Context: Because without it MLP is a show about 5 lesbian ponies, a pimp named Spike and a pink serial killer.My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has an Improbably Female Cast and is based around close relationships. It was almost inevitable to have at least some Ho Yay, with or without Shipping Goggles.
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Rainbow Dash with Pinkie Pie
Happens with Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash so many times it's easy to lose count, jokes about the latter's rainbow-coloured mane aside. Like with Lyra and Bon Bon/Sweetie Drops, many have pointed out Pinkie's eyes are close to Rainbow's coat color, and Rainbow's eyes are close to Pinkie's mane and tail color.
- "Griffon the Brush Off" plays exactly like Pinkie Pie trying to vie for Rainbow Dash's attention after her old flame shows up. It even starts with something very closely resembling Pepe le Pew chasing Penelope Pussycat, complete with Pinkie doing his little love hop sound as Rainbow sprints off, where Pepe would grope and mouthrape her until she broke free. Ninjaed! Netflix's description of the episode says that Pinkie becomes a "third wheel" between Gilda and Rainbow. This includes Gilda (see below) violently preventing Pinkie from intruding on her time with Rainbow, and Twilight outright stating she thinks Pinkie is jealous of Rainbow and Gilda's relationship. And at the end, after Gilda reveals herself to be a total bitch, Rainbow reaffirms that she'd much rather be with Pinkie.
- Pinkie's Rainbow Dash obsession is revisited in later episodes; it's almost a running gag that she's Rainbow Dash's Stalker Without A Crush (with similar themes to a stalker with a crush), with Pinkie affectionately calling her "Dashie" (something almost nopony else does), following her damn near everywhere (particularly in "Over a Barrel" and "Party of One"), and having a severe case of No Sense of Personal Space even by Pinkie standards.
- In "Party of One" the pony sent to fetch Pinkie for her surprise party is Rainbow Dash, entering with a brief shot showing Rainbow Dash's face framed in the heart on Pinkie's door. Rainbow Dash tries to force Pinkie Pie to move by shoving her forehead in Pinkie Pie's butt, Pinkie then sits on Dash's face, and Rainbow Dash says they'll have to do it "the hard way".
- Right at the end of "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000", Pinkie offers one of her mugs of cider to a really crushed Rainbow Dash after the poor Pegasus finds the cider running out yet again. Throughout most of the episode, Pinkie acts extremely oblivious to Dash's annoyance at not being able to get any cider, and while gushing about the cider she just drank, Pinkie leans further and further onto Rainbow Dash, until she's literally draped over Dash's back.
- The infamous "wingboner" incident in "Over a Barrel", where Rainbow Dash's wings are tucked against her body and then suddenly splayed to the side after Pinkie reveals her showgirl outfit.
- "Read It And Weep" opens with an equally wide-eyed, smiling Pinkie and Rarity watching mesmerized as Rainbow performs a bunch of impressive flying tricks, like a couple of drooling fangirls.
- In "Too Many Pinkie Pies" Pinkie initially is unable to choose between Applejack and Rainbow Dash for the afternoon, but once she has her first clone immediately chooses to be with Dashie herself and sends her clone to Applejack. Rainbow Dash is willing to be far more patient with Pinkie's antics than she normally would be for other characters, even as she states she just wants to relax while Pinkie is being her usual self. In response to this, Pinkie actually goes quiet, something she almost never does unless things are serious.
Pinkie Pie: At least we'll still be together!
- All throughout "Wonderbolts Academy", Pinkie becomes increasingly stressed while Rainbow is off at the academy, unable to spend time together, and almost devolves into a state of paranoia and depression very similar to her previous Sanity Slippage. At the end of the episode, when the others have been saved by Rainbow Dash, Pinkie happily jumps into Rainbow's forelegs and glomps her tight.
- In "Daring Don't", Pinkie hugs Dash and rubs up against her for far longer than is strictly necessary, before Dash pushes her away.
- Pinkie Pie is infuriated when she thinks Rainbow Dash has been hurt in "Rainbow Falls", and threatens payback on who/whatever hurt Dash. In the episode, she also acts as the Ponyville Team's single cheerleader, and loudly cheers on Dash as she flies the relay race.
- In "Pinkie Pride", Pinkie and Dash hold hooves right before Pinkie pins Dash to the ground and ends up in quite an interesting position. Pinkie spends the whole episode desperately trying to impress Rainbow Dash and make her happy, only stopping when she realized that her efforts were only making Rainbow Dash less happy. She also treats Rainbow Dash's "birthaversary" as a very serious matter, more so than most of her parties.
- In My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Rainbow Rocks, the human counterparts of the cast have a slumber party at Pinkie Pie's house. Everyone else is sleeping on the floor, but Rainbow Dash is in the bed with Pinkie.
- In "The Lost Treasure of Griffonstone" Dash and Pinkie are the only two chosen by the map to go to the griffon city. Even inanimate objects ship them!
- As mentioned below, the first act of "Dungeons and Discords" has a ton of suggestiveness around Spike and Big Mac's RPG playing. And at episode's end, Rainbow and Pinkie join them in a game.
- In one of the Friendship Games shorts, Pinkie sniffs Dash for no apparent reason and tells her she smells like vanilla.
- "Secrets and Pies" is quite possibly the most PinkieDash filled episode of the show to date—Pinkie reveals that she's been making special pies specifically for Rainbow Dash for years, is extremely hurt when she realizes that Rainbow Dash doesn't like them and has been lying about it for years, more or less "breaks up" with her when the truth finally comes out and after forgiving her, tells her that all she ever really wanted was to make her happy. On Rainbow Dash's side, she reveals that the whole reason she lied about liking pie was to spare Pinkie's feelings and make her happy, is shown to be genuinely distraught about the aforementioned "break up" and is willing to risk food poisoning from a rancid homemade pie to earn Pinkie's forgiveness (Pinkie, fortunately, stops her before she can). Heck, just look at the context of said break-up!
Rainbow Dash: (after Pinkie explodes at her over the lies) Wait! I can explain!
Pinkie: (furious) I DON'T WANNA HEAR IT!
(Later, at Twilight's castle)
Rainbow Dash: (sounding like she might cry) She won't listen to me...she won't let me apologize...(sighs) I feel terrible!
- After the Pony of Shadows is defeated in "Shadow Play", Pinkie Pie's first act is to jump up and glomp Rainbow Dash while shouting "FRIENDSHIP RUSH!"
Rainbow Dash with Fluttershy
Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy, Childhood Friends for longer than any of the other mane six members have even known each other, are frequently shown to be very close.
- "Sonic Rainboom" opens with Fluttershy recapping "the elements of a good cheer" that Rainbow Dash has been teaching her: "loss of control", "screaming and hollering", and "passion". It's given out of context with no explanation until afterwards, so it kinda sounds like she and Rainbow Dash are talking about... something else.
- Their first meeting (as shown in "The Cutie Mark Chronicles") is straight out of a Rescue Romance, with Rainbow rushing in to protect Fluttershy from the bullies tormenting her, and Rainbow herself saying that she was "defending Fluttershy's honour".
- In "May The Best Pet Win," Fluttershy starts the song with, "Rainbow, my dear..." — a song the two spend the next three minutes singing together, often throwing their arms around each other, grabbing the other by the shoulders, or leaning very close in the other's face. Later, letting the tortoise compete in her contest is all-too-obviously the very last thing rainbow Dash wants to do, but when Fluttershy pleads with her with those adorable puppy-dog eyes, you can tell she's gonna give in (which she does).
- A Running Gag in the play performed in "Hearth's Warming Eve" (casting by Princess Celestia) is Fluttershy's character jumping into Rainbow's character's arms.
- "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000" opens with Rainbow Dash barging into Fluttershy's room and pulling the blanket off of her as she lies in bed, causing the latter to blush and cover her chest (albeit rather pointlessly). Rainbow Dash also deciding to cut Fluttershy in on her deal to hoard cider (over all her other friends) says a bit, as does Rainbow letting Fluttershy go ahead of her in line.
- "Hurricane Fluttershy" is utterly full of Ship Tease for them. Rainbow Dash can stay amazingly patient and understanding of Fluttershy's nerves, while Fluttershy can work herself up enough to overcome her fears for Rainbow's sake. One particular line from Twilight Sparkle helps seal the deal. "Do it for Rainbow Dash", indeed.
