Okay, there’s no getting around it: The new Guardians of Horsa graphic novel series feels like My Little Pony meets Pixar’s Elemental. But see what you think: “Welcome to the realm of Horsa, a world of magic, wild horses, and danger. The four elemental herds of Horsa live in uncertain peace, which is to say: stay out of each other’s way and all will be fine. But when signs of a mysterious prophecy about a yearling with untold magical powers appear, four young horses from each herd are called to action. Now these elemental enemies must work together to solve the prophecy, find the yearling, and restore balance to Horsa.” Multiple volumes are available now in trade paperback, written by Roan Black and illustrated by the Glass House Graphics team.
We’re mostly about anthropomorphic animals around here, obviously, but now and then it’s interesting to find a project about real-life non-humans and their adventures. Such is the case with Four-Fisted Tales: Animals In Combat, a new non-fiction graphic novel by Ben Towle. “In virtually every military conflict in recorded history animals have fought — and often died — alongside their human counterparts. While countless stories of the men and women who’ve served in the trenches, jungles, and deserts of the world’s battlefields have been told, Four-Fisted Tales: Animals in Combat shares the stories of the animals who fought alongside them. From Hannibal’s elephants in ancient Rome to mine-sniffing rats in Vietnam and everything in between, Four-Fisted Tales highlights the real-life contributions of these underappreciated animal warriors. Whether in active combat or simply as companions, these animals served and made their mark on history.” It’s available now from Dead Reckoning.
So Netflix brings us a new generation of My Little Pony? Then IDW is sure to bring us a new generation of My Little Pony comic book — with an easy title too: My Little Pony. “Join Sunny, Izzy, Zipp, Pipp, Hitch, and their trusty sidekick Cloudpuff as they explore a brand-new Equestria following the magical events of the hit Netflix movie! With magic returned to Equestria, the ponies are more united than ever — at least until one of the Unity Crystals is stolen! Can the Mane 5 find the culprit before magic is gone for good? And where’s Cloudpuff leading them, anyway? Is this . . . Canterlot?!” Written by Celeste Bronfman, and illustrated by fan-favorite artist Amy Mebberson.
The long running My Little Pony is introducing its latest toyline "generation" with what was supposed to be a theatrical movie. Due to the whole "ongoing pandemic" thing, that was mostly canceled (it was released theatrically in a few regions) and the whole thing moved to the streaming service Netflix, where any further spin-offs will also be held. My Little Pony: A New Generation is directed by Robert Cullen and José Luis Ucha with co-director Mark Fattibene, and has been available on Netflix since September 24 in most regions.
Not to beat around the bush, but the last time My Little Pony launched, it was kind of a thing. I'm sure the vast majority of Flayrah's readership is well aware of the "brony" subculture, but if you somehow missed it, or would just like a refresher, this Ursa Major-nominated video by YouTuber Jenny Nicholson is recommended – though you could always troll through Flayrah's "My Little Pony" tag. The upshot: there are higher expectations attached to this series relaunch than usual.
It can be difficult to raise money for good causes. In doing so, a bit of creativity can be king. So in the late 1990s the New York Fire Department had created an interesting idea to titillate some interest in giving money to help raise funding for their organizations. This calendar of heroes would be a yearly staple for the Big Apple, each month having one of their own posing with a warm smile, usually shirtless. This idea has been emulated by other firefighting organizations following its success.
Whether this was the inspiration when Artwork Tee when they decided to round up a bunch of fursuiters for their idea for their own charity calendar, I am not sure. What is certain is that these costumed furs will be far less exposed than their firefighter counterparts. In fact they will be quite heavily dressed in their animal costumes as they try to "Save the Baby Horses".
LionsGate Entertainment, best known, at least furry and animation-wise, for Alpha and Omega and its various direct to video sequels, has released a trailer for its January 15, 2016 theatrical movie, Norm of the North, which features a polar bear taking a trip to New York City to save the Arctic ice cap.
