Sweetest pegasus child, drawing him made me think of Aziraphale from Good Omens, but anyways-
Part of the $10 waist up/bust commissions I’m currently offering. If you’re interested, please check out the information below! I’m finishing these commissions within a 2-3 day time frame so even if they’re full up atm, don’t be afraid to ask! I’m turning them out fast!
Every Little Thing She Does and Writing Characters with Natural Abilities
You know what’s great about this episode? They acknowledge that Starlight’s special talent in magic is supposed to be over-powered. Just as much, if not more than Twilight herself– Starlight’s raw magical power comes naturally to her.
And just acknowledging it wouldn’t be all that special. In fact, it might feel like an excuse (like ‘See? We know it’s crazy rare for a unicorn to be this powerful! And knowing makes it okay, right??’ No, it doesn’t).
But they did something with it again. They built her character.
This entire episode is about Starlight leaning on her natural abilities. Magic always came easy for her (I mean, probably with a bit of study, because those Harry Potter/latin sounding magic words don’t just appear in her brain, but you still know what I mean), and that’s why when she’s panicking, it’s the first thing she goes to to fix the situation.
Starlight’s dependent on her natural talents and because of it, terrified of failure and rejection in any other area.
Her over-powered abilities aren’t just there to challenge Twilight as her magical and intellectual equal as a villain, but were actually used to develop and define her character!
This is cool mostly because dealing with a character whose talents come naturally to them can be really difficult in writing– especially this late in the game when we’ve already learned so many things about the world and have certain expectations for what should be possible already set up.
It’s one thing for a character to struggle to perform nigh-impossible feats– like Rainbow Dash struggling to perform the Sonic Rainboom in season 1, and Twilight, who learned her abilities a bit more gradually.
But, even though some people are just naturally better at some things in real life, in writing, it’s difficult to pull off without making them just over-powered and, well, mary-sueish.
I’ve defined it before, but a Mary Sue in my eyes has to meet 3 expectations:
1. Beloved - all the characters either love them or want to be them (and are often made villains for not loving them) 2. Naturally Gifted/ The Best there Ever Was - Someone who doesn’t have to work hard to develop astounding abilities or win the day 3.No Flaws - most importantly, they have no bad traits/character flaws (and if they do, they’re very minor)
Starlight’s still manipulative, smug, fears rejection, and justifies her own immoral actions without blinking, so she’s covered in the flaws department.
And while the montage at the end of season 5 makes it seem like everyone everywhere just loves her now [like the song at the end of season 3 made it look like Twilight could fly instantly], we know now it’s not the case. She hasn’t made enemies yet, true, but the townsfolk don’t trust her and Trixie so much, and characters are allowed to be mad at Starlight without needing to be in the wrong.
In a less loving show, I’d call that explanation a bit of an excuse, but the girls don’t tend to make a lot of enemies, or even too many unfriendly rivals like Trixie, so you do kinda have to keep in mind what’s normal around here.
But … what about number 2?
You see why I was a bit concerned with how they were going to handle her natural aptitude for magic. Even if she wouldn’t meet my Mary-Sue criteria on that category alone, it would still make her a far less identifiable and compelling character if she was just crazy good and met every challenge without real struggle.
So, watching this episode and seeing them actually build character around her abilities– not just by making her bad at other things, which she’s shown to be, but by making her afraid of being bad of even simple skills as a consequence of being so over-powered (another consequence is her smugness– so it’s shown to actually negatively impact her, unlike Twilight who’s more humble and had to work for her magic).
It feels more natural for Starlight to be over-powered now that there’s consequences that come with it. That’s just … really neat writing.
This Sweetiebloom is a part of my Sweetie collab series, this time with @atowncalledbedlam aka Dilarus!
Dil runs the blogs @meetthepones and @southernbelleaj with the help of @trevorrain, they’re all super cute with a dark humor twist and it’s fantastic. I really love Dil’s comic strip vibe and flow and it really compliments his work. Everything he draws feels so quick but it also packs so much expression and motion, and it’s cute to boot! Anyways, if you’ve never seen their work before, go check em out linked above!
This won’t be my last collab with Dil here either, so stay tuned for that.
Next up oughta be an Ask Sweetie cause I have been majorly slacking on them. But in the meantime, have a sneaky belle courtesy of Dilarus!