Recap: MLP: Friendship Is Magic S4 E26 "Twilight's Kingdom - Part 2"
"Twilight, you represent the Element of Magic. If there's anypony who can do this, it's you."
— Princess Cadance
Special Guest Star: John de Lancie
Written by Meghan McCarthy
Picking up from the last episode, the alicorn princesses have resolved to surrender their magic before Tirek can steal it from them. Twilight is prepared to make the sacrifice, but Princess Luna explains that their magic cannot simply be erased. It must be transferred to Twilight herself, on the grounds that her element is magic and Tirek is unlikely to know there is a fourth princess. However, Twilight can't tell her friends or they would be put at risk. Despite this, Twilight agrees to go through with it. The transfer of power is felt by Discord, but he keeps this information from Tirek. Celestia, Luna, and Cadance lose their cutie marks in the process and collapse in a state of drained exhaustion.
Twilight returns to Ponyville under the secret burden of carrying the alicorn magic. To maintain the illusion of normalcy, she must lower the moon and raise the sun herself. But her overcharged powers keep escaping her control. When her friends catch up with her and offer to help, she refuses and tells them to keep the citizens of Ponyville inside until the crisis over. She then slips away into the Everfree Forest, seeking solitude in hopes of controlling her excess of power.
Meanwhile, Tirek and Discord raid the palace but find no alicorn magic to steal. Tirek must content himself with mocking the defenseless princesses before throwing them into Tartarus, leaving them to suffer as he did. An increasingly uneasy Discord reminds Tirek that they're ostensibly partners in this, which Tirek seemingly confirms by giving him a medallion that was given to him by someone close to him as a sign of gratitude and loyalty. He then notices the window mural of Twilight, realizing that there's a fourth princess. When he demands why Discord kept it secret, he replies that it was for insurance until he felt they were both on the same page, but now that he feels they are, he tells Tirek to look for her in Ponyville.
The Mane Five have secured the town, still unaware of the larger situation, when Discord appears and quickly imprisons them, much to Fluttershy's shock and dismay. Tirek drains the five of their magic and grows even bigger and stronger. When questioned if Twilight will do anything for her friends, Discord assures him she will. Tirek then turns on Discord and steals his magic. Bewildered by this turn of events, Discord protests that the medallion was supposed to seal their friendship. Tirek replies that the medallion was from his brother Scorpan, and that it was as worthless as him. The centaur leaves to find Twilight, leaving the despondent Discord behind.
Meanwhile, Twilight is busy trying to control her powers when Tirek finds her. She teleports to the library to get away from him, only for Tirek to destroy it, but not before she escapes with Owloiscious. Seeing no other option, she goes on the offensive, meeting Tirek blow for blow in a massive battle across the countryside. When both parties fail to gain an advantage, Tirek brings out his trump card: Twilight's imprisoned friends, and a remorseful Discord. Despite her friends telling her not to do it, Twilight agrees to trade her alicorn magic for their freedom. Tirek then lets them all go except Discord, to which Twilight reiterates all
her friends. Despite not understanding why Twilight still considers Discord a friend after betraying them, Tirek complies before absorbing Twilight's stored alicorn magic. After doing so, he grows to giant size, towering over all of the land, apparently unstoppable.
Discord apologizes to the Mane Six, saying that he only now understands the value of friendship. He gives Twilight the medallion as a genuine symbol of his loyalty and trust. The medallion shimmers with rainbow light, and the group realizes they have the final key. Once placed in the slot, the Mane Six unlock the chest. As the chest opens, a rainbow spreads up the tree into the Elements of Harmony. The six ponies are imbued with a new power — Rainbow Power — which changes their appearance and gives them a huge magical boost. With their Cutie Marks and magic restored, the six rise up in an orb of light to confront Tirek, who finds himself powerless against them. The group quickly blast him, sapping him of his power and permanently reimprisoning him in Tartarus. They then proceed to restore the stolen magic to its rightful owners, free the captured princesses, and repair the damage done to the land.
Once they've returned everything to normal, the Rainbow Power returns to the chest. The crystal box then flies to Ponyville, plants itself in the ground, and becomes the seed for a magical crystal castle/treehouse which grows in the location of the destroyed library. Twilight belatedly realizes that the castle is for her. It's then that Twilight grasps her duty as a princess: to spread the magic of friendship across Equestria. Thus Celestia dubs Twilight "The Princess of Friendship". As her first act, she proceeds to forgive Discord and welcomes him back — something a truly repentant Discord is happy with.
