Last month, I attended a lovely library talk about women in comics. Christina Rice, a local librarian and comics writer, talked about her work on My Little Pony comics. I’ve always been a fan of My Little Pony, but hadn’t really watched the new show. To sate my curiosity, I picked up the My Fiendship is Magic volume. These five comics explore the secret origins of five pony villains. It was interesting to see kingdoms outside Equestria, the main pony land, told from the various POVs.
Beware, spoilers will be found below!
Sombra by Jeremy Whitley (writer), Brenda Hickey (artist)
The first story is about Sombra, an orphan pony found outside city and adopted by the ponies. His coat is green and he looks different than all the other ponies. Needless to say, he gets picked on and doesn’t understand why. Poor Sombra. Luckily, he becomes bff with Radiant Hope. Her pony mark hasn’t come in, so she also gets shunned by the other ponies. They play together and make up stories and games. All Sombra wants in the world is to visit the Crystal Faire. But every year the crystal heart is displayed, he’s too sick to get out of bed. Radiant stays by his side every year. In the last year of the tale, the heart begins to tear Sombra apart, a darkness is leaking from him. Radiant attains her healing magic in the last second and saves him. She is a rare healing pony! With her mark, Sombra feels abandoned. Now he’s truly, the only freak in the city. He uncovers his dark secret heritage and embraces his villainy. He rejects Radiant Hope and runs away to become her biggest foe.
Tirek by Christina Rice (writer), Tony Fleecs (artist)
Tirek is about an angsty centaur prince. He’s gifted with magic that his parents don’t understand. With his little brother, Scorpan, they visit a shunned elder named Sendak in the netherlands. Even though it’s forbidden, Sendak has kidnapped a unicorn from Equestria! He wants to experiment on the pony and harness the unicorn magic for himself. He tells Tirek to come back and observe his progress as his apprentice. Of course, Tirek is impatient and sneaks back in to take the unicorn magic on his own. He attempts to use his new magic to take her power with fire. Instead, the unicorn escapes, nearly bringing Sendak’s cave down on top of them. Tirek ends up grounded by his father and more determined than ever to secure unicorn magic for himself one day.
Sirens by Ted Anderson (writer), Agnes Garbowska (artist)
Adagio Dazzle, Aria Blaze and Sonata Dusk decide to take over Canterlot with their magic singing powers. They enter a singing competition, but are booed off the stage. Apparently, their old songs won’t cut it in this hip village. Sonata chewing gum inspires, Adagio to write a brand new genre of music: pop! The entire coliseum becomes hypnotized by the sirens, sending their energy to the sirens stones. All are fooled except Starswirl the bearded, a local wizard pony. He must fight fire with fire and challenges them to a music battle. Each side invents new genres to outdo the other. In the end, he is unable to defeat them, only banishing them to a dimension without magic (i.e. our human world).
The Dream Team by Heather Nuhfer (writer), Tony Fleecs (artist)
Nightmare Moon is banished to the moon by Princess Celestia. Moon comes across a castle full nyx creatures. The nyx are in charge of making all the wonderful dreams for the ponies of Equestria. Moon attempts to befriend the nyx, batting her eyelashes and innocently asking them to teach her how to make the dreams. Naiman, the head nyx, says it’s forbidden. But of course, Moon finds a way to convince, Doran, a nyx obsesses with Moon’s mane hair. If Nightmare Moon promises to let her braid it, they could be best friends who make dreams together. It doesn’t take long for Moon to reveal her evil intentions to create nightmares for all of Equestria. Princess Celestia must find the courage to battle Nightmare Moon in her dreams.
The Many Tales of Queen Chrysalis by Katie Cook (writer), Andy Price (artist)
For her many wicked deeds, Queen Chrysalis has been sentenced to 1,000 years in prison. In this final tale, Twilight and the gang visit the villainess. Some of the younger ponies don’t know all the evil Chrysalis has wreaked upon the kingdoms. The ponies tell stories of her past attacks to update the very thick binder file. Chrysalis destroyed the cloud kingdom of Pegasus ruled by King Orion in the first mini-story. In the second, she hides her minions inside a trojan pony gift for Emperor Incitatus. The arrogant ruler foolishly lets the gift inside full of changelings. Luckily, Princess Celestia arrives and saves the kingdom just in time. In the last tale, Chrysalis and her changelings are trapped inside a volcano.They must outwit a dragon before he decides to eat them all. These mini-stories prove that she might be the most crafty villain of all.
The story art in this mini-comic series was super fun, more fantastical than I expected. My favorite villain was Queen Chrysalis, but my favorite story art was the dream land of the fourth comic. I’d recommend these comics for fans of the My Little Pony cartoon universe. The plots kept my attention even as an adult. Chrysalis loves sucking the life out of ponies, so I would probably recommend these comics for older elementary age kids and above. At least for this volume in particular. Personally, I will probably read another Pony comic in the future. Comics are great reading material to cleanse my palette after serious longer novels.
Read my other reviews on my blog, Confessions of a Pop Culture Addict.