Monday, 30 September 2013

Twilicorn is coming to the IDW comics!

'DAFUQ'' Twilicorn by ZuTheSkunk (CC by-nc-sa 3.0)
"DAFUQ" Twilicorn by ZuTheSkunk, Mar 2013. CC by-nc-sa 3.0
Yes, that's right! This is official news, from Bobby Curnow on the IDW forums, so whether you're delighted, distraught or indifferent ain't gonna stop it happening. The Princess Twilight cometh from issue #13 onwards, though rather weirdly she's starting out in what seems to be a pirate-themed arc. For what it's worth, which isn't much: given a straight choice, I'd probably still vote for UniTwi over AliTwi... but it really doesn't bother me much any more. At any rate, I'll be waiting to see what Season 4 brings on that score.

Curnow has also said that Twilight will not be a Princess in the Spike micro, which is the next in that series to appear. His take on the whole thing, having seen "a good chunk" of the scripts for S4, is that the dynamics between Twi and the rest of the Mane Six have changed no more than if she'd got a driving licence. New responsibilities yes, new things you can do yes... but you're still the same person underneath. Or, in this case, the same pony. It's not a perfect analogy, but I do see where Curnow is coming from.

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Comic review: My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic issue 11

MLP:FiM comic issue #11, cover A
Andy Price's ridiculously amazing Cover A
This blog seems increasingly to be turning into a review-specific one. It's really not intended as such, but there's just so much coming out at the moment! This time it's issue #11 of IDW's main MLP:FiM series, and (wonder of wonders) it appeared on time in the UK. As usual, Nostalgia & Comics grabbed my £3.15, which I handily had left after buying some badges from Derby's Toy Planet — but was it worth the money? Well, it's by the Cook/Price/Breckel team, and that's generally been a sign of quality so far. Past the jump, folks!

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

DVD review: Welcome to Ponyville

"Welcome to Ponyville" DVD cover
Rainbow Dash seems to be up to something...
Yes, at long last there is a Region 2 DVD available in Britain. Until now, anyone wanting to watch My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic on official media has had to import discs from the US, Australia, Germany... basically, all the countries that get a better deal than the UK, which is most of them. Rant over! This disc is available from some large Asda supermarkets for £6, but only a few branches seem to stock it, so I paid £8.99 from HMV in Worcester for mine. (It's also available from and direct from distributors ClearVision.) More past the jump!

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Running of the Leaves Day?

I don't keep up as much as some with all the fandom-decided dates, but as it's the autumn equinox here in the northern hemisphere, it seems as good a day as ever to celebrate RotL Day! And, of course, have a watch of "Fall Weather Friends". A really nice episode, that one, and to me the ep that truly marks the advent of FiM's mature phase. The CMC having been introduced in the previous episode, all the major characters are now there and the writers can get on with just giving us an enjoyable show. "Fall Weather Friends" is a very good start, as it is indeed a lot of fun. (Oh, and yes, one day I will go back to doing Classic Episode Reviews on this blog. I just never seem to have the time!)

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Comic review: MLP:FiM Micro-series issue #8: Celestia

MLP:FiM Celestia micro comic, Cover B
Hush now, quiet now, it's time to lay your sleepy head
A week after it appeared in the US (and digitally) the latest in the My Little Pony micro-series has now reached British comic shops. As usual, I picked up my copy for £3.15 from Nostalgia & Comics in Birmingham. I plumped for Cover B, which features an adorable filly Twilight and baby Spike by Sabrina Alberghetti. (Is this the first A/B cover she's done?) The comic is drawn by established Pony artist Amy Mebberson, but we have a new writer joining the stable in the shape of Georgia Ball. Does it work? Let's see, after the jump!

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Ponypic: Scootaloo Milkshake by Scootalo0

Scootaloo Milkshake by Scootalo0, CC by 3.0
Scootaloo Milkshake by Scootalo0, Nov 2012. CC by 3.0
Okay, I know this is hardly an original idea for a picture, but I think it works really well in this case. The fact that it features Best CMC certainly doesn't harm things, and the milkshake just tops it off. Also, yes, the artist's name is a bit on the confusing side! But I suppose you can't have everything. I have a strange hunger for a milkshake myself now. Alberto Frog, where are you? (Yay for obscure retro British TV references...)

