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BrineBlade
10-13-2015, 07:32 PM
Hello everybody! I'm BrineBlade

And I'm Buttercream! Welcome to our new review series!

Yes, this is the Elements of Analysis, where we review episodes of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic

As well as other MLP-related things, but mostly the main series. Now, before we review, we figured it would be best just to give some of our opinions on the series.

Just so there isn't a wall of text...
1. Best Mane Six

I would go with the predictable choice of Rainbow Dash, but my favorite would either be Pinkie or Fluttershy. Yes, definitely Fluttershy.

It's a difficult choice for me. I'm stuck between Twilight and Fluttershy. I relate way more to Twilight, but as a character, I have to say I prefer Fluttershy.

2. Best CMC?

Scootaloo

Sweetie Belle. She's the most sensible of the three and I love her design (and squeaks :3)

3. Best Background Pony?

Appleja-na, just kidding. Derpy.

Lyra, followed closely by Octavia

4. Best Princess?

Luna

I also favor Princess Luna.

5. Best Pet?

Does Spike still count as a pet?

Angel (I'm definitely in the minority there XP)

6. Best Pony

Bulk Biceps. YEAH!

Spitfire for life.

7. Top 3 favorite songs

In no particular order, Hearts as Strong as Horses, Flim Flam Cider Squeezey 6000, and Glass of Water.

Pinkie's Lament, I'll Fly, and Rules of Rarity.

8. Favorite episode

Originally it was Luna Eclipsed, but Crusaders of the Lost Mark has won me over.

I have to go with the most recent one, Crusaders of the Lost Mark.

9. Favorite season

We both agreed with Season 5

10. How you became a Brony?

Watched some episodes on Netflix, then got into the series more through friends.

God of Bronies and LAWLzoR both got me into the show. It was actually a phenomenon on this forum years ago and I've never heard of it before I joined. Eventually I decided to see why everyone loved "that pony show."

11. Favorite Voice Actors/actresses

John DeLancie

Tabitha St. Germain, Ashleigh Ball, and Cathy Weseluck are my favorites.

12. How the show has helped you in any way, shape or form?

It's helped me to get out of depression and anxiety.

It gave me something to look forward to and got me involved in the most warm, welcoming, and creative fandom and community in existence.

13. Some of your favorite fanworks?

Smile HD, anything to do with the Rainbow Factory, the comic from mauroz on deviantArt

University Days, the Secret Life of Rarity series, and anything by Eilemonty.

Now then, our first review will be on the series premiere.

BKTurner47
10-13-2015, 07:37 PM
Welcome to the reviewers club!

BrineBlade
10-13-2015, 07:54 PM
Welcome to the reviewers club!

We've both done reviews before. This is more of a team review series.

BKTurner47
10-13-2015, 07:57 PM
OK then.

Faker
10-16-2015, 08:20 PM
Review 1: Friendship is Magic- Part 1

It's time to review the start of it all, the very beginning, what pulled Brine and I into eternal Bronydom. For the first part of our reviews, we'll each give our own reaction and take on the episode.

Buttercream's Review:
Ahh, the first episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Such great memories. However, in addition to talking about my memories, I'll also be looking over the episode one more time to see if it's as good as I thought. Similarly, Brine will also be sharing his view on the episode. So, let's begin!

We start off with the narrator, who is actually Princess Celestia, giving us some background on the show and events to come. As a first-time viewer, I thought it was stereotypically fairy tale-like. But, as much as we may argue against it, exposition is needed. And this introduction did its job perfectly, it gave us the information we needed without going on about details that don't matter. Plus, now that we've established I have zero masculinity, I can confidently state it was a good start to the show. And I was definitely interested in learning more about this Nightmare Moon character. We also meet our first direct character, Twilight Sparkle.

I'm only going to review the next part once, the theme. My initial reaction to the theme is as follows:

"Oh my god, what the heck is this!? I can just feel the girly-ness emanating from the song. Lord almight-, hey, the song picks up at least. Who are these other characters? They genuinely seem interesting. You know, if I don't focus on the lyrics too much, it's not the worst theme I've ever heard."

To this day, I still believe that last statement. It's not the worst I've ever heard. Although, after four and a half seasons, I wish they'd do more than just change the imagery every now and then. The intro gets stale after a while. Anyway, I should move onto the show again.

Right off the bat we're introduced to a few characters we'll never see again (not counting their background appearances), well, at least until Season 5 Episode 12, but that's a story for another time.

In response to Twinkleshine asking Twilight if she wants to come to a party, we get "Oh, sorry, girls... I've got a lot of studying to catch up on." Twilight... Why do you have to be the pony incarnation of me? Already, I'm starting to build a relationship with her. For the longest time, and even still sorta today, I've been extremely antisocial. I still don't even like to go out for social gatherings. I'm just not a party guy. I actually love school, and I'd rather read than mostly anything else. In fact, I write research papers just for fun. Anyway, enough about me, now back to the show.

