• Community Soapbox - The Calm Before the Storm

    As I mentioned last week, the Community Soapbox planned to take a break while we waited for more show content to come. A lot of people sent emails in saying they hoped it wouldn't be retired, so I think we might go a different route going forward.

    You can still send in soapboxes, but they will no longer be on Tuesday. They will instead go up whenever we get enough reasonably good ones.

    We are also upping the word count to 500 rather than 200, so feel free to write a little longer. If you would like to submit a soapbox, hit this post up for the details!

    Since this is sort of a special edition finale to the old way of doing things, we opened up and allowed anyone to submit anything in an unlimited number. This has given us around 20 for you all to peruse today.

    As always, Soapboxes are not our opinions at EQD, and are entirely on the writer. If you disagree with them, feel free to drop it in the comments. The whole point is to let people vocalize pony related things, regardless of what we thought of them.

    Going forward after this, we will most likely institute a bit of extra quality control and delete the overly trolly/controversial ones. While not banning politics overall, you do need to keep it pony.

    Anyway, get your soapboxes below!

    Appreciate the Artists: What a CHONKER EDITION


    A lot of the Artists get mistreated either by people emailing us about their detailed highly involved project and demand to do it for free, Conventions/Commissioners not knowing how artists work or should be treated/valued,

    Just now at the end of the show, we are starting to get more storyboard artists and more artist involvement in conventions.I love having fan animators and Comic Artists don't get me wrong I love the work they do it's nice to finally see more artists.

    How to support your fellow artists


    If an artist is an undercharging ex: $10 for a full character, Give them support and tip them to an avg pricing for the artwork. Art is a Luxury it shouldn't be priced as same as a water bottle or fastfood meal.

    If they are not undercharging but you really like it, we do take tips it honestly is so nice and we are extremely thankful that our services were perfect for ya!

    Being Patient for your piece, life happens or just a lot is going on if its a day after you sent an inquiry just sit back and relax. I'm sure the artist will give you updates about what's going on in their lives that are preventing them from doing the work (funeral,school, etc). Unless it's like an absurd amount of time then its time to consider getting a refund. I'm honestly so thankful for my commissioners being patient and they are just really understanding that honestly brings a smile to any artist's face.

    Like/Retweet/Reblog/Share the art!

    It shows that you really enjoyed it and it makes us smile seeing even one thing. Don't be afraid to like or retweet stuff it gets us all giddy that someone likes anything that we draw. Thank you to those who have properly shared other people's art, it got some of us our careers and freelance gigs we can't thank you enough for being apart of making that happen!

    Not so good stuff

    DON'T ask/beg/guilt-trip for Free art, a lot of artists are young but also a lot of us would rather delete the comment/dms. Imagine talking to someone face to face, and to think about how to approach it. If you don't have funds now its a nice goal to save up change/spare cash if that's what you would like to use it for.

    "Prices Too HIGH"

    Don't say "your prices are too high" Art is a luxury combined with time it takes to make a piece and also the years of work and skill a lot of artists in the MLP community tend to underprice their work so please respect the artist's pricing this may be their only source of income!


    If the Artwork is a gift/nearly free/volunteer please don't be demanding about it

    a lot of artists face people trying to turn a nice volunteer gesture into a contest of how to shove so many details into a free artwork as they can. This is sadly too common in some of the places i staffed, Artwork professionally is easy $100-$300 dollars.When an Artist does something from their heart and possibly limited free time just be thankful that they are doing this kind act It's not easy finding time to do personal work, by being rude/demanding to fanart of your characters that is done for low price or free It can be very disheartening to the artist. And cause them to not really want to do this stuff anymore. Conventions get $$$$+ worth of artwork easy, for some booth spots in the vendor hall please do respect the work that they do for you and also respect musicians and mascot actors as those are too luxury things (especially mascots !!)


    I've seen art being stolen/Reposted without the artist's permission honestly this is a pain in the side. Watermarks are put on due to art theft not a reason for non-artists to refuse to credit. If you are planning on making a comic dub,or a video featuring someone's artwork PLEASE ASK THEM! Some artists would not like their art in videos or if you are being PAID for the video ask the artist on what their terms are. Every Artist is different so please ask. You usually just link to the artist's page to the specific piece or the artist's page. (it helps us a lot thank you for those who source back!

    The odd buildup of Canterlot

    Minty Root

    Season one of My Little Pony is an odd season just like most TV shows trying to set their tone and feel, the magic glow on objects didn't match in color and look to the horn, Applejack and Rainbow Dash sounded a little too similar and the animation looked a little weird when compared to later seasons. That's not out of the ordinary, that's simply early installment weirdness.

    One detailed that is overlooked however is that the first true look at Canterlot is seen only during the season finale. While the first episode shows some towers and fields in the grand city, you never really get to see a true look at the city at that moment. One reason we overlook that lack of wide view of Canterlot in that episode is that the opening theme of the show fills that gap nicely in our brain.

    Considering the finale of the season was supposed to be The Return of Harmony and instead was The Best Night Ever, it feels a little weird to end a season of a show in a location you never really saw during the duration of the show at the time.

    We hear the ponies talk about Canterlot a lot, but no episode gets to explicitly visit the city before that, and it wasn't a lack of budget either, season one shows Cloudsdale in Sonic Rainboom, Appleloosa in Over a Barrel, and some random mountains in Dragonshy. The only views of Canterlot appear in The Ticket Master when the ponies imagine what The Grand Galloping Gala looks like (And for some reason they think it happens during the day), and you see Twilight's flashback of how she got her cutie mark in The Cutie Mark Chronicles, but even in the flashback you can't make out much of it.

    In result, the first view of Canterlot in The Best Night Ever feels genuine and grand, you get to truly see Canterlot for the first time along with the rest of the mane 6, but you also feel a sense of familiarity with it just like Twilight.

    Was it a genius move of Lauren, or just the way things turned out? Most of the staff thought it would run for only a season, so designing Canterlot in such detail but only showing it for one episode and some crumbles feels rather odd.

    Anyway, that was stuck in my mind for a while. I always get an emotional feel whenever I listen to At The Gala and I feel finding out Canterlot for the first time along with that song might be the reason why.

    Is Equestria Flat?

