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Headscratchers / My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic Season 9

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     9.01 & 9.02 The Beginning of the End 
  • Given that Grogar can revive King Sombra, why did he not revive the Storm King (in universe and not just Liev Schriber is unavailabile) to be part of his Legion of Doom?
    • Sombra brings far more to the table than the Storm King, making it worth the effort of resurrecting him. The Storm King's qualities were personal charisma, a reputation as a badass, good people management skills, a huge army and vast personal fortune. Not only are most of those things of limited use working in secret, they were either lost or highly compromised by his defeat.
    • I meant revive the Storm King as well as Sombra, not instead of him.
    • As noted above, on his own Storm King doesn't offer much to Grogar. He was a threat because he had magical items, technology and an army. If he were to be brought back to life he'd have access to none of those things anymore. Plus, resurrection may not be all that easy even for Grogar, so he'll choose his targets carefully.
  • What changed Sombra from hardly talkative Sauron expy to talkative and smug supervillain? Sure he is still the chessmaster and crazy prepared tyrant he was, but it was toned down to the standard MLP villain kind of villain. Wasn't the whole part of not speaking much beyond a few words because he was a no-nonsense enemy who knew not to do the typical defeat by arrogance?
    • I think the implication is that he wasn't fully formed during his first appearance. He only even achieved his pony form in the last few seconds before his destruction, and before that he might not even have been capable of speech.
    • Indeed, plus once he did regain pony form is actually where most of his dialog in his first appearance happened. He was just only in that form for a very short time.
  • Ok so Grogar used Sombra as an example to the other villains about why a villain team-up is necessary, but isn't forcing them to work for him counterproductive. The reason why the Mane Six work together is because they really care for each other and aren't forced to be friends so why couldn't he at least try to be friendly to them. Plus he may be able to make them fall in line but how is he going to make them like each other. It's not like any of the villains joined forces out of any moral standards. Wouldn't it benefit him more if he just said to them "I know you guys aren't the teamwork type but you all want the same thing, destroy the Mane Six. If you join forces with each other and me, you can go your own separate ways once we win" instead of go "work with me or else"? I get that Grogar is evil, but he is supposed to be wise enough to realise the teamwork of the Mane Six and exploit it by doing the same thing, so he should know better than being unnecessarily cruel.
    • He did offer that they would rule Equestria together as a reward. However, Grogar seems to be operating under a stance that affection and perhaps trust isn't vital, only cooperation is. Also, perhaps in his mind he's far from being all that cruel given he did rescue Tirek and Cozy from Tartarus and gave Chrysalis a group to belong to again.
    • He probably doesn't believe that a mutual enemy is enough to get four ambitious Big Bads under his heel (and in Sombra's case, he's right). He figures that unless he cows them into submission somehow, they'll either jockey amongst each other for power and influence or backstab him to take the reins for themselves.
      • Considering what Tirek did to Discord, I'd say this is likely the case.
    • Which raises another question, why does he think teamwork would help. The Flim Flam Brothers (Yes I know he didn't summon them but he did witness the four summoned villains so why not them too?) worked together and they still failed. Plus Chrysalis used to have minions and she still lost too.
      • I don't think having minions = cooperation in Grogar's eyes, and Flim and Flam are probably beneath his notice as all they care about is money and fame. His plan seems to be to not simply work together but to do it better.
  • How did Twilight Sparkle know about Daybreaker such that Celestia turning into her was part of her greatest fear?
    • Recall at the end of the episode that featured Daybreaker, Twilight demanded Starlight tell her every detail of what had happened. Presumably that would include Starlight using her magic to project an image of what Daybreaker looked like.
  • Grogar's Legion of Doom is missing a few villains that could add to its effectiveness in achieving its goals. Even if Nightmare Moon and Discord are off the table, why not recruit Ahuizotl or unleash the Pony of Shadows and let it take Cozy Glow as a host (especially considering how weak she is compared to the other villains)?
    • Ahuizotl doesn't really have any special powers or knowledge that could benefit Grogar as far as we know, and Grogar seemed to be going for villains who had bigger ambitions than Ahuizotl. As for the Pony of Shadows, opening a portal to Limbo may be beyond even Grogar's powers. Alternatively, getting an eldritch being like it to cooperate with his plan may be impossible. Recall the Pony of Shadows didn't want to rule Equestria, it wanted to make Equestria into a reflection of itself.
    • In the case of Ahuizotl, Daring Doubt reveals that he was Good All Along (that twist however is a whole other can of worms altogether). Perhaps Grogar knows of this, so he doesn't think he's qualified enough to be in the legion.
  • Did Luna seriously say that Equestria was at it's most peaceful in years? With all these threats having gone through throughout the series and the brief conquest of Canterlot in the movie, it seems to be anything but peaceful.
    • Presumably she's speaking of the general state of the nation. Yes there have been many threats, but they've all been resolved in a matter of days at most with few long term effects. Compared to protracted wars and such (who knows just what Celestia dealt with for the past thousand years) the nation indeed has had a long period of "harmony". Not to mention how long-standing distrust and animosity toward and from neighboring species and nations has been reduced to an unprecedented degree, increasing harmony even more.
    • The Celestial Era was nothing but peaceful. There is no justification for this claim. It’s another thing the new writers like Nicole Dubuc screwed up.
      • It was peaceful for the ponies with each other but they were not peaceful with the neighboring nations. The dragons and changelings were hostile and the yaks and the griffons weren't openly aggressive but neither were their relationships on good terms. All of these relations were made friendly due to Twilight's efforts.
  • Since Flim and Flam are one of the alternate timelines (in fact the second worst one) why did Grogar not summon them?
    • It's easy. He didn't think of them as a serious threat. The only one who actually knows that is Twilight.
    • They also wouldn't join him, or more likely instantly betray him. Flim and Flam are fundamentally opposed to the group's motives, in a very real sense they positively thrive on peace, harmony and prosperity.
  • If Sombra can mind control ponies with his own magic, then what are the helmets for?
    • To make the brainwashed royal guards more intimidating perhaps?
    • They might block attempts to dispel their effects.
  • If Grogar created the creatures we see in the show, then why give them humanizing and positive traits (Such as the Manticore from the first two episodes being actually decent when he doesn't have a thorn stuck in this paw and the cockatrice that fled when Fluttershy told it off while using the stare.) Shouldn't he have made them emotionless and mindless and obedient only to him?
    • Perhaps they have forgotten about their original purposes due to Grogar being away for a (very) long time?, but he may rectify that once he gets his full power back.
    • Alternatively, perhaps he didn't create those monsters. Perhaps he created other ones, or perhaps he created their ancestors and the monsters developed over time to be more than what he initially made them to be.
      • The second theory is more likely the more I thought of it (even before I saw this reply). His line and nickname seem ambiguous.
  • Don't people of royalty rule until they die? How are monarchs allowed to retire?
    • Voluntarily giving up the throne to a successor has been a thing in many societies through history. Technically its called "abdication" (and can be forceful, or voluntary). In some societies it was a rare event, happening only in extreme and often violent circumstances, while in others it was considered routine.
  • Why doesn't Grogar re-revive Sombra in the end? It's not like he can't as far as we know. Yeah, this time his body was vaporized, but Grogar didn't need a piece of his body to revive him the first time. He just drew a circle in the ground with the letter M (what could that stand for?), and Sombra came out of the ground. He clearly doesn't need his horn or anything. Didn't he himself say that if Sombra was defeated again he would have to serve him? Why doesn't he revive him than? Was he expecting Sombra to lose but still survive? If so, why does that matter? He could still revive him again as far as we know (he didn't say he couldn't so we have no reason to believe so). Did he feel like Sombra betrayed him when he decided to take over all of Equestria instead of just the Crystal Empire like they agreed? Even if that is the case, I think it's more pragmatic to revive him again and just threaten to destroy him himself if he tries to betray him again. After being killed again, Sombra would have probably realized that Grogar was right and they do need to work together. Sombras failure could still serve as a warning to the other villains. Show them how he lost, have Sombra back it up himself, tell Sombra and the others that if they ever try to turn on him again he will destroy them himself and leave them dead. Sombra was clearly the most powerful of the four recruits. Cozy is a kid, Chrysalis at her base power is far below the princesses, and Tirek is only in his second stage, a stage which the princesses stated wouldn't be so bad if he didn't have Discord helping him. Sombra required both Luna and Celestia to be defeated 1000 years ago, so he should be the most powerful of the four in their current forms. Why not keep a powerful ally like that?
    • If resurrection is difficult, expensive or time consuming, it's certainly plausible that Grogar would be less than willing to do it a second time for a smug egotist who spat in his face, and whose lack of concept of just how outmatched he was in modern day Equestria puts Leeroy Jenkins to shame. His raw power is of limited worth against a world where Celestia and Luna working together is possibly fifth on the list of things that can effortlessly kick your ass, and by not resurrecting him Grogar makes it clear that he won't save you from the consequences of being an idiot.
    • As for Grogar's deal that said failure leads to servitude instead of death, Sombra broke the deal first. The deal was that if he succeeded in retaking The Crystal Empire, he would keep it. It said nothing about Sombra taking over Equestria as a whole. Sombra was the one who chose to go the extra mile. Grogar may have also thought that if he revived him, the other villains will feel like there is no consequence for failure and see Grogar's threat as all talk.Sure the warning might still work if he revived him again but better to be safe than sorry, at least to him.
  • The other Mane Six recap all the threats to Equestria they faced thus far except the Storm King & Tempest. It just bugs me since they had Flim & Flam count even though the only thing they did "evil" was in the second worst alternate timeline. And the movie is canon to the show.
    • The movie is canon but they don't want to include details that require you to have watched it. Same reason they don't mention anything about the Equestria Girls spin-off despite those also being canon. It's why we got Silverstream instead of the princess from the movie as a student at Twilight's school.
      • Of course the princess from the movie isn't a student there. She has princess responsibilities.
  • Why would the Everfree forest by itself go crazy in the first place after the Tree of Harmony is destroyed? The Tree of Harmony was only hampered by the Plunder Vines and even that was because it lacked the Elements of Harmony. Where did all these extra vines come from if they were supposed to be destroyed alongside the Plunder Vines the first time? Seems to be a cheap way to get the Princesses out of Canterlot...
    • The Plunder Vines were an extraordinary case—they also formed black, thorny clouds; crab-like plants whose spray can incapacitate ponies and appear to be conscious(them ganging up on Twilight appeared very deliberate), and an innate magic that could disable Unicorn horns. The Tree of Harmony could keep the normal Everfree growth at bay but the Plunder Vines were far beyond that. Starswirl outright says that the new growth is par for the course for the Everfree Forest without the Tree of Harmony, and even when it was just the Mane 6 against it, the only issue was that it regrew too fast after being cut down, whereas Plunder Vines were borderline invulnerable.
  • Is handing the reigns of Equestria to the Mane Six really a wise idea? While Princess Twilight has shown leadership qualities, she has barely any onscreen political experience outside of signing piles of papers because of the very genre of the show not being about politics. Not to mention, running the School of Friendship would have pushed her away from the political field altogether. Even if we give her the benefit of doubt and assume that every aspect of the boring political stuff was done offscreen, she has shown that she still suffers from panic attacks at the sign of sudden curveballs like the retirement announcement and her friends have no experience in the field of politics. And that is not counting all of their own personal civilian commitments. The last thing we need is for Grogar and his Legion of Doom to be defeated only for Equestria to collapse in on itself a week after by their very own heroes, which would make quite a Cruel Twist Ending for G4 altogether. There's a reason why superheroes running for presidency usually never turn out well.
    • I'm sure the whole point of it is that the decision isn't as well thought of as it seemed. This is why the two sisters realized it and gave Twilight more time to prepare for it. Besides, this is just the beginning of season 9.

