I’m going to get a lot of flak for this entry. Wouldn’t be the first time. In my last list, I received a lot of hate for including the Pony.MOV series. Even if a fan work is clearly disturbing, if it’s popular enough, people will hate your for hating it.
No, scratch that, they will hate you for not liking it. Even the mildest of criticism is enough to invoke the greatest rage if it’s targeted at something vastly popular, especially when that popularity is not deserved.
Case in point:
But I digress.
Before I start, let me say that I absolutely love abridged series. I love when fans love a series enough that they create their own satirical dub of it that pokes fun at its most glaring flaws. So believe me when I say I understand why others find these series appealing.
Which series do I like the most? All of them! Yu-Gi-Oh! Abridged. Dragonball Z Abridged. Sailor Moon Abridged. Naruto Abridged (But only the original Vegeta and MasakoX version). Yu-Gi-Oh GX Abridged. None Piece. If there’s an abridged series, I’m a fan of it.
So seeing as how I love abridged series and My Little Pony, you would think that combining the two would be like combining peanut butter and chocolate. That seemed to be the case until I saw Friendship is Witchcraft, which is more like combining peanut butter and dog turds.
To be absolutely blunt, Friendship is Witchcraft is not funny. I don’t me “not funny” as in “offensive” (though there are plenty of off-color jokes). I mean “not funny” as in “they make jokes and I don’t laugh.”
In comparison, even when Yu-Gi-Oh! Abridged or Dragonball Z Abridged are at their worst, they still manage to get a chuckle out of me. Of the few episodes that I’ve seen of Friendship is Witchcraft, not one has managed to get me to so much as even smirk. Each one involved me staring at my computer screen with an unchanged blank expression throughout.
To give you an idea of what the humor is like in this series, two of the recurring jokes in the first episode were of characters exclaiming “Talk about eye candy!” (especially in places where the joke made no sense) and recycled footage of Twilight Sparkle telling Bon-Bon to continue watering the flowers.
That’s the bar this series sets for its humor. That bad, people! That bad!
And yes, I know those two gags are supposed to be a satire of running gags, but you see, that only works if the satire itself is actually funny. If it’s not, then playing it over and over again is not going to make it any less unfunny.
What did the Nostalgia Critic say? Oh yes! Not Funny + Not Funny = Not F***ing Funny!
The extent to which these jokes are unfunny range from being too long (Fluttershy’s revelation of her backstory), too mean-spirited (Spike being relegated as the buttmonkey of the series), or just being nonsensical (characters saying random words like “cloud” or “stick”).
How unfunny are these jokes? So much so that they require a “wah-wah” trumpet sound effect to point them out, sort of like how unfunny sitcoms require laugh tracks to show the audience when to laugh. If you need to let the audience know when a joke has been made, chances are your jokes are not funny.
I swear the “wah-wah” music is played so many times that it would break Nostalgia Critic’s “wa-wa“ machine!
As much as I want to riff on this series, I really can’t go into too much detail about it. Of its nine episodes, I’ve only seen three, and personally, one was enough.
I kid you not when I say I much rather watch the Pony.MOV series than this tripe. As horrendous as Pony.MOV is, at least it tries to be original with its own art style and twist on the MLP characters, which at least show that the creator has a better grasp of the show than Friendship is Witchcraft.
If you want to see this series torn a new plothole, I would suggesting watching the reviews by VoiceOfReaon and TheMysteriousMrEnter. As both of them have sat through the entire series (Celestia have mercy on their poor souls), they can better detail everything wrong with it.
But for the sake of this entry, I’m going to highlight the most disturbing and infamous episode of this disturbing and infamous series: "Foaly Matripony".
#9: Friendship is Witchcraft's "Foaly Matripony"
Oh yeah, this is where I pick up from my last entry about the Twilight/Shining shipping. You want to know how low that can get? This is how low it can get.
Obviously, this episode is a parody of “Canterlot Wedding”, so they’re taking one of the best episodes of the series and degrading it to the lowest common denominator.
The episode starts off like the original: the Mane 6 are having a picnic while Spike is being chased by a panther (yeah, like I said, completely mean-spirited) when they receive a wedding invitation from Princess Celestia. The big reveal here is that the wedding is for Twilight’s older brother. (Oh, and that Twilight has a brother!)
Now in the original, Twilight is distraught that her brother is only telling her now about his own wedding, especially since they had such a close relationship together in Canterlot. Well, here, the main conflict is that Twilight's distraught because she wants to be the one to marry her brother.
Because she’s in love with him. She’s in love with her older brother. Whom she wants to marry. And supposedly bang. Did I mention she’s in love with her brother? Her older brother? Whom she wants to—YOU GET THE IDEA!
And just to add to the overall creep factor, Twilight sings about her burning passion for her own brother:
How do I describe this song? Has anyone ever suffered through Not Another Teen Movie? Remember the big musical number they had before the prom? Remember that one line from the sister who wanted to have sex with her brother?
Well, imagine if that entire song was that one line? That’s “I’ll Be Okay” (“I Gave You My Heart And You Turned Around”) in a nutshell.
And the worst part is that this is otherwise a good song. The music is great, and the animation is very well done, being reminiscent of the animated sequence from the original "Canterlot Wedding." But the subject matter is just cringeworthy. If you have to listen to this song, don’t do so after eating. You will lose your lunch.
Even more annoying about this entire episode is how the characters hammer in the point that Twilight’s love for her brother is not creepy (or in many cases, they do admit it's creepy). Why? Because in this version, Shining Armor is her “adopted” brother, which mean they’re not really biologically-related.
Well, when you put it that way, IT’S STILL F***ING CREEPY!
It doesn’t matter how many times these cardboard cutouts claim that they’re not related, because we know in the back of our minds that they really are, and telling us otherwise doesn’t absolve that. Even more so, telling us this is not creepy does not make this less creepy. It just makes it more so.
It’s like what the Nostalgia Critic said in his Cat in the Hat review: telling us that a joke isn’t painful doesn’t make it less painful. It makes it more so.
The rest of the episode is Twilight trying to ruin the wedding by attempting to prove that Princess Cadence is evil—which is really hard to do in this parody because they make her out to be the purest of pure souls, being a world peace advocate, an organ donor, a wildlife conservationist, a children’s book author, and the freely-elected leader of her own country. Oh, and she’s so special that she donated her entire wedding budget to cancer research.
In the end, Twilight ends up getting her way: she ends the wedding, traps Princess Cadence in the underground mines (and presumably kills her), and ends up marrying her brother— and they all live creepily ever after!
Oh, and just to add insult to injury, the episode ends with the skeletal remains of Princess Cadence rotting in the mines.
What else is there to say about this episode and the poor excuse of a series? The jokes are not funny, the characters are unlikable one-dimensional cardboard cutouts, the jokes are not funny, the incest plotline makes me want to bathe in bleach, and, oh yeah, did I mention the jokes are not funny?
In conclusion, Friendship is Witchcraft is as funny as a boot kick to your nads.
Now if you excuse me, I have to watch something slightly less unfunny to get this bad taste out of my mouth. Something tells me Epic Movie will be a step above this.
How disturbing is it? So much so it makes Pony.MOV look good.