Characters / Friendship Is Magic: Major Villains

They are the antagonists of the show. They activelynote  seek to conquer Equestria, bend its pony denizens to their will and eliminate those who stand in their way of World Domination, such as the Princesses and the Elements of Harmony.

See here for the ex-antagonists.

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Arc Villains

    Universal Tropes 

  • Antagonist Abilities: Most of the villains are armed with "unfair" powers, including:
  • All There in the Manual: A lot of what happens to the villains beyond their initial appearances that the show doesn't cover (save the Season 5 finale, which were Alternate Timelines) is covered in the comic book series. Likewise their pasts are shown as well in the mini-series, My Little Pony: FIENDship is Magic. Though if they're considered canon or not is up to interpretation.
    • Queen Chrysalis is revealed to have been blasted far away from pony civilization and into a town of sickeningly cute kitten creatures. She and her kind feed on them and take over their village before she tries to take revenge on Twilight for her defeat by kidnapping the CMC, hoping to force Twilight into becoming her new servant. It fails when Twilight beats her in a battle and Chrysalis is imprisoned. She manages to escape some time later and teams with a few minor villains with King Sombra to take over the Crystal Empire. She flees when she realizes Sombra's true plans is to unleash the Umbrum, evil forces that are worse and more powerful then her and the changelings. After the events of "To Where and Back Again", Chrysalis still remains at large.
    • Whatever force that turned Luna into Nightmare Moon has it's army, the Nightmare Forces, kidnap Rarity to use as it's new avatar to attack Equestria. It fails and is seemingly permanently dissipated when Luna and the Mane 6 convince Rarity that they'll never abandon her and, with no more fear or resentment to feed from, is vanquished. It also reveals she spent her 1000 year banishment giving nightmares to ponykind as revenge, explaining her infamy despite how quickly she was defeated in the show.
    • Sunset Shimmer's redemption and story was shown in the following Equestria Girls movies, Rainbow Rocks and Friendship Games. But the comics go into more detail about her past with Celestia, how she ended up in the human world and her first encounter with the Humane Five.
    • King Sombra manages to regain his form from one of his pieces left over after being initially vaporized with the help of Radiant Hope, a Crystal Pony who was his childhood friend. He manages to reclaim the Crystal Empire and defeat the heroes, before revealing his endgame is to free his true kind, the Umbrum or Shadow Ponies, from underneath the Crystal Palace. Thanks to Radiant Hope acting as his Morality Chain who convinces him he doesn't have to be evil, however, he turns on and reseals the Umbrum nearly at the cost of his life. The princesses save him and Sombra gains a true pony form, redeeming him and allowing him to be with Radiant Hope, as they set out on a journey through Equestria to restore Princess Amore, a pony Sombra had crystallized and smashed during his evil days in the past.
  • Arc Villain: They each act as the main antagonist of a particular story arc, variably at the beginning or end of a season.
  • Bad Future: Each past Arc Villain gets a different one where they rule supreme due to the absence of the Mane Six during the Season 5 Finale.
    • Nightmare Moon is shown ruling over an endless night in Equestria.
    • Discord is shown tormenting Celestia and Luna from afar, ruling over a truly chaotic Equestria.
    • Queen Chrysalis also appears to be ruling over Equestria, Twilight and Spike get caught up in her and her changelings trying to stop out La Résistance.
    • King Sombra regains his complete power over the Crystal Empire, re-enslaves the Crystal Ponies, brainwashes them into being his personal army, and then set out to conquer Equestria.
    • Twilight and Spike see Lord Tirek destroying a forest from afar. They don't stick around long enough to know just what else he has done in this timeline.
  • Dark Is Evil: Aside from Discord and Starlight Glimmer, every villain incorporates black into their color schemes and otherwise has a dark appearance.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: No matter how close they come to victory, The Power of Friendship (and occasionally The Power of Love) blindsides them and spells their doom after they've written it off as empty hope.
  • Evil Is Bigger: Most of the major villains are bigger then the average pony. Starlight Glimmer is the exception, since she's a semi-ordinary unicorn. Ultimately, she ends up pulling a Heel–Face Turn.
  • Fangs Are Evil: To date, every major villain except Starlight Glimmer has fangs. Or in Discord's case, a fang. Later averted with the changelings (save Chrysalis) who perform a Heel–Race Turn and ditch the fangs in the Season 6 finale "To Where and Back Again".
  • The Good Guys Always Win: The villains come close to victory, some come closer than others, but in the end, they always lose. If they ever manage to subvert defeat and come back for another round, they usually end up becoming good guys themselves. Discord and Starlight Glimmer being the prime examples.
  • Knight of Cerebus: In the weekly Slice of Life episodes, the typical villains the cast encounters are just Jerkasses who make their lives difficult for a day or two. These characters on the other hand are powerful, menacing, and ambitious. When one of them shows up, the playing-around stops and the cast gets serious. Also note they manage to be this to each other; every new villain manages to top their predecessors for vileness.
  • Lack of Empathy: None of them show much care for anyone threatened or harmed by their actions. Even the changelings, whom feed off love , only regard it as food, and were blindsided by it being used against them.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: The list goes: Nightmare Moon, Discord, Queen Chrysalis, King Sombra, and Lord Tirek. Subverted with Starlight Glimmer, but then that's the entire idea. Starlight Glimmer then ends up subverting this again when she truly becomes a good guy.
  • Near Villain Victory: These guys admittedly come dangerously close to victory, only to have it snatched away in the very end.
  • Mysterious Past: While Sombra is widely considered to be the most gratuitous case, many of them have very little back story, if any at all. The Fiendship Is Magic comics fill in the blanks for most of them, though the comics are Loose Canon.
  • Obviously Evil: Scroll down the page; none of these characters could be mistaken for heroes. Even Starlight Glimmer looks creepy thanks to The Unsmile she's constantly giving.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Save for Queen Chrysalis and Starlight Glimmer, every villain so far has been an old enemy of Celestia's that was defeated and sealed away years ago, and has now broken free. Although, in the comic series, Chrysalis applied for this when she was defeated and imprisoned within her own castle at the end of her arc, temporarily putting her out of commission until the Fiendship Is Magic micro-series. It eventually turns out that according to Fiendship Is Magic, Queen Chrysalis and her minions were this trope. Celestia defeated them in the past and sealed them in a volcano until they eventually escaped by tricking a dragon.
  • Shadow Archetype: Each villain embodies certain themes that are total antithesis to the shows theme of friendship. Nightmare Moon embodies jealousy, Discord is disharmony, Chrysalis is selfishness, King Sombra is tyranny, Tirek is pride, and Starlight Glimmer is resentment, intolerance and vengeance.
  • Take Over the World: While their motivations for doing so vary, inevitably their goals are to conquer Equestria and/or depose Celestia and Luna.
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: Nightmare Moon is the one aversion since the show had yet to set its tone, everyone since has been increasingly this. Queen Chrysalis has the honor of being the trope's page image.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: The Villains always succeed in their most basic plans and gain an advantage. Come the end, however, it all comes crashing down.

    Nightmare Moon 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/moon__by_porygon2z_d8m9eim6.png
"From this moment forth, the night will last FOREVER! AHAHAHAHAHAAA!!"

An evil and wicked creature born from dark magic fueling Princess Luna's jealously and bitterness. Her desire to create a never-ending night forced Princess Celestia to use the Elements of Harmony to imprison her in the moon, seemingly for eternity. However, after one thousand years, the stars help her to escape, and this time she attacks first, leaving Equestria stuck on night time. After a short rampage, she is defeated and purified of her darkness by Twilight Sparkle and her friends.

In the comics, it turns out that Nightmare Moon was the product of Luna being corrupted by an outside entity preying on her unhappiness in having her night ignored, nor was she the first. Fiendship Is Magic #4 had her corrupt the inhabitants of the moon into the Nightmare Forces, who would enable her return. See the Expanded Universe characters page for more.

