I love the How to Train Your Dragon Movie and TV-franchise.
HTTYD2 and DotDR spoilers!
Like everyone, the first movie hit me as a huge surprise. I didn’t expect it to be that good. And after the gorgeous movie, came a really well made TV series, that strechted out over 3 season so far, the 4rth one in the making. And I’ve also seen the specials, too. The one thing I haven’t touched, are the books. However, I’ve heared the Movie/TV-franchise doesn’t really follow it either way, so I don’t feel like I’m missing a huge part of the picture, because it’s more like there’re two differenet pictures to begin with.
Obviously, I’ve seen the “Dawn of the Dragon Racers” short, that was released alongside the HTTYD2 DVD/BluRay release. It was nice to know how they came to invent Dragon Racing with the rules we’ve seen in the movie, but there was one detail that really bugged me. A very major detail. Simply speaking, the skill of the riders didn’t match up, especially Hiccup. I thought it was a bit strange everyone seemed to be very balanced out, even though they all have the strong and weak points. Of course, it’s all about what you make with them, but here’s my thought:
Fishlegs is smart, but very slow. The twins are… the twins, basically as dumb as bread and hardly ever follow any rules correctly. Snotlout has a very capable dragon, but a weird relationship with ihm, he’s too focussed on himself to properly work for a team most of the time and not the lighest bulb in the kitchen either. So much about those. Then there’s Astrid, I’d say of average intelligence, very fired up, has a good sense of battle, a very capable fighter and rider with a considerable fast and spiky dragon. Lastly, you have Hiccup, who’s smart, training them all, riding the fastest dragon of them all, has been riding his dragon for the longest and has the best relationship to him.
Personally… I think Hiccup should be way above the other riders and easily win the Dragon Races, which is probably because he seemed to have no desire to participate in any of the shown races in the movie. He would rather go exploring or help his townspeople rebuilding houses. The only time he participated in a race, it seemed to be of the sole reason to mess with Astrid, because she would have gotten the black sheep and won the race by herself, if Hiccup didn’t snatch the sheep away from her and put it into her basket letting her win. In other words, the one time he joined, he totally owned the rest of them and easily could have won, if he didn’t let Astrid win on purpose.
It just really bugged me Hiccup seemed to be of the same skill, when he’s clearly the most advanced of them all on the fastest and best to maneuver dragon, which gives him a huge advantage – this is a race after all. And it’s not like he looked like he was holding back in the short. It’s great to see the others advancing as well, but I just felt they took a bit too much from Hiccup in order to make this entire thing more fair/exciting/equal, especially after seeing the movie, where he was pointed out very clearly as the most capable of the dragon riders.
And I’m already totally overlooking they made Meatlog as fast as the other dragons in the short at the start of the first race held by Stoick.
All in all, it was a nice short, but I see it more as information rather than entertainment, because the level of skill of the dragon riders just really doesn’t match up. I’mk sorry, I kind of enjoyed it, but that’s all there is to it for me.