Story By: Meghan McCarthy

Adaption By: Justin Eisinger

Lettering & Design By: Gilberto Lazcano

Published By: IDW Publishing

 

The opening two episodes to Season Five of the My Little Pony animated series have been adapted from screen to graphic novel for all to enjoy. As Twilight gets used to her new castle, she and the rest of the Mane Six uncover an enchanted map in their meeting room. As their cutie marks begin to glow in unison, they determine that they are being guided to a secluded town. Their mission is to help ponies who are in dire need of a lesson in friendship. Just who will they meet this time and what new friends will they make?

This is a recap of the beginning of the Season Five premiere, as Twilight and the gang discover the Cutie Map within Twilight’s new home. They have zero time to figure out the purpose of this object before the map starts reacting to their Cutie Marks. Whisked off on another adventure, the Mane Six travel to the end of the rails in search of a town in need of their help. This book also brings us our first encounter with the unicorn, Starlight Glimmer.

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Our misguided new unicorn character is a personal favourite of mine. Starlight Glimmer is now a regular character in the show and has even had several appearances in the MLP comics so far. The story of how she first met Princess Twilight is an interesting one, as each had opposing ideals regarding friendship. Twilight believes that every pony should embrace their talents and friendship is possible between everyone. Starlight, in comparison, sees Cutie Marks as the sole problem when it comes to forming true friendship; she believes only in equality and blank flanks for all ponies. Fluttershy also plays a big part in this issue, especially when it comes to deceiving Starlight, and we also get several more characters joining the cast as well.

Distrust, the misuse of magic, lies, deceit and selfishness are on Starlight Glimmer’s agenda in this issue. She doesn’t exactly earn herself any friends or forgiveness when the truth comes out. Her magic does seem impressive though, so much so that she even announces that she has spent several years learning the particular spell for detaching cutie marks. This delusional unicorn is up against the Elements of Harmony and the newly crowned Princess of Friendship, so she obviously stands no chance. However, the inhabitants of the town she ruled will play their own part in the story.

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Now, this issue is slightly different from the other MLP comics I usually review, insomuch that the images used in this are taken directly from the show with speech bubbles added for the readers. Technically, the artwork is provided by the animation team of the show. So, this calls for a shout-out to Hasbro Studios & DHX Media/Vancouver for their work on the show. It really does look fantastic, and as regular readers know, I am always comparing artwork from other reviews to the actual animation.

This is certainly a good issue, and the first two-episode special of every season is always something I look forward to. It never fails to deliver the action and sets the stakes high for every episode there after. This comic is no different. It is worth grabbing while you can, and is available online or from all good bookshops.

Overall: 9/10

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