  • Depending on the Writer: In the comics, She is the product of something possessing Luna. The cartoon presented her transformation as purely Luna's decision and power at work, and has yet to even imply that outside forces were involved. Albeit the cartoon does show Luna having a shocked expression as she begins transforming, indicating at the very least that she did not intend to become Nightmare Moon or did not realize what would happen when she did. Product of something possessing Luna or not, the way the black mist appears around Luna as she begins transforming suggests that whatever turned her into Nightmare Moon did not come from Luna herself.
  • The Dreaded: During her absence she has become ponykind's boogeyman. "Nightmare Night" is dedicated to how scary she is.
  • Dick Dastardly Stops to Cheat: She quickly learned where the Elements of Harmony were and could get to them much faster than the Mane Cast. She had no reason to even bother with the Mane Cast at all, let alone try to deal with them indirectly through proxies, traps and illusions. Yet she went after them anyway, and in doing so helped prove their worthiness to wield the Elements.
  • Driven by Envy: According to the Creation Myth, the problem started when she grew jealous of how their subjects went out and enjoyed the daytime but slept through her beautiful nights.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • For both Celestia (sun/moon, day/night, etc.) and Luna (see The Sacred Darkness).
    • Her Shadowbolts form is this to the Wonderbolts.
  • Evil Former Friend: Towards Princess Celestia. She used to be a co-ruler, prior to her Face–Heel Turn.
  • Evil Is Bigger: Turning into Nightmare Moon makes her about the same size as Celestia.
  • Evil Is Hammy: While hammy, "Luna Eclipsed" subverts this by showing Luna was hammier before she turned evil.
  • Evil Laugh: A big fan of it; see her page quote.
  • Evil Plan: Eternal Night, with an era of evil as a side dish! Not to mention it would've actually killed every living thing under the sky.
  • The Evil Princess: She is in a literal sense an "evil princess", but her position seems to (and was supposed to) be that of a queen. There isn't anyone higher in position than hers to overthrow with the exception of her equal and fellow princess, Celestia.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Has a throaty, regal and commanding voice.
  • Exotic Eye Designs: Hers look more like dragon eyes than pony eyes.
  • The Fair Folk: Nightmare Moon's legend post-Elements was told like this. Disguise yourself so she can’t recognize you, give her a candy offering so she could fill her stomach with that instead of you, and above all, never piss her off. Only then she may just might decide against devouring everyone on Equestria... until next year, that is.
  • Fangs Are Evil: Nightmare Moon's original design didn't have fangs, but the Nightmare Night portrayals of her do. Beginning with Season 4's flashback to Luna's transformation, her design was updated to include fangs.
  • Fisher King: Naturally, when she seizes control of Equestria, the land is plunged into never-ending darkness.
  • Fleur de Lis: Her boots and collar appear to have this integrated into their design.
  • Fusion Dance: The fusion of Luna and the Nightmare Forces, as revealed in the comics.
  • God of Evil: Downplayed; there is nothing evil about night or dreams (again see The Sacred Darkness) but she uses them for evil.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Even though she's called a princess, her power, as with Celestia, is that of a queen. Word of God states that it was due to Executive Meddling to prevent this very trope from being invoked that Celestia and Luna were given the title of Princess. Nightmare Moon remains a straight example of this regardless of title change.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: She was born of Princess Luna's resentment of her sister, Celestia, being appreciated more than her. Her actions left Celestia the universally loved Big Good and her being banished and forgotten; backfiring in every way.
  • Good Eyes, Evil Eyes: Glowing Eyes of Doom with Hellish Pupils, definitely evil.
  • Good Wings, Evil Wings: Has feathery wings like any Pegasus, but they're drawn with a noticeably more bat-like outline.
  • Hellish Horse: Unlike Luna, she's truly malevolent and frightening.
  • Hellish Pupils: Has vertically slitted pupils.
  • Hot Goddess: For the same reason as Princess Celestia and Princess Luna, considering that Nightmare Moon is their Evil Counterpart.
  • Large Ham: Like most of the villains in this show, she loves to ham it up and particularly when making declarations of victory.
  • Meaningful Name: She rules the moon and is most certainly a thing of nightmares. "Sleepless in Ponyville" revealed Luna has power over dreams, meaning her evil self can give others nightmares.
  • Menacing Stroll: Performs a brief one towards Celestia shortly after her transformation.
  • More Than Mind Control: According to the comics, Luna was corrupted by being told she could use Nightmare Moon's power to force ponies to respect the night like she desired.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Nightmare is enough.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: When Twilight Sparkle sets off with her new friends to find the Elements of Harmony, they only have a partial idea of what they are looking for. Nightmare Moon's attempts to stop them provide the clues that are needed to figure out the rest of the missing information. With the comics in consideration, this may be justified. For when Nightmare Moon tried to stop Twilight and her friends, Luna may have been Fighting from the Inside.
  • The Night That Never Ends: Her ultimate goal.
  • Offstage Villainy: The Bad Future where she rules is implied to be worse than King Sombra's or Queen Chrysalis's. From what we see of it, it is the most peaceful and intact (not even showing the damage Word of God claimed eternal night would bring), and she shows less cruelty to her subjects and others than any other villain.
  • Oh, Crap!: When Twilight Sparkle discovers the sixth element of magic and the mane six proceed to use the Elements of Harmony to stop her.
  • One-Winged Angel: Serves as this for Princess Luna.
  • The Power of Hate: According to Word of God, she came to be because Princess Luna envied her sister to the point of irrational hatred.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: In the bad future where she was victorious and rules over Equestria, she's the only villain who's even remotely pleasant to her subjects. After all, how can they adore and admire her if she treats them with scorn and cruelty?
  • Prehensile Hair: Her mane and tail are made up of the purple smoke stuff she's also capable of entirely transforming into; it can move as she pleases. She most notably uses her mane to flick Rarity on the chin when she makes her appearance in Ponyville.
  • Psycho Electro: Her lightning powers accompany her hammy moments.
  • Punny Name: Nightmare Moon.
    • She went mad from jealousy and The Mare of the Moon was a lunatic.
    • Also her change of name. Luna is Latin (and Spanish) for "moon".
    • The dark areas or "seas" of our moon are all named "Mare something-or-other". It's too bad they're not pronounced the samenote .
  • Repressive but Efficient: In The Cutie Re-Mark, the Bad Future in which Nightmare Moon succeeded in taking over Equestria has her running the kingdom as a functional society, unlike all the other villains' futures. She's also notably the only one to have members of the Mane Six willingly helping her.
  • The Resenter: She's jealous of her sister gaining attention from everypony since they're awake to see the sun rise, but not when she raises the moon.
  • Retcanon: Given she was originally defeated before doing anything worse than briefly KO Princess Celestia, it's nigh-impossible to rationalize Nightmare Moon's infamy and Princess Luna's guilt demonstrated in "Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep?" unless one accepts Nightmare Moon's actions in the comics as canon.
  • Sanity Slippage: In the Bad Future where she won in "The Cutie Remark," she's noticeably more manic, with a constant bug-eyed expression.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: She was sealed in the Moon for a thousand years as "The Mare in the Moon".
  • Self-Duplication: Combined with Voluntary Shapeshifting. Nightmare Moon transforms into a fictional trio called the Shadowbolts based on Rainbow Dash's idols, the Wonderbolts, in order to distract her from helping her friends. However, only the female member speaks (in Nightmare Moon's voice), so it is also possible that the two male members are non-sentient dummies or she couldn't make a convincing male voice for them.
  • Shock and Awe: She uses lightning to escape the Summer Sun Celebration in the second episode.
  • Shout-Out: To Maleficent. "STAND BACK, YOU FOALS! BWA-HAHAHAHAHAHA!"
  • Spell My Name with an "S": "Nightmare Moon" has been used by Hasbro and its toy line, by the trading cards, by The Hub, by WeLoveFine, and by Lauren Faust, while "Night Mare Moon" has been used by Hasbro, by at least one episode synopsis, by Lauren Faust, and partially by the single-volume storybook adaptation of the pilot episodes.
  • Starter Villain: The first villain in the series, and only lasted long enough to establish the friendships, and show their abilities and personalities, which the series would build on.
  • Suicidal Cosmic Temper Tantrum: Word of God confirms that ponies couldn’t grow food without sunlight, which would ultimately kill off everything. It's unknown if she knew or cared about the consequences.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: A literal case in the comics, as Nightmare Moon was born from evil magic taking over Luna. In both continuities, Nightmare Moon is larger, more powerful, and eviller than Luna.
  • Super Smoke: Can transform into smoke to move more rapidly and then reform.
  • That Man Is Dead: During their first confrontation, Celestia begs "Luna" to stop her rampage and lower the moon. Her sister responds with: "Luna? I am Nightmare Moon!"
  • To Create a Playground for Evil: According to Lauren Faust, this is what Nightmare Moon's eternal night would have resulted in. Confirmed in the IDW comics as the goal of the Nightmare Forces.
  • Tragic Monster: Whether Luna was trapped, hapless in Nightmare Moon, or to some degree complicit with her, Luna was aware enough of her wrongdoings that she developed a major guilt complex once freed. Also this to Celestia, as the fight against her was one of the only two times in the show she was reduced to tears.
  • Tranquil Fury: Has a brief moment of this during her confrontation with Celestia, striding calmly out of a cloud of smoke with sinister background music playing.
  • Unflinching Walk: In "The Cutie Remark, Part 2" she casually strolls through the Everfree forest, blasting timberwolves with her magic and carrying a chained-up Spike behind her, all without breaking stride for even a moment.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Could you believe someone as insane as she is used to be sweet, socially awkward Princess Luna?
  • Villainous Legacy: Nightmare Moon frequently acts as this for stories focusing on Princess Luna, since Luna is constantly trying to redeem herself for her past actions. For example, "Luna Eclipsed" has Luna trying to overcome her bad publicity and the shadow of her evil counterpart.
  • Vocal Evolution: Her voice is deeper and more sinister in the pilot than in her later appearances, which have speaking nearly the same as the restored Princess Luna.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Takes on several different forms throughout the episode, including a thorn to enrage a Manticore and the Shadowbolts to tempt Rainbow Dash.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Se was born from the jealousy and resentment Luna felt towards Celestia for their subjects loving her day and shunning the night, and deep down she still wants to be seen as her sister's equal and receive the same love and devotion she got. This is highlighted in the Deviations comic; when the cast says Prince Blueblood is almost as bad as her, Nightmare Moon is horrified and protests she just wants them to appreciate her and her night. She essentially talks herself down into being Luna again as the Mane Five reassure her they do love her night, and maybe it's not too late to make up with Celestia, either.
  • You Don't Look Like You: Her official toy is relatively show-accurate, but she's given a purple mane. Justified, as a mane made of stars is pretty hard to translate into a Real Life sharable format.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: A Blue mane with a space pattern of stars flowing in it as well.

    Discord 

    Queen Chrysalis 

Queen Chrysalis

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/queen_chrysalis_by_90sigma-d4xm1q62_3511.png

"First, we take Canterlot! And then, all of Equestria!"

Debut: "A Canterlot Wedding"note 

Voiced by: Kathleen Barrnote 

The former Queen of the changelings, bug-like pony-shaped creatures that can transform into those that you love. She masquerades as Princess Cadance during the Season 2 finale in a bid to conquer Equestria. She also appears in IDW's comic books as the main antagonist through the first four-issue Story Arc.

