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23 September 2011

FG's 10 Favourite MLP: FiM Characters (by Final Gamer)

Most of the time you expect to find yourself in particular fandoms or circles of life as either a gamer, a series fan or into a book series.  But then comes that time when you enter one fandom and you quite honestly don't know HOW you got into this fandom, even if you know WHY.  The phenomenon of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic has proven that to me for the first time.  I knew I'd get into Pok√©mon.  I knew I'd get into Harry Potter.  But I, and surely many others, would never have expected to get into My Little least in this way.

So, to ride on the bandwagon from my good friend James Corck's own list, I have decided to make my own list of my favourite incidental My Little Pony characters, more or less because I feel this might be the point I can start breaking down and more fully accepting ponyhood into my heart.

Even if I have less patience than most for how much pony I can take every day compared to some.

Firstly, same rules as Corck's:

- Rule 1: No Mane Cast inclusions.  Even my personal favourites of Applejack and Fluttershy cannot be in this list because they belong in a higher echelon of greatness, known as "the protagonists".

- Rule 2: No alternate versions of the Mane Cast like Pinkamena Diane Pie, Psycho-Shy or their filly selves, after all they are still themselves, even if it is another side we are not used to seeing.

- Rule 3: Opinions are based series wise, not fanon wise.  Let's keep this fair since there are many MANY interpretations of each character from this already-exhaustively extensive fandom.

- Rule 4: Pets are included, even if they can’t utter a single word.  Personality means far more than just words alone.

10 - The Sea Serpent

Nicknamed "Steven Magnet" by Youtube's bizarrely poor subtitling, the sea serpent who resides in the Everfree Forest was already the sign of further greatness in a show that I was slowly starting to appreciate with each new character.  It's not entirely impossible for a show aimed towards girls to have at least one camp character (Angelina Ballerina is a perfect example of this) but the sea serpent is so LUDICROUSLY FLAMING that he's practically a parody.  And that's what he is, a parody, flamboyant and marvellous to the point of hilarious.
If he were just somewhat camp, it would not work as well and perhaps be insulting.  But when whacked up to 11 to the point of blatantness, you have a creature that I find quite frankly, to be the second most goddamn adorable reptile in the show.  And of course, he's a nice guy who keeps his promise to help the ponies after his troubles have been dealt with.  I'll take any aversion of the "Reptiles Are Abhorrent" trope any day.

9 - Gilda

Therein lies potential in every character for a relationship and a backstory.  Gilda is one of them.  All we know of her is that she was Rainbow Dash's old friend from Junior Flyers school, but she raises so many questions already.  Where do the griffons live in Equestria?  How long has she known Dash for?  Was she just naturally a bitch, or did life after school turn her that way?  Despite her bullying nature and lack of patience that is only barely upheld to look good in front of Dash, I find her to be very interesting.
Were she always such a bitch, it makes one wonder how Dash even became friends with her.  If she changed after school, it would make more sense, but it makes me wonder what made her like this, to the point of being intolerant of Dash's new friends and fellow Ponyvillian citizens.  I hope she returns one day for a further backstory of younger less bitter days.
Even if the feather-fucker made Fluttershy cry.

8 - Mrs. Sparkle

One of the bigger mysteries of the show are the Mane Cast's families.  Thanks to the glorious eye-opening episode that was "The Cutie Mark Chronicles" we managed to get quite a wonderful inlook into their lives.  But out of the six protagonists, only three of them showed to have any family.  Pinkie Pie had her faux-Amish roots, Applejack had her well-established farm-working family, and Twilight had a very standard living in Canterlot with her mother and father.  Already this intrigues me immensely.  Mrs. Sparkle in particular intrigues me moreso.
Firstly, she is a clearly good mother as we can tell from her eager support for her daughter to attend Celestia's school of gifted unicorns.  Secondly, her colours are a fantastic little in-joke of the very first generation, a shy multi-teleporting unicorn called Twilight Twinkle, right down to the hair strips.  Plenty of theorising can come from this but dealing with what we've seen in the show directly, I already want to see more of her purely for three things.
Her adorable looks for an older pony, her personality concerning being a mother, and potential further shout-outs or take thats to the G1 ponies.  It would also be adorable if Twilight got her childish enthusiasm from her mother.  Can you imagine the two going "YES YES YES YES YES YES YES"?  I sure can, and it's the most adorable thing.  But not as adorable as some of my other choices.