    By: Raincloudboom

    The world on which Equestria resides is very different to our world in a number of significant ways. The sentient creatures of the world must manually control nearly every aspect of the natural world. Weather is manually created and manipulated by pegasi and unicorns, seasons are changed by hoof (and wing and horn), and even the Sun and Moon are manually raised and lowered to begin and end the day and night. It is this last point which has the most interesting implications for the shape of the world. It seems to make much more sense that such manual control of the celestial bodies would take place from a flat planet rather than a round one.

    First things first, let’s address the evidence from the show that would serve to dispute this claim. In Season 2 Episode 10 Secret of My Excess, Spike takes a round spherical globe to be a part of his hoard. In S2 E11 Hearth’s Warming Eve, Pinkie Pie, playing the role of Chancellor Pudding head says “I got a newsflash for you, Cookie. The Earth is round. There is no up or down”. Seems pretty definitive. Case closed, the world is round, it’s stated right there. But for argument’s sake, lets examine the rest of the evidence, beginning with the Sun and Moon.

    The sun sits at the center of our solar system approximately 92 million miles away, it’s about 333,000 times more massive than our planet, and about 1.3 million times the Earth’s size. The Earth along with seven other planets, and countless other smaller bodies orbit the sun in heliocentric elliptical orbits, and the 24 hour axial rotation gives rise to our day/night cycle. Equestria however is very different. Princess Celestia for a millennium controlled both the sun and moon manually from her castle in Canterlot. Before and after this period, her sister Princess Luna shared some of this burden controlling the moon and watching over the night, and most recently Princess Twilight Sparkle assumed control over both heavenly bodies. Equestria’s Solar system is geocentric, with both the moon and the sun centered around the planet. Usually the sun rises in the morning and sets in the evening, the moon rises in the evening once the sun sets, and sets in the morning as the other rises. However when the sisters are not the ones in control, the sun and moon can be made to behave quite erratically. In S2 E2 The Return of Harmony, Discord takes over Equestria, and causes day and night to rapidly shift back and forth. In S4 E1 Princess Twilight Sparkle, both the sun and the moon appear in the sky causing both day and night to occur simultaneously. In S4 E26 Twilight’s Kingdom, Twilight shakily raises the sun late, and in My Little Pony the Movie, the Storm king uses the Staff of Sacanas to fling the sun and moon across the sky rapidly and at will. All these events seem to imply that the sun of Equestria is fairly small, in my estimation likely a few dozen to a few hundred miles in diameter at the most, is relatively close by, likely no more than a few hundred to a few thousand miles from the surface, and has little to no gravitational effect on Equestria’s planet (else the tidal forces from such rapid movement would likely tear the planet asunder).

    The sun and moon seem to be similar in size and distance, with the moon slightly closer so that a solar eclipse is still possible. The Moon is also inextricably tied to the night sky, such that when it appears, so too do dark skies and stars, regardless of the position of the sun. The comics have an issue where Luna literally throws a lasso around the moon and pulls it down so that the Mane 6 can walk up to it. This shows an idea of the size of the moon that we are dealing with, as well as its fairly close proximity to the planet.

    The image that best fits this evidence, from my estimation, is a flat circular disc of a planet, with a domed sky that forms a hemisphere around it. The sun and moon would be toward the outermost part of the sky, and might either be large physical orbs floating in the sky pushed along by magic, or possibly be flat circular discs themselves, attached to the sky that can be shifted around the domed sky magically and give off light and heat for all those in the world. This would also be able to explain the night being linked to the moon, as whatever part of the sky the moon was in could be magically tuned to show darkness and stars. It could be that the ponies believe their world to be round, and indeed, I believe the writers originally intended for the world to be round, but may not have thought through the ramifications of what that would mean to the world. Perhaps Puddinghead merely meant the world was circular though flat, rather than spherical when she proclaimed the Earth to be round. Who can say for sure?

    The problem with Equestria being spherical in my view is the evidence that the sun and moon are not in a consistent geocentric orbit. If the sun will not rise unless it is called forth by an alicorn, it could not be in a consistent orbit. So that begets the question, if the world is round, then what of the other hemisphere? Would the bodies stay motionless in the sky until it was time to rise on Equestria? Would they meander aimlessly? Would another being of great power guide them across to the opposite horizon, and if so how would such a being react to the chaos of others taking control? If the world was round, could creatures adapt to live on the side that was not celestially maintained? Let me know what you think.

    Why Sweet Shutter is the best pony

    By: Jim Glanville

    She has the perfect name, a beautiful pink mane, beautiful purple eyes, amazing cutie mark. She is originally StormXF3’s OC. I just love her so much. I wish she was in the MLP show. Her pony friend is Brightfull Flux (Only Me Equestrian’s OC). Sweet is 35 and Brightfull is 30. Sweet is a photograph pegasus pony. She sometimes wears a camera on her neck to take photos, like example, nature. She is married to Jim Glanville who have kissed each other. She doesn’t talk much for some reason. She can also sing, video record, draw. She is a famous celebrity in Equestria. She haves share all her love to Jim Glanville. She spends some time with Brightfull Flux, who both share their friendship together. Sweet hugs both Jim Glanville and Brightfull Flux. StormXF3 haven’t made a video of Sweet Shutter, and I really want him to make one. Sometimes I ask him when, and sometimes he doesn’t reply back. I have made a lot of drawings of Sweet Shutter. I used to have a lot of fun on those. That’s why I say Sweet Shutter is the best pony. I wish I could add more words, but that’s all I could say.

    Calling for a Fan-Made Continuation of Friendship is Magic

    By: nopony

    So the show ended. And what we're gonna do now? I have an idea!

    This fandom has many talented people. We have animators who are capable of creating show quality videos, as well as great writers, musicians, voice actors and so on. So why don't we make at least a few extra episodes ourselves? This is a chance to do some things we've been always dreaming of, but they never actually happened in the nine seasons that we got.

    So let's gather all the best people for this job among those that are still a part of this community. In case it needs money to happen, it can be financed by crowdfunding. And perhaps there should be some polls, to let the people decide about things like which episode ideas are best.

