Friendship Is Magic - Part 1 (Mare in the Moon)
- Episode aired Oct 10, 2010
After being warned of a horrible prophecy, Princess Celestia sends her overly studious student Twilight Sparkle to Ponyville to supervise the preparations for the Summer Sun Celebration and ... Read allAfter being warned of a horrible prophecy, Princess Celestia sends her overly studious student Twilight Sparkle to Ponyville to supervise the preparations for the Summer Sun Celebration and to "make some friends".After being warned of a horrible prophecy, Princess Celestia sends her overly studious student Twilight Sparkle to Ponyville to supervise the preparations for the Summer Sun Celebration and to "make some friends".
"Friendship is Magic" is the two part pilot episode, of which this is the first part called "Mare in the Moon". While better was to come since, this was a very promising start. Sure, there is a finding its feet feel in both parts, though the second part fares stronger, but that is understandable. Can think of not an awful lot of shows that settled straight away, there are personal favourites that took a few episodes or so to find their groove while still being more than watchable and that is the case here.
Where "Friendship is Magic: Part 1" doesn't feel as settled is in some of the characterisation, again understandable as this is only the pilot/first episode. Rainbow Dash and Spike agreed are less developed compared to some of the others and are not particularly interesting yet.
Pacing could have tightened at times.
On the other hand, there is so much going for "Friendship is Magic: Part 1" and there are a lot of elements that do feel settled straightaway. Am not always a fan of Flash animation, but this show has always been one of the better examples. The occasional statically animated characters in the background, the animation is very good here. The colours are bright and breezy, the backgrounds are ethereal-looking and the character designs are adorable. The music has presence but never over-bears what is going on. Some people dislike the theme song or find it a take or leave it one, to me it's quite infectious, though the songs that 'My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic' has make more impact.
The writing is also highly impressive for such an early stage. The humour is very funny and very winning without being cheesy or juvenile, to me this is one of the aspects of the show that renders the misconception of adults not being able to enjoy this false. If anything, adults are actually more likely to get the humour and find it funnier. The emotion is there too and not in a sentimental way and some of the content has relevance and doesn't feel forced, even if the second part has more of a lesson and more highlight moments. The story is clever and neither too complex or too simple, for so early on its ambition and how remarkably well established it is already is remarkable.
Rainbow Dash and Spike aside, the characters are engaging and are more than just cute little ponies. Their personalities are already well rounded and contrasted, especially Celestia and Twilight Sparkle. They also interact so well with each other, nothing over the top or static here. The voice acting plays a large part in how good much of the characterisation is. Tara Strong is the most famous name, and she is one of the best and deservedly most in demand voice actors today, her voice acting is deeply felt. Nicole Oliver's storybook-like narrator, Ashleigh Ball's Applejack and Tabitha St Germain's Nightmare Moon also stand out.
Summarising, very promising start and not to be watched with any prejudice or false conceptions. 8/10
- May 24, 2019