Review, Opinions, Conspiracies, and More
The Written Synopsis of a Fandom Gone Wrong
My Little Pony, or MLP as it's known by people who like acronyms, is a show that takes place in the magical world of Equestria and centers around a social book toting outcast named Twilight Sparkle on her never-ending question to not only make friends, but support them. The show is very kid friendly where each episode is its own independent story where one of Twilight's friends, or Twilight herself, faces a difficulty and, through loyalty and the connection they have with one another, the problem meets resolution end of the twenty-minute episode which is then tied up in a thirty-second briefing in a monologue narrated by the show's main character.
This review isn't written based on the episodes, but more about the two-part pilot episode that introduces the series as well as the pilot episodes of the other seasons where something usually happening that's far beyond just a normal friend struggle. What I'm looking at here isn't why the show is popular, kids are always a great demographic to sell to, but why it's popular to adults. Men, women, many people in many situations love this show. Of course, this brings the question about why these adults find it appealing.
I'm going to start by making a few points. First, I'm not here to bash anyone's fandom, I find some things I like about the show and some things that I do not, this review is non-subjective towards people enjoying and disliking the program. I'm approaching this as a reviewer and that's all. Second, the review is still comical where I'm going to point out some major flaws, politically and otherwise, that comes about from this show. If you're not a fan of laughing at things you like, this review may not appeal for you.
The Luna/Celestia Struggle
We learn in the first few minutes of the show the history that turned into legend over the course of time. The legend is about two pony princesses that controlled the sun and moon. Celestia was in charge of the day, and her sister Luna ruled over the night. Luna became unhappy with how their subjects would sleep through the night that she worked so hard for and decided that she would just make it eternal night. After a bit of a fight, Celestia locked her sister away in the moon that served her with the belief that she would escape and return one day.
The show takes place on the day when Luna escapes, but there are some issues with this. During the show none of the pony's remember that Luna even exists. Now I ask you to consider a few names, Hitler, Gangus Khan, Jack the Ripper, these are names of people who are known throughout history for the terrible things that they did in their life and they will likely be remembered throughout history. How much more impressive would it have been if they were able to magically turn day into night? Something so drastically terrible that could potentially destroy the planet by killing all the plants needed for life to work, and nobody remembers her. If she guilty of her accusations then people would remember her and instead she returns and nobody can name her at all.
There's another possibility here, something that people don't consider often. It's said that the victor writes the history books and having locked her sister away in the moon Celestia would be able to simply tell her subjects any story she wanted to excuse why Luna was no longer there. What I believed happened was that Celestia realized the power over the sun, but wished to have power over the moon as well and banished her sister to acquire this. Now people are going to question this, but all Celestia has to say is that her sister is abroad and after a few hundred years people would start to question what happened to Luna and she gave this story. Everyone that was alive when it supposedly happened would be dead by then, so who's going to argue?
If viewing this show, keep in mind a simple belief that many people share to help intensify the experience. Watch the show under the impression that Celestia is secretly evil and trying to use her favorite student to further control her subjects and watch over them. The program becomes much more enlightening with this impression.
Near Blatant Sexism
It's fully understandable that My Little Pony is actually a show for young girls. Being this the program doesn't need any kind of focus on male characters meaning because girls want to see girls doing great things. Now there's nothing wrong with that and the issue that this derives from is actually due to the art style for every pony being relatively the same. There is no way to tell the difference between men and women in this world and the ponies that are given an announced male gender are all service animals. What does this tell us? That Friendship is Magic is very sexist.
The best example here is when Twilight starts off her quest in the service of the queen and arrives at a scene called Ponyville to check on their festivities for the upcoming celebration they're having. She carried down to the town drawn by two ponies and addresses them as Sir's. Pridefully they neigh and snort at her. They could have responded with a, You Welcome, or really any dialogue at all, but instead the script writer decided that this was the time to express that these are just animals.
We see other aspects of sexism on the apple farm where the only primary male lead is actually a work horse whose job is to pull a cart around all day and gather apples. Again, he's a service animal just like the guard ponies before. Later on in the series we find out that Twilight even has a brother who is the captain of the guard, but that is completely overshadowed when you realize that even as a guard he's still in the service of a princess, and even Pinky Pie's father works with Mrs. Pie who owns the shop they work in.
In My Little Pony there are no male characters placed in any place of authority. Even in the third season pilot when the was a male pony who claims control over the Crystal Kingdom, in a flashback, he's given the role as villain for that time. Also Discord, who is not a pony is a male and the pilot villain of the second season. This gets the point across that boys should willingly be in the service of girls, working below them and catering to them happily, and if they refuse and strive to climb up that social ladder, or ignore it completely, then they are evil.
In the end, is it a bad show? No, it's not a bad show at all. Its approach is to try to teach girls life lessons about friendship, caring, and other important things so that they can grow up strong and compassionate human beings. It also provides a few under the rug jokes for any adults forced to sit through it, but the program meets its target audience well enough. Sure it might include some content that will jump-start the feminist uprising, or even go down in history as the one and only show that caused hundreds of fans to question the border lines of bestiality, but all those people effected by either of those issues are not the target audience for the show. It's a program for girls, so that they can get sucked into a fantasy world where magic exists and people are far more than courteous to one another.
All in all, the show is watchable. It's not something I'm ever going to obsess over, but if someone else has it on when I visit their house I'll sit through it. The final verdict is that it's decent, as far as shows go. While it is fun to pick on make up conspiracies for, maybe that just adds to the appeal of it all.