    The only serious problem I can see are copyright issues and possible C&D, so I suppose it should be based on some sort of agreement with Hasbro, and we should accept any limitations that they would impose on such project. And there should be a disclaimer that it's unofficial, not endorsed by Hasbro etc. I think they should accept such idea, as I can't see what they could lose because of it. Especially if it's non-profit, and any funds gathered on bit would be only used to cover expenses. Although I don't know much about the legal stuff, so I welcome any suggestions about that in the comments.

    Perhaps a good time to make such series is after the end of the "Season 10" comics, so it can continue the storyline from there. The preparations can start earlier, but the decision about the stories that are going to be done should be made at that point. Let it be our "Season 11".

    So what do you think? Is it a totally crazy idea or actually doable?

    Why do I like My Little Pony

    By Charlie McEvoy

    Before I write anything, I just want to let you know that I'm autistic and I've been a big fan of My Little Pony for years.

    My favorite character from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is Starlight Glimmer and what I like most about her is she is kind, wonderful and sometimes she makes mistakes and she learns from them in the end.

    My favorite episodes of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is all of them, including the feature film, T.V specials and Equestria Girls films because every scene I've watched helps me understand to value of friendship and how much I wanted to be part of it.

    The Three Ages of Pony

    By: Loganberry

    Most people would agree that Season 1 of Friendship is Magic had quite a different flavour from Season 9 FiM. For some fan, the changes were too much to stomach, and they drifted away from the fandom – or at least the show itself – as a result. For others, like me, the changes have simply meant enjoying FiM in a different way. I think you can split the show's history into three unequal eras:

    1. Original Pony

    This consists of the first three seasons – which in some alternate reality might easily have ended up being all we got of FiM. I remember the S3/S4 hiatus, and it was only when S4 was officially confirmed that we knew for sure the party hadn't ended. In the Original Pony era, the show was strongly focused on the Mane Six, with occasional diversions with the CMC etc. The wider story was centred on Ponyville, and with a few exceptions such as season premieres and finales, episodes were usually domestic in tone. The writer roster was pretty stable, with only a few comings and goings.

    Although Lauren Faust has said that the MLP she originally planned could not have survived beyond "A Canterlot Wedding" – Cadance's introduction being a major reason – most S3 episodes could actually have been slotted into late S1 without too much difficulty. Apart from the finale, the most obvious exception is "Keep Calm and Flutter On". It's actually possible to argue that the beginning of the end of the Original Pony era is not Twilight's ascension but Discord's reformation.

    2. Transition Pony

    This was relatively short era, covering Seasons 4 and 5. Despite that, we saw a lot of changes during this period. The CMC got their cutie marks and Diamond Tiara was reformed. (And then forgotten, but oh well...) Starlight Glimmer made her debut, although the full significance of that would not become apparent until after the Transition Pony era was over. Twilight lost her comfortable, reassuring library home and had to start anew in the awkward, hard-edged castle. Many of the original writers disappeared: indeed, if you ignore "Fame and Misfortune", the *only* S1/S2 writer who continued after S5 was Dave Polsky, and even he didn't last long.

    Meanwhile, new writers came on board to replace them. We'd seen one newcomer (Corey Powell) in S3, but S4 and S5 saw a veritable flood of them. Natasha Levinger, Nick Confalone and Ed Valentine were among the more notable, though none was as significant as Josh Haber, who made his debut with "Castle Mane-ia". In retrospect, that episode was very significant, and not only because it saw the Journal of Friendship's introduction. It was also the first episode that would have felt entirely out of place in the Original Pony era, being something closer to "Scooby-Doo with ponies". Haber, of course, would go on to have huge influence on FiM.

    3. Late Pony

    From S6 onwards, we were in a whole new era. Apart from Dave Polsky who hung on into S6, all the original writers had gone. (I don't count "Fame and Misfortune" as a true M. A. Larson episode.) Not coincidentally, the show began to play increasingly fast and loose with continuity. By this point, we very rarely got a reminder that the ponies directly controlled a lot of Equestrian Nature. FiM had become less character-driven, something a bit closer to a "humans in pony suits" show, though at least the characters continued to show growth on screen until character regression problems truly set in somewhere around early S8.

    The show continued to impress technically, with the likes of "A Hearth's Warming Tail" (written by Michael Vogel, my pick as the best Late Pony writer) a sumptuous delight for the senses. On the downside, in-universe consistency was increasingly sacrificed to silly humour, meme faces and "cartoon logic" – the clearly nonsensical teaching arrangements at the School of Friendship being a case in point. And at least up until the final season, side characters increasingly took the spotlight away from the Mane Six. Some innovations worked (eg Starlight and Trixie), but others rather fell flat (eg the reformed changelings).


    Expecting FiM to continue in its S1 vein forever was never realistic. It would have become stale fairly quickly, and while some might argue that it would have been a better cartoon if it had indeed ended after 65 episodes, personally I would feel we would have lost too much. While pickings did become thinner later on, with clearly sub-standard episodes such as "Non-Compete Clause", there were still enough high points even in the Late Pony era that I'm glad we got the nine seasons we did. I can enjoy at least parts of all of them – just not in exactly the same way.s

    My issue with “Friendship University” and the season 9 two part finale.

    By Ben Del

    In Friendship University the lesson is literally not to forgive people. The lesson should have concluded with Twilight being proven wrong and genuinely admitting that she was holding onto a grudge. The flim flam brothers wronged her in the past and it makes sense why she wouldn’t trust them, but if she admitted this initial distrust and then was proven wrong it would have made for a very wholesome lesson about forgiveness. It also would have humbled twilight some.

    In the first half of the two part season finale it is revealed that Grogar was actually discord. I immediately was touched because I knew in my heart that discord was trying to teach the villains friendship by having them work together. But I was wrong. He was trying to boost Twilights confidence by having her defeat all the villains at once. I want to cuss. This feels sloppily written. Perhaps that WAS his actual intention and he only said what he said because he felt that the mane six wouldn’t approve but that seems beyond normal mlp writing. They would have at least hinted to it somewhere at the end of the episode.

    The Relationship Links Between Sunset Shimmer, Trixie Lulamoon and Starlight Glimmer

    I've been crafting soapboxes here for a month and what's always fascinated me is the possible relationship between another three main ponies that often slip under the radar. They are (as by the picture): Starlight Glimmer, Sunset Shimmer; and of course the all Great and Powerful Trixie!