     9.03 Uprooted 
  • Why did the Young Six want to go to where the top of the tree was destroyed instead of through the passage they went in when the tree tested them and see if any of the underground roots are still around?
    • Judging by how we saw its energy move through the roots at the end of season 8, the tree's actual spirit/presence isn't normally in that underground area but rather is a place it can sometimes inhabit. The aboveground tree seems to be the tree's actual being/core, and even if the student six didn't know this, since the tree told them it needed their help, they would want to go to the part they knew had been in trouble.
    • It's possible they did go down there, and there was nothing there. Such a event would be rather irrelevant to the plot, so they decided not to show it.
  • A common complaint is that the rebirth of the tree to the tree house undermines the devastating impact of the tree's destruction in the premier. Any counterarguments?
    • Is that necessarily a bad thing? The overall theme of the episode, at least from what I could see, is how the loss of something can lead to something greater; and, to a lesser extent, how your love for something dear can keep it alive in your heart long after it's gone. The impact of the Tree of Harmony's destruction might be undermined by it being revived and then some the very next episode, but for an episode that's part of the final season of MLP, IMO it's a fair trade-off for the consequent aesops.
    • Also, given how powerful the tree was (and its repeated uses of an ability to prepare for things), it could be argued that having it truly killed off with a single surprise attack from "some would-be-king" would be rather nonsensical.
    • Also, has anyone noticed that, after the Treehouse is formed, the Spirit of the Tree never makes another appearance? This is just a theory on my part, but I think the idea is that the creation of the Treehouse for the Student Six was the last act of the Spirit before it... passed on, entrusting the spirit of Harmony to the Student Six.
  • So, is there an in-story explanation why the corresponding colors for the Elements of Harmony switched around for the Student Six? I can’t remember who exactly was what, but I do remember Gallus having the purple glow of the Element of Magic in School Raze, and now in this episode he has blue glow for the Element of Loyalty. And he wasn’t the only student to get switched around between this episode and School Raze. So... what up?
    • Maybe it's like how how the Princesses wield multiple Elements, one isn't limited to respresenting one Element apiece (the Mane Six are the exception as their personalities only fit one each)?
    • The Crowded Cast Shot from the final episode pairs them back with their old Elements, so this episode was most likely the anomaly/error.
      • Alternately, each of the Student Six shone with the element THEY were representing, not necessarily the one corresponding to them. So Gallus might normally represent Magic in himself, but Loyalty in regards to the Mane Six (being the brash, headstrong and slightly abrasive teammate, like RD)
  • Why would the Tree (or its "messenger") choose to appear as Crystal Princess Twilight instead of a form closer to the Tree itself? Really isn't any need to invoke A Form You Are Comfortable With or You Cannot Grasp the True Form since everycreature was already familiar with the Tree and it's power.
    • Given the emphasis the Tree places on Twilight, what with her cutie mark making up the entire core of the tree, it may simply identify with her the most. It may not have its own identity as far as a personal appearance goes.

     9.04 Sparkle's Seven 
  • So they decided NOW to add the security measures? This is especially the case of the remains of Chrysalis's throne where had they used it after, the invasion of the Storm King would become less successful if not easily solved. Remember, the movie takes place between seasons 7 and 8 where Thorax is leader of the Changelings and the EEA conflicts didn't happen yet so wouldn't Thorax grant permission to use the remains?
    • Keep in mind that even if they had implemented these security measures, Tempest confronted the princesses outside the castle walls, so those measures wouldn't have mattered (she didn't use teleportation or portals either, which is the only thing the throne pieces defended against, and only against getting inside the castle as we see Luna teleport the crown just fine). The possibility of altering the pieces of Chrysalis' throne was probably Shining Armor's idea, and he may not have even known it was possible until he asked Star Swirl to experiment with it. The fans would probably not have been enough to deter the air ships either.
  • Why does it look like Zephyr is still an obnoxious jerk flirting with an obviously-not-interested Rainbow Dash? Didn't he develop by the end of Flutter Brutter? And they accuse Fluttershy of getting character resets.
    • His development had nothing to do with realizing RD had no interest in him, it was squarely with actually finishing something he started (namely the mane therapy training, which he did finish). And the last scene of his episode showed he still had a lot of issues (and that his parents also think RD has a crush on him).
  • Isn't popping the air balloon a really dangerous thing for Spike to do as part of his gambit? How did he expect it to land without killing or seriously injuring Pinkie?
    • She's Pinkie, she goes through slapstick accidents all the time without a scratch. Plus there are tons of unicorns down below to catch her with telekinesis if she ends up needing it.
  • I might be stupid for not getting it, but what was Luna's problem with the security adjustments exactly?
    • She thought that she and Celestia could deal with it themselves, Celestia ignored her and did it her own way instead. Luna has issues with being ignored and was unamused by Shining Armor's little game.

