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My Little Pony: Guardians of Harmony
by yo go re

Now that Shocka has finished up his Rick and Morty series, let's review something from a cartoon that could surely never attract unlikeable, creepy fans!

She has amazing lasso skills!

There was already an Applejack in that same weird boxed set that meant Pinkie Pie was technically a double-dip for me, but it had all kinds of problems. So many problems that the announcement of this Guardians of Harmony figure was incredibly welcome! Of course, most stores seem to have skipped her series (it was her and Daring-Do), so it's at least somewhat reassuring that the "girls' toys" section has the same kind of problems we're used to with "boys' toys."

Of all the Friendship is Magic characters, Applejack is the only one to retain her name from back in Generation 1 - just like GI Joe and the Transformers, MLP had a lot of trademarks lapse over the years, and it was easier to just rename things when the new show started than to try to find ways to work around it - Hasbro can't just append "Autobot" or "Cobra" to the front of a pony's name and expect it to work, y'know?

One of the problems with gift set Applejack was her nudity. Calm down, internet weirdos, it's not like that! On the cartoon, Applejack is a farmer, so she dresses like... well, like a cowboy. She typically wears a cowboy hat and a green handkerchief tied around her neck, and the previous figure had neither. This one gets them both though, and they're both removable pieces! The bandana has a small clip keeping it closed, while the hat has notches her ears can fit through, and unobtrusive tabs that press against the ears to ensure the hat stays on securely. Clever work, smartly done!

Another oddity on the last AJ had to do with her mane. According to the animation model, Applejack wears her pony mane in a ponytail - it falls over one side of her neck or the other. Attempting to make it so the figure would look "correct" no matter which way you had her facing, the toy had two ponytails, one going down each side. That's... not correct. GoH Applejack just has one, falling to the left. That's the same side as her cuite mark (three apples), so it's clear which side Hasbro expects you to view her from. Because again, they didn't bother to tampo the mark on her right hip.

As mentioned, Applejack is a farmer - specifically, she and her family grow apples. Why, it's almost as if her name relates to her profession! What are the odds! Anyway, since a pony with no hands can't exactly pick apples when they're ripe, she has a different method of getting the fruit out of the trees: applebucking. No, that isn't something you need to look up on Urban Dictionary, it just means she kicks the trees hard and shakes the fruit loose (in pre-production, it was going to be "applebumping," and she was going to use her head, not her hooves). Thanks to her articulation, the figure can get into the pose to do that, but you'll have to balance her against something.

Since the hat and scarf are technically accessories, Applejack is already doing pretty well for herself. She also comes with a lasso, and the same kind of brown cuff that Daring-Do wore; as we told you in that review, it's a mount for a piece included with AJ: it's a silver piece, designed to look like metal, and when you plug the lasso in, spinning the dial on the sides of the piece will allow the rope to twirl. It's kind of a clunky play feature, but it's not housed inside toy figure, so it's fine. She also gets one of the little golden badges that can attach to her leg or a kid's shirt.

Technically, with the release of Applejack, we only need one more main character to complete the set (Twilight Sparkle was in the first series [though in a powered-up form] and Fluttershy was a sneak preview in an SDCC exclusive). Hasbro's currently releasing pirate-themed variants of the figures, but hopefully soon they'll be back to the vanilla offerings.

-- 12/15/17

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