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Turns out, Discord also had a group of psychos for hire on stand-by called the League of Auxiliary Minions. However, we never see them outside of a flashback, since by present they've died from asphyxiation due to Discord forgetting to pump air into their room. Though then the flashback reveals that Angry Pie killed them for trying to rape one of her adopted foals. It's implied by Shining Armor's dreams that they were created by Discord from Dark World!Makarov.
Race Against the Clock: A large portion of Shining Armor 17 deals with trying to stop Makarov before he regains his full strength after Shining Armor weakened him and restarts his endgame.
Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: How Shining Armor describes himself and the other founding members of Cadence's branch of the Royal Guard, as they were all gathered from separate parts of the preexisting Guard. The group call sign is made Misfit because of this.
The Anti-Hooviet Rebels he meets also qualify. Of the main ones, there's two Roes (the Noble Class), a Moose, and a Musk Deer. Shining even points out how odd it is to see them together.
Raise Him Right This Time: Upon being defeated, Chrysalis dies, but the good part of her, which she's long since buried, survives (possibly due to her being a Concept) and is recreated as a baby zebra alicorn, giving her a second chance at life, adopted by Shining and Cadence.
Read the Fine Print: Subverted in probably the funniest way possible. Luna made it extremely clear in the the contract what happens if you join her side of the army:
Luna: And every pony that swears themselves to my half of the army KNOWS the conditions for joining. You infuse your troops with a micro-fraction of your essence, I infuse mine the same way. It's written in BIG BOLD LETTERS in 40 size font across two pages with before and after pictures that they'll turn black, become nocturnal, grow dislike to sunlight and exchange feather wings for batwings when they become Night Troopers.
Real Life Writes the Plot: "A Day at the Circus" was inspired by and based on a circus Godzillawolf himself had attended a few days prior.
Really 700 Years Old: The Dark World Mane Six are over a thousand years old due to being made immortal by Discord with the Elements Of Chaos. Derpy is also this, as Discord's spell on her made her immortal and when her Element of Loyalty awakened, it stabilized her in her age before she was cursed (she was cycling through ages from a filly to an old mare as she circled the castle), though she may no longer be immortal, it's not exactly clear. Dinky also counts, as when the curse on her was broken, she's the same age she was one thousand years ago. Only now, her personality seems to have grown while her body didn't.
Patch and Brightglow were at least several hundred years old when they died, their lives extended by the Rainbow Fragments. While they did age, they didn't age as much as they should have, and thus still looked much younger than they really were.
Celestia and Luna's physical forms are both at least three to four thousand years old (as is Discord's). However, being Alicorns, their true age before being born in the mortal world is far greater, with Celestia able to remember the Big Bang with some degree of clarity.
Professor Kabuto is actually at least over a century old, but artificially extended his life span. He did the same with his fellow Masters and Hercules on order from Queen Cocoon, but how old they are isn't explained, just that Hercules is the closest.
The Alicorn Elders both qualify, as they genuinely love their children and are even willing to accept Celestia back after she defied her family and ended up unleashing the Windigos on the world. The Father of All Alicorns has also shown he has no qualms answering questions posed to him by mortals when he talks with them and gladly answers them logically without resorting to In Mysterious Ways. It's also stated he's all merciful and considers no one unforgivable.
Havoc, one of the Elders and the father of the Draconequi, also qualifies. Unlike his wife (who's response to almost any perceived slight is to erase the 'offender' from existence), he's actually willing to put up with being spoken back too and actually genuinely cares about his children (according to Word of God, he's never forgiven Entropy for erasing their son from existence). While his punishments to them are rather extreme, they're perfectly normal by Draconequi standards, and its stated by Word of God that, as the Personification of Pony Hell, its his job to punish sinners, even his own children. He's also willing to hear Dark World!Fluttershy out when she beseeches him to spare Dark World!Fluttercruel further harm and let her take her daughter to be reconditioned properly, even relenting without any fuss when she proves her point logically.
And then Luna to both of them (after Fluttershy has been purified), proceeding to point out exactly how they fucked up what could have been good in very specific detail. To give an idea of how severely she chews them out, it was considered fitting punishment for what they did.
Rota Fortuna delivers a crushing one to Nightmare Eclipse as the latter is being defeated, pointing out how all she's done is contradict what she said she was going to do and become She Who Fights Monsters.
Shining Armor's Arc has a few big ones, including that the arc takes place in San Dimas Time in relation to the rest of the series because Shining is Trapped in the Past catching up to the present.
The biggest of the entire series may be that Dark World is a Stealth Prequel to the rest of the series. At the end of it, Amicitia (Alicorn Twilight) sacrifices herself to create Shining Armor and the Interviewer's (who are revealed to be named Half-Light Dawn, Half-Light Noon, and Half-Light Dusk respectively), Shining acting as the nail to create the main timeline.
Redundant Rescue: Deconstructed. Dark World!Spike chooses to help Rarity against Fluttercruel...but Rarity had already killed Fluttercruel. Spike going to rescue her left Twilight, who really needed his help, to lose her Element to Angry Pie and nearly die.
Reincarnation: Its revealed that several ponies are actually reincarnations of G3 ponies, in some cases more than one due to spirits fusing together. Twilight Sparkle was G1 Twilight and Minty, Rainbow is G3 Rainbow Dash and Firefly, and, obviously, Rarity is one of her G3 self. Spike may be his G3 self's reincarnation, but its revealed they share a common ancestor in G1 Spike. Double Subverted with Pinkie Pie, as she's literally the G3 Pinkie, but also the reincarnation of G1 Surprise and has a some of G3 Rarity in her. Its implied this isn't limited to them as well, and that some of them may have other ponies composing them. Though this is an interesting example as the G3 ponies were erased from time and thus technically don't have a first incarnation at all as far as history is concerned.
In-Universe, Zecora believes in this. Luna points out in narration that that type of reincarnation doesn't exist (her brother is the Grim Reaper so she'd known) but doesn't tell her because Her Father honestly doesn't care about whether He'd believed in or not, just they're a good pony. It turns out Zecora is the reincarnation of Kimono, who was once Ms. Hackney, the discover of which she takes in stride.
Retgone: Happens to several G3 ponies in the veryLoose Canon when a Cosmic Retcon is the only way to save the universe from entrophy. However, it's hinted by an alicorn (and the G1 Firefly's spirit merging with the G3 Rainbow Dash to form the G4 version of Rainbow Dash) that the ponies aren't entirely erased and a part of them will live on in the G4 timeline.
Also an ability that the Blank Wolf has. It literally exists to find anomalies in the timeline and erase their very existence. It intends to give this treatment to Shining Armor. We later learn that the only way Shining Armor will be able to truly defeat Makarov is by getting the wolf to catch Makarov's scent instead.
The author constantly reworks scenes in the archives to keep the series compatible with the show's canon, so some details here and there will change, trickling down through the rest of the stories. Though there have been very few that drastically change the story, normally they're simply small things or new scenes that don't change the overall plot. One noteable Retcon, however, is that Diamond Tiara has not released Discord as of "Luna's Nightmare." This was because the author wasn't happy with how it came out and how much it restricted things.
This is actually given an In-Universe justification in "AJ's Dream". The Pony POV universe is connected to the "heart world", any even that happen there branch out to the worlds connected to it. The plot of the sidestory revolved around preparing for the event the changes are too severe and the link is broken.
Rewriting Reality: General-Admiral Makarov did this so that the Hooviet Empire never collapsed. While writing isn't the method, there's multiple references to it being this trope, as he's literally rewriting the story and taking over. His changes are erased when he's defeated, however.
This turns out to be Discord, Nightmare Diamond, and Umbra Breeze's grand plan during the finale arc: using the Foal Free Press as the medium (the Crusaders creepily seem to read the articles as the alterations come into being) to twist reality into a grim dark hell hole. It's implied to go far deeper than Discord's normal reality warping, to the point the Elders seem to have descended to try and help the Crusaders stop it. This statement from the Author's Notes also invokes this trope.
Discord: I've waited far too long for this moment. DO IT my baby girl!
?????: As you wish father. The world will never remember this day. Because it'll be what has always been.
Whenever a pony, for whatever reason, throws up or feels like they will, they tend to question how it's physically possible for a pony to do that in the first place, since real horses aren't capable of it.
Celestia recounting a Noodle Incident from her reign, such as two different assassins actually knocking on her bedroom door before trying to kill her.
During the "Cruel's Best Pet" side story, Fluttercruel's strange recurring fascination with Honey Badgers.
Twilight giving a lecture and having a soapbox manifest underneath her. Though once it happened with Dark World!Rainbow Dash of all ponies, at which point Twilight promptly apologizes and admits having no idea why it keeps happening. This includes her evil potential future self Nightmare Paradox.
Shining Armor: Does this happen to mom too? I'll just move this thing out of the way...
Shining Armor's arc has developed one of Pinkie cameoing every time there's a party.
Sailor Earth: Subverted for the most part in, while Trixie and Fluttercruel are bearers, they each share an existing Element with somepony else, the one time a new Element of Harmony was introduced, there is and never will be a Bearer because Discord destroyed the Element of Trust. There's also the Elements of Chaos, but the only wielders of them are the existing mane cast in Dark World, though other characters do get them in Dark World Drabbles as Legacy Characters.
San Dimas Time: Revealed to be the case with the Shining Armor Arc and the main story. According to the Interviewers, the same thing that makes him Immune to Fate means he's essentially in the past trying to catch up to the present instead of the present trying to get to the future. Played for Drama because it means Makarov can actually win because its taking place in Shining's present and it's also why the Wolf is after him.
Satanic Archetype: There are two beings who share this role. One is Discord's father, Havoc, the Anthropomorphic Personification of Mass Hysteria and one of the four Elders (the Top Gods). He's the Dimension Lord of Pony Hell, where the condemned are doomed to pull his chariot across an endless desert for all eternity.The other is Morning Star, a Fallen Alicorn who was originally supposed to be the Concept of Perfection and Beauty, but, like Old Scratch, became the embodiment of Evil and Temptation when he attempted to overthrow the Elders, seeing himself more perfect than they are. He was sealed away, but later released by Havoc to fight on his side of a war, and served as Discord'sEvil Mentor. What became of him after that is presently unknown (though Word of God is that he was either killed during the war or imprisoned in Hell under Havoc's watch as part of the peace treaty between the Alicorns and Draconequi).
Saying Too Much: Diamond Tiara inadvertently tells Fancy Pants more and more about her background and motivations, requiring Discord to induce a temporary seizure to save the conspiracy.
Scary Impractical Armor: Makarov wears this for pretty much no good reason in Chapter 17. Arguably, even the armor-plating on his Airship and Helicopter should qualify as this too, except his reality-warping powers compensate for it.
Screaming Birth: Entropy is the antithesis of creation and existing, so naturally giving birth to Her and Havoc's children, the Draconequi. The one time we see has Her writhing in pain sends shockwaves throughout the universe and She erases Havoc from existence the moment it's done (He wills Himself back into it moments later). How He manages to convince Her to have kids period is presently unknown.
Fauna Luster, being Entropy's antithesis and Life Incarnate, Inverts this; giving birth is pleasurable to Her.
Bright Eyes' first memory she recovers is her daughter's birth. It involved a lot of screaming and cuss words.
The Fallen AlicornMorning Star was imprisoned for trying to overthrow the Elders and conquer the universe. He was released again during the Alicorn/Draconequi War, but ultimately sealed away in Hell afterwards as part of the treaty.
Grogar, who escapes from his prison once every 500 years and has to either be stopped from emerging or seal him away again. Discord is ticked because Grogar doesn't seem to care about being imprisoned.
The Shadow of Chernobull, an entity imprisoned in Pandora's Box which the Hooviets accidentally released and it becomes General-Admiral Makarov.
Tartarus exists in this universe as well. Its chief inmates are a group of extradimensional invaders who sought to turn the Pony Verse into a hellhole so horrific that even Entropy opposed them. They were defeated and imprisoned by Rota Fortuna, Princeps, Imperatrix, and Justitia and attempted to trick Clover into releasing them. Thankfully they were stopped.