    First off in EG: Mirror Magic: when Sunset returns to Ponyville via the mirror portal and all of a sudden comes across Starlight Glimmer. Starlight is really curious about the 'human' world that Shimmer had discovered and thus has developed a well coordinated bond with one another. Glimmer really gets into the predicaments that Sunset really faces for 'whatever is going to be thrown at us' albeit through the magical powers that Twilight gave them.

    Finally we come to Trixie, the one you've been waiting for! While they didn't get off to a great starting Forgotten Friendship, Trixie had helped Sunset get into more moralistic approaches about being more compassionate to her other friends. Like before, Trixie had befriended Starlight yet the rigid dichotomy is within the relationships that lie between. They almost often correlate to what we see in the pony world.

    But hey, I might work Lyra in next week.

    MLP works like a drug


    I know this sounds crazy already just from the title but please hear me out. Every person in our world has one or more things that makes them happy. For some it's hanging out with friends, for some it's family, for others it's love and for many it's something small and repetitive. There are things in this world that people do regularly. Why? Because they are addicted to them. Things like drinking, smoking, doing drugs, gaming, reading, or even watching ponies among many other things. You may protest that not all these are harmful because the latter ones are fine. I agree with that but that doesn't mean they can't have the same addiction element to them. For some people cigarettes are just something that they can't live without and for someone like me it's now MLP that I can't live without. Isn't this proof enough that it works like a drug? I think it is. There may be more than one thing that we get addicted to in life and as long as those things are not harmful, I would say go for it. I was lucky enough to always hate smoking, drinking and any kind of extasy pills or other more dangerous crap but I did one time take an overdose of 20 sleeping pills. The verdict: NEVER DO THAT! You will probably die. Because of that day I now know that MLP is the best and most healthy drug in existence for me at the moment. Do you agree?

    Also a very serious warning for everyone. If you did not start already, please don't start drinking, smoking or doing drugs. They are really not worth the pain and money especially compared to the myriad of other things you can get addicted to instead witch don't destroy your body and mind.

    MLP: FiM The Untapped Frontier

    By: Jade Muse

    - The Untapped Frontier -

    When I heard that EQD Soapboxes were ending, I was sad but understanding. A lot of people seem to feel that since the chapter has closed, the book has ended and thus there is nothing else to talk about. And although I won’t be around for the next two years (religious service) I hope to prove and show that there is so much left to explore in this chapter of our story and in the world of MLP itself. Allow me to share with you some incomplete snippets of what I have been working on regarding MLP, one from each of my three volumes of theory currently in progress; The notes of which have actually grabbed the attention of some people on Twitter, namely Joshscorcher for the analysis of equestrian creatures and TheBronyChef for a catalogue of the show’s cuisine. You may read over these notes if you’d like via the link at the end but do note that these are my early writings and do not represent the coming works. With regards, I am Jade Muse.

    Clothes in Equestrian Society from Expeditions Through Equestria

    This is only an idea. The full volume will encompass:

    Equestrian structures, a summary of creatures and their societies, and a catalogue of cuisine

    Clothes have often been debated by many, how at points ponies can wear nothing but then be ashamed upon entering during tasks such as a shower or getting dressed. We tend to view these moments in our society as disregard for cleanliness and privacy but for the equestrian society, that is of no concern as all are already covered in fur. Instead, the idea of clothes is one of implication and nuance, relating to one’s expression, privacy, or need. For example, having on garments such as a towel after showering implies privacy and thus creatures show shame for intruding on such. In those same settings, minus the garb, the underlying intention is gone and so is the impact of intrusion. If we think of clothes stemming from a pure practical application, we see that the equestrian society developed their understanding of clothes in a more nuanced perspective and their use of them eventually evolved and adapted to imply meaning or stylistic choice outside of practical use.

    Geo Systems from A Novel Study of Magic

    This is only an idea. The full volume will include:

    Expository writing on magic, spells and artifacts, equestrian science, and more

    Another debated topic is how Celestia and Luna are able to control the sun and moon without screwing up the stability of their solar system. My belief is as simple as this; It’s not a solar system. Early theories in our own world thought that the sun and the moon rotated around our planet until that theory was eventually debunked by other research. If we stem off that idea and instead view the Equestrian universe as a realm with rules that reflect but are not our own, then you have a situation where a geo system is possible. With the presence of magic in the world and under the idea that magic is a higher state, the “matter that makes up matter” in a sense, then we can form a sort of magical theory on gravity’s origin. Under the theory of core magic, the idea pertaining here that core magic maintains connections throughout an object and defines its capacity for magic usage, a mass of matter might be able to possess enough magic to exert a sort of magical gravity, attracting lesser magical objects toward it. This inherently implies that gravity in this realm is dependent on the amount of magic infused into matter and, as we have seen a simple spell create matter in seconds, one can assume that matter itself plays a marginal role in factoring the magical gravity an object possesses. We can then break up those objects into their various classifications of universal core magic, those being planetary, solar, and physical; Planetary having the capacity to attract solar, solar able to attract physical, et cetera. Under this idea of gravity, Equestria’s planet would be the most magical object in the system and thus able to attract solar and physical objects into its gravitational field, thereby creating the geo system.

    Hearth’s Warming is Not Christmas from Contemplating My Little Pony

    This is only an idea. The full volume will feature:

    An extensive theoretical timeline of the show and miscellaneous thoughts

    It’s like it but not in the way that you think. In the historic event that formed Hearth’s Warming, members of the three pony tribes became friends and banished the windigos through their fire of friendship, melting the cold snowstorm that had frozen their leaders in ice. The exact date has always been associated with Christmas in the fandom but looking at it never felt right. Christmas was originally celebrated on the Solstice on the Roman Calendar, the day was just deemed the 25th when Christmas merged with the Roman celebration of Saturnalia. When the calendar changed, the date was associated more with Christmas and thus stayed on the 25th. Take that into the Equestrian world and knowing that pegasi control the weather, it would make sense that they would continue to celebrate it on the Solstice as it is part of their history. Ponies gathering together in love and friendship before waking up on the coldest and darkest day of the year seems too metaphorical and perfect to be slumped onto a day that only exists because of the changing tides of human history. Even one making the Christmas parallel must still see the Solstice as the correct date as in an equine universe the events that moved Christmas to the 25th have not been mentioned in regards to Hearth’s Warming’s history. This would then place the date of Hearth’s Warming Eve on the 20th of December and Hearth’s Warming on the Winter Solstice aka the 21st.

