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What An Idiot / My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
aka: My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic IDW

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The average horse is said to be pretty darned smart already. And horse people with human intelligence, even more so. That said, to err is to pony, and Equestria is filled with moments where the characters are silly ponies.


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    Season 1 
  • "Friendship is Magic, part 1" ("Mare in the Moon")
    • Twilight finds evidence in her books that Nightmare Moon will return, and that the Elements of Harmony can defeat her. She orders Spike, her assistant, to send a warning letter to Princess Celestia. Celestia as it turns out already has the solution on hand and decides to send Twilight to Ponyville to implement it.
      You'd Expect: That Celestia would tell Twilight she believes her and provides the solution: that you need friends to brave Nightmare Moon's reign of terror. While Twilight may have gone into Measuring the Marigolds about friendship, she would have been more willing to enjoy the hospitality given to her in Ponyville, such as Applejack giving her lunch, Rarity insisting on a makeover, and Pinkie Pie throwing a welcome party.
      Or: That Celestia would reassure Twilight that she would properly deal with the matter (which she technically would be by sending Twilight to make friends who would bear the Elements of Harmony). Twilight would be free to socialize naturally and enjoy herself, giving her a much easier time making the friends she needs without seeing said friends as a means to an end.
      Instead: Already thinking that Twilight's attitude towards friendship will not make it authentic enough for the Elements of Harmony to work if she was told about Nightmare Moon, Celestia plays Obfuscating Stupidity, dismisses Twilight's claims and sends her to Ponyville on the excuse that she's cooped herself in reading and needs to socialize. Twilight as a result is polite but not enjoying completely her interactions with the Ponyville ponies because she's worried about Nightmare Moon's return. It also means that when Nightmare Moon arrives and Celestia vanishes, Twilight only has one book in her library that provides the answer about the Elements of Harmony, and the other ponies have to put faith in it to stop the eternal night. Things ended up working out, but it was a very close call on Celestia's part due to Twilight's anxiety.
  • "The Ticket Master":
    • Princess Celestia gives Twilight two tickets to the Grand Galloping Gala. She decides to keep one and give the other to somepony else since Spike doesn't want it. The rest of the then-new Elements of Harmony hear about this and soon Twilight is caught in a dilemma. She decides to think it over while grabbing a bite to eat.
      You'd Expect: The rest of the Mane Six to give Twilight some time to make her decision and let eat her lunch since she can't decide on an empty stomach.
      Instead: They all decide to keep pestering her with extra favors and not even give her a chance to eat, let alone think her decision over. Eventually, the entire town hears about the extra ticket and they get in on the act as well.
    • Twilight orders a sandwich at a cafe, yet it starts raining everywhere except on her. Rainbow keeps it sunny in favor of getting a ticket.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to eat her sandwich while talking to Rainbow.
      Instead: Twilight never touches her sandwich and simply asks Rainbow to close up the cloud immediately. Rainbow fulfills the request, and that was the moment Twilight is about to eat...and she gets rained on!
    • As for the ticket, Twilight cannot decide who to take.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to write to Celestia about her problem and ask for help.
      Instead: She spends the whole episode torn between who to take with.
      As a result: In the end, Twilight decides to return both tickets to Celestia as she wouldn't go anywhere without all her friends. Celestia's reply is simply, "Why didn't you just say so in the first place?", and she gives them all tickets.
      And On That Note, You'd Expect: That Celestia, having met all five of Twilight's new friends at the end of "Friendship is Magic, part 2" and knowing the role they played in dealing with Nightmare Moon, would have sent enough tickets for the entire group to begin with.
  • "Applebuck Season":
    • Applejack has been getting dizzy and is having trouble hearing due to a lack of sleep, due to harvesting her family's apple farm alone. Twilight Sparkle checks on her and asks if she can do anything to help.
      You'd Expect: Applejack to accept Twilight's offer no matter how big or small. They can also round up her other friends to start harvesting from the apple trees so she can get some rest like a honest friend.
      Instead: She refuses and continues to buck the apple trees. Applejack's condition deteriorates throughout the episode by repeatedly rejecting Twilight's help, leading to the following moments below.
    • Rainbow Dash wants Applejack's help in doing a "mite dangerous" stunt, where the latter will jump on a springboard target to launch Rainbow Dash into the air. Because she's exhausted and getting double vision, Applejack keeps missing the target and landing on her rear, getting Wing Ding Eyes.
      You'd Expect: For Rainbow Dash to call a time out, and see if Applejack is okay. Since she isn't, a five minute break might be a good idea. There's something obviously wrong if Applejack has missed the target five times.
      Instead: Rainbow Dash has No Sympathy and Failed a Spot Check, yelling at Applejack for being undependable. This leads to Applejack trying to merely push down the target, before giving one last go with her last bit of strength, at the one time Rainbow Dash isn't ready. Rainbow Dash speeds through the air before crashing into Twilight's tree, only realizing belatedly that Applejack needs help.
    • Pinkie Pie and Applejack attempt to bake muffins while Mr. and Mrs. Cake are not at Sugarcube Corner. Applejack, unfortunately is tired from apple bucking by herself. Her sleepiness causes her to misread the ingredients and instructions, causing her to substitute potato chips for chocolate chips, soda pop for baking soda, a cup of sour lemon juice for a cup of flour, and earthworms for wheat germ. All that will end up not making a good muffin.
      You'd Expect: Pinkie Pie to notice the ingredients not being right (especially the earthworms instead of wheat germs) and maybe tell the sleepy Applejack that something isn't right with the ingredients, stop with baking the muffins and start over (maybe with her baking the muffins by herself or with another pony that isn't tired). You'd have to be idiotic to not notice any disgusting ingredients that aren't right, and Pinkie is a professional baker.
      Instead: Pinkie doesn't even notice any of the ingredients not being right, and ends up baking the "Baked Bads". She ends up causing lots of ponies (including Pinkie herself), to get sick!
    • Fluttershy needs Applejack's help in rounding up bunnies for her bunny census. However, Winona's barking and Applejack's tough demeanor frightens them. Fluttershy tells them to stop, but Applejack insists that she knows what they're doing.
      You'd Expect: Fluttershy to protect the bunnies and to use the Stare on Winona and Applejack. At the very worst, she can tell Applejack she doesn't need her help at the moment.
      Instead: She just stands there and the bunnies take off from Applejack and Winona, causing them to stampede through Ponyville. This turns out to be Twilight's final straw for Applejack who still refuses her help but it's only Applejack discovered she only bucked half the orchard when she realizes she needs Twilight and friends to help. She then apologizes for her dishonesty.
  • "Boast Busters":
    • Applejack, Rarity and Rainbow Dash comment on Trixie's showing off and agree that she needs to be taught a lesson in humility. However, Rainbow Dash heckles Trixie who points out the "neigh-sayers in the audience" and challenges anypony to an impromptu magic showdown. While Rarity, like Trixie, is a unicorn who can match the show mare's skills...
      You'd Expect: Applejack and Rainbow Dash to think twice about accepting Trixie's challenge, considering her magic can readily overpower that of an earth pony and a pegasus.
      Or: For them to understand that for a stage performer, boasting and showing off are pretty much part of the job description.
      Instead: Without any hesitation, they both take on Trixie and she easily defeats the two of them, humiliating them in front of Ponyville in the process.
    • Trixie also brags to the residents of Ponyville about how she defeated an Ursa Major. Snips and Snails believe the story, yet Trixie becomes defensive when they bring it up. Spike tells them there's no way they should believe her since they never saw her do it.
      You'd Expect: Snips and Snails to think for a moment that Trixie could be making it up.
      Instead: They go into the Everfree Forest and bring an Ursa to Ponyville just to see Trixie vanquish it with their own eyes. Before Trixie confesses that she never did such a thing, she even lampshades this to Snips and Snails. Thankfully, Twilight Sparkle shows up and stops the Ursa before it can do any real damage. Afterward, thanks to Snips and Snails, Trixie loses her caravan, her reputation, and her livelihood, and comes back seeking revenge on all of Ponyville, namely Twilight.
      Even Worse: If My Little Pony: The Movie (2017) is anything to go by, they were potentially this close to getting their horns swiped off ala Tempest Shadow; they're lucky to have that intact, let alone the rest of them.
  • "Dragonshy":
    • Fluttershy freaks out when she finds out that a dragon has taken refuge in Equestria, and whose smoke is dangerous to the living creatures there. Due to being terrified, however, she becomes paralyzed and unwilling to help her friends journey to get rid of it, despite being a Fluffy Tamer.
      You'd Expect: That the ponies would try to find out why she's so scared before they start out, despite Fluttershy's tongue-tied nature. Even with the time limit in that the smoke will eventually spread and suffocate everyone, they can at least promise Fluttershy that they'll be there for her to help with the dragon and to back her up. Twilight in particular may know coping strategies to keep Fluttershy distracted long enough to reach the cave.
      Instead: For the most part they assume that Fluttershy is scared of her own shadow, and various things that crop up during the journey, due to her being a Shrinking Violet. Fluttershy as a result becomes The Millstone and wastes a lot of valuable time, by fainting at the wrong time and causing a perilous avalanche. They only find out about her irrational (to their mind) phobia when they finally reach the cave, and Fluttershy apologetically refuses to help.
    • Twilight's attempt to lure the dragon out of the cave falls flat so Rarity steps up to the challenge. She does this by sweet-talking the dragon, telling him he needs to show off his radiant scales. This seems to work, even as Rarity notices the dragon's large treasure hoard.
      You'd Expect: Rarity to just ignore the jewels and keep bolstering the dragon into getting out of the cave.
      Instead: Clearly wanting the jewels for her own personal gain, she offers to watch over them once he leaves. Naturally, this upsets the dragon who chases her out.
      Bonus Idiot Points: For actually trying on some of the jewels while convincing the dragon to leave.
      Then: Pinkie Pie's plan to lure the dragon out with laughter also fails so Rainbow Dash becomes fed up. She tells her friends that she will get the dragon out of the cave herself, much to Twilight's horror.
      You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash to remember how badly her friends' attempts turned out, take a deep breath and organize another plan with her friends.
      Instead: She charges into the cave and kicks the dragon in his snout. Needless to say, the dragon gets even madder and he starts attacking Rainbow Dash and her friends. He is finally stopped when Fluttershy gives him a talking to.
  • "Look Before You Sleep":
    • Applejack and Rarity are spending the night at Twilight's house due to a thunderstorm. At one point, lightning strikes a nearby tree, rendering its top loose. Applejack needs to tear it down, since she and Rarity were too busy arguing earlier in the day to properly get the job done.
      You'd Expect: Applejack to find an angle where the tree won't disrupt any houses, then try to take the treetop down.
      Instead: She attempts to lasso the treetop from Twilight's bedroom, causing it to break off and fly right into her house.
  • In "Bridle Gossip", Applejack catches her sister Apple Bloom going off to the Everfree Forest in search of Zecora. Due to the Poison Joke shrinking her to a few inches high, the only way Applejack can stop her is by hiding in Apple Bloom's tail.
    You'd Expect: Applejack to avoid detection by keeping quiet until Apple Bloom arrives at Zecora's hut.
    Instead: She yells at Apple Bloom to stop as they reach the entrance to the Everfree. Apple Bloom puts her on a tree branch and goes off without her.
  • "Swarm of the Century" is pretty much the definition of this trope, as Pinkie Pie, of all ponies, is the only one not fooled by the parasprites' cuteness and knew how to get rid of them, and repeatedly asks her friends if they have a certain instrument and to help her.
    You'd Expect: Pinkie to simply explain why she needs the instruments.
    Instead: She simply asks for the instrument and begs for help for no reason, leading her friends to assume she's being her random self and ignore her, making her even more frustrated as the episode goes on.
    Compiling It: The one time someone (Twilight) asked Pinkie if she knew anything about parasprites, Pinkie ignored them and ran off to get the instruments.
    The other Mane Five manage to get all the parasprites into a ball, well it SEEMS like all of them...
    You'd Expect: Having seen the damage parasprites do and that they reproduce very easily, Fluttershy to not have kept any.
    Instead: She keeps one just because it's "so cute", allowing it to make more parasprites and continue destroying Ponyville.
  • In the episode "Call of The Cutie", Apple Bloom is in class and Diamond Tiara passes a note to her. Cheriliee (the teacher) catches Apple Bloom and demands her to read the note. She sees the note on the floor and mentions that it’s blank. Diamond Tiara then retorts “Sound like anything else we know? [referring to Apple Bloom's blank flank]” The class laughs at Apple Bloom.
    You’d Expect: For Cheerilee to scold Diamond Tiara for what she did.
    Instead: She does nothing.
  • “Fall Weather Friends” has its share of these moments between Rainbow Dash and Applejack in the Running of the Leaves. Chief among them would be to pay attention to the course and not attempt to sabotage each other. But the tree with the beehive really takes the cake.
    You’d Think: Applejack would just continue on and find some other way to stall Rainbow Dash, if she wanted to stop her that badly.
    Instead: She delivers a kick to the trunk, knocking down the hive. The angry bees chase Rainbow Dash, who ironically winds up well in the lead as a result. Really, Applejack? You think a swarm is going to slow her down?
  • "Suited for Success" has few moments around the dresses that Rarity makes as gifts to her friends so they'll look their best for the Grand Galloping Gala.
    • After finishing the initial gowns once, Rarity shows them off. The other ponies are hesitant since the dresses aren't what they had in mind: Twilight wants technically accurate star embroidery, Fluttershy wants "French haute couture," Pinkie Pie wants fun stuff like "balloons, lollipops and streamers", Applejack wants a practical outfit, and Rainbow just wants something "cool".