Fluttershy: I'll do it.
- Rainbow at one point tells a distraught Fluttershy "But I need you!" while dramatic, emotional music plays. Then, after Fluttershy runs off, Rainbow Dash reaches out with her hoof, her disappointment and frustration mimicking a lover being disappointed in their other half. Fluttershy's breakdowns themselves seemed to be a combination of self-doubt and being upset for disappointing Rainbow.
- Rainbow took no comfort whatsoever when told by Spike and Twilight that they could break the record. All she could think about was Fluttershy's despair.
- Throughout the episode, Rainbow was oftentimes making intimate physical contact with Fluttershy. Hugging her, bringing a foreleg around her shoulders, touching her cheek, holding her at arm's length, and even sharing the equivalent of a high five.
- Fluttershy showing up at the site of the reservoir during Tornado Day, just to give Rainbow moral support. Despite that she felt terrible and didn't even want to participate in the slightest, she still showed up to support her.
- Rainbow almost immediately turns the praise to Fluttershy when Spitfire was congratulating her, even going as far as referring to Fluttershy as her "number one flyer". It's a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming for so many reasons and really shows how much Rainbow cares about Fluttershy.
- There's also when Rainbow first asks for Fluttershy's help, leading to this now infamous exchange that sounds like Fluttershy confirming a certain lifestyle choice, and Rainbow being overjoyed to hear it. She's saying "I'm game," but that's not always how it sounds.
Rainbow Dash: You will!?
Fluttershy: I will.
Rainbow Dash: You're gay!?
Fluttershy: I'm gay.
Rainbow Dash grabs Fluttershy and flies through the air holding her.
Rainbow Dash: ALRIGHT!
- "Dragon Quest" opens (what is it with these two and episode openings?) with Rainbow Dash and Twilight Sparkle trying to get Fluttershy to go see the dragon migration, when Rainbow Dash mentions when she and Fluttershy went to go see the butterfly migration together. Casual outing between friends, or really boring date? On top of that, Dashie has a picture of them on the migration trip together that she has been carrying around. Photo to remember the date, perhaps? (While probably unintentional, Rainbow's line of vision in that photo is actually directed right at Fluttershy's cutie mark. So she actually was watching butterflies, just not the ones passing in the air.)
- During the attack of the changelings in "A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2", Rainbow Dash almost kisses Fluttershy on the nose when helping her up. What sells this is that Fluttershy briefly closes her eyes as though she expected to be kissed, and that a bit of background noise sounds a lot like a kiss.
- "Keep Calm and Flutter On" not only has Rainbow acting more like a jealous and overprotective girlfriend when she sees Fluttershy being nice to Discord, but Fluttershy also called her "Dashie", something she never did before.
- "Daring Don't" has yet another opening with the two. An excited Rainbow Dash constantly touches Fluttershy in some manner, right to holding her hooves.
- "Magic Duel" had an especially sweet moment when Rainbow displayed unwavering faith in Fluttershy's abilities.
- There was a bit going on between them in "Rainbow Falls", such as Fluttershy (along with Bulk Biceps) being part of Rainbow's three-pony pegasi relay team, and saying she was competing for Rainbow (and Ponyville, as well).
- In "Trade Ya" Fluttershy does everything in her power to make Dash happy by getting her the Daring Do book she wanted, and when Dash realizes she's traded Fluttershy for the book she immediately fights to get her back and doesn't give the book a second thought. Plus she gets Fluttershy the bird call she wanted at the end.
- At the end of "Rainbow Rocks", when Twilight is departing the human world, human!Fluttershy is seen holding human!Rainbow Dash’s arm.
- There are a few moments between the two of them throughout the movie. Most especially is human!Rainbow finally choosing one of human!Fluttershy's songs to perform.
- When Dash is sulking because of Tank needing to brumate and refusing to talk to anyone about it, Fluttershy knows exactly what to say to get through to her and make her deal with the situation so she can move on.
- "Friends Forever #18" has the two go to their flight camp reunion. At the climax of the story, Fluttershy ducks under the table they're sitting at (itself a rather suggestive image), and Rainbow goes after her. Fluttershy pours her heart out about how awful flight camp was for her, and Rainbow consoles she's moved on from that and is still very cool in her own ways. The scene is topped off by Fluttershy giving Rainbow a tight hug, their mouths so close they almost kiss. Also, while they were each invited separately, it could be inferred the two attended the reunion as a date.
- "The Cutie Re-Mark" puts emphases on the importance of their interactions at flight camp as fillies, as the slightest change in their past resulted in horrific Alternate Timelines. Also, at one point, an alternate version of Applejack mentioned the ship name "FlutterDash" when talking to Twilight about the whereabouts of their friends.
- In "Flutter Brutter" Fluttershy's parents and her brother Zephyr have all somehow been convinced for years that Rainbow has a huge crush on Zephyr. One wonders if they could actually be misinterpreting her feelings for someone else close by. Plus, Rainbow suddenly stops in midair, causing Fluttershy to smack face-first into her rear end.
- In "Fluttershy Leans In", Rainbow Dash actually tears up while listening to Fluttershy talk about her dream of making an animal sanctuary. She even describes it as "pretty awesome".
- In "Fame and Misfortune", during the "Flawless" song, Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy hug and press their cheeks together at one point, with their coat color behind the other pony.
Rainbow Dash with Applejack
Rainbow Dash and Applejack's Vitriolic Best Buds routine shifts into Slap-Slap-Kiss on occasions. On a side note, you might notice a trend here with Rainbow...
- "Fall Weather Friends" might as well have been called "Belligerent Sexual Tension: The Episode", with the two going to ever greater lengths to best the other and prove their superiority. Even the lesson at the end wasn't that they were constantly competing, but them taking it too seriously was threatening their relationship, and the episode ends with them galloping off into the sunset together. It also features a very exploitable split-second shot of Applejack leaping onto Rainbow's back as they near the finish line.
- In "Bridle Gossip", Applejack fashions a crude set of bit-and-reins and rides an upside-down flying Dashie around.
- In "The Mysterious Mare Do Well" Rainbow Dash "immortalizes" Applejack as her best friend, in the process bringing their faces very close together (which is conveniently obscured by a camera flash). So close, in fact, that it can easily mistaken for them kissing.
- In "The Last Roundup", Rainbow Dash is depicted as the one pony closest to Applejack, including being the first one to notice when she's lying, and tackling her at the end of the chase scene, with a briefly triumphant expression.
- Their human counterparts, when compared to the other girls post-break-up, the way Applejack talks about Rainbow Dash makes her sound like a bitter ex-girlfriend. The two are also the only ones to apologize to each other on-screen and they even seal it with a hug.
- In "Castle Mane-ia", when Rainbow Dash feels a hoof around her, she grins at the thought of it being Applejack. Meghan McCarthy left a comment on it.
- When AJ is forced to sacrifice her prize apple in "Bats", Rainbow is the only member of the group who actually takes a moment to console her over it (as opposed to say, Twilight, who was the one responsible for Fluttershy's transformation in the first place).
- In "Return Of Harmony Part 2" a newly restored Dash tackles AJ to the ground and pins her down (to ask what the situation is, but still).
- Issue 25 of the comic opens with the characters riding a train to Canter Creek. While AJ appears to be reading something, Rainbow is slumped against her, fast asleep and wearing her hat.
- In "Applebuck Season", during AJ's award ceremony, some of the characters take it in turns to compliment Applejack's hard work and kind offers to help them out. Then Rainbow (and this is early season one, pre-Character Development, major narcissist Rainbow, bear in mind) comes in and begins gushing, nay, fangirling over AJ and how awesome her athleticism is. It's pretty much the same tone she uses when talking about the Wonderbolts.
- Make New Friends but Keep Discord first shows Applejack appearing to have No Sense of Personal Space around Rainbow, happily using her tail as a tissue when getting choked up (with Rainbow only appearing mildly annoyed). Then later at the Gala, Rainbow suggests that they "hit the dance floor" as a way of excusing herself from Discord and his weirdness.
- In the opening song of Rainbow Rocks, "Better than Ever", the girls all sing about how things have improved between them and the school at large. Then we get the start of the second verse:
Rainbow: There was a time we couldn't see past the differences.Applejack: That separated you and me and it left us on our own.
