After spending months ignoring the show entirely and refusing to watch it in large part due to the unexpected and inexplicable popularity it's gathered on ZE INTERNETS complete with memes, captions for goof pictures, etc., as well as informing those among my friends who expressed great enjoyment of the show that they were insane, I decided I should probably watch the show before continuing along this line of critique in total ignorance.
So I did.
Having now watched the show, I have to admit...that my pre-watch judgment was completely on the mark. Average show aimed at lower age groups with expected predictability in characters and episode arcs. It's not bad, but I can't say I see anything in it of note. Even the animation's nothing special.
I'm as confused by people's fascination with the show now as I was before personally watching it.
Thank you Shjade you just made my earlier point.
In comparison to Hasbro's original MLP (back in the 80s) this show is monumentally better. But yeah, being an animator myself, the flash animation is recycled (meaning they have set character and set formulas that they essentially just change the color or size of before recycling it back into the series. It's a basic flash animation technique which makes animating easier, but on the other side more...repetitive and unoriginal.)
And like i said before the episodes are random stories that have little to do with each other. The only steady plot development i see is with those baby ponies and their cutie mark. However i appreciate that they're trying to make a pony world more dynamic and believable rather than just have us accept it like in the original show. I.E. explaining about a pony's development and personal powers.
This is Hasbro remember? They're after your money. plain. simple. done. Their goal is to sell toys, it's the same with Transformers, Jem, and G.I Joe. Sure the stories can be fun and even actively engaging, it doesn't change the fact that the end product of the show is to motivate viewers into buying the toys. I'm a big TF fan myself and there's this GIANT debate about the cartoon incarnation vs. the need to sell toys on the TF forum. It's a pretty intriguing concept when you think about it. How much of the show is designed to just be entertaining and stand on it's own, and how much of the show is designed to sell toys?
Anyway ending on my earlier statement. If MLP:FiM is suposed to be engaging as a series, I would suggest that they get a conclusive villain in the series. Some type of prominent adversary for the ponies to work against. Because just as the show is, it's floating by purely on the 'cuteness' factor of the characters. And that can work for awhile (like it did in the original show) but the ultimate end point is hallow and missing.