Back in 2010, My Little Pony Friendship is Magic aired on the hub network. It premiered with a humble two parter with charming animation about making friends and punching evil in the face with rainbows. What followed was a slice of life show that brought in a surprising demographic no one could have predicted; adults of a largely male persuasion. Throughout its nine year run, there’s been 9 seasons, plenty of spin offs and movies, a theatrical movie with another to follow soon, mobile games, a manga, a really good comic series, and so much more. Nearly all of it lovingly crafted and brought to life by a talented and passionate group of writers, voice actors, and animators. It was an emotional ride everyone was sad to see end and over 10,000 bronies made the pilgrimage to 2019’s final Bronycon to say their fond farewells. While the story was over, the friendships would continue forever.
And then Pony Life aired this morning at 8 am in Canada. There was a lot of screaming and confusion. No one liked that.
In the first 10 seconds, fifty things happen and then Applejack looks at the screen after comforting her flanderized fried and says “I missed this, did y’all miss this?” Who’s a silly pony? You is Applejack. Pinkie Pie is practicing for an audition to a bake show. Hijinks ensue. To the show’s credit, it feels like a kid playing with toys; same weird pacing and raising of stakes with no actual stakes. This is mostly due to each episode being five minutes long, ten total between the two.
There are unexplained potions that give them the power of telepathy and transformation. There’s no real context for them, they just force mindshare on Rainbow Dash who is cool with it all. This was something I inferred from the toy line as there’s a heavy potion motif in the marketing and products themselves.
One positive is all of our favorite voice actors are back including Tara Strong as Twilight Sparkle and even Nicole Oliver comes back as Princess Celestia. The animation is hyper enough to fit the pacing and the models themselves are fine. They’re cute. I’ve never been a big detractor to the aesthetic and I can see this really jelling with the original target market of little girls.
Will this appeal to bronies? So far no. There’s callbacks attempting to bring them in, but this is purely for the youngest crowd. Is there any enjoyment for adults? Not really, no. While the original Friendship is Magic was made to be enjoyed by the whole family, which is what made it so immensely popular to begin with, there is really nothing for adults here. That’s not to say you can’t find enjoyment in it, but I wouldn’t go in expecting the first series.
It’s fine for your kids if they really want to see more of their favorite My Little Pony characters, but I’d just show them the original series. The first eight seasons are on Netflix and the final season is on Hulu. As for pony life, it’s a distraction until generation 5 takes off which will hopefully be much MUCH better.