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Up until a few weeks ago, I never understood how one could either over-study or be overly-prepared. From where I sat, it was hard to see how either could be possible, because I never was able to see myself in a situation where those two instances could ever happen to me. However, I can safely say that after over-thinking myself to a lesser grade on my State Accident and Health exam and forcing myself to get on line for the “My Little Pony” panel much sooner than I had to makes me think that their might some validity to the saying. After trying to sit through the DC Collectables panel and leaving 30 minutes in, I returned in time for the last questions and for the final wave of Pony fans to make their way into the panel room. Did the panel prove itself to be worth running from work from? Let’s take a look, shall we?
The Panel Rundown:
With the panel being fronted by some of the most powerful people in connection with “Friendship is Magic” from Jason Teason (VP of Creative Development for Hasbro), to Mike Vogel (Supervising Director) to Megan McCarthy (Overall Show runner for MLP: FiM), there was no time wasted as they declared that the panel would mostly be about Equestrian Mythology and where they see it going in the future. To start things off, the discussion would begin by comparing themselves to the Transformers: Prime production. Compared to the latter, the FiM team enjoys much more freedom in shaping their universe by not being tied down to previous series. At the same time, they also said that the freedom comes with responsibility as they have rules to what can and cannot go in the stories.
The Result of said rules: Many concepts being left on the cutting room floor, along with heated arguments about said ideas.
The panel speakers would then show a clip from the “Heart’s Warming Eve” episode and lead into a discussion about wanting to explore the origins of Equestria in further detail, including the fight between Celestia and Luna, which lead to Luna’s 1,000 year slumber. Needless to say, the Mythology of this show has still yet to be finished.
Speaking of the rules, the discussion reveals that since Equestria was meant to be a world whose primary residences are hoofed creatures, it would be decided that they would be the ones who could speak, while most other Animals would communicate in a manner more familiar to us. Within that same discussion it was also revealed that ancient creatures would be the exception to said rule, which allows for Dragons and other creatures in this classification to talk like the Hooved creatures would.
Without much of a down time, our journey through the world of Equestria continued, as a clip of Princess Luna played next to the delight of the crowd. Like the 2 clips before it, this clip bought us to discussion of background, secondary and side Ponies and which ones the fans took a shine to. In some instances, the panel speakers knew that some would be instant hits (like Luna), while in other instances (Octavia and Vinyl Scratch) they were totally taken by surprise. Needless to say, there is no exact science to making a winning secondary Pony.
Speaking of “winners”, Discord’s introduction is next, which leads us into the discussion of the Villains that have appeared on this show. The speakers would tell the crowd that Lauren Faust was a big reason why John De Lancie came on board, and after stressing how important his contribution to the character was, they teased that possible unseen footage of the character may be coming in the future. From there, the speakers would transition into talking about Queen Chrysalis. In that part of the discussion they would emphasize how she wasn’t a Lauren Faust creation (that honor belongs to Rebecca Dart) and the fact that her original design was supposed to be scarier. They would also mention that she would be in the upcoming Comic coming from IDW.
After a brief discussion on the world building dreams that the speakers had (this included exploring Luna’s Moon Colony), the crowd was treated to some unseen Season 3 footage that revealed 3 important details about the Crystal Empire Storyline.
It’s appearance is its’ first in a 1,000 years
King Sombra appears to have been responsible for its’ disappearance.
Needless to say, the crowd went apeshit.
It would then be time for the question and answer, the highlights of which included.
Confirmation that the show isn’t ending in a set year and that the 13 episodes don’t mean that everyone should panic that the show will end at 65 episodes.
Flutterguy was voiced by an actor named Blue Macuna.
“20% cooler” making it into Borderlands was not something Hasbro pushed for.
Fighting is Magic question is not answered for obvious reasons, but loves the fandom that has grown around the show.
Manehattan may be featured in a future episode.
Equestrian Government is no simple beast and will likely be explored at some point.
The conversion from concept to reality for a show done in Flash is not any quicker than it would be hand drawn, especially at the quality level that “Friendship is Magic is done at.
There will be an effort made to make the comic and TV show a part of the same continuity
A Soundtrack definitely sounds like a good idea
A Movie? Possibly
Writers' Take on the Proceedings:
As the days counted down to New York Comic Con, I was so sure that this panel would be the place where we would get the official announcement to when Season 3 would begin, along with other details as to what would expect from the show going into 2013. However, as I heard that this panel would be focusing on Equestrian mythology, my first reaction was disappointment as I knew that the news I (and a lot of others) had been waiting for would not be dropped at New York Comic Con. Thankfully that disappointment would not last long as our trip into the mythology of Equestria was never a boring one in the slightest. As I sat there and watched the speakers talk about the beautiful and expansive world they’ve already built, there was no way for me to help but be drawn into the sheer ambition this creative team has. Considering the nature of the franchise, it would’ve been extremely easy for this crew to phone it in creatively and call it a day, because the show would’ve sold toys regardless. However, we have been treated to dozens of great stories, more than several amazing characters and 2 years of some of the most wonderful Saturday Morning memories we’ll ever have. Long story short, if the creators are allowed to continue to do what they do best, then we’re all going to have to front row seats to something amazing.