- Obviously they're referencing their argument from the first film, but consider this. In the first film there was no indication that the two had any falling out with the rest of the group and stopped being friends. Yet apparently they seem to consider that not being with each other is tantamount to being completely alone.
- In Legends of Everfree the main characters are paired off to share tents with each other while at camp. Applejack and Rainbow discover that they're going to be sharing and are notably the only two to appear outwardly excited by this arrangement.
- While everyone else in 28 Pranks Later accuse Dash's pranks of being mean and insensitive, Applejack's seems less bothered, merely dismissing them as lazy and easy. This seems to be the only thing Dash pays any attention to as she proceeds to go on a massive pranking spree to prove how not lazy she can be. Her efforts going forward can easily be read as Dash trying to awkwardly impress A.J and win her approval.
Our heroine, in her unending quest for friendship, can get very close to the ponies around her.
- As pictured above, in "Lesson Zero", Twilight Sparkle asks Rainbow Dash not to "hide her feelings" by cupping her face with both forehooves in a manner that could be interpreted romantically when taken in combination with her words. Humorously, the context is that Twilight is actually talking about Rainbow Dash's feelings towards Applejack.
- Near the end of the episode Pinkie Pie nuzzles Twilight, the only pony to do so. (Twilight also nuzzled Applejack and Rainbow Dash respectively in "Dragonshy" and "Over a Barrel".)
- "May the Best Pet Win!" has some amusing Accidental Innuendo in this scene:
Rainbow Dash: (to the pets) Alright, now these games will determine which one of you has the most important qualities I'm looking for in a pet. Speed, agility, guts, style. Coolness. Awesomeness. And radicalness.
Twilight Sparkle: Aren't those all the same thing?
Rainbow Dash: You would think that, Twilight. And that's why you would never qualify to be my pet.
Twilight: Rainbow Dash! Were you following me?
- "The Ticket Master" has Rainbow hovering by Twilight when asking about the ticket along with this line:
Rainbow Dash: Yes-I mean no-I mean, maybe!
- "The Cutie Re-Mark" has Twilight trying to convince filly Rainbow in the past to perform the Sonic Rainboom, leaning rather too heavily on their own closeness considering this Rainbow has no idea who she is. She has No Sense of Personal Space and ends by giving Rainbow a very suggestive look after claiming to know her in the future, making filly Rainbow feel quite weirded-out.
- In "A Canterlot Wedding Part 2", Twilight asks Shining Armor how he managed to get Cadance to marry him. He says that he mentioned that if she did, she'd get an "awesome sister". So Cadance married a guy just to get closer to his sister?
- In Part 1, Twilight's first reaction to reuniting with the fake Cadance is to wiggle her rump in her face. Later, the real Cadance returns the favour, although the actual wiggling occurs off-screen. (Sure, It Makes Sense in Context, but wow.)
- In "Three's a Crowd" Twilight makes quite a big deal over how happy she is that she and Cadance will get to spend time together, and how frustrated she is that Discord tries to get between them. After she makes a remark about finally spending some quality time together, Cadance does this sort of awkward grin-nod, and out of context it looks kind of funny.
- During the "You'll Play a Part" song from "Twilight's Kingdom - Part 1", Cadance tells Twilight "You're gifted and you are strong," at which Twilight blushes.
- Twilight is intensely reverent of Princess Celestia, well beyond even the usual level of grovelling obedience most ponies display towards her, and is utterly terrified of disappointing her or seeming "unworthy" in any way (as shown in "Swarm of the Century", "Bird in the Hoof", and especially "Lesson Zero").
Celestia: I loved having you as a student. ...I am embarrassed to admit it, but I was afraid if you made friends, you wouldn't need me anymore.
- In her flashback in "The Cutie Mark Chronicles", Twilight says that Celestia raising the sun was "the most amazing, most wonderful thing [she's] ever seen," and was the inspiration for her to pursue both magic and research as passions.
- Twilight says she wants to go to the Grand Galloping Gala to talk magic with Celestia, but she has already been regularly doing this by sending friendship lessons by Spikemail◊. Their wording for each other can be interpreted as more than professional:
Princess Celestia: Well, I want you right by my side the entire evening, so we'll have plenty of time together.
Twilight Sparkle: That's just what I was hoping you'd say.
- They later get their chance for a dance together at the end of Make New Friends but keep Discord, as Celestia cheekily pushes Twilight onto the dance floor after all the trouble with Discord was resolved.
- "The Crystal Empire - Part 2" shows that Twilight's worst, deepest fear is Celestia rejecting her and no longer being able to be her student.
- When Twilight sees Celestia in the alternate dimension she gets transported to after finishing the spell in "Magical Mystery Cure", her first reaction is to run over and give her a hug. Even when Twilight is transformed into an alicorn princess, she is upset at first, because she thinks she won't be Celestia's student anymore.
- Now that Twilight is a princess and no longer her student, the hugs give way to a PDA in "Princess Twilight Sparkle: Part 1".
Princess Celestia: You may no longer be my student, Princess Twilight, but I hope you know that I will always be here if you need me. Just as I hope that you will always be there when I need you.
- After Cadence, Luna, and Celestia transfer their magic to Twilight for safekeeping in "Twilight's Kingdom Part 2", Twilight's first instinct upon recovery is to rush over and hug the exhausted Celestia comfortingly. She's even crying as she does so.
- "Celestial Advice" shows Celestia is concerned about Twilight not needing her anymore, enough to constantly make excuses about not sending Twilight to Ponyville to face Nightmare Moon. There's even a slightly teasing Bait-and-Switch comment:
- In "MMMMystery on the Friendship Express", Pinkie and Twilight take turns to roleplay as Sherlock Holmes and Watson (famous for their own Ho Yay), and even share the Bubble Pipe! (Though Twilight makes sure to clean said pipe before using it, so that specific moment may be deliberately subverted.)
Twilight: ...And this is the book I got on the day I met you.
- At the end of "Feeling Pinkie Keen" the two of them are holding their hoofs together while they're reconciling.
- Pinkie and Twilight get a bit at the end of "Trade Ya" when Pinkie reminds Twilight of the sentimental value of the books she's trying to get rid of.
- In "Luna Eclipsed", Twilight lures Pinkie into a dark alley with candy, and when she's out of view of the crowd she jams her against a wall with a hoof to her mouth and tells her "No shrieking. No screaming or squealing either." Twilight then shows Pinkie she isn't alone, at which point Pinkie flees in terror, prompting Twilight to tackle her and pin her to the ground. note
- At the very end of "The Crystal Empire - Part 2", Rarity winds up holding Twilight's hoof.
- Trixie and Twilight have amazing Foe Yay in "Magic Duel", and by the end of the episode they manage to become friends.
Twilight Sparkle: I can't stop thinking about Trixie!
- During "Dragonshy," Applejack saves Twilight's life from an avalanche and gets a neat little nuzzle in return for her heroics.
- Speaking of these two, look at how her friends react when Twilight becomes an alicorn in "Magical Mystery Cure." Most of them are, understandably, either stunned or excited, but Applejack looks sad. Why would Twilight gaining wings and becoming a princess hurt the Earth pony so much? Did she fear this would create a gap between them? A case of "I can't be lieve a girl like you would notice me now"?
- In "Princess Twilight Sparkle Part 2," Applejack's the one who's so worried about Twilight that she suggests the latter stay behind for her own safety while the rest of them risk their lives.
- In "Applebuck Season," Applejack eventually stops being stubborn and asks Twilight for help, something the episode has made clear has always been impossible for her.
- The Equestria Girls version of Twilight is surprisingly flirty in the "Perfect Day for Fun" short. First she drags Fluttershy around the carnival by the hand as though they're on a date. When the group has gotten together and they're all taking pictures in the photo booth, one picture depicts what can only be described as Twilight copping a feel! She has her hand very clearly touching Applejack's chest (who in response looks very shocked). Finally at the end, the group ride a ferris wheel together and Twilight has her arm around Fluttershy's shoulder, again in a very "date-like" way.
- "Amending Fences" reveals that Moondancer, the pony whose party Twilight blew off in the pilot, was turned into a bitter loner by her not showing up. Many fans pointed out that this is a rather extreme reaction to a friend not coming to a party, but not so much if Moondancer was secretly in love with her.
- Possibly adding to this is the fact that, in the past, Moondancer was a Palette Swap of Twilight, with the same mane and tail style. Perhaps she styled them that way due to having a crush on her?