With that, all of Ponyville comes to see the new castle and celebrate with the Mane Six as they spread the Rainbow Power of friendship across the land.
- '80s Hair: The Mane Six all gain fabulous new 'dos after getting their Rainbow Power.
- Actually Pretty Funny: Tirek admits Discord's stained glass window of the two of them is quite amusing.
- Afraid of Their Own Strength: After realizing she has trouble controlling the combined power of all the Princesses' alicorn magic, Twilight tries to physically distance herself from her friends so she can practice in safety.
- All Your Colors Combined:
- When the Mane Six unlock the mysterious chest at the Tree of Harmony and gain access to the Rainbow Power form of the Elements of Harmony. The traditional six colors of the rainbow are replaced with the colors of the mares' fur.
- Additonally to the above, when post-empowerment Twilight fires magical blasts at Tirek, the blast is purple (the color of Twilight's magic), but also streaked with golden yellow, dark blue, and sky blue, the colors of the magical auras of Celestia, Luna, and Cadance respectively.
- All Your Powers Combined:
- Celestia, Luna, and Cadance transfer their magic energy into Twilight for safekeeping. This gives Twilight the power to control the sun and the moon, though not with the same level of skill.
- Tirek provides a villainous example. His goal is to absorb all the magic in Equestria, including from Earth ponies, unicorns, pegasi, and alicorns. He would supposedly gain the ability to control the environment as ponies do, but he's never seen using it except to enhance his own powers.
- Always Save the Girl: Twilight is willing to give hers and the other Princesses' powers to Tirek to save her friends. She even saves Discord, despite his betrayal.
- And Your Little Dog Too: Discord captured all of Twilight's closest friends "and her little dragon, too."
- Angrish: Tirek's dialogue during the fight with Twilight consists largely of enraged roaring and growling.
- Animation Bump: The battle between Twilight and Tirek.
- Answer Cut: When Tirek screams "Where is your magic?!?", immediately cut to Twilight blowing the door off her library, blowing a crater in the town square, and blowing past Rainbow Dash with a sonic boom.
- Armor-Piercing Question: Discord notably pauses and looks uncertain after Shining Armor is drained and asks him "How could you do this?"
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Once Tirek gains Twilight's power, he grows to giant size.
- Back for the Finale: We briefly see the other key givers — Coco, Spitfire with the Wonderbolts, Cheese Sandwich, Seabreeze, and Silver Shill.
- Barrier Warrior:
- Twilight uses magic barriers to absorb some otherwise devastating hits from Tirek, including being thrown into and tackled through a mountain.
- Tirek, likewise, uses a magical barrier to defend himself against Twilight's massive beam attack.
- Beam-O-War: The climax of Twilight and Tirek's battle. This results in a stalemate that forces Tirek to try a different tactic, since brute force isn't getting the job done.
- Berserk Button: Twilight tries to avoid Tirek when he first tracks her down... until he blows up the library. After that, she turns all her magic on him.
- Beware the Nice Ones:
- Twilight goes absolutely berserk when Tirek destroys her home, unloading on him with everything she's got.
- When you get down to it, Tirek's final fate is to get blasted to hell.
- Bigger on the Inside: The Round Table-like throne room in Twilight's new crystal tree-castle, and the corridor leading up to it, seem to be much too big to fit into the castle's exterior.
- Break the Haughty: Discord is subjected to this at Tirek's hands, finally solidifying his Heel-Face Turn.
- Brought Down to Normal:
- Celestia, Luna and Cadance when they transfer all their magic to Twilight.
- Discord goes through this when Tirek drains him of his magic.
- This also happens to Twilight when she surrenders hers and the Princesses' power to Tirek.
- Call Back:
- The mysterious chest from the Tree of Harmony introduced in "Princess Twilight Sparkle - Part 2" once again plays a part, this time having Twilight focusing all her efforts on opening it in the hopes of saving Equestria.
- Two of the stained glass windows in Celestia's hall are predominate plot points.
- The window introduced in "The Return of Harmony - Part 1", with Discord manipulating ponies before his initial imprisonment, is played with by Discord here, actually animating the glass version of himself toying with ponies. He also replaced the generic unicorn, pegasus, and earth ponies in the glass with Celestia, Luna, and Cadance.
- The new Princess Twilight window introduced in "Princess Twilight Sparkle - Part 1" also proves to be a flaw in the plan, as it reveals the existence of the fourth alicorn to Tirek. Tirek liquefies it with his magic as he departs to hunt Twilight down.