  • 100% Adoration Rating: The comic book made obvious that her changelings are very content with her as their ruler because Chrysalis is an effective leader and takes on herself the duty to provide food for her subjects. They are close enough as to joke and share a few laughs together with their Queen. It quickly plummets to zero in "To Where and Back Again" after she decides "It's All About Me!" and the entire changeling species pulls a Heel–Race Turn, except for her.
  • Abnormal Limb Rotation Range: She can turn her head 360 degrees, both horizontally and vertically. The effect is very unsettling.
  • All There in the Script: Her name isn't mentioned in her debut episode and was initially revealed by Word of God. The comics and show have since used it.
  • Arch-Enemy: In the comic, she was focused solely on Twilight since she was the one who stopped her plan the first time. with the crux of her revenge being that she would drain Twilight and make her destroy her friends.
  • Arc Villain: Of the second season's finale, the sixth season's finale, and the first arc of the IDW comics.
  • Bad Boss:
    • As shown in My Little Pony: FIENDship is Magic, she thinks nothing of punishing a commander for complaining by throwing him to his death in a lava pool and then promoting a random new changeling to take his place.
    • In the Season Six finale, it's implied Chrysalis knew all along that Changelings take on stronger forms through sharing love, but deliberately conditioned and misled her subjects to steal love instead, thus preventing them from satisfying their hunger and completing their Metamorphosis. Chrysalis would then be free to abuse her authority and influence as well as take advantage of the Changelings' constant starvation to maintain control and power over them to further her own goals. She wasn't happy at all with Thorax for coming up with the idea to share love, and branded him a traitor.
  • Battle Trophy: That distorted black tiara she wears? According to Fiendship Is Magic #5, it was originally the golden crown of King Orion of Timbucktu, which she stole and magically warped after conquering his city, which is when she started calling herself Queen Chrysalis rather than just Chrysalis.
  • Beam-O-War: Chrysalis is able to cast an offensive magical beam, and thanks to draining Shining Armor's love she can overpower even Princess Celestia!
  • Benevolent Boss: While she is a sadistic bitch to just about everypony else, she seems to care to some extent about her subjects. She is the only major antagonist in the show whose primary motivation (at least according to her) is to do something for others (that is, to find food for the changelings), while most of the others have motivations centered on themselves. Naturally, the fandom took this and ran with it.
    • This comes up again in Fiendship Is Magic — while being imprisoned, Chrysalis tells the Mane Six that she has no-one left to talk to because she sent all her minions into hibernation, so that they would not waste their energy in vain. Rainbow Dash remarks that it's a surprisingly noble act coming from her. She may have been lying in order to gain the ponies' sympathy and facilitate her escape, since as soon as the opportunity presents itself the whole army is shown to be very much awake. Either that, or Chrysalis has a way to wake up the changelings instantly. If she had been informed the Six were coming, she may also have woken them up ahead of time in anticipation of an escape attempt.
    • "To Where and Back Again" rather decreases this perception, since she was implied to have knowingly kept her subjects in a state of constant starvation so as to control them with promises of food.
  • Big Bad: She set off the conflict of "A Canterlot Wedding" by kidnapping and impersonating Cadance in order to conquer Equestria; and that of "To Where and Back Again" by kidnapping the princesses and Mane Six to, once again, conquer Equestria. She's also the Big Bad in the first arc of the tie-in comics, and is set to return in Season 8 as a major villain again.
  • Big Bad Friend: Towards the Mane six and Princess Celestia when she's disguised as Cadance in the Canterlot Wedding arc.
  • Big "NO!": In classic villain tradition, she gives one just before her defeat by the real Cadance and Shining Armor.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: As Cadance, she acts snotty and unpleasable. This is what tips Twilight off that it's not really Cadance.
  • Brainwashed: She magically brainwashes Shining Armor to feed off his love for Cadance and prevent him from maintaining the force-field stopping her minions from invading Canterlot.
  • The Chessmaster: As she points out, she outsmarted everyone, even Celestia, in "A Canterlot Wedding". The Mane Six are a little more wise about this in the comic, but she still leaves them with no choice but to play into her hands.
  • Classic Villain: Pride and Ambition.
  • Color Motif: Dark green. Her hive has shades of dark green, and her magic aura is a Sickly Green Glow. In color psychology, dark green stands for greed and selfishness. She deliberately misled her former subjects and kept them starving to keep herself in power, which come Season 6, cost her everything but her life.
  • Control Freak: Seen mainly when she's disguised as Cadance, but given how her insectoid appearance and control of an insectoid pony army both strike similarity to that of a Bee Queen, this can be seen as thematically justified. Her Control Freak tendencies were what kept her (now former) subjects literally starving for love and unable to achieve their final Metamorphosis. Once the changelings break free from her, Chrysalis ends up with nothing but her life.
  • The Conqueror: Her comics incarnation seems to have this trope as her MO during her first rampage a thousand years ago, having conquered at least two other kingdoms before Princess Celestia finally stepped in and decisively defeated her.
  • Cool Chair: Her throne. It doubles as a Power Nullifier strong enough to block even Discord's magic.
  • Crocodile Tears: Whenever someone calls Chrysalis as Cadance out on her questionable ways, she bursts into fake tears and accuses that they "just want to ruin her special day". Fools everypony, even Princess Celestia. Except Twilight Sparkle.
  • Cute Monster Girl: Despite being a villain, there's no denying Chrysalis is quite pretty for a bug-like creature.
  • Dark Action Girl: Is notably the first villain to win a straight-up fight with Celestia.
  • Devil in Plain Sight: Not the most obvious example, but the very first time we see her in disguise, she smiles wickedly, and then proceeds to treat everypony around her like crap. Thankfully for her, everypony readily writes it off due to the circumstances except Twilight Sparkle.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?:
    • She won a Beam-O-War with Princess Celestia after absorbing enough of Shining Armor's love. Even she was shocked at her victory (because according to the comics, Celestia was the only one who ever decisively defeated her before). Unfortunately for her, the exact same love is used by Cadance and Shining Armor to return the favor.
    • In "To Where and Back Again", she outdoes herself Up to Eleven by capturing all of the Royals, all of the Element-bearers, and eventually even Discord — courtesy of her Power Nullifier throne.
  • Enfant Terrible: While we don't see her as a child, she admits she's dreamed of watching her minions ransack a city, causing mass panic and suffering, since she was small.
    • According to Fiendship Is Magic, she was never technically a child, being the last of the changelings to be spawned from their "mother plant", effectively born into her current state of mind.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Completely beating the one pulled by Twilight's brother, friends, and mentor when Twilight straight out accuses her of being evil while she [masquerades as Princess Cadance, after she pulls a Wounded Gazelle Gambit to alienate Twilight from them, she returns and imprisons Twilight underground, ultimately confirming her suspicions. Lampshaded later on when she takes pleasure in gloating about how Twilight's peers were too caught up in their wedding planning to give Twilight's suspicions any consideration, thus allowing her plan to carry on smoothly.
  • Evil Counterpart: To both Princess Cadance (both empowered by love) and Princess Celestia (tall, powerful queen with The Chessmaster streak). As of Season 6, she becomes this to the newly appointed changeling king Thorax, with him being a benevolent leader with a majestic form, while Chrysalis is selfish and cruel with a holed, withered body.
  • Evil Gloating: She saves most of it for when she's alone or when it's smart to do so. Both season finales that she appears in see Chrysalis engage in gloating when she's almost won.
  • Evil Laugh: Engages in this, especially when the odds favor her.
  • Evil Plan: Impersonate royalty, invade the rest of Equestria, and transform the country in a love buffet for herself and her subjects. She likes this plan so much that she uses it twice.
  • The Farmer and the Viper: Issue #3 of the comic shows that Chrysalis and her changelings landed in a village of happy kittens who welcome them with open arms, and they immediately conquer it and drain the love from them, turning them into husks.
  • Fatal Flaw: Pride. Chrysalis is incredibly competent, strategic, and has come close to winning (in her second appearance pretty much closer than all the other villains combined), but her narcissism and pride consistently bite her in the flank, as it blinds her to the flaws of her plans. As of Season 6, it cost her everything but her life, as her former subjects saw her ways were wrong and sided with their new ruler Thorax, thus making Chrysalis their enemy.
  • The Fighting Narcissist: Very haughty, but it's not about her appearance. In her Villain Song she declares "I could care less about the dress!" This is also her biggest weakness, as her self absorbed nature blinds her to flaws in her plans.
  • Giggling Villain: She giggles rather menacingly when she's overlooking her handiwork.
  • Glamour Failure: When posing as Cadance, her eyes briefly flash to their true form. She also lacks the same color magic aura as Cadance, but nopony seems to notice.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: The first sign something is off with Cadance is her eyes lighting up green.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!:
    • She resembles an Alicorn (albeit a twisted, insectile one), she calls herself "Queen", and she's evil. Also, in a literal example of this trope, Celestia tries to fight her once she reveals herself. However, Chrysalis had absorbed enough of Shining Armor's love to defeat Celestia at that point. She's the first villain ever to physically defeat Celestia (though it's implied Discord could do so if wanted to).
    • In the Season Six finale, it's implied Chrysalis knew the Changelings were starving, but deliberately misled them and made them suffer constant hunger just for the sake of having control over them. As when Thorax showed the Changelings how to love, she refuses to join them, pretty much cementing her evil, callous, two-faced attitude. She eventually loses her throne and status as Queen when Thorax overthrows her.
  • Good Eyes, Evil Eyes: She has green eyes with vertically slitted pupils that are more like those of reptile than those of a pony.
  • Goth: Her sinister, eerie and broken appearance makes her stick out in a cheerful cartoon.
  • Goth Girls Know Magic: She has a gothic appearance and is a capable magic caster, able to shapeshift and fire magic beams from her horn.
  • Handshake Refusal: In "To Where and Back Again", when Starlight offers her a hoof up and chance at redemption, Chrysalis slaps her away, refusing her chance to be good..
  • Harmful to Minors: Kills a Luvcat in front of the Cutie Mark Crusaders in the comics.
  • Hellish Pupils: They're almost reptilian. One way to tell it's her in disguise is looking at the eyes when they briefly shine and reveal this.
  • Hoist By Her Own Petard:
    • Became as powerful as she did from Shining Armor's love for Princess Cadance, which she notes is stronger than she imagined. In the end, Cadance and Shining Armor let her have it with that same love.
    • In the comics, she intended to drain Twilight Sparkle of her magic once the supernatural-enhancing Secretariat Comet caused her powers to reach their peak. The thing is, the comet bolstered Twilight as well, and she knows destructive spells beyond anything that Chrysalis had ever expected.
    • In the Season 6 finale, she attempts to drain Thorax of his love to show the others what happens to traitors. She didn't expect Thorax deciding to share his love with her, leading to her defeat.
  • Horns of Villainy: As a grotesque perversion of an alicorn, Chrysalis's horn is long, twisted, and gnarled.
  • Humiliation Conga: Her defeat at the end of the comics. While she clearly survived, she received a humiliating defeat at the hands of Twilight and she and her army were temporary trapped inside of the very castle they were using as their evil lair, and were forced to endure a giant singing and dancing Pinkie Pie doll as a guard. She ultimately arose from this humiliation at the end of Fiendship Is Magic, but still, this was definitely not one of her proudest moments.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: As Cadance, she nuzzles, clings to, and otherwise gets really close to Shining Armor. Just her keeping up the pretense of being a bride-to-be, right? Nope! She also does the same to the mannequin serving as her surrogate groom during her Villain Song (where there is nobody around to fool), despite singing about how she "doesn't love the groom", and indulges in a little privacy invasion towards Shining Armor after she's transformed and revealed herself, though in this last case she probably did it to mock the real Cadance.
  • I Have Your Wife: In the comic, she ensures that the Mane Six will obey her orders by holding the Cutie Mark Crusaders hostage.
  • Imposter Forgot One Detail: She doesn't understand Twilight's Sunshine rhyme that she used to sing with the real Cadance, which results in the latter being suspicious of her. Her snide behavior during the wedding preparations also rings extremely false to Twilight, who remembers a very sweet, positive and caring Cadance.
  • Insect Queen:
    • Queen Chrysalis is the leader of the insectoid/equinoids called changelings, who imitate other ponies and feed on their love. Her goal is to take over Equestria and use the land as a virtually infinite food source for her colony. Aside from this image, there's no evidence regarding their reproductive methods that she fills this role in any fashion other than symbolism. This is further compounded by her origin story, which states that she was born amongst the first of the changeling hordes.
    • This is no longer the case as of the Season Six finale, as Chrysalis is defeated and is ousted as the leader of the Changelings, who are now taken lead by the new Changeling King Thorax.
  • Irony: She is powered by love, yet her first defeat was caused by a spell powered by love.
  • It's All About Me: The Season 6 finale reveals that she was misleading her own kind into stealing love rather than sharing it in order to continue exerting her own influence over them the entire time. Naturally, it bites her in the flank — when Thorax and Starlight Glimmer teach the Changelings how to share love, which results in their Heel–Race Turn and permanent Metamorphosis, the Changelings no longer see her as their Queen and turn against her.
  • It's Personal: After her second defeat, Chrysalis quickly develops a deep hatred for Starlight Glimmer.
    • It's worth noting the number of ponies who have handed her a defeat, and who she has vowed to destroy. At present that list includes Celestia, Twilight, Cadance, Shining Armor, Starlight Glimmer and Thorax. She sure is good at making friends...
    Queen Chrysalis: "There is no revenge you could ever conceive of that will come close to what I will exact upon you one day, Starlight Glimmer!"
  • Jerkass: She's sadistic, controlling, vengeful, and evil, even compared to other changelings. She couldn't even hide it when impersonating Princess Cadance, which everyone (sans Twilight) passed over as stress for their wedding.
  • Jerkass Has a Point:
    • The Mane Six and Celestia would've been able to stop her if they had listened to Twilight, as she cruelly points out. This even prompts a Jerkass Realization from Applejack at least.
    • During the Sombra arc in the comics she's really on point, and gives an entirely accurate "Reason You Suck" Speech to most of the cast.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk:
    • In Fiendship Is Magic, she looks utterly broken by her defeats, acts like she's so tired of them that she's seriously considering reforming, and seems to show a surprising level of concern for her subjects. This turns out to be an act, which ends with Chrysalis giving a questionably honest backstory implying she was always pure evil just to twist the knife.
    • In "To Where and Back Again", all of Chysalis' prior motives had a Blue and Orange Morality excuse, she was only looking for a source of love for her Changeling subjects, right? Wrong. Thorax and Starlight Glimmer reveal this to a total lie. Chrysalis couldn't care less about the well being of the Changelings. She was misleading them to steal love all along, when sharing love is what get them fed. The Emotion Eater thing was only to her own benefit and nothing more. This Kick the Dog moment was huge and damaging, as it forces the Changelings to realize they were just being used and they quickly turn on their former queen, rescue their captives and destroy her plans. Cementing this is the fact that Chrysalis is the only Changeling to refuse to turn over a new leaf.
