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    Season Eight Episode Reviews: Horse Play

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Dec
18th
2013

Comic Review: Micro #10 (Luna) · 2:17pm Dec 18th, 2013

Verily, let us look at Princess Luna's Micro Comic!


Luna has had an exciting night battling owlbears and bringing home rabid marsupials (she now has a pet possum named Tiberius), while Celestia is getting ready for a busy day of meetings, public appearances, and courtly matters. But alas for Luna, she has let her ego get too large, to the point where it pushes out her common sense and makes her say the most foolish thing anyone can say in fiction: that someone else has an easier job. After enough prodding, Celestia finally decides to make her put her bits where her mouth is and lets her take over for the day.

At first, Luna is overjoyed. Surely she will prove herself to be just as capable as her sister at ruling both day and night. That is, if it wasn't for Kibitz, Celestia's adviser who keeps her on a strict schedule and diet. Can Luna survive and get everything done, despite not getting any sleep?

I have made no secret of my dread for this issue. It's a Luna story where Celestia gives her the day to rule, and then runs off to a secret spa while her sister is driven progressively more and more insane by the job's demands. This is a fandom that will bend over backwards at times to make Celestia into an absolute tyrant, and Luna a victim of her sister's perpetual cruelty and trollish behavior. But for the most part, I thought the comic did a really good job balancing the two out.

Luna's character here is similar to how she was in “Luna Eclipsed,” only even more extreme. She still has trouble with contractions, and her ideas are old fashioned, but this time we get to see some of the...shall we say, darker aspects of being out of time. She has a lot of trouble referring to the regular citizenry of Equestria as anything other than “peasants,” and has to work through some even worse choices before finally settling on “civilians” before going right back to peasants anyway. During a meeting, she mentions Celestia having the “patience of a zebra,” which sounds pretty damn racist when you stop and think about it for more than a minute. And later on, she and Fancy Pants decide to play chess...using other guests at the castle gardens as pieces. You would think these would be the behaviors Celestia would want to iron out first, even before the Royal We and ROYAL CANTERLOT VOICE.

Kibitz is...um...kind of annoying. Granted, that's his role. He's the stereotypical adviser who's hooked to his schedule and will never back away from it no matter what. And he does manage to get some good moments of his own, like when he stops Luna from using the Judgment of Solomon on a sheep, or when he wonders if Celestia would banish him to the moon for Luna's behavior. (Needless to say, Luna reacts to the allusion with barely-bridled rage.) And he does bounce off of Luna's out-of-date antics and desperate search for anything interesting in her daily duties. So I guess they just wrote him too well, making him such an annoying git that I was waiting for Luna to buck him into the sun.

Which brings us to Celestia. When the long previews came out, there was a lot of outcry over Celestia showing up to “steal” her sister's spotlight, much like with the Celestia issue a couple months ago. (Needless to say, this didn't calm my fears about how the fandom would construe this issue.) But for the most part, Celestia just stays out of the way at her spa. Normally, this could just be seen as more trolling, but the comic keeps pointing out that everypony thinks she's really watching from the shadows, ready to pounce and save the day if Luna messes up. In the end, she's just a pony like everyone else who finally got a day off, and in the end, Luna does an okay job keeping things going, even with her complete meltdown at the end. Nothing about Celestia's behavior is particularly dickish is all I'm saying. Even when she gives Luna the job, it's only after trying to talk her down and explain that things are really difficult; it isn't until Luna takes one jab too many that she finally makes a face that screams:

The art is mostly your typical Price/Cooke material, full of background references and gags. There's the usual massive group shot that's essentially a “Where's Waldo?” game of spotting the references, and the art has the appropriate cartoon feel. One thing that was cute, though, was the possum Luna found in the trash. It follows her throughout the issue, swiping goodies and just being an adorable oversized rat. I now demand a five hundred page fanfic depicting its amazing adventures. Although I don't think it's long for this world considering how much Philomena seems to hate it.

So, in the end, the Luna issue was pretty fun, and a nice way to end the Micro Series. I even ended up liking it the most of the two issues, which is kind of surprising considering how on-edge I was going in.


See you tonight for a final breakdown of the Micro series.

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Comments ( 16 )

I haven't even read it, and that possum is the best thing ever.:rainbowkiss:

But for the most part, I thought the comic did a really good job balancing the two out.

And, in Celestia's defense, she did try to convince Luna that it'd be a bad idea.

Also, the opossum's named Tiberus? Aw...I wanted it to be named Roderick. I don't know why, it just seems like an opossum name.