- The Cameo: The rainbow that flies through Equestria in the finale is seen by everyone who gave the Mane Six their keys — Coco Pommel, Spitfire and the Wonderbolts, Cheese Sandwich, Seabreeze, Silver Shill, and Discord last of all.
- Chekhov's Gun: The medallion Tirek gives to Discord as a sign of "trust" turns out to be Twilight's key, which Discord gives her after she shows she still considers him a friend after his betrayal.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Averted, bordering on subverted for some viewers. Scorpan helped defeat Tirek in the first place, so one would expect Celestia to send Twilight to... Not look for him. Or even mention asking him for help at all. Odd.
- Chekhov's Skill: Celestia's reason for sending Discord after Tirek was that he could sense the magical disruption caused by Tirek's Mana Drain. When the Princesses transfer their magic to Twilight, Discord is able to sense it, but doesn't tell Tirek. And once Tirek drains Discord of magic, he can pinpoint Twilight's location without trouble.
- Circle of Friendship: The Mane Six open the box produced by the Tree of Harmony, giving them Rainbow Power. Opening the box is done by standing in a circle around it and turning all six keys at once, giving it this effect. They then follow this up with a new Friendship powered Wave Motion Gun to defeat Tirek and seal him back in Tartarus. The ending implies their upgrade comes with the ability to do this at will.
- Continuity Nod:
- Everyone who gave the keys to the Mane Six over the season are shown as the rainbow flies through Equestria.
- This is the second time this season we've seen Shining Armor in uniform, and the first time since "A Canterlot Wedding" that he's been shown performing his duties as Captain of the Royal Guard.
- Cerberus' escape from Tararus in "It's About Time" is directly mentioned, and cited as the most likely reason Tirek was able to escape.
- Converging Stream Weapon: The Mane Six's new friendship powered Wave Motion Gun manifests this way, blasting Tirek with six individual beams of light before they combine into one powerful blow that defeats him, takes back the stolen magic, locks him back in Tartarus, and releases Celestia, Luna, and Cadance from Tartarus when their own magic is restored.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Twilight and Tirek's first fight is evenly matched, but once the Mane Six get their hooves on the Rainbow Power, a few beams of magic is all it takes to shrivel and seal up Tirek once and for all and get Celestia, Luna, and Cadance back from Tartarus.
- Despair Event Horizon: Discord after Tirek double-crosses him. While trapped in their bubbles, the Mane Five are frantic and begging Twilight to not surrender her magic for them. Discord, however, sits still, silent and slumped over, likely reeling with regret and seeming to have just given up. Traitor or not, the poor guy looks broken.
- Devour the Dragon: Lord Tirek convinces Discord to pull a Face-Heel Turn, then turns on him and steals his magic when he's done with him.
- Did Not See That Coming: Done heartbreakingly so when Discord turns against the other ponies and captures the Mane Six (save for Twilight). Discord mentions that they should have seen it coming, only for a heartbroken Fluttershy to admit she hadn't at all — she was so convinced her friendship with him was ironclad, she never thought he'd turn his back on her. This turns into an Ironic Echo when Discord himself is betrayed by Lord Tirek and Applejack tells him the same exact thing.
- Didn't Think This Through: Celestia's plan in this two-parter fails at every step. Send Discord to capture Tirek? They become allies. Transfer all the alicorn magic to Twilight? She trades it for hostages. Prevent Tirek from knowing about Twilight? He just has to look at the stained glass window and ask Discord about it. Tell Twilight not to let her friends in on the plan for their own protection? They immediately suspect that something's wrong, and get captured by Discord soon afterward. The only way Twilight was able to win was by unlocking the Harmony Box, and it was Discord, not Celestia, who told her how to open it.
- Diving Save: Twilight manages to do this with Owlowiscious, just barely managing to get themselves clear of the library before Tirek blows it up.
- Double Aesop: Discord learns that friendship truly is magic, and Twilight learns that friendship is more important than the combined magic of all the alicorn princesses.
- Double Take: Tirek has a delayed reaction on passing before the window mural showing Twilight rising as an alicorn, stopping in mid-evil gloating.
- Dragged Off to Hell: This happens twice:
- First, to the princesses Celestia, Luna and Cadance, who are forced into Tartarus by Tirek after having transferred their powers to Twilight Sparkle.
- Near the end, the Mane Six use their newly earned Super Modes to free the princesses and put Tirek there in their place. It is worth noting that unlike the princesses, who were sent through a portal, and unlike the first time Tirek was imprisoned when he was sent through the gate, second time around Tirek is blasted to hell.