      You'd Expect: For someone to suggest that the ponies try on the dresses first, and see how they look. If they still aren't satisfied, Rarity could do sketches instead of actual sewing to take their suggestions into account without wasting fabric.
      Instead: Rarity, wanting her friends to be happy, immediately insists on modifying the designs without any pony trying on their gowns to see the fit. Her friends proceed to go overboard with their suggestions, and the dresses turn out to be terrible. They show off the dresses in a fashion show, and everypony laughs at them. Rarity, already overworked, goes into Heroic BSoD and won't leave her room for days, without having designed her own gown. Her friends fortunately snap her out of it and set things right, but it could have been avoided if they had listened to Rarity in the first place.
  • "Feeling Pinkie Keen":
    • Twilight Sparkle has never heard of Pinkie Pie's Pinkie Sense which she uses to predict any lurking danger.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to trust Pinkie's ability as everypony has different magic and abilities.
      Instead: She refuses to believe Pinkie's instincts and it causes her to keep getting hurt.
      Throughout This: While Twilight tests the Pinkie Sense, Spike notices when the Pinkie Sense will trigger accidents.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to listen to him for her own safety.
      Instead: She still denies the Pinkie Sense and each time she gets hurt by failing to understand it. She gets stung by bees, falls into Applejack's hidden door and gets her head smashed by a flower pot, an anvil, a hay cart and a piano from a moving company run by pegasi above.
    • After been chased by the Hydra, Twilight's friends make it to the other side of a cliff.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to teleport herself to her friends.
      Instead: She doesn't and falls off the cliff, only to be saved by the bubbles below.
  • In "Sonic Rainboom", Rainbow Dash is nervous for her upcoming performance in the Best Young Flyers' Competition in Cloudsdale. Rarity takes note of this and convinces Twilight to cast a difficult spell on her that grants temporary wings, so she can fly up and support her friend. However, when they get to Cloudsdale, Rarity begins to let the attention her new wings are bringing her go to her head, and soon forgets why she wanted them in the first place. Eventually, Twilight has to remind her why they're all there and to quit showing off.
    You'd Expect Rarity to listen to Twilight.
    Instead: She decides to enter the competition herself, exacerbating Rainbow Dash's nerves. Eventually, she ends up losing her wings due to flying too close to the sun, and would've certainly plummeted to her demise if not for Rainbow Dash pulling off a Sonic Rainboom at the last minute to save her.
  • In "Over a Barrel", the battle at High Noon is about to commence; but then Chief Thunderhooves looks as if he's about to call it all off.
    You'd Expect: Everyone to keep their mouths shut, or for the Appleloosians to talk things through and reach a conclusion.
    Instead: Pinkie Pie thinks it's a good idea to reprise her song, which already received a horrible reception earlier in the episode. Well done Pinkie; you caused a battle that could have been prevented.
  • In "A Bird in the Hoof", Fluttershy goes to Sugarcube Corner for Princess Celestia's brunch. While there, she brought her pet bird, Philomena, along. Fluttershy notices that the bird seems to be really, really sick, but little do they know that Philomena is actually a phoenix, that is currently undergoing the death and rebirth cycle of losing its feathers, burning to ash, then being resurrected. Celestia has to leave early due to the mayor of Ponyville wanting to see her.
    You'd Expect: That before Celestia leaves, Fluttershy would ask Celestia if she could take care of her bird, which would then lead to Celestia explaining that Philomena is a phoenix close to its death and rebirth, thus avoiding the plot completely and saving Fluttershy the trouble.
    Instead: Without asking, Fluttershy takes Philomena undetected, and attempts to take care of the bird without Celestia's permission. This causes a lot of trouble for Fluttershy and also Twilight, who don't find out about the whole phoenix thing UNTIL after Philomena completes her death and rebirth cycle at the end of the episode. Fluttershy lampshades this at the end of the episode.
  • "Owl's Well That Ends Well":
    • Twilight tells Spike to get her a book that she owns about astronomy. When pulling it out of the shelf, he accidentally sneezes on it, causing it to burn to ashes. He gets worried about what Twilight would say to him.
      You'd Expect: Spike would tell the truth to her.
      Instead: He lies and says that he couldn't find it. Later on, he gets scolded by Twilight when she and Owlowiscious find out about this.
      On The Other Hand: You'd think Twilight would've realized that letting a dragon handle dusty and flammable materials is a bad idea, and not let him near the books she hasn't cleaned.
      You'd Then Expect: Spike would realize that he would have only himself to blame.
      Instead: He blames it on Owlowicious and tries to get rid of him by framing him for killing a mouse (which was fake), only to get caught in the act by Twilight.
    • Owlowicious starts doing stuff for Spike at night.
      You'd Expect: Spike would realize that he can't do everything at once and would accept Owlowiscious as an assistant to him.
      Instead: He gets jealous and tries to get rid of him, but to no avail.
      You'd Then Expect: Twilight to immediately catch onto this and explain to Spike that Owlowicious is only there to be her nighttime assistant, so that Spike can get some sleep. Fluttershy even points this out to her, saying that Spike thinks he's being replaced.
      Instead: Twilight laughs it off and automatically assumes that Spike knows he can't be replaced. This leads to all of the above mentioned.
  • In "Party of One", the rest of the Mane Six are avoiding Pinkie Pie and making up false reasons not to attend Gummy the Alligator's after-birthday party (the reason behind this was to create a surprise birthday party for Pinkie Pie, as that day was her birthday). Pinkie interrogates Spike to give her answers as to why they were avoiding her all day. After some failed attempts, she loses her patience and says, "Tell me that my friends are all lying to me and avoiding me because they don't like my parties and they DON'T WANT TO BE MY FRIENDS ANYMORE!"
    You'd Expect: Spike to tell Pinkie Pie that, save for Twilight, he has no idea what she's talking about since he hasn't been in contact with the rest of Pinkie's friends.
    Instead: He literally repeats what she just said back to her.
    So: Pinkie then takes it as her final answer, and her mane and tail go back to the form it was in when she lived on her parents' rock farm during her depressing childhood prior to the Sonic Rainboom, and also becomes severely depressed, believing that her friends don't like her parties and don't want to be friends with Pinkie anymore.
    You'd Then Expect: Spike to realize Pinkie is Not Herself make some attempt to cheer her up.
    Instead: He doesn't even notice Pinkie's funk, and just selfishly eats all the gems that he was offered, and Pinkie is left going insane by doing a mock party with inanimate objects. Who knows what would've happened if Rainbow Dash never stopped by and dragged Pinkie to her surprise birthday party and made her feel better?
  • In "The Best Night Ever", Rarity has been dreaming of meeting Prince Blueblood. He makes a bad first impression on her, however, by giving her an It's All About Me attitude. He shows no respect, generosity or compassion towards her. Rarity admits that he wasn't quite what she dreamed of and is ruining her fantasy of "the best night ever".
    You'd Expect: Rarity to pick her battles and leave the prince. There are dozens of royal folk at the Gala that she could stay with for the evening who share Blueblood's status.
    Instead: Hoping that her generosity will bring out his princely side, Rarity stays with Blueblood. He proceeds to use her shawl over a puddle, get her to open a door for him, refuse to pay for Applejack's fritters and insults said fritters after tasting them. To top it all off, he uses her as a Human Shield when Pinkie Pie launches a cake towards them, ruining her handmade dress. He doesn't even respond to Rarity's subsequent "The Reason You Suck" Speech because he's too worried about getting dirty from the cake and frosting.

    Season 2 
  • "The Return of Harmony, Part 2":
    • Continuing off of the previous episode, Discord has corrupted the Mane Five, except for Twilight Sparkle, he has also given back their wings and horns when declared that "the game is over". So Twilight can use her magic again.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to notice the fact that the color change of her friends turning grey as they get Discorded, use her regained magic abilities (i.e. cast a memory spell) to try to fix the situation and try to restore her friends and uncorrupt them right away. Even if her not noticing the grey color was Handwaved as that only being for the benefit of the audience, as the only two characters to point it out are noted Fourth Wall Observers, she should have noticed from the radical change in behavior that Discord had done something to them while they were separated.
      Instead: While Twilight uses her magic to move certain objects, such as Rarity's "diamond" (which is actually a boulder), the Elements of Harmony necklaces and tiara (which is Twilight's) and flipping through her reference guide of the Elements of Harmony, she never even tries to use her magic abilities to restore her corrupted friends, and the situation ends up continually getting worse, up to the point where Twilight loses hope and she gets discorded and turns grey and becomes severely depressed. If Celestia's letters hadn't shown up and Twilight didn't read them, Discord would have triumphed!
    • After Twilight restores her friends in the third act, she confronts Discord, who is ruling Ponyville in chaos.
      You'd Think: Discord would notice the fact the Mane 6 have regained their colors and have been restored to their actual elements and simply corrupt them again, saving him from being turned to stone again.
      Instead: While he does attempt to grab them by using his psychic powers, he doesn't notice about their restored selves, gloats them in an unenthusiastic way saying "Fine, go ahead. Try to use your elements, frienemies. Just make it quick.", and suffers the consequences and turns back into stone.
  • "Lesson Zero":
    • Twilight freaks out when she realizes she forgot to send a letter to Princess Celestia about a friendship lesson she's learned. Spike tries to reassure her that Celestia won't begrudge her for missing a letter, but Twilight doesn't listen. When she rushes through Ponyville searching for a problem to solve with friendship, her friends are managing their problems well on their own.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to simply dash off a letter about her observations. She can write about how getting too involved in other ponies' businesses can stress a friendship, how with Rainbow Dash and Applejack they can overcome their differences to reach a common goal or that somepony like Fluttershy can handle a bear with a bad neck.
      Instead: She doesn't consider that a rush job may be better than no assignment at all. This causes her to undergo Sanity Slippage and decides to "create a problem" to solve. This causes chaos in Ponyville that Princess Celestia has to bail her out of.
  • In "Luna Eclipsed," several What an Idiot! moments occur.
    • First, when Luna first makes her appearance, it at first seems that Nightmare Moon has returned, but she announces that she wants to clean up her image and throw a feast on Nightmare Night. Pinkie Pie then scares the other ponies by claiming "Nightmare Moon" wants to eat them.
      You'd Think: The Mayor would remember to respect the princess, who is kin to Celestia, and calm down the other ponies.
      Instead: The Mayor remains in scared, Stunned Silence, and doesn't react when Luna offers her hand. This offends Luna, and the latter walks off on a huff, planting the seeds of her decision to announce that Nightmare Night is cancelled. Twilight is the only pony who realizes that Luna's feelings are hurt, and goes to help her. So much for staying on good terms with the royalty.
    • Likewise, when Twilight tries to help Luna, they go to Fluttershy first, but Pinkie Pie messes up Luna's efforts to speak softly the way Fluttershy does and gain a better public image.
      You'd Think: Twilight's next stop would be to go to Pinkie Pie and tell her to knock it off, or even better, make peace with Princess Luna. In this way, Pinkie could communicate that she's only pretending to be scared, the way she does later on when she shakes hooves with Princess Luna.
      Instead: Twilight takes Luna to Applejack next, and Pinkie Pie again messes up Luna's attempts to have fun and improve her image. This leads to Luna cancelling Nightmare Night... at least until the end of the episode.

  • "May the Best Pet Win":
    • Rainbow Dash is looking to get a pet, and Fluttershy is showing her the animals up for adoption. Rainbow tells Fluttershy that she is looking for a pet that could fly alongside her (which would make perfect sense given that she spends most of her waking hours flying).
      You'd Expect: That Fluttershy, with all her animal-related experience, would know a thing or two about choosing a pet to match one's lifestyle.
      Instead: She lists each and every animal she has available, not even bothering to mention the ones with wings until after Rainbow Dash has reminded her twice of what she is looking for in a pet. And when Rainbow sets up the contest to select a pet, Fluttershy pressures her to allow a tortoise (who would ultimately be known as Tank) to compete, despite knowing full well that he is not what Rainbow is looking for.
    • During the contest, Rainbow Dash is behaving like a drill sergeant, yelling at the animals and putting them through dangerous stunts.
      You'd Expect: That Fluttershy (or someone) would call her out on her mistreating the animals.
      Instead: Twilight and Applejack briefly mention that Rainbow has her pet-related priorities out of whack, but no one bothers to confront her.

  • "The Mysterious Mare Do Well": Rainbow Dash becomes quite full of herself due to the attention she gets for her heroism. Her friends don't like how she's turning out.
    You'd Think: They would have at least tried to talk to or reason with Rainbow Dash.
    Instead: In an attempt to get her to feel what it's like to be full of herself, all five of the remaining Mane Six start impersonating Mare Do Well.
  • "Sweet and Elite": Rarity gets caught up in a couple of lies that later come back to bite her.
    • It starts when Fancy Pants invites Rarity to a private box in the Wonderbolts' Derby. To both of their surprise, she correctly predicts who wins the race. Fancy Pants asks how she knew and she brings up Rainbow Dash. A Canterlot elite then sneers at Rarity and asks who Rainbow Dash is.
      You'd Expect: Rarity to tell the elite that Rainbow Dash is one of her friends who can perform the Sonic Rainboom and together they have (as of this episode) saved Equestria twice. At the very least, she could bring up the time Rainbow Dash saved her own life.
      Instead: She says that Rainbow Dash is the Wonderbolts' trainer and doesn't list any of the accomplishments she did. Of course, the elite buys it but that's not the point.