One escaped in modern day, but it'd weakened during it's imprisonment, allowing Celestia, Luna, and the Royal Guard to destroy it. The fact the Alicorns didn't just destroy them originally is explained; they didn't know how, but discovered a method since then to destroy them, which is used to kill that one.
As in the main canon, King Sombra was imprisoned in the northern ice by Celestia and Luna, but due to the POV Series currently being only in season two, he has yet to escape.
Lilith the Witch Queen and First Witch was sealed in a stone coffin until her descendants set her loose in a last ditch effort to destroy the Paradise Ponies. It's also revealed the Alicorn Amulet is an Artifact of Doom because Magic Star used it as a can for most of Lilith's evil magic (which she was made of) so she could be defeated by the Rainbow of Light.
The Dazzlings/Sirens were frozen by the Windigos and their own power feeding their prison kept them sealed for thousands of years. They avoided an And I Must Scream fate dude to being able to communicate with one another and observe the outside world. Unfortunately, they were also capable of feeding while in this prison, allowing them to feed off Discord's reign and the three tribes era. They eventually break loose by using their music to lure an archaeologist into breaking their icy prison. The Princesses try to seal them away with the Elements, but what seems to be a combination of their artificial Elements of Chaos, the sheer amount of negativity they'd absorbed, and the blessing of Morning Star, the Dazzlings escape moments later, necessitating the plan of banishing them to another world.
Sequel Series: Reharmonized Ponies to Discorded Ponies and Dark World as a direct sequel series to Discorded Ponies.
Season Finale: While they felt like it originally due to how they were set up, the Fimfiction upload divides the series into multiple seasons, confirming them to be this, but it's not been finished uploading.
Discorded: Epilogue (Six Minions as the Audio Adaptation called it)
Season 1: Second Family
Season 2: Pearl Necklace Part 5
Season 3: Replacement Screws
Season 4: Origins Part 6
Season 5: Mind Games Part 8
Season 6 (Shining Armor Arc): Back Page
Season 7: Love Is In Bloom
Dark World also ended up divided into its own seasons.
Season 1: Duel of Tears
Season 2: The Real Hoof Blues Part 2.
Season 3: Crushed Pearl Necklace
Season 4: That Which Pierces All.
Season 5: The Connection
7 Dreams/Nightmares Gaiden: Clover.
Secret Identity: There is more to the unnamed Interviewer than meets the eye.
Or as it turns out, interviewers.
Secret Test of Character: Rainbow Dash pulls one on Fluttercruel during her Cute-Ceanera, thus establishing Fluttercruel as a unique and trustworthy individual to the rest of the group.
Self-Deprecation: Celestia sells unflattering, made up stories of herself to the tabloids under an assumed name. Among other reasons, it's to give herself an excuse to give some of the noble's powers to common ponies (she wanted to do that anyway), to improve Luna's image, and since they're going to paint her a tyrant anyway, she might as well have some fun.
While it is All Just a Dream, Luna makes sure the Bad Future she witnessed in her second sidestory doesn't come to pass by changing her actions and realizing the error of her ways.
Twilight Tragedy does this in the Recursive Fanfiction ending to Epilogue, Fading Futures. She sends her past self telepathic messages to guide her through the point when the future Twilight failed, allowing her to manage to lead the Elements of Harmony to defeat Discord and save the world.
This is the goal of the Rebels and Shining Armor in the Shining Armor Arc. General-Admiral Makarov/The Shadow of Chernobull's influence resulted in the Hooviet Empire not collapsing when it should have around 20 years ago, allowing them to perform even more atrocities and maintain an iron hoof over the Deer lands. Shining Armor and company's plan is to feed Makarov to the Wolf, erasing him from history and returning the timeline to it's proper state.
For the record, the North is actually in the south but says it's in the north. The South is in the north and says it's south. The North thinks the South is claiming to be in the north and the South thinks the north is claiming to be in south. Everybody got that?
Shadow Dictator: Father Deer, the mysterious leader of the Hooviet Empire. However, it seems that General Admiral Makarov is the true leader and his superiors only assume they're in control.
Shapeshifter Default Form: Loneliness prefers to stay in the form of Trixie's mother, Morgan. Rather this or any form she assumes is her true form or if she even has one is never revealed.
Reznov's story of Makarov suggests 'Makarov' is simply this for something called the Shadow of Chernobull that a Hooviet experiment accidentally released from Pandora's Box (the Draconequus, not the myth) who took on the role of the Super Soldier the Hooviets had tried to create.
Sharing a Body: Discord's Mind Rape of Fluttershy resulted in her "Discorded self" ending up as a seperate being in the same body. After beating Fluttercruel in her normal Badass Pacifist style, Fluttershy realizes Fluttercruel isn't evil, just was "raised" wrong by Discord and allows her to share her body while trying to reform her. Now the two pretty much share control and work together at times. So far it's worked out quite well. Even when Fluttercruel takes over, Fluttershy is still there, they just kind of switched places.
After the Princess Gaia incident, Princess Celestia gives them a gift; enabling Fluttershy's body to transform into Fluttercruel's (who differs by darker fur and a different Cutie Mark) when she's in control. They still share the same body, however.
Sheep in Wolf's Clothing: Moon Dancer does this during the Wedding, due the Changelings believing that she's still Chrysalis' brainwashed slave.
Misfit Actual as a whole does this to a degree, due to the Changelings believing the Guard has been expelled from Canterlot and thus assuming any 'guard' left is one of theirs (Shining's shield skipped over Misfit for as of yet unknown reasons). Running Gag and Thunderchild in particular do this, as Gag was able to use his special talent to copy the Changeling's language and Thunderchild took the indentity of the Changeling leading the hit squad sent to take him out.
One upped by Dr. Hoof Wave, deducing Discord's entire family history just by observing a couple choice actions.
Bright Eyes is pretty good at this. It's also how she deduces Lancer is her husband after losing her memory.
Bright Eyes: You've been concerned and protective of me from the start. I felt hurt when you were hurt and I know we're not identical twins. That means you were either my husband, a friend, or my brother. Sweetheart didn't find us being together strange at all. So that rules out stranger. You've been struggling with being close to me but not being too close. So that rules out family. You weren't possessive of me, so that rules out stalker. You might have just been a friend who was pinning for me and my husband died in whatever disaster happened. But you weren't acting ashamed or hesitant like this was your big chance. And I feel safe around you, the first thing I called you was 'White Knight', which means I felt safe around you before and I remember your voice calling to me. So you must have had some great meaning for me. Oh and our wedding rings are identical.
Shipper on Deck: Princess Cadence's hoofmaidens shipped her and Shining Armor before they even dated.
They also ship Garnet and Running Gag. Both ships are handled with the subtleness of a steamroller driving through a nitroglycerin plant.
Shock and Awe: Trixie's partial to using lightning magic when it comes to fighting, either by summoning a minture storm cloud or simply electrifying her horn.
Shown Their Work: The series as a whole has a massive amount of research done for it. The main fic shows a large amount of attention to detail to all four Gens of My Little Pony, including several more obscure sources outside the TV Series such as the "Ember's Dream" cassette that was only available by mail ordering the G1 toy. The Shining Armor Arc shows a massive amount of research into real world military terminology, technology, and the real world counterparts to the locations visited.
Twilight does this to Loneliness on multiple occasions throughout the final battle with her. Finally, Trixie finally manages one when she defies Loneliness in the end before grabbing her Element Of Harmony and destroying her.
Fluttercruel to Princess Luna, when Luna brings up the possibility that they really can't know who the "original" and who the "copy" is. Cruel' replies by saying that they're both real and it doesn't matter whose the "original". Luna is impressed by this.
Sweetie Belle gets one on Silver Spoon's mother in "Butterflies" — when she says the CMC don't deserve to be Silver Spoon's friends, she points out how well connected they are through their sisters (and Rainbow Dash in Scootaloo's case), and is completely polite while doing so.
Later on in Dark World, Rarity has one against Fluttercruel after the latter tries to pull a Not So Different on her when she declares she's going to kill Fluttercruel for torturing Fluttershy's mind for centuries until Cadence's spirit saved her.
She gives Fluttercruel another one when they each summon small armies to aid them. Fluttercruel uses disposable Mooks. Rarity asks for help from the souls of Fluttercruel's victims and gives them stone bodies to use, and points out how they're different.
Twilight gives several to the Nameless Passenger when the Passenger tells her to kill a sea pony trying to take Celestia and Luna's feathers. The Sea Ponies, for reference, are basically completely innocent creatures who have no idea Discord and the Chaos Six were the bad guys.
Twilight: From what Applejack told me about her redemption, Applebloom's ghost took a feather already on orders from their Father, so it must be safe. And I'm not a murderer. That's why.
Twilight and company get quite a few against the Nameless Passenger after she reveals herself as Twilight potential future selfNightmare Eclipse/Paradox as she tries to convince Twilight to become her, shooting down all her arguments.
Spike delivered what this Troper thinks is the most awesome Shut Up, Hannibal, when he refused to restrain Twilight for her.
Nightmare Eclipse: YOU'RE THE ONE WHOSE LOST HER MIND Twilight! Everything in this world is nothing but shadows of a lie of a fantasy. You're not being rational! Spike! Restrain her!
Nightmare Eclipse: Spike, I'm warning you!
Spike: I'll have you know I am NOT a robot, or a distortion, or any of those other things. And I need to be loyal to the real Twilight.
It should be noted out of all the Shut Up, Hannibal! speeches Paradox got that chapter, this is the only one she has no Shut Up, Kirk! for because it just pisses her off that much.
Bright Eyes gets one against Cruel Eyes/D___t's Shadow of Existence, using her love of Lancer to help her beat hisBreaking Lecture.
Bright Eyes: "...We can't be certain...if what we think of ourselves is true, and we can be certain what others think of us is true. The heart is always subjective. All we have left in the end is who we chose to trust. I'd trust Lancer with my life, I trusted him with my heart a long time ago!"
She gets another one shortly there after when he's giving his Final Speech and Dying Curse.
Cruel Eyes: This is not over, I swear to you, I shall stalk your soul and its iterations across creation, and when your heart cries out in deepest despair, I will be there to devour you, we will meet-!
Bright Eyes: (impales him through the heart) Sorry, but that's not happening. (bisects his head with enough force to drive her sword into his chest, destroying him completely) Ever.
In Shining Armor 18, Minuette gets one against the Master when he tries to tempt her into opening her fob watch and becoming him again. After she resists his attempts, he snaps and yells that she has no choice because she is him. Her reply?
In "Character Rerailment", Silver gets a few against her now Nightmarified friend Diamond Tiara while she's trying to convince her she only exists to be her bully toady and is worthless otherwise.
Diamond Tiara: What have you ever done, Silver on your own? Who has ever liked you when you weren't of any use to them at all? Who would miss you if you died? I know I wouldn't. Your parents? They'd just have another foal to replace you. Fillies like you are a dime a dozen. You're a worthless, pointless, little waste of space."
Silver Spoon: ...I...I'm not worthless…I'm not worthless! The Crusaders took me in! They didn't need to! I wasn't of use to them at all back then! I was their BULLY! That was the only Silver Spoon they'd ever known! And they STILL helped me...they still SAVED me...My Cutie Mark...I don't know what it means, but it's not 'being born with a silver spoon in my mouth' or being a minion...the heart in the handle is more important. Just because I don't remember the charity doesn't mean it didn't matter to me!
Shut Up, Kirk!: Fluttercruel tries this to Rarity's Shut Up, Hannibal!, but whether or not sure actually succeeds or is trying to cover for how they effect her is not clear.
Nightmare Paradox is more successful for ignoring the heroes' Shut Up Hannibals against her, pretty much just treating them as ramblings of her 'immature' past self and her 'imaginary' friends. However, some of their arguments do get under her skin (due to pressing her Berserk Buttons, but they don't convince her of anything.