     9.05 The Point of No Return 
  • Why is nopony aware that Twilight Sparkle was the one who never returned the book, until she tells them? Surely the library would record the borrower's name whenever a book is checked out. The fact that the book wasn't returned was noticed and ruined Dusty Pages' perfect record, but nopony thought to check who the book had been lent to?
    • Perhaps Dusty was so used to Twilight's perfect record that she didn't bother to record it the normal way when she checked books out? Course, unless she did this to multiple borrowers then she should have known it was Twilight by process of elimination. On the other hand, perhaps her revelation of freedom from perfection simply was more important than figuring it out.
    • As for her successors, they probably forgot about it, otherwise, they would've sent Twilight a note or something.
      • Twilight moving to Ponyville presumably happened well before the book's due date, and we know from the incident with Moondancer that she never bothered informing anypony in Canterlot of this. It's possible that they did try to contact her, but their notes never reached her because nopony knew her new address. After a while, they probably just gave up and wrote off the book as lost.
  • Why is Apple Rose at Silver Shores? Isn't there no family members to look after her? Given she was able to attend the Apple Family Reunion and is part of the Golden Girl ponies, I don't understand why she has to be in a retirement community.
    • Retirement homes are not prisons. She can still go out and have fun on her own terms. I wouldn't be surprised if she lived there voluntarily, maybe to meet other ponies her age?
    • Plus, comparing the amount of activities there are, and what kinds are available (wind surfing, playing in a band, a food fight meets paintball) with what we saw of her in "Grannies Gone Wild", this place seems like it'd be right up her alley. Heck, I'm in my early-mid 20s as of writing this and I'd love to live there!
  • Why on Earth would Twilight take a book out of the library without even reading it? You’d think that a pony as obsessed with books as her would’ve at least looked at the title before checking it out.
    • It's been implicitly years. She probably forgot the title in that timeframe, and when she saw it, she only thought "overdue library book" and paid no attention to the other details of it.
    • Also it's implied that she took the book not long before she found out about Nightmare Moon's threat, and you know that if Twilight Sparkle becomes obsessed about something, everything else blacks out. Being sent to Ponyville didn't help much either, since she litterally left everything behind. In short, even if she wanted to read that book, the pilot came and made her forget everything.

     9.06 Common Ground 
  • Ok, what is this nonsense about Qibble Pants trying to make Wind Spirit forget about her first dad? Quibble didn't say anything negative about him or said anything even close to "forget Dad". Is this really the best justification she could come up with as to why she doesn't like him?
    • You know, it's a very common fear amongst kids who lost one of their parents and the other one started a new relationship. Even though it wasn't the case, she felt that it was, and that seems enough for a reason.

     9.07 She's All Yak 
  • This episode seems like Discordant Harmony 2.0 which is not a bad thing, but why is Fluttershy going along with making Yona fit in when she wanted Discord to be himself instead of trying to be normal?
    • In Discord's case, trying to be normal was literally killing him. Very different circumstance. Also, disconnecting the different species from the issue, wanting to wash and dress up for a fancy event isn't a bad thing, nor is wanting to learn how to dance or bring something for what's basically a potluck dinner. Only thing you can really argue against is trying to change her speech, but that alone wouldn't have set off alarm bells.
    • The ponies also mention they never intended to try and make Yona into something she wasn't, they were just trying to help her to be ready for the dance. They didn't realize how seriously Yona was taking everything.
    • They were simply doing what she asked them to do for her, they didn’t say you can’t act like your yak-ish self. That was all on her feeling like she needed to act like a pony. If she had admitted her insecurities they’d have assured her that she just needed to be herself.

     9.08 Frenemies 
  • Did Grogar really have to bind the three to a wall instead of zip their mouths like last time? He is basically begging for them to betray him.
    • He doesn't want them to like him, he's made it clear from the start that his idea of working together means he is in charge. Plus its not like being kind would work any better on the trio, and appealing to force when he loses patience is probably all he knows.
    • Not only that, but as shown during "A Better Way to be Bad", each of them wish to call the shots to some extent. Constant, repeated reminders that he far surpasses them in power are probably the only reason they didn't immediately turn on him as soon as the episode was over. Yes, unbeknownst to him they now plan to, but they know they can't just attack him and be done with it.
  • Grogar has a magic ball that can see everything like the defeat of the 3 (would be 4 if Sombra didn't die or resist him) villains. How did the ball not reveal the 3 villains mission (let alone their plot against him.)
    • The fact that it took him so long to find the bell suggests that the magic shield and winds around the mountain interfered with his ability to observe the area.
  • In relation to the above, The 3 villains know full well about the ball. They witnessed him use it with their own eyes and Grogar specifically told them that he has been watching them. Even if the ball couldn't see the betrayal coming, why didn't they stop to think that they might be watched? They also know that Grogar's power is greater than any of theirs (and were even used on them) so did they really expect Grogar to be so easily fooled?
    • As mentioned above, that it took him so long to find the bell suggests that the magic shield and winds around the mountain interfered with his ability to observe the area, and the three other villains likely took note of this.
  • Why is it when Grogar is tricked into believing that the 3 failed their mission, his reaction is to blast through the wall instead of using his powers on them as a reminder not to fail again? He had no problem with muddling and binding them for arguing so if he didn't think being a Mean Boss would backfire then, why would he think that now?
    • He doesn't know why they (supposedly) failed. For all he knows, Mount Everhoof was really that impassible that even their combined skills couldn't do it. Threats of punishment for incompetence are one thing, threats of punishment over outside factors are far less likely to inspire loyalty. With his main source of power still out of reach for all he knows, better play it safe.
    • Because he's so angry that his magic just manifests as a powerful blast. Magic has been stated to be influenced by emotion, and Grogar likely knows this. He doesn't care about mistreating the other three, but he doesn't want them injured, because then they would be useless to him.
    • There's also the fact that while they failed they mentioned they did learn to work together, which is what he's been wanting them to do since he brought them there.
  • Beyond kids show that limits on screen murder, why is it when the pony guard announces he's okay for being buried in show by them, they don't go to kill him. They are irredeemably evil (at least for now) villains and I'm sure they wouldn't want any witnesses that could rat their plan out to the heroes.
    • A: Cozy Glow probably filled them in and pointed out that he doesn't often converse with other Ponies, so the odds of him ratting them out are low. B: An isolated pony emerging from the mountains babbling about Cozy Glow, Tirek, and Chrysalis being back? That probably won't go as well as you might think. Either way, they probably decided he was a non-threat.
    • None of the trio seem all that concerned about keeping their presence secret. The ponies already know Chrysalis is out there, and if they ever check Tartarus then they will know Tirek and Cozy are too. Given the ponies presumably have no idea where Grogar is or how to find his lair, them knowing enemies are out there won't effect much (its not like they have a good record of preparing for threats even when they know they are out there).
  • When the 3 villains talk to each other about their attacks against the Mane Six, they mention Discord turning good. But why not also mention Nightmare Moon, Starlight, and Tempest Shadow?
    • Discord was the only one they admired. They likely didn't even know of Starlight or Tempest while they were villains, and they never saw Nightmare Moon at work. Also, I'm sorry, but this question is bizarre. What rule says that when you state an example, you have list all others? If a group of people are talking about George Washington, who would demand to know why they're not also mentioning Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln?
    • Nightmare Moon accomplished nothing of not, Tempest was a pawn who turned good, and only a handful of ponies know what Starlight even did. Plus Chrysalis HATES Starlight, nobody's going to say anything nice about her during their bonding moment.
  • When Chrysalis impersonates Twilight to mock her, her voice remains the same, but in any other case, including when Chrysalis impersonated Cadance, their voices change into the originals just like their appearances. What?
    • It's certain Chrysalis could imitate Twilight's voice if she wanted to. She just didn't put in the effort in this case. Why? Maybe she prefers the sound of her own voice. Maybe she thought it would be funnier. Maybe she got caught up in the moment and forgot. Maybe some combination of all of those.
    • She might have lost some of her abilities and skills, including voice impersonation, due to starvation (she says she hasn't eaten love in a while) or insanity (she still talks to a log).
    • Of course, there is the Doylist explanation of her using her own voice, namely not bothering Tara Strong just for two lines.
  • Why, why, why did the three bring Grogar's bell to his lair instead of hiding it on the way there, or going off the path to hide it? It just makes it more likely that Grogar is going to find it, gain back all his powers, and realize the other plan to betray him.
    • He evidently can't sense the bell's presence (given how long it took him to find it) and they may have reasoned that his own lair is the last place Grogar would ever look for it. Even then it's poorly hidden, most likely just to make it easy to show the viewer that its there.
    • They probably want to keep an eye on it themselves, both to learn how to use its power and just for security purposes. Hiding it somewhere outside the lair not only increases the odds of some random stumbling upon it, but if they want to keep an eye on it, they'd have to keep leaving the lair and going to the hiding spot, which could easily arouse Grogar's suspicion. Keeping it in the lair makes it far easier to keep under watch, right under Grogar's nose.
  • What is the deal with Tirek's voice? In the season 4 finale, it was shown that as he grew, his voice deepened. In this episode, there is a part where he is in his third form, and he still has the same voice as his first two forms. Did the writers just forget about his voice or are they unwilling to do the effort of making his voice sound different for just one scene?
    • Either case is possible. This is the same series that dropped Chrysalis' Voice of the Legion type voice after the season 2 finale and made Sombra sound more pompous and arrogant in this season than he was in season 3.
    • To give a Watsonian explanation, it's possible that Chrysalis lost her Legion voice between seasons because she was so starved for energy (remember that she had been feeding on Shining Armor's love for weeks, to the point that it put her on par with Celestia's power), and you could apply similar reasoning to Tirek. In his first appearance, he had drained the life force of dozens if not hundreds of ponies to reach his curved-horns stage, whereas now he had only absorbed magic from two beings (Grogar and Chrysalis). It's possible that while the magic he had gained was massive in quantity, it was extremely limited in scope, and unless he were to absorb say Discord's magic all in one go, his voice wouldn't change much to match his body.
  • Did Tirek have to keep that hole in the shield open the whole time? Couldn't he have just let it close and reopen it once Cozy returned with the bell? It would have been a lot safer since he wouldn't have had to risk running out of power before Cozy got back. (As it was, it was a very near miss.)
    • Cozy yells that if he lets it close she'd be trapped forever. It's possible that magic (or at least Tirek's magic which is gained by siphoning the magic of others) works similar to electric light bulbs. There's a small power surge at start-up that then steadies out as it remains on. Considering how he only had some magic from Grogar and Chrysalis, it's likely they were afraid that if he tried opening the hole multiple times, he would run out of magic more quickly than if he just left it open for the short time it took her to retrieve the bell.