We also get introduced to Spike... the Dragon? The lizard? Something? I don't know, it wasn't until later in the episode that it was clearly established for me that he's a dragon. A dragon without wings, huh, that's a new one. With all the constant slapstick humor targeting him, and his lack of knowledge with Twilight's extensive vocabulary... I knew all too well he was going to suffer from what I dub "comic relief-itis." Later in the series I would come to respect him as being more than just comic relief, he had his own unique story and history as well.

And then we let the cliches roll... So, apparently this Summer Sun Celebration is to take place on the day Nightmare Moon is supposedly to escape, the thousandth year of which it is celebrated. One thousands years? That hasn't been done before *rolls eyes* (Apparently a thousand years ago was the time to be alive). Next we have the classic "nobody believes the person who's actually right" shtick. The nail in the coffin is Celestia's insistence that Twilight Sparkle make some friends. Although, I could at least forgive that part since that is the theme of this show and all, and plus I learned to roll with these types of things as the show progressed. They then arrive in Ponyville (As the pun-master, I welcome the groan-worthy puns to come). We meet Pinkie Pie, and all we really get from her is an overdramatic sigh. I knew she was going to be an amazing character (Later, I would come to realize that was a major understatement).

Next, we get to meet a cowgirl, er... cowpony, Applejack. I wonder what she's gonna sound lik-... What else should I have expected? ...Truth be told, though, I've always had a crush on the Southern belle types (Not that I support man-to-horse marriages. But hey, who am I to judge? You do you). Twilight comes to face face with a full-on buffet. We also get to meet a lot of Applejack's extended family, most of which are never seen again so I think it's safe to assume their carriage ride home had an accident or something. Anyway, it's time for Twilight to leave, much to the family's disappointmen-

OHMIGOSH OHMIGOSH OHMIGOSH! THIS PONY, APPLEBLOOM!? WHY IS SHE SO F*yay*CKING ADORABLE!? SHE'S SO PRECIOUS!

Even in my first viewing, I could not deny Applebloom's cuteness. Also we met Granny Smith, who pretty much seemed like another stereotypical, played out grandmother character (Oh, how wrong younger me was.)

Spike and Twilight, who had a huge food baby, carried on. I mean seriously, look at Twilight! Geeze, whoever animates this show deserves a pay raise. Everything about this show so far has been amazing! Anyway, she then meets Rainbow Dash, who in her first appearance manages to completely wipe out Twilight.

My first reaction to her was similar to most others', she was awesome! Her design, her raspy voice, her personality, she was just an awesome character! Then, this so-called weatherpony claims she could clear the skies in ten seconds.

Younger me: Challenge accepted. There's no way she c- WHUH?

Seriously, do it. Just do it. Shia Labeouf that stuff. Count to ten. She actually does it in ten real life seconds. Rainbow Dash, I salute thee.

Well, after that encounter, Twilight was definitely in a hairy situation. Yeah, there's more where that came from, so sit back. I warned ya!

She comes upon the next Mane Six member, Rarity, as she's preparing decorations for the Celebration. Well, she certainly has a work ethic. She can't even bother to properly greet her guests. And once Rarity turns around, Spike is smitten (Now, normally I'm against these pointless crushes in this TV, but the fact that it obviously wouldn't work out between the two made this one alright for me).

Unfortunately, Rarity loses a point in her favor when she begins to exhibit the traits of a snobby, fame-hungry fashion diva. Come on, Hasbro? Why you gotta create such a shallow character? Of course, this is not who she is at all, she's actually much more caring and (usually) less superficial, but for now, they were hardly portraying that side of her. Unlike the previous four characters, I really didn't care for her.

Enter Fluttershy. Well, she's obviously good with animals, she's very gentle, and... she's shy? Seriously, where else have I seen a series where characters were named at birth after traits they couldn't have exhibited as a baby?

*cut to Smurfs humming* *shudders*

I excused Fluttershy's unfortunate naming, however, and she did open up to the two (again, massive understatement) after meeting Spike. Alright, calm down now girl. But, once again proving her similarity to me, Twilight shoos her new friend away. *sighs* You're really trying to become my favorite pony, Twi, you really are.

She finally gets inside her library treehouse (which for some reason I never even questioned), and is greeted by a surprise party, courtesy of Pinkie Pie:

Theponywhotalksamileaminuteandneverstopsbecauseshe lovestotalkabouteveryunrelatedtopicpossibleandshes crazybutlovableandshebakedrainbowdashintoacupcake!

Suffice to say, I liked her. Although I knew too much of her would give me a headache.

And of course I, I mean Twilight Sparkle, left the party and went to her room. Spike comes in and...

A lampshade, really? Spike, what was in that punch? Now I know it wasn't Pinkie's hot sauce!