- The old group photo◊ that Spike gives Moondancer shows everyone talking and laughing while Moondancer looks at Twilight and Twilight reads.
- Applejack says that any relative of Twilight's is practically family.
- In "Newbie Dash" Fluttershy is blown into Twilight's lap when the Wonderbolts fly by, and they hold hooves afterwards.
- As of My Little Pony: The Movie (2017) , Twilight now has another unicorn Shadow Archetype shipped with her who is Tempest. Sheesh Twilight, are you secretly using your adventures to find your future special somepony?
Twilight Sparkle with Sunset Shimmer
From the My Little Pony: Equestria Girls franchise, Twilight Sparkle (both of them) and Sunset Shimmer have enough chemistry it's easy to forget the three technically have male crushes. Subsequent works take it to the point they seems afterthoughts to the blooming friendship Twilight(s) and Sunset share.
- Sunset's status as the Big Bad in the first film allows for Foe Yay as well as Ho Yay, particularly since Sunset seems to want to steal Twilight's life because she's jealous of her for having the respect and power she doesn't. The result is some scenes look like aggressive flirting or at least intimidation on Sunset's part.
- The moment Twilight returns through the portal in Rainbow Rocks, Sunset seems to be expecting Twilight to take her hand, but shies away from her because she feels unworthy to be around her.
- With her still being an outsider to the Humane Five, Sunset is at her happiest in the film when she's talking to Twilight, and seems more comfortable around her than the others. The look on her face when Twilight compliments her on thinking of a method to counter the Dazzlings' spell has to be seen to be believed◊.
- During the film's climax, Twilight calls out for Sunset's help against the Dazzlings, and Sunset steps up next to her and takes Twilight's hand to pull to her feet. Then they fall into a duet together...
- At the end of the film, Sunset writes to Twilight "Dear Princess Twilight. Missing you already, and I hope you'll be back soon."
- The crowner of it all is the sleepover, while they are both up at night, equally stressed by the day's events in the kitchen, where the two of them have a moment of personal bonding.
Sunset: Hey, Twilight. You're up late.
Twilight: Just looking over the counter-spell. We only get one shot at this. It has to be perfect.
Sunset: We really are lucky you're here.
Twilight: That's what everyone keeps telling me.
Sunset: (casually glancing at Pinkie's fridge) Who could possibly need this much whipped cream? (glances back to Twilight) Must be nice to have everyone always looking to you for answers to their problems... instead of waiting for you to cause a problem.
Twilight: Just because everyone expects something from you doesn't mean it's guaranteed to happen.
Sunset: Well, that doesn't stop them from expecting it.
Twilight: Which only makes things harder because the last thing you want to do is...
Both: ...let everybody down.
- Said kitchen scene also includes Twilight calling out to Sunset, as if to say something private before she goes to leave, then backs down and says "nevermind." Can't Spit It Out, much?
- That's also not getting into Sunset's pyjama top falling off her shoulder as she squirts whipped cream onto her thumb as they talk. The imagery there speaks for itself.
- At the start of the music video "Friendship Through the Ages", a very elegantly dressed Twilight is playing a grand piano, which Sunset is sitting on watching her. They stare into each other's eyes smiling, and then Twilight gets up and for a moment, it seriously looks as though she's moving to take Sunset's hands in order to dance with her. She doesn't, but strokes Sunset's arm, which isn't without implications of its own. The classical piano music used for the segment, and the imagery, give it a noticeably more romantic tone than the rest of the song where Sunset interacts with the other five.
- "My Past Is Not Today" features a few lines where Sunset sings about how Twilight helped her perform her Heel–Face Turn. Although without context, some of the lyrics sound rather romantic, like Sunset sees Twilight as a love interest that brought out the best in her.
"When I began to fall / And I lost the path ahead / That's when your friendship found me / And it lifted me instead."
"But when it disappeared / And I found myself alone / That's when you came and got me / And it felt like I was home."
- Although there's a perfectly justified in-story reason for Sunset Shimmer constantly writing to Twilight in "Friendship Games", it's very easy to see it as a girlfriend worried that their partner isn't receiving their calls. She's constantly asking Twilight how she's doing, compares herself to Twi in a discouraging manner, believing she'd have all the answers, and after the first two attempts don't work, she straight up attempts going through the portal in search of Princess Twilight, something she's never even considered doing since the first film.
- In a deleted scene, Sunset meets with Twilight at the cafe to discuss things with her, and pours her heart out to Twilight about how she doesn't understand this world's magic and is considering returning to Equestria, and is just confused about what she should do. As Sunset stares into her drink with the camera acting as her POV, Twilight's hands reach into the frame to cover Sunset's, and the camera pans up to see Twilight smiling at her.
- When Sunset sees Human Twilight for the first time, she mistakes her for Princess Twilight and smiles at her in a very heartfelt way.
- That's not to say Sunset and Human Twilight don't have their own share of subtext.
Twilight: I'm sorry! It just started absorbing energy on its own! But I'm not sure how!
- The climax of the film, when Sunset talks down Midnight Sparkle, which includes taking her hand and telling her "let me show you there's another way. The same way someone once did for me.".
- The human Twilight is implied to be younger than Sunset, combined with a very shy personality and awkward attempts at conversation, it's easy to see a senpai-like dynamic. In the scene where SS asks Twi what the meaning of her experiments are, Twilight can only stammer and feel intimidated by the other girl.
- One almost gets the feeling Sunset's projecting her own admiration turned anger on the human Twilight when she demands to know if she knows any way to help, and calls her out for not thinking of the consequences of her actions when it came to how her device worked and endangering the lives of her friends.
Sunset: What do you mean you don't know how?!
Twilight: It also causes these corresponding rifts to appear! I don't know how that works either.
Sunset: Is there anything you do know?! Like how to get our magic back?! Or how to fix the portal to Equestria?!
Sunset: You're supposed to be so smart, but did you ever think you shouldn't be messing around with things you don't understand?!
Twilight: But I wanna understand!
Sunset: But you don't! And worst of all, you put the lives of my friends in danger!
- Let us not forget Sunset and Twilight's singing together. In the original version of What More is Out There, both Sunset Shimmer and the human Twilight Sparkle actively feel like they don't have a place in their lives, and even has a distant duet. It's a stretch, but not impossible to see it as a song of romantic yearning.
- In a similar way, the credits song Right There in Front of Me has Twi and Sunset sing together as the focus, about finding their inner confidence and as per usual comparing themselves with each other as a parallel.
- In the "Twilight Sparkle's Sleepover Surprise" chapter book, by coincidence at the sleepover, Twilight and Sunset end up having their nails painted the same random colors. What follows is as quoted:
"The girls laughed, but Twilight Sparkle was so happy. She and Sunset Shimmer matched! It was perfect."
- As seen in the novelization of Legend of Everfree (that came out before the movie), even though the movie has the Love Triangle between (human) Twilight Sparkle, Flash Sentry, and Timber Spruce, Sunset Shimmer seems to care more about Twilight Sparkle's well being, than either of her love interests do.
"Sunset's thoughts: What was he up to? She had to find out. She had to protect Twilight. "
- Sunset in general gets very touchy with Twilight over the course of the movie, on many occasions even putting her hand over Twilight's shoulder and pulling her closer in.
- When Twilight has a Catapult Nightmare, Sunset, herself asleep, immediately jumps out of bed and takes a fighting position to defend her before even waking up◊.
- In the previews it was also shown that it was not Timber, Flash or any of the Humane 5 was the first to notice something is wrong with Twilight, but Sunset Shimmer, and as seen above, she is quite protective of Twilight. To the point that when Rarity accidentally makes Twilight feel bad, by bringing up the Friendship Games, Sunset outright scolds Rarity for that, and tells the girls to not bring up the Friendship Games for Twilight's well-being.
- Twilight directly refers to Sunset's "Daydream Shimmer" form from the previous film as being beautiful.
- When Twilight finally gets a date with Timber at the end, Sunset gives her a teasing look that can very easily come off as flirtatious.
- In that same moment, Sunset blushes at Twilight after she's given a playful punch on the arm!
- It continues in Mirror Magic where Sunset makes some very giddy facial expressions as she writes to Princess Twilight. When she returns to Equestria, she borders on distressed when she finds out Twilight is away.