7 - Derpy Hooves

She began as a joke by a wildly animator who got bored drawing crowd scenes.  She became a minigame within the fandom to Spot The Wall-Eye.  She evolved into one of the most beloved and purely cherished characters in the fandom.  Compared to the treatment the others get, Derpy Hooves has become to the bronies what Yotsuba is to 4chan.  A beloved unofficial mascot representing childlike innocence and purity, to the point that very few would ever dare to taint her, or else suffer a protective backlash from the fandom itself.  And yet unlike Yotsuba, the rambunctious 4-year old toddler of children's manga, Derpy has never even said a single word in the show.
But her actions speak far louder than mere words can, especially the sounds of CLUNK, PLANK and KANG when she became officially part of the show, renamed and all, during Feeling Pinkie Keen, portrayed as the loveably hopeless mailmare.  Derpy Hooves.  The ascended meme.  Totem of innocence.  Lover of muffins.

6 - Braeburn

Braeburn is already an anomaly for two things.  Firstly, he is one of few male ponies with both an actual name AND a speaking role.  Secondly, he appears in the base-breaking episode "Over A Barrel".  Regardless of the episode itself, Braeburn is a loveable character.  He's strong yet not as stubborn as his cousin Applejack, loyal but not unreasonable if given a chance to explain, and above all, incredibly friendly.  He is also the most adorable male pony in the show.  Seriously, that hair makes him the cutest Appleloosian of all, there's not many I could call a likeable twink but Braeburn could definitely qualify for such.
Considering he was one of the few ponies of Appleloosa who was actually willing to make an agreement with the Buffalo tribe (were it not for the quarrels of other ponies somehow derailing the whole situation), he is certainly a kind-hearted likeable spokespony of his small frontierstown.

5 - Scootaloo

This may surprise you, but I absolutely love the Cutie Mark Crusaders.  For the three little audience connectors they are for the young girls growing up in a big ol' world, they actually present themselves very well with their constant realistically-stupid subversion of "be your true self", which they never listen to because they're goddamn kids.  Despite this, only two of the Cutie Mark Crusaders are on my list, the first being Scootaloo.  Firstly, her tomboyish nature at such a young age is a welcome refresher from all of the other adorably girlish fillies.  She's a rock chick, she hates clothes, she wanted to do a rock ballad for her talent show song even if she sucks at singing, and she's incredibly athletic.
It's not hard to see why the fandom love to consider her wanting to be a proteg√© of Rainbow Dash, which may not be entirely untrue considering such moments as her idolising trash pickup during the meteor shower of "Owl's Well That Ends Well".  The second reason I love her is that she's brutally honest, because goddamnit not another song I can't take this sugary crap anymore!
.......let's just say I can sympathise with her a liiiiiiiiittle bit, even if another more central character plays towards this part of the audience more.

4 - Princess Luna

The fabled other sister of the cosmically omniscient duo that is the sun and the moon of Equestria has already grown a magnificent throng of admirers since her purifying revelation of the pilot's ending.  From two lines of dialogue alone she captivated many people's hearts as a confused, remorseful younger sister.  She barely even tried to defend her actions as Nightmare Moon, immediately embracing her sister with a plea of forgiveness and with deep apologies of utmost sincerity.  Already that makes her an interesting character.  Was she even aware of her actions?  Who's to say, at least at the time of writing this.
Humility is something I admire in a character, and Princess Luna, unlike Fluttershy, actually has a reason to have such.  Whereas Fluttershy is.....well, shy, Luna makes herself penitent, with good reason, for whatever has occurred between these two, she immediately goes for forgiveness with a clear sense of regret.  And in those ten seconds alone she developed one of the most interesting characterisations.
It took Nintendo 22 years to do that with Luigi.  Just saying.

