Yang and Blake become partners in Episode 6 (later becoming a full team when they join with Ruby and Weiss). Going by the lyrics of 'Red Like Roses', that makes them the Beauty and the Beast.
Making another fairy tale duo, Weiss and Ruby's names and partnership make them Snow-White and Rose-Red. This lets Team RWBY allude to five different fairy tales with only four members.
The girls are inspired by seemingly unrelated tales. However, each tale involves a girl, a house, and a potentially dangerous creature within. Red Riding Hood has her grandma's house and the Big Bad Wolf, Snow White has the Seven Dwarves' cottage, Belle has the Beast's mansion, and Goldilocks has the house with the Three Bears.
In episode 11, Ruby eats cookies while Weiss eats an apple. Rather appropriate, given their respective Fairytale Motifs.
The brilliance of Roman being Ruby's first fight: Roman is named, obviously, for the Roman empire. The empire's cultural center was Rome. The brilliance comes in when you recall who founded Rome in mythology: Romulus and Remus, two brothers who were... wait for it... feral children raised by wolves. Ruby, meet Roman.
The academies that train people to fight the monsters threatening civilization are called "Signal", "Beacon," and "Sanctum", which reference the "points of light" idea of an Adventure-Friendly World where isolated cities fight against the darkness.
A further connection between Weiss and her inspiration, Snow White: Mines. Dust is implied to be harvested from the earth (see the crystals it's sold as in Episode 1), and Weiss's family own Dust mines/process the substance. Snow White traveled to a mine and helped the workers there.
Ruby's weapon of choice is a Sinister Scythe, which is often associated with the Grim Reaper. The monsters are collectively known as the Grimm. Overall, many characters and creatures hail from stories written by The Brothers Grimm.
Pyrrha didn't use any recoil from her weapon to slow her descent, and just smashed through everything until she stopped. While this in itself is a viable strategy, it makes more sense given that she was intending to help Jaune all along. Since he was just falling, with nothing stopping him, she couldn't slow herself down and still land in time.
In Forever Fall Part 2, Pyrrha explains that she can control magnetism. This explains her absurd accuracy with a thrown spear, and her shield (there's a Freeze-Frame Bonus in Players and Pieces where her spear hovers up to her hand with the magnetic sound effect when she gets launched over the Death Stalker). Magnetism would give her a large advantage over most opponents. Most of the characters we've seen so far use metallic weapons. Magnetism is one of the most versatile powers in fiction, reinforcing Pyrrha's position as the "strongest fighter" in Beacon.
The lyric "And victory is in a simple soul" takes on an additionally optimistic tone after having learned that the Grimm are The Soulless, lacking even the simplest of souls and, consequently, victory. And given Episode 1's narration which ends with Ozpin commenting that perhaps the answer lies with a simpler, more innocent soul. Aura, used in combat, draws power from your soul. Victory is LITERALLY dependent on your soul, not just metaphorically.
The white flash whenever a human character is struck by one of the powerful blows being thrown around in the Yellow trailer is, in retrospect, clearly their aura defending them from lethal damage.
Cardin's meaningful name explained by darkstarsabre on reddit:
"People have picked up on the Winchester part and the firearms being used in colonial activities - largely alluding to his treatment of faunus. But something much more interesting for you to consider. Henry Beaufort. The Cardinal of Winchester who presided at the trial of Joan of Arc."
Jaune faked his way into Beacon, explaining his initial incompetence, his Boring, but Practical sword and shield as opposed to the Crazy mix-and-match weapons of the rest of Beacon's student body (and his surprise at Ruby's Crescent Rose being custom-made), his extremely casual clothing (underneath his armor, he's just wearing a sweatshirt, jeans, and sneakers), and the fact that he didn't recognize Pyrrha except by a cereal box advertisement.
When Blake gets tired of everyone bickering around her while she's trying to read, she gets everyone to shut up by blowing out her candle, seemingly surrendering her book for some peace and quiet. However, we later find out that she's a Faunus, and that means she can see in the dark, so she likely wasn't losing any reading time at all.
How do cats act towards new people? Cold, stand-offish... but once they realize you're family; they warm up to you. Exactly how Blake acted.
