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Tear Jerker / My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic - Season 1

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     Mare in the Moon 
  • Twilight, as she sees the prediction of Nightmare Moon's return unfolding before her, knowing exactly what is going to happen and being powerless to do anything to stop it. Just how scared and nervous she looks makes it hard not to feel sorry for her.
     Elements of Harmony 
  • From the viewpoints of the five ponies that Twilight had met that day. Their Princess has disappeared, Nightmare Moon has returned, Eternal Night is upon them — and the new pony that they had reached out to for their friendship knew exactly what was going to happen.
    • Rainbow Dash briefly accuses Twilight of being a spy. It's especially heartbreaking when you remember that during their last encounter, Rainbow looked forward to hanging out again. What's worse is that all of the accusations against Twilight are completely justified because she knew what was going on.
    • Rarity, Fluttershy, and Pinkie are quiet, but they're clearly having trouble deciding whether or not to trust Twilight.
    • Applejack fortunately lets Twilight explain her side of the story, (and all of the suspicions are dropped quickly afterwards) but you can tell from her face that even the farmpony wasn't going to leave without answers.
    • When the camera switches to Twilight's POV, we see how scared and confused everyone is. It's actually the first time in the series that we see Pinkie Pie look legitimately upset.
  • What happened after Nightmare Moon shatters the Elements Of Harmony, the only thing capable of stopping her, right in front of Twilight Sparkle then gives her a Breaking Speech. The look on Twilight's face makes it clear that, until she realizes that her friends are what she needs, she's crossed the Despair Event Horizon. Thank goodness her friends showed up.
  • Luna. Nightmare Moon looked like Celestia, only dark and evil. Then we see that she was in fact this small Alicorn (she doesn't seem to be bigger than Twilight). It's just for a second, but seeing her almost cowering when Celestia gets close and then crying "I'm so sorry! I missed you so much!" makes you start to think that she stayed in the Moon for a thousand years. All by herself.
    • This part:
    Luna: I'm so sorry! *nuzzles up to Celestia, crying Tears of Joy* I missed you so much big sister!
    Celestia: *returns the gesture, also crying* I missed you too..
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     The Ticket Master 
  • Applejack being the first one to realise how upset Twilight is and offering to take her name out of the running for the ticket. Remember, she was the only one who wanted the ticket for purely altruistic reasons, yet she's willing to give it all up to provide even the slightest bit of relief to her friend.
  • The Running Gag of Twilight not getting to eat anything throughout the episode may seem humorous and all, but imagine going through a whole day eating nothing. The audience does feel sorry for Twilight.
     Griffon the Brush-Off 
  • Fluttershy's reaction while Gilda picks on, and then roars at her for accidentally backing into her while helping a family of ducks cross.
  • Rainbow Dash in the end when Gilda loses it. All she wanted was for her old friend and her new friends to get along, and look what happened.
     Boast Busters 
  • Though a subtle example, when Snips and Snails talk about the most powerful pony in all Equestria, Twilight Sparkle is visibly bummed out, having been commended by Spike so much about her evolving magic, she seems disappointed to realize she isn't special.
  • Twilight's first sentence after "whooping" the Ursa Minor at the end of the episode:
    Twilight: I'm sorry. Please, please don't hate me!
     Look Before You Sleep 
  • It's kind of subtle, but Twilight Sparkle, who is effectively an adult pony, has never had a sleepover in her entire life. It really underscores how lonely her childhood must have been. No wonder she almost loses it when the sleepover comes close to being ruined by her friends' squabbling.
    • Word of God states that the Mane Six are intended to be roughly between 12-18 at the start of the series... but it's still rather sad. You can only imagine how she probably struggled with making many friends as a filly due to her being both a bookworm and Super OCD, among other things. It makes her initial attitude in the two-part opener look sadder — she's been so used to not having friends that she can't even understand how wonderful a feeling it is. All those people who grew up as loners (generally a combination of intended and not) can certainly relate — even if you claim you don't want to socialize, chances are you crave some measure of connection with others...
     Swarm of the Century 
  • It's a minor background gag but look at the face Lyra makes when she starts crying after her cake gets eaten right in front of her.
  • Pinkie becoming increasingly frustrated that her friends refuse to help her find missing instruments which is really a plan to get rid of the parasprites, because they assume she’s being her random self. To add it all up, she never explains why she needs to get the instruments in the first place.
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     Winter Wrap Up 
  • The ending to the song. Twilight sings the last line while standing by herself in the spotlight while the rest of the ponies have already had jobs assigned to them. Then, the other groups disappear into black one by one, leaving Twilight by herself. It's strong Foreshadowing for what happens later on.
  • Twilight's heartbroken reaction when Applejack reprimands her for using magic in the day when no magic is allowed. It's hard not to feel bad for Twilight and not to be mad at Applejack for making her cry.
    Twilight:(her eyes full of tears) Well, see...I just wanted to...(runs away crying)
  • Ironically Applejack (along with Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy) end up giving a similar 'hurt puppy' look afterwards when the Mayor chews them out for slowing down the Wrap Up with their arguing. It's revealed at this point every single Wrap Up (a supposedly blessed tradition) is a complete disaster because almost every pony is disorganised and in conflict with the other's work.
     Call of the Cutie 
  • Apple Bloom being teased for being a "blank flank". Anyone who has been bullied for being different than the rest of the crowd can easily relate to her. And then there's this face that she makes...
