So, as some of you may know, I absolutely love My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. What brings me to write right now when I wasn’t even all that excited about season 6 because I was still bitter about how quickly everyone forgave Starlight Glimmer and how she was going to be apart of the main cast when poor Sunset Shimmer was still stuck at Canterlot High and blah blah blah?
Reunited meet cute happened.
Well, it starts a bit earlier than that. Here’s the key thing about building a good ship: you get a good crew if you’ve got good captains–er, characters. The audience doesn’t have to relate to the character, but should be able to emphasize with them to some degree. I was so bitter about Starlight and wishing she’s go away forever until Twilight said she’d be meeting with Sunburst. Not only can you see on Starlight’s face how absolutely terrified she is when the idea is brought up, but she quite literally has auditory hallucinations that block Twilight out. I can emphasize with her because she was literally evil last year and now has to tell her best friend who left her behind about it, and she’s terrified that he won’t forgive her (even though everyone else has so quickly). I also sympathize with her because I have a buzzing in my ears when I’m under extreme stress. I’m extremely curious to see if these auditory hallucinations are brought back if Starlight’s put under the right amount of stress, and if the show will ever address it.
I wasn’t completely won over to this plot until Starlight meets Sunburst and…and it’s too cute I can’t
I absolutely love Sunburst’s really unique color scheme, his cloak, his beard, his glasses, and even his tweedy voice. Combine that with the very adult situation of “oh hey we were friends as kids but lost touch now we’re adults WHAT YEAH I’M DOING AWESOME I’M SURE YOU’RE DOING AWESOME AHAHAHA I’M NOT A FAILURE IN LIFE AHAHAHA” just completely won me over with these two. It’s obvious that Sunburst is lying through his teeth, we see that they have way high expectations of each other and they clearly have their own regrets that we know or can easily guess at.
Predictability is not a bad thing, especially when there’s a little unpredictability mixed into it. Starlight might become angry at Sunburst for leaving her behind for magic school and not even become the great wizard he was supposed to be. Sunburst might be fearful of Starlight’s genuinely terrifying powers and her past evilness, even though she’s on the road to personal redemption. They could have been angry at the end of act 2 only to hastily make up before act 3 ended.
Instead, we get this:
But Giddy, you benevolent barn owl, I thought you wanted righteous justice against Starlight Glimmer and hated how everyone forgave her so easily. And while this is true, Sunburst forgiving Starlight Glimmer is a lot different than the Our Town ponies and the Mane 6 forgiving her instantly:
- He never directly had to fight her as an evil villain, he only knew her as a childhood friend that he was kind of a butt to by leaving her behind and butt-bumping her as he celebrates his cutie-mark.
- He even admits that, had he reached out, he could have helped prevent her from going evil. This in no way excuses Starlight’s actions, nor are her previous actions Sunburst’s fault. However, I can sympathize with that feeling of “if I hadn’t been a jerk then, we could have been different now” that I think Sunburst may be feeling.
- It’s clear that Sunburst carries a lot of shame for not being the great wizard he and Starlight thought he would become, and carries shame for lying to Starlight. Because she forgave him so quickly and kindly, he’s more likely to return the favor when Starlight reveals her own past and fears.
- You could totally tell with that glasses-slide that he now has a crush on Starlight. Yes this is a valid reason to forgive someone shut up.
In the spirit of all this forgiveness, especially on this Easter Sunday, I’ll forgive the season 5 finale’s extremely rushed redemption of Starlight Glimmer. Without it, we wouldn’t have had this episode that gives Starlight Glimmer and Sunburst’s relationship to blossom.
AND BOY DOES IT BLOSSOM:
Here’s where I think the writers are setting these characters up for not only a platonic rekindling, but a possible romantic relationship as well: they complement each other and bring out the best in each other. Sunburst has extended knowledge on not only magic spells but magical theory to a point where he can pull up new spells at the drop of a hat. He just don’t have the magical chops to do it, but Starlight Glimmer very much does. Starlight’s aggressive, but without that aggression she wouldn’t have been able to get Sunburst to the castle nor convince the other ponies once he announced he wasn’t really a wizard to give his idea a shot anyway. I actually really like how Starlight’s aggression is shown to be a positive and negative aspect in her life. Her aggression helps her get things done, but you can see when she finally spills her guts to Sunburst (as well as season 5) that she struggles with anger. Hopefully we’ll get to explore that aspect of her character further in the season!
Also, these two are literally made for each other. Just ask that ol’ hippogryph Silver Quill about color theory:
At least Sunburst does have an identity outside of Starlight, and I’m intensely curious to know more about magic school and what happened after magic school. His line about knowing a lot about magic but not really being able to do it really hit the heartstrings, and I want to see more. So hopefully we won’t have to say goodbye to Sunburst anytime soon! In fact, he may be an excuse for Starlight to visit the Crystal Empire, home of the princess and prince of One True Love, wherein the love-powered Crystal Heart lies…
What with the changeling sighting at the end of the episode, I wouldn’t be surprised by another Canterlot Wedding-esque season 6 finale only with a much more developed relationship I can root for. Keep your claws crossed!