- Dull Eyes of Unhappiness:
- Very briefly, but after Tirek drains Twilight, the color in her eyes go to dull grey. Once Discord gives her the medallion and it's revealed to be the final key needed to open the box, her eyes and those of her friends are returned to normal.
- Also happens to the rest of the Mane Mares and Discord when Tirek drains their magic. When they're locked in the cage, Spike is the only one whose eyes are normal.
- It happens to Celestia, Luna, and Cadance, as well. If one watches closely as the Princesses are released and their magic is restored, their eyes are duller in color than when we saw them get sent to Tartarus, indicating they sensed when their magic became Tirek's, and lost hope. When their magic is returned, their eyes return to normal.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: Even more so than previous seasons. Tirek has left most of Equestria powerless and defeated, sent three of its Princesses to Tartarus, and has more or less become a Physical God. Even Discord is left broken and powerless after betraying Equestria to the tyrannical centaur before being betrayed himself. The mane six think all is lost... then get the last Rainbow Key, allowing them to unlock their Rainbow Power forms, defeat Tirek, and restore Equestria, with Twilight finally finding her place as Princess of Friendship. Not to mention that unlocking the Rainbow Power was the culmination of all the Mane Six's hard work, in a subplot that spanned across the entire fourth season. Earned, indeed.
- Easily Forgiven: Even after he sided with Tirek, Twilight still considered Discord a friend, much to his surprise. This trope also applies to Fluttershy, who Discord is still on good terms with despite hurting her earlier with his betrayal. That said, he does notice he doesn't get a throne along with the others and is told he'll have to earn it, and seemed to regret what he did even before Tirek stabbed him in the back.
- Eleventh Hour Superpower: "Rainbow Power", the force that was locked inside the box, is unlocked after Twilight turns over all the alicorn magic she had been storing and proves to be the key to defeating Tirek. However the key to unlock the box is generated from Discord's artifact he received from Tirek and he's only released after the exchange to turn over the magic to Tirek occurs, meaning Tirek had literally won by the time the Rainbow Power box is unlocked (so it's really more of a "Twelfth Hour Superpower").
- Et Tu, Brute?:
- Fluttershy is the only of the Mane Six who seems wholly shocked by Discord's betrayal.
- Before her, Shining Armor is likewise stunned that Discord would turn his back on them.
- Discord gets hit with this moments later by Tirek, who he seemed to have thought was actually his friend. It causes Discord to, for the first time in the series, be broken.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Tirek cannot understand friendship, and is confused when Twilight demands Discord's release after he betrayed them. It is this mistake that leads to his defeat and re-imprisonment for eternity.
- Eviler Than Thou: Tirek proves worse than Discord, playing the chaos spirit like a fiddle and stealing his magic when Discord is no longer useful.
- Evil Is Not a Toy: As Discord of all people finds out.
- Eyedscreen: Tirek gets this when he tells Discord You Have Outlived Your Usefulness.
- False Friend: Tirek plays this role to Discord.
- Floating in a Bubble: When bargaining with Twilight for all the alicorn magic in Equestria, Tirek holds her friends — including Spike and Discord — suspended in individual bubbles.
- Back from "Three's a Crowd", Discord, in full-on jester mode, gives Twilight a friendship medallion of little value. Here, Discord gives Twilight the medallion he got from Tirek, assuring her he fully means his friendship this time.
- Before being sent to Tartarus with Luna and Cadence, Celestia weakly tells Tirek that he would not prevail. Her prediction would later come true when Twilight and her friends unlock their rainbow powers from the chest and send him back to Tartarus while, unknowingly, getting the Princesses back in the process.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: The cucumber sandwiches Discord offers Fluttershy are cut into the shape of butterflies, or Fluttershy's cutie mark, which makes it even more insulting when he drops them on the ground in front of her.
- Friendship Makes You Dumb: After experiencing Fluttershy's friendship, Discord is so eager to have Tirek for a friend that he becomes Genre Blind to the possibility that Tirek would double-cross him.
- Good Is Not Nice: While Tirek's ultimate motivation was to drain Twilight of her magic, Twilight is very clearly doing everything in her power to kill Tirek throughout their fight.
- Ground-Shattering Landing: Even Twilight's flight capabilities have been amped up by the power transfer, creating a crater on takeoff and a small ditch in the ground as she skids to a stop.
- Heart Is an Awesome Power: The Elements of Harmony, in their Rainbow Power form, are more powerful than the magic Tirek absorbed from countless ponies across Equestria, including that of the four alicorn Princesses and the personification of Chaos. See the quote under Pre-Asskicking One-Liner below.
