By Ashley Gibbs
As an adult, I am fully aware that I am not the target audience for My Little Pony but it’s something I grew up with as a child and find the current show interesting at times. I don’t know much about the upcoming movie so I decided to read My Little Pony: The Movie Prequel #1 to learn more about it. This issue focuses on the villain and sets up his motivations, we also see another character from the movie but only briefly. However, instead of making me more interested it worried me, while I don’t expect Oscar-worthy adventures from the cartoon horse movie, I’m hoping for an interesting plot but starting out by not liking the villain is not good.
His name is Storm King and he starts off by breaking the fourth wall in a goofy way, a huge turn-off. Perhaps it’s just a bit of joking, he’ll be more imposing in the story I hope. Nope. The ponies have faced many villains, some more laid-back who even reform and others who can be rather terrifying and unforgiving; Storm King seems like he’s trying to be both. He looks scary and does mean things but he also puts silly hats on his crew and makes bad jokes. I am unsure how to feel about him but none of what comes to mind his good. He’s not interesting, at all. His motivations are hollow and the story lays on a message about friendship in a very heavy-handed way. He’s a bad guy who has no friends and likes it that way because you can’t trust other people and that was when I really just stopped caring. The story itself isn’t bad, it’s about Storm King attacking the home of Capper and stealing its riches and has a nice twist at the end, however it just let me not liking Storm King and for the wrong reasons. Also, we don’t see much of Capper, a character who will be in the movie, but it works as some background story for him.
The artwork in the issue is good, the colors are jumping off of the pages and the characters are well done. Every panel is full of movement and life with good attention to details and the backgrounds. It has a cute cartoony style that is reminiscent of the current established style from the show and upcoming movie. I also very much enjoyed how the panels are laid out, they grab readers’ attention and help the story flow better. If I had to make a complaint it would be that the art feels a bit flat in terms of the world looking like it has depth.
If you’re a die-hard fan of the show or your child is then reading My Little Pony: The Movie Prequel #1 may be for you. The story is flimsy but the art is nice and it helps lay some groundwork for the movie itself. My biggest issue was that the villain just didn’t seem villainous and has no dimension. Perhaps this will be expanded upon on screen but as it stands now, this comic made me wonder what tone the movie will have. Being a movie, there is a chance to take the story a bit more seriously and add depth but if the villain is this one-note then I’m not sure where the story will go from there. Not a bad read but also not a very good read.
My Little Pony: The Movie Prequel #1
Writers: Ted Anderson
Artists: Andy Price
Colorist: Heather Breckel
Letters: Neil Uyetake
Publisher: IDW Publishing