    • After that, Rarity continues to enjoy her stay in Canterlot, attending numerous gatherings and getting acquainted with the unicorn crowd. However, she not only runs out of time to design a birthday dress for Twilight but also hears about a garden party that will take place on her friend's birthday. After some deliberation, she decides to attend the garden party and prepares to write to Twilight, saying that she will be staying a few extra days.
      You'd Expect: Rarity to be honest, apologize to Twilight for being so busy in Canterlot and perhaps send her a surprise gift as a token of forgiveness.
      Instead: She makes up an excuse, writing that her cat Opalescence has fallen ill. This backfires on her big time when the rest of her friends decide to visit her in Canterlot to check on Opal and move Twilight's birthday party to Celestia's castle.
  • "Secret of My Excess":
    • Spike starts demanding presents from others for his birthday until Twilight finds him and gets told to give them back to everypony.
      You'd Expect: Twilight would escort Spike to the rightful owners of the "gifts".
      Instead: She just leaves Spike to do this on his own. This allows him to get more "presents".
      You'd Then Expect: Twilight would wait until Spike got home before going to bed.
      Instead: She goes to bed before he returns and doesn't know that he brought more stuff back until the next morning, which she then finds out that Spike has grown taller and, soon after, his voice gets deeper.
      You'd Then Expect: Twilight would either use her magic to change Spike back before he gets too big.
      Or: If that doesn't work, teleport herself and Spike to Princess Celestia for assistance.
      Instead: She just takes him to a doctor, a veterinarian, and Zecora and only finds out that Spike's greed is causing him to age prematurely, instead of getting both that information and turning him back to normal. Spike soon escapes and tries to steal Scootaloo's scooter.
      You'd THEN Expect: Twilight, knowing what giving things to Spike would do, would either use her magic to blindfold him and/or to drag him away from the crusaders.
      Instead: She uses a broom to lure Spike away, causing him to get even bigger. She then locks Spike into a room in the library.
      You'd THEN Expect: Twilight would put a barrier in the room to prevent Spike from escaping.
      Instead: She doesn't, allowing Spike to escape.
    • While this is happening, Pinkie Pie gets attacked by Spike when he tries to steal her cakes at Sugarcube Corner.
      You'd Expect: Pinkie Pie would hide the cakes.
      Instead: She attacks Spike by throwing cakes at him, causing him to grow even bigger. Nice job provoking Spike, Pinkie.
  • "Baby Cakes": Pinkie Pie volunteers to babysit the Cakes' newborn twins, Pound Cake and Pumpkin while they're out. However, she soon learns that the job is easier said than done.. Eventually, Twilight comes by to offer Pinkie an extra hoof, which Pinkie is extremely grateful for.
    You'd Expect: Twilight to say nothing else, and for that to be just the end of it.
    Instead: She innocently and casually tells Pinkie that she knew she probably couldn't handle the job, prompting an offended Pinkie to slam the door in Twilight's face.
  • "Hearth's Warming Eve": In the story the leaders of Unicorns, Pegasus and Earth Ponies find out that something has happened to the weather; it has become suddenly cold. Now, they have to find out why.
    You'd Expect: All three groups to work together like a team.
    Instead: They all keep arguing and blaming each other over who caused the bad weather.
    Later: All three leaders, including their assistants, stay in a cave where it's still very cold, because there are Windigos nearby.
    You'd Expect: The leaders to try not to argue again and stay together until spring.
    Instead: The leaders ''still'' argue with each other and become frozen solid.
  • "The Last Roundup" has an infamous one for Rainbow Dash while she and her friends chase a fleeing Applejack from Dodge Junction. In the midst of this, Pinkie Pie tries to talk some sense into Applejack. When that doesn't work, she jumps back in her friends' cart but she knocks Rarity off and they both fall to the ground. Twilight orders Rainbow Dash, who is pulling the cart along with Fluttershy, to turn around.
    You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash, being the Element of Loyalty, to do just that and pick up Pinkie Pie and Rarity before resuming their chase with Applejack.
    Instead: She tells Twilight, "No time! They knew what they were getting into!" and they leave the two mares behind!
  • "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000" is loaded with these:
    • It starts when the Apples gear up for cider season and a long line of ponies waits by their stand.
      You'd Expect: The Apples to limit consumption of their cider to one mug per pony, that way everypony has a fair shot.
      Instead: Ponies such as Pinkie Pie wind up with upwards of twenty mugs of cider, leading to quickly depleted barrels and angry thirsty customers.
      Then: The Flim Flam brothers arrive in town, boasting their Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000 which turns out to be a big hit with the Ponyville crowd. They approach the Apples and pitch their machine along with a possible partnership. Despite the Flim Flam brothers agreeing to power the machine, they are asking for 75% of the profits.
      You'd Expect: Both sides to maybe come up with a compromise and not let business get in the way of their customers. The Apples could at least haggle with the Flim Flam brothers who may budge upon hearing Sweet Apple Acres' financial situation.
      Instead: Big Macintosh immediately refuses the offer and the Flim Flam brothers become competitors in response, hoping to drive Sweet Apple Acres out of business.
      It Gets Worse: The next day, the Apples run out of cider again and the Flim Flam brothers steal their apples in plain sight to make more.
      So: Applejack calls them out on it and the brothers challenge the Apples into a cider-making contest.
      You'd Expect: The Apples refuse or at the very worst, accept the challenge without any incentives.
      Instead: Granny Smith agrees to the Flim Flam brothers' condition that the winner will be the sole supplier of cider in Ponyville, without consulting the rest of the family!
      Then: The contest begins and the Flim Flam brothers don't even break a sweat, making three barrels of cider to the Apples' one. Applejack's friends take notice and Twilight asks Mayor Mare if honorary family members are allowed to help. She isn't sure so she asks the Flim Flam brothers
      You'd Expect: The brothers to tell Twilight she and her friends can't help since they aren't related to the Apples Pinkie not withstanding since she didn't know at the time.
      Instead: Thinking it's a lost cause, they let Twilight and her friends enter the competition. Soon enough, the Apples and the Mane Six start catching up to the Flim Flam brothers who then get a couple of major stupidity moments.
      You'd Then Expect: The brothers put more manual effort into the competition and inspect their machine to see if it can go any faster.
      Instead: They program their machine to accept bad apples, twigs and rocks into its cider press. They wind up winning but it comes at a major price considering what they do next.
      You'd Then Expect: The brothers to realize they put bad apples into some of the cider barrels and not let anypony taste it. At the very worst, they can dig up the good cider they made before they let Applejack's friends help. Or, given how quickly they were able to make good cider, just reset the machine and start making more.
      Instead: They serve the bad apple cider to the Ponyville crowd! Of course, everypony refuses to pay for it and the brothers get chased out of town.
  • "Read It And Weep": Rainbow Dash forgets her Daring Do book after she is given a clean bill of health. She plays sick in an attempt to revisit the room but the doctor catches on quickly and the staff ushers her out.
    You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash at this point to simply tell the hospital staff that she forgot something in the room. It's not like they won't let her search it.
    Instead: She attempts, and fails, to steal the book from her old room which is not only reoccupied but it results in herself getting chased out of the hospital by the staff. And don't start us on that Spy Catsuit!
  • "Hearts and Hooves Day": Twilight Sparkle bumps into the Cutie Mark Crusaders while reading a book about the origins of Hearts and Hooves Day. She tells them the holiday began with a love potion which intrigues the CMC since they are trying to play matchmakers with Cherilee and Big Macintosh. Sweetie Belle asks to borrow the book.
    You'd Expect: Twilight to keep the book away from the crusaders, considering what happened the last time one of them misused a potion.
    Instead: She gives the book to the CMC and they immediately disappear with it. They use the book to mix a love potion for Cherilee and Big Macintosh. The crusaders don't even realize they have brewed a love poison until after Cherilee and Big Macintosh drink it!
  • "Putting Your Hoof Down":
  • In "It's About Time", Twilight tries to prevent a warning her future self gave her. After some signs off the warning come true (getting a paper cut from one of Celestia's mailpieces, Spike burning off part of her mane with his fire breath and a flowerpot falling on her head), Twilight decides to monitor everything. One of the ways she has done so is by watching a constellation through her telescopes. She then gets into a panic when Pinkie Pie tells her that next Tuesday morning, the time Future Twilight came from, is the following day.
    You'd Expect: Twilight to research where she thinks the next sign in the sky would be and recalibrate her telescopes accordingly. At the very least, she should have enough common sense to realize that looking through a telescope in the daytime is a dangerous thing to do.
    Instead: She trusts Pinkie Pie to do this for her, and Pinkie readily admits that she has no idea what Twilight is talking about. Twilight looks through the telescope anyway, and she winds up blinding herself in her right eye when she accidentally aims it toward the sun. Pinkie Pie gives her an eyepatch, the same kind Future Twilight happened to be wearing.
  • In "Dragon Quest", Spike suffers an early bout of depression because he feels disconnected from his roots and has no Dragon friends or family to speak of. Twilight resolves to help him and they try to find out as much as they can about his origins.
    You'd Expect: Twilight or Spike to write a letter to either Princess Celestia or the Canterlot Magical Academy just asking "Hey, where'd that egg come from and why did you just have one lying around?" Or at the very least look into finding a Dragon specialist.
    Instead: Spike and Twilight go through every book in Twlight's library and when they find no dragon-related information, Spike decides to join in on a migration of dragons all by himself.
  • "Ponyville Confidential":
    • The Cutie Mark Crusaders are revealed as Gabby Gums.
      You'd Expect: The girls would try to apologize to them in person, err in pony or at least defend themselves to the others that it was all Diamond Tiara's blackmailing them.
      Instead: They try to get more stories from the pissed off ponies, causing the Power Trio to be treated like a pariah. Poor little fillies...
    • A moment after that, Diamond Tiara blackmails the Cutie Mark Crusaders because they attempted to stop writing hurtful stories.
      You'd Expect: For The Cutie Mark Crusaders to tell Cherilee what's going on to ensure they can quit making hurtful stories.
      Instead: They don't, and are exposed as Gabby Gums later.
      You'd Then Expect: For Cherilee to realize that things are getting out of hand, with the articles hurting feelings and reputations, and do something about it.
      Instead: She does nothing, allowing Diamond Tiara to keep publishing the paper.
      You'd Then Expect: That, once the Crusaders are revealed to be Gabby Gums, for Cherilee to investigate why were they making such hurtful articles, or at the very least, ask the editor she appointed why would she allow falsehoods and hurtful things to be published.
      Instead: She does nothing.
      You'd THEN expect: For somepony, anypony, to go to Cherilee, or even the paper's editor, and demand an explanation.
      Instead: They do nothing, and instead turn the Crusaders into pariahs, and yelling at them or even drenching them with rainwater.
  • The second season finale, "A Canterlot Wedding", has several "What an Idiot!" moments.
    • In Part 1, Twilight Sparkle goes to see the bride (and her former babysitter) Princess Cadance isn't what she used to be, and is acting uncharacteristically rude to her friends and family. She eventually discovers something suspicious about her.
      You'd Expect: She'll gather clues to back her claim just like in "MMMMystery on the Friendship Express" and talk to Shining Armor, Princess Celestia or Princess Luna privately to voice her suspicions and present her evidence, thus preventing any need for a spectacle; Or, she could call Princess Cadance out on how rude she's being. Just because it's her wedding there's no reason to act like a Spoiled Brat.
      You'd Also Expect: That she'd tell her friends about her personal relationship with Cadance. She could say that she's known Cadance since she was a filly and she would never act like that, even if she were under stress. With that in mind, the others may be more inclined to listen to her.
      Instead: Without considering ANY of the above actionsnote  and completely disregarding her own advice, Twilight barges into the wedding hall during the wedding rehearsal and straight up accuses Princess Cadance of being evil in front of everypony, including Shining Armor and Princess Celestia, driving Princess Cadance out of the room in tears. Shining Armor, after giving Twilight a scathing What the Hell, Hero? speech, strips her of her Best Mare title and bans her from the wedding. Her friends believe that she is jealous and shun her, and even her mentor becomes disappointed in her. Thus, she nearly loses their friendship and all their respect. If not for the fact that she turned out to be right about Cadance being evil all along!
    • In the same episode, Twilight's friends and family were unaware of why Princess Cadance was acting rude around them.
      You'd Expect: They would question themselves on whether or not Twilight is right about Cadance being evil or not when she said that, and would consequently be suspicious of Cadance's behavior. At the very least, they could've given her the benefit of the doubt.
      You'd Also Expect: That Twilight's friends would remember what happened the last time they dismissed her concerns out of hand, and at least take her doubts about Cadance more seriously.
      Instead: They completely forget about how much Cadance had been genuinely acting like a jerk to them and straight up ignore Twilight anyway, with Shining Armor calling her out for her accusation. The end result? A Changeling invasion on Canterlot after Shining Armor's forcefield weakens. Needless to say, in an In-Universe example, Queen Chrysalis Lampshades this when she calls out the Mane Six on being too caught up in their wedding plans.
    • And then there's the fact that Canterlot received a threat.
      You'd Expect: Celestia to hold off any sort of event, especially a royal wedding, until they can identify the threat, then either send Shining Armor and the guards after it. Or, if the threat is too powerful for the guards to contain on their own, invite Twilight and her friends to take out the threat with the Elements of Harmony.
