Welcome to another Pony Spotlight, where I examine one of the hundreds of characters from My Little Pony, and highlight random facts, trivia, and personality quirks that might get overlooked by the casual viewer. My name is TheSlorg, and I'll be your host.
Today's pony needs no introduction, but she's getting one anyway. She's the pony with two names, both of which were given to her by fans, and both officially adopted by Hasbro. She's a party animal on par with Pinkie Pie, she's a celebrity in her own right, and she really doesn't have much to say. At all.
It's time to Spotlight the one and only DJ Pon3! Head below the break to read more.
Aliases: Vinyl Scratch
Cutie Mark: Musical Note
First Appearance: Suited for Success
Speaking Roles: 0
Random Fact: An official trading card from Enterplay states that DJ Pon3 is just a stage name. Her real name is Vinyl Scratch.
It began with six seconds of screen time. In the season one episode, Suited for Success, DJ Pon3 was hired by Rarity to provide the music for the fashion show she put on to impress Hoity Toity. In those six seconds, the DJ, hereafter referred to as her real name Vinyl, used her magic to put on a vinyl record and bobbed her head for a few seconds.
That was all it took.
The fandom latched onto her immediately. Never before had such a unique pony been displayed on our television screens.That color scheme, those shades... and people really liked her mane. Fanfiction was created almost overnight, and a pony with a mere six seconds of screen time suddenly became a red-eyed, hard-partying celebrity who lived with Octavia as best friends. Oh, the crazy things the fandom likes to come up with. Why would Vinyl Scratch live with Octavia? It doesn't even make sen– oh COME ON!
Yes, as time passed, most of these fan-created ideas would be implemented into the show. The first big reveal was in the season two finale, A Canterlot Wedding part 2. Yep, she disappeared for 36 episodes before coming back just in time to provide music for Cadance and Shining Armor's wedding. It was here that she briefly lifted those shades to reveal brilliant magenta eyes. That's almost like red eyes! It was close enough, and the fandom exploded again.
While storylines from the comics often don't get covered in these Spotlights, it should be noted that in Friendship is Magic #11, Vinyl is shown to have received her cutie mark as a filly when she watched a teen Shining Armor perform some music to impress Cadance.
|Works hard, plays hard. The life of a DJ.|
Vinyl disappeared once again until the season three finale, Magical Mystery Cure, where she briefly showed up looking quite confused at Fluttershy's attempts at humor. She has a brief cameo in season four's Simple Ways, standing next to the Mane Six as Mayor Mare announces the Pony of Ceremonies. She also shows up in Testing, Testing, 1, 2, 3 when Pinkie Pie raps the history of the Wonderbolts, and again in Inspiration Manifestation when she is shown to have a stall at the Ponyville Foal and Filly Fair.
Unfortunately, none of those appearances really show any personality beyond the obvious love of music. All they really do is reinforce the fact that she is a popular DJ for hire.
The lack of growth would change in seasons five and six, however. Let's take a look!
|If the glasses are off, she means business.|
Vinyl's first appearance in season five was in Bloom and Gloom during Sweetie Belle's nightmare about a poor stage performance, where her microphone suddenly becomes a broom. Vinyl, one of the judges for Sweetie's performance, grimaces and scores her a zero. Of note here is that this was the first time Vinyl had actually been seen next to Octavia, who was also a judge. This normally wouldn't have meant anything, since all of it took place in Sweetie Belle's mind, but the infamous episode 100 would change everything.
Yes, episode 100, Slice of Life, brought life and personality to many background ponies, Vinyl included!
She first shows up when Doctor Hooves is looking for Rarity so that he may have his wedding suit tailored. He stops Vinyl and tries to explain what he needs, but she is wearing headphones with the volume up full blast, and she can't hear him. She just assumes, based on his arm movements, that he wants to go bowling, and happily leads him to the bowling alley.
Later, it is revealed that Vinyl and Octavia are roommates in a house that is literally divided right down the middle, with Vinyls side being more rock and hip hop oriented, while Octavia's is decorated more classically. After drinking some milk straight from the bottle, Vinyl decides to assist with Octavia's wedding music, which eventually leads to a duet played on a mobile turntable complete with speaker setup that picks up most of the wedding guests and somehow drops them all off just in time for the wedding to get started.
There are a few things to note here. One is the fact that many were hoping Vinyl would speak in this episode, and she didn't. This is the first episode where she is shown using hoof gestures to communicate as opposed to speaking. Yes, for anyone who missed it, Mitch Larson, the writer for Slice of Life, stated in an EQD exclusive interview that the script originally had speaking lines for Vinyl, but Hasbro cut them and insisted she remain mute. That's right, it's official: Vinyl Scratch is the first confirmed mute pony. Either that, or she's just rude. Or perhaps a banshee. Yes, that's it. Vinyl Scratch is first confirmed banshee pony. I don't have a resource for that one, you'll just have to trust me. Mr. Larson also went on to state that Vinyl and Octavia weren't originally roommates, either, but Hasbro asked him to make the change for the fans.
This opens up an entirely new side to Vinyl's personality that we otherwise wouldn't have noticed. Vinyl has no way to speak and express herself verbally, so she has turned to music as a way of expression. The simple fact that she is, indeed, mute adds an entirely new layer to her personality. From episode 100 onward, her appearances have included subtle non-verbal gestures as a means of communication from her.
In season six's No Second Prances, Vinyl decides to accompany Twilight to meet Starlight Glimmer. As she is still wearing headphones that are blasting music, it is very likely she has no idea why she's there, and this is further strengthened when Twilight asks her a question and she simply turns around and walks away. She later attends a dinner with Twilight and Princess Celestia, still wearing headphones, and still likely oblivious.
In A Hearth's Warming Tail, Vinyl teams up with Octavia to provide music on a gramophone, though this is only happening in Twilight Sparkle's head as she reads the book, A Hearth's Warming Tail (sic).
In The Saddle Row Review, Vinyl is shown to own a dance club in Manehattan that happens to be directly above Rarity's new shop, Rarity For You. She later accepts Pinkie Pie's offer to perform for the boutique, effectively making Vinyl one of Rarity's employees, if only part-time. She seems to be popping up more often this season, so let's see where this leads!
Vinyl Scratch Fanfics
The Vinyl Scratch Tapes
Vinyl and Octavia: University Days
Thunder and Lightning
My Roommate is a Vampire
Fun With Changelings
More Vinyl Scratch Fanfics!