    Missed Opportunity with The Storm King

    By Mariusioannesp

    The Art of My Little Pony The Movie reveals that one of the early concepts for The Storm King was as a wolf-like creature identified as a raiju, a being from Japanese mythology. It eventually evolved into the form we’re all familiar with when decided they wanted him to be more bipedal. When I first saw this early concept, I thought that it was a missed opportunity. For one thing, one of my favorite parts of My Little Pony is how they’ll utilize mythological creatures from cultures all over the world on the show. It would have also been a very unique look. The Storm King kind of ended up being too similar in both appearance and modus operandi to Tirek. Even a bipedal but still wolf-like design could have still worked as unique and interesting. Fans could have ended up giving him the fan name Raijin after the storm god from Japanese mythology. This is all that could have been if they had maintained that early design. We all lost an opportunity that would have been fun.

    Is Principal Cinch the Human Version of Prismia?

    By Mariusioannesp

    The other day I was thinking about one of the first My Little Pony chapter books Twilight Sparkle and the Crystal Heart Spell. In it, we get Princess Cadance’s origin story. She was a young pegasus who defeated a spell cast by a pony enchantress named Prismia and as a result became an alicorn. And eventually she became Princess of the Crystal Empire as we all came to see. Even though she was just mentioned briefly in a chapter book, sometimes I can’t help but wonder about this Prismia. Then something occurred to me. What if Principal Cinch from Equestria Girls is supposed to be the human counterpart of Prismia? This came to me based on the comment in Dance Magic that Principal Cinch was gone and now Cadance was the principal of Crystal Prep. In a way, this Prismia could be considered responsible for putting Cadance on the road to becoming Princess of the Crystal Empire. The human Cadance taking over for Cinch as principal of Crystal Prep could be the human world parallel to all that. Either way, that’s going to be my headcanon now.

    My Little Pony is Actually Not an Anti-Leftist Show

    By: Wootmaster

    I've decided to write this post after seeing (yet again) someone trying to cram My Little Pony into their own warped political worldview. This is a response to last weeks hilarious soapbox "FiM is NOT for Left-Wing Politics but AGAINST It"

    First of all the western left is incredibly liberal. You can't just say something is no longer left-wing or right-wing because you disagree with the direction its taken. Its incredibly naive to claim that the left denies people their liberty when American right-wingers restricted abortion in Alabama, denying women liberty over their own bodies. Of course the left doesn't like Nazis speaking at universities, so who can really say who's restricting who's liberty more?

    The crux of this articles argument is hinged upon assembling a strawman of leftist politics and then defeating said strawman by taking an extremely narrow view of certain episodes to support a vaguely libertarian viewpoint. But upon closer examination not one of these examples holds up.

    His first example is Hearth's Warming Eve, and it sets up a pattern of him conflating fantasy stories with real world politics that continues throughout the article. That's not to say that the stories aren't political, as all narratives are in some way political. But there's a difference in "being political" and saying "this is specifically about the history of oppression in America". The author paints unicorns as the "Master Race", using a term fetishized by Hitler, and then goes on to conflate the founding of Equestria to the real-world sociopolitical situation of America. Unfortunately this comparison makes no sense, as the unicorns didn't wipe out the indigenous population, import and enslave the earth ponies for 400 years to grow food for them, or segregate the Hayburger for "Horns Only". Drawing such similarities is not only a stretch, it diminishes the real-world oppression minorities face, which almost seems to be the authors point.

    The second example, It Ain't Easy Being Breezies, hinges on the author equivocating the plight of the Breezies with minorities or other disadvantaged groups in the real world (again) and how pandering to them is bad. This example completely ignores the latter half of the episode, where Twilight and crew transform themselves INTO Breezies to help them on their journey. The author posits that its better to actually help minorities than to pander to them, but ignores that the actual solution involves literally allying oneself with minorities and viewing things through their eyes, an ideology closer to the left's empathy than the right's "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" apathy. In order to reach his anti-leftist conclusion the author had to literally ignore an entire section of the episode.

    The next example is also similarly narrow-minded, offering a purposefully distorted view of The Cutie Map. He undermines his own point by correctly stating that the village Starlight runs doesn't resemble any sort of Marxist or Leninist government, but instead resembles a modern liberal social justice agenda. The problem is, it is the HEROES of the story who closer resemble modern liberal ideals, not Starlight. The ponies return color, creativity and individuality to the village, echoing the "be yourself" mantra found in mainly left-wing ideology, which runs the gamut from gender identity to artistic expression. The right's critique of the left even supports this, as a common insult is to call a leftist a "snowflake"-- and as we all know every snowflake is unique. This flies directly in the face of Starlight's ideology in the episode.

    The original author's views are so warped that he both gets AND misses the point. The episode's conclusion is not a critique of leftist ideals but rather a milquetoast, vaguely liberal "Be UNIQUE" moral, the kind even a child could understand. Most of the show's morals are like this. Of course bronies have turned purposefully misunderstanding the lessons from a children's cartoon into something of an artform (see: the average MLP episode reviewer)

    To Change a Changeling provides the strongest argument for the author's point, but still completely misses the mark. The dichotomy between Pharanyx and the hive does indeed resemble the split between liberals and conservatives. But the author suggests that the "inclusive" community forced Pharanyx out when the opposite is true. The changelings hid their feelings and talked behind Pharanyx's back. They made every effort to tolerate Pharanyx, even going so far as hiding their real opinions from him. He leaves once the truth comes out...nobody "silences" him. Not only does he return to then protect the community, the actual culprit behind Pharanyx leaving is revealed, and no, its not leftist SJWs. Its Trixie being a bonehead. Once more the show isn't anti-leftist...its balanced and overwhelmingly neutral.

    His next example is Marks and Recreation and to be quite frank its a mess. He starts this example off by making a wild assumption about the writer's motive, then immediately dismisses it. And while Rumble does indeed "rebel against oppressive norms" the point of the episode is that the norms themselves didn't exist in the first place. The author here REALLY reaches for some sort of modern SJW metaphor where none exists. If there's any hidden meaning to be gleaned from this episode its most likely that its a patch-job for the previous episode Appleloosa's Most Wanted, as the moral here of not being tied down to your cutie mark provides are more palatable view of destiny than that one did.