- In Forgotten Friendship, Sunset is hit hardest by Human Twilight not remembering Sunset's role in the Friendship Games. It's also quite telling that, when her memories are being drained by Wallflower, Sunset cries out "Twilight, don't forget me!" in anguish before she reverts to her pre-movie state. When Sunset gets her memory back, the first person she recognizes is Twilight.
- On Human Twilight's side of the equation, she's the first person to approach Sunset after Sunset gets her memories wiped and the first to reaffirm their friendship.
- Not to be outdone by her human counterpart, Princess Twilight's brief time with Sunset involved lots of scenes of the two getting very close to each other and blushing.
- Rarity has a notable tendency to be physically affectionate with other girls, and freely throws around flirty eyes and intimate dialogue as part of her 'camp fashion designer' persona. Still, there are a few examples that stand out.
- The start of "Sweet And Elite" features Rarity profusely kissing Princess Celestia's hooves, thanking her for everything. For her part Celestia looks highly uncomfortable with the affection... while nervously glancing between Rarity and her bed.
- In the first episode, "Mare in the Moon", Rarity drags Twilight to her house to forcibly dress her in several dresses, and starts gushing over her after learning she's from Canterlot, and gets really close to her cheek to cheek saying they're going to be "the best of friends".
- She does this again to Twilight in "The Ticket Master". This time, she rubs her head against Twilight's neck while saying "After all, we are the best of friends, are we not?" before forcing her into a dress she made for the gala.
- In the beginning of "The Return of Harmony", Rarity comes to the orchard to see if she can do anything to help "without getting wet or dirty or out from under [her] umbrella." Not one minute later, she hands over the umbrella to Twilight completely unprompted after Twilight's spell fails.
- The final scene of "The Crystal Empire" involves Rarity starting off the 'Twilight is awesome' song, approaching her alone and tilting up her chin with a hoof, making goo goo eyes at her throughout, and eventually cuddling with her inside a heart-shaped window while putting her hoof on hers. Not to mention the camera focus on said hoof-holding, or Twilight's blush as Rarity approaches.
- "Princess Twilight Sparkle" opens with everyone looking at a stained glass depiction of Twilight at her coronation.
Rarity: [turning to Twilight] You look amazing, darling. [turning back to the window, practically swooning] They really captured your regality.
- "Canterlot Boutique" reveals that the window inspired a new dress design.
- In "Rarity Investigates" there is some mild Rainbow Dash/Rarity subtext, some of the comments on the episode said it seems like they're going out on a date or something. Their overall interactions were incredibly sweet, including a very cute scene of Rarity applying lotion on Dash via Nose Boop.
- In "The Gift of the Maud Pie," Pinkie's first thought when Rarity and Maud call her over is that they want to take a swan boat ride together.
- In "Applejack's "Day" Off", the spa pony Aloe calls Rarity "her favorite" (customer) and kisses her on the cheek twice, while she just gives a hug to Applejack.
- In "It Isn't the Mane Thing About You," Rarity ends up restyling her damaged mane into a multicolored mohawk. Rainbow is understandably very taken with it.
Rarity with Applejack
- The Tomboy and Girly Girl dynamic between Applejack and Rarity sometimes borders on romantic tension, particularly in "Look Before You Sleep". One scene includes them sharing a bed, and when they're frightened by the thunder — and later by Twilight's ghost story — the first thing they do is grab each other in panic.
- During Rarity's nightmare of a date in "The Best Night Ever," they stop by Applejack's snack stand. Blue Blood refuses to buy Rarity anything, but Applejack assures her, "I've got ya' covered."
Rarity: Thank you, Applejack. At least somepony here has good manners...
- In "It's About Time", Rarity works alongside Applejack when they help to repair the Ponyville dam, and she even goes so far as to mop off◊ AJ's perspiration! And then after scouting the perimeter, she picks the leaves out of AJ's mane - did the leaves get in there while they were looking for "new positions", one wonders?
- In "The Crystal Empire - Part 2", we have this exchange:
Rarity: Oh, I just so wish it [the crystalization] was permanent! Did you see how my mane just absolutely sparkled?
Applejack: But, good things are better when they're a "rarity". (winks).
Rarity: Awwwwwww. (giggles).
- The Rarity issue of the the micro series comics shows Rarity going on vacation... and bringing along a picture of Applejack to put on her nightstand.
- In Equestria Girls during the Rainbow Dash 'wub' face scene, Rarity is clasping Applejack's arm like one does on a romantic walk or for a date. Especially suggestive since it's Prom Night. And when the girls transform back to their normal selves, Applejack can be seen holding Rarity's hand.
- Applejack and Rarity both hate it when the other isn't themselves in "Simple Ways", and they both mention how much they know each other.
Rarity: (speaking to Applejack) ...You probably know me better than I know myself.
- Applejack and Rarity spend the whole day in "Trade Ya" arguing over a trade each one wants, taking all their collected items to trade, but instead of trying to convince the other that their item is more important they instead argue that the other should go get their item. In the end neither get their wanted item and instead trade half their stash to get an item similar to what the other wanted.
- In Issue #25 of the main comic series, Rarity gushes over Sheriff Tumbleweed's hat, which Applejack points out is the same as hers with a quite irritated look, just like someone dealing with an Oblivious to Love crush. Or who suspects their partner's eye is wandering, whichever you prefer.
- Rarity and Applejack head to the Gala together in "Make New Friends but Keep Discord", with vaguely disgruntled expressions as the Cutie Mark Crusaders run past excitedly, as though they were on a date that was being disrupted by the need to babysit their little sisters.
- In "Made in Manehattan," Rarity has No Sense of Personal Space around Applejack in multiple scenes, and puts a picture of their faces with a heart between them on her "friendship booth." In the end scene, after buying Applejack a new hat, Rarity and A.J. clasp hooves and stare into each others eyes, much the same way Lyra and Bon-Bon did in "Slice Of Life."
- Rarity's behavior towards Applejack in "Applejack's "Day" Off" come off as someone who's annoyed about being unable to spend time with a Workaholic significant other. Not to mention both Aloe and Twilight being eager to get them to spend more time together.
- In "P.P.O.V. (Pony Point of View)" Applejack's story portrays Rarity dressed as Rose from Titanic. Whose love interest was named Jack.
- In Legends of Everfree, during the battle with Gloriosa, Rarity protects Applejack with her barrier and, sometime after, when she is exhausted and practically fainting trying to hold up the dome shield, AJ helps her with an embrace. In the final song both hold hands in some parts, notable as they are the only two to do so despite "Holding Hands" being a line in the song.
- During the "Flawless" song in "Fame and Misfortune", Rarity sings her part while laying on what seems to be a silhouetted piece of furniture. The "chair" is then revealed to be Applejack, whose part starts with a line about being "too eager to please".
Rarity with Fluttershy
Rarity and Fluttershy are the most feminine two from the mane six. They have a lot in common but only a minority of the fandom ships them. Although, there are a few hints that could be referred to as "Rarishy moments".
- In "Green Isn't Your Color" Rarity seems more upset and jealous about Fluttershy's career forcing her to miss a (for lack of a better word) date with Rarity than Fluttershy accidentally becoming part of the fashion spotlight instead of her.
- In "Putting Your Hoof Down" Rarity repeatedly calls Fluttershy "sweetie".
- "Filli Vanilli" shows Fluttershy and Rarity giving an adorable nuzzle. Both episodes feature Rarity putting a lot of effort into trying to gently coax Fluttershy out of her shell, compared to most of the other characters who are usually either far more blunt about Fluttershy's hang ups if not outright oblivious.
- In "Bats", Rarity was on Applejack's side, but she comforted Fluttershy all the way through the episode and she kind of tries to justify her choice in supporting Applejack, as if she felt it was mandatory for her to agree with Fluttershy but her other principles were against it. After the song finished, she came over to Fluttershy, gently helped her up and literally apologized for not being on her side.
Lyra Heartstrings with Sweetie Drops/Bon Bon
Sweetie Drops/Bon Bon and Lyra Heartstrings, two background mares who appear together in many episodes, are widely assumed to be either best friends or a couple. Bon Bon's eyes are emerald and Lyra's eyes are golden, more intense hues of the other's coat, as if to hint each only has eyes for each other. Episodes from the second season onwards include apparently deliberate nods to this phenomenon:
- Wide shots of the town common early in "Hearts and Hooves Day" feature a number of pony pairs standing around. Lyra and Bon Bon are among these pairs, though there's another Bon Bon paired with Shoeshine.