Friday, 13 September 2013

Oh look, another delay

No, I don't mean in my updating here... although that may well be true! I mean that for the second month running, the paper version of the micro has failed to appear in UK comic shops on its official launch day. We can get it via Comixology, and I have done so, but I'm going to wait to post a review until I actually have a paper copy in front of me. If this keeps happening, I may have to change that policy, and I know I've used digital comics for reviews before, but I'd really rather stick with physical comics.

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

August IDW comics sales figures: a nasty surprise

Big Mac bucking at the fair
If you humans don't start buying this comic again, there's going to be trouble...
It's time once again for us to take a look at how the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic comic and its associated Micro-series have been selling. As usual, the stats come from Comichron and cover North American comic shops. Last month, I was in buoyant mood after being able to note increased sales. This month... afraid not. Actually, on the face of it the figures are eye-openingly bad. Main series issue #10 came in at no. 84 — down 18 places since last month — and sold a mere:
This represents a huge drop of over thirty per cent since last month. (30.3%, in fact.) I certainly didn't expect that, especially given that we're in the middle of an extremely well-received story from the Cook/Price/Breckel all-star team. It was released very late in the month, which may have had some bearing, but no previous issue has sold less than 32,000 copies. The CMC micro didn't fare all that well either. It did creep back up to no. 100 (up three) but sales were only:
Again, a big decrease since July. At 14.3%, it's not as precipitous as the cliff that main-series sales have fallen off, but it's hardly good news even so. Again, this is substantially the worst performance by any of the seven Micro-series comics published so far. I didn't think the CMC micro was all that brilliant, but it was solid enough, on a par with the AJ issue, so it would have been nice to have seen it do better. The next issue stars Celestia, not the biggest fan favourite, so my expectations are limited.

There are some good-news stories to report, most notably that Digest #1 hit no. 6 on the graphic novels chart with sales of 4,067 beating Deadpool #2. In more conventional trade-paperback territory, the anthology collecting main-series issues #1 to #4 is still a steady seller, with another 659 this month taking the total near to 7,000. Also, the Cover Gallery made no. 240 on the main chart despite not being a comic in the usual sense. It sold 6,859 copies.

But back to the main point of this month's stats: the enormous fall in the main-series' sales. I hope nobody panics too much about this: the Pony comics remain IDW's top two sellers. And August was a fairly poor month for the industry all round, as can be seen from the micro increasing its chart position despite the fall in numbers. We'll have to wait another month to see whether this is a blip, though. I hope that I'll be able to report somewhat happier news then!

Sunday, 8 September 2013

UK iTunes episodes at last... sort of

iTunes UK list of available episodes
That release date is a joke as far as UK buyers are concerned, of course
We've all been whinging for ages now at the non-availability of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic episodes on iTunes UK. Well, at last something has been done about it. As you can see here, six episodes are now available to buy. As expected, they're the same ones on the Welcome to Ponyville DVD, so not the most inspiring selection, but it's something. HD episodes cost £2.49 each, or £8.99 for the set; you can also buy them in SD for £1.89 each, or £7.99 for the set. I don't have iTunes (yay Linux) so won't be trying this out myself, but it's better than nothing.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

A bit more Aviators!

This isn't all that new, but I think it's still worth mentioning. By common consent, the best song in Equestria Girls is the one with about four titles. "Helping Twilight Win the Crown" is the unofficial one, but also the one most people use, so I'll go with that. Anyway, Aviators has done a rather nice remix of it, which as I haven't got anything else to post now I'll put up here for your delight and delectation. Sadly the Soundcloud download link he gives in the YouTube page doesn't actually work (there's no Download button when you get there!) but this is the next best thing.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Comic review: My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic issue 10

MLP:FiM #10 Cover A
Andy Price's fantastic Cover A homage to Justice League #1
It's been a hectic week or so in my pony life (which, amazingly, is not the only part of my life — but it's felt like it recently!) and so I'm only now getting on to this review. Issue #10 of IDW's My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic comic (£3.15 from N&C as ever) concludes the short arc starring Big Mac: you could almost call it an unofficial Big Mac micro. Issue #9 was absolutely amazing, and received my first 10/10 rating. If this follow-up can get anywhere close to that, then it'll be a classic arc. Come past the jump with me to see whether it can!