     9.09 Sweet and Smoky 
  • Ember claims it's her first time being in charge of watching the eggs. There have been two Hearth's Warming centered episodes since she became the Dragon Lord, and one of them showed that one Hearth's Warming had already passed since the Changelings reformed, so it's been well over two years since she became the Dragon Lord. How is she just now being made to watch over eggs for the first time? Is mating really that rare for dragons?
    • They live for thousands of years, and are almost indestructible. If they bred like humans, there'd be a lot more of them.
    • Infrequent egg laying is further supported by how until now we've never seen a dragon as young or younger than Spike.
  • Why couldn't they just wait until the lava heated the nests back up as opposed to using dragon breath? Spike's egg went far longer without lava heat and hatched just fine.
    • Because the lava pool had been drained enough that the grounds wouldn't heat up enough. They'd have to wait for it to refill (and who knows how long that would take) to get the grounds back to proper warmth. We also don't know how dragon development works, maybe they only develop when properly heated? Spike was hatched by a powerful surge of magic so we don't even know what it did. Also for all we know Spike was near death when he was hatched, Celestia doesn't know enough about hatching dragons to be able to tell, she even considered the test unpassable, and Spike surviving so long doesn't mean every egg could survive that long.
    • Considering heat from laugh fire ended up hatching the eggs, it's possible any sufficiently high heat could let the eggs survive. Maybe Spike's egg was kept in an incubator until right when it was brought out for the test.

     9.10 Going to Seed 
  • The reason the other Mane Six are out of the story is because they're busy with the School of Friendship. So how did Applejack get time off?
    • Maybe she got the necessary time off, since they know apple harvesting is important for both the Apples and Ponyville. And this one is special.
      • Her booking several days off in a row is likely why all the others are too busy to help, somebodies got to cover her classes while she's busy.
  • Why does Applejack think the Great Seedling is an old mare's tale? You'd think after at least 3 instances of "mare's tales" turning out to be true, ponies would know not to tempt fate.
    • My best guess is that she only ever heard the legend from family members, not from an outside source. That way, it wouldn't be hard to assume they made the whole thing up.
  • Was any explanation given for the apple trails?

     9.12 The Last Crusade 
  • One of the reason Scootaloo's parents wanted her to move is King Sombra's attack. Why didn't they move her sooner after all the other times the locals been attacked throughout the series prior? Scootaloo was at the epicenter of at least half of them.
    • The Elements/Tree of Harmony were still around back then. Note they state that the destruction of the tree is the other reason they decided to move her.
    • But the the Tree was revived stronger than ever and the Mane Six gained the Elements power without the physical Elements, so how's that still a problem? The Tree wasn't even widely known about before it was destroyed (Chrysalis and Sombra had to find it), so it wasn't a factor before.
      • Do they even know the tree revived, or if it's revived form has done anything other than be the Young Six's hangout? They gained their power but even though they used it to defeat Sombra, defeating him did not bring back the tree. Just because the two villains had to find the tree doesn't mean it's not widely known (And nopony is going to tell 2 obviously evil creeps where the location of their most powerful relic is).
    • Alternately, the parents were thinking of moving while these threats were having with Sombra being the final straw. The real question is why this was the time they decided to move with Scootaloo instead of the Storm King's invasion.
      • Because the Storm King's invasion was in Canterlot, not Ponyville.
  • Where were Kettle Corn, Rumble, Thunderlane when all the others the CMC helped show up? All the others from "Marks and Recreation" show up despite not even having names. And why was Twist there? What CMC related shenanigans has she been involved in?
    • In the Ponyville Mysteries books, which are canon as they first showed Scootaloo's family, they cured her from transforming into a timberwolf.
    • Thunderlane's probably busy being a Wonderbolt, and Rumble might be hanging with him. Not sure about Kettle Corn though.
  • I don't want to cry "Retcon" but how else can we reconcile Scootaloo's upbringing as revealed here with how it was implied to be in Parental Glideance? Neither her parents nor her aunts seem like ponies that would give an environment where one "never thought I could be the best at anything because no one ever told me." Further, Scootaloo shows zero angst over being separated from her parents so much and is extremely supportive of their work, despite her previously saying she wished she had parents like Rainbow Dash.
    • You can love your parents as they are and still wish for a parental aspect that they lack. In this case, it's being present to support her through her rough patches. Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but her aunts don't seem to be around 24/7 either; they mention moving to Ponyville permanently so Scootaloo can live with them after her old house was sold, their presence at the beginning seemed to be a brief visit, and they appear to live out of the way when Scootaloo ran away to live with them. She's probably alone a lot of the time, hence the lament that no-one ever told her she could be the best at anything, because no-one was around to do so.
      • That's the thing though, even if they weren't around much they and her aunts appear like they would have been plenty supportive when they were around (indeed, it seemed like they would if anything try to overcompensate for lost time). And yet Scootaloo said no pony "ever" was that supportive of her when she was growing up.
      • WHEN she was growing up, as in past tense. She's grown now. This the present time and the parents and aunts had enough time to develop. We don't know how they were prior to the start of the show or how they learned due to the CMC's influence. The fact still remains that if they were supportive enough of her, they wouldn't have been absent from her life that much and the parents wouldn't have talked about them moving her away from Ponyville without realizing how she would feel about it, which actually proves Scootaloo's claim in PG right.
      • Maybe Scootaloo understands they have valid reasons they aren't there for her such she has no ill-will against them despite wishing they were there more.
  • Why would Scootaloo's parents have a child if their careers meant they were too busy to be there for them?
    • Maybe they had her before the job was assigned to them?
    • People don't always plan their lives out that well. Scootaloo may have been an accidental pregnancy, or maybe they thought at least one of them would be able to spare the time, but they were just lying to themselves. It's made pretty clear that for all their "awesomeness", Scootaloo's parents are very flawed ponies who don't have a lot of skills in childrearing, and probably aren't very good at foresight or planning overall. (They did accidentally release that cragadile into a classroom full of children. What does that tell you?)

     9.17 Summer Sun Setback 
  • So Tirek's part of the trio's plot is to steal magic from several earth ponies in secret. How is it that the Mane Six's conclusion of what is going on is that the food is making them sick? Shouldn't there be some suspicion that their eyes and posture when lying weakened on the ground look exactly like how ponies do under the effects of Tirek's Magic Drain?
    • I don't think we were ever told that the glassy eyes was visible to ponies or unique to Tirek's energy drain. And since he didn't drain them to the point of losing their Cutie Marks, all any pony saw was ponies for no apparent reason suddenly feeling weak, which would normally equate to some kind of illness.
  • 1) How is that the guard pony that sees Cozy Glow not recognize her? Even if you could argue that he wasn't one of the guards that confronted and imprisoned her, shouldn't there be public description and warning? There is absolutely no way that Cozy's actions would be swept under the rug and at this point, the threats have been well known than ever or at least should be. 2) Come to think of it this is now the 17th episode of season 9 and Grogar teleported Tirek and Cozy out of Tartaurus towards the beginning of the season premiere, so is security in Tartaurus so lax that their disappearance would go unnoticed for that long? You'd think Cerebus would've learned after the last two fiascos (Tirek's escape and his secret contact with Cozy during season 8).
    • 1. Information sharing seems to overall be REALLY bad in Equestria, even for major events. Just look at how long it took for the average pony to even know who Twilight was (or for another example, how Daring Do can be considered a fictional character in most of Equestria simply because she does her heroics in a part of Equestria that doesn't sell her books). The stuff with Cozy may not have been swept under the rug so much as most ponies didn't care to find out what she looked like once the situation was resolved.
    • 2. Cerberus seems to only stop you from walking out of Tartarus (if he sees you do it) and doesn't actually keep count of prisoners and such. He is after all just a big dog. And given how Tartarus is lacking in means to feed the prisoners, give them water, etc. (and the ponies remarking on how they will spend eternity there if they can't get out) it can be assumed that there is some kind of power in the cave that keeps you alive. The ponies thus don't seem to need to check in on Tartarus much at all. This would explain too why no one realized Tirek escaped back when Cerberus ran off in an earlier season. Its a awfully poor system, but the ponies seems to be really bad at security in general (just look at how long it took them to give Canterlot Castle even relatively decent security). Its almost like some kind of cultural/species flaw for them.
  • Is there any explanation of the Series Continuity Error regarding the absence of the cutie marks when Tirek drained the earth ponies and Discord's inability to sense his prescence like last time?
    • If one were to theorize it would be because Tirek was holding back how much energy he took, so as to not remove the Cutie Marks (which would tell ponies that they were not simply getting sick). Likewise, stealing smaller amounts of energy may have made it more difficult for Discord to detect, especially since he was not actively trying to sense anything (yes, he sensed the transfer of magic to Twilight without trying, but that was a massive amount of magic).
    • Also, who said Discord didn't notice? It's perfectly within character for him to withhold information. For all we know Discord knows exactly what's going on with Grogar and the other villains and is just keeping it to himself so the Mane Six can take care of it themselves, like he did with Sombra. He IS the spirit of Chaos after all, doing things the straightforward and easy way is against his nature.
  • The end of the episode, Cozy Glow talks about the easiness of turning earth ponies, pegasi, and unicorns against each other. When did the three races turn on each other? Onscreen there was no war against the three races, but instead their distraction includes Tirek making his magic drain on earth ponies look like poison from their own food, Chrysalis disguising herself as a unicorn to trick other unicorns into stepping down, and Pegasus Cozy Glow secretly causing weather problems that other pegasi are forced to deal with. How is the three races turning on themselves the same as turning on each other?
    • They seemed to be using "turn on each other" very loosely. Chrysalis did turn the fireworks unicorns against other ponies by convincing them they were too good to perform for others, and the chaos the trio caused seemed to inhibit the ponies working together until Twilight organized everyone. Still it could have been worded better, like perhaps instead say "how easy it was to manipulate the ponies into near disaster" or something like that.
  • How exactly did Twilight learn to stop freaking out so quickly when the previous episode showed at her absolute worst (deliberately screwing Pinkie Pie over just to win a trivia contest)?
    • The previous episode is the first time her freak outs have had real potential consequences, she nearly damaged her relationship with Pinkie Pie. She also got a good look in the mirror from Sunburst doing the same thing to her. Those together likely shocked some sense into her.

     9.18 She Talks To Angel 
  • The solution Fluttershy proposes to solve the problem of predators trying to eat the prey at the shelter is to have the predators only eat vegetables while at the Sanctuary. Issues of forcing wolves and snakes to go vegan aside, half of the Mane Six have obligate carnivores as pets—Applejack, Rarity, and Pinkie Pie. I doubt those three send their pets to hunt live prey (and Gummy couldn't, being toothless), so odds are commercial pet foods for carnivorous pets exist just like in our world. Couldn't Fluttershy have gotten some of that in bulk to feed the carnivorous Sanctuary inhabitants? It might not be perfect for them, but it'd be better.
  • Why does Anton the python want to eat Muriel the baby elephant, of all animals? Elephants aren't exactly a python's natural prey.
    • Rule of Funny for the eventual baby-elephant-sized bulge in the snake's stomach? Real snakes don't chew or eat cookies either after all.
  • How does Fluttershy not know that non-prey diets are harmful to predators? She looks after animals for a living and has done so for who knows how long so she should know better than that.

     9.19 Dragon Dropped 
  • Why don't Rarity and Gabby recognize each other? In her debut, Gabby cleaned the floors of Carousel Boutique in full view of Rarity. Yet both act like this is their first time meeting each other.
    • Not everyone remembers people they met once months or even years ago.
  • Why doesn't Rarity just go and ask Smolder for help with a few things that Spike's done? Such as tasting gems, since she is, after all, a dragon as well, and I'm sure she would be able to tell ripe gems from not so ripe gems.
    • Because it's not just Spike's help she misses, it's Spike himself, and on some level she understands that. She doesn't have that kind of friendly relationship with Smolder, no reason to believe that Smolder would want to help her, and there's the fact that Rarity is Smolder's teacher and asking her to help Rarity's business for no pay might be considered unethical.

     9.20 A Horse Shoe In 
  • Why is Grampa Gruff suddenly so uninterested in Gallus' progress when Gabby stated in "Dragon Dropped" that he demanded regular updates from him via mail?
    • He seemed more focused on the aspect of having to go to Ponyville himself, as well as the idea of him directly encouraging Gallus.
  • Why would Starlight choose Spoiled Rich as a potential candidate for vice-headmare? It was made obvious during the substitute teaching trial that she only cared about bits and not about the students.
    • As Starlight noted, any pony was welcome to try out. She had to at least let Spoiled try one round rather than judge her completely by a casual remark made before the testing even started.
    • 1. Spoiled was on the Ponyville school board, making her the only candidate with actual academic credentials. 2. It would be hypocritical of Starlight not to give Spoiled a chance for her past wrongs as they're a fraction of Starlight's own. 3. Was Starlight aware of Spoiled's nature prior? The last time Spoiled did anything antagonistic was "Crusaders of the Lost Mark" before Starlight would have known of her.

     9.21 Daring Doubt 
  • If Ahuizotl is actually Good All Along, then why does he gloat and laugh like a typical supervillain, even in real life?
    • It could be a joyous laughter whenever he believes that after a series of failure, he managed to keep an artifact safe.
    • He does try to lampshade that he gets called a monster a lot and admits to being overly violent, etc.

     9.22 Growing Up Is Hard to Do 
  • Adult Scootaloo's wings are still the size of a foals, finally subverting Informed Deformity by showing her small wings are the reasons she can't fly. But then how is Bulk Biceps, who has the same foal sized wings and far more bulk working against him, able to fly?
    • Where was it ever stated the wing size had anything to do with her inability to fly? Plus unlike Bulk who is an actually grown up pony, Scootaloo (as well as the other two) is merely transformed into a grownup pony and as is the point of the episode, this doesn't make them less children or more experienced.
      • Back in the episode "Flight to the Finish" I recall Scootaloo expressing concern about what if her wings "never grow in" suggesting that wing size has some effect. That said, we see plenty of pegasi smaller than Scootaloo fly with tiny wings, so it may be more that her having small wings as an adult is a side effect of a nonvisual deformity (like something is off about whatever internal magic allows pegasi to fly) rather than the actual cause of her not being able to fly.
    • Flight is explicitly a magical ability, that's why Tirek was able to steal it from them, so wing size means little. Bulk just has stronger and Scootaloo has weaker magical abilities than your average Pegasus.
  • Did anypony stop to think the Crusaders showed themselves to be fully aware that they were taking on a serious responsibility with that magic flower? (Just not how deep a responsibility.) That they knew aging themselves for the sake of an event was a double-edged sword? And did anypony seem to get that "desperate times desperate measures" was their stock in trade during their years as blank flanks?
    • They had no idea that the flower would do that to them until it happened; they were just griping out loud when they were wishing to be older, not realizing that the wish would be granted. Once they realized what happened to them, they just decided to capitalize on it, not knowing what they were getting themselves into. Once Twilight figured out the flower's secret, she immediately realized that the Crusaders had used it, even if she got their exact wish wrong.

     9.23 The Big Mac Question 
  • While the absence of Sugar Belle's family falls under Fridge Horror, what about her cousin mention in "The Break Up Break Down" who she's on at least speaking terms with or Starlight Glimmer who's in the same town as the wedding?
    • The point of Sugar's cousin was to watch the store while she was away which would be the case here. And just because Sugar forgave Starlight doesn't necessarily make them close enough to warrant (only a handful of the Apple's were present).

     9.24 & 9.25 The Ending of the End 
  • When the Villainous Trio have Starlight and the Mane Five locked up in the changeling cages, why do not they not drain their magic? Sure, you could argue that while they were surrounded by the rock, they had no magic to drain, but what was stopping them from simply grabbing one of them, pulling them away from the rock, then draining them using either the bell or Tirek's Mana Drain? It would certainly have stopped Starlight from breaking everyone out, and even if she hadn't, more magic is always better than less.
    • Either they grabbed the Villain Ball and wanted to gloat by showing they were no threat with their magic, or after seeing how absorbing Discord's magic backfired they decided to not risk biting off more than they could chew. For Tirek in particular, the other two could have told him to refrain from absorbing more magic that would make him more powerful than them, probably out of fear he'd try to betray them like Cozy Glow tried to with Discord's magic, and he agreed to maintain the alliance for the time being. (It could have been on his bucket list for once they won and divided the kingdom.)
    • And Tirek already knows that stealing their magic did nothing to stop them from winning against him the last time. He's the one who thinks the Mane Six only won by dumb luck.
  • I didn't have a problem with the Grogar is Discord twist, other than being spoiled too early. What I don't get however is why Discord never checked his crystal ball at least once in a while, or carried an extra one with him so that his plan with them wouldn't have backfired so easily?
    • Because Discord's Fatal Flaw is his gigantic ego and inability to think things through long term. Discord was far too sure of himself to anticipate he might actually lose control, which is a recurring problem for him.
      • Additionally, judging by his reaction to the bell's powers, he also didn't even know what Grogar's bell actually could do. Hence he is surprised when it is used and he ends up with no magic. Like some of his other defeats, Discord still suffers from a invincibility complex that leads him to disregard the idea that anything could be a threat to him or that he is not always in control of a situation.
    • The crystal ball likely doesn't actually have any power of it's own. Discord himself has clairvoyant powers, the ball just let him use them in front of the villains without giving away his identity.
  • When the Windigos return, Chrysalis wants to let them cause so much trouble that she would "save" the ponies from them in exchange for giving her the kingdom to rule. Why would she think this would work? This relies on A) the ponies completely forgetting how she attacked Canterlot once and captured Equestria's protectors and rulers twice, and B) assumes that the Windigos won't freeze them to death before she can.
    • Something that's been made fundamentally clear about Chrysalis is that she's... kind of an idiot. Even all the way back to her premiere appearance in "A Canterlot Wedding," the first thing she does after Twilight decides she was wrong was reveal to her that all of her suspicions about Cadance were correct. Time-after-time she's made bad decisions, only ever getting anywhere because she had her Hive to do the heavy lifting. She's so arrogant and narcissistic that if she hadn't been lucky enough to be born a Queen larva (or however royalty is decided for changelings), she likely would have never gotten anywhere as a soldier.
      • Chrysalis isn't exactly an idiot, she does come up with some pretty solid plans that actually work out for the most part. That being said, she does suffer from a big case of Bond Villain Stupidity. Every time in the show when she actually had the heroes in her grasp, she decides to go on a self-indulgent monologue or something similar instead of just killing them outright, and every time that happened her plans blew up in her face.
    • Chrysalis's biggest flaw is that she's a narcissist. She's incredibly smart, but can't resist a chance to stroke her own ego and make herself look good.
  • Why didn't the pirates or reformed Storm Creatures from the movie assist the others in battle? Tempest, Novo, and Skystar did.
    • It's possible they did, and we just didn't see them. That Calvary line was already massive. To try to shove every single ally they have in there would just become overkill after a while.
    • Also, the focus was on recruiting from the races that attend the School of Friendship. No one likely has any way of rapidly reaching the nomadic pirates for instance.
  • Also, why doesn't Scorpan appear to help at any point. After all, his brother is part of the Legion. Would it not have made a better impact if he joined the pillars attempt to stop Tirek, or in the final battle where he can have another role in the villain's final defeat?
    • Jim Miller said in a postmortem Q&A on Twitter that there were no plans for Scorpan to make an appearance because the finale was already packed with characters as it was. So while it would've made sense, there was probably no realistic way of fitting him in.
  • How can Tirek's Freudian Excuse for stealing magic be out of never living up to his father, when the Fiendship is Magic comics just showed that King Vorak does not condone such an act to the point of banishing the one that taught him the Magic Drain in the first place?
    • Discord just wanted to get under Tirek's skin in order to provoke him into firing a laser blast at him. Likely he doesn't really know or care what Tirek's father thinks of him. He just needed something to break Starlight out with.
    • That's exactly the point. He could never really get his father's approval, so he went with the magic absorption route just to feel better. Vorak still wouldn't approve his actions so it's not like he lost anything by trying that.
    • Keep in mind that the comics are technically a separate continuity that the writers at DHX had absolutely no input on. So while the comics try to take events from the show into account, nothing that happens in the comics (up to and including the Fiendship is Magic backstories) is considered part of the show's canon.
    • You're misunderstanding what Discord said. Tirek takes magic to make himself stronger and feel better about himself because he feels he can't get his father's approval on his own. It's entirely about making Tirek feel better, not about whether his father would actually approve.
  • So Celestia is gravely shocked that Discord would cause so much trouble just as a "test" for Twilight yet she herself had the idea for the Mane Six to free Discord to reform him and was happy that he had made the Grand Galloping Gala less boring with his antics. Yeah... should she really be surprised?
    • Celestia's penchant for being a hypocrite has been well-noted by the fandom for years now. But to give her the benefit of the doubt, her plans for having them reform Discord had mostly worked out (minus the season four finale, but even then he was integral in getting Twilight her Key), and her wish to have the Mane Six ruin the Gala, while certainly conniving and rude to the other guests, wasn't anywhere near the same level as literally almost dooming the entire continent to ruin.
    • The objection from Celestia and the others wasn't so much that this was "unexpected" behavior from Discord, and more that it was a shockingly bad idea even by his standards. It was hinted in the season premiere that Discord had fully taken on the mantle of Trickster Mentor when he faked being wounded by Sombra so the Mane Six could finish him off themselves. With that in mind, Discord apparently thought the best way to give Twilight the push she'd need to take that final step of growth was to have three of the worst villains Equestria had to offer attack her. While the Princess' are preoccupied with the transfer of power. Oh and without once considering the Legion of Doom might seek to betray him and take his power for themselves. So the annoyance from the ponies wasn't because they didn't see this coming, it was because Discord Didn't Think This Through even by his standards. It may have sounded like a good idea in his head, but to quote Leonard; "Every idea is better than this idea."
    • I'm pretty sure the problem is not that he tried to test Twilight, but that the problem was how he wanted to test her. Especially the ordeal about Grogar's Bell.
    • The differences is when the Princesses used Sombra to test Twilight (the one think we know for sure was a test), Sombra was a threat they've defeated before and could do again if they needed to intervene and save the day. But realistically they likely wouldn't have been so upset with Discord of his plan have actually worked.
    • And in Celestia's test for Twilight, she only used one villain, not four of them (and later three).
    • In adition to the above, while Celestia did use Sombra as a test Celestia didn't set him loose to begin with. There's a difference between using a danger that already exists as a test and creating that danger yourself.
    • Actually, we now have Word of God that it was Celestia who freed Nightmare Moon at the start of the series (they're no longer involved in the show, but they were at the time). And if the differences was Discord's plan failed, we've seen Celestia's plan could have failed as well. So why wouldn't Discord call her out on this if he was defensive about it at the time? Any explanations for this beside Characterization Marches On for Celestia since?
      • Because it's not canon anymore. While it may have been the original intent it was not established on the actual show during her run and therefore doesn't count. Even she herself has said as much.

