Looking back, it's still hard to imagine this would be so significant to me a year ago, I tried seeing the first episode, but the cutesie opening exposition just turned me off. However, seeing the sheer intensity of the unprecedented fandom from this show just became too strong and audacious to ignore. So, I decided to seriously see what the fuss was about
At first, the series seemed largely ordinary with an epic fantasy adventure story very much in the spirit of the franchise's first TV appearance in 1984, but with an odd wry humour puncturing the property's notorious overwrought earnestness. However, the first hints of what the series would be truly appear in the title sequence that begins with the usual superficial lyricism and suddenly dives into a rock tune that makes it really clear that the show will be taking a different path.
Until episode 9, "Bridle Gossip," when it will suddenly grab you as the series suddenly and truly hits its stride. This episode finally works with the same kind of character based humour that made Jim Henson's Muppet Show become the enthralling demographic spanning TV masterpiece in the 1970s. Specifically, this story about prejudice only works when you know the characters and how the jokes play to their most fundamental natures. Moreover, your patience will be rewarded at the 3/4 mark when you are laughing hysterically as two characters take a silly hyperactive song repeated endlessly in the story and reluctantly have to improvise in the most bizarre circumstances. I could show you the clip, but like I said, it only really works when you are willing to know the characters well enough to understand the humour.
After that, you will be watching this series voraciously as that broken ice allows you to accept the show's deft charm and heart with an opened mind. Furthermore, the wildly creative fandom will entrance you equally well, whether it the endless fan fiction creativity displayed at Equestria Daily or the tuneful filk songs of the Beatle Bronies.
This is not say the show is flawless; the second season suffers from the Hasbro Inc.'s mandated loose continuity that makes some episodes like "Sweet and Elite" make no sense since the high society treat the Mane Cast like hick nobodies after they have become the national heroes decorated by their sovereign while some characters like Rainbow Dash and her overbearing arrogance gets a bit grating.
But on the whole, the series is a delight that is sadly apparently coming to a close with only 13 episodes scheduled for next season to apparently reach the typical animated series episode cut off of 65. Regardless, what a gloriously relatively long strange trip it has been and I hope to enjoy the rest while there is still some distance to go.