- Heel-Face Revolving Door: Within the space of the two episodes, Discord goes from Reformed, but Rejected to Demoted to Dragon to Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves, finally landing on Welcome Back, Traitor at the end.
- Hell Is That Noise: Tirek draining Discord is accompanied by a distorted, possibly reversed version of his normal drain sound effect.
- Hostage for MacGuffin: When it becomes apparent their powers are at a deadlock, Tirek resorts to this to get Twilight to surrender her and the Princesses' powers.
- How Do I Shot Web?: Twilight has to raise the sun and lower the moon now that she has Celestia's and Luna's magic. It's a bit shakey, but she manages.
- How Much More Can He Take: During the battle between Twilight and Tirek, the two are evenly matched.
- Hypocrite: Despite continually showing bitterness and hate for his brother Scorpan betraying him to save Equestria, Tirek has no qualms about stabbing Discord in the back for power.
- I Can Rule Alone: Lord Tirek, convinces a post-Heel-Face Turn Discord to join his side and help him conquer Equestria. However, Tirek pulls this trope the moment Discord is no longer of use to him, draining him of his magic. In a bit of irony, Discord's Heel Realization as a result is what solidifies his true Heel-Face Turn.
- I Lied: Tirek, surprising exactly nopony except Discord.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog: Twilight, who is trying to control her new powers gained from the other three princesses, says "Gotta go... somewhere... else." to avoid talking to Spike.
- Ironic Echo:
- Irony: It's Discord, of all creatures, that hands Twilight the final key to help her open the box.
- It's All Junk: Tirek claims that both his medallion and his own brother, who had originally given the medallion to him, are worthless. He uses this to explain that giving the medallion to Discord as a symbol of gratitude was an empty gesture.
- It's Personal: While Tirek did plenty of evil, horrific things throughout his time as Big Bad, destroying Twilight's home makes her go berserk and attack him with everything she has. She doesn't seem to feel any remorse about sending him back to Tartarus either.
- Laser-Guided Karma:
- Discord stabs Equestria, and Fluttershy, in the back siding with Tirek. Tirek, after convincing Discord he was an ally and a friend, stabs him in the back. This seems to cause Discord to have a true Heel Realization.
- Likewise, Tirek going back on his word to share Equestria with Discord. The medallion was meant to be a sign of trust between Discord and him. When he doesn't uphold the symbolism of such, it shows Discord the error of his ways and gives Twilight the very thing needed to beat him.
- Let's Get Dangerous: Once Tirek destroys the library, all bets are off and Twilight goes full throttle on him with her power.
- Memento MacGuffin: The medallion that Tirek received from Scorpan before his imprisonment proves to be the final key for the chest at the Tree of Harmony.
- Mood Whiplash: A Mood Rollercoaster — between scenes of Tirek conquering Canterlot, then heading to Ponyville to drain Twilight's friends of their magic and invoking You Have Outlived Your Usefulness on Discord, we're treated to mostly comical scenes of Twilight trying to get her new powers under control and botching her spells.
- Moral Myopia: Tirek still shows signs of being bitter with his brother for betraying him, despite the fact Scorpan had already tried reasoning with Tirek to stop him, but has zero problem stabbing Discord in the back for his own selfish hunger for power.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Discord is obviously having second thoughts during his team up with Tirek. But this trope doesn't hit him completely until Tirek, unsurprisingly, betrays him and takes his power, just like he did to Fluttershy.
- My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Discord visibly wobbles when he senses the imbalance caused by Cadance, Luna, and Celestia transferring their powers to Twilight, but tells no one.
Discord: That can't be right.
Tirek: What can't be right?
Discord: Nothing. Carry on!
- Near Villain Victory: Tirek claiming Discord's magic all the magic Twilight had been carrying with her means he had technically won. There wasn't a creature alive in Equestria with enough magic to constrain him at that point. So the team has to tap into an Eleventh Hour Superpower to break through.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
- Celestia's tradition of showing off the heroes of Equestria (notably, Princess Twilight's ascension) in the stained glass windows of the royal halls comes back to ruin her plan to keep knowledge of Twilight secret from Tirek. He probably would have found out anyway, but still....
- Discord puts his own spin on most of the windows in the palace, but forgets to do that specific one, or at least hadn't gotten to it by the time Tirek noticed.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: If Tirek had stuck to his word to Discord, he wouldn't have given the Mane Six the final key needed to beat him. Of course Tirek had no way of knowing it'd backfire at the time and undo his Near Villain Victory.