And when Spike gave her a Shut Up, Hannibal!, it was the only case where she was not able to counter with one of these, because it pissed her off that much.
Sibling Yin-Yang: Discord and his sister Strife. Were Discord is all about fun and games and ignores his duty as a Concept, Strife is very no-nonsense and, while a Blood Knight, is far more serious than he is.
Pinkie and both her sisters have this, considering one is Octavia and the other is Photo Finish.
Simultaneous Arcs: The Shining Armor Arc happens concurrent to the mane casts adventures, starting at the Nightmare Moon incident and continuing. Eventually revealed to have constantly been this way, as Shining was Trapped in the Past and running on San Dimas Time, meaning while the main Reharmonized Ponies series was happening, his story was happening.
During the Wedding, Misfit Actual's storyline happens simultaneously with the mane cast's, with their fight with Digger Wasp happening at the same time the mane six are moving in to save Twilight and Spike.
Fluttercruel is an interesting case. She joins and is big help most of the time, until her Nice Job Breaking It, Hero moment, but Fluttershy is the only member of the mane cast who even knows she exists until she reveals herself during the Final Battle with Nightmare Whisper. She also gets her own Element Of Kindness, making her fit this role even more than before.
Trixie after her Heel-Face Turnis revealed to be another Element Of Magic like Twilight. The next chapter she's introduced to the rest of the mane cast and officially joins them. She really proves her worth in "Links" by being one of the only ones able to break free of Princess Gaia's spell on her own and then using the memory spell to help free the others.
Silver Spoon becomes the Fourth Ranger for the Cutie Mark Crusaders.
The Smart Guy: Gummy is apparently trying to mentally calculate the vector of the time-space convergence.
So What Do We Do Now?: The CMC are in this position after Chrysalis' defeat. After the big adventure is over and two of them earned their Cutie Marks...they go right back to school. Of course that doesn't last long...
Split Personality Merge: Angry Pie tries to force this by eating the other parts of Pinkie Pie's personality. Except it's implied that this wasn't really a merge at all, more like a destruction of all the other parts, strengthening Angry Pie in the process. Pinkie Pie finally does it the proper way and merges all her personality bits back together. The result has the same personality as before, but is able to think a lot more clearly and be much more profound... While still almost completely in character.
This happens again when Fluttershy merges with Flutterage.
"The Alicorn and the Steed" has Fluttercruel succeeding... Kind of. It's more like she and Fluttershy switched places than her outright taking over. Why did she? She just wanted a hamburger. Yeah, needless to say, this is a far more benign version than most. Subverted in that cows are intelligent creatures in Equestria.
Spotlight-Stealing Squad: A minor and unusual example: Shining Armor's sudden obsession with Oubliettes and Ogres, when he never mentioned the game before, and hasn't mentioned much of his previous hobbies and interests since. This extends to his O&O group being referred to when discussing past events far more often than, say, hoofball or reading: Both of which would logically have significant places in SA's heart as well thanks to his other friends and relatives.
Squee: Predictably, Rainbow reacts this way to Spitfire knocking on her door.
Stable Time Loop: When Twilight/Amicitia ascends, Cadence warns her that her greatest enemy awaits at the dawn of time. So she goes back then, where Mortis warns her that they're destined to one day fight each other as well, before helping her evade a sneak attack from a young Cadence, who's convinced that magic is inherently evil and wants to kill Amicitia to prevent its existence. After Amicitia barely defeats her, she then hops back in time a bit and tells Mortis to warn her, before going on to traverse her own timeline to be the Benevolent Interloper and shield her mortal self from Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox's influence. And then she makes sure Razzaroo's Apocalyptic Log survives G3's Cosmic Retcon and sends it to the spirit world, where Razzaroo would then use it to nearly become The Magician Alicorn and challenge Dark World Twilight for the spot in the first place. Notably, Mortis at one point warns her not to do this too much, as it becomes complicated.
Staring Down Cthulhu: Fluttercruel manages to make Nightmare Whisper backdown with her version of the Stare. More impressive is Nightmare Whisper, AKA Fluttershy, is normally the one to do this and was using the Stare herself at the time!
Dark World!Fluttershy faces down all of Discord's siblings and Havoc in order to take Fluttercruel's spirit from them. Havoc's impressed enough to let her.
The Starscream: The Valeyard to Dark World Discord — he sees Discord as a tool, who one day he intends to steal power from in order to take over the universe.
Start of Darkness: The entire Origins arc is one for Discord. And for bonus points, his last act before being turned to stone is to plant the seeds of Luna's own SOD.
Mind Games is one for Diamond Tiara.
"A Fading Future" details that of Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox.
We get to see Dark World!Nightmare Mirror's SOD as well; she became a Nightmare when the Valeyard broke Apple Pie with a nudge from Nightmare Eclipse.
The Dazzlings' was the G2 Apocalypse, which killed two of their band-mates and sisters (Tempo Wave and Oratorio Waltz) and mutated them into monstrous forms. Going from beloved rock stars to ostracized outcasts (for both their new forms and their support of the Wish Spell), they discovered they now had a Horror Hunger for The Power of Hate, but managed to live with the other Rockin' Beats for some time...until a lynch mob came. While being brutalized by the mob, the trio were pushed over the edge and Adagio discovered theirMagic Music, which they used to brainwash their attackers and ultimately to become despots out of a desire to get the adoration and fame they once had back.
In We're All Still Here we see this for Nightmare Manacle. She wanted to save 'her' Twilight from Nightmare Eclipse at the price of eternal servitude. It didn't work.
Stating the Simple Solution: Before the group go off to find out what's happening with Princess Gaia, Trixie wisely suggests they go get the Elements of Harmony so they can actually do something about it. Unfortunately, Fluttershy is missing (and actually Princess Gaia/Nightmare Whisper) so they can't actually do it.
Stealth Sequel: Dark World is revealed to be a Stealth Prequel to the main story, ending with Amicitia sacrificing herself to create Shining Armor, the Interviewers, and through them the main timeline.
Stepford Smiler: Pretty much every character becomes a Type A in Reharmonized, with Pinkie being even more pronounced (her normal tendancies become outright manic, to the point of not sleeping for about a week to throw parties). They get better.
It gets played with a couple of chapters later — first, Rarity suggests not storming the castle and waiting for Discord to get bored holed up inside and attack when he comes outside (thus avoiding all his death traps), but Twilight points out that Discord can teleport all over the world, thus meaning they might never catch him. Later, when they actually reach the castle, Twilight decides to just blast the whole castle with the Elements of Harmony and hope that will deal with Discord and the others, thus saving them from having to actually risk the dangers of the castle. However, the castle comes to life and runs away to avoid being hit. Applejack manages to talk it into neutrality by promising not to blast it, which means they have to go inside if they want to fight Discord.
The climax of the Shining Armor Arc has Shining leading allied forces in doing this with several Hooviet strongholds.
Similarly, the climax of the Wedding Arc has the Mane Six leading their allies against Canterlot castle, where Chrysalis and her remaining forces have barricaded themselves.
Story Arc: Not only does each of the mane six and Trixie, after her Heel-Face Turn have their own plot, there's also (thus far) three specific story arcs, each with their own Big Bad. The Loneliness Arc, followed by the Princess Gaia (or Penultimate) Arc, and finally the Discord Arc. Discord's arc started early in Rarity's interaction with Diamond Tiara and the conclusion has yet to be seen.
There's also the Dark World Arc, which is technically the Grand Finale of the Discorded Series, as it continues Epilogue, and has been built up over the entire series through Applejack's Vision Quests. Though this Arc turned out to be so long it was finally declared a separate SERIES altogether (though it's still listed as a season on FIMfiction to avoid confusion) with its own set of story arcs, namely the Redemption of the Elements Arc (to Duel of Tears), the Storming the Castle Arc (to the redemption of Pinkie Pie), the Off The Rails Arc, the End of Days Arc, and the Alicorn Ascension Arc.
Stranger in a Familiar Land: Shining Armor, Cadence, and Minuette end up as this after Makarov meets his demise and is erased from existence. Due to all three having a Ripple-Effect-Proof Memory (Shining likely due to being Immune to Fate, Cadence due to being an Alicorn, and Minuette due to being a Time Lord), they awaken in the corrected timeline and need to adjust to a world were the Hooviet Empire imploded on schedule. Downplayed due to them having a new set of memories of the corrected line, but they still have to get used to the former Hooviets now being allies, new technologies, certain wars and conflicts having never happened, and Shining and Twilight'smother's book now having sequels due to being a hit in Roedina.
Stylistic Suck: 'Happy Cake Adventure' a story told by Pinkie Pie to try and get out of telling about the G3 apocalypse.
The song sung by Minuette and Twinkle Shine in Part 3 of Shining Armor's arc (which we only see part of) was made to emulate the songs in old, cheesy romance movies according to Word of God.
Luna's Nightmare Moon persona is mentioned and she nearly turns back into her. Rainbow Dash comes close to having the same happen to her, but is talked down. Unfortunately, no one is there to talk Fluttershy down (except Fluttercruel, but she's sinking into darkness herself at the time) and she transforms into the second Big Bad, Princess Gaia/Nightmare Whisper. Then on top of that, she used her new found power as a Nightmare to break the seal on the Elder Horn and use it's power as well.
Turns out that all the mane cast and Celestia can turn into Nightmares if they're consumed by one part of themselves. In Luna's case, it was the night she controlled and in the case of Fluttershy, it was her Kindness. We see other alternate realities were Rainbow Dash went Nightmare, turning into Nightmare Manacle (who chained ponies together to force them to be loyal to one another), and where Pinkie Pie did, becoming Nightmare Granfalloon (an insane Monster Clown Alicorn that pulled Ponyville into a Circus of Fear). Another reality seems to be a universe where Rarity was the one who went Nightmare, but we don't see anything about her. The "AJ's Dream" sidestory is pretty much focused on stopping her from going Nightmare, but we do see an alternate version of her who went nightmare, becoming Nightmare Mirror (an Knight Templar who seeks to force everypony in the multiverse into being perpetually honest).
"Generational Transitions" reveals that the Good Counterpart of the Nightmare form is transformation into an Alicorn. None of the Mane Cast are capable of this yet, but Star Catcher managed to return to her Celestia form in this fashion.
... Except not quite. It's revealed that Nightmarification is essentially an imperfect Alicornification, and purification by the Elements of Harmony "fixes" it and completes the Alicorn. Fluttershy is therefore actually a lesser Alicorn (though she doesn't seem to entirely know it and looks perfectly normal), which is part of why Luna and Celestia's speeches are so harsh: they don't want to risk Fluttershy doing something like that again.
The Nameless Passenger is ultimately revealed to be Twilight's potential future self and Nightmare, Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox (originally Nightmare Purgatory). She was consumed by her desire for revenge on Discord to the point she turned the Dark World into a "Groundhog Day" Loop to punish him for eternity, not caring who is killed, erased, or suffering in the process.
According to Word of God, anyone who can wield an Element can go Nightmare, regardless of gender or species. This is proven by the presence of Spike's Nightmare, Nightmare Banneret, among Paradox's Psycho Rangers.
A Rainbow Learns the Truth ends with a Tomato in the Mirror version of this: Rainbow Dash discovers she's been Nightmare Manacle the entire time without knowing it. Specifically, Eclipse's Nightmare Manacle.
Shining Armor seems to have a different version. When he gets pushed over the Rage Breaking Point (normally by to attempted murder of people he loves), he unlocks his true power, giving him enough magical power to overload a magic suppressor that Makarov put on him and crush his superweapon, but also becomes ruthless and viscous to the point that both times it happens, he's tried to crush the attacker to death in stark contrast to his Thou Shalt Not Kill mentality (in fact the first time he did it seems to have inspired it and be why he had mental blocks on most of his power in the first place). Tamer than most examples because he's at least able to focus on the enemy and has never attacked an ally.
Surprise Creepy: "gniteeM tsriF-First Meeting" is over all the same as Shining Armor's first story...then ends with some...thing stalking Sweetie Belle in the middle of the night, erasing her hoof prints, before saying she's supposed to exist and vanishing into thin air.