3 - Big Macintosh

Here we have another character whose presence has been felt since the very first episode.  In fact the top four have all been in the show since the very first episode.  Being the only one with a developed family in the show so far, Applejack has quite a few members of her circle, such as the gentle giant Big Macintosh.  Big Mac is the overshadowing behemoth whose very presence soothes all near him.  His simple answers, his kindly green eyes, the way he stands tall and firm, clearly a well-developed workhorse who is never without his yoke, around his shoulders to show that he is always ready to assist.
Purely from what little we see of him, we know he is perhaps the most studious hard-working pony of them all.  His logic is simple, he does not possess the flaws of Applejack's pride but he does not stand in her way to allow his point to be proven through example, his tail is cropped to not interfere with his work for he has no time for such personal distractions like having a good-looking tail.
He is a simple stalwart character, and one who not only calms down those around him, but would never step up to be the leader unless asked.  Humble yet hard-working.

2 - Spike

And immediately following Big Mac is a character who is completely his opposite in every single way.  He's not humble, he has little strength to give to work, he runs his mouth off and he's a reptile.  The most adorable reptile in the entire show, and a mainstay of every generation.  Spike is the most recognisable character to me in the history of My Little Pony, and to see his reinvention in FiM made me incredibly happy.  The original G1 Spike was adorably dorky in his own way.  Childishly eager with a very reptilian appearance composed of blunt sharp corners and a raspy squeaky voice like Mega Man from the Captain N show.
The new Spike retains some childish mannerisms but is also wonderfully snarky in the way a boy is with his sister (and in the way a guy can be to a show about girls sometimes), with his own level of relationships throughout the Mane cast, such as his adorable crush on Rarity and the interesting son/little-brother/assistant/best-friend relationship he has with Twilight, which remains somewhat ambiguous but is clearly a friendship that retains deeper than Twilight's newer friendships with the five other main ponies, since his birth.
Spike was the only character I liked in the original G1 show.  And he still remains a character I love in his newest incarnation with babylike proportions, a sharp tongue and having the disposition of an older kid who thinks he knows better than a filly, but is still restrained by both body and mind to be a little boy.

1 - Applebloom

And now we reach my favourite of them all.  Here we have one of the most complex, well-developed ponies within the grand cast of names, and the other of the Cutie Mark Crusaders I truly like.  Scootaloo is the crude but rude tomboy who rebels against all things girly.  Sweetie Belle is the absolutely effeminate fashionista wannabe who idolises her big sister.  Applebloom is but a combination of the two.
Her strength and determination matches well (or butts heads) with Scootaloo.  The fact that she looks up to her sister and is a handy craftspony links her well to Sweetie Belle.  She's resourceful from her natural sense of craftwork, determined with her family farm experience, brave enough to venture into the Everfree Forest not just with friends but also by herself, twice!
Scootaloo blends together the best and worst of the qualities of children.  Unquenchable enthusiasm, an open-minded eagerness to learn, an impossibly bull-headed determination to finish any job on whatever terrible path she took to do it (something she shares with her sister even to the point of ignoring others' advice), and above all, she's as cute as a goddamn button.
Applebloom, for all of these qualities combined, you are best pony


  1. Would be interesting to see this after season 2.

  2. You really should make a new list based on the first two seasons. Also, the "Cutie Mark crusaders" can't be included because, well, they are also main now, there have been too many episodes in season 2 focused exclusively on them for you to argue otherwise.
    Here's some suggestions:
    Chrysalis (cutest and most justified and complex villain ever)
    Discord (seriously he is something unique)
    Diamond Tiara (well why not?)