  • Karma Houdini: Escapes unscathed in both My Little Pony: FIENDship is Magic and My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic IDW Issue 34 To 37, and doesn't even carry any regret whatsoever to mitigate this with.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: In "To Where and Back Again": she not only receives another love-powered defeat, but Thorax overthrows her and becomes a Changeling King. While Chrysalis escaped, she's lost her Power Nullifier throne, her entire army, and is now completely alone, destroying most of the threat she formerly had.
  • Kick the Dog: Chrysalis was never confused of being a good guy anytime soon with her callous attitude, but "To Where and Back Again" reveals that Chrysalis couldn't care less about the well-being of her own changeling subjects, as she was only using them for her own selfish goals. The Changelings don't waste time making her pay for it.
  • Kids Are Cruel: According to a line from her Villain Song, she's been dreaming of pulling off a plot like this since she was small.
  • Lady of Black Magic: She's the former queen of the changelings, and has no problem using magic against Princess Celestia.
  • Large and in Charge: The normal changelings are the size the rest of the ponies in the show; she's as a big as Celestia.
  • Large Ham: Par for the course of big-name villains in this show. She even gets a Villain Song in her first appearance!
  • Laser-Guided Karma: She should not have revealed that she was keeping her subjects literally starved for love right in front of said subjects. After Thorax leads by example, Chrysalis ends up losing everything but her life. Not only that, her now former subjects have decided to side with Thorax and are completely willing to fight back if she decided to show her face again.
  • Lean and Mean: Is considerably more spindly than a normal Alicorn.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: This is the main reason she taunts Twilight Sparkle right after she imprisons her in the Canterlot Caves right next to the real Princess Cadance; Chrysalis was hoping for a fight between them. It almost works, but Cadance uses a Trust Password to convince Twilight that she's the real deal.
  • Manipulative Bastard:
    • She gleefully points out in her Villain Song that she fooled everyone.
    • Her backstory in Fiendship Is Magic #5 shows her quite skilled at the art of verbally luring her foes into traps, aided with a bit of Hypnotic Eyes if just to push them in the right direction.
    • Season 6 reveals that she has been deliberately misleading her people to further her own goals, leaving them literally starving for love. This later bites her in the flank when Thorax and Starlight Glimmer make the changelings see through her deceptions.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • A chrysalis is the hard shell that envelops a caterpillar before they become a butterfly and Chrysalis, like all the other changelings, is a bug-like pony creature. On top of that, the fake Cadance is exactly that: the shell that hides her true form. She and her subjects also imprison ponies in giant green cocoons.
    • Her name takes on a darker meaning once it's revealed that her methods were keeping the Changelings from reaching their final form. The race as a whole couldn't move forward until they shed Chrysalis.
  • Morphic Resonance: Even when in a shapeshifted form, she seems to keep the Sickly Green Glow of her magic.
  • Musical Spoiler: Very, very subtle one only a trained ear could catch. The song "B.B.B.B.F. Reprise" ends in a Deceptive Cadence. The moment the song ends, "Cadance" walks over and appears to comfort Twilight before showing her true colors. The original song ends in an Authentic Cadence.
  • Not So Above It All: A throwaway gag in the Friends Forever comics shows that Chrysalis has started a petition to have herself added to a Mount Rushmore-esque sculpture featuring the princesses. She's the only one who's signed it.
  • Not So Different: Starlight Glimmer notes how she and Chrysalis are not all that different in how they tried to rule over their own subjects. Indeed, both of them kept others in line by denying them a part of their true forms and by brutally dealing with any dissenters or traitors. Starlight even offers Chrysalis a redemption at the end, knowing that when she rejected the same offer, terrible things happened. Unfortunately, Chrysalis ended up acting exactly like Starlight in the same situation, rejecting the offer and running off much to Starlight's dismay.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Her reaction to realizing that a Heart Beat-Down is about to hit her head on.
    • Gets this again in the comics once she realizes that Twilight is just as empowered by the comet as she herself is.
    • In the comic story The Siege of the Crystal Empire, she reacts with this when finding out the real plan was to free the Umbrum.
    • In "To Where and Back Again", she has this again when her hive transforming causes her throne to be destroyed, along with the throne room itself. She has a bigger one when she erupts from its ruins, hissing and ready for a fight... only to be faced with all the ponies she captured who have now been freed, including all five Alicorn Princesses, the Elements of Harmony, the Master of Chaos, her freshly redeemed (former) subjects, and the now Changeling King Thorax.
  • Older Than They Look: The Fiendship Is Magic comics reveal she's over a thousand years old. Unlike most other antagonists from back then, though, she seems to have actually lived through all that time.
  • Pet the Dog: In the comics, Queen Chrysalis seems to be on good terms with her changeling subjects, and even shares a laugh with them (albeit at the misfortune of their enemies) now and then. Granted, these are her minions, who delight in preying on others as much as she does... though she's completely willing to dunk a changeling that almost got them all killed into a lava pit. She claims they survived, most likely.
  • Physical God: Notably the first Big Bad level villain to not be a god already, but becomes as powerful as one by the end of her first appearance. The comics indicate her usual level of power is close to Twilight's, which is still rather formidable, and Fiendship Is Magic shows that Celestia defeated Chrysalis is a straight fight at some point in the past.
  • Pity the Kidnapper: In the comics, she kidnaps the Cutie Mark Crusaders in order to lure the Mane Cast into her trap. They proceed to annoy her such she uses that as prompt to get the Mane Cast to hurry because she doesn't know how much more she can take. By the time they reach her, she's near her breaking point.
  • Power Echoes: After assuming her true form, there's a slight echo to her voice in "A Canterlot Wedding." All subsequent speaking roles don't have this.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: In the comics, even she thinks releasing the Umbrum is a bad idea, because they would destroy the emotions changelings feed on.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Played with. Chrysalis mentions that everything she has done is just part of her duty as changeling Queen to feed her people. Still, she enjoys making others suffer and sacking Canterlot far too much. The comics further subvert this trope, revealing that Queen Chrysalis has a vengeful and sadistic streak that has nothing to do with serving her subjects. And "To Where and Back Again" subverts this — she's been deliberately starving her subjects all along; the true way for them to be nourished involves sharing love, whereas the Emotion Eater method has only been to her benefit.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Chrysalis gleefully calls out how gullible the ponies were to her manipulation in "A Canterlot Wedding", that they were all to busy preparing for the event they never noticed what she was planning. She also points out Twilight was the only one who realized something was wrong, and that if they had only listened to her, they wouldn't be in their predicament.
  • Redemption Rejection: At the end of "To Where and Back Again", she's offered the chance to redeem herself by Starlight Glimmer, and share love rather than steal it. Chrysalis briefly considers it, but refuses.
  • The Remnant: She becomes this after being ousted by Thorax and having the rest of the Changelings revolt against her.
  • Revenge:
    • In "To Where and Back Again", she is seeking vengeance on ponykind for her defeat the first time she invaded, with her main targets being the Royal Family and the Mane Six since they were responsible for it. At the end, she vows revenge once more for losing her kingdom, her subjects, and her revenge on the Royal Family and Mane Six after being the only Changeling to refuse redemption, with her new target being Starlight Glimmer, the one responsible for her defeat this time.
    • If you count the comics, Return of Queen Chrysalis was her attempt for said wedding defeat the first time.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: It's her duty to provide food sources for her people, and she single-handedly makes it possible for the changelings to invade Equestria. Ironically, her duty comes back to bite her in the flank when she reveals she has been starving them on purpose for her own schemes.
  • Sadist: While she has some degree of responsibility for her swarm, she clearly gets a kick out of the suffering she causes, to the point of looking at her army attacking Canterlot and stating it's something she's dreamed of (since she was a child, no less).
  • Smug Snake: Like Discord, she zig-zags between this and Magnificent Bastard. Her plan is certainly a good one and she competently carries it out. Still, her impatience and vanity are established early on. She is too distracted by the sight of her victorious forces to care about the heroes she feels are already beaten. She's wrong. She also messes up when she sends Twilight Sparkle to the same caverns where she imprisoned Cadance (allowing the former to rescue the latter). To top that, she retains her arrogant mannerisms even when impersonating Cadance, which is what tips Twilight off in the first place. In the comics, for all of her planning, she didn't bother to consider that Twilight's magic would be powered up by the comet just like her own... or that Twilight's ensuing destructive potential could exceed her own. Happens again in "To Where and Back Again" when she pretty much had planned ahead for her revenge against the Mane Six and Royal Family, and felt that with her Power Nullifier throne keeping them powerless, along with anyone who tried to rescue them, she feels her victory is assured this time, and moves to drain Thorax of all his love energy by force. Thanks to Starlight reminding him of giving it of his own free will, this ends up costing Chrysalis everything but her life, including her throne, the Swarm, her hostages in the Mane Six and the Royal Family, and her revenge.
  • The Sociopath: While she can feed off of love, she herself seems incapable of feeling it and outright admits there's no love in her heart (something she'd also said in her Villain Song). She's also a Manipulative Bitch, impatient, impulsive and narcissistic. The comics further this by showing her destroy entire civilizations and threaten children with amusement, switch between this and a more comedic mood with little provocation, and constantly fail to acknowledge or learn from her mistakes. This ends up costing her everything but her life in the Season 6 finale.
  • This Is Gonna Suck: When she gets into a Beam-O-War with Celestia, she cringes in preparation of being fried, and is just as surprised as everpony else when she wins. Fiendship Is Magic makes this even more justified; she's been on the receiving end of Celestia's beams in the past, which is why she and the other changelings have their holey, melted looking forms.
  • Timed Power-Up: Seems to be how her love drain works as opposed to Tirek's Mana Drain that seems to provide a permanent power boost. While absorbing Shining's love did give her a huge, godly power boost...by the time she met Twilight again, it was already gone, and her power had been reduced to what seems to be her default state (around Twilight's level of strength).
  • Unreliable Expositor: Chrysalis's account of her and her races' origins has the Plot Hole of how she would know what happened before being "born". It's possible the flashback is only experienced by readers (it's the only one without narration) and/or she was lying about their being Made of Evil to mock Twilight Sparkles attempts to reform her.
  • The Vamp: Poor Shining Armor was wrapped around her hoof because of brainwashing. In the comics, devastated the city of Trot at least partially by doing the same to Emperor Incitatus.
  • Vampire Monarch: Queen of a race of Emotion Eaters who specialize in Vampiric Draining.
  • Verbal Tic: When disguised as Cadance, she tends to give an "Ah-huh" when annoyed or unimpressed.
  • Villain Ball:
    • Right after she convinced everypony of Twilight Sparkle's suspicions of "Cadance" was merely her being jealous, her response to Twilight's apologies was to trap her in a cave with the real Cadence and sic them on each other. This proves her evilness and put the two ponies who would wreck her plan back into play, which she could have avoided by making nice to or ignoring Twilight onward.
    • In the comics, Chrysalis forced Twilight to agree to teach her powerful magics by holding her friends hostage, and was about to brainwash her into being genuinely loyal. Too bad she gloated she was going to sic Twilight on her friends during said brainwashing, cue Twilight fighting it off and delivering a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
    • In "To Where and Back Again", Chrysalis has already pretty much won. She has the Mane Six, the Royal Family, and the Master of Chaos as her trophies, cocooned on the ceiling of her throne room, home to her Power Nullifier throne, spies in Canterlot, Ponyville, and the Crystal Empire disguised as said captives, feeding on the love for them from the citizens, captured their ragtag rescue party, and prepares to drain Thorax of his love energy before killing him for treason. She doesn't expect Thorax giving her his love energy of his own free will to lead her Swarm into following suit, resulting in the destruction of her throne, freedom of her hostages, and costing her everything but her very life, including her revenge, which was the main reason for her return in the first place. She does not take this very well.
    • If Chrysalis had actually taken the time to actually try Thorax's example of sharing love, she most likely would've remained Queen of the Changelings. Alas, as per usual Chrysalis chose evil over doing the smart and reasonable thing and branded Thorax a traitor. Thorax returns, Chrysalis is defeated, her revenge plot against the Royal Family and the Mane Six goes up in smoke, and the Changelings turn wise to her deception and side with Thorax. Chrysalis is ousted as the queen and lost everything except her life.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left!: In "To Where and Back Again", when Chrysalis is defeated and Starlight offers her a second chance, she rejects it, swears revenge, and runs away.
  • Villainous Breakdown: In the comics. When being overwhelmed by Twilight Sparkle's comet-enhanced powers, she's reduced to a dazed, stammering wreck who's trying desperately to convince her foe that she's unbeatable. To add insult to injury, she's practically on the verge of defeat, so said argument has been proven invalid by this point.
    • Once she loses her throne, Swarm, hostages in the Mane Six and the Royal Family, and pretty much her revenge against them thanks to Starlight Glimmer and the new Changeling King Thorax, she is livid and swears a new vendetta against Starlight for ruining her revenge plot before making good on her escape.
  • Villainous B.S.O.D.: She doesn't seem to have taken the above well, judging by the insane scrawlings in the castle she was temporarily imprisoned in. Subverted, while Chrysalis is violently focused on Twilight, she hasn't lost her mind at all, and it was an act to manipulate Twilight into letting her and her minions escape.
  • Villain Song: Her half of "This Day Aria" is her gloating about the imminent success of her Evil Plan and how she cares nothing for "her" groom. There's a Dark Reprise later focusing on her true motives.
  • Virtue Is Weakness: As mentioned with Blue and Orange Morality above, she laughs at the idea of actually loving someone.
  • Voice of the Legion: In her first appearance her voice was underscored by a subtle, insectoid buzzing. However, this was removed in all subsequent appearances.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Like all changelings, but she comes with a dramatic Transformation Sequence.
  • We Can Rule Together: Tries to pull this on Twilight in the comics. It doesn't work. It should be noted that Chrysalis planned to drain Twilight's love to make her a willing servant, which is more thought-out than most instances of the trope.
  • We Will Meet Again: After her defeat in "To Where and Back Again", Chrysalis flees into the desert, vowing to one day come back to exact her vengeance on Starlight for ruining her original revenge plot against the Mane Six and the Royal Family for her defeat at the Royal Wedding.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In the comics, she makes it very clear that once she doesn't need the Cutie Mark Crusaders anymore, she does NOT plan on letting them go...
    • Her return to the show in the season 6 finale has her and the Changelings kidnap Spike and Flurry Heart, both of whom are just babies to their respected races.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: While most of her plan was likely formulated from the get go, she's able to work things she didn't expect (such as Twilight catching on and accusing her) into it and twist them to her advantage (use a Wounded Gazelle Gambit to turn everyone against Twilight in a single move).
  • 0% Approval Rating: In the Season Six finale, Queen Chrysalis is abandoned by her subjects after learning from Thorax that they don't need to steal love anymore, and are no longer hungry. Once adored by her subjects, Chrysalis promptly becomes their enemy when King Thorax takes over.