At least the scene where titular polar bear Norm meets a man in a polar bear suit is interesting from a furry standpoint.
Perhaps more exciting than the trailer itself is the announcement of the release date, which sees the movie go up directly against The Nut Job 2; it seems release date power plays aren't just for superhero movies, anymore. It may be interesting to see if either movie "flinches" in this cinematic game of chicken.
Image copyright Bob Carr of Getty Images
Also, colt American Pharoah has won the Triple Crown, becoming the first horse to win the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and, finally today, the Belmont Stakes since Affirmed in 1978. American Pharoah is only the twelfth horse to win all three races since Sir Barton became the first in 1919.
Recently a new young-readers’ book series premiered, courtesy of Jennifer Lynn Alvarez. Starfire is the first book in her new series The Guardian Herd, featuring a society of talking pegasi. “Once every hundred years, a black foal is born, prophesied to either unite or destroy the five herds of flying horses that live in Anok—fated to become the most powerful pegasus in all of the land. Star is this black foal. Even though Star has malformed wings that make him unable to fly, the leaders of each herd will take no risks and want to execute Star before his first birthday. With the help of his friends, Star must escape the clutches of the powerful leaders, and his epic journey of self-discovery turns into a battle between good and evil that will keep readers eagerly turning the pages.” They’ll have more pages to turn this coming April when Stormbound (the second book in the series) hits the shelves. Check out the official page from Harper Collins Publishers to find out more.
Hillary Bradfield describes herself as an animator, comic creator, and storyboard artist. Most recently she’s spent her time working on Disney XD’s Randy Cunningham, 9th Grade Ninja. On her own though, she’s created a comic strip adventure called Hank the Horse over on her blogspot. Follow the adventures of a cranky equine as he’s dragged along on a wild adventure by a young lady — who happens to look a lot like Hillary draws herself. Some of her Hank comics have been collected on dead trees as well, and Volumes 1 & 2 are available on her blogspot also.
We’ve got three issues from what are becoming the core books of this Pull List series of articles.
The oldest title in the series is Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which has been around since the first Pull List and 14 issues have appeared in 14 other pull lists, counting this one. Eight spin-off issues, including the original Micro-Series, the Villains Micro-Series and The Secret History of the Foot Clan have also appeared in seven Pull Lists, bringing the total TMNT number to 23 issues in 22 Pull Lists.
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic began at the beginning with #1 in Pull List #6. Since then, 10 other issues have appeared in nine other Pull Lists, with seven issues of its Micro-Series featuring in seven Pull Lists, bring the franchise’s total up to 18 issues in 17 Pull Lists.
The new kids on the block are the Guardians of the Galaxy, with seven issues in seven Pull Lists and no spin-offs, so they’re also the easiest to keep track of.
Another day, another Pull List.
Today, we’ve got some IDW titles, including issues from two very different Micro-Series. One is from the My Little Pony Micro-Series, which features cute adventures, and another is from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Villains Micro-Series.
It doesn’t feature cute adventures.
Watership Down tries to be as realistic as possible except for its intelligent, talking rabbits.
The Heavenly Horse is much more fantastically complex, with its structured organization of equine herds into formal officers, the concepts of the Army of One Hundred and Five (a representative of each of the domesticated breeds of horses) who live in the horsey heaven known as the Courts of the Outermost West and the equine equivalents of Satan: the Dark Horse, his lieutenant, the fanged horse Anor the Destroyer, and the Soul Taker, who tempts horses into betraying themselves.
The Heavenly Horse from the Outermost West, by Mary Stanton, illustrated by Judith Mitchell, Riverdale, NY, Baen Books, June 1988, [4 +] 344 pages, 0-671-65410-1, paperback, $3.95.
Piper at the Gate, by Mary Stanton, illustrated, Riverdale, NY, Baen Books, May 1989, [6 +] 306 [+ 2] pages, 0-671-69820-6, paperback, $3.50.