• Pony Community Soapbox #114 - Smolder and Spike Romance, Cutie Map Hindering Episodes, And More!

    Community soapbox time, where opinions from around the fandom are dropped down below for you all to discuss and debate! Expect these posts normally when not late every Tuesday at 2:00 PM MST. To submit your own, see this post.

    • Are there multiple Trees of Harmony?
    • Smolder becoming Spike's official girlfriend
    • Clothes make the Equestria Girl
    • Student Six: Characters Or Gimmick?

    And get your soapboxes below!

    Are there multiple Trees of Harmony?
    By: Nightmare Muffin

    Could it be that the ToH that we know had a predecessor? In “Shadow Play”, Starswirl mentioned that the pillars planted a seed that the thousands year old tree grew from. However, where did THOSE seeds originally come from, if not another tree of harmony? Perhaps the “tree/ seed of harmony” might not have been what it was called back in the day of the pillars, but it would still be another tree that functioned with the same purpose.

    Smolder becoming Spike's official girlfriend
    By: MegaSean45

    Remember that theory I made about Spike and Smolder being long-lost siblings? It's going in the recycling bin. Yes, recycling... it's better for the environment. Now I got a new theory about Smolder possibly being Spike's future gf! I know what you're thinking, "But Big Jim said they're trying not to give the Mane 6 relationships!" well, Spike ain't Mane 6 now, is he? ;) Now if he said 'Mane 7', that'd be different.

    If you actually think about all the times Spike and Smolder have bonded with eachother which really developed their friendship over the season, it's a recurring thing, and it might lead to something! Yunno what that would lead to? The long overdo end of Spike's crush on Rarity! Spike can't just end the crush right there and then - no one can really end something right away that they've been addicted to for so long; he needs to replace it with something better!

    Smolder is a really good choice for Spike because she's full package: dragon, almost the same age, developmental bondings, similar personality, they really relate, and best of all: she never took advantage of him! Outta all of what Spike put up with in Rarity, he deserves a great gal like Smolder! Big Jim made answered a tweet about "Spike and Smolder's relationship" and he said "I guess you'll have to find out"! At first I thought that meant they're related, but I might have misunderstood what he meant! ;)

    The Cutie Map Now Hinders Otherwise Good Episodes
    By: Pegapnea

    I've never really been a fan of the map, but at first it was just because of it being a simple plot device. As the show has continued using the map though, it's really become more of a hindrance than it originally helped. Each new episode that uses the map to start it out begins with "Hey, you ponies are going here because map says so," after which they go to the setting for the episode. Once they get there, the script just reeks of meta as the main characters literally ask, "WHAT IS THE FRIENDSHIP PROBLEM," which is just extremely lazy at a writing standpoint, as well as now stale and void of any shred of meta humor it once had. This repeatedly used structure also takes about a fourth of the episode, leading to, more often than not, rushed problem solving and stunted development for the characters and setting.

    Clothes make the Equestria Girl
    By Moonlit Stones

    Every time I watch the pre-digital design reboot of My Little Pony: Equestria Girls, I see a lot of changes in the main character's wardrobes, and I like them a lot more than before said changes.

    The old designs were good too, but I had a few things I didn't like about them. For example, I really didn't like the knee-high boots that our heroes (and most other EQG characters) wore even though they supposed to look like horse hooves. I don't think it's anyone's fault, since they started the series in 2013. In five years they have gotten better with the designs, starting from DJ Pon-3 wearing high top sneakers in the short film "Music to My Ears, to Sunset Shimmer's post Rainbow Rocks outfit. Even clothes from other characters like the Crystal Prep students' uniforms are better designs than earlier.

    Laura Schuffman's designs really do a lot for the show. It really makes our heroes pop out more, and the upgrades to other character's outfits, like Trixie's new boots and matching knee-high socks, or Micro Chips' sneakers help a lot, too.

    New clothes do make the show stand out better, and I like that.

    Student Six: Characters Or Gimmick?
    by saturdaymorningproj

    I must admit that with well over the half of season 8 behind us I'm still not sold on the idea and execution behind the Student Six.
    On the one hand new characters present new possibilities for stories, however the way the students are written, they don't really feel like
    full-fledged characters. I have two gripes with them: One, they are written in "safe" manner. While Mane 6 are six fun ways how you can write female character,
    Student Six feel stereotypical by comparison (Ocellus being shy nerd, Sandbar being chilled out dude and so on).
    My second gripe is that they never seem to be facing problems caused by themselves (with the exception of "Heart's Warming Club"),
    unlike Mane 6 as each of the girls faced various problems, big and small, whether in group or alone. Because of that Student Six hardly seem like learning anything,
    especially from their own misadventures. They feel "sterile" as characters,
    while the old cast still keeps learning from their own mistakes ( something that apparently rubs some fans the wrong way).
    All this results in Student Six feeling more like this season's gimmick rather than extension of the cast.