- Nigh-Invulnerability: During their battle, Twilight throws Tirek into the ground so hard he's buried under several feet of rubble. In the same fight he rams her straight through a mountain. Neither shows any sign of injury afterward.
- No Sell:
- Until she voluntarily surrenders it, Tirek is unable to drain Twilight of the combined power of the Princesses' alicorn magic. Though likewise Tirek shrugs off everything Twilight throw at him.
- Tirek's magic does absolutely nothing to the rainbow-powered Mane Six.
- Nothing Is the Same Anymore: The Mane Six gain Rainbow Power, and with it, new powers to explore. The library is destroyed, but in its place is a new castle effectively making Ponyville into a kingdom and Twilight is dubbed "Princess of Friendship".
- Discord's character also crossed whatever the polar opposite of the Moral Event Horizon is. He fully accepts the Mane Six are now his friends and can be truly considered reformed now.
- Off Model: When the Mane Six spread their World-Healing Wave over Equestria, the Crystal Empire doesn't appear on the map as it did in "Pinkie Pride". Come to think of it, we don't see Tirek draining any crystal ponies, so the question of whether crystal ponies are a subset of earth ponies or a different race is still ambiguous.
- Oh, Crap:
- Twilight when she flies right at the hoof of Tirek while trying to get away from him. Even moreso when she teleports back to the library, thinking she's a good distance away and watch Tirek through a telescope only for him to turn in her direction and send a fireball her way.
- Tirek likewise has one when his powers prove ineffective against the Rainbow Power and realizes his victory is about to be short-lived, leading to his own Villainous Breakdown.
- One-Winged Angel: After absorbing enough magic to regain all his power, Tirek transforms into a gargantuan, monstrous, kaiju-esque version of himself.
- OOC Is Serious Business: When Discord starts acting solemn and serious, you know this time he truly is sorry for what he's done.
- Out-of-Genre Experience: The fight between Twilight and Tirek looks like something out of a Shōnen anime. This is especially noticeable with the climax of the episode, which is more in line with previous finales.
- Power Glows:
- Twilight sparks with electricity occasionally as a result of being supercharged by the other Princesses.
- When Twilight first receives the combined power, as well as when she tries to lower the moon and raise the sun, her body glows and her hair turns more ethereal, with a glow about her.
- The Rainbow Power is very glowy indeed, which wears off once it's done its job.
- Power Incontinence: Twilight has trouble performing even the most basic magic after the power transfer, blowing up the door to the Golden Oaks Library simply by trying to open it and briefly teleporting to random spots all across Equestria. It isn't until Tirek comes after her that she gets a handle on her power, if only because she's no longer trying to hold it back.
- Power Makes Your Mane Grow:
- When the Mane Six gain their new elements, it has this effect.
- Tirek gets a long white mane in his penultimate transformation.
- Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: Combined with Shut Up, Hannibal! before the mane six curbstomp Tirek with their newly acquired Rainbow Power:
- Red Sky, Take Warning: From the moment the Library Tree is destroyed and during the whole Twilight vs. Tirek showdown, the previously blue sky turns red and dark.
- Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: Discord betrays the ponies to aid Tirek after he offered him freedom. In the end, Discord is betrayed by Tirek and his magic is drained, leaving him to dwell on what he had done.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Once Tirek blows up the Library, Twilight stops trying to hold her magic back and instead goes all out in trying to stop him.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: After the Mane Six harness the Rainbow Power version of the Elements of Harmony, Twilight earns the title of "Princess of Friendship", with the role of spreading the Magic of Friendship across Equestria.
- Sean Connery Is About to Shoot You: When Twilight sees Tirek through a telescope, it looks like he's about to blast the audience with fiery magic.
- Sequel Hook: Considering season five was announced, plenty. Such as the whereabouts of Scorpan in all of this, what new powers the rainbow elements entail and how Ponyville will now function as a kingdom, not to mention how Discord's completed reform will be displayed.
- Ship Tease:
- Near the end, Discord gives Celestia a bouquet of flowers and winks at her. It does seem like a possible acknowledgement of the fan idea that the two of them had a thing once.
- The Discord/Fluttershy tease is still going strong — Discord softly apologizes to her, and she forgives him. And then there's this little exchange:
(to Twilight, on her Heroic Sacrifice
) We're not worth it! Discord:
Oh, but you
are, Fluttershy. You're the pony who taught me that Friendship is Magic
. I had magic and
friendship, and now, I don't have either.
- If you look closely at the captured Mane 5 after Discord is drained, you can see Spike holding Rarity.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Pinkie Pie is quite possibly the member of the Mane Six with the fewest speaking parts throughout the whole two-parter, presumably to keep the mood serious.