Clover's Gaiden Story's first chapter involves Pinkie Pie discovering she was Clover's Imaginary Friend brought to life by the world changing spell, resulting in a Break the Cutie and her being Driven to Suicide. While the others help her out of it, it's still surprisingly disturbing.
Sympathy for the Devil: Dark World!Fluttercruel's reaction to Discord being mortally wounded by Rancor is seems to get this reaction from the heroes despite everything she's done. Especially Applejack who actually KNOWS how she feels.
During Dark World's Final Battle, the Mane Cast have varying measures of this for Nightmare Paradox's Psycho Rangers, particularly for Nightmare Manacle, Mirror, and Banneret.
Take a Third Option: Luna is left with the option of leaving Pip alone until he's an adult or spend time with him and be labeled a molester by the tabloids. She decides to take on the form of a filly to spend time with him in a way the tabloids won't be able to muck up.
Take Me Instead: In Pinkie Pie's Loose Canon Side Story, Pinkie begs Anarchy to erase her instead after he accidentally erases StarSong. Anarchy wants to, as she was his original target but he can't reverse it.
Everything Princess Gaia does, especially the Everkind Forest, might be a Take That to certain other girls' cartoons about saccharine worlds where everyone is permanently happy and life is just a succession of parties. This is not only profoundly unrealistic and wrong, it's also extremely boring. Among other things, she has dolls in the likeness of the G3 My Little Ponies.
"Nightmare House" has several towards the the IDW Comicbook, specifically the existence of the Nightmare Forces (though Alexwarlorn is generally a fan of the comics and integrated several aspects of it into the story).
There have been two of these to the webcomic The Night The Magic Died. The first one occurs during the Shining Armor arc, where an exaggerated version of Nahmat's earlier characterization is erased by the Blank Wolf. The second one occurs during Button Mash's chapter, where Celestia points out the number of holes in the idea of Equestria existing in a dead universe and the entire sky being created by magic.
Take That, Critics!: Inverted In-Universe. Chrysalis gets very angry when the other ponies start declaring Celestia weak. Since by belittling Celestia, they're also belittling Chrysalis's accomplishment of defeating her.
Tanks, but No Tanks: Committed in-universe by Shining Armor when he mistakenly calls an APC a Tank. Well, in fairness to him, not only does Equestria lack any kind of armoured fighting vehicles at the time (and with the whole concept being very recent), but he's trained to fight on hoof, meaning it's not his department anyway. And he does eventually learn his lesson.
Tarot Motifs: The Alicorns are based off this. Celestia is the 19th, the Concept of the Sun, and Luna is the 18th, Concept of the Moon. The others are the High Priestess Mare - Abbatissa, the Empress Mare - Imperatrix, the Star Mare - Galaxia, the Temperance Mare - Cadence, Wheel of Fortune Mare - Rota Fortuna, Justice Mare - Justitia, the Lovers Mare - Venus, Strength / Fortitude Stallion - Leo Fortis, The Tower Stallion - Turris, Death Stallion - Mortis, the Hanged, the Man Stallion - Pensilis, the Chariot Stallion - Currus, the Devil Stallion - Morning Star, the Hermit Stallion - Eremo, the Fool Stallion - Puerilis, the Emperor - Princeps, and the Judgement Stallion - Judicium. Their Parents represent the Hierophant - the unnamed father, and the World - Fauna Luster.
Twilight Sparkle also tells Trixie that she best represents the thirteenth Tarot; Death. Or rather, Change. It certainly plays into both ideas, that The Great and Powerful Trixie is no more, and The One and Only Trixie is starting her recovery.
Fluttershy/Princess Gaia, now permanently a lesser Alicorn, represents one of the minor Arcana: the Queen of Cups.
Rota Fortuna performs a Tarot reading during Nightmare Eclipse's defeat. The readings are the Devil and the reversed Magician, Death and the Magician, and finally the Devil and Justice with Justice fluctuating between upright and reversed.
Rainbow Dash: Ick! I don't mind cute, but this is going to make my teeth fall out!
Tele-Frag: Twilight Sparkle mentions this can happen if you teleport somewhere far away that you've never been too before. Apparently, there are failsafes built into teleportation spells to prevent this, but teleporting somewhere far away the user has never been carries a risk of this. This is shown when she can't teleport to Hoofington to get to Trixie but can teleport back to Ponyville from there (with Trixie in toe) just fine.
Twilight is also unwilling to teleport up to Nightmare Whisper during their battle, for fear of this happening between her and the Nightmare's mane. Pinkie Pie has another idea, however.
Teleport Spam: Twilight Sparkle (and her dark world version, Twilight The Unicorn) uses this technique when needed, being her default way to avoid attacks directed at her. During the Dark World arc, it actually becomes a weakness when Traitor Dash faces her, since she had a thousand years to learn her teleport patterns, making her predictable.
Tempting Fate: Lampshaded when Pandora shows up to help Shining Armor with Makarov.
Makarov: I would not abandon ship if the next explosion caused the backup engines to fail!
*Explosion blows up the back up engines*
'''Shining Armor: What the hay was that?!
Makarov: It was not you?
Pandora: Hey, don't look at me, you're the one who tempted fate, Nameless!...Seriously, you shouldn't do that, especially if you have as much bad karma as Nameless does. Why do you think so many baddies end up falling off conveniently placed cliffs?
Terminator Twosome: A rather unique variation in that the two are the same pony from two different potential futures. The Nameless Passenger and Benevolent Interloper turn out to be Nightmare Eclipse (Twilight's potential future Nightmare self) and Princess Amicitia (her potential future Alicorn self and the defeated Nightmare Eclipse). The former was trying to continue her "Groundhog Day" Loop plan by convincing Twilight to become her and the latter trying to lead Twilight to defeat Eclipse, which would result in her future. After becoming Amicitia, Twilight does the Interloper's interventions herself to close the Stable Time Loop and set Eclipse's defeat in stone.
That Mare Is Dead: Trixie about the Great and Powerful Trixie. She's still trying to figure out who the One and Only Trixie is.
The mane cast and Trixie sing the show's theme song in the penultimate episode during a party celebrating Trixie's recovery and Heel-Face Turn. Considering it was chosen by Pinkie Pie, this makes perfect sense.
Princess Celestia sings the G1 My Little Pony theme song to break Gaia's brainwashing on the foals that were once Ponyville.
Theory of Narrative Causality: Discussed and Played for Drama, the setting only exists because of the Shadows-Who-Watch (the readers), and entire timelines, including all the individuals in them, will get erased if there is no longer sufficient conflict to drive a story. Or at least that's what Nightmare Whisper believed, and she wasn't exactly sane at the time. G3 was seemingly erased for this reason, but it seems it had more to do with the spell that made it a utopia warped reality to such a degree that it broke and made the reality cancerous rather than it simply being a utopia.
There Are No Therapists: Subverted, Princess Celestia ordered a large number of therapist ponies to go to areas effected by Discord's power and help heal those afflicted.
And it turns out that the Interviewers acted as therapists to all of the actual therapists who had been affected, since they needed help too.
Third-Person Person: Trixie does this even after her Heel-Face Turn, only then she refers to herself as "The One and Only Trixie", the thing Twilight called her when breaking through to her when Loneliness was trying to pull her back into her grasp.
As there is no dedicated narrator, EVERYONE in the audio adaptation. The voice of the character in the first person 'interview' in each chapter also narrates the third person omniscient sections, leading to instances where characters' voices refers to themselves and their actions in third person.
This Is Unforgivable!: Shining Armor and company have this reaction to Makarov's attempt at slaughtering a village of innocent civilians to Leave No Witnesses as well as the true nature of hisAlicorn Cyborgs. Shining also points out that if an Equestrian or a Neighponese says this, due to their cultures having forgiveness as a virtue, they MEAN IT. Best shown by the fact he forgave Dima for threatening Twilight, but now considers Makarov beyond forgiveness.
Thou Shalt Not Kill: Comes up quite a few times in the fic, from Rarity and Rainbow Dash now possessing the will to kill, to a VERY intense discussion between a field doctor and a hoofmaiden over their oath to help others.
Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox, the mastermind of the "Groundhog Day" Loop Dark World!Discord was trapped in. During the Final Battle, she reveals she has the ability to stop and turn back time, but it appears to be a last resort power of hers and she doesn't rely on it.
Timey-Wimey Ball: Since the Alicorns and Draconequui exist in a separate plane of existence, except when they manifest in the mortal world, they experience time differently from mortals. This is shown when Celestia relives G1 and G2 after the G3 world is erased, and when Rancor emerges in the Dark World as a teenager mere days (at most) after all the cosmically-inclined beings there felt her birth. Celestia states that it's even more complicated than that, saying that, if she were back in the spirit world, she could take Smartypants from her deathbed and give it to her as a child. Celestia says that's about as simple as she can make it, as mortals like Twilight simply can't understand it until after death.
Stated to be the reason Twilight the Unicorn and the defeated and purified Nightmare Eclipse merged into one; Eclipse was Twilight's future self.
All the intricacies of the different timelines and how they connect to each other could probably fill up an entire page of this wiki.
While Discord is the only truly evil Draconequus, they're still not really nice guys with the exception of Pandemonium. She's generally a much nicer person than her siblings and the worse thing she does is accidentally drive ponies insane trying to inspire their art, which she is rather frustrated about.
It's hard to imagine, but Princess Celestia does this in Luna's vision/nightmare. After Luna takes a Face-Heel Turn in the nightmare, Celestia reveals that she had a thousand years to plan for an usurpation attempt by a rogue alicorn. Cue Celestia's transformation into Orion.
G3 Pinkie, Thistle Whistle, Sky Wishes, Star Catcher, Wysteria, Rarity, Spike, and Minty, something commented upon by Strife. Star Catcher especially considering she turns out to be an Amnesiac Goddess whose true powers slowly awaken as it progresses before she fully awakens her true form, Celestia herself.
The Crusaders during the wedding, once they get serious in response toSweetie and Spike getting brainwashed by Chrysalis. They rescue Spike, taking out two Changelings on their own in the process.
Dark World!Derpy does this in 'The Ultimate Foe' when she passes the Rage Breaking Point and beats the Valeyard to death. Discord uses the opportunity to give Fluttercruel a lecture on the dangers of accidentally invoking this in the enemy.
Discord: Fluttercruel, learn from his defeat. Making your opponent angry and trying to wear down their emotions is a valuable battle tactic, but not everyone reacts to it the same way. Some go into a completely berserk frenzy and lose track of their reason. But the most dangerous will do what Miss Hooves just did; a calm fury. They have all the advantages of being furious, but keep their reason and clarity. A person in a berserk rage will try to beat you to death. A person in a tranquil fury will try to kill you, but be smart and very thorough about it.
Rarity and Angry Pie go into it in 'Angry-Cruel Love'. Rarity because she discovered Fluttershy is dead and Fluttercruel is Fluttershy's Child by Rape by Discord (and tortured Fluttershy) and Angry Pie because Discord promised to revive her foals and make them immortal if she killed the heroes.
Trauma Conga Line: Not only was Rainbow Dash forced to abandon her friends thanks to a Sadistic Choice, Discord tells all of Cloudsdale she pretty much doomed Equestria to save them, causing the poor girl to see her entire hometown completely furious with her. Discord then proceeds to twist the knife further by forcing her to watch her hometown be Driven to Madness right in front of her while being helpless to do anything about it. Then she heads home to Ponyville to try and reunite with the others to do something about it, only to find them just as crazy as Cloudsdale. Is it any wonder the poor girl spent most of the series in a Heroic BSOD?
Trickster Mentor: Strife seems to take this role to Luna, manipulating her into learning a lesson about humility and more about the mortal ponies its her duty to protect.
Triumphant Reprise: The Princess Gaia Arc ends with Fluttershy and Fluttercruel singing a reprise of "So Many Wonders", summing up what they've learned throughout their storyline.