- During "Putting Your Hoof Down", when Fluttershy was at the market, Bon Bon was wearing a saddlebag with Lyra's cutie mark◊ as a decoration. Lyra was also sighted seated and slouched forward at a table with a somewhat grouchy expression◊. Later in the scene, Bon Bon is sighted seated with Lyra at the table, and the green unicorn has cheered up considerably◊. Whatever she was unhappy about, clearly Bon Bon being there makes it all better. Word of God has confirmed that that one was intentional (though not necessarily romantic).
- The comic con poster showing many season one characters deliberately puts them together, looking towards each other and smiling.
- In a Funny Background Event in "Secret Of My Excess", Bon Bon and Lyra are standing very close together and appear as if they're going to kiss... and then Derpy pops out of a nearby well, ruining the moment.
- My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Rainbow Rocks gives us this image◊ of their human counterparts smooshing their faces together as the two play a piano duet.
- The episode "Slice of Life" has them saying that they are best friends; however, they keep giving each other bedroom eyes and their interactions feel like a married couple.
Lyra: (sad background music) B-b-but the lunches! The-the long talks! The benches we sat on! (starts to cry, ears fold down) None of that was real?!Bon Bon: It was all real. You're my (puts hoof on Lyra's cheek, while Lyra leans her head on it and puts her own hoof on Bon Bon's "arm". At this point they're nose-to-nose and looking straight into each other's half-lidded, VERY seductive-looking gazes) very. Best. Friend.
- The fact that they keep Lampshade Hanging their "best friends" status multiple times makes it seem like it's explicitly intended to be a case of Suspiciously Specific Denial to invoke Is That What They're Calling It Now? reactions from the fans.
- On top of that, it takes the status of their canon relationship from "they stand next to each other about two or three times per season" to "they're best friends who give each other more loving gazes and gentle caresses than any of the canon married couples, share their deepest secrets, and possibly live together."
- In Party Pooped Bon Bon is seen placing a flower in Lyra's hair◊.
- In Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep?, Lyra and Bon Bon show up in the dream fused together, Catdog style. They don't seem to mind.
- In the My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Friendship Games short titled "All's Fair in Love and Friendship Games", Lyra and Bon Bon are very close to each other including finishing each others sentences and walking away arm in arm. The short ends with a heart iris closing around the two hugging.
- For Valentine's Day 2016, the official Facebook page for My Little Pony posted this image◊ depicting Official Couples Cadance and Shining Armor, Cranky and Matilda... and Lyra with Bon Bon.note .
- For Valentine's Day 2018, Hasbro's official Youtube channel put together a Valentine's Day playlist, with "All's Fair in Love and Friendship Games" (see above) as the first video.
- In "Rock Solid Friendship", Lyra and Bon Bon are walking along happily when Pinkie Pie grabs Lyra and tries to pretend she's a rock shaped like Lyra and shoots her a Death Glare until she plays along. Bon Bon grabs Lyra and protectively pushes her away while shooting Pinkie a Death Glare back.
- "Triple Threat" features a scene where Spike is desperately searching for the friendship problem he has to solve and at one point encounters Lyra and Bon Bon bickering Like an Old Married Couple over cupcake flavors.
- The human versions have been seen holding hands in one of the Equestria Girls shorts.
- In the beginning of "The Maud Couple", Pinkie is sitting between a quite irritated looking Lyra and Bon Bon, like she's interrupting their date.
- Rainbow interrupts another date in "Grannies Gone Wild," barging in on them in a photo booth.
- "The Breakup Breakdown" is another "Hearts and Hooves Day" episode. Who do we see giving each other gifts and then happily glomping each other? Every other pair shown in that sequence was male/female, and this time, we don’t even get the expected "best friends" line.
Starlight Glimmer with Trixie Lulamoon
- Starlight Glimmer and Trixie quickly bond over being reformed villains who others are still wary of, causing Twilight to get suspicious of what they could get up to together that at times comes off more like a love triangle, like when Twilight is spying on them from the bushes and Starlight sarcastically calls it "completely non-creepy." Trixie ends up possibly being Driven to Suicide when she screws the relationship up, and just before the deed calls out to Starlight that if she can forgive her, "Let's be great and powerful together."
- It gets even more blatant in the Season 6 finale, where Starlight chooses to go back to the town with Trixie as backup. Trixie even helps Starlight bail when she gets a little too stressed out. There's also that one moment where Trixie presses her snout to Starlight's in what is basically a kiss.
Trixie: "I've got your flank!"
- "All Bottled Up" is another StarTrix episode, which makes Starlight seem like she's trying to hide her discontent with her significant other. On the other end, Trixie is especially touchy-feely with Starlight especially in the beginning, and she ends the conflict off with this emotional and almost flirtatious statement.
Trixie: "The Starlight I love is passionate, lively and yeah, sometimes a little angry. Those are my favourite parts of you! That, and the fact that you forgive me every time."
- In "Uncommon Bond" Trixie shows Starlight and Sunburst a new trick. Sunburst has an excited smile, while Starlight's is rather more...intimate.
- In "To Change a Changeling," when Starlight boasts of having teleported to the Changeling hive:
She may have started as a villain, but over the years, Sunset Shimmer has amassed enough Shipping Fuel to rival the main series' Mane Six. While her relationship with both versions of Twilight Sparkle is the most prominent, she still has plenty of moments with other characters.
- During the motocross race in Friendship Games, when Sunset is knocked off her bike and is about to be eaten by a carnivorous plant, Rainbow Dash races back to Sunset and grabs her in the nick of time. Sunset, riding from behind, happily exclaims "Dash, you saved me!" In Forgotten Friendship, when Sunset reads Rainbow's mind, she's devastated when she finds out that this memory had been erased.
- The third Equestria Girls - Magical Movie Night special, "Mirror Magic", has put the idea of Starlight Glimmer and Sunset Shimmer into people's heads. Both being ponies-turned-into-humans and their shared background as ex-jerks gives them a common ground not shared by other Equestria Girls characters plus they connected very quickly.
- Human Pinkie Pie seems to be extra touchy-feely with Sunset, often pressing herself against Sunset or just getting really close to her. She also has a bizarre knack for shooting some rather...flirtatious◊ looks.
- Much like Starlight, there was already common ground between Sunset Shimmer and Trixie, being ex-jerks who were foils to Twilight Sparkle (though human Trixie lacks her pony counterpart's history with Twilight), making it easy to ship them. Then came Forgotten Friendship, where Trixie's human counterpart becomes Sunset's emotional support when almost all the students of Canterlot High, including the Rainbooms, lose their memories of Sunset's Heel–Face Turn and shun her, finding common ground in being left out and underappreciated and doing all in her power to help Sunset find the magic stone that stole everyone's memories.
- Wallflower Blush's actions toward Sunset in Forgotten Friendship seem rather extreme since Sunset's only crime against Wallflower is ignoring her, which is what every character has been doing for years. However, much like with Twilight and Moondancer, some have noted that her actions might make a little more sense if Wallflower had been harboring a crush on Sunset and was hurt that her crush doesn't acknowledge her existence, much less her feelings. Her sweet smile and blush when she holds Sunset's hand only adds to it.
- In "One Bad Apple", Scootaloo gleefully rubs her rear end against Babs Seed's flank, topped off by Scootaloo's wings snapping open.
- A blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment in "Fall Weather Friends", in which Derpy Hooves (before the animators started intentionally derping her eyes) drops a rose, which Fluttershy just happens to catch.
- Fluttershy reaches near Even the Girls Want Her status in "Green Isn't Your Color". Rarity wants her to model for her in the first place because "nopony is going to have [Fluttershy's] elegance and poise". Twilight says that "on her own Fluttershy could never do something unattractive" (hence her plan to use magic and make her do something unattractive). Photo Finish spends almost her entire appearance fan-girling over Fluttershy ("Yes! Even her sneezes are graceful!"). And the main reason Fluttershy hates being a model is the hordes of mostly female fans that flock to her wherever she goes, and is getting between her quality time with Rarity.
- The ending of "The Return of Harmony Part 2" is a shot-for-shot homage to the ending of Star Wars: A New Hope. Complete with Applejack winking at Princess Celestia in imitation of Han winking at Leia.