- A brief one, but Twilight Sparkle letting Owlowiscious go is similar to Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 1.
- When Discord and Tirek capture the Mane 5 and Spike, Discord notes that he got her little dragon too.
- The final battle against Tirek is obviously gleaning from Dragon Ball Z. Which also makes it an Out-of-Genre Experience.
- Just before the big fight, Twilight's takeoff from the ground is similar to Superman taking off in Man of Steel, including with the rocks shaking moments before she blasts off.
- Another shout out to Superman's comics and movies is how a crystal piece (in this case a chest) buries itself on the ground and makes a large, fully formed crystal building to emerge.
- Twilight getting stuck in a rock crevice is one to One Piece as Luffy has a bad habit of this happening during fights with a Big Bad. Unlike Luffy though, Twilight can just teleport out.
- The throne room in Twilight's castle has a low dais reminiscent of the Round Table at its center, surrounded by thrones for the Mane Six and Spike.
- Spike's smaller, less ornamented (i.e., no cutie mark) throne next to Twilight's is a bit like the throne of the Steward of Gondor.
- When using his power, Tirek manifests a fireball, hovering between his curved horns. This makes him resemble Hellboy, who would manifest a fiery crown hovering between his curved horns◊ on the occasions that he tapped into his full power as the Prince of Hell.
- It's also been pointed out by fans that the fireball looks similar to the gem between Nicol Bolas' horns◊ from Magic: The Gathering.
- It also somewhat resembles the Eye of Sauron from the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
- The Mane Six's Rainbow Power is similar to the "Sailor Planet Attack" in Sailor Moon, even replicating the overhead shot as the ponies power up.
- Slouch of Villainy: When Tirek is seated on Celestia's throne, his posture has a decidedly unroyal air.
- Spared by the Adaptation: In the original Rescue at Midnight Castle, Tirek is destroyed. Here he's depowered and reimprisoned in Tartarus.
- Sphere of Destruction: Happens when Twilight & Tirek's energy beams collide at the climax of their battle. The resulting blast leaves both of them picking themselves up out of piles of rubble when the dust clears.
- Sphere of Power: The Mane Six imbued with the Rainbow Power are surrounded by a bright, multicolored sphere that Lift them in the air and is completely imprevious to Tirek's attack. Then, after defeating the villain, it expands into a World-Healing Wave.
- Stealth Pun:
- When electricity crackles around Twilight, you might say that Twilight is sparkling.
- Rainbow Powered!Applejack has red cheeks as if blushing. You could say she's "apple-cheeked".
- Tirek is sent back to Tartarus by a Wave Motion Gun, you could say he was literally blasted to Hell.
- Stepford Smiler: When Twilight tries to reassure Spike that everything's fine, she forces a big, insincere grin to her face.
- Super Mode: The ponies' Rainbow Power seems to function like this. Once the danger has passed, the Mane Six revert back to their normal forms.
- Sympathy for the Devil: The Mane Five are clearly horrified when Tirek betrays Discord and violently sucks his magic dry. Note that this is after Discord betrayed them; there's not even an ounce of biting sarcasm in Applejack's voice when she returns an Ironic Echo over his backstab.
- Talking Is a Free Action: After Twilight surrenders her alicorn magic to Tirek, Tirek immediately grows to monstrous proportions and should be able to easily squash the heroes... yet Discord has plenty of time to explain his sincerity in giving the medallion to Twilight as a sign of their friendship.
- Teleportation Misfire: When trying to get the hang of her boosted powers, Twilight's attempt at teleportation sends her to random spots all across Equestria.
- Teleporter Accident: Averted, but it comes close. Twilight's Power Incontinence teleports her all over Equestria, and despite the distances involved, she only ends up stuck between two rocks on the last jump. (This is also the first time she uses the word "teleportation" to refer to this ability.)
- Teleport Spam: Twilight makes good use of this during her fight with Tirek. Every time he manages to pin her down, she just teleports out.
- Tempting Fate: Tirek cites the medallion as useless since it reminds him of Scorpan and his siding with the ponies. Take a wild guess what ends up being the final key to unlock the box and seal his defeat.
- Theme Music Power-Up: The Mane Six transforming into their Rainbow Power forms is accompanied by track that sounds like a remix of the theme song.
- This Cannot Be!: Tirek shouts this when he see Twilight and the Mane Six with their new Rainbow Power, unable to understand how they are empowered again after draining their magic.
- Title Drop: By Discord once again: He notes that Fluttershy actually taught him that friendship is magic.