Weiss's refusal to acknowledge that not all Faunus are bad news and Blake's refusal to acknowledge that the White Fang really is showing their black and white views of the issue, matching their color themes.
Why did Roman run from robbery at first when it's fully possible he could have taken Ruby in a straight fight? Because there was no point in doing so. The container full of dust was lost in the action, leaving him with no reason to do anything but simply book it.
After Blake explains the backstory of the White Fang, it becomes apparent that the song "From Shadows" isn't about Blake, but about the White Fang.
So we know that Ruby associates better with weapons than with people, and what's her gun's last name again? That's right, she named Crescent Rose like a family member.
The RWBY "White" trailer was released on February 14, 2013, otherwise known as Valentine's Day. The song featured in the trailer, "Mirror Mirror", makes constant references to being alone. February 14 is also known as Singles Awareness Day.
A meta example: the shipping name 'White Rose' is a reference to Weiss and Ruby, but also a literal description of Ruby's sigil.
The iconic pose Ruby makes against the moon in her trailer is subtly repeated in the other three. Weiss poses in front of a window's streaming light before delivering the finishing blow to the knight, Blake poses in front of the shattered moon after doing a launch attack with Gambol Shroud against the Spider Mecha, and Yang backflips after punching Junior, posing up against the disco ball at the club as she reaches the height of the flip.
The hilariously over-the-topFood Fight in "Best Day Ever", between Teams RWBY and JNPR, is clearly more than just that; look closely at how many of them used food (and other things) in ways that highly acted like their regular weapons. In other words, a what-if subtext of Team RWBY vs. Team JNPR. Even better. Rubies are red, juniper berries are blue. In other words...Red vs. Blue.
Also from the Food Fight, why were Team RWBY and Team JNPR able to use leeks, sausages, turkeys, baguettes and watermelons as weapons? Back in Season One, Pyrrha mentions that Aura can be used to strengthen weapons, among other things, to Jaune. Apparently in the hands of a skilled Aura user, even a broom is as tough as a sword. Or a piece of bread. Or a swordfish.
There's a neat callback during the Food Fight when once again in a fight, Ruby does a Flash Step directly in front of Weiss. Only this time, instead of screwing up Weiss's attack, it was to take the shot from Nora that Weiss was trying to brace for.
Cinder's team acronym:
If Cinder, Roman, Mercury, and Emerald were a Hunter team, they'd be team CRME (Crime).
Going by the color rules, it also works as CREM (Cream).
With Neo added, they're Team CRMSN. (Using Emerald's last name, Sustrai.)
The first book Emerald asks Tukson for is The Thief and the Butcher; Emerald's been called a "Master Thief" by Mercury, and Mercury seems to have been the one that killed Tukson - making him the Butcher.
Why did Penny sound unnaturally cheery and exceedingly strict in her diction at the end of Volume 1? Because she's a robot, as revealed in Volume 2, Episode 3. It is likely that her personality hadn't developed much beyond that of a basic AI at the time of first meeting the gang, and in the few weeks between the fight and meeting Ruby again, it could have developed, and is now much more subtle, and more natural.
Going back to Volume 1: When Nora and Ren are introduced, a joke is made of Nora's motor-mouth nature by having her constantly gabble over the duo's morning activities. Note how she seems to continue talking about the same subject over each timeskip. Impossible, yes? This could be seen as just a weird mistake... or it could imply that Nora is so scatterbrained, that she keeps looping the monologue back around to the same subjects over and over and over again.
Kara Eberle states that Weiss' favorite season is winter. One wonders if she was foreshadowing the name of her sister. Her comment about how she always wanted bunk beds as a kid suddenly makes more sense.
One of Sun Wukong's powers is the ability of his hairs to turn into copies of himself - making the RWBY Sun's semblance make total sense.
In Painting The Town..., Penny mentions that Ruby is taking the news of her true nature surprisingly well. All the way back in Shining Beacon, however, Ruby mentions that meeting new weapons is just like meeting new people, only better. Penny, a weapon in the form of a person, is probably one of the coolest things Ruby can think of. No wonder she takes the news so well.