True Companions: Since this was a central theme of the original series, it's a given that there would be groups of these all over the place: the Mane Cast (eventually including Trixie and Fluttercruel), the Cutie Mark Crusaders (plus Spike and Silver Spoon), Shining Armor's Misfit Actual squadron, the main G3 characters in Generational Transitions, the main G2 ponies in "Gaiden: 7 Dreams/Nightmares", etc.
Unbuilt Trope: The Nightmare Eclipse saga was all written long before many of the The Infinite Loops were written and well before the author became aware of them (any references to it were added afterwards), and yet Eclipse makes for a deconstruction of a looper, having grown stronger and more experienced each loop to the point she requires Twilight performing a Crisis Crossover with six sets of Elements and Rancor's intervention to finally defeat, but also come to see the others in each loop as nonpeople except for her companions which are every bit as bad as she is.
Uncanny Family Resemblance: Trixie's sisters, despite not being twins, all look a lot alike. This really annoys Trixie and is why she wants to stand out so much.
Unusual Euphemism: Fluttercruel uses "dragon fewmets" in Pinkie Pie's healing chapter, afterwhich Fluttershy threatens to wash her mouth out with soap for using foul language.
Utopia Justifies the Means: Princess Gaia is an interesting example of this. She wants everyone to be happy (what with being Fluttershy), and while she's not as extreme as many other examples of the trope, she does think that anyone who isn't happy must be FORCED to be happy, and that in order to achieve this goal, magically turning ponies into foals in both body and mindis a-ok! In an even straighter example of this trope, her Knight Cherilee actually attempts to KILL the Mane Six because they were distrupting Gaia's Lotus-Eater Machine.
Values Dissonance: In-Universe, this happens when Twilight reads about Bright Eyes' family keeping their supplies to themselves despite the apocalyptic disaster the world's suffered. While to her, this is greedy and selfish, the rest of the group point out that times were different and it would've been dangerous to give away supplies back then.
Comically subverted with the prophecy Princess Thalia (Pinkie's potential future Alicorn incarnation) gave her potential followers, the Love Cats. It is very specific right down to mentioning that Moth and her fellow reformed Changelings aren't bad guys. Literally. It specifically says the Changelings are the bad guys 'except the one who looks like Bon Bon and her friends.'
Princess Luna: We wondered which of our siblings or potential siblings would make such an oddly specific prophecy.
Vampire Invitation: Variant. Changeling's mind magic, to be truly effective, requires the victim to 'let them in', such as saying 'I'll do anything for you'. This even applies to Queen Chrysalis, who is noted as being a powerful mutant. The one time she didn't do this, it resulted in the brainwashing breaking down and it apparently took far more time and effort to make it work.
"Nightmare House", which involves Nightmare Eclipse and her Psycho Rangers discussing an attempt by Eclipse to find a Nightmare of Rarity and failing, then her interacting with Nightmare Mirror. In a twist, we're shown them trying to imitate their old lives to some degree...and failing due to what they've become.
The two "Nightmare World" one shots, which show a What If?Alternate Universe were the Nightmare in question won. Mirror eradicates deceit after a thousand years and then turns herself in, and Granfalloon forcibly remakes the world into G3, then turning herself into G3 Pinkie.
Loneliness has a habit of losing her cool whenever Twilight managed to break through her mind games. But she really loses it when Twilight begins to break through to Trixie, breaking Trixie's leg and trying to murder Twilight in a brutal and sadistic manner.
It's revealed that Discord went completely berserk when Mimic managed to knock out his tooth in ancient times, the first time he'd ever been hurt by anyone. Unfortunately for Mimic, she didn't survive the encounter.
The foal inside Nightmare Whisper's heart (who had been angry, but relatively self assured before that) throws a major temper tantrum once the mane cast give their group "World of Cardboard" Speech, screaming her head off at them to shut up over and over again.
Nightmare Mirror speaks with a refined tone throughout her fight with Applejack and Orangejack, which she fights with calm confidence. But she gradually grows angrier as they continue to resist, which is mirrored (no pun intended) by her slipping back into a country drawl more frequently.
In the Dark World, Traitor Dash slowly loses it over the course of the Duel of Tears, as she desperately tries to kill Twilight, all while trying to convince her, the others, and herself that it's the right thing to do. Twilight actually invokes this to defeat her, and then uses the memory spell to restore her.
The Defense Attorney in the trial for Starlight's soul in her 7 Dreams/Nightmare story has one when Starlight declares herself guilty and is forgiven by the Prosecutor. She goes on a tirade, flipping the table over and screaming Starlight wasn't supposed to be forgiven...then laughs and says it was fun. Turns out 'she' was Havoc the entire time (the Father of All Alicorns was the Prosecutor) and He pretended to have a breakdown when he saw he was losing because It Amused Him.
The Nameless Passenger/Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox has several, but always manages to recover. However, as the Final Battle rages on and the heroes keep countering her attempts and the Big Damn Heroes keep showing up, her composure begins to slip more and more frequently as her frustration and anger mounts. The Benevolent Interloper even mentions she's getting more and more desperate. This reaches its zenith when Minty Pie enters the battle and refuses to stay down, ultimately thwarting her attempt to corrupt Twilight.
Makarov has several throughout the story, notably when Dima sacrificed himself to save Gilda, ruining his script and causing him to suffer a Glamour Failure, a breakdown he never recovers from. However his biggest one comes when he's mortally wounded by the Wolf and finds his Death Dome can only stall it now that it's after him. He goes from giving an A God I Am speech to begging Shining to save his sorry flank in seconds. To add to it, Makarov's stolen Lights of Existence start bleeding out of him, resulting in his mind literally starting to slowly fall apart.
The Master has one when Minuette resists his attempts to tempt her into opening her fob watch and become him again, eventually losing his cool and screaming at her.
The Master: YOU EQUINE FOOL! You are ME! You are the MASTER!
The Master: You can't do this. You can't do this! IT'S NOT FAIR!
Queen Chrysalis has one when Blueblood arrives with the real Cadence at the Wedding, becoming so enraged she tries to vaporize him, blowing her cover and forcing her to reveal herself. She manages to regain her composure and the advantage, but she spends most of the chapter openly furious.
She has a bigger one when Applebloom arrives in the throne room and frees Applejack, ruining her thus far flawless plan to defeat the heroes (which was on the verge of allowing her to kill Twilight and brainwash her team according to the Interviewers). She goes completely berserk and flies into a psychotic rage trying to kill her. After Applejack and Applebloom use AJ's Living Lie Detector powers and the Apple Family's Power of Love shatter her self deception that her past is dead, she snaps and ends her scene laughing with an insane smile, swearing to make Twilight suffer. Even her Changelings are freaked out. Noticeably, she doesn't seem to fully recover from this breakdown and shows signs of Sanity Slippage afterwards. Such as responding to Maua, her Childhood Friend who she drained as a filly and openly mentioning things she knows via her Peggy Sue status.
Her biggest comes when Applejack points out her ascension into an Alicorn wasn't just the power boost she expected it to be and came with a new heart. Finding herself unable to enjoy her victory as she actually cares that she caused untold amounts of misery to get to it, she loses and goes berserk.
Villains Out Shopping: A Running Gag in the Dark World Series is someone wondering what Discord's doing or he'll be back soon...only for it to cut to him having a night out withFluttercruel with a surprising lack of torture and maiming. The two instances that most fit this trope are cutting to him and her playing video games at an arcade and them skiing. All in all, he only does one genuinely evil thing the entire time.
"Nightmare House". It takes place before (or possibly during) the main Dark World story and depicts Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox and her Psycho Rangers merely talking at their house between Paradox's interventions in Dark World. They simply hang out. Though it's a somewhat dark in that the focus is more or less on them trying to play the part of their old lives but being unable to due to what they've become.
Villain Override: Dark World!Fluttercruel and Angry Pie do this to an army of zombies (apparently they were Discord's birthday present to her her), literally remote controlling them.
Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox has apparently done this to Discord throughout the "Groundhog Day" Loop by 'copy and pasting' his actions from a previous loop over top of his present ones to stop him from 'breaking character'. She tries to do this to him during the final confrontation with him, but Rancor threw everything so 'off-script' that none of her 'footage' worked and he was able to finally Out Gambit her.
To give some insight on how evil Paradox's Villain Override was, in a flashback we see Discord about to have a Heel-Face Turn. He asks a filly to teach him how to be good. The next thing he knows, the filly's gone, there is blood on his hands, and Nightmare Paradox's voice tells him not to break character. In other words, she basically forced him to kill that filly.
Chrysalis is capable of a Fighting a Shadow variant by infusing a Changeling with her essence, making them stronger and allowing her to directly control them, though they're still far weaker than she is.
Villain Protagonist: Luna in her second sidestory after her Face-Heel Turn. She's the one whose POV we're seeing from, despite the fact she's trying to murder her sister, in the process vaporizing innocent ponies without a care, forcing Celestia to fight back to protect Equestria from her. Of course, it turned out to be All Just a Dream.
The versions of the Mane Six in the Epilogue timeline.
Princess Gaia gets three. The first is a ponified version of "Come Little Children" from Hocus Pocus (though, ironically, she really does mean exactly what it says, making it less of a Villain Song than it originally was). The second is a completely fanmade Dark Reprise of "So Many Wonders" used to try and re-hypnotize Applejack. The third extended version of her Dark Reprise and appears later when she hypnotises Raven.
Cheerilee, while acting as The Dragon to Princess Gaia, gets one during her fight with the group.
Earlier in "Off Da Rails" Dark World!Discord and Fluttercruel, in Sparkler's body, have one inspired by Joker's Song called "Disharmonious Duet" about the love of sadistic games both share though given The Reveal, Discord was likely only singing along for her sake.
Cruel Eyes/D___t's Shadow of Existence gets one in Part 6 of Bright Eyes' Gaiden as well in the form of a Dark Reprise of Bright Eyes' "In the Forest" song from My Little Pony Tales in an attempt to convince Bright Eyes she subconsciously wished for the apocalypse to happen, in an attempt to drive her over the Despair Event Horizon so he could consume her infant Concept and become real again.
Queen Chrysalis gets one called "Changelings Are Alive" at the end of her Origins Episode.
Gets another one in 16, which is basically her indulging in some Evil Gloating for her own amusement.
One that stands out is a Dark Reprise of Twilight's BBBFF Song sung while making a brainwashed Shining Armor try to kill her.
A Brainwashed and Crazy Sweetie Belle gets several, including a lyricless version of 'Sweet Music' that she uses to keep the Changelings fully charged due to carrying the love of her family and a duet with Queen Chrysalis in 'Magic Duel' meant to scare Trixie and Cadence and encourage a Brainwashed and Crazy Twilight.
The Shadows of Oblivion get a good one called "This Is the End Of Your Show" in "Forgotten Pink Ponies" based off "It's A B-Movie" were they welcome the Heart World Pinkie clones from "Too Many Pinkie Pies" to Oblivion and taunt them with the fact they no longer exist and are doomed to wander Oblivion for eternity. Even more effective given most of the singers are twisted Empty Shells of the G3 ponies, adding to the wrongness of it.
The Dazzlings/Sirens naturally get a few in their focus chapter, the stand out one being "I Am A Siren" though that one is more of a Start of Darkness"I Am Becoming" Song. Their canon Villain Song "Welcome to the Show" also appears but doesn't count as a villain song, as it was retroactively made a Dark Reprise of a song they sang while still normal rock stars. However, they do have a pretty good Dark Reprise later on.
Ironically, it turns out its not so much one for Discord anymore, but for Nightmare Paradox, who has reduced Discord to a Puppet King.
Cadence's version of a Bad Future shows' Chrysalis: a world were all non-Changelings are reduced to cattle, every being in Equestria has had the emotions torn out of them, Sweetie Belle became Chrysalis' second in command, and Chrysalis herself became a god stronger than even Discord. To say Cadence is horrified is an understatement.
Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: Laughter!Applejack's group appears to have done this, as they all are high school students who ended up ending an Ancient Conspiracy meant to keep Earth Ponies in the dark about Unicorns and Pegasi, the Unicorns and Earth Ponies about Griffins, and everyone about the dragons.