- Tranquil Fury: In contrast to Tirek's Angrish, Twilight is completely silent during their battle.
- Transformation Sequence: The Mane Six assuming their Rainbow Power forms is accompanied by this.
- Trash the Set: Golden Oaks Library is blown up.
- Unmoving Plaid: When Tirek drains Discord's magic, the bolt has this appearance. Of course, since it is pure chaos, it does fit thematically.
- Unskilled, but Strong:
- Twilight has a lot of difficulty controlling the magic of four alicorns in her body, and even her simple teleport spell she uses all the time messes up. All she can do in her battle with Tirek is blast him with beams of magic; but again, with the power of four alicorns in her, it works well.
- The same with Tirek. Despite having Discord's magic, he uses none of his finesse, just throwing out energy blasts and the occasional physical attack.
- The Usurper: After he finds out that Celestia, Luna, and Cadance have hidden their magic from him, we see Tirek sitting on Celestia's throne. He then sends the Princesses to Tartarus to ensure that nopony can challenge his claim to the throne. Having drained Shining Armor as well, and Shining Armor being a Prince, Tirek thought he had removed the Royal Family completely from power. He assumes his claim as the new King of Equestria is secured for good once he drains Twilight of the Princesses' magic, but his claim is short-lived once he is hit with Rainbow Power, re-imprisoned in Tartarus, and Celestia, Luna, Cadance, Shining Armor, and Twilight, are restored to their places as Equestria's true Royal Family and sovereigns.
- Villainous Breakdown: Tirek is shocked that Twilight and her friends have magic again and finds himself completely overpowered by them.
- Villain Team-Up: Tirek convinces Discord to team up with him to take over Equestria. Of course, their alliance doesn't last.
- Wave Motion Gun:
- Twilight's first volley against Tirek is a massive energy beam which completely envelops him, then explodes in the background into a giant mushroom cloud.
- After being empowered with the Rainbow Power, the Mane Six fire one of these at Tirek, returning him to his weak and frail state and blasting him back to Tartarus forever.
- Welcome Back, Traitor:
- Discord betrays all of ponykind to the most titanically dangerous threat it has ever faced... and yet Twilight rescues him with the rest of her friends.
- Towards the end when the Mane Six are having a Group Hug and Discord is nervously waving from off to the side, Twilight uses her magic to pull him into the group, making this trope literal.
- We Used to Be Friends: Seeing the ponies (especially Fluttershy) absolutely broken by Discord's betrayal really punches him in the gut... but he's sided with Tirek, so there's no turning back now... or so it seems.
- Wham Episode: Let us count the ways: Twilight's library is destroyed; she faces the Big Bad in a battle of Dragon Ball Z proportions; Discord's Heel-Face Turn is permanent; the Mane Six are bestowed with new Elements of Harmony in the form of Rainbow Power; Twilight is dubbed Princess of Friendship; and Twilight is given a brand new castle of her very own, with thrones for herself and all her friends (including Spike).
- Wham Line:
Discord: Soon, there won't be a pegasus, earth pony, or unicorn who will be able to stand up against us.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Tirek's brother is mentioned a number of times, and depictions of him are shown in a storybook, but never makes an actual appearance. Unless Tartarus gives Tirek enhanced longevity, his brother should still be around. Though considering he went back to wherever he came from and there is no easy means of long-distance communication except between Spike and Celestia, they might just not have been able to find him.
- Widely Spaced Jail Bars: The cage that Discord materializes to imprison Twilight's friends clearly has bars leaving a space wide enough for a pony to slip through.
- The Worf Barrage: In a curious example of both sides of a fight using this, neither Twilight nor Tirek are able to do any damage to each other during their huge, epic battle scene.
- World-Healing Wave: After Tirek's defeat, the Mane Six release a rainbow wave which restores the magic of all the drained ponies, including restoring the Princesses' magic and releasing them from Tartarus.
- Would Hit a Mare: Tirek has no problem with physically manhandling Celestia as well as Twilight whom he throws into a mountain followed by tackling her THROUGH it. When offering Twilight's friends in exchange for the alicorns' magic, the clearly implied bargain is the magic for their lives.
- Would Hurt a Child: Tirek has no problem holding Spike hostage, with the implication he'd be completely willing to kill the little dragon along with Twilight's other friends if it gets him what he wants. Of course, given his G1 counterpart threatened to decapitate Spike, this should come as no surprise.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Done by Tirek to Discord. Tirek doesn't kill Discord, but he does drain him of all his magic and power and all but quotes this trope.