Yang's semblance absorbs damage and sends it back at her opponent. Her Ember Celica are two shotguns strapped onto her arms, the recoil would cause some force against her arms when she fires them. So basically she absorbs the recoil from her Ember Celica and gets stronger with every shot. One suggestion floated on Tumblr is that her action of punching her fists together is a self powerup.
During the food fight, Nora took her out the only surefire way possible... by actually physically taking her out of the battlefield.
Every time Penny tells a lie she hiccups. Kinda like Pinocchio's nose growing when he lies.
Junior says none of his men came back. What were his men doing with Roman? Robbing a Dust store. What happened during that robbery? They got blasted by Ruby. Not knowing that Yang trashed the bar after they'd left, they'd be too scared to go back to Junior telling him exactly what happened..... that they'd had their asses handed to them by a 15-year old girl half their height. Considering what Junior implied about his men, this wouldn't be out of line with their character. While it is possible the police picked them up, as an information broker, Junior would have likely known that. Given what happened to Tucson, this might drift into Fridge Horror too.
Pyrrha takes on team CRDL in 4 on 1 fight. Who wants to bet she agreed to that because she still had a grudge for how they treated Jaune? Throw in the brutal way she finished off Cardin and it looks pretty likely. Given Glynda's protests when Mercury requested to fight Pyrrha, it even possible that fighting Team CRDL was Pyrrha's idea. Sadly, she didn't make good on her threat to break his legs.
Pyrrha and Jaune training together can't figure out Jaune's semblance. We've already seen Jaune's semblance in Forever Fall Part Two, it was the flash of light that simultaneously negated one of Cardin's attacks while healing Jaune's black eye. The reason Pyrrha's training won't trigger it is because she won't hurt Jaune enough.
In Vol. 2 Episode 5, Cinder is seen sewing. While the implications for the meaning behind the needle are very much wild mass guessing, the actual act of sewing makes sense in the context of her fairy tale: after all, Cinderella was expected to serve her wicked stepmother and stepsisters and do every chore, sewing included. In Vol. 2 Episode 7, we see her clothes glow like fire when she attacks and could change into a formal dress when she had to make a quick disguise. What we saw her do in episode 5 was weaving dust into her clothes.
In Vol. 2 Episode 6, we learn that Yang took Ruby when she was a toddler to follow a hint about Yang's mother, when they were attacked by Beowolves, and saved by Qrow. Ruby was asleep for most of the trip, judging from the flashback art and Yang's narration. However, if she wasn't woken up by snarling Grimm, she must have woken up when Qrow saved them with his ballistic scythe; this might have instilled Ruby with the desire to learn such a difficult weapon: watching her uncle save her life.
Yang, whose motif is Goldilocks, once travelled to a house inhabited by dangerous animals when she was a child. And Ruby, who has the Little Red Riding Hood motif, went along with her. The sisters are saved from the Beowolves thanks to their uncle, who happens to be a Hunter.
In the first episode of Volume 2 we see Pyrrha use her Semblance power to send a storm of cans at Team RWBY. She was probably just goofing around with her friends, but at the same time none of them were using their regular, metal weapons. The cans were probably the only thing she could do with it. It was probably one of the few times she could actually use her semblance so openly as well.
With Yang's explanation of her's and Ruby's mothers in chapter 2.6 (who both disappeared in similar circumstances), Red Like Roses Part II could easily apply to her and her mum as much as it does to Ruby and Summer. Might also even apply to Yang and Summer Rose, considering that by the way she described her, she did (and does) see her as her mother too.
Jaune references Weiss singing. The only time we've seen her do that is her trailer, so he was in the audience. It probably influenced his decision to fake his way into Beacon too.
Yang's symbol is a burning heart, and two of her outfits have undershirts which, combined with the tops layered over them, form a heart shape. What is one of her major character traits? Her love and devotion to Ruby, of course.
Back in the Yellow Trailer, when Yang punched the floor of Junior's club, it uncharacteristically bent around the impact, rather than being shattered upon impact. How? Perhaps the answer lies with Dust - it's been explained in the first World of Remnant that Dust can be woven within cloth, as well as directly fused with human bodies as well. Perhaps it could do the general same with metal/glass/other materials, giving them unique effects.