Wanting Is Better Than Having: Fluttercruel wanted to take control from the get go, but once she does, she finds out even that isn't enough to make her happy. If anything, it makes her more depressed.
The Watcher: The Interviewers. We know nothing about them, but they've made a habit of dropping hints for the characters to follow that ultimately lead them to the correct assumption. The most they've interfered is by giving Twilight Razzaroo's Apocalyptic Log, then vanishing mysteriously. The "interviewers notes" simply respond to her demands to know more about them with "You will know soon enough."
Well-Intentioned Extremist: Nightmare!Fluttershy, AKA Princess Gaia. She just wants to help everypony achieve their heart's desire...by trapping them forever in a dreamworld where their greatest fantasies come true...
Though, as Celestia pointed out in "Pearl Necklace Part 5", she was far more Well Intentioned than Extremist than most. Celestia's celebration for her is mainly because of how far down the slippery slope she didn't slip that any other pony likely would have.
Weirdness Magnet: Shining Armor in his own Arc. So far he's attracted the attention of an insane General Ripper and Super Soldier (who turns out to be an Equinoid Abomination a Hooviet experiment set loose from Pandora's box) who takes a tiny offense and tries to murder him for it with tripods powered by unicorn horns, been chased by a wolf-like entity trying to Retgone him, and has to meet with a spy to get intell in a supposed haunted Abandoned Hospital built on a convergence of leylines where magically sensitive individuals can supposedly see into other worlds. And that's not taking into account the craziness that is going to happen at the wedding...
The Doctor as well, being...well, the Doctor. And they meet, leading to this conversation after one of the Doctor's devices exploded when pointed at him:
Shining Armor: "Sorry, it was probably my fault, I tend to be attract weird happenings. It's annoying."
The Doctor: "Could say the same, actually. All things considered I tend to attract a lot more strange situations than I probably should...Ever been attacked by a small army just for stepping hoof in the wrong place?"
"Prologue" and its Sequel Episode "Generational Transitions". The first reveals that Pinkie Pie is the G3 Pinkie and that world was Retgoned because it was collapsing, the latter not only reveals that, but that Celestia was G3 Star Catcher and ends with Twilight being given Razzaroo's Apocalyptic Log, not only causing her to confront Celestia about Equestria's past, but revealing the Interviewers are far more than they seem.
"Mind Games Part 7", which reveals not only that Diamond Tiara's actions were the straw that broke the camels back when it came to her mother's sanity, but that Screwball tried to kill her and is now so lost in her insanity she doesn't remember. Discord also finally drops his facade and lets Diamond see his real intentions for her.
"Mind Games Part 8". Discord completely corrupts Diamond Tiara, and she releases him. Also, Golden Tiara fully regains her sanity, and upon remembering what she almost did when she went insane, her reaction is predictable.
Golden Tiara: "WHAT DID I ALMOST DO TO MY BABY?!"
"Angry Cruel Love". The all out battle between Discord's forces and the Dark World!Mane Six continues. Fluttercruel is revealed to be able to use the Stare (Discord ordered her to reserve it for a last resort) and Rarity's golems are revealed to be souls using her as a medium to materialize into the mortal plain through her powers. Rarity then kills Fluttercruel and takes the Element of Cruelty for herself. Meanwhile, Angry Pie and Twilight continue their fight, ending with Angry Pie tearing out her Element of Magic and leaving her for dead as she begins rapidly aging.
Both parts of "The Real Hoof Blues" also qualify for not only redeeming Pinkie Pie, but revealing The Voice's truemotivations for Twilight and all but confirming she was the otherBig Bad the Valeyard spoke of in his Final Speech. In addition, a second voice begins talking to Twilight to prevent her from falling for the Voice's attempts.
"Off Da Rails" is possibly the biggest Wham chapter yet. So, the Dark World Elements of Harmony are fighting through Discord's remaining Mooks to reach him when Fluttercruel turns out to be Not Quite Dead and possessing Sparkler's body. Just as the heroes are adjusting to this shock, Discord and Rancor show up to begin the Final Battle... only for Rancor to literally stab Discord In the Back and steal Destruction's power for herself. This takes everyone, even the Voice, by surprise. After Rancor returns to the Draconequi dimension, Discord reacts by giving his remaining power to Fluttercruel. Fluttercruel then goes after the heroes herself, has a Villainous Breakdown, and goes One-Winged Angel, transforming into a full Draconequs, something the Voice says isn't possible.
"Ruined Pearl Necklace" and "Crushed Pearl Necklace" both count. The former for revealing Pinkie is slowly dying of Rapid Aging due to her Element of Rage being damaged and Rainbow Dash returns to the fray, the latter for revealing what happened to Cruelty; she was hit with ALL of Sparkler's memories when she possessed her, which unDiscorded her (no one, not even Discord himself, knew it but she was BORN Discorded), leading her further into insanity. On top of that Pinkie Pie dies and Cruelty is killed once and for all (but at the cost of Sparkler's life), while Fluttershy's spirit takes Fluttercruel's soul to recondition her.
From the looks of things, the End of Days Arc is going to be a Wham Arc. "My Little Alicorn" has a Sea Pony deliver an ominous warning that an "Alicorn Witch" is on her way to destroy the world and that Discord actually made Celestia's prison a paradise and when she and Luna are released, they've been reduced to fillies and Celestia lost her memory. Then Shady's spirit shows up to try and get Discord to redeem himself and claims that, while she understands why Discord's considered a devil despite still loving him as her son, the Nameless Passenger is WORSE than he is! All this is in addition to the various hints being dropped about the Passenger's endgame in this and the previous chapters.
"Beating Up Discord" has Dark World!Discord finally die and the world revert to a more harmonic setting, but Discord is revealed to, on some level, regret his crimes and its implied that someone or something has trapped him in a "Groundhog Day" Loop. At the end, Pinkie Pie and her foals, playing a video game version of their friend's adventures, discover there's still a third disc left to play.
"Give A Reason" not only gives the Nameless Passenger a name — Nightmare Eclipse (though the heroes dub her Nightmare Paradox)—, but reveals how the "Groundhog Day" Loop started and that its been going on for what amounts to several hundredmillionyears! On top of that its revealed that Paradox isn't an alternate Twilight but a potential future Twilight who wants Twilight to become her and continue the loop.
"All My Friends Are Here": The Final Battle with Nightmare Paradox begins and its revealed that along the way, she's merged with versions of Fluttershy, Applejack, Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, and Spike who went Nightmare, giving her a team of Psycho Rangers. The chapter ends with everyone but Twilight and Applejack disabled and Paradox and her Nightmares seemingly preparing the Finishing Move. The presence of Spike's Nightmare (Nightmare Banneret) also reveals the fact any species can go Nightmare.
The most recent chapter "Friends VS Friends" ends with the use of the Elements of Harmony utterly obliterating the whole world, and Nightmare Paradox using this to force Twilight to become her and reset the time loop once more. Though it is implied that this actually was from a previous cycle.
"Shining Armor 13" not only delves into the mysterious break ins that happened, but ends with Cadence revealing the Wolf is still after Shining and proving it's not all in his head, because she saw it too.
"That Which Pierces All" sees Nightmare Eclipse and her Psycho Rangers defeated once and for all (along with every alternate version of her due to her merging with every Nightmare Purgatory the moment of their birth), but after the dust settles, Twilight's absorbed the purified Eclipse and undergoing Alicornification. Discord also implies that it's possible Alicorn!Trixie's Alicornification wasn't undone.
Dark World 34: Twilight becomes an alicorn of Magic, happy endings and friendship. RARITY becomes an Alicorn of the mortal experience and becomes the new queen of ALL of equestria. The elements of chaos are dismantled and purified within Rarity.
Shining Armor 14: The Wolf comes after Shining again, on the ship, it's heavily implied that Minuette is an amnesiac Time Lord, and the Hooviets threaten Twilight in order to get to Shining, mailing him pictures of her sleeping.
"Duel to the Death at the Dawn of Time": Twilight/Amicitia's "greatest foe" turns out to be a younger Cadence, who was convinced magic was inherently evil and tried to kill Amicitia to prevent its existence. After Amicitia barely defeats her, her Light of Existence goes to live a mortal life to teach her a lesson, while her Shadow somehow clings to sentience and is recovered by Pandora, who gives it its own Light, creating Chrysalis. Meanwhile, Amicitia is revealed to be the Benevolent Interloper, creating a Stable Time Loop to insure her own existence. Oh, and it's strongly implied she's the Interviewers as well.
Shining Armor 15-1: The anti-Hooviet Rebellion and Mother Deer are introduced and revealed to be the ones who threatened Twilight in 14 in order to enable them to meet with Shining and a major battle with the Hooviets begins.
Shining Armor 16-2: After light-hearted fun in part 1 of the chapter and a good chunk of this part, serious Mood Whiplash kicks in as the group finds the downed Defiant with all hands onboard (including Bond's parents) long dead, and more importantly discover that Makarov's endgame involves using chemical weapons to kill every dragon on the planet, including Spike, which would involve gassing Ponyville as well. And then, Makarov uses his powers to literally spring a ambush from nowhere and forces Misfit Actual to surrender themselves in order to spare the rest of the fleet. And when they do, Makarov forces Shining to watch as he subjects the rest of the squad to No Holds Barred Beatdowns, including shooting Running Gag's wing off. And the chapter ends with Makarov making some ominous remarks and knocking Shining out.
Shining Armor 17-1 is a big one: Shining Armor discovers, the Interviewers have been interviewing him on his way to Makarov's flagship and is capable of knowing they're there, unlike anyone else. The Interviewers reveal that the SA Arc and the series proper run on San Dimas Time because Shining Armor's condition means he's in the past catching up to the present, destroying any sense of Foregone Conclusion. Makarov begins his endgame, starting a global war with an attempted dragon genocide, threatening to sever the connection to the Heart World, and traps the battlefield under his Iron Curtain, making him near omnipotent. The chapter ends with Shining Armor, after spending the chapter being Forced to Watch Makarov kill thousands of innocents, snaps, smashes Makarov's super weapon and attempting to kill him.
Shining Armor 19.2: Shining is revealed to have literallynot existed before the start of his story and had to spread out both ways from that point, something even Celestia doesn't know the clear details of. It's also revealed that Makarov's desmise may not have gotten the Wolf off Shining's tail, and that Celestia can't protect him from it.
Dark World/Light World 38, "The Connection", ends the Dark World side of the Dark Word-Shining Armor mega arc, finally revealing how Dark World and the main timeline are connected, as well as revealing the true identity of the Interviewers. Amicitia, wishing to create a timeline separate from Dark World where Discord lost, without lowering to Paradox's level and overwriting Dark World's existence, takes the only action she can — she blows herself up, causing a Literal Split Personality that creates the Interviewers, and Shining Armor, who the Interviewers insert into the timeline (thus explaining the above Tomato in the Mirror situation), so that his familial friendship will give Twilight the strength to resist Discord long enough for Luna's gambit with the friendship reports to work, also meaning that should the Wolf succeed in erasing him, it might cause the main timeline to turn into Dark World. The chapter then ends with the Interviewers starting the first of the Reharmonized interviews, bringing the series full-circle.
Wedding Episode 6: It's revealed Chrysalis somehow obtained more knowledge of how to deceive Twilight and does so (though she still ends up making Twilight suspicious of her). Not only that, but Chrysalis is revealed to have brainwashed Moondancer, who she uses to brainwash Spike. She also brainwashes Sweetie Belle after hearing her sing her family's song.
Wedding Episode 7: Chrysalis manages to brainwash Applejack and Twilight — and on top of that also seems to have brainwashed the Unicorn Interviewer.
