• INTERVIEW: MLP Comic Writer Ted Anderson talks MLP: FiM Issue #50!

    The fiftieth issue of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic drops tomorrow! To help celebrate the occasion, Equestria Daily had the honor to sit down and interview Ted Anderson about the soon to be released comic. And specifically what it means to have written the landmark fiftieth issue of the series!

    You can check it out in full after the break!

    The Illustrious Q: How does it feel to write the script for the 50th issue of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic?

    Ted Anderson: It is a huge honor and incredibly humbling. I had no idea I'd be working on this property for so long, and I'm thankful for everyone who's helped me out and worked with me along the way. I got to break into comics with one of my very favorite properties, and now I'm getting to write a landmark issue—it's extremely cool!

    TIQ: How did you come up with the idea of having Discord become a being of order for the arc?

    TA: Honestly, I'd been tinkering with this idea for a while—I always love the idea of turning a character with a single defining trait into their opposite, and seeing what changes and what remains the same. So it's been in the back of my mind for probably a year, at least. When I heard that we needed a story for the upcoming 50-issue milestone, I thought this was the perfect chance, so I wrote it up and threw it in the pot, and it got picked!

    TIQ: What was the writing process like for this issue? With this issue being a big milestone for the book, were their any big differences between this and writing a non milestone issue of the comic?

    TA: With a multi-issue story, there's always a question of where you put the issue breaks in the story: at what point do you split the story? Generally, you go for cliffhanger moments, with the greatest possible tension, and I already knew those moments going in. So it was a matter of filling the story around those moments. But I generally write out the structure of my issues first and then write based on that, so the only difference between writing a three-issue story and a one-issue is scale, really. It was a challenge, but a fun challenge!

    TIQ: You've worked with a lot of different artists while writing for the comic. What are some of the big differences that stand out now working with Andy Price when compared to working with—off the top of my head in no particular order—Brenda Hickey, Tony Fleecs, Agnes Garbowska, or Jay Fosgitt?

    TA: First off, I am so thankful I got to work with Andy on this issue—his art is basically the face of the MY LITTLE PONY comics, and he's put such a distinctive stamp on the series. (Plus he's also the last of the regular artists who I hadn't worked with). Knowing how much he loves improvising and putting in jokes everywhere possible, I tried to leave him plenty of space: there were several panels where my description included the phrase "go nuts"! It's always interesting to work with different artists and see how they interpret a script; I like to think that I've gotten a pretty good handle on how everybody works and what they like to see.

    TIQ: Is there any moment in the arc that you're the most proud of writing? Or a moment that you wrote that turned out much better than you imagined?

    TA: There are some moments with Starlight Glimmer in issue 50 that I'm particularly proud of. She's been a fun presence in this story, and a really good counterpart to Discord/Accord, as another reformed villain with an outsider's perspective on friendship. She also played a role in my recent Election story, but here she gets to be front and center for an important part of the story. I like the focus she's gotten in the recent season and some of the recent comics; I think she's a fun addition to the core cast, and I wanted to add a bit to her character.

    TIQ: A comic milestone issue is a good place to take a moment and look back upon ones contributions to the series. Looking back at your own work, what has been the comic you've been the most proud of working on?

    TA: That's a good question, haha. Honestly, I still think my very best issue was my first, the Pinkie Pie micro-series issue, because it was so tightly focused and so specific to her character—and, of course, I got to work with the amazing Ben Bates. But I'm also really proud of the issue about Cherilee's sister Cherry Blossom; I didn't ever expect Hasbro to allow an issue about pro wrestling, but I got my opportunity and I took it! Plus, Jay Fosgitt really knocked it out of the park—I bought one of his original pages when I finally met him at New York Comic-Con. That was probably the most fun I've had with an issue. It was also great to write the Equestria Girls specials, just because those characters were so familiar, but still slightly different, and getting to play with that was a fun challenge.

    TIQ: I know there's a moment in the upcoming issue that you're looking forward to seeing the reader's reactions to. What can you can tell us about that moment?

    TA: If it's the moment I'm thinking of ... yeah, I hope I'm subverting some expectations, haha. Magic doesn't always work like magic, and there's a more powerful kind of magic that's been in the series since the beginning!

    TIQ: Is there anything you'd like to say to the readers of Equestria Daily?

    TA: Here's to another fifty issues and more!

    My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #50 will be available on February 1st, 2017.

    My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #50—GEM OF THE MONTH
    Ted Anderson (w) • Andy Price (a, mc, sc) • Sara Richard (ric) • Heather Breckel (c) • Jeremy Whitley (w) • Jay Fosgitt (a)

    "Chaos Theory" Part 3 (of 3). Discord's new form threatens to take over all of Equestria! When the Elements of Harmony prove ineffective, the final gambit rests in Starlight Glimmer's hoofs!

    FC • 40 pages • $5.99

    Bullet points:
    • The landmark 50th issue of My Little Pony!
    • Part of IDW’s Artist’s Edition Cover Month!