Fluttershy must overcome her fears to stop a dragon from filling Ponyville with smoke.Fluttershy must overcome her fears to stop a dragon from filling Ponyville with smoke.Fluttershy must overcome her fears to stop a dragon from filling Ponyville with smoke.
On the most part, up to this early point of the season and show, this only being the seventh episode of the twenty six in Season 1, the standard was very high. "Elements of Harmony" (the second part of the two part "pilot") and "Applebuck Season" being especially great of the previous episodes. The season and show did stumble in quality though with its first disappointment "Boast Busters", to me a lesser episode of the early seasons. By all means it was not terrible, a long way from it, but for a show that was starting to settle so well it should have been better. Things are back on form though with the best episode up to this point "Dragonshy".
Don't be put off by that "Dragonshy's" story is a simple one. This was actually an example of something where the story being simple working in its favour. It didn't bother me at all either that the outcome was not a surprising one, because it was so well done, did make me proud and moved and was a turning point in character for one pony in particular. A turning point that was not out of character in any way, not like Applejack or Rainbow Dash in "Boast Busters" and gave them some much needed development.
Something that "Dragonshy" excels brilliantly in. It never fails to amaze me at how rich the character development is in 'My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic', which more than makes up for any stories being potentially too predictable or simplistic ("Dragonshy" just about avoids both). This has some of the best and most relatable characterisation of the show up to this early stage, it was high time Fluttershy got some development and did relate to her situation even when she was unintentionally bothering everybody, in quite inventive and amusing ways actually, and then there is one pivotal and brilliantly written scene where she comes into her own in a way one doesn't expect from her and one admires and is touched by her. Thankfully it didn't feel rushed either, another danger with character development.
The other ponies have shining moments, especially with their ways of fooling the dragon and their consequences. But it's Fluttershy that sticks out here. Love the chemistry between the ponies and how powerful their friendship is, it is easy to tell that they care for each other even when something bad happens. The moral as ever is a sincere and educational one, a good one to teach youngsters early on.
Once again, the animation is great and is getting better all the time. The bright colours, meticulously detailed and often elegant backgrounds and adorable but never too cute character designs still appeals. The music has presence but never over-bears what is going on. Personally don't have a problem with the theme song, am aware some find it take it or leave it. Much more infectious and memorable though is Pinkie Pie's song. The voice acting continues to impress, the most emotive coming from Andrea Libman as Fluttershy.
In conclusion, wonderful and among the better episodes of Season 1. 10/10
- Jun 13, 2019