The Weiss Schnee is primarily shipped with Ruby Rose in the fandom. Weiss' current love interest in canon is Neptune Vasilias. When one looks at the hair color of Weiss' potential soul mates, the logical conclusion is that the resulting shipping war could be called... Red vs. Blue.
Joan of Arc was known for crossdressing and leading the French; she was also known for not doing much fighting on the battlefield herself, but instead being a strategic leader. Come season 2 episode 7, Jaune has officially worn drag, and is the leader of team JNPR. Not only that, but Jaune is just about the weakest fighter in his team; he's the leader because of his strategic skills, not his battle prowess.
The first actual exam for Beacon Academy involves catapulting several students several hundred feet in the air, into a forest infested with shadow-like beasts, and at least one cavern that is home to a gigantic scorpion. Most of the main cast is tough and well-trained, with the exception of Jaune, who had no knowledge of how to use his Aura, the same power that makes the other characters superhuman. What would have happened to Jaune if Pyrrha hadn't gone out of her way to land quickly and save him? Assuming he did survive the fall, he wouldn't have lasted long in that forest. It hasn't been mentioned yet if there have been any students like Jaune who may have been killed during this exam in the past. Beacon does perform some manner of background check on their entrants, but Jaune got in, despite being obviously unprepared, through a so-far vague screening process. This makes even more sense when you find out Jaune faked his papers to get into Beacon. Is the reason Ozpin still accepted him because he knew If he was lying, he would likely die in the first test, anyway? This makes Ozpin's "I'm proud of you" moment sound a lot more sinister.
We know that the Schnee Dust Company has been fighting with the White Fang. The latter has committed, theft, kidnapping, and murder. All we know about the former is that they've mistreated Fauna and committed dubious practices. At this point, the Schnee might be the bigger victims, justifying Weiss' anger towards the White Fang.
Weiss says that her father would come home furious everyday, and that it made for a difficult childhood. The way she said this, pounding her fist on the table, and being the highest emotional peak in her rant as she aggressively reacts against discussing it any longer, gives off the heavy implication of Abusive Parents.
The original plan with White Fang was to blow up the train; hence Blake backing out and cutting the train tracks; leaving Adam with....a big shipment of Dust. This occurrence likely led to their current partnership with Roman.
In the first episode of volume two, Cinder caresses Roman's face when telling him just to do what she tells him to do. ...her eyes start to glow; and you can hear a faint sizzling. She's using her Semblance of fire from her hands; just enough that Roman can feel it. IE, she was telling him she could burn his face off if he gets too nosy.
In "Welcome to Beacon", the look Cinder gives Ruby seems to indicate more than just recognition from the incident at the start of the series.
Roman singling out Weiss and calling her Ice Queen. Could almost be a thinly veiled threat, with him saying "Oh, I know who you are, Miss Schnee Heiress." And/or that on top of Cinder, Mercury, and Emerald's infiltration the school, there's passive surveillance on the school as well, if not RWBY specifically.
Junior says that the men that Roman hired never made it back and Junior never heard from them. This means that either Ruby killed them in episode 1 or Roman or Cinder killed them afterwards.
So what happened to the people in those cars that Roman knocked off the road in his Paladin Mech? While they'd have Aura, their Aura were likely still locked like Jaune's was.
Going back to episode of of volume two, Roman lists off three effects of his robberies: People are panicking. The police are acting in force. And most importantly, the price of Dust is through the roof. The SDC is fully capable of taking full advantage of this situation, acting as the hero to Roman's villain. It's even likely Roman has them thinking that his thefts are false flag operations just to hide the fact he is also in cahoots with the real White Fang. Team RWBY is screwed.
Yang is a GREAT sister to Ruby. There was even a song about what a great sister she was to Ruby! However, a little of that could stem from the fact that Yang endangered Ruby when she was a toddler, almost getting her killed by Beowolves because of her own curiosity when she took her in a wagon to look for her own birth mother.
Jaune's false transcripts raise so many questions. Are his parents okay with it? Do they know where he is? Why haven't they been contacted?
After all the pleading from Blake's teammates to take a breather from the investigation, Blake agrees to attend the dance with Sun. When and if team RWBY find out exactly what took place during the dance while they were busy enjoying themselves, Blake could very well take the revelation the hardest and fall right back into the hole she was in.