    His penultimate example is Sounds of Silence, which he proclaims advocates free speech, something supposedly incompatible with the "modern left". Neveermind that the modern right had such a problem with two gay people getting married in an episode of Arthur that they banned an entire episode from being aired in a particularly red state, our wonderful author ignores that Kirin's initial problem was caused by rampant "free speech" that caused them to burn their entire village down. In the end Autumn and the kirin learn to temper their anger and politely limit their speech to avoid explosive arguments. Autumn lets off her rage privately and then politely voices her disagreement. Civility is something pushed by BOTH sides of the political spectrum, from wine-sipping rich liberals tone-policing minorities to stuffed suit Republicans claiming the left is too violent. Again the show ultimately seeks out a centrist approach that satisfies both the left AND right.

    As the last example School Raze is where the author's arguments lose their last vestiges of logic and abscond into pure fantasy. Season 8 was dominated by messages of inclusion, diversity, and anti-racism. The only way it would have been more obvious is if the ponies stopped and turned towards the screen, locked hooves with each other, and loudly chanted RACISM BAD to the viewer. Never fear though gentle reader, our daring author has managed to miss even this bright-hot neon billboard of a point. He correctly states that Cozy Glow used seemingly innocent language to manipulate others. But he curiously doesn't bring up the fact that the Student 6 themselves were integral to saving the day, and their courage ended up proving Neighsay wrong. The real threat didn't come from an evil foreigner, but from a pony just like him.

    Much like Cozy Glow, the author of the original piece twists innocent ideas into falsehoods and misses the point of the Magic of Friendship entirely. To think that a show made by a feminist and a gaggle of Canadian liberals would be anti-SJW in any capacity is an inherently absurd notion. In reality the show's themes range from politically neutral to blatantly liberal. Any attempts to fit it into some noble political ideology outside of that spectrum suggests a job at the local movie theatre may be in order, as it is pure projection.

    What could be done with Flash Sentry in the upcoming IDW Friendship is Magic Season 10 comic books?

    By: Not-Yet-A-Brony

    Since his debut in Equestria Girls (2013), the pony version of Flash Sentry has made infrequent cameo appearances on Friendship is Magic such as in Season Four’s “Three’s a Crowd” and “Twilight’s Kingdom - Part 1” and the Equestria Girls special Forgotten Friendship (2018). Despite his lack of both character development and utilization on the show, Flash Sentry has been kept alive as a pony character by a small yet devoted section of the Brony fandom through fan fiction, fan art, and fan discussions. His most recent cameo appearance in the series finale song “The Magic of Friendship Grows” as part of Twilight Sparkle’s montage of friends, family, and acquaintances in Season Nine’s “The Last Problem” also showed that the showrunners have not forgotten him.

    Even though Flash Sentry never had a chance to shine in Friendship is Magic before the show’s end, this does not preclude the possibility of him getting a chance in the spotlight in the IDW comic books. The upcoming May 2020 release of the Season 10 comic books could provide such an opportunity for Flash Sentry to reappear and utilize his untapped potential as a pony character.

    There are many opportunities in Season 10 for Flash Sentry to reappear as either a background pony, a one-shot character, or a reoccurring supporting character.

    Flash Sentry could appear in the Crystal Empire either as Shining Armor's subordinate, Cadance's confidant, Flurry Heart’s guardian, or many other friendship possibilities. And since Flurry Heart will one day succeed her parents as the future ruler of the Crystal Empire, there is the possibility that Flash could eventually become her Captain of the Royal Guards.

    In addition, Flash Sentry could serve as a member of Twilight Sparkle’s personal guards and as her royal announcer of arrivals and guests in Canterlot. His cameo appearance as part of Twilight’s friendship montage in “The Magic of Friendship Grows” also implies that he and Twilight had some interaction and connection before or during the time skip between “The Ending of the End” and “The Last Problem”. Flash and Twilight could interact together as friends with some ship-teasing thrown in for entertainment.

    Another possibility is that Flash Sentry could also become one of many substitute teachers recruited by Starlight Glimmer to teach at the School of Friendship in Ponyville on a part-time basis. When he is not busy with his Royal Guard duties, Flash could visit and teach some values he learned in the Royal Guards such as duty, honor, courage, etc. and how they could be important for friendship.

    Finally, Flash Sentry could also be the pony responsible for training and mentoring Gallus to become the first Griffon member of the Royal Guards as shown in “The Last Problem”. Depicting Flash’s efforts in guiding Gallus as a Royal Guard recruit could provide starting points for future stories focusing on Gallus’ character development and growth. Together, Flash and Gallus could also provide readers further insights into the Royal Guards’ history, duties, and place in Equestria.

    Thus, the Season 10 comic books could provide many opportunities for Flash Sentry to reappear for a bigger role and utilize his untapped potential as a pony character in Friendship is Magic.

    My Little Pony IS a liberal show

    By Amelia.

    Friendship is Magic is a show about human rights. Sure, humans in this case are ponies or other creatures, but the sentiment stays the same. Friendship is Magic has gone far out of its way on many occasions to display liberal messages, such as compassion to others regardless of their race, the evils of capitalism, the ugly reality that tradition should not be sacred, and certainty isn't always right thing to do, as well as messages that are clearly pro-LGBT, which is a liberal message.

    This is a show that has shown the evils of capitalism, racism, tribalism and has embraced LGBT culture, change and social progress while also calling tradition for tradition sake toxic and harmful to others, especially those who want to express themselves in new and exciting ways. The show features many strong female characters who did not abide by conservative values and live their lives, likewise, the show shows that boys do not have to live by such degrees of toxic masculinity, which several pieces of right-wing media shows.

    My Little Pony has the most liberal message of them all - just let people live their lives you stinking boomer.

    Enjoying My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic as an Objectivist

    Perhaps it would be best for me to preface this editorial by stating what it is not. This isn’t intended to start a political flamewar in the comments section down below. It certainly isn’t an attempt to argue that MLP:FiM was ever intended to promote the values of Objectivism. Far too often politically conscious members of the fandom attempt to claim an ideological monopoly upon the show. Such a mindset is mistaken, as what makes this fandom so amazing is the diverse backgrounds of its viewers who are united by their love of wholesome anime equines in this increasingly polarized era.

    What I seek to do is to provide another perspective on the show’s core message, the ‘magic of friendship.’

    Introduction to Objectivism

    Before I continue with my analysis, it would be best to summarize what Objectivism is to those who are unfamiliar. Objectivism is a philosophical movement created by Russian-American philosopher Ayn Rand (1905-1982) and espoused in her best-selling novels The Fountainhead (1942) and Atlas Shrugged (1957.)
    The principles of Objectivism are too numerous to list in this short editorial, but its core ethical values are 1.) A belief that reason is the best means of discerning information about reality, 2.) An objective morality can be determined via reason, 3.) the pursuit of one’s own happiness is the most morally virtuous way of living life (without aggressing against others.)

    When Lauren Faust and her fellow creators produced MLP:FiM it’s likely that they were attempting to create a show which would socialize the viewing audience into accepting the dominant morality in the contemporary West, altruism. Within philosophical parlance, altruism doesn’t refer to general benevolence and kindness. Rather it holds that the individual exists as a sacrificial object for the betterment of others. Objectivism instead holds that the individual possesses inherent value as a heroic figure capable of acting on the world it populates and has the right to pursue their own happiness.

    Interpreting the Characters/Morals through the Objectivist Framework

    With that in mind I believe that it is entirely possible for intelligent, rational individuals to enjoy the show and come to different conclusions about its principles and morals. Many have interpreted the Season 2 episode Feeling Pinkie Keen as an endorsement of blind religious faith. Others have instead argued that it is advocating for intellectual humility when dealing with phenomenon outside of ones own comprehension. From an Objectivist standpoint, one would interpret it to be a critique of reason as a means of discerning information about objective reality and a celebration of blinding accepting the unsubstantiated claims of others.

    Other messages in the show are more in line with the Objectivist framework. While certain characters (FlimFlam brothers, Filthy Rich) live up to the stereotype of the Evil Capitalist, others such as Rarity are the embodiment of the Objectivist Heroine. Much like the protagonist of Atlas Shrugged, Dagny Taggert, Rarity is the manifestation of an individual to produces great wealth for herself via the production of quality work. Throughout the series, she is portrayed as producing what she wants and doing so for her own enjoyment, material well-being, and happiness. While she might be the element of generosity, she never permits others to aggress against her and always stands up for her own self-interest and wellbeing.

    Such a commitment to pursuing one’s own happiness, even in the face of opposition from others echoes throughout the series. Fluttershy goes from prioritizing the emotional wellbeing of others even at her own expense to standing up for herself with poise and confidence. Rainbow Dash triumphed over the obstacles in her way by being proud of her talents and honing them exclusively for her own happiness. Pinkamena spreads joy and happiness exclusviely because it brought her happiness and satisfaction (“I want to see you smile.”) Every character accomplished their objectives without coercing others (with the state or otherwise) into abandoning their own self-interest.

    Starlight Glimmer gets a lot of flack for her ‘poorly written’ redemption arc. However, from an Objectivist framework she is the best reformed villain. When she is introduced, she is the leader of a collectivist cult that doesn’t necessarily preach the values of socialism, but instead vilifies the individual for possessing talents and using those talents for the furtherance of their own happiness. Seeking to subjugate the capacity of ponies to use their talents for themselves, Starlight guilts her acolytes into submission by telling them that they are only virtuous if they are willing to sacrifice their own agency, happiness, and freedom for the good of the collective. Starlight is redeemed in the end and forms friendships by living in harmony with others and respecting the rights of others (i.e. Trixie) to pursue what makes them happy and while also pursuing her own happiness through magical studies, freely forming friendships with individuals with whom make her happy, and defending the nation and friends which she benefits from (and flying kites.)

    Friendship is Selfish

    Ayn Rand once said, “It is impossible to say ‘I love you’ without I.” While general kindness and civility in interpersonal interactions is generally within one’s self-interest, one must realize that love is a fundamentally self-centered action. When one forms a bond with others, one elects to bestow friendship upon those whose values, and virtues align with ones own. When one is romantically involved, one never loves just for the sake of the other person. One discriminately states that another individual makes the self feel happiness, physically, emotionally, and otherwise. Individuals are never friends with those who persecute and maltreat them. One isn’t friends with those who degrade them and aggress against their right to engage in the pursuit of happiness.

    The Mane Six love one another because each of them have decided that the other personalities and virtues are acceptable to their own. The Mane Six start off in Season 1 hostile to one another but grow to love each other because they admire and celebrate the core values that each of them are the manifestation of Laughter, Honesty, Loyalty, Kindness, Generosity, and Magic (Talent). Surrounding oneself with individuals with these characteristics is within the rational self-interest of all individuals who value their own agency, dignity, and happiness.

    As we go forth from this show dedicated to friendship and love, it is important to remember the words of the late Neil Peart:

    “Live for yourself, there is nobody more worth living for.”

    Please drop a comment

    Maybe I'm alone with that but as a content creator faves and likes etc I get mean almost nothing to me, it's MUCH more rewarding to get a nice comment from someone enjoying whatever I did.
    Creators usually spend hours of time on their creations and with a little comment that takes mere seconds you can give back a little, encourage them and help their motivation to keep going.
    It just feels GOOD to get that kind of feedback.

    So please take that moment and also comment on things you enjoyed instead of only upvoting/faving/whatever-ing.

    Did Equestria Girls ever surpass the main series?

    By Reigning Blood

    As the spinoff, Equestria Girls was always the little sibling to Friendship is Magic. That never meant that it was ever necessarily inferior. Many derived sequels and spin-offs can surpass the original work. For example, The Godfather, Part II, Scream 2, Terminator 2 and even Rainbow Rocks have all been called superior to their respective originals. When I first joined the fandom, I remember the massive fandom backlash against the announcement of the Equestria Girls spin-off, accusing Hasbro of making a shameless bastardization of the series for profit. Most people can agree that the best Equestria Girls installments were better than the worst episodes of the main series, even if they don't believe it was ever as good as the best of the main series. There are even people who are only fans of Equestria Girls and not the main series or at least prefer the former to the latter.