    King Sombra 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mlp_resource__king_sombra_01_by_zutheskunk-_837.png
King Sombra in his pony form.
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/king_sombra__s_shadow_by_fercho262-d5kfka0_5042.png
King Sombra in his shadow form.
"My Crystal slaves..."

Voiced by: Jim Millernote 

A snarling, black-hearted unicorn king who ruled over the Crystal Empire and enslaved its inhabitants long ago. Celestia and Luna banished him and turned him into a living shadow, but not before he hid the Crystal Heart that protected the empire and caused it to vanish with him. After a thousand years, Sombra returns with plans to continue what he started.

The Loose Canon comics go in-depth about Sombra's origins. He is not a real pony, but a "shadow pony" created by the Umbrum forces to infiltrate and conquer the Crystal Empire. He was adopted by the Crystal ponies with no memory of his true self and lived an otherwise normal life until he uncovered his origins and went insane, becoming the king of monsters he is feared as in present times. The arc "The Siege of the Crystal Empire" concerned his revival and saw him purified of his shadow powers, transforming him into a normal pony for a second chance at a normal life.

  • 0% Approval Rating: As the lengths he goes to maintain control of the Crystal Empire condemns its inhabitants to a life of neverending misery and he makes them unable to remember anything about life before his reign, yeah that's inevitable.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Sombra was still evil in the comics, but only because he was mistreated by his peers and manipulated by his mother, and in the end he gets a second chance at life as a normal pony. In the actual show, however, he was pure evil Generic Doomsday Villain who showed absolutely no signs of any sympathetic or redeeming traits.
  • Advancing Wall of Doom: He is one in "The Crystal Empire", continuously advancing towards the empire he once ruled.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: According to Fiendship Is Magic #1, before Sombra learned who he really was, he was just a quiet orphan colt who wasn't very good at talking, and so he got constantly picked on by all of the other foals in the orphanage.
  • Almighty Idiot: His shadow form, while very huge, powerful, fluid, and able to spread with only a single fragment of his horn, is only capable of speaking short sentences and phrases and charging forward, in contrast to the highly-prepared sorcerer he once was. But still downplayed in that he still shows signs of It Can Think — e.g., singling out Shining Armor for some Power Nullifier crystals, waiting for Cadance to run out of stamina, activating his final trap once Twilight's presence signals him, etc.
  • And I Must Scream: Been on both ends of it. Celestia and Luna inflicted this upon him by turning him to living shadow and sealing him in ice for a thousand years. This was because his reign over the Crystal Ponies amounted to this for the poor things. Though Fiendship Is Magic reveals that the living shadow is actually his true form.
  • Animalistic Abomination: He's a writhing mass of animate shadow, Black Magic and hatred that happens to assume a partially equine form on occasion. According to his back-story comic, he's an offshoot of an entire race of similar Eldritch Abominations called the Umbrum that was sculpted into a pony shape to eventually subvert the Crystal Empire from within.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: While not a literal example like Discord, both his role in the episode and McCarthy's description of the character make him out as more of a living embodiment of Fear rather than a pony. Fiendship Is Magic takes this to the logical conclusion by depicting him as a pony born of darkness and shadow for the purpose of destroying the Empire.
  • Anti-Antichrist: Despite being the Umbrum's Chosen One and Heavy, he's always despised his (not-)inevitable role, only finally embracing it out of a completely bitter and broken You Can't Fight Fate mindset. At least until IDW #37, where he ends up outright invoking Screw Destiny and betraying the Umbrum, consequently getting a long-sought-after Redemption Earns Life fate alongside his Morality Pet, Radiant Hope.
  • Anti-Villain: His Adaptational Heroism self in the comics. Yes, he's utterly ruthless toward his enemies, but mostly due to his upbringing that ultimately drove him to invoke Then Let Me Be Evil — and even then, he still has some Even Evil Has Standards moments. He even invokes Heel–Face Turn in the end.
  • The Arch Mage: Not a lot of backstory, but he seems to be this considering the traps he set up.
  • Arc Villain: Of the third season premiere.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: He's so powerful that he ruled the Crystal Empire with an iron hoof because the Crystal Ponies were too terrified of him to challenge his reign.
  • Back from the Dead: In the comics, he's restored to life during the Siege of the Crystal Empire arc.
  • Bad Powers, Bad People: He uses dark unicorn magic powered by hatred and fear. To no one's surprise, he's an Evil Overlord. A major part of his characterization in the comics, where he invokes this. He's literally Made of Evil, so being a bad person is pretty much the only option for him.
  • Black Magic: His magic generates black crystals and is powered by hatred and fear.
  • Break the Cutie: His backstory, according to the comic focusing on him. He grew up unwanted in the Crystal Orphanage, constantly passed over by potential parents, bullied by all of the other foals at the orphanage, plagued by visions of his becoming an evil monster, painfully paralysed every year on the Crystal Faire, and finally had his only friend become a princess-candidate, which he realised meant his prophecy was likely to come true as well. When he finally learned where he came from, he just... snapped.
  • The Caligula: Arguably a worse one than Discord since this means his subjects are always completely sane so they remember all of it, and he doesn't even allow them to remember life before his reign.
  • Casting a Shadow: He was turned to shadow by Celestia and Luna so now he takes the form of a giant, amorphous shadow being. The comic's origins reveal that it's not so much that the sisters turned him into a shadow-form as that they reverted him back into one.
  • The Chessmaster: The steps he took to keep the Crystal Heart from being found in the first place imply that he considered ponies of all races to be able to find it. In fact, most of the threat that he poses is a result of his actions before the episode even started.
  • Cold Ham: Despite his minor screentime and lines and his seriousness, his dragon-like roars and Evil Laugh still give him some flair. And just look at his Red and Black and Evil All Over motif. Very apparent in his comic book appearances, where rage is pretty much the only emotion he can reliably express. Normally he's pretty morose, delivering hammy lines with little real enthusiasm.
  • Combat Pragmatist: While still one of the strongest villains, what makes him uniquely dangerous is that he nonetheless takes no chances with his enemies, simply attacking them with little-to-no talking and being Crazy-Prepared with various curses and traps just in case. Additionally, in Siege of the Crystal Empire, he unhesitantly takes advantage of Radiant Hope's distraction in order to turn Celestia and Luna to stone via his Transformation Ray.
  • Cool Crown: He is a king, after all, so it's only natural he has one.
  • The Corruption: Contact with him sealed Shining Armor's magic. Later, when a fragment of his own horn is cut off and lands inside the barrier, he uses it to spread a plague of dark crystals over the Crystal Empire despite being unable to enter himself. The sole purpose of his dark magic seems to be corrupting and controlling the crystals of the Crystal Empire.
  • Crazy-Prepared: He nearly won due to the preparations he took before he was beaten the first time.
    • He hid away the Crystal Heart, which was required to defeat him, and erased all the Crystal Ponies' knowledge of it having ever existed at all. While not outright stated to be his doing, the last page of the Crystal Empire history book Twilight finds (which told what the Crystal Heart was) was also torn out.
    • The trap he laid at the bottom of the staircase of his throne room shows ponies an illusion of their greatest fear, meaning had Spike not gone with Twilight, she would have been frozen by the illusion and he would have won. This was on top of the fact he put the Crystal Heart in his castle because he was The Dreaded, meaning the Crystal Ponies would be too terrified of him to even try looking for it there. Then hid the entrance to the chamber so that the only way to open it was to be able to use his magic (dark magic that, presumably, a truly incorruptible hero would be unable or unwilling to use). And finally, stepping on the platform allows him to trigger a spell, beginning to spread his dark crystals inside the castle and trapping whoever got that far at the top of the tower unable to use the Heart. Not to mention the anti-teleport spell he cast on the trap, so that even a powerful magician cannot leave so easily.
  • Creator Cameo: His few lines and other noises were provided by storyboard supervisor "Big" Jim Miller.
  • Cultured Badass: He's quite the avid reader according to the comics.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Played with. Turning him into living darkness was Celestia and Luna's doing, though whether he's more powerful in this form than in his true form is anyone's guess. On one hand, he's less of a flesh-and-blood pony and more of a manevolent force of nature which makes him much harder to fight directly. On the other hand, he's little more than a beast in shadow form while his Crazy-Prepared status suggests he was far more intelligent before. However, with Fiendship Is Magic revealing he's a splinter/agent of the Umbrum, he wasn't so much changed into a living shadow as that the shadow is his true form, and Celestia and Luna merely reverted him back to it after he spent so much time disguised as a unicorn.
  • Dark Is Evil: He's a dark shadow cloud and The Dreaded.
  • The Dark Times: His rule over the Crystal Ponies, as explained by Celestia, is outright slavery (see his above quote). Even after being freed, the Crystal Ponies shudder in fear at the memory of his rule.
  • Death by Irony: Obliterated by his former slave race.
  • Death Cry Echo: Instead of the Big "NO!" previous villains were accustomed to using.
  • Death Glare: He has one so terrifying that the Crystal Ponies shudder just thinking about it.
  • Demoted to Dragon: In IDW Comics, where he's ultimately just a pawn of his mother Rabia.
  • Despotism Justifies the Means: Unlike Discord, he sees his victims as slaves instead of playthings and goes to great lengths to maintain control of the Crystal Empire and keep the Crystal Ponies under his hoof through fear and dark magic.
  • The Dreaded: The Crystal Ponies don't want to remember his rule, and shudder in fear at the thought of it. This is why he hid the Crystal Heart in his palace; he knew they'd be too afraid of him to look for it there.
  • The Emperor: In the comics, following his conquest of the Empire and beginning his conquest of Equestria, he prefers to be styled "Emperor" Sombra.
  • Ermine Cape Effect: When he was in his physical form, he wore a red ermine-trimmed cape.
  • Evil Counterpart: To the Crystal Heart (and thus Cadance). He's a being of shadow whose magic is fueled by The Power of Hate and fear while the Crystal Heart is powered by the light, love, and hope of the Crystal Empire.
  • Evil Makes You Monstrous: He has a sharp, curved, red horn that looks like a dagger, slitted pupils, green and red eyes with shadows wafting from them, fangs, and an etherial black mane. In the comics, he originally had green eyes with a normal horn and mane and no fangs, and took on this corrupted form when a red crystal awakened his Umbrum powers. Following his reformation when his powers are purified, he looks normal again.
  • Evil Overlord: This is what he was before Celestia and Luna overthrew him; a tyrannical slavemaster of the Crystal Empire.
  • Evil Plan: He was banished from his domain and he's back to reclaim it and re-enslave the Crystal Ponies.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Has extremely powerful black magic.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: The few times he speaks it is like this. (Unlike Discord, this is played completely straight.)
  • Evil Tastes Good: Licks his lips in anticipation of whatever he intended to do to Spike when he caught him.
  • Evil Tower of Ominousness: Used his powers to convert the Crystal Castle into this during the peak of his villainy, and it remains his best weapon during his Present Absence, courtesy of some tricky Pocket Dimension effects and Black Magic traps that he preemptively rigged it with.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: He is shattered to pieces. Even more shocking is if one looks closely, some parts of him hadn't turned to crystal. It's particularly noticeable in that he's the only villain aside from the Windigos to actually be destroyed and unlike with other villains of the show, nothing is said to imply that he's not dead, so we can assume he's Killed Off for Real. You can even see his severed horn flying toward the screen! Word of God confirms that he is dead.
  • Fangs Are Evil: Even creepier because this guy is supposed to be a unicorn.
  • Fisher King: Under the influence of his dark magic, the sky turns dark and all the shiny crystals in the Empire turn jet black. In addition, his reign causes fear and hatred to resonate throughout all of Equestria, amplified by his dark crystals.
  • Flat Character: At first, his characterization is nonexistent, especially in comparison to the show's other villains, and there is barely any backstory for him to speak of. But more then that, he doesn't have any meaningful interaction with the other characters! The Fiendship Is Magic comic book centered around him rectifies this problem, however.
  • Foil:
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: The Phlegmatic among the major villains of the series.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: While the other major antagonists were some form of non-pony monster, or in the case of Nightmare Moon, a corrupted alicorn, King Sombra is a normal unicorn stallion. However, his power was so great that he became one of the greatest threats Equestria had seen, ranking among the aforementioned monsters. According to the comics, he was actually created by a race of Eldritch Abominations called the Umbrum to set them free, so he was technically a Nightmare all along — but he grew up as an orphan foal unaware of his true nature, so this trope is still played straight.
  • Gemstone Assault: One of his powers is to create jagged, dark crystals.
  • Gender Bender: "The Siege of the Crystal Empire" arc reveals (though it may be a typo) that Sombra used to be female back when he was an Umbrum. Most tropes related to this don't apply to him, though, since he clearly doesn't remember his life as an Umbrum back when he was young.
  • Generic Doomsday Villain:
    • He is built up as being a huge threat to the Crystal Empire, and is also revealed to have set up an intricate security system to prevent anypony from getting the Crystal Heart in the past, but other than that, his characterization is nonexistent, especially in comparison to the show's other villains, and there is barely any backstory for him to speak of. This isn't helped by him speaking very little and not having any meaningful interaction with the other characters and spends most of the two-parter as more of a wave of blackness rather than an actual character. The show treats him more like a powerful malevolent force than a character in his own right. According to Word of God, he was intended to be more of a menacing and terrifying presence lurking over everything. In other words, fear itself.
    • "The Cutie Re-Mark — Part 1" builds on this a bit by showing a Bad Future where the Mane Six weren't around to stop his return, but this story that explicitly ranks the danger levels of the show's major villains still puts him at the very bottom... though only in the sense that his is the most "normal" world. In Sombra's future, Equestria is slowly being bled dry as Sombra's legions of slave warriors push on to conquer it as he conquered the Crystal Empire — in contrast, Nightmare Moon has placed Equestria under The Night That Never Ends and is implied to be slowly going insane, Chrysalis has enslaved all ponies to use as food and forced the survivors to flee into the Everfree Forest, Discord has turned the world into Cloudcuckooland and Tirek is just laying waste to everything. The only other villains with a similarly vanilla Bad Future are the Flim-Flam Brothers, who've turned Equestria into a polluted, over-industrialized wasteland.
  • Genius Bruiser: Is a Crazy-Prepared No-Nonsense Nemesis who's practically a living World-Wrecking Wave.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: His eyes glow green and are trailed by a purple aura.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors: His crystals are colored black in contrast to the technicolor crystals found in the empire.
  • Good Hurts Evil: Can be repelled by Cadance's shield of light and love, and contact with it cuts him like a blade. By contrast, normal ponies are completely unaffected by contact, so that may have been a side effect of his shadow form. Also, the Crystal Heart prevented him from ever going to the Crystal Faire when he was younger every time it was held, keeping paralyzed with pain whenever it was held. In the end, the Crystal Heart powered up by the combined light and love of the Empire obliterates him.