- In "The Last Roundup" Mayor Mare seems to be checking out Applejack during her speech, and later when the latter boards the train.
- Cherry Jubilee resembles an old western "madam" stereotype, and said of Applejack "I can always use a pony with quick hooves and a strong back". It doesn't help that there is a brothel in Nevada that was once named "Cherry Patch Ranch".
- The end of "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000" features two stallions standing close and drinking cider together, one of whom has a rainbow for a cutie mark.
- In "Hearts and Hooves Day", Twist gives her holiday card to a gray colt, and they hug. This visibly disappoints another filly (Tootsie Flute), who had been looking in their direction. Was that filly hoping to give her card to the colt, or to Twist? Meanwhile, yet another filly (Princess Erroria) gives her holiday card to Diamond Tiara, who seems surprised by this attention.
- In "Best Night Ever", Pinkie invades the personal space of a number of mares during her "Pony Pokey" song. The most infamous moment is probably the bit where she rubs her head on another mare's behind.
- In "Hearth's Warming Eve", Princess Platinum seems very close to her assistant/advisor Clover the Clever. Platinum yells out "Clover the Clever! I NEEEEEEEED you!" in Clover's introduction. Later, she tells Clover she doesn't mind it when Clover "stoops down" for her (yes, she's talking about crossing a stream, but hiding implications behind stuff like this is prime Radar material), before riding Clover across said stream while Clover is wearing a bridle. After the leaders thaw out, the Pegasi and Earth ponies share hugs and high-fives; Platinum and Clover, however, nuzzle. Since the ponies are also portraying the characters in a play, this could be considered another Rarity/Twilight moment. note
- In this clip of "Hurricane Fluttershy", two mares can be seen cuddling each other with big grins on their faces. A few seconds later Flitter and Cloudchaser give each other a pretty tender hug.
- Gilda has the same raspy voice and passion for athleticism that leads so many fans to think Rainbow is a Lesbian Jock, coupled with an extreme level of jealousy that quickly turns violent when Pinkie tries to get anywhere near Rainbow. She thinks a series of relatively harmless pranks are deliberate attempts by Pinkie to drive her away so she can keep Rainbow for herself, but when Rainbow reveals she was the one who set up the pranks Gilda is furious, and demands that Rainbow choose between them now. When Rainbow doesn't choose her Gilda is visibly hurt, and leaves immediately after tossing out a half-hearted insult.
- Increased in "It Ain't Easy Being Breezies," where Twilight shows that she can now change anyone's species. Rainbow's immediate reaction after the first demonstration is "I've always wanted to be a griffin."
- "The Lost Treasure of Griffinstone" ups the ante with Pinkie/Gilda shipping.
- Scootaloo has major Hero Worship towards Rainbow Dash, frequently to an obsessive level ("I'll do whatever you want!"), with "Sleepless in Ponyville" basically being "Scootaloo stresses out attempting to impress her crush." It's mostly justifiable by Scootaloo wanting Rainbow to be her big sister, but Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle don't display anywhere near the level of awe and admiration for their sisters that Scootaloo does for Rainbow.
- Since "The Mysterious Mare Do Well", she's literally fangirling over Rainbow Dash whenever she has a chance to be with her. When Dash was wavering a flag as a demonstration in "Flight to the Finish", Scootaloo watched with sparkles in her eyes. And once we see Scoots' house, guess which pony she has multiple posters of?
- "The Mysterious Mare-Do-Well" begins with a meeting of the Rainbow Dash Fan Club, with the first order of business being coming up with a word to properly describe Rainbow Dash's awesomeness ("awesome" just isn't good enough.) Naturally, Scoots is the leader of said fan club.
- In "Keep Calm and Flutter On" Celestia has so much faith in Fluttershy's abilities she's confident she'll be able to induce a Heel–Face Turn in the local Mad God. One part of the scene even looks very much like wedding vows if taken out of context.
- "Read It and Weep" opens with a mesmerized Rarity and Pinkie Pie swooning as they watch the "dazzling" Rainbow Dash work out. Twilight soon joins them.
- In "Daring Don't" Rainbow Dash openly proposes herself as a housewife to A.K. Yearling, the author of the Daring Do books she is a fan of. After she learns A.K. is Daring Do, she tags stalks along and violates her personal space quite often◊.
Twilight Sparkle: A.K. Yearling just might be my favorite author. I know everything about her. Where she grew up, where she studied literature, where she wrote the first Daring Do book...
Rainbow Dash: Where she lives?
Twilight Sparkle: Uh... no, though I could probably find out somehow. Why?
Rainbow Dash: Don't you get it? The new book is obviously delayed because she needs help dealing with whatever everyday nonsense is distracting her from spending her every living breathing second writing! So I– I mean, fans like me, can get to read the new book ASAP! Think about it! We could help her with her laundry, buy her groceries, cooking her meals, whatever! Now, who wouldn't appreciate that?
Twilight Sparkle: Hmm, I don't know... What she probably wants most of all is respect for her privacy.
Rainbow Dash: She can always just say no.
Twilight Sparkle: Mmh... I suppose you're right...
Rainbow Dash: Of course I am. So... how's about getting that address?
- This episode, the 69th in the series, centres around one of the Rings of Scorchero that Daring Do hid in a book at home. Daring Do and Rainbow Dash go looking for
athe ring, as it gets stolen. The former disguises herself and buys it back, but another foe catches her:Ahuizotl: The ring, Daring Do! Give it to me!
Daring Do: Now, Ahuizotl, you know I love you, but I can't give you the ring 'til I've properly proposed.
- Ahuizotl's gang take her and bind her in the fortress until the ponies find them and break up their ring-placing ceremony. Daring Do and Rainbow Dash are left at the altar with the
lastfirst ring in their hooves◊ which they fly off with◊. They smash the ring; Daring takes out a hoof but Rainbow hugs her; Daring hugs her back and nuzzles her◊.
- The writing of fourth season episodes was already completed by the end of the third season in 2013 February. In January, Rainbow's VA Ashleigh Ball released this instagram◊ of her and Brianna Armour tied at the wrists in wedding costumes, at a past Burning Man, likely in 2011. Could the episode be designed after them?
- In "Stranger Than Fan Fiction" Rainbow spreads her wing possessively over Daring Do after Quibble Pants realizes she was telling the truth about them knowing each other, much to Daring's irritation.
- This episode, the 69th in the series, centres around one of the Rings of Scorchero that Daring Do hid in a book at home. Daring Do and Rainbow Dash go looking for
- In "Twilight Time", when the crowd of fillies start snapping photos of the CMC with Twilight, Scootaloo starts posing, including pulling Sweetie Belle to her side like they're a celebrity couple.
- Apparently, Scootaloo watches Apple Bloom sleep, and thinks she does everything "with sass".
- Applejack protectively holding Fluttershy after Discord betrays their friendship and causes her to cry in "Twilight's Kingdom."
- In Equestria Girls a male athlete◊ character (named Curly Winds by fans) helps out a male techie◊ (named Wiz Kid also by fans), who is about to fall off a ladder◊ during the cleanup before the Fall Formal. The characters return in Rainbow Rocks, shown◊ together◊ whenever they appear throughout the film (including with their arms around each others shoulders◊ in the finale), and would continue to appear together over the course of the series. In short, their relationship is essentially the Spear Counterpart to Lyra and Bon Bon's relationship.
- And then there's this from a deleted version of "What More Is Out There". How they thought they were gonna get away with that is anyone's guess.
- In Equestria Girls, Twilight is the only one Celestia touches◊.
- At the start of the "Battle of the Bands" song from Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks, Adagio Dazzle walks past several students (both male and female) and, um... strokes them all in a rather sensual way. There's extra emphasis placed on her cupping Trixie's chin.
- During "Under Our Spell", Human!Luna can be seen in a blink and you'll miss it moment drawing a heart while looking at the Dazzlings... as a crusher would look upon a poster of their favorite celebrity.
- During "In Our Town", Starlight Glimmer strokes Twilight's face. The only reason that this isn't under Twilight is the fact that Starlight has No Sense of Personal Space and gets up in the face of one of her female followers while rearranging her mane.
- In "Castle Sweet Castle" Bulk Biceps and Spike, courtesy of the "extra strength, hot stone, deep tissue massage".
