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My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic   Leave a comment

(NOTE: As it has nothing to do with video games, this should not count as one of my 20 posts for my Multimedia Class. However, I do post all my Geek Critiques here.)

It all started on a late night in the dead of summer, when I decided to peruse my Netflix recommendations, and noticed a show that hadn’t been there before.

The program was suggested based on my extremely high ratings of “Doctor Who” and “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” two brilliant shows that my girlfriend introduced me to.

I suppose what happened next may well be her fault.

I decided to give this cartoon a shot. Right from the opening teaser, the animation was striking and charming. It already showed flashes of character depth. This show was trying. This show had heart.

I found a smile on my face 20 seconds in.

Then it faded to the theme song. And I realized what I was getting myself into.

“My Little Pony, My Little Pony, ahh ahh ahh…”

I cringed. This couldn’t happen. This show shouldn’t be worth the time it takes to watch it, let alone something you’d voluntarily subject yourself to.

I saw a pink pony break into song as our protagonist (whose name is TWILIGHT SPARKLE) rolled her eyes in exasperation. I knew we were going to have a problem, here.

I watched another episode. Then another. Then two more.

“My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” was the brainchild of Lauren Faust, a highly-accomplished mogul of animation, whose pedigree includes writing and directing the “Powerpuff Girls.”

When she sat out to revive the long-running “My Little Pony” franchise, she wanted to create a program that cast away every negative stereotype a cartoon for girls is supposed to have: one-dimensional characters overly-obsessed with fashion having completely safe adventures with absolutely no real conflict.

Instead, character interaction would make up the center of every episode. To accomplish that, “Friendship is Magic” would need well-defined, likable and relatable characters with individual strengths and weaknesses.

The result, it was hoped, would be a show that its intended demographic would enjoy, but that parents and older siblings alike would also appreciate.

Like a Pixar movie, the show could appeal to everyone.

Her plan more than succeeded.

Her plan went terrifyingly, horribly right.

Within weeks of “Friendship is Magic’s” first airing in October of 2010, a periphery demographic had gathered together on the internet.

These older fans coined themselves “Bronies,” and their references and in-jokes are a prevalent force within the show.

Through these memes, I was first exposed to “Friendship is Magic,” and their continued prevalence was why I approached it with such an open mind.

No matter what fandom I encountered, there was always a contingent of people who loved “Friendship is Magic.”

I knew an enormous portion of my geek contemporaries loved it, and I had to know what the fuss was about.

Within two weeks, I had watched every episode. A week later, I’d successfully made my girlfriend a brony. (She’d managed to get over her trepidation that it would threaten her masculinity.)
The fandom was… neigh-unavoidable. (I am so, so sorry for that one.)
But the fandom is justified.

“My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” is one of the most optimistic and entertaining experiences I’ve ever had.

It’s the antithesis of cynicism, and I sincerely implore anyone, geek or not, to give it a chance.

As Faust herself said, “I think you’ll be surprised.”

Much like this guy:

Posted October 4, 2012 by positivejosh in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic