Web Video: My Little Pony: The Mentally Advanced Series
My Little Ponies! My Little Ponies! Aaa-aaa-aaa—okay, let's skip this part. It is not my favorite. Hehehehe!The Mentally Advanced Series is an Abridged Series of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic that is written, voiced, and produced by Greg Hoffman, a.k.a. FiMFlamFilosophy. Later episodes start featuring additional people doing voices and occasionally helping Greg with editing. The series has a more adult sense of humor than the original show — which in this case does not mean it contains cluster F bombs or lots of sex jokes; rather that one needs to have attained a fairly high level of education to understand its many Genius Bonus jokes. It is a darker twist on the original's characters and concepts (some of which comes from the brony community's fanon) and features lampshading, references to HP Lovecraft, copious amounts of satire, and lots of dialogue that is written quite a bit above grade-school level. Much of the humor is very dry and derives from how the characters speak to each other. In fact, this is probably the "talkiest" Abridged Series in existence.In contrast to most of the other Friendship Is Magic parodies out there, this one skips the 2-part pilot completely and just starts with the third episode ("The Ticket Master"), which means every episode number mentioned below is the same as the original series number minus 2.In addition, Greg teamed up with Ryan "Petirep" Petrie to make the spinoff Rainbow Dash Presents, which features re-imaginings of popular Friendship Is Magic fanfiction as narrated by Mentally Advanced's Rainbow Dash. Well, narrated up to the point that she even read the story; a better descriptor would be that she skimmed it over breakfast and then decided to fill in the blanks with whatever was on her mind that day.Mentally Advanced has a history of running into trouble with copyright enforcement. That Greg's Youtube account is monetized (unlike most other Abridgers') makes the trouble much worse and fixing it much harder. The series was blocked in the United States in late 2012 after getting caught up in "ContentID", Youtube's automated program that flags popular videos perceived to be copyright violations. Greg appealed to get the block removed but Youtube rejected his claim. He then started "Dawn Somewhere", his personal LLC, and attempted to move the series to Blip (due to its traditionally being more accepting of fair use claims), but Blip deleted his account after only a week, taking even his 100%-original-content videos with it. At that point, the series was declared to be "on life support", and Greg decided to concentrate his energy on Rainbow Dash Presents and Dawn Somewhere's other shows.In May 2014, after 18 months of no new content (though Rainbow Dash Presents still updated), he suddenly started posting new episodes every two weeks; these episodes used still screenshots in order to speed up editing and get around copyright. Unfortunately, in October 2014, one day before his highly-anticipated parody of "Party Of One" was set to post, the series was hit by ContentID claims again, and Greg took down the episodes in order to salvage the rest of Dawn Somewhere's content. He gave his fans a few days' warning before he did so, so every episode of the series has been archived somewhere. In April 2015, he released the "Party Of One" parody at BABSCon and encouraged attendees to film it and spread it around.Greg has vowed to continue Mentally Advanced, and that (due to Petirep being too busy) he is learning to draw and use Flash in order to create new episodes that can't be auto-flagged. The first "experiment" in the new style is here. Fittingly, it's a prequel episode. As of mid-2015, he releases about one new episode a month, along with the occasional short, starting from "Ticket Master" again. Despite retreading the same episodes, the scripts are completely different.They've also announced that Rainbow Dash Presents: Bittersweet will be the last RDP due to other commitments, but they planned a Grand Finale collaboration called "Equestria Primates", a parody of Equestria Girls. Sadly, after months of work, that project officially became vaporware when Greg and Petirep realized (1) it was taking way too long and there was no way in hell they'd finish it by the deadline, especially not with Petirep trying to go pro, and (2) it wasn't funny enough to justify all the work. There was also a second Spin-Off called Dinky Vlogs, an in-character vlog from Dinky Hooves, though it ceased updating in 2014 due to Petirep not having time to do it.The series can still be found on the team's website here.
This work provides examples of:
- AcCENT Upon the Wrong SylLABle: Scootaloo in Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla.Scootaloo: What if we opt out of taking the test?
- Also in the "Rainbow Fun Factory" song. Rainbow sticks to 8-syllable meter and doesn't care about sounding stilted.
- Accidental Misnaming: Twilight almost never gets Fluttershy's name right, even though she keeps claiming that she knows it.
- Adaptation Expansion: The "Beautiful Day" episode of Rainbow Dash Presents shows the canon ending to the fic. Twilight finds a gorilla night club in the middle of the Everfree Forest.
- A Date with Rosie Palms: Rarity implies that Applejack will do this as a result of hearing how much her Big Brother gets around in Rainbow Dash Presents: The Haunting Nightmare.
- Adorably Precocious Child: Aurora in Investment Losses and Enunciation Emergency, in the former she tries to convince her mother to buy a cereal using salesman jargon and in the latter she sings about things such as politics and economics.
- Adorkable: Rainbow Dash in the spinoff Rainbow Dash Presents.
- Aurora as well.
- Ambiguously Bi: It is implied that Big Mac has had sex with Rarity, and in "Spiderses" he proposed having sex with Twilight. However he also mentioned he missed Caramel which leads us to...
- Ambiguously Gay: Big Mac is implied to be "a certain colt-cuddling stallion" and in Rainbow Dash Presents: Spiderses, he wishes he could go back to Caramel. However, he initiates sex with Twilight within the same episode.
- This is also frequently played with Rainbow Dash.
- Amplified Animal Aptitude: In Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, Dazzler's cat is a doctor."How do you think he pays ze RENT?!"
- Anything That Moves: Scootaloo will happily hit on anyone, regardless of gender or age.
- Attention Whore: Rainbow Dash
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Celestia's long list of atrocities include genocide, earth salting, torture, and Ass Shoves.
- Art Evolution: Rainbow Dash Presents went all the way from simple slideshow to limited animation, still done entirely by one guy (Petirep).
- Greg himself after taking the series completely in-house. He had to learn to draw, make Flash puppets, and learn rudimentary animation all in less than six months. His progress from Episode 0 to Episode -6 is impressive.
- Artistic License – Biology: The authors in the commentary for Bittersweet note that a diabetic trying to suicide by sugar would be in for a horrific, painful, and protracted death.
- Too bad they are completely wrong though – consuming a ton of sugar would not lead to DKA; it was her stopping the insulin that killed her, which would have been just as quickly fatal without the sugar binge. What's more, Pinkie is strongly implied to be Type 2, who only very rarely develop DKA at all.
- Aside Glance: Rainbow Dash addresses the camera mid-story in Haunting Nightmare.Rainbow Dash: (after a bunch of tentacles pop out of the toilet) Okay, now see, if I could pee standing up, this wouldn't be a problem.
- Author Appeal: The reason for all the Gorillas? They make Greg happy.
- The reason for the Applebloom cameos at the end of each RDP episode? She's Petirep's favorite pony.
- Author Tract: Greg is prone to these, This trait is mostly carried over to Rainbow Dash. Occasionally Twilight.
- Greg's "Let's Ramble" videos usually begins with these.
- Ax-Crazy: Pinkie Pie
- Badass Baritone: Thrackerzod and Smarty Pants.
- Bigger Is Better in Bed: They don't call him Big Mac for nothing.
- Bilingual Bonus: Snips and Snails. They mostly talk about food (Snips reads lines from a German recipe for Wienerschnitzel, while Snails takes quotes from a Swedish recipe for Janssons Frestelse), but occasionally they'll say stuff that is downright hilarious (not matching the subtitles at all).
- Lampshaded when Spike wonders why he always feels hungry after talking to them.
- Black Speech: The language that Thrackerzod and Smarty Pants speak to each other in until Zecora shows up.
- Happens again in Episode 15, where the Entity speaks in this manner to Thrackerzod, though Thrackerzod herself speaks normally. It's subtitled, but backmasking proves that the two don't quite match.
- Blessed with Suck: Fluttershy gets mind-reading powers because of a curse. All the other ponies think it's cool, but she finds others' thoughts disturbing.
- Breather Episode: Episode 22, the penultimate episode produced using the "screencap" style, is a lot more mellow then the others, just being a conversation between Twilight and Spike.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Tends to happen a lot in Rainbow Dash Presents. Perhaps due to the narrator.
- Brick Joke: Plenty.
- In episode 6, Rarity gets Applejack to say she slept with her cousin Braeburn, and in episode 19 she asks him "Are you the one AJ slept with?"
- Episode 9 involves a botched Chain of Deals (see below) that ends with Twilight giving Pinkie Pie a hairbrush. In episode 23, Pinkie attempts to entice Twilight to go to one of her parties by telling Twilight she has a hairbrush for to brush her hair. Yes.
- In episode 7, Spike tells Twilight that Celestia's agents asked him if Twilight was working for Mothra (he said yes). During Pinkie's interrogation in episode 23† , Spike tells Pinkie that Mothra provided funding to the bucket of turnips to spread negative propaganda about Pinkie's parties.
- Fluttershy runs afoul of Celestia at the end of Episode 20 and Celestia punishes her. Sure enough, the next three episodes (all of which Fluttershy canonically appears in) are creatively edited to get rid of her. After that, the series switches to hand-drawn pictures and starts over from the beginning… and despite the Reset Button, Fluttershy is still gone. She doesn't even get mentioned until Episode -5.
- British Accents: Celestia speaks with a thick, gruff cockney accent. Spike is from Scotireland.
- Buffy Speak: Rainbow Dash herself in Rainbow Dash Presents: Cupcakes.Rainbow Dash: "You put too much dizzy stuff in the cupcakes."
- Butt Monkey: Fluttershy.
- Every character (except Pinkie) gets it to an extent. Mostly Twilight.
- Aurora in Rainbow Dash Presents. She has Pony AIDS and her wing keeps snapping off. Physics and biology quit being consistent just so that she'd fail her exam.
- The Caligula: Celestia and the Mayor of Ponyville. The Mayor isn't nearly as good at it.
- Catch Phrase: Fluttershy often responds to Twilight getting her name wrong with "My name is Fluttershyyy!"
- Twilight's standard response: "Shut up" or "I know the name."
- Chain of Deals: The plot of episode 9 (the "Winter Wrap-Up" parody). Twilight needs holy water from Pinkie, who wants vengeance on Fluttershy, who wants her hairbrush back from Rarity, who wants Applejack to lend her some farmhands for her work. It eventually falls apart when Twilight can't remember who wanted what or why.Pinkie Pie: "You were to procure misery from the miserable Fluttershy. An easy task, if Pinkie were to remark. Yes. But... instead... YOU RETURN WITH A HAIRBRUSH!"
Twilight: "No! I know hairbrush fits prominently into the equation here!"
- Children Are Innocent: There seems to be a fair amount of racism between the ponies. However, foals seem oblivious to, if just uncaring about, it, with the CMC being genuine friends and Orion (from RDP) reacting positively to a unicorn and an earth pony.
- Clothes Make the Superman: Subverted. Rainbow Dash thought that a hat would give her super powers, but it didn't.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Rainbow Dash.
- Pinkie Pie as well, a rare malevolent example.
- Zecora, especially in Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunted Nightmare.
- Comedic Sociopath: Pinkie PiePinkie Pie: "I have a better plan! I am going to wear a box, and the box is full of poison lobsters!"
- Comically Missing the Point: Rarity in episode 6.Applejack: "Maybe I should kick y'all in your pretty face!"
Rarity: "You really think my face is pretty?"
- This scene carries it further when AJ then follows Rarity's train of thought and completely loses the point she was trying to make.
- In Rainbow Dash Presents: Cupcakes, Mrs. Cake finds Pinkie in her cutie mark gown with sewn-on wings and unicorn horn necklace with Rainbow Dash (dressed as a gorilla) strapped to a table. The basement is also adorned with organ balloons, painted skulls, and bone furniture. She's more annoyed that Pinkie isn't manning the cash register and has stuff cluttering the basement than the bones, organs, and obvious evidence of murder.
- Continuity Reboot: After the last hiatus, Greg stated that the series will be restarted from the beginning, albeit with an altered timeline and new art style.
- Crapsaccharine World: The world is bright, colorful, and populated by adorable animals. There's also a lot of Fantastic Racism going around, the government is incompetent when it isn't corrupt, the ruling god-queen is a twisted, malevolent, iron-hoofed tyrant who practices all manner of torture and genocide, and there are all manner of Lovecraftian horrors lurking at the fringes of reality.
- Crossdressing Voices: All the main characters are voiced by the same guy, who does not even try to make them sound female (except arguably Fluttershy and, later, Rarity). Somehow, it still works.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: Princess Celestia will shove a thing in your butt.
- Disproportionate Retribution: One of Celestia's advisors once warned another that he was slated to be executed. Celestia, after finding out, punished the second advisor by pouring molten silver down his throat. She then punished the first advisor by pouring molten silver into his ears. And then she executed them both.
- Cursed with Awesome: In episode 7, Fluttershy's curse lets her read minds. Her friends think they all got gypped curse-wise after learning that. As noted in the Blessed With Suck entry above, Fluttershy herself disagrees.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Or rather, it's not intentionally evil. Luna genuinely wants to be friendly, but her attempts at doing so are frightening and/or dangerous and she doesn't take rejection too well.
- Light Is Not Good: Celestia, on the other hand, is a gleefully evil tyrant.
- Deconstructive Parody: Rainbow Dash Presents pokes holes into many of the stories it makes fun of.
- Cupcakes shows how impossible it would be for Pinkie to really have her own secret dungeon in the basement of Sugarcube Corner after Mrs. Cake walks into it.
- Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla shows that Rainbow Dash couldn't run a factory to save her life, let alone a secret one that processes Pony Resources.
- My Little Dashie shows the actual inevitable outcome of keeping Rainbow Dash locked in a small house for the entirety of her formative years.Rarity: "Whoa. You got faaaaaaaaaaat."
- Democracy Is Bad: In Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, the Pegasi didn't want to grind up their youth to produce rainbows... but they were outvoted by the other two races. And the reason the subject came up in the first place is because the electorate wanted rainbows and Celestia wasn't willing or able to provide.
- Demonic Possession: Sweetie Belle, who is possessed by Thrackerzod.
- In Haunting Nightmare, Twilight is possessed by Smarty Pants, who in this series is an avatar for a similar being.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: Celestia arrives during the Parasprite infestation, and Rainbow Dash promptly mouths off. Twilight desperately tries to make excuses and distance herself, as this Celestia is a tyrant with a penchant for torture.Twilight (thinking): You can save this, Twilight, you can save this... think of a lie! *spoken* "Uhh, I don't know!" *thought* NO! That was WRONG, so WRONG!
Celestia: "You don't know?"
Twilight: "I do know!"
Celestia: "Then you lied to me?"
Twilight: *mental panicked screaming*
- A few seconds later, she realizes that Celestia can read her mind.
- Dirty Kid: Scootaloo, oh so much.
- Double Entendre: Scootaloo speaks mainly in this form.
- Rainbow Dash says a few in Episode 3, "Griffon the Brush Off". One is that she's gay because she's so colorful, but she meant it in the "happy" way. Later she says she doesn't want anything to do with dicks ("dick" here meaning "jerk", referring to Gilda), to which Rarity remarks, "They'd be fine if you tried them!"
- Subverted when Twilight tells Applejack that Rarity is building a nest, and Applejack wonders if it's a Double Entendre. Then, Twilight intentionally makes several double entendres just to mess with her.
- Do Wrong, Right: When Twilight finds that Zecora's curse made her horn floppy, gave it a rash, and made it incapable of using magic, she's more annoyed about how stupid it is as a curse than how much it disfigures and weakens her.
- Driven to Suicide: Pinkie, in the Bittersweet adaptation. Unable to afford insulin, she deliberately gives herself fatal ketoacidosis out of spite.Pinkie Pie: And on the eve of her demise, the Equestrian healthcare system will take the trip of guilt! Eheheheheheheh, yes!
- Drowning My Sorrows: Twilight, every time she is reminded of her spectacularly abusive upbringing.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Thrackerzod turns up in the Stinger for episode 7 claiming that there is no such character as "Sweetie Belle". Thrackerzod first speaks in Episode 9 and makes its first on-screen appearance in Episode 10.
- Early Installment Weirdness: In the first episode, Twilight calls Fluttershy by her name.
- Eldritch Abomination: The demon living in Twilight's attic. It's described as half-rat, half-cricket, and having the face of a pony, and it dragged Twilight to "the place where all points converge." She calls it Taz, but its real name (or at least how it prefers to be addressed) is Thrackerzod. It eventually possesses Sweetie Belle.
- For a while, there was apparently a Shoggoth living in Rainbow Dash's fireplace. She urged everyone to not make eye contact with it.
- The… whatever-it-was… that initially manifested as Smarty Pants in Haunting Nightmare. It, in its own words, "seeks the highest star such that [it] may be devoured and allowed to reproduce." When it reveals its true form to Rarity and Applejack, it claims that "Dunwich Horror's got nothing on me!"
- Even Evil Has Standards: In Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, when Orion called Aurora the fat kid causing her to cry.Thrackerzod: "Wow, you are such a jerk."
- Everything Is Better With Primates: Rainbow Dash Presents. Rainbow Dash likes to put primates into her stories in some way. First in "Cupcakes" she dresses as a gorilla. In "Somewhere Only We Know", her owner is an Orangutan, and in "Rainbow Factory" she hides it under the title of "Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla".
- "A Beautiful Day in Equestria" ends with Twilight running into the Everfree Forest. The Stinger reveals it has a nightclub where a large number of primates gather. "Somewhere Only We Know" also replaces the humans in the story with apes.
- Evil Brit: Celestia sounds like an East End gangster, which compliments her grotesque evil.
- Evil Laugh: Celestia at the beginning of Rainbow Dash Presents: Spiderses.
- Evil Overlord: Princess Celestia.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Celestia.
- Eye Scream: Pinkie Pie was going to have Fluttershy's face sprayed with aqua regia, mentioning she might go blind.Explanation
- Extreme Doormat: Fluttershy. If you thought Fluttershy from the actual show had it bad in "Putting Your Hoof Down", this Fluttershy has it much worse. Twilight always forgets her name, characters constantly berate her and Pinkie Pie always frames her. Worst of all, she actually apologizes for their harsh criticisms of her.
- Extreme Graphical Representation: Something does this to a pony secretary in "Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla" when Thrackerzod is startled.
- Fantastic Racism: Twilight really hates Earth Ponies and Pegasi. As does Rarity.
- Pinkie has some less-than-kind things to say about griffons.
- She also dislikes unicorns that aren't Twilight… and the one that is.
- Pinkie has some less-than-kind things to say about griffons.
- Fantastic Slurs: Sometimes, Twilight and Rarity call the earth ponies "mud ponies".
- They also use 'horsefly' as a slur against pegasi, and Surprise calls unicorns 'boneheads' in her song.
- Fat Girl: Parodied in Rainbow Dash Presents when Aurora is designated the fat kid by the others.Aurora: Owwwww... I don't even like chocolate.
Scootaloo: Too bad, fatty.
- Fluttershy says in Episode 14 that she used to be one growing up. Rainbow Dash disagrees.
- Pinkie tries to invoke this on Rarity in Episode 23, but Rarity won't have any of it.
- Flat Character: Rarity worries she may be this.
- Follow the Bouncing Ball: A bouncing cupcake is used during Pinkie Pie's song in Rainbow Dash Presents: Cupcakes.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: Episodes usually have long messages to read in the credits, sometimes only for a few seconds. Video descriptions also have messages and anecdotes from the creator.
- During the "Rainbow Fun Factory" segment of Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, pause when the camera pans down the list of Celestia's powers. A lot of them are hilarious.
- Freudian Trio: Scootaloo is The Id, Applebloom is The Ego and Sweetie Belle is The Superego.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: Celestia. Good Lord.
- Gratuitous Foreign Language: Snips and Snails speak only German and Swedish respectively. Spike then tries to speak to them in Russian.
- Hard-Drinking Party Girl: Applejack.
- Hard Work Hardly Works: From Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook, The Biker Gorilla:Rainbow Dash: Darn it, I've got my own songs, a lengthy script with over two hundred fifty lines of dialogue, several voice actors, and the entire thing is hand-drawn and edited frame by over one thousand frames! Seriously, I have more than one thousand pictures in this folder! BUT THEY SAID THEY'RE NOT GONNA TOUCH IT!
Twilight Sparkle: Well, if they let everyone get by on that amount of effort, I imagine they'd be buried in thousands of submissions doing the exact same thing! They've gotta set standards.
Rainbow Dash: Some guy named Alclop Pones made it to the media page by doing a half-assed one minute voiceover of a scene from Peter Pan. And then another user made it to the media page by adding the chorus of Space Jam to that!
- High-Class Glass: Rainbow Dash imagines a rubber duck in a top hat with a monocle, 'cause he's rich.
- Hilariously Abusive Childhood: Twilight, at the hooves of Princess Celestia.
- Hostile Show Takeover: Celestia takes over from Rainbow Dash's reading in Rainbow Dash Presents: Spiderses. Luna does it in Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunting Nightmare.Princess Luna: "[...] As nopony invites Luna!"
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: The post-ContentID episodes use negative numbers.
- I Have Many Names:"I go by many names: Seaty Belt, Sweaty Belt, Treaty Teats... but you may call me... Thrackerzod!"
- Ill Girl: Aurora. Her wing keeps breaking off and she has Pony-AIDS.
- In Name Only: Other than Twilight getting possessed and Smarty Pants coming to life, Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunting Nightmare has nothing to do with the fanfiction it was based on.
- Ditto with Rainbow Dash Presents: My Little Dashie.
- Hell, some episodes of Mentally Advanced itself fall into this, particularly Episode 12, the "Suited For Success" parody, which manages to turn an episode about Rarity nearly driving herself insane attempting to satisfy all her friends' demands into the Mane cast begrudgingly (and halfheartedly) trying to convince Rarity to get over being dumped.
- Similarly, Episode 9, "Winter Wrap-Up", is turned into Twilight Sparkle's quest for holy water.
- Episode 13, "Feeling Pinkie Keen", becomes Twilight trying to prove to herself that Pinkie has a brain tumor and needs to see a doctor, then getting obsessed with collecting data and ranting about case studies and statistical modelling.
- Episode 22, the "Owl's Well that Ends Well" parody, is turned into a long rambling conversation between Twilight and Spike that, owl aside, has absolutely zero connection to the original episode.
- Episode 23, "Party Of One",
- In the Blood: Luna somewhat implied that Celestia is like this inherently due to their mother's mental illness.
- Incest Is Relative: In Bittersweet, Fluttershy admits to having a large crush on her uncle, which she believes caused her father to leave.
- Insufferable Genius: Twilight, especially in the later episodes. In episode 10, she debates Apple Bloom to the point of tears, then fears she might be turning into Celestia.Apple Bloom: Well, maybe I won't need the sciences! Maybe your science can't explain the reasons why I feel... and it can't explain all the big things, like what makes us angry... or in love... or full of hate about something!
Twilight Sparkle: Your amygdala.
Apple Bloom: My what?
Twilight Sparkle: Your amygdala probably regulates a storage of emotional memories, which is why—
Apple Bloom: What the heck is an amygdala?
Twilight Sparkle: Ohhh well, looks like someone knows less about science than science knows about her!
- Interspecies Romance: In Rainbow Dash Presents: My Little Dashie, Dash forms one with the simian The Jokermort. Though at the end, he attempts to address this via a device that transforms everyone in the world into ponies.
- Jerkass: Twilight. She can't stand any of the other ponies, only associating with them out of fear of Celestia.
"This book is made for kids! It's got illustrated pictures of little fillies enjoying the childhood that I never had!"
- Freudian Excuse: Said fear and bitchiness comes from Celestia constantly and mercilessly abusing her.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Twilight has moments where she is of decent moral fiber, such as apologizing to Apple Bloom.
- Although Twilight did start the argument with Apple Bloom in the first place.
- Jive Turkey: Scootaloo talks with this type of flair. HOO!
- Kick the Dog: Parodied in Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla. Apparently, the rainbow making process works better if the kid is sent into the machine with a puppy, a picture of the kid's family, and some crayons so they can draw in Pony Heaven.
- Kids Are Cruel: Apple Bloom uses this as an argument to bully a pony into buying some apples so she would get ice cream.Apple Bloom: "Children have no Empathy; I don't even care! Now you get me some friggin' ice cream!!"
- Although she subverts this in Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla as she's the one who comforts Aurora when Orion calls her fat.
- Kissing Cousins: Apparently, Applejack's first kiss (we hope) was her cousin Braeburn.
- Knight Templar Parent: Harry Wayne from "Rainbow Dash Presents My Little Dashie" is portrayed this way. In his bid to keep Rainbow Dash safe, he locks her up in the house, expressly forbids her from going outside, doesn't let her socialize with other apes, and gives her no opportunities to exercise or use her bundles of energy. She grows up rebellious and resentful of him. Word of God is that this is pretty much how Greg saw the man as in the original fic.
- Lampshade Hanging: Done HARD (HOO!) in Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla (but it's really Rainbow Factory), in particular with the fact that the titular rainbow factory is made of clouds.
- Laughing Mad: Pinkie Pie
- Let's Play: Let's Ramble over Pony Fantasy 6, part 1, notable for being done in character as Rainbow Dash.
- The Let's Plays have since garnered its own spin-off.
- Lighter and Softer: Rainbow Dash Presents is this to Rainbow Factory and Cupcakes, dialing back the horror greatly while upping the funny.
- Lip Lock: In the early episodes, Greg openly admitted he had no idea what he was doing, so scenes were minimally edited, and the dialogue written to fit the preexisting lip-flaps, which sometimes led to some... weird lines. Shrimps.
- Light Bulb Joke: In the "Winter Wrap Up" episode, Rarity tells a racist light bulb joke about Pegasi.
- The Load: Fluttershy. During the journey to slay the dragon, all she ended up doing was slow everyone down. Later, when they went to confront Zecora, she was tasked with bringing a shovel that they would kill the zebra with, but she forgot to bring it. Although, Twilight actually originally tasked Pinkie with bringing the shovel, only asking Fluttershy do it after they were in the Forest and realizing she wasn't given a task.
- Loophole Abuse: Applejack figures out how to cancel Twilight's Celestia-mandated slumber party by daring Twilight to do so in a game of Truth Or Dare.
- In RDP: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, the rules state one pegasus can't help another in the flight exam. It says nothing about earth ponies or unicorns. Subverted in that the loophole abuse actually causes Scootaloo to fail her exam.
- Lovecraft Lite: Especially in Haunting Nightmare. What's with all those Eldritch Abominations targeting Twilight Sparkle? See also Crapsaccharine World entry.
- The very existence of Thrackerzod, a nightmarish amalgamation of preying mantis, rat, and horse features who comes from "between the cracks in the walls; the dark places where only dreams may go". He seems content to possess Sweetie Belle and troll Twilight, however. In fact, she has protected or tried to protect the rest of the cast on at least two separate occasions.
- Lovable Sex Maniac: Scootaloo. Strangely enough. Hoo!
- Madness Mantra: Bones and skin and bones and blood and bones and skin and bones and blood and bones and skin and bones and blood and...
- Major Injury Underreaction: Rainbow Dash in RDP: Cupcakes is more disappointed than hurt after Pinkie cuts off her wings. She becomes less disappointed after finding out Pinkie plans to put them on a hat to make it the fastest hat in Equestria. And her question after getting stabbed to death is "Now what?" She proceeds to take a nap on a cloud, avoid work, and remarks she doesn't feel any different. She then joins the Ghost Wonderbolts (under Pinkie's logic that if there's a ghost Rainbow Dash, there therefore must be Ghost Wonderbolts.)
- Man of a Thousand Voices: All the main characters are voiced by the same guy. Except Thrackerzod.
- Somewhat subverted in the earlier episodes when most of the ponies (except of course for Pinkie) sound alike. He varies the voices more as the series goes on.
- Master Race: The unicorn ponies, who see themselves as the master race due to their magic powers and look down on the earth ponies and even the pegasus ponies.
- The pegasus ponies seem to have this attitude as well.
- Mercy Kill: After having molten silver poured down his throat, Celestia executed that poor advisor.
- Minion with an F in Evil: Rainbow Dash in Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla. However, she's supposed to be the one in charge of the Rainbow Factory, which technically makes her a Big Bad with an F in Evil.
Surprise: "Man, get over it! After a few of these, it's like nothing! Sure, you stay up late at night thinking about how your family would think of you, you wonder what Pony Hell's gonna be like, but other than that it's no big deal!"
- Dragon-in-Chief: As a result, the Factory's day to day operations fall to chief engineer Surprise.
- Mistaken for Gay: Rainbow Dash. Gilda outright says she's a lesbian and operates under the assumption that they're in a relationship, but Dash thinks that means Gilda's from the island of Lesbia.
- Most Definitely Not a Villain: Thrackerzod and Smarty Pants are... not convincing as normal ponies.Thrackerzod: "I love to ride bikes! In the park! With... my friends!"Possessed!Twilight: I too love riding bikes, and other common activities!Thrackerzod: "We are normal."
- My Life Flashed Before My Eyes: Twilight in Episode 8. Lampshaded when Pinkie Pie interrupts her flashback sequence.
- The Nicknamer: Twilight seems to have taken to calling Rainbow Dash "Chump" recently. She also comes up with any number of alternate names for Fluttershy.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Zecora talks like one of the many impersonations of the late comedian Ed Wynn's "Perfect Fool" persona.
- Obliviously Evil: Luna. Unlike Celestia, who is a sadist, Luna just wants to have friends and is genuinely unaware of how horrifying and dangerous her attempts at befriending ponies are.
- Oblivious to Love: Rainbow Dash does not realize Gilda's feelings.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: Rainbow Dash is a government employee. In "Winter Wrap Up", she complains about all the paperwork she would have to fill out to change the weather.
- Discussed in "Swarm of the Century" when the characters are trying to figure out how to get rid of the parasprite infestation.note
- One of the Kids: Deconstructed. Rainbow Dash, by her own admission, isn't good with kids – not because she doesn't like them, but because she encourages and joins in on their shenanigans.Rainbow Dash: This one time, I was supposed to be watching my cousin's kid, and her kid wanted to try eating ice cream for dinner! And y'know, I thought, I'd never really tried that before! Kids have good ideas sometimes! But then I got all hyperactive, and I did a bunch of tricks to impress her, but then I crashed and broke both my wings and all four legs, and she started throwing up because she had too much ice cream... And when I woke up in the hospital, I wasn't allowed to watch my cousin's kids anymore.
Apple Bloom: Your cousin's daughter got to eat ice cream for dinner?! That sounds fantastic!
Rainbow Dash: It was great at the time!
- Only Sane Pony: Apparently, Apple Bloom. Naturally she gets ignored.
- Although it's more she does what her children's books tell her is right.
- Applejack has shades of this at times, as does Fluttershy. Twilight thinks she is this, but she isn't.
- Original Character: Lampshaded in the Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla video:Orion: I'm Orion. Orion Comet. You can call me OC for short!
- Overly Long Gag: Miss Blossomforth describing the criteria for failure in Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla.
- Pet the Dog: Celestia of all ponies is surprisingly pleasant to Fluttershy before she steals Celestia's bird.
- Pokémon Speak: None of the background ponies say anything other than "meep".note
Twist: thmeep thmeepthmeep thmeep!
- Twist also only speaks in meeps, yet inexplicably still has a lisp.
- Ponified Abomination: Thrackerzod, a creature who'd be right at home in the Cthulhu Mythos, while he's possessing Sweetie Bell. His natural form is creepier.
- Power Incontinence: Fluttershy, after Zecora's curse gives her the ability to read minds but she cannot turn it off, discovering that A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Read.
- Power of Friendship: Nope! Applejack at one point tries to invoke this to get some stallions to do more efficient farm work. All that happens is they try to kill each other.
- Psychic Static: Twilight uses the Rubber Ducky Song to stave off mind reading.
- Psycho Lesbian: Pinkie has displayed interest in both Gilda and Twilight. In Episode 12, she outright says she's a lesbian, removing all remaining doubt.
- Punch Clock Villain: In Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, Dash makes it clear that she's only supervising the Rainbow Factory for the healthcare benefits.Rainbow Dash: "This job does not need a degree / That is how they got stuck with me / I need this for Healthcare, you see / So I can afford therapy!"
- Purple Prose: Luna talks in it.
- Really Gets Around: RarityRainbow Dash: "Oh my god, when we get back from this, we are SO getting laid!"
Rarity: "But I already get laid frequently!"
Pinkie Pie: "Ah, Rarity, you are a slut."
- Room 101: Name-checked directly by Spike, when he tells Twilight he confessed to things that never even happened.Spike: "I admitted to things you didn't do! They asked me if you were secretly workin' for Mothra. I told 'em yes! If you weren't already on a list, you're definitely on one now!"
- Reset Button: After episode 23, "Party Of One" – which was never officially released, though it's not hard to find – the series switched to hand-drawn images (later Flash puppets) and started over from the beginning.
- Running Gag: "There's punch and cookies by the door!"
- Also, Twilight forgetting Fluttershy's name.
- Sadist Teacher: Princess Celestia to Twilight Sparkle. Well, Sadist Homeschooling Mother.
- Sanity Slippage: Twilight while speaking with Celestia in episode 8.
- Saying Sound Effects Out Loud: "Screeeeeeeaaaaaammm!!!" (strangely enough, it only happens in that early episode)
- The Scapegoat: Pinkie Pie uses Fluttershy to act as one a lot.Rarity: "Last week, I caught you spray painting the word 'ASS' all over my windows, and you told me it was Fluttershy!"
Pinkie: "It was! (beat) And you are an ass!"
Rarity: "And then there was the time when I caught you in my room replacing all my condoms with live cobras, and you told me that was Fluttershy!"
Pinkie: "That is just the kind of thing that she would do!"
Rarity: "And then there was that time when you stole my sewing machine and left Fluttershy, dressed up as a burglar, tied and gagged in my living room!"
Pinkie: "It seems Fluttershy gets blamed for a lot of things around here!"
- Seinfeldian Conversation: Mentally Advanced loves this one.
"The interesting thing about this episode was that it was already about bickering ponies, so it was full of angry ponies shouting at each other no matter what I may have wanted to do."
- Cavemen vs. Astronauts Debate: Lampshaded in the description for Episode 6:
- Self-Insert Fic: Rainbow Dash accidentally locks herself into the story she's narrating in Rainbow Dash Presents: Bubbles
- Shaggy Dog Story: In Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, it turns out that the factory employees could have produced rainbows from crayons and photographs, and therefore didn't need to kill so many foals. Also may count as an inversion of Shoot the Shaggy Dog.
- Shout-Out: Lots.
Dash: "I don't wanna be cupcakes!"– moments later –Pinkie: "Oh, you think I will cut your wings off!"
- Thrackerzod's dubious claims of normalcy, and her preferred name, are a reference to a one-off villain from The Tick.
- And she just can't even remember how many times her mother had to tell her the chant of Cthulhu.
- Dash makes the obligatory Cupcakes reference when being hounded by Pinkie in "Griffon the Brush Off".
- A nod to The Twilight Zone in Pie in the Sky: "It's a cookbook!"
- Spike says that they took him to Room 101.
- In Rainbow Dash Presents: Cupcakes, one of the skulls on the wall is painted like The Joker. Later, Pinkie Pie sings part of the theme songs for Spongebob Squarepants and the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers.
- Rainbow Dash Presents is a reference to Alfred Hitchcock Presents.
- In the Somewhere Only We Know episode, the marquee over the movie theatre says Planet of the Apes.
- The kids are taken to the Rainbow Factory by Dazzler and the Blood-Eyed Cat of Security.
- One of the two ponies at the start is Firefly.
- The drive-thru they stop at has a familiar looking, whale-shaped speaker.
- Additionally, one of the background ponies in the factory is wearing a wrestling mask that resembles Strong Bad.
- Thrackerzod instructs the foals how to escape the factory like Olmec would in Legends of the Hidden Temple.
- Scootaloo's Anything That Moves behavior and her knack for posing and yelling "HOO!" seem to be a clear nod to Johnny Bravo.
- In Episode 5, Pinkie quotes "Surfin' Bird", and the very end of Rainbow Dash Presents: My Little Dashie is one big "Baby Got Back" reference.
- Sidetracked by the Analogy: Happens a lot throughout the series.Pinkie: "Why are we talking about dishes? Pinkie is confused!"
- Silly Reason for War: The whole reason the thing with Nightmare Moon happened was because Celestia refused to dress up as a banana.
- Simpleton Voice: Zecora talks in an Ed Wynn voice.
- Spared by the Adaptation: Orion, Aurora, and Scootaloo in the Rainbow Factory adaptation. Apple Bloom and Thrackerzod don't count because they weren't in the original fanfic.
- Spin-Off: Rainbow Dash Presents, where Rainbow Dash reads and puts her own spin on various fanfics, mostly ones that are already infamous within the fandom, such as Cupcakes.
- Another episode parodies Rainbow Factory and another episode parodies Spiderses. Yes, you apparently can parody a blatant Troll Fic.
- Harry Potter and the Soul Stroller.
- Allen Hour might become one, a series of short sketches written by Allen.
- Let's Ramble With Rae, a Let's Play spin-off that began when Greg crowned Rainbow Dash Queen of the Mojave.
- Spoof Aesop: At the end of episode 4.Trixie: "Dating someone is just like picking out a parakeet from the pet store. You should always look for a bird that's friendly and getting along with the others. Well, that's all I got."
- Start My Own: Greg used to be part of the team creating another abridged series of the show but left over Creative Differences with the rest of the crew. He wound up completing 8 episodes in the time it took that team to do just one, and his were far more positively received.
- The Straight Man: Applejack has by far the most common sense out of any of the main characters.
- To the point that she doesn't even get her lines changed in the theme song!
- Son of an Ape: If humans appear on-screen, they're some kind of simian (usually Orangutans or Gorillas, with the occasional Chimpanzee).
- Southern Belle: According to Word of God Luna was planned to be this in Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunting Nightmare. Greg evidently cannot do a Southern accent to save his life (though it does coincidentally resemble some extremely obscure Deep South dialects that went extinct prior to the Great Depression).
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: this gem from Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla:Surprise: "See? We're all having fun! You don't need to run away through the cloud floor, or through the walls, or anything! You are not gonna be ground up into rainbows! Heh heh, that's a silly thing to think was gonna happen!"
- Anytime Thrackerzod says "I am a normal pony."
- Sweet Tooth: Apple Bloom's eyes light up at the mention of cupcakes, and she's willing to help Pinkie smuggle contraband cupcakes across the border in order to taste some. Earlier on, she is less than enthusiastic at the idea of selling apples, but throw in the promise of ice cream and she becomes rather too eager.Apple Bloom: "Children have no empathy. I don't even care! Now you give me some friggin' ice cream!!"
Doctor Whooves: "Ok, just take the money and leave me alone!"
- Take That: In Episode 4 (the "Boast Busters" episode), the original MLP:FiM Abridged project that Greg left is the butt of a few jokes.Rarity: "So what exactly is this show?"
Trixie: "Okay, I really loved Peter Pan On Ice, so I'm going to make a parody of Peter Pan On Ice, but every character is Darth Vader. That's the hook. And because I love the show, I really wanna stay true to the characters. So I'm gonna be holding open auditions to look for people who are EXACTLY like Peter Pan if he were Darth Vader. None of this 'I'm a good actor but I only sound kinda like Pater Pan who is Darth Vader', I need exactly like the character."
Applejack: "Well, that's just plain stupid."
Trixie: "Also, everyone gets to write."
Applejack: "Well, that's just plain stupider!"
- Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla refers to major MLP fansite Equestria Daily as "Trixie Variety Show", given the site owner's preference for Trixie.
- There's also mention in Dash's rant of someone named "Alclop Pones", a pretty thinly-veiled reference to the maker of another abridged series, SherclopPones. This is due to Equestria Daily's administrative crew (and a lot of its userbase) traditionally having a blatant preference for Friendship Is Witchcraft over Mentally Advanced.
- Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla refers to major MLP fansite Equestria Daily as "Trixie Variety Show", given the site owner's preference for Trixie.
- The Fun in Funeral: Only the rest of the Mane Six attend Pinkie's funeral in Rainbow Dash Presents: Bittersweet, and when asked to speak about her, Rarity gloats that she totally called that Pinkie would commit suicide, Twilight expresses disbelief about how Pinkie died in this day and age, Applejack has nothing to say, Fluttershy is drowned out by dubstep as per Pinkie's last will and testament, and Rainbow Dash makes it about herself and her own feelings of guilt.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Thrackerzod saves Twilight from Smarty Pants in Haunting Nightmare, citing this.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Twilight to RarityApplejack: "I bet Rarity knows best about getting facials."
Rarity: (throws mud mask at Applejack's face) "Yeah, here's a tip: don't get it in your eyes, and seriously was that a burn, Applejack? Did I just get burned?"
Twilight Sparkle: "I think you just got burned, bitch!"
- Third-Person Person: Pinkie Pie
- Those Wacky Nazis: "Sieg heil, sleep Nazi. Ven do ve put Applejack in der konzentration kamp?"
- Throwaway Country: The Gryphon Homeland was burned to the ground by Celestia in response to their invasion.
- However, this took place decades ago, so they may have rebuilt at least partially.
- Token Evil Teammate: Few of the principal characters are all that good anyway, but Pinkie in particular is the only one that commits heinous crimes For the Evulz.
- Thrackerzod for the Cutie Mark Crusaders.
- Trouble Entendre: The weather is fast, and it's everywhere!
- Tsundere: Twilight. We pretty much only see the "tsun" side, though... until Celestia shows up.
- Unfortunate Names: Carwash Rugmuncher. She's apparently a lesbian carwasher.
Twilight Sparkle: "Toggaf was named as such because his dad thought it would be a funny surprise when he learned to spell his name backwards in school."
- Played With. That is what Rainbow Dash wants her name to be changed to. Because she likes washing cars, and is under the impression that Lesbia is a tropical island (and a nice place to live).
- From Twilight's story about a pair of wizards:
- Unstuck in Time: Played with in the beginning of Rainbow Dash Presents: My Little Dashie, almost to the point of being a Shout-Out to Slaughterhouse-Five.Rainbow Dash: "Harry Wayne lived his life like any normal monkey: One day at a time, experiencing one event after the next. Or, maybe every event all at once if you think about it, but he just thinks he's experiencing every event one at a time, or, y'know, anyway, uh..."
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Twilight. If her Nightmare Sequence in Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunted Nightmare, where she is seen playing with her brother and lovingly embracing her parents, which leads to her being possessed by Smarty Pants is any indication.
- Verbal Tic: Pinkie Pie ends a lot of her sentences with "Yes!" Yes.Pinkie Pie: "It is so cute when you give up on life. Yes!"
- She even does this with writing. In Sugarcube Corner, "Yes" is written on the tip jar and on the price signs.
- Scootaloo also apparently has... *hoof gesture* HOO! ...one.
- Villain Song: In Rainbow Dash Presents: Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla, Rainbow Dash and Surprise explain their motivations through song.
- Smarty Pants has quite an epic one in Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunting Nightmare.
- Villainous Rescue: In Rainbow Dash Presents: Haunting Nightmare, Thrackerzod plays a role in saving the cast from Possessed Twilight due to an earlier claim on Twilight's body.
- Virginity Makes You Stupid: Rainbow Dash is completely clueless about how Gilda sees their relationship and thinks "Lesbia" is a tropical island somewhere.
- Made extra funny due to the fact that the word "lesbian" is traditionally used to describe people from the Greek island of Lesbos.
- In Rainbow Dash Presents: Cupcakes, she talks about ponies "hugging" each other.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Twilight Sparkle and Applejack, besides the fact that they are constantly at each other's throats and the casual racist remark, really do seem to get along better than the others.
- Vocal Dissonance: Thrackerzod is the most extreme case.
- Technically all the characters bar Spike and Big Macintosh have this, as all mares are voiced by men and the stallions we've seen so far have female voices.
- Technically-technically, Spike still counts since he's voiced by a woman in the original.
- Also, Celestia.
- Aurora sounds like Bill Cosby.
- Enforced. All characters have a voice opposite of what's expected of their gender, except Big Mac, who has a "girly" voice.
- Pinkie Pie sounds like Dr. Doofenshmirtz.
- Technically all the characters bar Spike and Big Macintosh have this, as all mares are voiced by men and the stallions we've seen so far have female voices.
- Vocal Evolution: Rainbow Dash's voice gets higher every episode (this is very noticeable in episodes 1 and 2, for instance), and the others' voices become more distinct as well, although there have been occasional lapses.
- Voice of the Legion: Twilight, while she is possessed by Smarty Pants.
- Wham Line: The very second line delivered in "Rainbow Dash Presents: Spiderses" changes whatever you expected this episode was going to be like.Celestia: Good morning.Rainbow Dash: It's the middle of the afternoon.Celestia: It's always morning somewhere.
- What the Hell Is That Accent?: Pinkie Pie's accent is... Russian mob leader? Colombian Drug Dealer?
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Apple Bloom, who despite – perhaps because of – being a child, is the only member of the cast who tries to stick to principles (and, for that matter, basic pony decency).
- What Beautiful Eyes: Said in Smarty Pants's Villain Song, though it was probably meant in a mocking manner.You've pretty eyes, yes you do!/Flesh and blood, I want it too!
- Wrong Genre Savvy: Rainbow Dash has no flipping idea what any of the stories she reads in Rainbow Dash Presents are really about. Most notably, she thought that the infamous Dark Fic Cupcakes was a romantic comedy!
- Yandere: Luna has some traits of this.
- You Don't Look Like You: An unintentional example. Captain Hook the Biker Gorilla features Blossomforth as the teacher in charge of the filly-flyers race, but makes her a green Pegasus re-skin of Cheerilee.note In Greg's defense, his episode came out months before Blossomforth actually appeared in the show.note
- You Just Told Me: How Rarity finds out about Applejack and Braeburn.