    For me personally, I found that Equestria Girls surpassed the main series when I found that Friendship is Magic jumped the shark by reforming Starlight Glimmer. I found this to be a lazy effort to ride on the popularity of the far superior character in Equestria Girls, Sunset Shimmer. Reforming Starlight significantly changed the dynamic of the show, as from season six onward, Starlight has often been awkwardly forced into the series and made to look good and/or save the day at the expense of the main cast. I hated this as I credit the main cast for being the characters the series and its popularity were built on and I hated seeing them arbitrarily forced out of the picture so that Starlight can look competent in comparison. As Sunset was reformed relatively early in Equestria Girls whereas Starlight was reformed relatively late in the TV series, unlike Starlight, Sunset being a reformed major character did not significantly change the embryonic dynamic of the franchise. I loved Rainbow Rocks, the relatively early point in the series where she reforms and actually saves the day not at the expense of the main cast like Starlight, but by working with them, and has continued to do so in this way in later installments. While some might argue that Starlight was better depicted in later seasons, for me, the damage was already done.

    If reforming Starlight is the worst thing Friendship is Magic has done, the worst thing Equestria Girls did was have the human Twilight Sparkle join the Equestria Girls main cast. I dislike her for being a know-it-all and a crybaby, and being rather unnecessary as Princess Twilight's role with the Equestria Girls main cast was already well replaced by Sunset. But although she is a clearly inferior replacement to Princess Twilight, I still did not find her to be too significantly different from her. Like many, I also dislike Timber Spruce, but as he does not appear very frequently, I don't so much hate him as not really care about him. Both of these decisions still happened relatively early in Equestria Girls whereas Starlight significantly changed a well-established series dynamic for the worse nearly after five whole seasons.

    Thoughts on Dragon Growth and Age (in MLP)

    By: A Shy Brony

    Disclaimer: This is my first soapbox I have ever submitted, so I apologize if the content is lackluster.

    I don’t have many friends to discuss My Little Pony with, so I spend a lot of time thinking about the unknowns of Friendship is Magic. With Soapboxes potentially ending for a while, a new boost of confidence thanks to a Public Speaking class, and with Friendship is Magic having concluded, I thought I’d share my ideas on how the dragons mature. It should be noted that I have not read many of the comics, so there could be potential information I am lacking, so take this as an episode only interpretation.

    The main point I would like to present is that age comes slowly for dragons, but growth can be accelerated by a dragons greed. The best example of this can be seen when we compare the few adult dragons to Spike in the Season 2 episode. Secret of My Excess. The red dragon from Dragonshy (Season 1), the green dragon from Owl’s Well that Ends Well (Season 1), and Dragon Lord Torch all share three important factors: they all are quite large, they all have wings, and they all talk coherently. Greedy Giant Spike however, did not have wings, nor did he talk, Spike only made Godzilla like screams. The wings are the most important factor, since as far as I can recall, every dragon has wings of some form (even Kraggle has tiny wings!). Since every dragon has wings of some form (or will gain them), we can safely assume wings are an important part of dragon maturity.

    Which leads to the second, more obvious point about a dragon’s age, is that they age slowly. Spike did not gain his wings until season 8. Dragon Lord Torch has been around since the time of the Pillars even. Given this incredibly long lifespan, we can assume that the adult dragons we see are probably at least a century or two old, plenty of time to get greedy and build a nice big treasure hoard. All of the young dragons in the show are roughly the same size (except Spike of course), so these dragons either haven’t got greedy yet, or they have a way of controlling their greed impulses. Spike and Smolder don’t really seem that greedy at all, which explains why Spike and Smolder have not grown to enormous sizes in the future. Ember seems to fit this description as well. As Dragon Lord, I’m sure Ember could amass great wealth if she desired, and yet she does not, or is not driven with greed. Knowing what we do now about Garble, even he might follow a similar route of a greed free life.

    The final point I would like to bring up is whether or not dragons have a max size limit they reach if they do not become greedy. Will Spike and Smolder stay the same size, or continue to grow in the future? I once thought this question was unanswerable, but while writing this soapbox, I remembered Sludge from Season 8, Father Knows Beast. Sludge is an adult dragon, yet he has not grown to a large size, it seems he is around the same height as future Spike perhaps. Though we can’t judge all adult dragons based on one, it is an interesting coincidence. As for why Sludge hasn’t had a growth spurt, the answer is that he is more slothful than greedy. While Sludge did gather up things from the castle into his room, he only took what made him comfortable, even tossing out what he deemed unnecessary (including best pony in the middle of a bath). Recall how Spike went all across Ponyville to gather things for his hoard, true commitment right there.

    I believe these thoughts are fairly sound, though there is at least one problem apparent to me, the dragon Hearth’s Warming story with Scales, from Season 8, The Hearth’s Warming Club. Scales clearly desired to be Dragon Lord, but she does not grow to an enormous size like other adult dragons. Some possible answers I came up with for this are:

    Scales was more interested in power and respect, the wealth was just a side effect.
    Scales did grow from greed, but after the story ends.
    The story was made up to begin with. Since we know Torch is really old, this story would have to have taken place way before his time, since it seems only young dragons can compete in the Gauntlet of Fire ( or Torch took the scepter from Scales with either trickery or force.)

    I believe the third is the most likely, just a fun dragon story made up to win a story telling competition.

    So, to recap, dragons in MLP age and grow slowly. They can accelerate their growth by embracing their greedy nature, but this will not affect their age. It may also be a dragon will hit a peak growth level without the influence of greed.

    Remember that these are all just my opinions, and that I haven’t read many of the comics either.

    Are people taking MLP a bit too seriously?

    By Ian Sahchez

    Hello! I've been a fan of MLP since 2011/2012 yet I noticed that maybe the brony fandom is taking FiM a bit too seriously? I'm not talking about the passionate fans that make fanfiction like the excellent Past sins by Penstroke, the great Storm's Lulluby fancomic by dsana, the tons of fan music, games etc. I'm talking about the fans that maybe get a bit too angry over a family friendly cartoon. Way back in 2019 I was surprisingly shocked at the amount of attacks and death threats Jim Miller got(something that happened multiple times in the past as well). And while I have my issues with season 9(believe me I have) I don't think it's worth getting THAT angry over it. I honestly kind of wish fans were more like they were in 2012. Just having fun and discusing.