  • When Cozy Glow attacks the Royal Guard, why did she portal them away as opposed to blasting them (besides censorship)? She tried to blast the main characters immediately afterward and after capturing them argued they immediately eliminate them, so why not on the Guards?
    • I don't think she cares how she defeats her foes. She is just showing her new powers that she just got from the bell.
    • She just wanted them out of the way ASAP. In fact, it was more pragmatic than blasting them - as blasts have often been blocked, dodged, etc., throughout the series.
  • Two things about the Windigos. 1) How did the three types get fooled so easily when the Hearths Warming story about the founding of Equestria explicably stated that the Windigos are the result of their antagonism towards each other? 2) Why did the Windigos show up anyway when they appeared last time because the three tribes were actively fighting each other, not just them going their separate ways?
    • 1. Many ponies don't believe the Windigos were real, and by the time they showed up most were too scared to think straight about harmony stopping them, etc. We see the basic initial response of the ponies to crisis was "the Mane Six need to fix this, we can't do anything." 2. Note that the former pony lands froze over simply due to amount of disharmony. The ponies didn't have to actively be fighting each other, the sheer amount of negative emotions were enough to attract and feed the Windigos. The Windigo remained hidden in the clouds until near the end of the episode, showing up in full view for no apparent reason other than perhaps to speed up the freezing. Perhaps in this episode they opt to be visible from the start in order to freeze Equestria and gain power more quickly (perhaps they wanted to quickly get stronger in case Tirek and the others tried to stop them).
  • So Chrysalis' part of the plan is to use her Crackle Cosette disugise to fool ponies of all three races into thinking they're against each other. Seems to make enough sense considering her aptitude for manipulation except for one little detail. Why didn't anyone think to investigate this and try to confirm whether or not she was being honest only to eventually denounce her as a liar? Furthermore, why would they just immediately believe that without a second thought when Equestria's liable to regain its peace anytime pandemonium ensues thanks to the Mane Six and various ponies have interacted with each other before without any such issue whatsoever?
    • Part of the answer is that her actions alone were not the whole plan. Cozy was also spreading chaos, and Tirek was wiping out crops and causing other damage to spread unease among the ponies and give some credence to claims that food was being hoarded and such (that is, if a earth pony farmer loses most of their crop then they're going to keep what they have left to feed themselves). Thus the big question becomes how all this went on without Twilight or any authorities catching on that something bigger was happening (Twilight chastises herself for not noticing, but we get no real explanation for how she didn't notice).
    • Another part of the answer is that throughout the series, the majority of ponies have shown a substantial "herd mentality" when in stressful or negative situations, and quite a bit of naivety that links to a tendency to believe what they are told and to align themselves with their own type of pony for the sake of self preservation. It may well be simply ingrained in their equine instincts and something they will always have to struggle with even as they better themselves. It was even lampshaded by the villains earlier in the season just how easy it was to turn the different pony types against each other.
  • Why couldn't Discord have one of his clones pose as Grogar or create a manifestation of the real one? It would've not only allowed for him to throw off suspicion, but allow him to do his own thing, while still keeping an eye on any Starscream attempt.
    • We've never seen a Discord copy last for all that long, and there may well be other limits to them that we don't know about.
      • How long do they last? The Discord copies in Discordant Harmony didn't seem to be around that short of time.
  • Or better yet why not either free the real Grogar from his banishment if he's still alive or revive him like he did Sombra if he's dead?
  • Why wasn't Stygian called by The Pillars? He is clearly the tactical brains of the group. Even then, Starswirl knew about Tirek from the first time and should have known about his Mana Drain. Were the writers planning on putting the latter out of the equation as soon as possible and didn't even bother trying to hide it at this point by making them go Leeroy Jenkins and turning them into a massive let-down?
    • Stygian's use came from researching enemies. This was something they had to respond to quickly which would have left him no time to do so. And Star Swirl had apparently defeated Tirek singlehandedly so he had reason to be overconfident. ("Twilight's Kingdom" stated Scorpan befriended Star Swirl but warned the Princesses of Tirek, suggesting Star Swirl defeating him was a retcon/continuity error. This is only stated in the comics, did the episode state anything on the issue?)
    • In this very episode, there wasn't any interaction between Star Swirl and Tirek despite the former's friendship with being the reason Tirek lost the first time. This means either two things: 1) The situation was indeed as exactly stated in "Twilight's Kingdom", Star Swirl formed the friendship while the Princesses did the hard work while not bringing Star Swirl along, most likely to prevent him from being The Load should his magic get taken or 2) All three of them fought Tirek but by the time this episode aired, the new writer forgot or was out of the loop. Which comic issue had Star Swirl be the one to singlehandedly take down Tirek? As for the Stygian issue, remember that Twilight was only sure that Chrysalis will go after Starlight, so the matchups could go either way and have them face Cozy Glow instead. Not only that, we don't know how long was the duration between the call for help and the actual fight but we do know that it is long enough get their more remote members. This factor could possibly give Stygian time to formulate contingency plans for both Tirek and Cozy Glow with information from Twilight and company. Of course, from a meta perspective the most likely reason is much more sadder: The Pillars are the latest additions to the ranks of side characters whose sole purpose is getting kicked to the curb so that the spotlight will not be taken from the main characters, they had to grab the Idiot Ball in order for the Mane 6 to save the day again.
    • There wasn't time for strategy, Twilight was still giving her pep talk to her team when Cozy showed up and all the villains left at the same time so she didn't have much of a lead on them. Tirek simply turned out to be stronger than they were prepared to deal with. The small nugget of magic he got from Discord powered him up enough to drain Earth Ponies, even thought that took dozens or even hundreds of ponies the first time, and then he received a third of Grogar's stored magic. Nobody was ready for a foe that strong.
  • How did the Kirin know to join the final battle? They live in an isolated region of Equestria, and very few ponies even know they exist, raising the questions of who contacted them, and how they knew how to reach them.
    • Considering that 2 of the Friendship School teachers/National Equestrian heroes actually went to the Kirin's land by calling of the map, it's not much of a stretch that the region has since then become more well-known, even more so that the Kirin got their voices back.
  • Wouldn't it have been a lot easier for Discord to simply invert the personalities of Cozy Glow, Chrysalis and Tirek as he did to the Mane Six, except to make them good? It could've saved himself and all of Equestria a world of trouble.
    • The whole point was to set them up for Twilight to defeat them so she could gain confidence. Making them reform prior would defeat the purpose. And as "Discordant Harmony" showed, Discord using his powers to create order instead of chaos, which reforming them would likely fall under, would negate his existence.
      • I doubt Discord would be in any danger from inverting their personalities, it took him completely changing himself and his home and then leaving it that way for it to endanger him before. A single act won't do anything. However using his powers to change them would be wrong, changing who someone is has always been portrayed as a horrible thing plus the change would be artificial and reversible which would make it incredibly dangerous.
  • In light of the reveal that Grogar was Discord, something that doesn't seem to make sense is him not being suspicious of Tirek, Cosy Glow and Chrysalis having been in Canterlot during "The Summer Sun Setback", with Discord's remark at the end of that episode suggesting he knew they were there. So why didn't he, as Grogar, question their presence upon his return to the base?
    • Nothing Discord said or did suggested he knew they were there. He was just commending Twilight on resolving all the problems. There was no implication that he knew the villains were the cause of those problems.
    • Why would Discord even care? Why would Grogar? If he knew they were there, which is likely since he can sense when Tirek absorbs magic, he'd just assume they were stirring up trouble. Grogar never ordered them to stay where they were so there's no reason for him to pretend to be mad.
  • It was established in the season 4 and 9 finales that magic cannot simply disappear, that it needs to go somewhere. So what happened to all the magic (initially within Grogar's bell) that Chrysalis, Tirek and Cozy Glow used to power themselves up when they were de-powered?
    • Back to the real Grogar?
  • The villains arguing over the bell in part 2 suggested that Celestia and Luna's magic could not be separated from Discord's once it was in the bell. But following their defeat, both Pinkie and Discord were able to take his magic, and his magic alone, from the bell while keeping Celestia and Luna's separate. Considering the villains had stolen a book with instructions on how to use the bell, it seems odd that they would not know how to do this.
    • It's possible the magic has to be released in the order it was drained, which would mean they couldn't touch Celestia and Luna's magic without somepony taking Discord's first.
  • What would have been the fate of the Terrible Trio had they acted according to Discord's plan? Would they have still been turned to stone, or did Discord only decide on that because they double-crossed him?
    • The latter. If things had gone according to plan, presumably no-one would have ever learned of Discord's involvement, and their new punishment would be left up to Twilight and friends after they defeated them.
  • When it's time to escape their imprisonment, Discord, Celestia, Luna and the Pillars instead help Starlight in stalling the villain trio despite having no magic, meaning that they might as well just throw rocks like Discord. Celestia even says that even without magic they are not completely helpless despite the lack of evidence throughout the series. Did the bell drain their brains as well? Has it not occurred that without magic, they may not last long enough for the Mane 6 to escape?
    • Starlight still had all her magic, but more importantly, it was just a distraction, they don't need to have any chance of winning or last very long. All that matters is they hold the villains attention long enough for the others to escape.
    • In hindsight, I worded the earlier entry wrongly. I know that Starlight still has her magic. I was just wondering why the other heroes with no magic decide to stay and help her instead of escaping to the Crystal Empire or Castle of Friendship since they would just be dead weight. As quoted, while they don't need to "last very long", it may just not be "long enough for the others to escape." It might distract Starlight in stalling the villain trio, as she now has to keep an eye on her non-magical friends. Imagine a trio boss fight while you only have one fully functional party member out of 10 members and you have to make sure every single party member lasts for a certain period of time. Wouldn't the smarter idea would be only for her to stay while everyone else bails? The Mane 6 got lucky that the villains decided not to use the recaptured heroes as hostages.
    • Hostages wouldn't work, the whole point was that the others were buying time to escape, no matter what happened to them, as reuniting Twilight and the others was of maximum importance. If that meant sacrificing those left behind then that was the price to escape. Everyone who stayed behind knew the risks, death was a possibility but that was covered by Twilight's defiant speech at the end of the previous episode, it doesn't matter if they fall as others will take up the fight. The more of them who stay behind the more distractions there are for the villains and the longer it will take to capture them all again.