Bulk Biceps: YEAAAH!! Let's DO this, little dragon! *Uses a Pec Flex to pick Spike up*
- "Make New Friends but Keep Discord" has Fluttershy and Tree Hugger. Fluttershy uses her +1 ticket to the gala to invite a pony she hit it off with while on a trip to see the Breezies, giving it the distinct feeling of a date. It doesn't help that she's the only main cast member whose guest isn't a family member (AJ, Rarity, and Pinkie all bring their sisters, and RD brings Scootaloo, who's basically a sister to her anywaynote ). Throughout the episode, Discord acts like a jilted lover and gets pissed when he sees Fluttershy rest her hoof on Tree Hugger's shoulder. Not to mention that their hug after Discord lets Tree Hugger go doesn't really look platonic. The icing on the cake is the fact that there's a rather long-running inside joke in the fandom about how Fluttershy is secretly a tree, making Tree Hugger's name a Double Entendre.
- The first line of the final song, "Shine Like Rainbows" in Rainbow Rocks sounds incredibly shippy. It's not 100% clear whom Applejack is singing tonote , but it seriously sounds like the beginning of a declaration of love.
Applejack: Once upon a time,you came into my world and made the stars align...
- Vinyl Scratch and Octavia Melody is a very popular couple in the fandom, but the two had not even been in the same scene together for four straight seasons. That is until "Slice of Life", which revealed the two live in the same house. On top of that, the two get into a rather passionate rehearsal, sharing rather suggestive looks and smiles◊ and, at one point, Octavia's collar nearly comes off. It's almost borderline G-Rated Sex.
- "Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep" has a scene where Pinkie Pie uses her Offscreen Teleportation powers to get into Applejack's bed, then falls asleep next to her.
- In "Canterlot Boutique", Sassy Saddles actually calls Twilight Sparkle hot.
- In "Scare Master", Fluttershy blushes when Applejack compliments her voice.
- In "Brotherhooves Social", Big Macintosh Disguised in Drag, and it seems one of the middle-aged stallions had taken a liking to him. It may seem like he's attracted to the mare, but it's revealed that nopony at all was fooled by the disguise. Maybe he just liked Big Mac for Big Mac?
- When taken out of context, the conversation between Pinkie Pie and Mayor Mare in the hall of records in "The One Where Pinkie Pie Knows" comes off like Mayor Mare trying to come out to Pinkie Pie and see if she reciprocates her feelings.
- In "Scare Master" Fluttershy hangs drawings of Pony-fied versions of anime characters in her house. Front and center is Utena Tenjou from Revolutionary Girl Utena, a deeply homoerotic show with a passionate LGBT Fanbase.
- Almost the entirety of Mane Attraction for AJ and Rara. Particularly the flashback scene.
- The comics have Pinkie and Celestia's friends forever issue, where Celestia repeatedly gets really physical with Pinkie throughout. The most blatant is the 'intimate baking' scene, where their embrace while covered in cake mixture really doesn't look that platonic.
- In "Gift of the Maud Pie", there are stallions sitting in an intimate manner on the Manehattan train.
- Predictably, "The Times They Are A Changeling" managed to put in quite a bit of Ho Yay between Spike and Thorax (the new Token Heroic Changeling whom Spike becomes friends with). While it's more subtle than most of the examples on this list, there are still moments, especially during Spike's slow song about how he wants everyone to accept that a Changeling can be good—at one point, Spike gently touches Thorax's face and at another he catches a snowflake with a picture of Thorax on it.
- More fuel was added to the fire in "To Where and Back Again", when Thorax comments that he "hasn't been hungry for love ever since meeting Spike", never seems to clarify what he means by "love", specifically mentions Spike when talking about the friendships he's made and is primarily motivated to enter the Changeling kingdom despite his fear of the Queen for the sake of rescuing Spike, similar to how Discord is mostly motivated by wanting to save Fluttershy. After all the captives are freed, Thorax immediately goes to help Spike out of his cocoon.
- The whole first act of "Dungeons and Discord" goes to some lengths to keep the surprise that Spike and Big Macintosh are heavily into a Tabletop RPG. The result is several characters dropping oblique hints about how there's something those two get up to whenever the others are away, which they think is a big secret when actually the whole town knows, coming off very much like they're talking about a Transparent Closet.
- In "Buckball Season" Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy are discovered hiding in a train's baggage car, holding each other very tightly.
- Also in "Buckball Season", there's a pair of stallions watching the game who look and act suspiciously like male versions of Lyra and Bon Bon (see above).
- "Triple Threat" features a scene where Spike is desperately searching for the friendship problem he has to solve and at one point walks in on two stallions who appear to be on a dinner date.
- There's also plenty more with Spike and Thorax. Thorax is very interested in spending time with Spike over anyone else, and one scene where he does a Head Desk over being abandoned yet again looks very much like someone whose date just stood them up.
- In "School Daze Pt. 2", Starlight and Twilight touch horns to form a barrier spell. The last time we saw two horns touch to form a barrier, it was Shining Armor and Cadance, who were romantically involved.
- In "School Daze," new students Gallus and Sandbar share more than a few loving glances at each other, and seem to be the closest of the Young Six.
- In "The Break Up Breakdown" a mail mix-up leads Sweetie Belle to spend the day thinking she has a secret admirer, with the CMC teaming up to find him. After finding out the truth, she says that she's realized she has two "very special someponies" in the two of them.
Outside show media
- The Theme Tune Extended (included as a sing-along on the DVD The Friendship Express) has such wonderful character puns, sung from Twilight's perspective, such as "Once smitten, twice Fluttershy", "You are the Applejack of my eye", "A heart that shines so beautiful, a Rarity to come by", and perhaps best of all, "As easy as Pinkie Pie."note
- In Adventures in Ponyville, when the player's (female) pony talks to any of the Mane Six, they'll sometimes say "Pony up!" to her. Unlike everything else they say to her, the speech balloon used for "Pony up!" is lined with a couple of hearts, making it seem like the Mane Six are casually flirting with the player's pony.
- In the standalone version of Rainbow Dash's game from Adventures in Ponyville, when the player's (female) pony helps her (also female) friend up, hearts appear over said friend. (The hearts are most likely just a replacement for Adventures in Ponyville's Friendship Sparkles, but nothing in the game actually indicates this.)
- The top-right panel of the third page of the extremely Off-Model Sparkle World story Rain, Rain Go Away!
- The German magazine comic Der Stern der Winterträume, Scanlated as The Star of Winterdreams, ends with the Mane Six sleeping together by the fireplace. Rainbow Dash is on her side, turned towards Applejack.
- Box-art◊ for some of the toys includes Rainbow Dash looking at Pinkie Pie while their faces are framed together in a heart symbol.
- The Crystal Empire toyline has a set with Pinkie and Fluttershy sharing a tub.
- In the ◊, DJ Pon-3/Vinyl Scratch is a bit too close to Octavia. It even looks like she's kissing her nape!
- WeLoveFine released some Valentine's Day (or should we say Hearts & Hooves Day?) themed t-shirts, and two of them include Rainbow Dash apparently getting a valentine from Pinkie or Derpy. Clearly, the official shirt for Pinkie/Dash shippers everywhere. Meghan McCarthy even bought the shirt, and wore it around at Los Pegasus.
- There is a placemat(?) featuring Pinkie and Twilight looking at each other inside a heart shape with many smaller hearts around them.
- For World Pride Day, Ashleigh Ball posted some Appledash fanart that she had signed personally.
- One comment joked that Ball, who voices both characters, was shipping herself with herself.
- This toy from Hasbro has the ability to create characters from the show and then mix and match them. They use some of the fandom's Portmanteau Couple Names to describe the examples, including Appledash and Flutterpie.
- At the 2015 San Diego Comic Con panel, the actors and creators asked what their favourite fan ships were. Most of them claimed not to have any, but Ashleigh Ball claimed to really like Appledash.
- Using "Are You Pondering What I'm Pondering?" (a meme from another show packed with as much Ho Yay as the Holmes/Watson example above) with Pinkie Pie is, unsurprisingly, a popular trend in fan art and fan comics. 75% of the time, Twilight is the one cast in Brain's role.
- In the Ponyville Mysteries book "Riddle of the Rusty Horseshoe", it's revealed that Scootaloo's aunts look after her when her parents aren't around. Aunt Holiday and Aunt Lofty are heavily implied to be a lesbian couple, with Holiday giving Lofty an affectionate kiss on the forehead and calling her "dear".