, which won the Hugo Award for Best Graphic Series . . . I do a series for children called Dragonbreath, 8-12ish, I also do a lot of art, I do furry art, I go to furry conventions, I love you people man . . . *applause* . . . and that's sot of what I do.
Sprout: So Chris, you've done a lot of awesome TV shows, so what exactly have you done for each of those throughout your career?
This coming June, IDW will release something new and special for the myriad fans of their very popular My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic line of comics. The My Little Pony “Color Me” Treasury Edition is a special reprint of the first issue of IDW’s My Little Pony in black and white, showcasing the inking work of artist Andy Price. In addition, this collection brings together all 48 versions (!!) of the various covers for issues #1 – #4 of the comic (the first story arc). Previews magalog has a first look at this upcoming collection.
For this set of reviews, I didn’t deviate much from last month; I just swapped out one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Secret History of the Foot Clan issues for a plain old issue of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #4
If you were to chart the highs and lows of this first arc of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, the trajectory would look like a single beat of a normal heart on one of those heart monitors. Issue #1 would be right down the middle, nothing too special, nothing too bad, then issue #2 spiking to grand heights of funny animal comics, before an equal spike in the opposite direction following issue #3’s needlessly dark depths. Finally, this issue comes and, well, it’s nothing too special, nor too bad.
Previews for May featured an interview with Stan Sakai; he’s finishing up 47 Ronin soon and looking forward to getting back to Usagi Yojimbo. Before that, though, he mentions that he wants to do a non-canonical mini-series featuring the ronin rabbit versus the Martians from The War of the Worlds. So that’s something to look forward to.
Also, remember Free Comic Book Day is Saturday, May 4.
The TV series My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is already famous for having inspired a wellspring of creativity in many forms, including art, stories, music, and much more. Now it seems to have reached a particular peak, as a group of “Bronies” around the country have joined forces to create Double Rainboom — the first fully-animated, fully fan-created episode of the show. With the blessings of Hasbro and DHX Media, Zachary Rich (known as Flamingo Rich) and his friends at the Savannah College of Art and Design have created a real, 22-minute episode as part of his senior project in animation. That’s real as in an orchestral score, voice actors for all of the characters, high-quality sound effects, and more. The plot? Twilight Sparkle (pre-wings) develops a magic potion — which has an interesting effect on Rainbow Dash. The entire film will be released to the world on March 30th. You can visit the Double Rainboom web site to keep up with the crew’s progress.
Treesong used to complain about zombie comic books a lot; he’d not be happy to see The Walking Dead #100 take the #1 spot on the December sales list. I guess Image was all like, “My Little Pony beat us as the number one non-Marvel-or-DC book last month? And they don’t even have a book out this month? Well, I guess we’ll just have to beat everybody instead!”
This issue, IDW sweeps the board, with My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #3 and the first two installments of the latest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles mini-series, “The Secret History of the Foot Clan,” which tells the secret history of the Foot Clan. Turns out they were a parody of Marvel’s Hand ninjas all along!
The A cover for this issue of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic looks like a really, really rejected Marvel Secret Invastion crossover cover from a few years back. At least it gives you some kind of warning; heaven help you if you got the B cover, featuring Twilight Sparkle and Pinkie Pie happily ice skating. I may have juxtaposed Hack/Slash with this series last time, but I’m just kidding around. Apparently some like their ponies like their coffee; black and bitter.
Alright, I am caught up with my Pull List series; nothing old I need to catch up on. Pull List #8 (or even #9, if someone finally takes up my offer to contribute) will consist entirely of comic books released in 2013. The good news is that most of these comics are also pretty fresh.
Brian Harris is a graphic artist who, as of late, has been moving increasingly into 3D work — thanks in large part to the ever-expanding technology of 3D Printing available at sites like Shapeways. Working under the name Timothy BH, Brian has been selling sculptures of Goldie Pheasant from Rock-A-Doodle and Spike the dragon from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, as well as others… and he intends to start taking commissions soon. Check out his Shapeways Shop to see his current work and find out how to keep up with his latest creations.
Wal-Mart, you have failed me.
At this point in time, I should be reviewing the “Adventures in the Crystal Empire” DVD, but the closest Wal-Mart decided not to stock that one, so I had to order it online. Meanwhile, they managed to put out the “Pinkie Pie Party” DVD, but in such small numbers that it sold out instantly. I missed a copy.
Once again, you see what I have to work with here?
So, I’m stuck reviewing this older DVD which I had to drive hundreds of miles to get a copy of. No really, I drove to a Barnes and Noble hundreds of miles away to obtain my copy.
This issue, we take a look at the best-selling comic book about ponies ever, catch up on IDW’s other funny animal comic book series, and end with a brand new Marvel mutant with the ability to turn into a shark — because superheroes do believable stuff like that now!
During the early eighties, the FCC began to back off on restrictions on advertisements in children’s television, despite pressure from parents’ groups to apply more. The upshot was a series of Saturday morning cartoons (as well as other children’s shows) that were nothing but glorified commercials for various toy lines.
Hasbro was one of the companies involved in selling chunks of plastic to kids who could then nag their parents via the magic of animation. To be entirely fair, their products were probably the most artistically valid at the time, which I should stress was not saying much. Most of their shows have had a remarkable shelf life, long after the need to sell toys have gone.
In 1986, Hasbro had two movies hitting theaters based on their toylines; Transformers: The Movie and My Little Pony: The Movie, with a G.I. Joe: The Movie planned for 1987. However, both became massive box office flops, and G.I. Joe was sent direct to video. While Transformers quietly went on to become an animated cult hit, My Little Pony, well, didn’t.
The reason for this is simple; it’s not a very good movie. But looking at it today, it offers insights into why the newest incarnation of the property, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, has followed in Transformers: The Movie footsteps to become its own animated cult hit, as well as why bad movies are bad in general.
Previews runs a top 100 best selling monthly comics list; they’re obviously a bit behind, as this issue contains November’s. My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #1 was ranked at 15, making it the most bought book not from DC or Marvel. So, way to go bronies!
Here’s what’s coming up in February next year, for those of you who buy comic books. For those of you who don’t, I guess you can skip this one.