Wedding Episode 10: The Changeling invasion becomes an all out war, as Chrysalis uses her brainwashed pawns to neutralize Celestia and the un-brainwashed Elements, uses Shining's power to blast Luna and The Cavalry away (like what happened to her in canon) with only Twinkle Shine's group capable of saving them, and biggest shock of all, the Unicorn Interviewer's attempt to keep Chrysalis from continuing to use her results in the Interviewers no longer being outside time. Which among other things means that the interviews are now writing themselves.
Wedding Episode 11 reveals just how it is that Chrysalis knows so much more than she should — in the timeline corrupted by the Shadow of Chernobull, Chrysalis fought Makarov, who was so enraged by her ability to fight him to a standstill (and point out all of the plot holes he created) that he warped reality to wipe her and the Changelings out of existence, and while she was stuck in the limbo between life and death, she remembered her true origin, granting her knowledge of the Heart World. And if that wasn't bad enough, the true extent of her planning is revealed, showing that she's taken every measure to not only keep the Royal Guard and Equestria at large ignorant of the invasion, but has also manipulated the Equestrian military and intelligence networks to fortify and cut off Equestria from its allies. However, the heroes also manage to escape the Wedding Hall with the help of the Hoofmaidens and it's revealed Princess Luna and The Cavalry survived (though are now extremely far from Canterlot), leaving Equestria's fate uncertain.
"Behind Enemy Lines" reveals that Misfit Actual weren't thrown out by Shining's shield and are mounting a counterattack, meaning the heroes aren't alone.
"Dances With Ponies": Chrysalis reveals taking over Canterlot isn't her endgame and she has further plans, and is playing her own kind to her own ends. It's also revealed that Chrysalis used Twilight to steal the Elements of Harmony. Also, Moth reveals her true form to the group and begins giving them information to help fight back against the Changelings.
Weeding Episode 16 reveals, via an image of a potential Bad Future, just what Chrysalis is planning — to enact a ceremony to suck the emotions out of every living thing in Equestria, becoming a god in the process, raising the stakes considerably. On the plus side, the Earth Pony and Pegasus Interviewers recruit help from Filthy Rich's group and the Wonderbolts (respectfully), while Cadence is able to free Twilight from Chrysalis' mind control, so there's more hope than there was before.
Wedding Episode 17: While Twilight is freed from Chrysalis' control, a backup spell in her mind makes her think that Cadence is Chrysalis, and she tries to kill her. Fortunately, Cobweb turns out to be Trixie, who realized something was wrong after Chrysalis' attempt to break her via Twilight and came back in disguise. She and Cadence then work together to free Twilight for good.
Wedding Arc: Notes Get Scrambled: A more subtle one. Fluttercruel reveals her existence to the group outside the mane six.
Wedding Arc: Orange Butterfly: Scootaloo learns to fly and saves Sweetie Belle. The Changelings are also seemingly exposed thanks to Scootaloo's actions, but Sweetie Belle is still supporting Chrysalis...without brainwashing!
Wedding Arc: Sisters: Rarity talks Sweetie through her Stockholm Syndrome and the Changelings have been revealed to Canterlot. However, the biggest wham moment? Scootaloo EARNED HER CUTIE MARK! Lampshaded by Pinkie after her Pinkie Sense in reaction to Scootaloo flying, earning her Cutie Mark, or both went off:
"Misfit vs Kabuto": Professor Kabuto is defeated and the resulting Superpower Meltdownturns him into an Earth Pony, but more importantly, it's revealed that Weaver, Diver, and Bombardier, three guards on Misfit's side, are actually benevolent Changelings trying to live peacefully in Equestria abiding by the law. It's also revealed that an Equestrian general named Lone Ranger was a traitor who aided the Changelings in their invasion trying to wipe them out and prove the guard's heroism to the populous.
Wedding: Queen's Last Performance: The group storm Chrysalis' throne room and confront her as the Queen prepares for her Last Villain Stand. It's then revealed during the following confrontation that the Changelings aren't a separate species, but another tribe of ponies. Shining Armor is finally freed and restrains Chrysalis as the mane cast unleash the Elements of Harmony on her.
Wedding: The Chrysalis Is Broken: The Elements of Harmony, rather than defeating Chrysalis, fulfill her true goal of completing her ascension to alicornhood, transforming her into Queen Cadenza, Cadence's Evil Twin. However, as Applejack and Half-Light Dusk explain, this also forces her to develop a heart and conscience, which forces her to truly face all the horrible things she's done, triggering her final Villainous Breakdown. Furthermore, Cadence realizes she can use their connection to challenge Chrysalis/Cadenza for the position of Queen of the Changelings, engaging her in a duel.
Finale 2: Chaos' Revenge: Discord and his allies begin hisendgameplan, turning the world into a twisted Crapsack World. This plan is so horrific, it appears the Eldersthemselves have mobilized to help stop it. The chapter ends with the CMC seemingly the only ones that can save the world now. Also, a group of Nightmares seem to be involved (ironically seemingly on the CMC's side in some fashion.
A Rainbow Learns The Truth/Nightmare World: Rainbow Dash: Rainbow Dash discovers what's in the Chains of Love Orphanage: 171,015 Scootaloos. She then makes another shocking discovery: she and Pinkie endured and dished out more than they should in the fight, she seems to be regenerating even from a terminal velocity crash into the ground, and her Cutie Mark is inverted. She then realizes the Awful Truth: she's been a Nightmare the entire time, and then begins to flashback to Dark World and what seems to be a previous loop, revealing she's Eclipse's Nightmare Manacle and not the main timeline Rainbow Dash trapped in an altered world by Discord's world altering spell as it seemed.
Another one comes a little earlier revealing Paradox is truly Twilight's potential future self. Interesting in that its both a Call Backto Discorded Ponies and one line split between two characters to show how they're the same person.
Nightmare Paradox: I remember wondering if these were the lessons Celestia had intended for us to learn-
Twilight: -and wondered why our coat was turning gray.
From "Bright Eyes part 6": "I am the first born son of Fear and Nothingness," The eldest son of the draconequi, the concept of total freedom through imagination apart from reality, makes himself known.
"Shining Armor 13" Cadence proving the Wolf isn't just in Shining Armor's head, and it's still after him.
Cadence: Hey Shining... was there a dog behind you? I could've sworn I saw one when I was coming back down...
From "Clover part 1" we have the meta origin of Pinkie Pie.
Clover/Minty: "I…I… don't understand how can this be? ... You were my imaginary friend.
From Shining Armor 18.1 the reveal of who Minuette actually is when her pocket watch begins trying to tempt her to open it and so she can stop Makarov:
The Master: Open it, and summon me and receive my majesty!
Celestia: Shining Armor Sparkle, you were never meant to exist.
Wedding Episode Six: The reveal that Queen Chrysalis knows more than she should.
Queen Chrysalis/Fake Cadence: Sunshine, sunshine, ladybugs awake! Clap your hooves and do a little shake!
Queen's Last Performance:
Twilight: (to Chrysalis)YOU'RE NOT ANOTHER SPECIES! YOU'RE ANOTHER TRIBE!
"Rainbow Dash Discovers The Truth" has one when Rainbow Dash notices her Cutie Mark (as well as her friends') is inverted and she and Pinkie survived a metric ton more damage than they SHOULD, followed by discovering the Chains of Love Orphanage contains 171,015 Scootaloos.
If that's not bad enough, then we are shown the true title of the chapter: Pony POV Series, Nightmare World: Rainbow Dash...needless to say, things don't seem to be getting better any time soon...
What If?: The Alternate Universes seen in the Truth are typically this. These range from simple changes ("What if Applejack had never left Manehatten?" or the classic "What If Celestia had fallen instead of Luna?") to vastly different ("What if Applejack was the Element of Loyalty instead of Rainbow Dash?" or "What if the G2 Apocalypse or G3 had never happened?"). A number of fanfics have explored a few of these, such as "Seeds of Magic", which answers the question of "What If Applejack became the Element of Magic and Celestia's student instead of Twilight?".
What Measure Is a Non-Super?: Subverted in an interesting way in the alternate worlds Applejack and Dark World!Applejack see in the truth. In the worlds were Applejack got one of the other's Elements (Big Mac normally taking hers), several have the one she 'replaced' is still an important asset. In Laughter!Applejack's world, Pinkamena (a Perky Goth version of Pinkie Pie) was essential to defeating the Stallions In Black and in Magic!Applejack's world, Twilight is a friend and assists with research on the various adventures her friend has.
What the Hell, Hero?: Pinkie Pie gets chewed out by Pinkamenia over always using her as a buffer against sad things she comes up against.
To say nothing of the team's reactions, Rarity's in particular, to learning Rainbow faked being Discorded.
Fluttershy and Fluttercruel call out Rainbow Dash for not trying to save Fluttershy when she fell off the clouds during the race when they were fillies. Subverted by the fact Fluttershy not only thanks her for how it happened (since it resulted in the Mane Cast getting their Cutie Marks), but she and Fluttercruel were just doing it to make Rainbow Dash realize and admit why she decided to stop being a loner and make friends with everypony else.
Rainbow gets another in the revised version of her True Healing chapter, this time from Applejack for her Smug Super act during the Mare-Do-Well incident, especially letting a balloon with a filly in it fall while she took time to sign autographs before saving her.
Twilight delivers one to Trixie after the battle with Cheerilee to try to shock her into deflating her ego and learning about friendship. Trixie notes that unlike other times people had said the same things to her, this time it actually hurt to hear.
Fluttercruel gets one from Applejack and Pinkie Pie for being responsable for Fluttershy being Nightmare Whisper in the first place.
Luna gives a very nasty one to Fluttershy and Fluttercruel that borders on a Hannibal Lecture as punishment for their wrongdoing.
Luna and Celestia's Father calls Luna out on assisting Celestia in unleashing what would become known as the Windigos on earth, knowing that, as pieces of Entropy, they could only end badly. He also calls her out on her lack of concern for mortal ponies and prideful nature, punishing her by reverting her to an infant.
During the Wedding, Scootaloo gives one to Dash for saving her and not the Brainwashed and Crazy Sweetie Belle. Rainbow Dash responds by reminding her she's her responsibility and asking if she'd be acting the same if Applebloom had been sacrificed for someone else.
What You Are in the Dark: Galaxia, Celestia sister, had the chance to smother an amnesiac Discord when he was a child and potentially end the suffering he could cause before it started...but she couldn't bring herself to murder a child.
Shining Armor was willing to sacrifice himself to save the world from Makarov, knowing if he did no one but Cadence and a few other characters would remember either of them ever existing. This trope is referenced directly by Minuette.
When Trixie doesn't show, Cricket and Monarch, the pair of Changeling brothers that had been assigned to kill her as she left Canterlot, are left contemplating what to do next. When faced with the prospect of condemning her to death by turning her in (thus passing the buck to someling else and letting them just move on), they can't bring themselves to do so, and in fact were facing a moral dilemma about killing her in the first place, and fake her death to allow her to go free. Since they thought Trixie had left, they had no reason to think anyone would ever know, especially Trixie herself, but still did the right thing and saved her life.
While Rome Burns: Princess Gaia's army overrunning and conquering Equestria is interlaced with scenes of the brainwashed Mane Cast having a civil, peaceful, even friendly time with Princess Gaia.
Even worse... it can at least be interpreted that they're not actually playing a game, but are in fact in command of Princess Gaia's forces and are now assisting her in making Equestria keel over.
Whole Plot Reference: The Rainbow Dash centered episodes of the Finale Arc turn out to be one to Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Movie: Rebellion, with Rainbow Dash playing the part of Homura. Some places like Rainbow Dash discovering the Awful Truth (in this case that she's been a Nightmare the entire time) and her fight with Pinkie are direct references. A parody of "Noi, the Clara Dolls!" (the song sung by Homulily's familiars) is even in the description of the chapter with the reveal. Given Alexwarlorn is a Madoka fan, this isn't a surprise.
Rarity briefly gains a phobia of gems after her corruption. Quite a few other ponies have the same problem with various things as a result of what Discord did to them. For example, Big Macintosh at the beginning of the story has only just been able to be in the same room as Winona, the family dog. Lyra and BonBon have had trouble with their relationship due to some... things that happened, Sweetie Belle wants to throw out all her dolls, and Doctor Whooves goes into a Lords Victorious sanity slip. He's openly afraid to even go outside.