You would think these would be the behaviors Celestia would want to iron out first, even before the Royal We and ROYAL CANTERLOT VOICE.

Do we know when this comic takes place? Because there's a nonzero chance that it takes place before "Luna Eclipsed," and so in fact those bad habits WERE ironed out first...with no time left over for the Royal Canterlot Voice before Luna's trip to Ponyville.

Although I don't think it's long for this world considering how much Philomena seems to hate it.

Even without Philomena it's not long for this world...most opossums only live two to four years, and age very, very rapidly in their final days (this is true for most marsupials, though).

Sad to say the fandom will still find faults in Celestia. Though honestly letting Luna take over for a day does sound reasonable when is being driven to frustration. I do think it takes place before Luna Eclipse, probably sometime after she regained her powers

I rather enjoyed this issue, both Luna’s part and especially Celestia's part.

There's the usual massive group shot that's essentially a “Where's Waldo?” game of spotting the references,

With an actual Waldo pony!

Hehehe I liked the reference to the Navigator dance from the Big Mac story XD

It's a bit sad that the micro series is ending, we could have gotten a Cadence issue, maybe Cheerilee and Zecora and other side characters! Would have been fun.

Luna, you don't need to fear copyrights in regard to owlbears, Hasbro owns Wizards of the Coast! It was a Tiberius to hold an accessory for Luna's brushable mane :pinkiehappy:

Oh Celestia...they made an actual History of the world reference? That is so awesome!

1620730

Do we know when this comic takes place? Because there's a nonzero chance that it takes place before "Luna Eclipsed," and so in fact those bad habits WERE ironed out first...with no time left over for the Royal Canterlot Voice before Luna's trip to Ponyville.

Actually, there is no chance. The Crystal Empire comes up repeatedly in this issue. Even the most diehard supporters of the "the episodes are aired out of chronological order" theory would have difficulty arguing that "Luna Eclipsed" occurs after "The Crystal Empire."

I loved the references everywhere, the fact that the border is composed of an ever-growing pile of coffee cups, and the issue in general. One thing I was less a fan of, was making Luna seem more... Immature, sometimes. At one point she was on the floor, begging/pouting for cake for instance (although I will admit that that was both cute and funny). Granted it could be put down to sleep deprivation and not being used to the workload, but seriously, in the time that she ruled beforehand, not one bit of paperwork was handed to her? Also, given how little time she was apparently spending on some of the activities, (chatting with the guards, meeting with a winter snow day committee and holding an open, albeit short-lived, court, all before 9:07,) she has a remarkably short attention span for a pony older than a millennium.
Two moments I did particularly like, were when Kibitz made an allusion to be banished to the moon and it's made it quite clear that she is still touchy about that subject, and when she's finally had enough and it becomes apparent that she looks badass when she's angry.

I now demand a five hundred page fanfic depicting its amazing adventures. Although I don't think it's long for this world considering how much Philomena seems to hate it.

Perhpase some Tom & Jerry antics would be in order then. :rainbowdetermined2:

1620730

Aw...I wanted it to be named Roderick. I don't know why, it just seems like an opossum name.

Not sure if I should feel honored or offended. :trixieshiftright:

1622799
Your name is Roderick? It's a good name. It just also seems like an opossum name.

I'm stuck with Christopher. The only things named Christopher. No pet is named Christopher.

1623034
Middle name actually, and one of three to be even more specific.

I also hate the way celestia is treated in the fandom.

Easily the best micro and a fitting swan song for them, with its art and humour banishing the Celestia one to the sun to be burned in all of its ho-hum mediocre-ness. Kibitz never felt annoying to me, quite the opposite. He played the straight man (stallion?) in the face of Luna's absurdity and served as an excellent foil, providing the necessary character to drive the plot while not getting in the way of Luna's antics (in a metaphorical sense).

Moreover, I'd even go so far as to say that Celestia was fleshed out better in her secondary role here moreso than in her own micro, where she served mostly as a storyteller and gave characterisation to the teacher instead of herself. That was a large part of why Celestia's was so disappointing; having the promise of shedding light on what had hitherto been a somewhat enigmatic character, only to have that swept away for some uninteresting history about a teacher who hasn't been seen before and won't be seen again. All we really learned from that is Celestia respects her war veterans far better than the White House does.

1622269

How can you resist 'Can I haz cake?' Luna? Only the fact I didn't actually have any cake with me when I read it prevented me from giving the comic cake, I even considered getting some cake specifically for that purpose.

I looked up the word Kibitz, it's verb of the word Kibitzer, a giver of uninvited or unwanted advice.:facehoof:

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