  • Go Out with a Smile: Attempts this in IDW #37 after his Heel–Face Turn, believing the Crystal Heart should finally finish him off for all his past crimes and relieved that not only are Hope and the rest of Equestria safe from his kind, but he also finally got to achieve his childhood dream of seeing the Crystal Faire up close. However, the Princesses, seeing his change as genuine, combine their magic to restore him as a normal Unicorn and give him a second chance.
  • Guttural Growler: He doesn't speak much aside from growls and snarls.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Does so the end of "The Siege of the Crystal Empire" arc in the comics, after realizing he's become the monster he saw in the Crystal Heart from a thousand years prior.
  • Hellish Pupils: He has rhombus-shaped pupils, and instead of being black, his are red.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • Tries to reach Spike and the Crystal Heart by launching into the air on a crystal pillar, reverting back to his pony form in the process (either from regaining strength or simply being close to the Crystal Heart). This leaves him standing on said pillar, several hundred feet in the air without his far more agile Living Shadow form, giving him no way to escape the Crystal Heart's energy wave.
    • Being so horrible to the Crystal Ponies makes it worse. It's why they had no qualms about killing him when the opportunity presented itself.
  • Hulk Speak: Seems to have been a side effect of his long imprisonment or his smoke monster transformation, the comics imply he was once capable of complete speech.
  • Hulking Out: Is heavily implied by the comics to be far stronger post-escape — as reinforced by his Empire-wide size now in contrast to his Discord-high size then — likely making his Hulk Speak part of this.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Just look at his Pony form. Does that look like any natural Unicorn to you? note  This is eventually turned on its head in the comics: He's actually the Reincarnation of a full-on Eldritch Abomination from a Prison Dimension, and it's his Living Shadow form that's considered "true." At least until his eventual Mortality Ensues (see below), that is.
  • Implacable Man: Celestia, Luna, Shining, and Cadance can only delay him without the Heart. Even that doesn't destroy him for good, though, and his spirit eventually reforms.
  • Karmic Death: Given his viciousness and the sheer scale of his intended atrocities, it's fitting that he's the only antagonist thus far to die. Violently at that. Its later revealed in his origin comic that he turned the previous ruler into crystal and shattered her, making his demise all the more karmic.
  • Killed Off for Real: Meghan McCarthy confirmed at Unicon 2013, making him the only character to actually die on the show. However, the comics and some merchandise leave it ambiguious, and in the comics his spirit lived on inside his horn. The Siege of the Crystal Empire arc concerns his return when Hope uses her magic to restore him, and he implies in said arc he could have returned on his own without Hope's help; it would have years for him to regenerate to the point he could assume a physical form again, but he would have gotten to that point eventually.
  • Large and in Charge: His shadow form's full self is massive, surrounding the entire Crystal Empire, and his pony form is about the same size as Celestia.
  • Leitmotif: Has a pretty ominous one. It definitely serves to give what screen time he has a good deal of impact.
  • Living Shadow: His fate when the Princesses stand up to him.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: What happens to him upon his defeat. Fiendship Is Magic seems to imply that he survived, though, as his horn rolls down the stairs into a grinning shadow that looks like him.
  • Man of Kryptonite: Can spawn Power Nullifier crystals at will.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • "Sombra" means "shadow" in Spanish, Portuguese, and Galician. It becomes even more meaningful when the Princesses turn him into a Living Shadow when overthrowing him.
    • It also sounds like "Somber", which makes no small amount of sense. The comics reinforce this interpretation, where bar a few moments of triumph and satisfaction, he's mostly miserable and depressed about his fate.
  • Mighty Glacier: Is seemingly almost as powerful as Discord and a post-absorption Tirek, and his shadow form can get at least large enough to surround an entire kingdom. However, he also moves like an Advancing Wall of Doom, and it seemingly takes him a while to be able to react properly to anything that catches him off-guard — thus, he excels at things like Crazy-Prepared-ness and Long Games to compensate. His pony form in the comics is similar. He's often quite slow to react to events, but tends to One-Hit KO whomever he actually does hit.
  • Mind Rape:
    • Did this to the Crystal Ponies. Not only are they incapable of remembering anything before his rule, they're left in a perpetual state of unhappiness and despair. The former is implied to be psychic, but the latter might be mundane, considering his treatment of them.
    • He also booby-trapped the door to the Crystal Heart to do this to whoever tried to enter it.
  • Mortality Ensues: After his Heel–Face Turn at the end of "Siege of the Crystal Empire", all the Princesses combine their magic to transform him into a normal Unicorn so the Crystal Heart can no longer harm him.
  • Mysterious Past: Absolutely nothing about his backstory or the reasons behind his great power in pony form is remotely hinted at. The Fiendship Is Magic comic reveals that he was found on the edge of the Empire, repeating the word "Sombra". Even he didn't know where he'd came from, for many years, until he finally found out that he was created by the Umbrum to set them free.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: As listed above, his name is one, but the Fiendship Is Magic comic adds what's presumably one of his monikers: "The King of All Monsters".
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: The former ruler of the Crystal Empire, Princess Amore, knew all along what Sombra really was but also believed he could be convinced to not take that path, as he had the potential for good in him. She then proceeded to do... absolutely freaking nothing with that information, instead leaving him to suffer in ignorance until, eventually, he was driven to embrace his "destiny" and become a monster. Way to go there, princess!
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: His mother Rabia demoting him to dragon and being openly evil results in him being even less proactive and invested in his goals than normal. He clearly understands that Cadance and Twilight are leading them into a trap, but after Rabia dismisses his concerns he proceeds to just follow along passively. He even seems to welcome his inevitable death once the trap is sprung.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis:
  • Not Quite Dead: The comics reveal his spirit lives on inside the remnant of his horn. The Siege of the Crystal Empire arc concerns his full revival.
  • Oh, Crap!: He has this reaction to realizing the Crystal Heart is being powered up.
    King Sombra: No... No! Stop!
  • One-Man Army: Lacks Mooks, but compensates with size, power, and Crazy-Prepared-ness.
    • However, he does use an actual army in his Season 5 Bad Future — though out of pragmatism than any weakness (he still easily defends himself via Great Wall of China-sized Gemstone Assault against a group of Royal Guards).
  • Orcus on His Throne:
    • Straddles the line. He is one to be feared, there is no question about that, and his villainy is documented from a millenia before. However, the present-day threat he presents is more of a looming evil than an active one. For the entire two-part episode he's in, for the most part, he sits outside the barrier of the Crystal Empire and waits for the magic to weaken in order to breach it. This is actually justified as the barrier can easily injure him while he's still in his shadow form.
    • Averted in his Bad Future cameo in "The Cutie Re-Mark – Part 1" — he fights alongside his brainwashed soldiers.
    • He's originally very proactive after his resurrection in the comics, but after he achieves his goals, frees the Umbrum and is rejected by Radiant Heart he is shown simply slumped upon his throne while others make decisions for him. He briefly objects when his mother takes hold of the Villain Ball, but remains otherwise passive and uncaring.
  • Physical God: He appears to be a unicorn in the show; an unusual one but still a unicorn and not an Alicorn. However, he accomplishes feats of magic that are god-like in description. Anypony who can single-hoofedly enslave a whole kingdom — then curse it all the way through space and time, no less — and warrant a double-team by Celestia and Luna is surely this. The IDW comics reveal that he's actually the Reincarnation of a full-on Eldritch Abomination so he basically is a god. Part of his Heel–Face Turn involved being Brought Down to Normal so he could be a true unicorn instead of a shadow one, so he's definitely no longer this.
  • Power Echoes: When he talks, he has this effect on his voice.
  • Power Nullifier: He seals Shining Armor's magic during their encounter, which keeps Shining from using his shield spell to help to keep him out. And his last trap is an Anti-Magic Crystal Prison that prevents Twilight from just teleporting away with the Crystal Heart.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Despite the Heart being his Achilles' Heel, it's highly hinted he didn't just smash it — instead hiding it via all those traps — because he wants to turn it from The Power of Love to The Power of Hate. "The Crystalling" reveals yet another reason that keeping it intact was beneficial to him: without it, he would've lost both his base of operations and his Slave Race to eternal winter.
  • Present Absence: Despite his minor screentime, his Black Magic effects and traps still let him pose a major threat.
  • The Power of Hate: According to Celestia, his magic is based off of fear and hatred. This is pretty much the only thing sustaining him in the comics. Normally he's fairly depressed and miserable, with his only displays of emotion being rage when his enemies move against him, and occasional grim satisfaction when he gets revenge on those who have hurt him.
  • Race Against the Clock: The only thing keeping him out of the Crystal Empire is Cadance's love spell, which is slowly failing. The moment the shield goes down, we get to see exactly why it was so important to keep him out. He starts covering the Crystal Empire in his dark crystals in seconds.
  • Reality Warper: He once turned the whole Crystal Empire into a Mordor (and starts to do so again in the present), he made it completely vanish for over an entire millennium, and the layout of his heavily Booby Trapped path to the Crystal Heart shows that he can even create Pocket Dimensions.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: His color scheme in pony form.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: A literal case, as simply remembering his eyes causes one of the Crystal Ponies to shudder. When he's enraged, the red overlaps the green, turning his entire iris and pupil red.
  • Satanic Archetype: His initial takeover of the Crystal Empire (stated to be Equestria's Cosmic Keystone kingdom) was similar to Lucifer's first rebellion in Heaven from Paradise Lost; his subsequent exile (to be sealed underground in ice) reflected the deepest part of Hell from The Divine Comedy; and his Taking You with Me curse upon the Empire reflected Lucifer/Satan's Revenge by Proxy introduction of sin among humanity, and his fearful and depressing Present Absence over the Crystal Ponies was similar to how Satan is described as "prowl{ing} about like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour", both examples being in The Bible.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Was turned into a Living Shadow and imprisoned in the northern ice by Celestia and Luna. They were at least more thorough than with Discord.
  • Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: According to Fiendship Is Magic, his fate is one. He took over the Crystal Empire because he had a persistent vision that it was his destiny, and never really given any indication that he was wrong to think that You Can't Fight Fate. Eventually Radiant Heart points out that the same vision had her as a Princess... which never came true, as she ended up rejecting that destiny. This convinces Sombra that he can do the same, and he accepts his destruction with a smile. (Which actually ends up as Redemption Equals Life.)
  • Scary Black Man: A large, dark stallion whose I Know What You Fear powers make the "Scary" part literal. He's also The Silent Bob, complete with a Badass Baritone whenever he does speak.
  • The Silent Bob: A break of tradition from every other villain from before, he surprisingly speaks very little, mainly growling like a monster. At one point during the comics he notes that Queen Chrysalis Talks Too Much.
  • Slasher Smile: His default expression.
  • Slave Race: What he turned the Crystal Ponies into. He even calls them his "Crystal slaves" at one point.
  • Sorcerous Overlord: The traps that he set imply that he used to be a mighty sorcerer when he was still the Emperor.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Word of God has confirmed the spelling to be "Sombra" (matching the in-show pronunciation), yet a tweet by Hasbro's My Little Pony Twitter spells it as "Somber" (which proves to be a Meaningful Name in its own right, as "somber" means "unhappy" — much like the Crystal Ponies affected by his spell). Both words ultimately derive from the Latin word "umbra", meaning "shadow".
  • Supernatural Is Purple: His eyes are constantly trailed by a purple aura.
  • Taking You with Me: As he was being sealed, he cursed the Crystal Empire to disappear for 1000 years.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: He actually Used to Be a Sweet Child, but an apparent confirmation that You Can't Fight Fate and, in all honesty, little reason to remain on the side of good provoked him into embracing his nature as the Umbrum's avatar.
  • The Usurper: While the show has never stated how he came to power, Fiendship Is Magic #1 shows him to be this: he took over the Empire after turning its previous ruler, Princess Amore, to crystal and shattering her.
  • Tin Tyrant: He wears metal armor in his unicorn form.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: The moment he learned he was not truly a pony, but a shadow monster.
  • Trap Master: The sheer number of traps he set qualify him for this.
  • Uniformity Exception: He has no cutie mark. Per Fiendship Is Magic #1, though created as a pony, he could never get a cutie mark since he was a shadow pony.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: In Fiendship is Magic he's shown to have been a very quiet and meek colt.
  • Walking Wasteland: Can spread shadows and dark crystals to affect the land around him.
  • Was Once a Man: Inverted: his backstory comic has him learn that he was always a shadow monster, he was just stripped of that knowledge and forced into the shape of a unicorn to serve as The Mole. His later transformation into a shadow was just him reverting to his true form.
  • Wicked Cultured: In the comics, he's revealed to have quite the collection of books and artifacts hidden away in a Pocket Dimension-like private chamber.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Amazingly, despite his pretty-much pure evil incarnate depiction in the cartoon, the comic of his back story makes him out as this. Just a sweet, shy little orphan colt with no idea of where he comes from, bullied by everyone save for his one friend, and never adopted. Then he discovers the truth of his origins and it breaks him; he decides "Then Let Me Be Evil" and embraces his destiny as the dark conqueror of the ponies he once wanted to be friends with.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He has no problem trying to attack (and possibly kill) Princess Cadance when she and Spike have the Crystal Heart. He also turned Princess Amore to crystal and shattered her in the past.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Tries to attack (and possibly kill) Spike with absolutely no hesitation once he sees he has the Crystal Heart. He even licks his lips at the prospect of doing so.
  • Xanatos Gambit: His booby-traps to prevent ponies from reaching the Crystal Heart. They keep them out? Good, the one thing that can stop him is out of reach. They reach it? It sets off a trap allowing him to begin growing his dark crystals inside the castle itself, even if he himself can't enter, as well as trapping the pony who found it. Cadance invokes Deflector Shield? He waits until she's too tired to continue. She stops to rest? He reaches the Empire sooner. Heck, he did one in his first (flashback) scene: If he beat Celestia and Luna, good; but if they beat him, his curse took the Empire with him.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: The biggest reason he became a monster? Because the Crystal Heart showed him a vision that he would become one.
  • You Monster!: Celestia refers to him as having a "heart as black as night." Radiant Hope also says as much when he shatters Princess Amore into pieces.
  • Your Size May Vary: He is taller in "The Cutie Re-Mark" than he is in "The Crystal Empire", although that could just be because of the camera angle.