      Instead: Celestia decides to hold the wedding anyway, but has the groom constantly cast a shield spell so massive that it's starting to wear on his mental capacity (it's mitigated by the fact that the bride gives him some energy boosts every now and then), increase security to ridiculous degrees (delayed letters and said shield), and then only telling Twilight about the wedding the day before it happens, not mentioning why they had to send it so late. This leads to Twilight looking like a Clingy Jealous Girl, which in turn led to the two other idiot moments above. Besides, Shining Armor mentions that Celestia wants him to be completely and utterly focused on protecting the kingdom against outside threat; how on Earth does she expect him to be focused on his job when his wedding- one of the biggest days of his life- is right around the corner? Particularly when one's wedding is at risk of being ruined BY said threat, which would consume Armor's thoughts with worry about how his wedding reception would go down. This is a moment of idiocy on Celestia's part on so many levels...
    • After being alienated from her mentor, friends, and brother and even possibly had their relationships with them ruined forever, a remorseful Twilight is spotted by Imposter Cadance/Queen Chrysalis.
      You'd Think: She would lie to Twilight, saying that everypony hates her. She could drive Twilight into a Despair Event Horizon, and tell her to leave Canterlot at once, or even use this to her advantage and convince her to backstab them. Case in point, she could have been wary that Twilight might continue her search and find more evidence on her - but at least she could have teleported her somewhere that's nowhere near the real Princess Cadance.
      Instead: She plays the Villain Ball, reveals her true form and teleports her near the Canterlot Caves, giving Twilight a chance to discover the the real Princess Cadance.
    • Even before the start with Chrysalis disguising as Princess Cadance.
      You'd Think: That she would act like the real Princess Cadance and or at least explain to Twilight that she's under a lot of stress.
      Instead: She doesn't bother at all, earning Twilight's suspicions which leads to everything above. Granted, Chrysalis probably didn't have enough time to properly study Cadance's behavior and mannerisms, but she could've at least not acted rude!
      Even Worse: Much of her rudeness involved criticizing things related to the wedding ceremony - something she had absolutely no reason to care about. The ceremony to her was nothing more than a means to an end, and most of what she complained about wouldn't even have happened if her evil plan had succeeded.
    • In Part 2, Twilight and the real Cadance start making their escape from the Canterlot Caves.
      You'd Also Think: Chrysalis would have brainwashed some of Shining Armor's high-ranking guards just to ensure that Twilight and Cadance have no chance of getting out of there.
      Instead: She leaves the cave guarded by bridesmaids. Twilight proves their incompetence by tossing a bouquet at them which they promptly fight over.
    • Later on in Part 2, the Changelings successfully apprehend Twilight and her friends from getting to the Elements of Harmony. They are then brought to the Changeling queen, Chrysalis.
      You'd Think: Queen Chrysalis would imprison Twilight and her friends in a cocoon just like Celestia, so that she would not able to free Cadance from the cocoon goop and break the mind control spell on Shining Armor. And then Chrysalis would win. The End.
      Instead: Chrysalis doesn't even bother trying to imprison Twilight, and she gets caught up in her Villain Song reprisal, allowing Twilight to free Cadance and have her be able to break the mind control spell on Shining Armor, and eventually Cadance and Shining Armor get Chrysalis and her Changelings blasting off again!
    • And the above moment where Chrysalis lets Twilight free Cadance leads to even more idiocy, as Cadance then cures Shining Armor, and uses her love to power his spell.
      You'd Think: Chrysalis would realize that since Shining Armor's love was able to give her enough power to defeat Celestia, she'd try to stop them, imprison all the ponies, and then conquer Equestria unhindered.
      Instead: She says "What a lovely but ridiculous sentiment." What do you know, The Power of Love wins.

    Season 3 
  • "Too Many Pinkie Pies":
    • Pinkie Pie has brought numerous clones of herself from the Mirror Pool. The clones are clearly more hyperactive with the original deeply regretting ever bringing them to Ponyville.
      You'd Expect: The rest of the Mane Six to catch on and figure out that the real Pinkie Pie is not behaving like the others.
      Or: Since none of the clones have the memory of the real Pinkie Pie, they can ward off any impostors by quizzing them on facts and trivia that only the real Pinkie would know.
      Instead: Neither of them can tell the real Pinkie Pie from the others so they hold a Watching Paint Dry contest with the clones. One that just happened to be the real Pinkie Pie's idea, even.
  • "One Bad Apple":
    • This episode introduces Babs Seed, a cousin of the Apples whom unbeknownst to Apple Bloom is being bullied in her hometown of Manehattan for not having a cutie mark.
      You'd Expect: Applejack to tell the Cutie Mark Crusaders about this so they can be more accommodating to Babs.
      Instead: She doesn't for fear that Babs will feel singled out. This causes the CMC, who are obsessed with getting their cutie marks, to immediately start pestering Babs about her blank flank from the get go. Babs becomes so uncomfortable with this that she finds solace with Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon and the three gang up on the Crusaders.
    • Sweetie Belle wants to tell Applejack about Babs' bullying, but Apple Bloom and Scootaloo don't want to for fear of being marked as snitches.
      You'd Think: Sweetie Belle would tell Applejack anyway. Or at least tell Rarity so she can speak to Applejack about it.
      Instead: She just follows Apple Bloom's lead and things go downhill from there.
    • The Cutie Mark Crusaders eventually withdraw their plans for revenge when Applejack tells them about Babs' bullying problems at home. They attempt do this by pulling close to Babs' float with one driven by Pinkie Pie. Before they can warn her, Babs rams into Pinkie Pie's float which crashes.
      You'd Expect: Pinkie Pie, who is now a witness and a victim to Babs' bullying, to ask why she would do such a thing. At the very worst, she could warn Applejack and her friends at once about Babs.
      Instead: She does nothing, leaving the CMC to stop Babs on their own.
    • Ultimately, the CMC save Babs from the sabotaged parade float and the group make amends. Applejack then leads the CMC to the train station so they can bid farewell to Babs. Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon show up.
      You'd Expect: With the presence of Applejack that Diamond and Silver would stay out of the picture.
      Instead: Upset with Babs leaving, Diamond starts teasing the CMC. Surprisingly, Babs is the one who calls her out on it and threatens to tell her mother and Silver Spoon's if their teasing continues.
    • In that same scenario...
      You'd Expect: Applejack to be the one telling them off, especially after the CMC had experienced enough bullying as it is.
      Instead : She stands there not doing a single thing except glare.
  • “Magic Duel”:
    • Trixie is confronted with, what seems to be, a more powerful amulet than the Alicorn amulet.
      You’d Expect: For her to put on both and gain near-unlimited power.
      Instead: Trixie takes the old one off. She loses the battle quickly.
    • Now that the Alicorn Amulet has been swiped from her, Trixie is harmless, so can’t hurt anypony with magic anymore. Twilight takes the time to explain how the elaborate ruse was pulled off.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to—effortlessly, as shown when she actually bothers to do so—put Pinkie’s mouth back on, especially considering she specifically refers to Pinkie, who is standing literally a few feet away. And let’s not forget that Pinkie just helped overthrow Trixie and bring Twilight home.
      Instead: She waits until ages later at the end of the episode.
  • "Just for Sidekicks":
    • Spike has a repeated moment that pretty much sets up the plot. In the beginning, he has gathered a bucket of gems in preparation for a cake.
      You'd Expect: Spike to keep the gems in a safe place or have Twilight hide them so he won't be tempted to eat them while mixing the ingredients.
      Instead: He leaves them out in the open and, not surprisingly, munches on them as he's preparing the batter. By the time he's ready to bake the cake, he's run out of gems.
      To Make Matters Worse: By the end of the episode, Spike is down to half a gem but he eats it just as he's ready to bake the cake again!
    • Spike, the pets and the Cutie Mark Crusaders are in the Crystal Empire and have to get back to Ponyville before the Mane Six discover that they're missing. Spike stops a fidgeting Angel from seeing Fluttershy when he causes a distraction with a luggage cart.
      You'd Expect: Spike and the Crusaders to lay low with the pets until the Mane Six get on the train before hopping onto another car.
      Instead: Spike drags Angel onto the train first with the Crusaders and the pets following. They all have to hide beneath the seats when the Mane Six step into their car. They escape detection by the skin of their teeth when Winona's barking, Angel threatening to kick Applejack's seat and Spike's Growling Gut threaten to blow their cover.
    • On the other side of the coin, Applejack gets one when Spike tries to quiet down Winona's barking.
      You'd Expect: Applejack to recognize her own dog and check below her seat, catching Spike and the other stowaways in the process.
      Instead: She ignores Winona and gets so excited about going home that she only says, "Whoo-wee! My dogs are barkin'! Did ya'll hear that, they really are!"
  • "Games Ponies Play":
    • The Mane Six are sent to greet the Equestrian Games Inspector. They don't have much of a physical description aside from her luggage. They find somepony matching that incredibly vague description.
      You'd Think: They'd at least greet her by her name.
      Instead: They don't, and spend the entire episode touring with some random mare. It's only by Deus ex Machina that the games inspector didn't get fed up by the random splashings and went to the exact same spa and talked to the same pony who got the greeting she was supposed to get that she based her decision to let the Equestria Games be there that year.
    • One of the Crystal Empire attendants gives a description of the Equestrian Games Inspector.
      You'd Think: In addition to name, they'd have a semi-detailed and useful description, like pony race, fur color, and Cutie Mark.
      Instead: They get a name and the description of her luggage. That's it. The first mare they see with that luggage, they immediately assume she's the Games Inspector.

    Season 4 
  • In Part 2 of "Princess Twilight Sparkle", the Mane Six are in the Everfree Forest in search of the Tree of Harmony. Twilight's new wings prevent her from escaping from a cragadile so her friends step in and save her. Applejack suggests that Twilight go back to Ponyville because with Celestia and Luna gone and with Princess Cadance in the Crystal Empire, she is too important for Equestria to lose.
    You'd Expect: Twilight and her friends to ignore Applejack's request because she along with the rest of the Mane Six are bearers of the Elements of Harmony. Also, they will need her magic and knowledge to save the Tree of Harmony no matter the cost. If her role as the last Equestrian princess is truly that vital, Twilight should at least hand her element of Magic over to them first so that they can actually save the Tree of Harmony before retreating to safety.
    Instead: The rest of the Mane Six agree with Applejack on the sole purpose that they need Twilight to rule as Equestria's last remaining princess. Twilight agrees and takes her crown and therefore the element of Magic with her instead, effectively rendering the whole quest a "Shaggy Dog" Story as they are now missing an element. She doesn't realize her importance to the quest until Discord talks some sense into her. The rest of the Mane Six only see how much they need Twilight when they can't restore the tree without her help.
  • "Castle Mane-ia": Rainbow Dash and Applejack try to prove their courage by spending the night in the Castle of the Two Sisters which they believe is haunted. Also, Rarity hears about the castle's tapestries and plans on taking them to her shop where she can restore them to their former glory.
    You'd Expect: All three ponies to come to Twilight first and make sure what they're doing is safe. Ignoring the rumors that the castle could be haunted, it's over 1,000 years old and is likely falling apart. Plus as we saw in the previous episode, Twilight witnessed the castle being partially destroyed the night Celestia banished her sister to the moon. They could have Celestia send Twilight some general floor plans and warn them of any potential booby traps. At the very worst in Rarity's case, she can maybe inspect the tapestries in the daytime.
    Instead: They do no such thing and head for the potentially dangerous castle just after sundown. Fluttershy, who comes along with Rarity, lampshades this to her before they even get there.
  • In "Flight to the Finish", Rainbow Dash is warned to be "professional" and "collected".
    You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash to figure out that this means she has to act mature and responsible.
    Instead: She decides to imitate Harshwhinny's strict demeanor.
  • In "Power Ponies", the Mane-iac just froze and captured the ponies, leaving just Spike left.
    You'd Think: That the Mane-iac would also freeze and capture Spike, just in the off chance he does manage to turn the fight around. Even though he doesn't have any super powers, he almost managed to steal the source of her secret weapon that would've defeated the Power Ponies for good.
    Instead: She lets him go, thinking that he's powerless, and soon has to suffer the consequences.
  • "Rarity Takes Manehattan":
    • Rarity realizes that she only has ten minutes to get to the fashion show auditions. The show is being held across town, and both Rarity and her dress line need to be there on time, or she'll be disqualified. The dialogue throughout the scene indicates that it is currently rush hour in Manehattan.
      You'd Think: Somepony would remember that Twilight Sparkle can teleport over long distances at will if she doesn't feel like pulling rank and Rainbow Dash can reach light-shattering flight speeds from a standstill on demand. Either one of them could get Rarity and her line to the fashion show within seconds, giving Rarity a few minutes to regain her composure before entering.
      Instead: They waste time trying to get a taxi for her, and then send the bellhop from an earlier scene to deliver the dresses. Rarity makes it into the audition and escapes losing her spot in the contest by the skin of her teeth.
    • After the audition, Rarity meets a fellow seamstress who takes an interest in Rarity's entry.
      You'd Expect: Rarity to keep her trade secrets to herself, especially when she's using them to compete with other ponies present and within earshot.
      Instead: She gushes in detail over her hard work, shows off the special fabric she's counting on to win the contest, and then lends the entire roll she brought with her to Suri. This gives Suri enough of the fabric to perfectly replicate Rarity’s entry overnight. When Rarity tries to confront her, Suri blackmails her to keep her from reporting her plagiarism to the judges.
    • Later on, Rarity is distraught after her original entry was plagiarized. Suddenly, she hits upon an idea for an impromptu replacement. The Mane Six then go to work, but soon realize that helping Rarity will jeopardize their plans to see Hinny In The Hills.
      You'd Expect: For them to shrug it off and keep working. Rarity is already under pressure and on a hair-trigger temper, and three of the Mane Six have connections to get them a later showing.