Finally, it's time for the sunrise. We meet Mayor Mare, who was generic enough for me to not give a flying feather about. Rarity's gonna go get the princess and everything'll b- of course, the princess is in another castle.

Then comes Nightmare Moon, and even for a kid's show, she looked badass as heck. I also winced at Applejack biting down on Rainbow's tail and yanking it, I don't even have a tail and that looked painful. Now, this Nightmare Moon character; she has the potential to be an amazing series villain.

"The night shall last forever!" I don't know why, but that line sent shivers down my spine. The good kind, though. Like when you eat a really great piece of cake, or get to the final boss fight in a game.

Naturally, as this was a two-parter, I had to give my respects to the show and watch the second part. Even if it was just a pony show, I wanted to know how this particular adventure would end.


Brine's Review:
Starting off we have exposition stating how two regal sisters kept harmony in the land of Equestria and how the sister that controlled the moon got jealous at the sister who controlled the sun. If this wasn't a show about magical ponies, I would be questioning how many laws of physics they are breaking. The jealous sister tries to plunge the world into darkness as Nightmare Moon, but the elder sister uses the McGuffins- I mean Elements of Harmony, to stop her. The camera then pans out to show a unicorn reading the exposition. And that's when the opening starts, and, while it's not bad, the intro seems very, well, bland. The intro isn't very hype worthy, but it does give a decent idea of what the series is about. After the intro, we see the unicorn go to her house, intrigued by the Elements of Harmony. The unicorn in question is Twilight Sparkle, apprentice to Princess Celestia, the current ruler of Equestria. We also meet Spike, Twilight's assistant. Oh, and he's a baby dragon. AND HE'S SO ADORABLE! *cough* Anyways, we find out that the younger sister was sent to the moon so that she wouldn't harm anybody, but that on "the longest day of the thousandth year", she would return, as cliche as ever. Twilight sends a note to Princess Celestia, warning her of Nightmare Moon's return, but Celestia brushes it off, instead sending Twilight to check on the preparations for the party and to make some friends, to which Twilight states that she doesn't need friendship to protect against Nightmare Moon. During the check in on the preparations, she meets Pinkie Pie, Applejack, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, and Fluttershy, together known as the Mane 6, learning a bit about each of them, and just having an awkward day, before getting to her new home, a library made from a tree, to find a party awaiting her thrown by Pinkie. Twilight goes to her bedroom, trying to get away from the party so she can figure out a way to stop Nightmare Moon, but isn't able to. She joins the others in seeing the sun rise, but instead of Celestia raising the sun, Nightmare Moon crashes the party, ending Episode 1, TO BE CONTINUED!

Buttercream's Final Thoughts:
So far, Episode one of Friendship is Magic shows just how much the series has to grow. But don't worry about that, the series definitely develops, but as of now, it does seem pretty basic with two-dimensional (literally) characters. But a lot of these characters are definitely relatable. The animation is incredible and addicting to look at, as well as the musical scores and voice acting. Heck, I can do a whole review of that alone (And I just may). Back to the episode itself, it tells the story it has to without being too full of filler. However, I do wish there weren't as many cliches, and the theme does get tedious after so many episodes. For the most part, it's a decent episode. I'd say on par with most other starting episodes in other shows (I'll admit, the Littlest Pet Shop pilot wasn't perfect. Neither was the Steven Universe pilot). However, the show manages to leave me wanting more, which is why I continued to watch the second episode. All in all, the first episode was pretty good, apart from being very predictable and introducing certain characters *CoughCoughMostlyjustrarityCoughCough* rather poorly.

Brine's Final Thoughts:
In general, the episode gives enough info on the main characters to help us understand them, but just enough where we want to learn more about them. It's a decent first episode, but it definitely shows, considering it feels rushed.

Pros & Cons of the episode we both agree on:

Pros:
-The characters catch our interest for the most part, even if we do want more information and personality from them.
-We both have at least one character who made us gush over their cuteness. :p
-The end of the episode leaves us wanting more, which actually encourages us to watch more.
-The show has top quality animation (In collaboration we both noted Twilight's "food baby" as both hilarious and a good use of animation.)
-Nightmare Moon's introduction was definitely chilling, as was the intent of the show creators.

Cons:
-There are many cliches that have been utilized so far.
-The show's theme song isn't very memorable or exciting
-We only really see one side of the characters introduced so far.

Buttercream's Number Rating: 7.5/10
Brine's Number Rating: 7/10
Total Rating: 14.5/20

Remember, just like in the show Whose Line Is It Anyway?, points don't really matter. They're like sectional moderators on this forum.

I hope you enjoyed our first review! The second part of two-parter series premiere will be posted at another time, since this post is already long enough as is. From Brine, and Buttercream, thanks for reading! :D

Turtlesauce
10-17-2015, 07:24 AM
As a non-brony, I still found this review interesting