Yep, I'm reviewing MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC. The only thing I know about MLP is that my sister collected those toys, with 1 point of articulation (the neck), in the late 80s. Well, I also know there's a cult following for the new show, which this comic is based on, which includes older folks referred to as "Bronies." Anyway, let's dive right in.
My main concern, going in, is whether or not this book would be able to appeal both to the kids that love the show and the adults that follow the cult. While I've never seen Friendship is Magic, I can say, without a doubt, this does have the appeal to both demographics.
This comic has a lot of humor that really appeals to the older folks picking this up. It makes a few references to some memes, and it's bizarre, off-the-wall sense of humor, which can be found in many contemporary cartoons, really appealed to me. I never really had any "laugh out loud" moments, but strangely, I did smile a lot at this book, and all-in-all, that's what matters to me as a reader.
As a book for kids, I also feel the first chunk of this book was great for them. Right away, you get some new words to throw into your vocabulary like "zoologists" and "hippology," and we also get that off-the-wall humor and random cut-aways that we see featured in so many cartoons now-a-days, like to an unkempt mule, which was by far my favorite part of this issue. Writer Katie Cook does a great job here making this issue accessible to so many different types of readers.
Was I entertained? You're darn tootin! Sorry. This issue was a ton of fun, and I'm proud to say that. Sure, I may not know who any of these characters are, and I'm a tad confused about the world they lived in, but I went along for the ride and it was great. I found myself loving little elements of this book like when the characters say "everypony" instead of "everybody."
Guess what else I loved about this book? The art. Andy Price (art) and Heather Breckel (colors) do a beautiful job here. This book is darn right pretty and full of the perfect amount of detail. I was actually pretty stunned with the amount of work that went into the art here, since quite a few kid's books usually focus on the characters and not too much else.
The last two pages of this issue ruin the flow of the book. It moves along very well, up until the reader is hit with a massive wall of dialogue where the Ponies battle back and forth in a decision on whether or not to go after the bad guy. It needed to be a tad shorter. I feel like they won the battle, so they should wrap it up quickly and go on their way. This was the only time I felt like I was losing interest in the book.
Ok... so are there male and female ponies or are they all some sort of unisex being? The first few pages really confused me because I didn't know the ponies' names and I couldn't connect the names to the ponies. Captions would have really helped new readers here. Lastly, the title on the first page was layed out poorly and it was very hard to read.
Here's the weird part. I would have never, in a million years, read this book if I wasn't assigned to review it; however, I'm really happy I did. I've never been a hater of the Brony movement or the show in general. It's just something that never appealed to me. I feel weird saying this, but this comic appeals to me. It's fun, zany, and it put a big, dumb smile on my face. I could sit back in my chair, give it a read through, and have a good time, and that's what reading comics should be about.
I don't know how I feel about recommending this to the masses, but heck, if an old, cynical, heartless jerk like myself can find enjoyment in the wonderfully-drawn book, then everyone else should be able to as well, right?
Overall, I learned that friendship is magic, and I highly recommend this issue.