     9.26 The Last Problem 
  • What exactly caused Luster Dawn to believe that friendship is a waste of time? Besides just wanting to focus on her studies, did she have a bad experience with it? (i.e. have a friend that moved away and lost touch with)
    • It's supposed to echo what Twilight thought at the beginning of the series. She had good friends in Canterlot (as "Amending Fences" showed) but she ultimately thought they were of no importance compared to her magical studies.
    • Also, Luster up to that point had never seen Twilight with any of her friends other than Spike, and, coupled with hearing the story of how Twilight's coronation was a disaster, just assumed the worst and believed that they stopped being friends after she moved away.
    • Luster is also rather hung up on the idea that if a friendship isn't going to last your whole life, then it is inferior to knowledge or accomplishments that will last.
  • What happened to Luna's Dream Walker responsibilities? Rainbow Dash called dibs on it at the start of the season but that plot thread seems to have been forgotten. I'd assume Twilight Sparkle's doing it since Jim Miller stated Celestia and Luna transferred "the full measure of their power over the sun/moon" to Twilight, but given how exhausted just their duties left them in "A Royal Problem" how's Twilight able to do both?
    • Power over the moon =/= power over dreams, and since Luna said her responsibilities had dwindled, it's possible that things got so peaceful over Equestria that the only nightmares left were just random ones, not ones indicative of the psychological distress that Luna usually helps with. Considering that Equestria under Twilight's rule appears to be a Utopia, it's possible that nocreature suffers enough to have those kinds of nightmares, rendering Luna's former role redundant.
  • Why the connections from "The Magic of Friendship Grows". Pinkie Pie: Gilda (why not Rainbow?), Zecora (why Pinkie over the others?), Rose/Roseluck, Pipsqueak (when did they meaningly interact?). Fluttershy: Mayor Mare, Gabby, Lyra, Bon Bon, Nurse Redheart, Doctor Hooves (why Fluttershy over the others?). Pharynx, Featherweight, DJ Pon-3, Octavia (they've never interacted), Double Diamond, Night Glider, the Spa Ponies (why Rainbow over the others?). Applejack: Sweetie Belle, Scootaloo (why Applejack over Rarity and Rainbow?). Rarity: Berryshine/Berry Punch, Cheerilee, Diamond Tiara, Silver Spoon, Twist, Zippoorwhill (when did they meaningly interact?), Ember (why Rarity and not Twilight?). And what's with the absence of Rarity's parents, Lemon Hearts, Twinkleshine, Minuette (more interaction and importance than Nurse Redheart and Berryshine).
    • As far as I can tell, besides their family, their pets, their close friends, the pillar they originate from, and the student who inherited their element, the rest is pretty much random. And I don't see any problem with that.
    • Rather than split up the Cutie Mark Crusaders, they got kept together. And since the CMC formed because of Apple Bloom worry over not having a Cutie Mark, they got placed in Applejack's group.
  • When the Mane Six were the age of Pinkie's child, their parents didn't look as old as the Mane Six did in the Distant Finale. Some of them didn't even look that old in the present. So why make the Mane Six that old?
    • Presumably Pinkie had her kid later in life than her parents did. Keep in mind that once a pony is grown they continue to look much the same for many years, so its tough to tell how old they are if they haven't reached the "start to get wrinkles" stage.
  • While the rest of the Mane Six have visibly aged, Twilight hasn't and has all the signs she's become effectively immortal like Celestia. Does this contradict the prior Word of God that "Twilight will not outlive her friends"? (Jim Miller stated it doesn't count if it wasn't mentioned in-show, that they never thought about it, but all the special magic they've been exposed to might effect them somehow.)
    • The old Word of God could have meant "in the show". They've stated the show wouldn't consider killing off characters as it's not that kind of show. It could have referred to ending the show before if dealt with that which is what happened.
    • The Journal of the Two Sisters states Celestia and Luna's longevity was due to the connection with their respective celestial bodies. Maybe Twilight's longevity is connected to her friendships such it will stop once they pass on.
    • Related to the above, it could also be that while she will continue to look "young" on the outside, Twilight will still not live any longer than a normal pony.
  • How is it that Spike is so much more buff when it was obvious that he was much younger than Smolder? Yet, when we see Smolder in the song montage at the end on top of that tree, she seems to have barely grown all that much? I mean, she has grown a bit by the looks of it, but nowhere near as big as Spike.
    • People grow differently.
    • In terms of height, they look about identical, or at least close enough. Spike just got buffer than Smolder, probably because he's the one travelling far and wide, interacting with various potentially-hostile races, while Smolder is presumably just a professor at the School of Friendship.
  • How come Silverstream's teaching when in "Uprooted", she wanted to be part of the Wonderbolts? I'm sure since in the future, there's more peace and all that, the Wonderbolts would allow other creatures to join their team than only keeping it to Pegasi.
    • That was a dream, and a manipulated one at that. Also, Silverstream has expressed a desire to pursue many things; she's a very excitable person.
  • How is it that Luster hasn't heard of the Council of Friendship to begin with? Shouldn't that be a new topic taught in the school at Canterlot at the very least?
    • The way she said "And this is the Council of Friendship..." seemed to imply that she was already aware that it existed prior to this conversation. It was probably a subject that she took the bare minimum notes on to pass so she could focus on the topics she believed mattered far more than making friends.
  • Celestia and Luna are immortal Alicorns and have shown to really embrace an adventurous side. What made them to go to, of all places, Silver Shoals? What would be waiting for them in a retirement home?
    • Silver Shoals is simply a place, it's not just the retirement home. There's likely lots to do or see there.


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