      Instead: They complain, and Rarity goes nuclear on them.
  • "Pinkie Apple Pie":
    • The Apples and Pinkie Pie wonder if they're related by setting off on a trip to visit Goldie Delicious. They put Big Macintosh in charge of loading the wagon.
      You'd Expect: Big Macintosh to pack only the essentials for their trip since it's implied that Goldie doesn't live too far from Ponyville.
      Instead: He overloads the wagon and insists to Applejack that it's strong enough to hold their belongings. Just after they reach the halfway point, the wheels break off.
    • So the Apples build a makeshift raft out of their wagon and ride it down a river. Eventually, the group comes across a three-way fork and Applejack asks for the map so she can figure out which way to take. Apple Bloom comes up with it.
      You'd Expect: Apple Bloom to give Applejack the map.
      Instead: In her exuberance for finding the map, she carelessly tosses it around until she accidentally drops it overboard. With the group now without a way to tell where they are headed, Applejack lampshades this to Apple Bloom.
      "All you had to do was bring it to me. No singin', no dancin', no games. Just walk it over!"
  • In "Somepony to Watch Over Me", Apple Bloom becomes fed up with Applejack's babying. She has Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo take her place while she sneaks out of her house to fulfill Applejack's order on her own. Applejack walks to Apple Bloom's room to check on her.
    You'd Expect: Applejack to immediately recognize Sweetie Belle in Apple Bloom's bed just by looking at her. Sweetie Belle has a pink and purple mane and a white coat while Apple Bloom has a red mane and a yellow coat.
    Instead: She doesn't realize that Sweetie Belle has taken Apple Bloom's place until Scootaloo accidentally blows their cover. This after it was implied that Applejack apparently checked the bed over a hundred times!
  • "Leap of Faith" has even more stupidity from the Apples and the Film Flam brothers.
    • It starts when Flim and Flam come to Ponyville again and promote their miracle tonic. They test it out on a volunteer in the audience who gains his strength back. Then, Granny Smith buys some and it cures her fear of drowning. A suspicious Applejack checks out the Film Flam brothers' tent where the volunteer, Silver Shill, is revealed to be an actor. The brothers then inadvertently reveal that their tonic is nothing more than apple juice and beet leaves.
      You'd Expect: Applejack to tell Granny Smith at once that their miracle tonic is a fake before she gets injured trying to pull off something dangerous.
      Instead: Applejack, not wanting to hurt Granny Smith's feelings, buys into their lie that Granny Smith has never felt younger, and doesn't tell her about the fake tonic.
      Later On: Flim and Flam continue to promote their tonic at the Ponyville Swim Meet.
      You'd Expect: The brothers to leave Applejack and Silver Shill out of their plans. Applejack now knows the truth about their product and bringing Silver Shill could make the townsponies even more suspicious.
      Instead: They hire both of them to pitch the tonic with Silver Shill continuing to demonstrate it and Applejack hesitantly rattling off its benefits. Applejack already knows how bad of an idea it is but then she sees Granny Smith about to perform a risky high-diving jump. She rushes off to lasso her from the platform just in time and confronts the brothers.
      You'd Then Expect: Flim and Flam to open up about their tonic, saying that it has its limits and that ponies shouldn't try doing anything extreme after trying some. At the very worst, they might lose some customers but others would figure out that the tonic can't do everything they say it can, therefore stopping them from trying ridiculous stunts.
      Instead: They egg Granny Smith on and tell her she could have made that jump, despite somepony of Granny's structure clearly not being able to do so safely.
      Eventually: This causes Applejack to announce that the brothers' tonic is a fake.
      You'd Then Expect: Flim and Flam to drop the act on their product at once.
      Instead: They try to defend their tonic by saying it boosts confidence. Just like last time, the brothers have to skip town.
  • "Inspiration Manifestation":
    • The beginning of the episode has Rarity building a puppet show theater for the Ponyville Foal and Filly Fair.
      You'd Expect: Rarity to design her theater for the puppeteer in mind, provided that she has a description of what he looks like and the kinds of puppets the he uses for his show.
      You'd Also Expect: The puppeteer to take a look through Rarity's usual line of work which will give himself an idea of what he could expect. Also, he can tell her what kind of show he plans to use so she can design the theater accordingly.
      Instead: Rarity's first design is entirely based on form over function and is too small to accommodate the puppeteer's size. Also, the puppeteer apparently doesn't give Rarity any more of a description than "traveling puppet theater", leading to Rarity carrying her usual style over to the structure.
    • Spike takes a spell book out of the Castle of the Royal Pony Sisters to inspire Rarity, despite all of the warning signs and being told by Owlowicious not to do so.
      You'd Expect: Spike to listen to the owl and think of a way to inspire Rarity without using magic or maybe bring the book to Twilight first to make sure what he's doing is safe.
      Instead: He ignores the owl's pleas and takes it directly to Rarity.
      So: Spike shows her the "Inspiration Manifestation" spell.
      You'd Then Expect: That Rarity, even in her creative funk, would be suspicious of said spell and think for a moment that Spike's attempt to get her back in the swing of things could have serious consequences.
      Instead: She casts the spell and proceeds to wreak havoc in Ponyville.
      You'd Then Expect: During Rarity's earlier attempts to "improve" Ponyville, for Spike to point out just how impractical some of Rarity's improvements (i.e. giving Rainbow Dash a dress that prevents her from doing her job handling the weather; fancying a party that's clearly intended for children) are, thus freeing Rarity from the spell before things get too out of hand.
      Instead: Spike puts his feelings for Rarity over the flaws in her works and doesn't finally give her the much-needed criticism until after she made a complete mess of Ponyville (to the point that it took three princesses to clean it up) and plotted to do the same in other cities.
  • "Equstria Games":
    • Spike has been tasked with lighting the Equestria Games torch after saving the Crystal Empire from King Sombra. Ms. Harshwhinny accompanies him but he gets stage fright upon seeing the tens of thousands of ponies gathered to see the event.
      You'd Expect: Ms. Harshwhinny to be supportive of Spike and either ask him what's wrong or give him some encouragement.
      Instead: She becomes impatient with Spike and yells at him to light the torch when he's clearly too jumpy to do so. Spike becomes unable to breathe fire out of nervousness so Twilight lights the torch instead. When she tells her that she did it for him, Spike's confidence deflates in a heartbeat.
    • Later on, Spike tries to make up for his flame-out by singing an anthem after one of the events. He rushes off to tell Shining Armor.
      You'd Expect: Shining Armor to inform Spike before he volunteers that the winner of the event, Cloudsdale, has its anthem sung. This would give Spike the chance to back out since he doesn't know the words.
      Instead: He doesn't say this until after he announces to the crowd that Spike will perform the Cloudsdale anthem. Spike gets forced to improvise the lyrics, and he receives several glares from the ponies in the stands.
  • "Twilight's Kingdom":
    • In Part 1, Tirek has escaped from Tartarus and Celestia sends Discord to catch him. Discord can sense the magical imbalance that comes when Tirek steals a pony's magic.
      You'd Think: She'd also send somepony more trustworthy to accompany him, like Fluttershy. After all, despite claiming to have been reformed, he's been shown to still be pretty amoral and hard to control.
      Instead: She sends him alone. While he does catch Tirek easily, it only takes a quick talk to bring on a Face–Heel Turn.
    • Later, in Part 2, Tirek has grown in power and the princesses decide to transfer their magic into Twilight to stop him from getting it.
      You'd Think: Celestia would tell Twilight to go into hiding and take her friends with her until she decides what to do. After all, Tirek can find out about Twilight from Discord, and even without that Tirek's hunting down all ponies anyway.
      Instead: Not only does Celestia not instruct Twilight to do this, she forbids her from even telling her friends anything's wrong, banking entirely on Tirek not knowing who Twilight is, despite the points mentioned above. Predictably, Tirek captures Twilight's friends within minutes of learning of their existence, and uses them as a bargaining chip when it looks like Twilight can beat him.
      Even Worse: Even without those factors, the Princesses do nothing about the giant stained glass window of Twilight's coronation in the throne room where they are literally waiting to be caught, even though their entire plan revolves around Tirek not knowing that a fourth princess exists.
    • After Twilight and Tirek have their climatic showdown against each other and it becomes obvious the two are evenly matched, Tirek decides to use her friends and Discord as hostages, and agrees to let them go if she surrenders her powers to him (to which she agrees).
      You'd Expect: For Tirek to immediately go back on his word, and either keep Twilight's friends as leverage, or capture Twilight in the same bubble prison her friends are in. Even if Twilight and every other pony is powerless to stop him, no sense in letting a potential threat and powerful enemy loose, right? Problem Solved, Series Over.
      Instead: Tirek keeps his word; he absorbs Twilight's powers, and he releases his hostages. This allows Discord to give Twilight the final key to the chest at the Tree of Harmony, awakening greater powers, and defeating Tirek once and for all.
      Even Worse: After releasing Twilight's friends, Tirek has plenty of time to crush them like bugs, but doesn't bother with it.

    Season 5 
  • "The Cutie Map - Part 2":
    • Starlight Glimmer tears off the Mane Six's cutie marks and subjects them to brainwashing.
      You'd Expect: That since the Mane Six came all at once as a team, Starlight would separate them into different buildings so they wouldn't plot to go against her.
      Instead: She keeps them all in the same room, causing them to come up with a plan to duck the brainwashing and reveal her intentions through Fluttershy.
      You'd Then Expect: Starlight to keep the cutie marks in a safe so they can't be retrieved.
      Instead: She holds them in fragile glass.
    • Later on, Starlight Glimmer has just been exposed as a Hypocrite by Fluttershy, showing she still has her original cutie mark when she'd been taking everypony else's away in the name of equality. The townspeople are distraught, and demand an explanation from Starlight.
      You'd Expect: That Starlight would calmly explain that she needs her magic to take the cutie marks away (which is true), while also professing that she's trying to follow the philosophy she created. Even if Starlight has to keep her cutie mark, she's still showing a bond with the villagers by painting an equal sign over her cutie mark with make-up. Starlight could also recite the fact that the town has been perfectly peaceful since they accepted her way.
      Instead: Starlight immediately calls the townspeople fools and berates them all in a Motive Rant at the top of her lungs. And when one of them makes a snide remark, Starlight's horn glows, obviously preparing to attack him. Though Starlight manages to interrupt Twilight's Kirk Summation with a Big "QUIET!", the townspeople turn on Starlight, and her entire scheme crumbles.
  • "Castle Sweet Castle":
    • Twilight has been working herself to the point of exhaustion to avoid having to go home to her castle, which simply doesn't feel like home to her. The rest of the Mane Six offer to make it feel more like home, and send Spike to take Twilight to the spa to keep her busy. When he returns early, the others have done a terrible job and ask him to keep Twilight occupied until sunset.
      You'd Expect: Spike to simply explain to Twilight that the redecoration is taking longer than expected and that her friends have requested until sunset to finish up.
      Instead: He makes up random things to do to waste time. This results in him being forced to endure a painful massage from Bulk Biceps and drive himself insane shopping for a new bed.
    • Then there's the rest of the Mane Six and their attempts to decorate the castle.
      You'd Expect: They'd keep in mind Twilight's old home at Golden Oak Library right from the get go and use their memories of it to help them with the re-decoration.
      Instead: The Mane Five not only decorate the castle based on their own preference of what a perfect home for them would be like, but they also focus their re-decorating on just the Mane Hall (i. e. the one with the "Cutie Map"). They do eventually learn from their mistakes (and compromise on their personal decoration preferences by adding small touches to the other rooms while having the Mane Room focus on one big memorial piece using the roots of the library), but still, after four seasons of knowing Twilight, you'd think they'd know better than that when it came to their initial re-decoration attempt.
  • In "Tanks for the Memories", Rainbow Dash sneaks into the weather factory with Tank in an effort to stop winter from coming to Ponyville. She finds the water-making machine and figures she can drain its clouds before it can bring Ponyville any snow. The only thing stopping her from doing so is Tank's sleepiness which is causing erratic flight.
    You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash to try to ground Tank to a secure place so she can carry out her plan without him interfering.
    Instead: She ties Tank to a magnifying glass which easily breaks off while she's tampering the machines. The glass lodges into a fan and triggers a chain reaction of chaos in the factory. Rainbow Dash and Tank eventually get sucked into a giant snowball which crashes into Ponyville.
  • "Appleoosa's Most Wanted":
    • The town is threatened by Trouble Shoes, a perceived outlaw who has gained notoriety for ruining rodeos. Despite the scare, Sheriff Silverstar announces the rodeo will go on as planned, albeit with heightened security. This worries Applejack who is competing in place of an injured Braeburn. Since the Cutie Mark Crusaders have accompanied her to Appleoosa, she considers dropping out of the rodeo and sending them back to Ponyville. Braeburn convinces her that things will be fine and offers to watch over the CMC.
      You'd Expect: Applejack to ignore Braeburn's request and go with her plan to take the Cutie Mark Crusaders back home. If she wanted them to stay in Appleoosa, she could keep a close eye on them herself. Not only does Braeburn have zero babysitting experience, the Crusaders are prone to wandering off which Applejack scolded them for earlier in the episode. Above all, he has previously injured his foreleg and needs his rest.
      Instead: She allows Braeburn to gain the upper hand in their argument and the Crusaders are left in his care. Braeburn turns out to be a pushover and the Crusaders wait until after he falls asleep to sneak out.
    • Later on, Trouble Shoes is arrested and the Crusaders attempt to bust him out with Sheriff Silverstar on patrol. Apple Bloom calls to him that he's missing the bale stacking event at the rodeo.
