My Little Pony: Micro-Series: #3: Rarity: 04/02/16
My Little Pony: Micro-Series: #3: Rarity by Katie Cook is one of three Friends Ship is Magic comics I read on a whim. I'm also a fan of the cartoon series which surprises me as I was never was a fan of any of the previous generations.
Lauren Faust's relaunch of the series sparked something unexpected. Yes, she set out to tell good stories with a wide range of female characters who were well beyond the pretty and pink of the previous iterations.
That spark, though, has exploded into a self aware, genre savvy, parody welcoming world that extends beyond the HUB cartoon. The rules for television and publishing are different and there is greater freedom in what can be included. That means these comics can explore stories and characters in ways that the cartoon cannot.
We can all imagine that Applejack's family cider is the hard variety, even though on TV it isn't. We know Rainbow Dash LOVES the cider and can totally imagine her letting her main down with a pint or two of the stuff. We can imagine Fluttershy attracting the annoying dude bros (oh, I guess those would be Bronies) and not being able to shoo them away. Right?
Here the main character in question is Rarity. She is the local fashion designer and has her hoof on the pulse of all things haute couture. She likes the finer things in life and saves up for a luxury weekend at a spa in the country.
Except, it isn't. It's really more of a dude ranch run by burned out hippies. California was ground zero for a lot of the hippy culture and there are still pockets of it all these decades later. I guess the Ponies have their own hippy pockets too. Rarity at first is horrified but she finds a way to help and turn the failing commune into a vibrant, thriving community. Even if they don't always get what she's saying.
Beyond the hippy references and other silliness, there are some wonderful metafiction moments. My favorite is the hippy horse who seems both genre aware and self aware.
These micro adventures are short, packed with jokes and visual puns, and very fun to read.