Trixie is absolutely terrified of Ursas as a result of the Ursa Minor incident. Even Princess Gaia's cute, teddybear-sized versions scare her so badly, it takes Pinkie Pie singing a soothing version of "Giggle at the Ghosties" to her to calm her down.
Why Won't You Die?: Twilight has this reaction when hitting Trixie with the Memory Spell doesn't destroy Loneliness like she thought it would.
Rainbow Dash nearly becomes one when she spirals so deep into self-loathing that she convinces herself that betrayal and loyalty are the same thing. Fortunately, her friends are there to talk her down. Fluttershy undergoes the same transformation when she realizes the cruelty inherent in nature, but her friends aren't there to reverse it and Fluttercruel tries but is unable to help. Thus, Fluttershy becomes Nightmare Whisper.
Destruction, a literal example. He has an uncontrollable need to destroy things. If he doesn't, he goes into an animalistic, insane fury that he can't control and doesn't revert until he's destroyed something. He doesn't like it, but his mother, Entropy traps him in a black hole to let it build up so they can send him to destroy whatever they need him too.
The Worf Effect: Deconstructed with Spitfire, as the Wonderbolts' repeated failures when actually trying to do something heroic begin to wear her down and drive her into a Heroic BSOD.
World Building: The story has gradually built up its on world, complete with a pantheon of gods and a long history.
This, so far, seems to be the primary purpose of Shining Armor's side story.
World-Healing Wave: Dark World!Discord's death results in one that undoes a large amount of his magic.
Six sets of Elements being used to defeat Nightmare Eclipse results in a timeline healing wave that heals all the damage she did to the timeline, including finally breaking her "Groundhog Day" Loop.
Dark World!Rarity's rebirth as the Alicorn of the Mortal World, Queen Libra, results in one, repairing Discord's ecological damage.
World of Badass: Given the right motivation, anyponycan effectively become a Badass. This is referenced by Princess Celestia, who points out ponies have a surprising ability to rise to the occasion when its required of them. Apparently, this was one of the things her Mother, Fauna Luster, enjoyed rubbing in the face of Discord's Mother Entropy, who believed sentient life would inevitably destroy itself. Considering the story is in canon with G1 and G2 in addition to the events of the series proper, this is little surprise.
"World of Cardboard" Speech: Twilight has one after Fluttercruel makes her realize Fluttershy's motivation for becoming Princess Gaia/Nightmare Whisper, breaking her out of her mental block that'd plagued her the entire battle. This also activates the Element of Magic without the crown she normally needs. The others follow suit, activiating their own Elements with their own World Of Cardboard Speechs and finishing with Fluttercruel earning her Cutie Mark and realizing what it, and Fluttershy's, really mean, giving a speech of her own and summoning the Element Of Kindness.
In Part six of Dark World: Twilight gives one as she completes her Heel-Face Turn.
Twilight: I leave behind Tragedy, Master's tool, I leave behind Sparkle, Discord's toy, I am simply Twilight The Unicorn. I am me. I have magic to do and tragedies to face. I'm done hiding in the cage I've made for myself and those around me...I'm finally free. And I have some friends to make.
As do Dark World!Applejack and Rarity when its their turn to pull a Heel-Face Turn. Spike also gives one later when awakening as an Element of Generosity. Rainbow likewise gets one later after finally repairing her soul.
Dark World!Rainbow Dash Gets another one when she overcomes her fear of her Ender Dash form and use every ounce of her power to save her friends. She promptly uses said power to fly the Princesses into outer space so they can recharge directly from the sun and moon.
Rainbow Dash: No, I'm not going to give up! I can't...Pinkie, Fluttershy...Scootaloo...Derpy's filly I can't...I can't lose anypony else! "I'm not letting Twilight and the others alone…nothing's stopping me! Not bucking physics, not some 'Alicorn Witch'...and not me..." I said, thinking of why I was so scared of using every ounce of my power. I didn't want to hurt anyone, didn't want to KILL someone...But if I didn't, my friends were going to DIE. And I was MORE afraid of that! I let the Princesses go and got some distance, letting the power explode. I erupted in red energy and rainbow lightning. I was Ender Dash...and I felt different than before...I didn't feel cold inside...I just felt...free. Free to use this power for whatever I needed to. "Grab on! We're going to give this story a happy ending if it kills us!"
Bright Eyes gives one when she realizes that she's fighting Cruel Eyes/D___t's Shadow in her own mind and has been stupid letting him make the rules and is able to overcome the fear he's been causing her the entire time. She promptly uses the control over her mind this gives to reconfigure her weapon and give her the opening needed to finish him off.
Dark World!Twilight gives one in 'That Which Pierces All' after hijacking Paradox's time travel spell and combining it with her connection to Minty Pie, summoning the G1, G2, G3, and G4 Mane Casts to the present.
Twilight: You have power over time? The magic between friends transcends time, space, reality, death, beyond all barriers! Friendship doesn't just pierce the barrier between life and death, but all barriers, everywhere! This is a friendship that pierces the walls between worlds! We've been made, unmade, and remade, but the links we've forged between our souls are all still here! You have six Elements of Harmony that are absolute? We have six sets of hearts beating together in harmony! You have a gallery of Nightmares? We have a herd of FRIENDS! I'm not scared. Not with all of you by my side. And neither are they scared by my side!
World-Wrecking Wave: The disaster responsible for the destruction of the G2 Era's civilization. Not only was there mass destruction and untold numbers of ponies killed, crippled, or injured, it destroyed almost all technology and spawned hordes of mutations, including many of the creatures that live in Everfree and a supercharged, horrific strain of The Black Death called 'the Whispering Plague' (though thankfully, Sweetheart and family dealt with that).
It's revealed that Nightmare Paradox and her Psycho Rangers can create one of these capable of destroying all life on the planet. We only see it in a Fission Mailed though.
It turns out Discord, Nightmare Diamond Tiara, and Umbra Breeze's endgame is to set one of these off, twisting the world into a Crapsack World. They succeed in setting it off, but the CMC are told by what seems to be Havoc and Entropy they still have a chance to fix it.
Written by the Winners: In the Dark World, Discord does this with the sea ponies, convincing them that he's a benevolent ruler who liberated the world from the "order obsessed alicorns".
In the main timeline, it's shown that the Hooviets do this via propaganda, so they never have to admit to having lost at anything.
Would Hurt a Child: Most of the villains don't show mercy on children, though Nightmare Whisper is a major subversion.
Yandere: Loneliness. It's more maternal "love", but she reacts exactly the same.
Yin-Yang Bomb: Several of the Dark World Mane Six retain their Element of Chaos while obtaining an Element of Harmony, though Rainbow Dash is the only one with two polar opposites.
An accidental one happens when Dark World!Rarity fires the Destruction Spell at Odyne!Cruelty while she's being chased by the Elements of Harmony, the two colliding and triggering a massive explosion that kills Cruelty's body.
You Are in Command Now: In the Epilogue timeline, Cadence — who has since defeated Chrysalis and become Queen of the changelings — passes the crown onto one of her loyalist subjects when pulling a You Shall Not Pass on Discord and the corrupted Mane Six in order to give the remaining changelings a chance to escape.
You Are Not Alone: Twilight has to drive this into Trixie's head to bring her out of her Discording and give her the strength to defeat Loneliness.
After Nightmare Whisper is defeated, Fluttershy remains, still holding onto (and feeling) all the pain and suffering in Equestria. While her friends are trying to convince Fluttershy to let go, Pinkie Pie allows herself to be bound as well, sharing the burden so that Fluttershy does not have to suffer all of it alone.
One of the recurring themes of the series is that nopony can overcome what Discord did to them by themselves — every victim must have another pony's support. Each of the mane cast eventually devotes themselves to helping one or more other ponies through their troubles.
Nightmare Paradox: "This was supposed to be between us alone! A symbolic match of the minds between the deluded shadow and the enlightened self!"
Applejack: Whose life have ya been livin'? We're a herd. We don't do solo.
You Bastard: The readers of the POV series came up with some pretty elaborate ways to look at ways to stop Discord or fight him. These are played in a Madness Mantra when Twilight realizes that Discord's been living an endless loop trying to get himself out of being trapped. It's pretty convicting all things said.
There's also the fact most viewers wanted to make Discord suffer for what he's done. Paradox does just that...and taken it to an absolutely monstrous extreme.
After seemingly killing Gilda, General-Admiral Makarov justifies it by using the same arguments a lot of her detractors use to justify their hatred of the character, more or less asking why his action was considered evil when the Shadows hate her so much.
You Are What You Hate: Nightmare Eclipse/Paradox hates Discord to the point it's completely consumed her. In the process of punishing him for those crimes, she ultimately robs him of his freedom to the point she's the one forcing him to perform the actions she despises him for. Rota Fortuna outright calls her out on this.
Rota Fortuna: You condemn Discord for the murder and sin he's done onto others, yet you use those same ponies to die and suffer for your satisfaction. He only continued to make the ponies suffer because you allowed and then forced him to do so. The very sins you claim to punish him for are now your own.
You Can't Go Home Again: Discord is in this position: his family does not approve of his horrificactions, and are waiting to punish him the moment he returns to the spirit world. A reformed Discord 'got off' with several billion consecutive death sentences, so presumably the still villainous Discord would have an even worse fate awaiting him.
According to Word of God, this is where Sweetie Belle is emotionally now that her parents have returned. While she loves them, she's gotten so used to living at Rarity's that she feels more at home than at their parents.
You Have to Believe Me: Subverted in Dark World. Twilight and Applejack believe this trope will be in effect when they tell the other the crazy story of how they were redeemed (both of which involve supernatural visitation by a dead pony and one of which involved meeting the Pony equivalent of God), but not only do the stories make each other more believable due to the common elements, they remember they're in Discord's World of Chaos.
Applejack: …Why do neither of those sound half as weird as they should?
Twilight: In the world of chaos, it's pretty ho-hum.
Loneliness is defeated and Trixie is healed of both Discord's taint and her pre-existing mental problems... Then Discord is set free once again. Not to mention Princess Gaia. In an interesting twist, we've known ever since Loneliness' defeat that Discord will be released, but time has been turned back for the Princess Gaia arc.
While defending Cloudsdale from Princess Gaia's army, the Wonderbolts manage to take down a full grown dragon that seemed to be the biggest threat present... Then four more emerge from the clouds.
Dark World Discord dies from the wounds inflicted on him by Rancor, and the Elements of Harmony use a World-Healing Wave to restore Equestria. However, before his death Discord revealed that something had him trapped in a "Groundhog Day" Loop, and warned of an "Alicorn Witch" coming to destroy everything. And on top of that, there's the hints dropped for the Nameless Passenger's true motives... they're not done yet.
You Shall Not Pass: In the Epilogue timeline, Cadence pulls this on Discord and the corrupted Mane Six in order to give her remaining subjects a chance to escape.
Zerg Rush: Princess Gaia's army makes use of this tactic. They're endless to the point that no matter how many are beaten, they'll just keep coming until their targets are overwhelmed.
This is more or less the only tactic that General Admiral Makarov knows how to use. Mainly because he's a Reality Warper with unlimited resources and no moral compass at all.
Zero-Approval Gambit: Well far from zero approval, but Celestia apparently uses her alas Sunny Day to write unflattering tabloid articles about herself if it helps make everypony, or her sister's, life better. She wrote the "Celestia is a tyrant who banished poor Luna to the moon to secure power for herself" article to both make sure Luna wasn't written as a co-dictator by them and to give her an excuse to decentralize power that the conspiracy theorists would accept.
In the end, she writes an article painting herself as the Big Bad of the Princess Gaia/Nightmare Whisper incident so Fluttershy and Fluttercruel can move on without being hated for something they can never repeat. Since the tabloids have lied so much about her already, one more that helps Fluttershy won't hurt her as much as it'd hurt the mane cast if she DIDN'T do it.