      You'd Expect: The sheriff to find somepony to watch Trouble Shoes' cell while he leaves to watch the event.
      Instead: He doesn't and with nopony guarding the cell, the Crusaders free Trouble Shoes.
  • "Princess Spike":
    • Canterlot hosts the Grand Equestrian Pony Summit where delegates are invited from cities all across Equestria. Two major decisions regarding the planning later turn it into disaster, starting with the landscaping.
      You'd Expect: The ponies in charge to have the water main fixed and to have the dragonsneeze trees trimmed well before the summit begins.
      Instead: They choose to have both of these jobs done the day of the summit which doesn't bode well for the workers when Spike orders them to be cancelled.
      Also: There's the actual planning of the summit.
      You'd Expect: The princesses to share duties for the planning, lest they risk somepony getting overworked.
      Instead: Twilight gets saddled with all the work and doesn't get a wink of sleep for three days. She becomes too exhausted to perform any duties for the summit's events and decides to sleep it off.
      So: Twilight tasks Spike with keeping the bedroom quiet while she sleeps.
      You'd Expect: Spike to close the window which he realizes is open once a bird flies in. If any commotion outside becomes too much for Twilight, he can invest in a pair of earmuffs.
      Instead: He feels the need to cancel a polo game, interrupt a groundskeeper from trimming dragonsneeze trees and stop another pony from fixing a water main that's ready to burst.
      What Makes It Worse: This becomes more glaring when it turns out that two episodes later in "Amending Fences", Twilight can conjure a sound-proof shield with her magic, therefore providing another reason for Spike not to demand peace and quiet from other ponies.
    • Also, there's the matter of Spike's shoddy advice to the delegates who wish to see Twilight.
      You'd Expect: Twilight or one of the other princesses to give Spike more specific instructions about what to do if somepony wanted to see Twilight, such as have him redirect the ponies to one of the other princesses.
      Or: For either of the princesses to post guards outside of Twilight's room rather than have Spike watch over her.
      Instead: Nothing of the sort happens and Spike "helps" everypony on his own merits, claiming they're by order of Princess Twilight. Cadance becomes suspicious of Spike's executive actions but she isn't confirmed until a freak accident involving the dragonsneeze trees and the water main causes the main hall to flood.
    • Then there's Spike who gears up a sneeze thanks to coming in contact with dragonsneeze flowers. He happens to be standing right next to a giant statue made of gems provided by Equestria's delegates.
      You'd Expect: Spike to either turn or run away from the statue before sneezing.
      Instead: He stays put and sneezes directly on the statue, causing it to break apart.
      To Make Matters Worse: Spike is given a bouquet of dragonsneeze flowers as a present for helping rebuild the statue. Just as the episode ends, he's ready to sneeze on the statue again.
  • "Party Pooped": When Prince Rutherford of Yakyakistan and his followers declare war on Ponyville, Pinkie decides to go to Yakyakistan to find something they like.
    You'd Expect: Pinkie to leave a note for her friends saying where she’s going.
    Instead: She doesn’t, and her friends have no idea why she disappeared.
    Then: Pinkie finally reaches Yakyakistan, but suddenly the snow below her sled starts to break under her.
    You'd Expect: Pinkie to quickly jump off the sled.
    Instead: She stays where she is, and as a result, the sled starts zooming back the way she came.
    You'd THEN Expect: Pinkie to jump off the sled at any time and run back to Yakyakistan.
    Instead: She stays put on the sled, crying “NOOOO!” all the way until she slides all the way back to Ponyville.
  • "Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep?": Luna recruits the Mane Six in their help into fighting the Tantabus, a monster who turns dreams into nightmares.
    • Luna actually created the Tantabus to remind herself why she can never be forgiven, night after night. It makes her remember Nightmare Moon, and how she hurt ponies.
      You'd Expect: Luna to tell the six immediately where the Tantabus came from: her own guilt and need to punish. Since it's her responsibility, they ought to know exactly what they're confronting. It's revealed that if the Mane Six had helped her with the baggage earlier, the Tantabus wouldn't have gotten so powerful.
      Instead: Luna insists that she fight the Tantabus in the Mane Six's dreams, without addressing her baggage directly, and keeps saying she doesn't want to cause more harm. She only reveals its origins at the climax of the episode, when the Mane Six realize that her guilt makes it bigger and stronger, and it nearly enters the waking world.
    • Tantabus can only spread into other ponies' dreams if Luna and the Mane Six dream about other ponies.
      You'd Think: Luna would inform the Mane Six of that before they go to sleep, so that they could do their best to avoid involving other ponies in their dreams.
      Instead: She neglects to mention that particular detail.
      As a Result: Pinkie Pie dreams of sharing ice cream with all of Ponyville and the entire town is dragged into fighting the Tantabus!
  • "Canterlot Boutique":
    • Rarity decides to open a new shop in Canterlot when the location she desires becomes available. Since she obviously can't be in two shops at once, she hires a manager who can run the shop when she's at her home base in Ponyville. She goes with Sassy, a pony with an impressive resume. Rarity likes to make specialty dresses, ideally new ones for each pony though she is willing to do multiple orders of the same design.
      You'd Expect: That she and Sassy during the interview would discuss these matters, and Rarity would instruct her in the rules of Rarity, about making each dress special.
      Instead: Apparently this never comes up. Rarity then gets blindsided when Sassy makes a number of changes without her consent, like renaming the boutique and the "Reign in Stain" dress. The only reason Rarity doesn't fire Sassy for insubordination is that she is generous and technically Sassy's ideas are working.
    • As for Sassy, she's managed dozens of boutiques, though it's implied that her Control Freak personality caused them to close down. Still, she is good at her job of drumming up business.
      You'd Expect: That with Rarity as her boss that Sassy would defer to her, rather than the other way around. Also you would expect that she talk with her about executive decisions before springing them onto the public.
      Instead: Sassy micromanages the "Canterlot Carousel," as she renames it, and changes multiple things the day that it opens. It gets to the point that she takes hundreds of dress orders for the "Princess Dress" that she's pushing, browbeats Rarity about filling them, points out that the customers don't want her specialized items, and eventually claims that it's "her" boutique. Rarity gets burned out from making hundreds of the same dress at once and nearly closes the shop.
  • In "Rarity Investigates!", Wind Rider concocts a plan to have Rainbow Dash banned from the Wonderbolts so he can keep his long-distance speed record unbroken. One of his steps involves buying a cake to distract the Royal Guards. However, his scarf gets stained with some chocolate icing on the cake.
    You'd Expect: Wind Rider to replace his scarf, which now contains incriminating evidence. At the very least, finding that stained scarf would have taken up valuable time and his discharge would have come at a cost.
    Instead: He ties the scarf in a windsor knot and Rarity discovers it immediately while she cracks the clues. Wind Rider is discharged from the Wonderbolts for framing Rainbow Dash.
  • In "Brotherhooves Social", Applejack has to miss participating in Sisterhooves Social and Apple Bloom is left devastated. Big Macintosh hears Granny Smith telling her that it shouldn't matter who her partner is as long as they both represent the spirit of the social.
    You'd Expect: Big Macintosh to check with the higher-ups and see if there is a rule about stallions participating in Sisterhooves Social. It wouldn't hurt to ask, considering Granny Smith never said Apple Bloom's participant explicitly has to be female.
    Instead: He goes through the trouble of dressing in drag and a wig and calling himself "Orchard Blossom" just so he can participate with Apple Bloom. This leads to another moment when the judges let him participate as such.
    You'd Then Expect: Somepony, whether it be the judges, Granny Smith, or an organizer, to pull Big Macintosh aside. They can explain that he doesn't have to compete as "Orchard Blossom", all while telling him he should just have fun with Apple Bloom instead of playing to win.
    Instead: Nopony does any such thing and Big Macintosh gets so hell-bent on winning the final race that he becomes a clear and present danger to Apple Bloom and the other teams. The judges don't even point this out until his unsportsmanlike conduct causes their disqualification, therefore putting the safety of his competitors at risk.
  • "Crusaders of the Lost Mark":
    • Spoiled Rich scolds Diamond Tiara for hanging out with the CMC and insults them in front of the entire school by calling them "Blank Flanks" and "confused, insignificant low lifes" in front of the students and more importantly, Cheerilee.
      You’d Expect: For Cheerilee to scold Spoiled Rich and even report her to the higher ups (Even if she has connections, there are others on the school board too).
      Instead: She does nothing, again!
    • Also, Spoiled Rich seems to be primarily motivated by a desire to reach and stay on the summit of the social ladder. Whether you think this goal is understandable or idiotic in and of itself...
      You'd Think: She would be encouraging her daughter to suck up to the three fillies who are students of the local princess and have older sisters (by blood or unofficial adoption) with thrones of their own in the castle of said princess.
      Instead: She tells her daughter to shun the CMC and insults them in public.
  • In the episode "What About Discord?", Twilight misses out on a weekend of fun with her friends and Discord. They share an inside joke with one-another, to which Twilight has trouble understanding why they'd think it's funny (all the while secretly stewing on how she missed out). She begins to suspect that Discord somehow brainwashed them into thinking they had fun when they really didn't, so she gets a potion from Zecora to break whatever spell has been cast on the others.
    You’d Expect: For Twilight to keep quiet about her intentions with her friends, and just serve them the potion (without saying it's a potion) to see if it has any effect on them.
    Instead: She outright states that she believes the others are under Discord's spell, and that the potion is supposed to break them out of it. This causes the others to call her out on accusing Discord of being evil and them of not being able to see if he was up to any wrongdoing.
  • In "The Hooffields and McColts", Twilight Sparkle and Fluttershy have been called to settle a conflict between the eponymous fighting families. Fluttershy suggests that they get one side to apologize so they go to Ma Hooffield, the Hooffields' matriarch, and the clan bakes large cake for the McColts.
    You’d Expect: Twilight and Fluttershy to be a bit suspicious about this since the cake is so large that several ponies can easily fit inside. Even while bringing the cake over, it's implied that Ma Hooffield didn't listen to a word Twilight said about forgiving her enemies.
    Instead: They help Ma Hooffield bring the cake over to the McColts anyway. When it seems the McColts are ready to start anew, the Hooffields burst out of the cake and attack them, setting off the brunt of the conflict.
  • "The Cutie Re-Mark"
    • In one Bad Future, Nightmare Moon has succeeded in banishing Celestia to the moon, and runs Canterlot with an iron fist. She finds out that time travel is possible thanks to seeing Twilight Sparkle, and wants Twilight to lead her to the necessary item. To ensure Twilight's cooperation, she chains up Spike and takes him hostage.
      You'd Expect: She would also chain up Twilight and make sure that she can't perform magic. Though in this timeline Twilight never weaponized teleportation against Nightmare Moon, Luna has known ancient wizards that could perform great feats.
      Instead: She lets Twilight lead her, a tied-up Spike, and Nightmare Moon's guards into the woods without restraint. Once Twilight reaches the tapestry, she teleports Spike to safety and returns to the past with him.
    • Starlight's Start of Darkness was Sunburst moving away.
      You'd Expect: Starlight to try to keep in touch or contact him.
      Instead: She apparently does nothing.
      Alternatively, if Starlight was so upset about Sunburst leaving, then...
      You'd Expect: Starlight to go back in time to stop Sunburst from getting a cutie mark.
      Instead: She does nothing of the sort.
    • Yet another character has moments of stupidity in the two-parter. In part one, Twilight Sparkle and Spike return to the castle from giving a presentation only to find Starlight Glimmer waiting for them. Upon their arrival, Starlight is sitting in wait for them and activates the Cutie Map via spell.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to immediately cast some sort of spell to incapacitate Starlight and therefore halt her scheme, then task Spike with writing a letter to Celestia informing her of an ex-dictatress who clearly poses a threat to all of Equestria.
      Instead: But then we'd have a short episode, so she does nothing but demand to know what Starlight is going to do. Starlight successfully casts Starswirl the Bearded's time travel spell which ends up sucking the three into Cloudsdale and the conflict begins.
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    Season 6 
  • "The Crystalling": The Mane Six, the princesses and Shining Armor are preparing the Crystal Empire for Flurry Heart's Crystalling. At the end of Part 1, Flurry Heart's crying has shattered the Crystal Heart and triggered a wave of ice and snow towards the Crystal Empire. The princesses make it clear at the beginning of Part 2 that anypony inside the Crystal Empire at the moment will be frozen solid if they don't act fast.
    You’d Expect: The group to warn everypony about the impending danger immediately and split duties between evacuating the empire as soon as possible and looking for a spell that can put the Crystal Heart back together.
    Instead: They decide not let the public know about the Crystal Heart and tell the residents to hide indoors for fear that it will cause a panic. When Fluttershy, Rainbow Dash and Applejack explain this to the waiting ponies, they are accused of stalling the ceremony and are not taken seriously.
  • In "The Gift of the Maud Pie", after Pinkie learns that the the store containing the rock bag she wanted to get for Maud is closed due to the owner being on vacation, Rarity eventually informs Pinkie that she saw another pony with the same bag design as the one Pinkie wanted to get.
    You'd Expect: For Pinkie to let Rarity finish what she was going to say, which was likely going to be about where he got the bag, with Pinkie then hopefully getting information on another store (one that is open) that has the bag for sale.
    Instead: Pinkie doesn't let Rarity finish her statement, rushes to confront the pony with the bag, and asks if she can buy it for him, with the pony, being the hustler that he is, willing to give it to her... in exchange for her beloved Party Cannon.
  • In "Gauntlet of Fire", Twilight and Rarity’s dragon disguise falls of and Garble catches them, having them cornered.
