Written by: Jeremy Whitley
Artist: Agnes Garbowska
Coloring: Heather Breckel
Lettering by: Neil Uyetake
Published by: IDW Publishing
Rarity has arrived in Manehattan, the night before Sapphire Shores biggest concert to date. As our Ponyville fashion designer arrives at the prestigious Madison Mare Garden for what was supposed to be just a fitting, she finds the entire production team in a shambles. With entirely new costumes to design, she must work alongside the shows Visual Effects Expert – Trixie Lulamoon! Can Rarity put Trixie’s past wrongdoings behind her and focus on the show? Or is this to be Sapphire Shores last performance?
This is one explosive issue that is sure to set off some fireworks between the once rival ponies. Even though Rarity holds the Element of Generosity, she knows how to hold a grudge. Having to work with Trixie is going to be a test of both her kindness and understanding. Trixie has had a troublesome past and has caused much harm onto the inhabitants of Ponyville. Using her Unicorn powers to entrap the town beneath a glass dome, much like the Simpsons movie actually. However both have been employed by performer Sapphire Shore to work on her largest show to date. A story all about showing forgiveness and giving ponies second chances.
Sweetie Bell travels with Rarity to the big city in order to spend some time with her old friend – Babs. Before the sisters go their separate ways for the weekend, Sweetie Bell points out the many things that have changed since last meeting Babs. Mainly the Cutie Mark Crusaders no longer being ‘blank flanks’ and having developed a friendship with Diamond Tiara. All because each of the fillies learned to forgive one another’s faults and start anew. A lesson that Rarity put into action when disaster occurred during dress rehearsal. Having admitted to not working with Trixie on the costumes, she then puts her personal feelings aside and agrees to pull an all nighter with Trixie in order to make the show a success. This is also the first time I have seen the pop star Sapphire Shores in the comic series, but she has had several appearances in the earlier issues.
Having outsold her previously booked venue, Sapphire Shores is upgraded to the prestigious Madison Mare Gardens. However she now faces the problem of rearranging her entire concert set up. With only 24 hours before her concert, Rarity is tasked with making the costumes even more dazzling so even the ponies in the back row will be able to see them. All the while, Sapphire has to train in some new backing dancers. To make her debut at the largest venue in Manehattan, Sapphire has hired the Great & Powerful Trixie to work on visual effects. There is more than just an awkward relationship between Trixie and Rarity. When Rarity fails to work with her fellow Unicorn, it ends with some disastrous results at the dress rehearsal. Thankfully Rarity realises that the show must come before anything else and gets to working alongside Trixie. A real reminder that every pony or person makes mistakes now and again. You just have to forgive and forget, don’t hold grudges and always give a second chance.
Issue 37 of the Friends Forever series is illustrated by Agnes Garbowska. Known for working across the different My Little Pony comic series and contributing to the IDW Publishing release of Jem & The Holograms. In her artwork she leaves very little detail in the backgrounds, making them uninteresting but drawing the attention to the characters instead. Who are given much larger eyes to appear more cartoonish. Apart from this feature that characters are all well proportioned. The coloring choices in the majority of panels however do clash. For instance when Rarity and Sapphire are talking outside the dressing room, both the color of Rarity’s hair and the walls begin to merge. A little more forethought should be given in future issues so this doesn’t happen again. Aside from that, we get to see Sweetie Bells ‘interesting’ new hairdo.
Issue 37 is available in three cover arts. With the Regular Cover by Tony Fleecs, which has Rarity and Trixie working backstage as Sapphire Shores preforms. The Subscription cover is by this issue’s artist- Agnes Garbowska. Both Trixie and Rarity work together to make Sapphire soar above the stage. Finally we have the Retailer Incentive cover by Melody Often, which we have pictured above. Picturing both Spike and Princess Twilight as they sit on top a lone piece of rock, in the middle of a river of lava. An adventure that does not appear in this issue, but one I would be interested in reading.
A difficult and trying time for Rarity as she sets to work on Sapphire Shores largest performance yet. Having to learn to forgive past foes and grant second chances in order to pull off this tight deadline.