    Lord Tirek 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/64cddc790a95f0e1453c78e74a536910.png
"How does it feel, knowing that soon every pegasus, unicorn and earth pony will bow to my will?"
"I am Lord Tirek. And I will take what should have been mine long ago."

Voiced by: Mark Acheson

Long ago, Tirek and his brother Scorpan came to Equestria with the intent to steal the magic of every pony and Take Over the World. Scorpan however learned friendship from Star Swirl the Bearded, and helped the ponies seal Tirek in Tartarus. However, when Cerberus left Tartarus undefended, Tirek broke free, and is now ready to pick up where he left off.

Extended Universe comic My Little Pony: FIENDship is Magic #2 explains that of his centaur race, a young Tirek possessed even more magical ability than his father King Vorak. Already thirsty for power, his goals turned towards Equestria after seeing the power that unicorn ponies possessed when hermit Sendak the Elder returned from his travels with an abducted unicorn. The comic shows that Tirek's mother, Queen Haydon is a gargoyle like his brother Scorpan, and that Discord was a member of Vorak's council, explaining their previous familiarity.

For tropes applying to his G1 counterpart, see My Little Pony TV Specials.

  • 0% Approval Rating: Backstabbing the only being on his side will do that. Not that he cares; he seems to like earning the hate of every victim he thinks is powerless to stop him.
  • Adaptational Badass: The G1 Tirek was no pushover, but his main threat came from his army, which he created with the Rainbow of Darkness. This time around, Tirek is an army unto himself.
  • A God I Am: While the show doesn't directly state it, this is more or less what his plan amounts to. In a world where ponies need magic to control the forces of nature, Tirek draining them would give him control over the rise and fall of the sun and moon, allow him to manipulate weather freely, and he'd be the only creature able to grow the crops the ponies need to feed themselves. Given he drains Discord as well, he might also gain Reality Warper powers.
  • All Your Powers Combined: He eventually absorbs the powers of hundreds of earth ponies, unicorns, and pegasi, giving him super-strength, the ability to fire beams of magic, and he can fly. It isn't shown what further power he got from Discord.
  • Amulet of Concentrated Awesome: He wears a golden pendant around his neck, which he grants to Discord. Subverted when he tells Discord it was a gift from his brother and is worthless to him, and the amulet holds no power. Double subverted when Discord gives it to Twilight when she frees him, and it becomes the sixth key to the chest from the Tree of Harmony.
  • And I Must Scream: While not explicitly stated, if what's shown is accurate, he's spent over one thousand years trapped in one place in Tartarus, unable to escape or do anything and fully aware. Not to say he didn't deserve it.
  • Arc Villain: Of the Season 4 finale. However, foreshadowing of his appearance goes back all the way to Season 2, and along the way since there's been a lot of build-up for why Twilight became an alicorn.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: At full strength he's almost as big as an Ursa Major.
  • Badass Baritone: The stronger he becomes, the deeper his voice gets.
  • Badass Beard: As he gets stronger, he sports a damn cool one.
  • Bad Vibrations: When he becomes massive enough, his steps shake the earth as he walks.
  • Beard of Evil: A long white one to be exact.
  • Big Red Devil: Is a massive centaur with red skin and large horns.
  • Black Eyes of Crazy: He has a pair of these, and they come with pupil-less glowing yellow irises.
  • The Brute: Though he's more than capable of using his head, mostly he prefers to strong-arm his victims. After he drains Discord's chaos magic, he barely uses it, instead almost entirely using sheer physical force against Twilight during their clash. And once he has the Alicorns' magic, he simply rampages around, destroying the landscape, simply because he can.
  • Cain and Abel: He's the Cain to Scorpan's Abel.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: It was implied that the Pony of Shadows seen in "Castle Mane-ia" was Tirek.
  • The Chessmaster: An enemy too strong to drain that could lock him back up in a heartbeat? Convinces him to join his side, then disposes of him once he has become powerful enough to drain him. The last alicorn between him and the power he needs to rule the world? He makes sure to have bartering chips in reserve in case of a stalemate.
  • Composite Character: While he shares his appearance, deep booming voice, general frightening presence, and many personality traits with G1 Tirek, his plan is similar to G1 Lavan, and his powers to Arabus.
  • The Corrupter: He convinces Discord to turn on the ponies and help him drain their power, telling him that in becoming their friend he's suppressing his true nature and is just imprisoned in a different manner for it.
  • Decomposite Character: His original goal is given to Nightmare Moon.
  • Despotism Justifies the Means: His 'everypony will bow to my will' comment implies Tirek's ultimate goal is a world were he has all the power and everyone else has none.
  • Didn't See That Coming: As a consequence of his long imprisonment, Tirek isn't fully up to date on current events. (For example, he's surprised to learn that there is a fourth alicorn princess.) Because of this, he is repeatedly blindsided by this trope, but usually proves very good at rolling with the punches. However, in the end, it catches up with him when he doesn't realize the Mane Six still have a trump card left in the form of the Harmony Box.
  • Did You Just Scam Cthulhu?: He successfully got Discord to his side by promising to let him go back to the way he was. Note that he was barely powerful enough to do anything at this point, and Discord had just defeated him in about ten seconds flat. Once he gets strong enough, he takes Discord's power too.
  • Dragged Off to Hell: Was imprisoned in Tartarus for his crimes until he escapes. He's ultimately dragged back in the end.
  • The Dreaded: Everyone is terrified of him. Upon having a prophetic dream of his return, the next thing Celestia does is call in the other Princesses, explain to them what's going on, and sic Discord on him before he gains any more power.
  • Escaped from Hell: Quite literally in a classic mythological sense, as he manages to escape Tartarus.
  • Establishing Character Moment: He walks up to a unicorn in an alleyway during the dead of night, introduces himself as "no friend" in the creepiest voice imaginable, and drains the hapless unicorn of his magic.
  • Evil Is Burning Hot: Tirek's magic is fire-based, or at least gives off the impression of being fiery.
  • Evil Counterpart: In a sense, he and his brother, Scorpan, are ones to the Royal Pony sisters. They originally came to Equestria to conquer it, but Scorpan befriended the ponies, changed sides and tried to convince Tirek to do the same. When Tirek refused to do so, Scorpan had no choice but to imprison him. Not to mention that Tirek is a mash-up of two mythological creatures (A centaur with minotaur-like features such as bull horns and cloven hooves), and both are very good Chess Masters to an extent. At the same time though, Tirek has a demonic appearance which contrasts with Celestia's angelic one. He and Scorpan are shown to be princes in Fiendship Is Magic, making them even more this.
  • Eviler Than Thou: He pulls this on Discord after convincing him to pull a Face–Heel Turn, only using him to regain his lost strength before telling him You Have Outlived Your Usefulness.
  • Evil Is Hammy: "WHERRRRRRE IS YOUR MAGIIIIIIC?!?"
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: The main reason he gets as powerful as he does as quickly as he does is because Discord uses his own powers to hand him Equestria on a platter. Celestia even mentions the only reason the Alicorn princesses can't smack Tirek down as a last resort is that they can't beat him while he's under Discord's protection. For all his trouble, Discord gets his powers stolen the moment Tirek is strong enough to just take them.
  • The Evil Prince: Fiendship Is Magic reveals he was an actual prince, adding ambition to his many sins, and showing part of his motive was resentment over his father's (completely justified) holding him back from power, fearing what Tirek would do with it.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: His voice is rather feeble-sounding at first, but it becomes deep and booming later on.
  • False Friend: To Discord.
  • Fatal Flaw: Wrath and Greed.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Acts friendly and polite with Discord, even congratulating him on escaping imprisonment. It continues into the next episode, but is limited to Discord. He drops the act once he no longer needs Discords aid, backstabs him, and mocks Discord for trusting him.
  • Foreshadowing: In "It's About Time", Twilight muses over the catastrophe that could result from the ancient abominations locked in Tartarus breaking out. Celestia confirms that he's been loose since "It's About Time" when Cerberus left his post; he's just been too weak to be a threat until now.
  • Four Is Death: He goes through four forms, each one getting bigger, and each time making his horns grow.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: While he was born an Evil Prince, he was a normal, if talented member of his race. He eventually becomes a near all powerful threat to Equestria. By the end of his time as Arc Villain he's stronger than Discord.
  • Genius Bruiser: He's a Manipulative Bastard good enough to play Discord like a fiddle, but in his penultimate form has enough strength to ram straight through a mountain and lift a slab of rock bigger than he is with little effort.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: His eyes glow yellow.
  • Godzilla Threshold: How dangerous is Tirek? Enough for Celestia to ask Discord to defeat him!
  • Greed: His hunger for power is one of his defining features.
  • In-Name-Only: While he does look somewhat similar, his voice, motivations, and personality are all much different then his G1 counterpart. Still that provides very little comfort when the ponies are confronted by a hellbeast.
  • In the Hood: Starts out wearing a hooded robe, framing the upper half of his face in shadow.
  • Having a Blast: Attacks with fiery blasts of magic from between his horns.
  • Hades Shaded: His skin tone starts off a dull brown and then grows to a bright red as he gains power.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: He sets the stage for his own defeat when he gives Discord his medallion, which is passed on to Twilight when she demands Discord's freedom, turning it into the sixth key that unlocks the Tree of Harmony chest and grants the Mane Six their Rainbow Power. Downplayed in that no one could have seen it coming and Tirek had no way to know this would bite him in the flank.
  • Horror Hunger: His Mana Drain seems to resemble this, as he literally swallows a unicorn/alicorn's magic, leaving them an empty-eyed, blank-flanked shell of their former self.
  • Hulking Out: Initially appearing as scrawny old centaur, but when he starts absorbing magic he gets bigger and more muscular. By the time he fights Twilight, he's turned into a walking tank with his arms growing so big that they break the wrist bands in the picture shown.
  • Hypocrite: He despises his brother for turning against him, yet he uses and betrays Discord without a second thought.
  • It's All About Me: He wants power for himself, he hates his brother for having moral qualms and turning on him and getting in his way. He also constantly refers to the magic of Equestria as being "his", considering it to have always belonged to him in the first place. This explains him stabbing Discord in the back.
  • It's Personal: Destroying Twilight's home made him this for Twilight, prompting her to go berserk on him. Notably, unlike previous villains that did this, the act that warranted this reaction stuck.
  • Jerkass: He's so power hungry he doesn't seem to care if getting what he wants leaves Equestria lifeless. And he will back stab anybody who works with him.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: Seems to start a Villainous Friendship with Discord when he gave the medallion of his brother Scorpan, but he later back-stabs him while saying that the medallion is worthless to him because he hates his brother for "betraying" him. He sees his companionship with Discord just as disposable.
  • Killer Gorilla: His upper humanoid half looks somewhat simian.
  • Large and in Charge: The more magic he absorbs, the larger he becomes. Once he's drained Twilight and thus has absorbed the magic of all four Alicorn Princesses, he's starting to reach Ursa Major size.
  • Large Ham: His hamminess grows proportionally with his size.
  • Lean and Mean: He starts off a scrawny monkey-like figure, then grows stronger as he absorbs magic.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Despite his immense power, he's also fast in his penultimate form.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: Having been sealed in Tartarus for hundreds of years, and then hiding while recovering his strength after his escape, he's not entirely caught up on everything that's happened since his imprisonment, resulting in him being repeatedly surprised. That he quickly adapts and becomes the biggest threat Equestria has ever seen is a testament to his intelligence.
  • Love Is a Weakness: Views friendship in this light, believing his brother Scorpan and Discord were weak minded for allowing friendship to change them. Considering what world this is, he's proven wrong.
  • Magikarp Power: Rare villainous example, see One-Winged Angel.
  • Mana Drain: Has the power to drain others of their magic. At first he can only drain unicorns, but he grows stronger each time, and starts moving on to pegasi, earth ponies, alicorns, and even Discord.
  • Manipulative Bastard: He effortlessly manipulates Discord, himself a master of this trope. He also makes sure to keep Discord on his side; Whenever Discord showed signs of faltering, Tirek would quickly take steps to appease him, either by offering him the chance to "have a little fun", or giving him his brother's medallion as a false symbol of his gratitude and loyalty.
  • Mind over Matter: After he starts gaining power he displays this.
  • Miracle-Gro Monster: A side effect of his Mana Drain.
  • Mix-and-Match Critter: As a centaur, Tirek has the lower body of a horse and a humanoid torso, but also with traits of a bull (horns, nose ring, hoofs) and of an ape (at first rather baboon-like in his weakest form, and then more gorilla-like as he gains power).
  • Moral Myopia: Is willing to suck the life out of an entire country to get what he wants and cause untold suffering, as well as stab Discord in the back, but holds a grudge on his brother Scorpan for betraying him, ignoring the fact Scorpan outright tried to talk him out of it before hand and was ignored, leaving Scorpan with no other choice. He also expresses disgust that Twilight considers Discord her friend despite his backstabbery, though given he had openly expressed friendship as an empty virtue, this may have been the point.
  • Never My Fault: Shows continual hatred and bitterness towards his brother Scorpan, never even considering the fact Scorpan offered him a Last-Second Chance and tried to talk him out of their plans and thus it's entirely Tirek's own fault Scorpan was forced to betray his brother.
  • Nigh Invulnerable: By the time he fights Twilight, he can take hits from massive energy beams that rip trenches in the ground, slams through a mountain, gets sent into the ground by an energy attack that buries him and caught in explosions that leave massive craters... all without a scratch.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis : There's still a little bit of ham in him, but by the standards of most MLP villains he's frighteningly straightforward. He's not even much of a sadist, generally preferring to dispose of his opponents quickly and efficiently and THEN maybe indulge in some light taunting.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: In the Bad Future where he wins, there doesn't appear to be anything left for him to rule, because he's just going around destroying everything with sadistic glee.
  • One-Man Army: He starts off small and weak as a result of his imprisonment, but as he starts growing stronger he drains hundreds of ponies of their magic, dozens at a time. Even charged up with the power of Celestia, Luna, and Cadance, Twilight is barely able to fight him to a standstill.
  • One-Winged Angel: Starts out as a weak, frail creature but the more magic he consumes, the larger and more powerful he becomes (his hair also grows out, giving him a Badass Beard, and his horns go from little stubs to almost as long as his arms) and his appearance becomes more menacing. His final form is almost the size of an Ursa Major.
  • Our Centaurs Are Different: For one thing, this one is the My Little Pony equivalent of Satan. His upper body is more simian than human.
  • Our Demons Are Different: He's not from Hell, he's from Tartarus. And he wasn't even born from there in the first place.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Case in point: an attack aimed at Twilight manages to blow Golden Oak Library to kingdom come and his battle with her devastates the landscape.
  • Physical God: By the end of his stint as Big Bad, he's become stronger than Discord and Nigh Invulnerable.
  • Power Makes Your Hair Grow: Rare case where getting more power causes his facial hair to grow (into a Badass Beard). It's not until he's near the height of his power that the hair on his head grows too.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Tirek mocks Discord for trusting him to actually share his power once everything is said and done, basically calling him an idiot for throwing away everything to get nothing in the end.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: His character design invokes much use of red and black, and he's definitely not a hero.
  • Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: Pulls this on Discord, and was genuinely confused as to why Twilight would still consider him a friend.
  • Satanic Archetype: He came from another realm to conquer Equestria, but was defeated and sealed in Tartarus. Now that he's back he's considered the most powerful threat the kingdom has ever seen, and he manipulates Discord into helping him, only to turn on him once he no longer needs him. At the height of his power he even looks the part, with a white beard, red skin, horns, and of course, hooves.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: He was; now he's out. He's re-sealed at the end of the finale.
  • Shadow Archetype: Like Discord pre-Character Development, he's self centered, holds a grudge when slighted despite his own evil deeds, considers Friendship to be a worthless thing, and is a Manipulative Bastard of the highest order. Unlike Discord, instead of allowing a friend (Discord, ironically) to change him, he stabs said "friend" in the back at the first opportunity, something Discord originally couldn't bring himself to do until convinced to by Tirek. Fittingly, it's Discords fully embracing the value of friendship that leads to Tirek being vanquished.
  • Shapeshifter Swan Song: After being hit by the Mane 6's Wave Motion Gun.
  • The Sociopath: Feels no empathy for anyone he hurts as long as he gets his way, and will manipulate anyone he pleases to serve his ends. He's basically Discord if he didn't reform.
  • Super Toughness: In his penultimate form prior to draining Twilight, his power was such that even the combined power of the Alicorn Princesses could only match him equally. By the end of it he is completely unharmed, only annoyed that he was not strong enough to get what he wanted by brute force.
  • This Cannot Be!: His reaction to the Mane Six obtaining their Super Mode and No Selling his Wave-Motion Tuning Fork after he drained their magic.
  • Time Abyss: Has spent over a thousand years imprisoned in Tartarus, and may be even older than that, as it's implied he and Discord may know each other.
  • Too Powerful to Live: What would you expect from someone who just drained Discord?
  • Top-Heavy Guy: His Hulking Out eventually makes his arms bigger than his legs.
  • Unexpected Character: Considering that Hasbro lost the rights to a lot of their G1 properties, the return of Tirek—the villain of the G1 TV special Rescue at Midnight Castle — certainly counts as this.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Suffers the expected screaming fit as the Mane Six overpower and drain him.
  • Villainous Friendship: Started one with Discord but only for the sake of manipulating him.
  • Villainous Legacy: In "Castle Sweet Castle", the episode is all about Twilight and company dealing with the aftermath of his rampage, but Tirek never appears and is never even mentioned.
  • Virtue Is Weakness: He sees friendship as another form of imprisonment.
  • Wave-Motion Tuning Fork: His magic is generated in the space between his horns, though it still comes from the same point over his head even in his weaker, hornless form.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Has a white beard and starting with his penultimate form has a white mane, but is worse than Discord ever was in terms of sheer evil.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Tirek has no problem with physically manhandling Celestia, as well as Twilight, whom he throws into a mountain followed by tackling her through it. Likewise, when offering Twilight's friends in exchange for the alicorns' magic, the clearly implied bargain is the magic for their lives.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Tirek has no problem holding Spike hostage, with the implication he'd be completely willing to kill the little dragon along with Twilight's other friends if it gets him what he wants. Of course, given his G1 counterpart threatened to decapitate Spike, this should come as no surprise.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: Tirek is repeatedly caught off-guard throughout the two-parter due to acting on faulty information, but proves very adept at rolling with the punches.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Played straight with Discord — once he's helped Tirek become powerful enough, Tirek drains him as well.