    You'd Expect: For Twilight and Rarity to use their magic to teleport away or defend themselves, or Twilight to fly away while taking Rarity with her.
    Instead: They do nothing, though Ember flies in last minute to help them.
  • In "Newbie Dash", Rainbow Dash makes a terrible first impression on the Wonderbolts by nearly getting ran over on the runway and crashing into a trash can. The Wonderbolts give her the Embarrassing Nickname "Rainbow Crash" as a result, but the name brings back bad memories of her time in flight school, thus it harms her performance.
    You'd Expect: For Rainbow Dash to open up and let her new wingmates know that the name has some bad connections to her past and to cut it out — the Wonderbolts look up to Rainbow Dash as much as she does them, so they could easily understand. Conversely, the Wonderbolts could realize something was wrong and let Rainbow Dash know what's up. Even more, the Mane Six tell Rainbow Dash to treat the Wonderbolts like how they treat each other, like a team of friends.
    Instead: Rainbow Dash's pride gets the better of her and she decides the best way to fix this is to force a new nickname. Her stunts confuse and anger her new wingmates and puts them in danger before Rainbow Dash finally speaks up. She's still punished for her actions, however.
  • In "Saddle Row Review", Rarity opens her new store in Manehattan.
    You'd Expect: For Rarity to have finished her opening preparations well in advance of opening night, preferably about a month or so.
    Instead: Rarity puts it off until the morning the place is supposed to open.
  • In "Spice Up Your Life", Rarity and Pinkie Pie are summoned by the newly-reactivated Cutie Map to go to Canterlot to help a father and daughter keep their struggling family restaurant, the Tasty Treat afloat. While Pinkie is already impressed with the food and wants them to keep being unique, Rarity (initially) hopes to impress a renowned food critic named Zesty Gourmand so that the place can get her coveted three-hoof rating, as all the other eateries on Restaurant Row have it as well. However, Zesty is later revealed to be a snooty and controlling Caustic Critic who claims that nopony should eat at the Tasty Treat because it has no rating. Pinkie and Rarity quickly call her out on this.
    You'd Expect: Zesty to at least give the Tasty Treat a chance, because as Rarity puts it, "Ignoring a fresh and unique establishment such as this could do serious damage to your social standing."
    Instead: She simply leaves in a huff, just because the restaurant is not serving food that she likes.
  • "The Cart Before the Ponies":
    • The CMC have the chance to race in the annual Applewood Derby, and enlist the help of the older mares to build their karts.
      You'd Expect: For each filly go to the appropriate pony for the kart they want to build. (ie. Apple Bloom & Rainbow Dash -> Fastest; Scootaloo & Rarity -> Most Creative; Sweetie Belle & Applejack -> Most Traditional).
      You'd Also Expect The older mares to listen to the fillies' ideas and allow them to contribute as well.
      Instead: The CMC go straight to their respective elders, who each end up taking over the kart building projects and even forcing the fillies, who are supposed to be the drivers, into the passenger seats. Soon enough, a massive collision occurs; and RD, Rarity, and AJ get thoroughly chewed out for ruining the Derby for everypony.
    • The pony in charge of setting up the Applewood Derby's track deserves a special mention as it directly leads to the resulting moment above.
      You'd Expect: At best, for the race path to be circular or linear. If any roads cross, they could be fixed with bridges and/or tunnels.
      Instead: The course is a figure eight layout which not only intersects at the center, it also overlaps two major Ponyville roads. Predictably, multiple racers crash at the exact spot where every point meets.
  • In "28 Pranks Later" The ponies band together to prank Rainbow Dash with a frightening albeit long-winded zombie-apocalypse scenario and make her believe she zombified them with joke cookies.
    You'd Expect: For Rainbow to sense something's amiss as the prank directed at her has a hole in its logic: You can't zombify anybody by having them eat a bunch of cookies. The worst that could happen is that they get a stomachache or a sugar rush, both of which could lead to their prank backfiring. Granted, Rainbow Dash would not have learned not to prank so much, but it's likely even she could see through their facade.
    Instead: She falls for it, leading to the events of the episode's third-half.
  • In "P.P.O.V. (Pony Point of View)", Rarity, Applejack, and Pinkie Pie are going on a boat trip together, and each mare has plans to help the others "get out of their element": Rarity wants to give AJ and Pinkie a luxury cruise, Applejack wants to have a high seas adventure, and Pinkie brings along games and snacks make things more fun.
    You'd Expect: They would communicate each of their ideas to each other, so that they can combine them and all have fun at once.
    Instead: Rarity, AJ and Pinkie don't think to talk about their ideas at all, instead thinking that the other was trying to ruin the trip for them. This also leads to a chain of events that ends with their boat getting capsized by way of three-horned bunyip, the three mares blaming each other, and each giving different accounts as to what happened until Twilight and Spike step in and clear things up.
  • "To Where and Back Again":
    • Queen Chrysalis and her changeling army kidnap and replace the Mane Six, Spike, the royal sisters, and the crystal family, with the intent of bringing the love they will get back to her.
      You'd Expect: For Chrysalis to have gone the extra mile to ensure her plan doesn't go awry, and kidnap (or at least try to kidnap) any others that might stand in her way (such as a powerful unicorn pony, the embodiment of chaos itself, and a changeling turncoat who knows of the secret of her throne). And then when Starlight is the only one left, knock her out. Problem Solved, Series Over.
      Instead: Chrysalis doesn't bother to search for them, even taunting that Starlight Glimmer wasn't worth replacing. Guess what happens.
    • Discord is split from the group, then just happens to find Fluttershy. He immediately recognizes that this is a trap, even lampshading it, so clearly he isn't fooled. Then, dozens of Fluttershys show up, crying at him that "I'm the real Fluttershy!"
      You'd Expect: Seeing as how Discord just recognized that the changelings are trying to mess with him, he'd see that this is yet another trick and ignore them. In all likelihood, none of them are the real Fluttershy, and the real one is still being held prisoner somewhere.
      Instead: Discord is completely paralyzed, and lets himself get captured by the changelings. Then again, they might have broken him...
    • When the dust settles, the good guys are free, the Changelings have turned face, and Starlight offers the hoof of friendship to Queen Chrysalis, who rejects her, swears revenge, and makes a break for it.
      You'd Expect: For somepony to shoot or bash her out of the sky with their infinite magical powers, reality-warping abilities, or faster-than-sound flying speed. Especially considering how she nearly conquered Equestria twice already (thrice if you count the comics as canon).
      Instead: They let her get away. Who knows what she's capable of next.

    Season 7 
  • In "All Bottled Up", the Mane Six go to a friendship retreat which is actually them having to escape a locked room. They plan to set a new record while they're in there by working as a group, and eventually manage to complete all the puzzles.
    You'd Expect: For them to just turn the key and open the door.
    Instead: They decide to sing a song in the middle of it and completely forget about unlocking the door. They not only blow their chance to curb-stomp the old record, they miss breaking it by two whole seconds.
  • "A Flurry of Emotions": Twilight has volunteered to visit sick foals at the local hospital, planning on bringing snacks, toys, and books. Just as she is about to start gathering those things, Princess Cadance and Shining Armor show up and ask her to babysit Flurry Heart.
    You'd Expect: For Twilight to decline on account of her pre-existing obligations, particularly considering her history of not doing well under pressure. That and the fact that it's generally not a good idea to bring a baby into a hospital ward full of patients suffering from a contagious disease. That way Shining Armor and Cadance could look for somepony else to watch Flurry Heart (one would think that a princess would have no problem hiring a babysitter when needed).
    Instead: She accepts without a second thought, hoof-gagging Spike who tries to warn Shining Armor and Cadance that they've already made plans.
    As a Result: Twilight attempts to juggle babysitting with collecting the stuff to bring for the sick foals, giving little attention to Flurry Heart. Bored and frustrated, Flurry Heart's alicorn magic makes a huge mess of Twilight's hospital visit (among other things).
  • "Honest Apple":
    • Rarity is organizing a fashion design contest. She wants Applejack as one of the judges, citing her eye for practicality and unwavering honesty. Applejack is hesitant, citing her absolute lack of knowledge of the field of high fashion.
      You'd Expect: For someone like Rarity to understand that one cannot offer intelligent criticism of a creator's work without at least some meaningful knowledge of the creative field in question.
      Instead: She casually dismisses Applejack's concerns and insists she help judge the contest anyway.
    • Upon meeting the contestants, and seeing their designs, Applejack starts making comments which illustrate her utter ignorance of the world of fashion.
      You'd Expect: For Applejack to have at least a basic understanding of the difference between clothes made purely for looks (such as the dress which she herself wore to the Grand Galloping Gala), and everyday clothes.
      Instead: She criticizes every little thing that strikes her as less than practical, being outright condescending towards the contestants.
      You'd Then Expect: For Rarity to take Applejack aside and explain that her emphasis on practicality has been taken WAY too far.
      Instead: Rarity is shocked by Applejack's comments, but does not bother to confront her until after she rants against the fashion industry itself, offending the other judges and nearly ruining the contest.
  • In "A Royal Problem", after having their Cutie Marks switched, both Celestia and Luna have to take up the other's duties. For Luna, she has to spend the whole day smiling and waving towards crowds of ponies. She then agrees to have a picture taken for a school field trip, but the photographer takes too long to set-up. Luna momentarily frowns, and the picture is taken at the inopportune moment.
    You'd Expect: For Luna to ask for multiple photo takes, or for the photographer to take multiple shots.
    Instead: Only that one shot of Luna frowning is used and plastered in the newspapers, causing the school to lose funding for the field trip.
  • In the flashback episode, "The Perfect Pear", the Apple siblings learn about their long-lost, parents, Bright Macintosh and Pear Butter. Their respective families, the Apples and Pears shared a bitter rivalry that lasted for years, particularly by Grand Pear and Granny Smith. They forbade their children from seeing each other, despite their obvious growing attraction to one another. Eventually, Pear Butter and Bright Mac decide to get married, but on the night of their wedding their elders catch them, and Grand Pear attempts to force his daughter to move with him to Vanhoover. However, in that moment, she declares both the Apples and Pears to be her family.
    You'd Expect: Grand Pear to finally realize that the feud is getting in the way of his daughter's happiness, and to give his blessing for the marriage. Even Granny Smith, who just moments ago was chewing out her son for marrying a Pear, seems to have had a change of heart.
    Instead: He forces his daughter to choose sides. And when Pear Butter chooses Bright Mac and makes it clear she has no intention of leaving him, Grand Pear disowns her. He goes on to regret it later in life.
  • "Triple Threat":
    • Ember is unable to tell the difference between Twilight Sparkle and Starlight Glimmer.
      You'd Expect: For somepony to point out that Twilight has wings.
      Instead: Nopony does.
    • Also, Spike has Twilight and Starlight help try to keep Ember and Thorax apart.
      You'd Expect: Twilight aka the Princess of Friendship to remind Spike that anyone can make friends with someone whose completely different from them, take the Mane 6 for example. And Starlight would support that given she was taught by Twilight the importance of differences in friendships.
      Instead: They do no such thing and give in to Spike's paranoia.
  • "Daring Done?":
    • Dr. Caballeron has disguised himself and successfully turned the entirety of Somnambula against Daring Do. Rainbow Dash calls him out on being such a jerk to her despite her doing nothing wrong.
      You'd Expect: For him to keep up his facade and simply walk away.
      Instead: He reveals himself to Rainbow Dash and brags about his plan to her.
      Even Worse: He later explains his entire plan to the entire town, while all are present.
    • After Caballeron's first stupid moment, he sends his Mooks to capture Rainbow Dash so she doesn't let anypony know of this.
      You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash would fight them off, or simply fly out of reach so they can't get her.
      Instead: She just sits there, dumbfounded, and pretty much lets them tie her up to use as bait for Daring Do.
  • In "It Isn't the Mane Thing About You", Zecora creates two potions: a super sudsy shampoo for Rarity, and a magic remover potion for Pinkie.
    You'd Expect: For her to make the two potions different colors, or at least label them so anypony can tell the difference at a glance.
    Instead: She does no such thing. Rarity thus takes the remover potion by mistake, with predictably disastrous results.

  • In "A Health of Information":
    • In the Cold Open, it's shown that Fluttershy needs help locating some moss in the Everfree so she asks Zecora for her help locating them. They find the moss but it's in the middle of a pond.
      You'd Expect: For Fluttershy to simply fly over and pick them herself while Zecora focuses on collecting them into a sack.
      Instead: Zecora is the one who has to gather the moss with her bare hooves while Fluttershy stays on the ground. Predictably, when she can't reach the ones that are further away, she falls down into the pond and catches Swamp Fever from a nearby flower which starts the plot.
    • After Fluttershy faints from overwork trying to get a cure, it's revealed that she was out for 3 days. She was handed An Aesop of having to balance taking care of ones self and taking care of others.
      You'd Expect: For her to throw the lesson out of the window as it is not exactly applicable in this situation. They don't know how much time Zecora has before she becomes a tree. They don't have the luxury of time.
      Instead: She takes the lesson and slows down. Thankfully, they still manage to cure Zecora in time.
      Even Worse: Mage Meadowbrook's journal entries suggest that Swamp Fever is extremely contagious. After Zecora is cured, the doctor who diagnosed her shows up, also having caught the disease. While this is played for laughs, it implies that if Fluttershy had taken much longer getting back with the cure, all of Ponyville might have been at risk.

