• Pony Community Soapbox #119 - Princess Cozy Glow, Time in Equestria, BATs theory, 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.

    Headlines this week: 

    • Shadow Play got Friendship Gamed
    • Bats - A Scientific Theory
    • Princess Cozy Glow
    • A Lesson from “What Lies Beneath”: Advantage and Encouragement Don’t Mix 
    •  Passage of Time in Equestria

    And get your soapboxes below!

    Shadow Play got Friendship Gamed
    By: MugetsuxASK

    It’s pretty common knowledge that “Friendship Games” was radically changed from Josh Haber’s original script at the behest of Hasbro to push Sci-Twi and to keep EqG and Fim separate. Higher meddling made the story and a song worse by cutting Sunset’s arc out, and I think this happened with S7 of FiM.

    I’ve always said Shadow Play would have been better if instead of Starlight, we had Celestia and, importantly, LUNA as key players. Luna hits all the beats Starlight did (magically adept, Twilight reformed villain, can believably read Starswirl’s handwriting) while also having a personal attachment to Starswirl and the villain (originally). Remove the pillars making the Elements and Stygian retcons, and you could have this big, deep retrospective story that has the Mane 6 and the princesses question their successes and mistakes when faced with these heroes, ending with them showing that it’s Friendship that makes them stronger, what saved Luna, what made Twilight ascend. Follows up on Legends of Magic #1 and calls back to not only Josh Haber’s first episode, but the first episode period.

    Like it works so well I’d put money on this being the original vision. Heck, explains “A Royal Problem” too. Probably was an episode meant to re-establish Twilight and Luna’s bond, forcing Twilight to side with either her friend or her mentor, resulting in her fearing the rise of Nightmare Moon or Daybreaker. But that got scrapped because Starlight, and introduced Twilight's formerly non-existent "hero worship". Heck, don’t even need to change the plot, just have them swap like in the comics or exchange magic like in "Twilight's Kingdom".

    Tl;Dr: Haber got Larsoned. Again.

    Bats - A Scientific Theory
    By: Winter Shade

    So, you probably all heard of batponies. They were first introduced in episode "Luna Eclipsed", but made their major apperance in episode "Bats!" when Fluttershy turned into Flutterbat. Bats were also used in comics and are very popular species for OCs.

    But, why bats? I belive there is an scientific explanation for that. You see, when Fluttershy turned into batpony we can say she transmutated. While in real life transmutation doesn't work because of the immune system response (like with transplanted organs), there is a theoretical exception. You are right - bats (like e.g. "Desmodus rotundus).

    Bats have a unique immune system which allows them to carry hundreds of diseases without being infected and among other thing makes them perfect candidate for genetic hybridization. That immune system makes it possible for a creature (in our case batpony) to live without rejecting its various (additional) parts and dying.

    Princess Cozy Glow
    By: indiana

    Cozy has no background so I thought it would be fun to create one. Don't worry about spoilers. I am just throwing wild guesses out there. First of all she called herself Empress. Second, she has curly hair like crystal ponies. What if Cozy glow is a princess because her dad is actually King Sombra? When the Crystal empire showed up again, she returned with it but never showed up because she was still too small. She resented the fact that she was not born as an alicorn but in return she was gifted with incredibly high wits and intelligence for her age. She also had a magic mirror that could see far away events. As the events from seasons 3-8 unfolded, she saw that there was still a way for her to become an alicorn. Then she saw Tirek fighting Twilight and she got even more jealous of that power. Then she saw Starlight being able to manipulate crowds and learned that art for herself. Then she saw that there are many artifacts that can replace a horn's magic. Some items could use magic directly(Starlight's time scroll, The crystal heart) while others could negate it(Chrysalis's throne) and others could even gather it(the season 8 artifacts). After working out all of the details of her plan she decided to move to Twilight's school and take over in her father's absence.

    A Lesson from “What Lies Beneath”: Advantage and Encouragement Don’t Mix
    By: EnergeticRider

    While the most prominent lesson in WLB was about self-confidence and collaboration, it had other messages as well. One of them is about how detrimental was Cozy Glow’s seemingly innocent and concerned speech.

    You can easily see how after she called non-ponies “disadvantaged”, their spirit and eagerness to study (that already were low) fell. Simple psychology – if you’re persuaded that the task before you is not just incredibly hard, but also hard personally for you, while for someone else it’s a piece of cake, you are more likely to turn away. After all, if others have the easy way, why you should struggle, especially if you will never achieve results as high too?

    But interestingly enough, that speech didn’t do good for Sandbar either. He already had a fear of failure, but now that failure would be felt even greater. As he supposed to have “advantage” and after THAT still failed. And if he would pass? Payoff also would diminish, since for everyone he passed simply BECAUSE he had “advantage”. So with success not bringing satisfaction and failure being especially hurtful, it wouldn’t take long for him to be discouraged from friendship studies too.

    And, of course, the whole advantage/disadvantage division brought a rift between Sandbar and other students. In fact, I thought that Sandbar’s test would involve him confronting others, who would claim him to be obliged to tutor them even at his expense. Writers didn’t take that road though, either not to "trigger" certain people, or because they couldn’t figure out how to resolve such a conflict.

    Passage of Time in Equestria
    by: Auren Dawnstar

    Thinking about it, season 8 may be the quickest passage of time in Equestria covered by the show so far, and probably the least eventful on a daily basis for our little ponies.

    The first three seasons themselves covered roughly a year time span combined. Making that thousandth year extremely eventful. Season 4 takes place in roughly half a year afterwards in order for season 5's Tanks for the Memories to properly tie in with season 2's May the Best Pet Win. With season 5 itself taking place over roughly a year and a half with two winter episodes in total. Granted shuffled around they could take place in the same winter season cutting season 5 to half a year. Then there's the time skip over Cadence's pregnancy afterwards and, with the direct tie in and the lack of holiday episode in the latter, seasons 6 and 7 likely cover about a year in total.

    Then we get to season 8 which not only has at least some kind of time skip beforehand to build the school, but nine months pass before even the mid-season comes along, there's a hearth's warming episode right in the middle, and now a hearth's warming special following the season. Which means season 8 covers at least a two year time span on its own, and spreads out all of the events that happen therein over a longer time span compared to other seasons.

    This would also mean that roughly 5 or 6 years have passed in Equestria since the show's start over the course of the show's current 8 seasons.