    Starlight Glimmer 

    The Pony of Shadows 
Speaking debut: "Shadow Play - Part 1"

Voiced by: Bill Newton.

A Living Shadow said to be a remnant of Nightmare Moon's magic left behind when she was banished, that haunts the ruins of the Castle of the Two Sisters. In "Castle Mane-ia" it's believed to be just an old legend, but it turns out to have an element of truth to it: the Pony of Shadows was real, and acts as the villain of Season 7's finale "Shadow Play".

  • Big Bad: Of the two-part Season 7 finale "Shadow Play".
  • In the Hood: The figure who appeared at the end of Castle Mane-ia certainly looked to be a hooded figure.
  • Mysterious Past: Applejack's tale is the only sort of backstory it has, and even then we don't know if that's really its origin. We don't even know if the hooded figure from the castle is the person from Applejack's legend or someone entirely unrelated. "Shadow Play" reveals its history in full.
  • Shout-Out: In-Name-Only to the Lord of Shadows from Castlevania, since its debut episode's title is a Shout-Out to the game.

Non-Arc Villains

    Ahuizotl 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ahuizotl_8287.png

Voiced by: Brian Drummondnote 

A villain based on an Ahuizotl from Aztec Mythology. He's the big bad of the book Daring Do and the Quest for the Sapphire Stone. And since he's an in-universe fictional character, he's a hilariously cliched and over the top bad guy... or so we thought. He's actually not so fictional after all.

  • Arch-Enemy: Of Daring Do.
  • Badass Normal: Relatively speaking; even if he's obviously a dangerous creature, Ahuizotl is the only major villain without magical powers of his own. He makes up with his size and strength, and his many Badass Normal mooks and minions (including several large cats).
  • The Beastmaster: Being partially feline, Ahuizotl seems to have control over cats in general.
  • Big Bad: Seems to be the one for all of Daring Do's books, if Twilight and Rainbow's explanations of the books in "Daring Don't" are any indication. It also turns out he's Real After All.
  • Big "NO!": Of course he had to release one of these.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Instead of having his cat minions take care of Daring Do directly, he opts to leave her in an ancient Death Trap. Granted, it's a darn good deathtrap.
  • Cats Are Mean: Has a number of dangerous big cats — and one cute white kitten — as his Evil Minions. Ahuizotl himself is half feline.
  • Diabolical Mastermind: He's a classic example of the trope; highly intelligent, focused on his goals and always manages to come out ahead until just the very last moment. Not to mention the fixation on Death Traps.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": They can get away with this since there aren't many other Ahuizotls to confuse him with.
  • Endless Daytime: While it's never actually stated, based on the dialogue and the ways things are framed, his plan to bring 800 years on scorching heat seemed to involve locking the sun in the sky. Somehow, this is only supposed to affect just the valley he is in and not the rest of Equestria.
  • Evil Is Hammy: He could rival Discord for over-the-top villainous theatrics.
  • Harmless Villain: Compared to the other major villains that the Mane Six have faced in the series, he's very small time. His Evil Plan involves bringing only 800 years of unrelenting heat to a single valley. It's a plan that Dr. Doofenshmirtz would have cooked up.
    • To put things into perspective, he's the only would-be conqueror on this page who doesn't show up in The Cutie Re-Mark. The Flim-Flam Brothers get a Bad Future to themselves and Ahuizotl doesn't!
  • Kick the Dog: Slashing off Mojo's cutie mark in The Daring Do Adventure Collection. For a character normally portrayed rather comically, this is surprisingly ruthless.
  • Killer Gorilla: He is part ape and a villain, after all.
  • Large Ham: He's a character in a book, after all. Only he's real. Just as hammy as ever.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: A giant feline-monkey hybrid.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain:
    • He's still a decent threat to his actual nemesis and has very good Death Traps. He also managed to take Rainbow Dash off guard and capture her. It's also implied that the only reason he hadn't become a major threat is because Daring Do had stopped him from obtaining the magical artifacts that would give him high-level powers.
    • The Daring Do Adventure Collection certainly portrays him somewhat less comically. Daring Do treats Ahuizotl as The Dreaded, and he acts much more sinister, holding Daring hostage in front of her uncle and even scarring a pony who no longer wanted to be his henchpony.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: Ahuizotl don't usually appear much in popular culture, do they?
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Comes across as this considering he's not a Physical God level threat like the the major villains. He's still dangerous, but not on Nightmare Moon, Discord, and King Sombra's level.
  • Prehensile Tail: The production team have Shown Their Work; this is one of the ahuizotl's most notable features in Aztec myth.
  • Real After All: Hard to believe, but Ahuizotl are apparently real creatures in the My Little Pony universe. Most ponies, however, think they´re mythical creatures, which explains why they think Ahuizotl only exists as a fictional villain in Daring Do's stories.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Plenty of villains have a Right-Hand Cat, but not many have one so adorable.
  • Right-Hand Cat: Ahuizotl has a white Cute Kitten among his feline minions. It's worth pointing out that it's every bit as aggressive as the panthers and tigers it's hanging with.
  • Right-Hand Attack Dog: Ahuizotl has several great cats (and a small kitten) at his command to sic on meddling heroes in general (and Daring Do in particular).
  • Shown Their Work: Besides his physical appearance, Ahuizotl also shares his mythical counterpart's fondness of death traps. The ahuizotl from myth attracts victims to water by mimicking a baby's crying, then grabs them with a prehensile tail and drowns them.
  • Villain of Another Story: He's apparently having world-conquering plots and fights with Daring Do while the Mane Cast and their villains are busy having their own fights for the fate of the world. Apparently, the fact he lacks high level magical powers of his own helps him get under Celestia and Luna's radar, explaining why the Princesses hadn't done anything against Ahuizotl themselves despite the fact he seeks for magical artifacts that would make him as dangerous as the other major villains. See the Harmless Villain entry for an explanation.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Lacking magical powers of his own, Ahuizotl and his minions/mooks get into physical fights with Daring Do, plus leaving her in particularly good death traps. Justified given how competent she is in three-on-one combat.

    The Mane-iac 

    The Tantabus 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tantabus.png

A mysterious force that appears to be made of nightmares, it is more like a phenomenon than an actual character. It was contained within Luna's dreams to prevent it from growing stronger. It grows stronger with every dream it infects and seeks to enter, and infect, the real world with its nightmares.

  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The Tantabus grows the more Luna keeps reflecting on her guilt of being Nightmare Moon. Near the end of the battle, it takes on the form of a colossal pony and nearly escapes into the real world.
  • Bishonen Line: Goes from a shapeless mass to a gigantic unicorn-like final form once it's powerful enough to enter the real world.
  • Celestial Body: The cloudy body of the Tantabus looks to be star-filled. It's another hint of its connection with Luna, since it resembles her (or Nightmare Moon's) ethereal mane (with one Match Cut drawing attention to the similarity).
  • Climax Boss: Is this for Luna's Redemption Quest Story Arc, as she defeats it by finally forgiving herself and moving on.
  • Dream Weaver: Is rampaging through the dream realm causing nightmares. As it turns out, Luna made it to do this to her.
  • Emotion Eater: Feeds on nightmares to grow stronger. However, what it's most powered by is Luna's guilt.
  • Fog of Doom: The original form of the Tantabus, described as blue smoke. At first its small, but by the time it reaches the shared dream, it has become a huge cloud of star-filled darkness.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: The Tantabus started out as simply Luna's self-inflicted punishment for her actions at Nightmare Moon. By the end of the episode, it's grown so powerful that it's not only threatening the dreams of all of Ponyville, but came close to escaping into reality and becoming a concrete threat to Equestria.
    • Played with as well. It literally STARTS as a nightmare. Then it gets worse.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Luna made it to be her self inflicted punishment for her time as Nightmare Moon. It does that, but eventually grows so strong it begins targeting her friends as well.
  • Grew Beyond Their Programming: Luna created the Tantabus to punish herself with nightmares. Eventually the Tantabus decided to move on to other dreamers.
  • The Heartless: Is this to Luna. It the embodiment of Luna's guilt over Nightmare Moon, and the more guilt she feels the stronger it gets. It's only by letting her guilt go that it can be defeated.
  • Reality Warper: Everypony must prevent it from escaping into reality and becoming this.
  • Walking Wasteland: Everything the Tantabus touches in the dream world is turned into something horrific.
  • Your Mind Makes It Real: Variation. It's a beast dwelling in the dream realm, but if it grows too strong, it'll enter reality and turn that into a nightmare too.
  • Your Worst Nightmare: Its MO. Within an individual pony's dream, the Tantabus quickly changes the dream into something that terrifies that pony more than anything else. That's what Luna made it to do to her.

    Daybreaker 

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Characters/FriendshipIsMagicMajorVillains