     Suited for Success 
  • Rarity's excitement at the first dresses she made in Suited For Success. It would be adorable and heartwarming, but her friends are just too disappointed by them to make it go how it should.
  • On the other hand, while Rarity's breakdown is considered to be one of her funniest moments, to some fans her breakdown is heartbreaking.
     Feeling Pinkie Keen 
  • Twilight is a bit of a Butt-Monkey in this episode: she gets three Door Slams You moments, gets a wagon of hay, a flowerpot, an anvil and a piano fall on her, gets stung by bees and breaks her forelegs. At least she gets better in the next scene.
     Sonic Rainboom 
  • Dash's insecurity thoughout the episode can touch a nerve.
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     A Bird in the Hoof 
  • Fluttershy's little whimper as she starts to cry and the face she makes when Philomena bursts into flames, with her ashes slipping through Fluttershy's hooves. That scene had to be traumatic for some kids initially. They don't explicitly say it, but Philomena died.
    • It's not only traumatizing, it's also very depressing, both for the viewer as for Fluttershy herself. She had done everything to cure the phoenix, and it just combusts in mid-air. For Fluttershy, all her work would be for non. Plus, she's afraid since this is Celestia's bird, so for Fluttershy, she would think that she would be executed or something like that. Twilight's fear for the princess hadn't helped a thing in here, it only made it worse!
     The Cutie Mark Chronicles 
  • The homesick Applejack's sad little "cock-a-doodle-doo" at the sunrise before shedding a Single Tear.
  • When Big Macintosh cried when Applejack left. It was so unexpected, but it underscored the fact that he's Applejack's big brother.
  • Twilight's slumped posture and defeated tone when she says "I'm sorry I wasted your time" to the examiners.
  • "There was no talking. There was no smiling. (sigh) There were only rocks."
  • Fluttershy being bullied by a pair of jocks who, while they appear younger, are bigger and stronger than her. Especially since she's only at Summer Flight Camp to get stronger, but she can't. Thankfully, Rainbow Dash comes to Fluttershy's aid and defends her from the bullies.
     Owl's Well That Ends Well 
  • Spike crying as he gets it into his head that Twilight doesn't love him anymore.
    • His whole self-imposed exile afterward, when he stays alone in a treasure cave and then almost gets eaten by another dragon, who was living alone in that treasure cave.
    • What about his state of envy leading up to that? He'd been going out of his way helping set things up for Twilight and her friends beforehand, and his obvious enjoyment of the attention he gets from said girls at get-togethers made clear that he felt it was worth it. Then some owl comes along to do the same thing and most of that attention, for a while, seems to be going to the owl. Spike even sees Rarity give the owl the same gift she gave him. As wrong as it was to react the way he did, it's difficult not to pity him.
  • And of course it becomes even worse after seeing "The Crystal Empire."
     Party of One 
  • Pinkie's reaction when Spike tells her exactly what she wants to hear: that her friends are all lying to her and avoiding her because they don't like her parties and don't want to be her friends anymore. She's at first elated from being "right", but then the implications sink in. Pinkie Pie doesn't just get sad. She practically shatters. Just looking at Pinkie really sad for the first time is soul crushing.
    • Then, someone made this, to really drive the feelings home.
  • It's subtle, but this moment implies that Pinkie Pie hates being left all alone after one of her parties is over. The fact that she immediately tries to get another party going the next morning can easily be interpreted as her being desperate for companionship.
     The Best Night Ever 
  • The ponies finding the Grand Galloping Gala to fall far short of their hopeful expectations. What really sells the scene is that slow, sad music that creeps up during the montage. The musical number just before also adds to the weight of this whole scene, showing how much all six ponies have banked so many of their hopes and dreams on this one night.
    • Seeing Pinkie Pie, of all ponies, sitting alone and miserable, singing to herself, with her voice uncharacteristically flat.
      Pinkie Pie: I'm at the Grand Galloping Gala... and it's not what I dreamed.
    • Rainbow Dash is finally invited to hang out with her idols, Soarin' and Spitfire, who despite being genuinely interested in her, end up getting snatched away by Canterlot's elite because of their fame. All the poor mare wanted was to spend time with her heroes and yet they were just pulled away from her because of a bunch of stuck-up aristocrats, leaving poor Dash heartbroken and out of the scene.
    • Applejack really wanted to sell out her apple desserts. But, needless to say, no one thinks to even look at them — or try them.
      • Also remember, the reason she wanted to sell her wares was because she wanted to pass the money on to her family. Not only is she disappointed, her family will be losing out as well.
    • Fluttershy. She came across so many magnificent animals in the Gala's gardens. But, whenever she tries to interact with them, they always seem to avoid her.
    • Rarity. From her portion of the "At The Gala" song, you can tell she's absolutely overjoyed at the possibility of finding herself a classy coltfriend, only to have reality buck her in the face when she finds out the one she has her eye on is a total prick. She just wanted to be treated like a lady. Of course, he's under no delusions that he isn't a gentlecolt.
    • Judging by how excited he was to go in the "The Ticket Master", because he wanted to spend time with his friends, Spike spending most of the night alone at the bar makes you want to hug the little guy. It's made even worse when the Mane Six leave him upon entering the Gala.
    • Twilight's story is also very sad. Watching the full episode, then going back and hearing Twilight happily singing, "It is going to be so special, as she takes time just for me!" She just wanted to spend time with her mentor.
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