  • In "Once Upon a Zeppelin", Twilight Sparkle's family goes on a zeppelin cruise together. Things unravel, though, when they discover the zeppelin is entirely themed around Princesses Twilight, Cadance, and Flurry Heart, with over a hundred Loony Fans aboard. Iron Will reveals in private that the cruise is actually a massive sham; he suckered Twilight's parents into accepting the cruise so he could make a fortune in ticket sales to those Loony Fans.
    You'd Think: Twilight Velvet's impulse to sign the contract without reading it notwithstanding, Twilight Sparkle would agree with her father to turn the ship around, and then use her Princess rank to order Iron Will's arrest the second they make port and have the family transferred to another airship so they can still enjoy their cruise. Her immediate family includes two other Princesses and a Prince that would be more than willing to back her up.
    Instead: Twilight volunteers to go along with Iron Will's program to keep the fans happy so her family can enjoy the cruise.
  • In "Secrets and Pies", Pinkie Pie has been baking pies for Rainbow Dash for years under the impression that the latter loves them. One day, Pinkie gets suspicious when she finds one of her pies in the garbage and, after doing some investigating, comes to the conclusion that Rainbow Dash hates pies.
    You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash to be honest with Pinkie and tell her that she doesn't like pies, or at least tell her to dial back on the pie-making a little bit. She doesn't need a pie on her birthday EVERY year, let alone her half-birthday. Even if Pinkie becomes disappointed that Rainbow doesn't like pies, she'll probably understand. Better yet, she could tell Pinkie that while she doesn't like pies, everypony else does, and she should focus on making pies for them instead.
    Instead: Out of fear of hurting Pinkie's feelings, Rainbow Dash only pretends to eat the pies and gets rid of them when Pinkie isn't looking, (either by giving them to other ponies, or by feeding them to Tank and even Cheerilee's class hamster). Predictably, Pinkie catches Rainbow in the act of getting rid of a pie, and calls her out in front of the whole town.
    Bonus Idiot Points: Pinkie not only repeatedly falls for Rainbow Dash's Look Behind You trick, but never once thought to question the missing pie tins either.
  • In "Shadow Play - Part 1", a book written by Star Swirl the Bearded is discovered, chronicling his and the Pillars' final battle and banishment with the Pony of Shadows. It's eventually revealed that there's a way to reverse the banishment spell and bring the heroes back to Equestria.
    You'd Expect: For the Mane 6 (particularly Twilight Sparkle) to stop and consider the possible outcomes or negative consequences of their actions (namely the Pony of Shadows possibly being released as well). Even if they decide to go ahead and free Star Swirl and the Pillars from limbo, they still could prepare a failsafe if something does go wrong.
    Instead: Even though Starlight Glimmer thinks they should leave well enough alone (citing that Star Swirl and the others probably knew what they were doing), they reverse the banishment spell, thus unleashing the Pony of Shadows onto Equestria, as well as Twilight gaining Star Swirl's ire for her shortsightedness.
  • In "Shadow Play - Part 2", as shown in a flashback, the Pony of Shadows is revealed to be a unicorn named Stygian who was banished to limbo after being corrupted by darkness. However, it is also revealed that Stygian had hoped to become one of the Pillars of Olde Equestria himself, so he collects all of their artifacts in order to replicate their magic. However, the Pillars eventually catch Stygian with their possessions and demand answers.
    You'd Expect: Stygian to explain to the Pillars that he is not trying to steal their artifacts, and only wants to use their magic so he can fight alongside them. He was the one who brought them together to defeat the Sirens, after all.
    OR: He would actually talk to the Pillars before he put the plan in motion, explain his idea, and then acually ask for permission to use their artifacts.
    Instead: He remains silent about his intentions. Thus, the Pillars all jump to the wrong conclusion that Stygian is planning to use their artifacts for nefarious reasons and cast him out.

    Season 8 
  • "School Daze - Part 1":
    • Two students at the new School of Friendship, Smolder and Gallus, become fed up with the boring curriculum and decide to sneak out. Four others, one of them a changeling named Ocellus, tag along. To avoid Fluttershy blowing their cover, Ocellus disguises herself as Rarity and says she is taking the students on a field trip.
      You'd Expect: Fluttershy to check with one of her friends or an authority figure to be sure what they're doing is okay, thereby catching Ocellus in the act.
      Instead: "Oh, that sounds nice. Have fun!"
    • While playing hooky, Ocellus impresses her new friends by turning into all sorts of beings with her changeling abilities.
      You'd Expect: That when the students go back to school, Ocellus would at best do so in her normal form so she won't cause too much of a scene in case they get in trouble.
      Instead: She returns as a giant bug-like monster, causing widespread panic at the School of Friendship's Friends and Family Day event. This causes Chancellor Neighsay to lash out at Twilight for endangering the welfare of the pony students by having students of other species enroll. The world leaders, who escape injury in the bedlam, take offense to Neighsay's words and pull their representative students from the school. Neighsay declares the school a failure and shuts down its doors with a magical lock.
  • In "School Daze - Part 2", after Twilight destroys Neighsay's seal on the School of Friendship and defies him by promising the school will help better Equestria, Neighsay says the land would be destroyed and leaves through his portal.
    You'd Expect: For Celestia to stop him and have him removed from the EEA for his speciesist views on the non-pony creatures. Or for one of the creatures to stop him.
    Instead: They all just let him get away.
  • In "Horse Play", Twilight and her friends are putting on a play to commemorate the 1111th anniversary (or "ones-versary") of the day Princess Celestia first raised the sun, and she decides to cast her as the lead actress. However, the ponies soon learn that the sun princess is such a horrible actress that she can't even do charades!. Eventually, Applejack pressures Twilight to tell Celestia the truth about her poor acting and give the lead role to somepony else.
    You'd Expect: For Twilight to listen to Applejack and give Celestia a non-acting role. Celestia herself even said that she simply wanted to be a part of a play and never specifically wanted an acting role. She even mentioned at the beginning of the episode that she has no acting experience.
    Instead: Twilight keeps Celestia in the play out of fear of hurting her mentor's feelings and for not wanting to crush her dream of being part of the play. When the theater ends up in shambles, Celestia ends up overhearing Twilight's tirade about her terrible acting skills, and flies away in anger. Thankfully, Twilight apologizes and they are both able to fix things.
  • In "Non-Compete Clause", Rainbow Dash and Applejack are arguing over which way the students should paddle when canoeing, and the canoe is about to crash into a rock. Rainbow and AJ are beyond help at this point, but...
    You'd Expect: The students would either pick a direction themselves, or try to bring the canoe to a stop.
    Instead: They keep blindly paddling until the canoe crashes.
  • "Marks for Effort":
    • The Cutie Mark Crusaders want to attend the School of Friendship, but are turned away because they've already mastered the curriculum. They meet a young filly named Cozy Glow who is struggling with her studies and offer to tutor her for an upcoming friendship test. Later, she plots to fail her test on purpose to try and convince Twilight to let the CMC enroll at the School of Friendship like they wanted.
      You'd Expect: Cozy would tell the Crusaders of her plan before taking the test.
      Or: That she would offer to accompany the CMC when Twilight calls them into her office so that she can directly tell Twilight the reason why she failed her test and spare the CMC from punishment.
      Instead: She does none of the above, leading to Twilight falsely accusing the CMC of setting Cozy up to fail and banning them from the school grounds. Though, with what we know of Cozy now, this could have been an intentional ploy to make her look like she learned something.
    • While we're on the subject, after Cozy Glow flunks her test, Twilight calls the CMC to discuss about her failed test.
      You'd Expect: For Twilight to hear the CMC's side of the story. They've known each other for quite a while, and while the CMC can get into a lot of trouble with their zany plans, they've always had the best of intentions in mind, and they'd do their best to fix their mistakes. Besides, she and her friends most certainly have had friendship lessons about not jumping to conclusions.
      Instead: While the CMC attempt to explain that they taught Cozy Glow all the right answers, Twilight refuses to believe them; using the failed test as "evidence", and leading to the above What the Hell, Hero? moment.
  • In "The Mean 6":
    • Queen Chrysalis creates evil doppelgängers of the Mane 6 in an effort to take advantage of the Elements of harmony.
      You'd Expect: Chrysalis would do some thorough research on the Elements to understand how they work. Considering how close she was to victory in her previous two major roles, it is safe to assume that she did at least a bit of research back then.
      Instead: She does no such thing, leading to her plan failing.
      Then: The Mane Six and Starlight Glimmer, separated into pairs, are accosted by the Mean Six intercepting their trip.
      You'd Then Expect: The Mane Six to take notice of the doppelgängers' behaviour and appearance being a 180 from their friends (especially since they've dealt with this in the form of brainwashing before), suspect foul play and plot an investigation to see where they came from.
      Instead: The Mane Six (including Twilight "She's evil!" Sparkle) don't notice even the slightest difference and legitimately think their friends have gone bad, resulting in a disagreement. The only one who immediately told the difference between real and fake was the Tree of Harmony, as shown when the Elements turn black in response and destroys them.
    • Early on in the episode, Chrysalis disguises herself as a photographer, Crackle Cosette, to gain the ingredients she needs to make the clones: she needs pictures of the Mane Six, as well as a sample of their manes, which she sets up as a photo shoot for the Canterlot Historical Society.
      You'd Expect: Either of the ponies to ask Crackle why she is taking their hair while getting them ready for their shoots.
      Instead: They say nothing.
      You'd Then Expect: After Crackle leaves, for the ponies to call the Canterlot Historical Society to make sure their photos are taken, and to get information if their photographer really had arrived or if they sent any photographers in the first place.
      Instead: They don't.
  • In "The Hearth's Warming Club:
    • The Student Six are preparing to return to their families for winter break so they can celebrate their respective holidays. However, Gallus is revealed to have no family to go home to, and wants to stay with his friends longer.
      You'd Expect: Gallus to talk to Twilight about staying either at the School/Castle of Friendship or with one of his friends over winter break.
      Or: That Twilight would have inquired about Gallus' family situation at the time he enrolled (as should be standard procedure for all students), and that she would take the initiative to work something out for him (as would be in character for the Princess of Friendship).
      Instead: He pulls a prank that ends with the Hearth's Warming tree in the common room being covered in purple goo.
    • Twilight narrows down the possible suspect(s) of the prank.
      You'd Expect: Twilight would realize that she has absolutely no proof of who did it and that it could've literally been anyone and reassure the students that they're not in trouble and simply ask all of them individually if they know anything about it. If the culprit gets away and no one comes forward, then she should leave it at that.
      Instead: She only punishes all of the Young Six with the excuse that the culprit ran into their dorms, thus they are all suspects and threatens to keep them all over winter break if no one confesses. She at least gives them each a chance to come forward.
      You'd Now Expect: Gallus to immediately come clean and explain that he pulled the prank and only did so because he wanted to stay with his friends a little bit longer since he's an orphan. While he would still have to face the consequences of his actions, at least the others will be spared from interrogation.
      Instead: When Gallus is initially called in, he denies pulling the prank. Only when the others start accusing each other does he finally admit responsibility. Fortunately, they offer to stay with him so he won't be alone for the holidays.
  • "Friendship University":
    • Chancellor Neighsay has given the Flim Flam Brothers' school the EEA's stamp of approval.
      You'd Expect: Neighsay would have conducted a proper inspection of the Brothers' school beforehand to confirm it's legit.
      Instead: He does no such thing, giving Friendship U full EEA accreditation on the spot due to it being a pony-first environment (and also probably just to spite Twilight and the School of Friendship). Said university turns out to be a scam that extorts its students, which would very likely lead to the EEA's reputation being tarnished.
    • Twilight and Rarity suspect the brothers are up to no good and do some snooping around in disguise.
      You'd Expect: For their disguises to be convincing enough to fool even the Flim Flam Brothers. Rarity is a designer and fashionista, so there's no way she can't come up with something good enough to walk around unnoticed.
      Instead: While Rarity's disguise is convincing enough, Twilight's disguise is nothing more than an eyepatch and a post-it note over her cutie mark. It doesn't take long for the Flim Flam Brothers to expose her, seeing right through her disguise.
  • In "Yakity-Sax", Pinkie Pie has taken up a new hobby of playing an instrument from Yakyakistan called the yovidaphone. Despite her lack of skill due to having just started out, her friends agree to be supportive, hoping that she'll improve over time. However, it soon becomes apparent that Pinkie is not getting any better, especially when her excessive playing begins causing problems for her friends. They decide that something has to be done.
    You'd Expect: That they would gently tell Pinkie that she's being disruptive and ask her to be more considerate. They could advise her to play in private, or while surrounded by a silencing charm, or at least not practice when they're trying to do their jobs.
    You'd Also Expect: They would tell Pinkie that she hasn't been improving, and recommend that she ask one of her Yak friends to give her some music lessons.
    Instead: They straight up tell Pinkie to stop playing her yovidaphone just because she's bad at it. Pinkie is understanding and appears to take it well at first, but then later becomes depressed, culminating in her deciding to leave Ponyville for Yakyakistan.
  • "A Rockhoof and a Hard Place":
    • After spending 1000 years in limbo, Rockhoof is having a difficult time adapting to modern-day Equestria. The Mane Six are trying to find him a job. Trouble is, his lack of knowledge of the modern world combined with his raw strength cause him to royally screw up every job he tries.
      You'd Expect: That someone would find him a job where his brute strength would be useful. His claim to fame is digging a trench to divert lava from an erupting volcano away from a town. Something along the lines of farm work, construction, or mining could be a great fit for him.
      Or: That someone would help him learn to better control himself so that he doesn't keep breaking things all the time.
      Or: That at least one of his employers would understand that he wouldn't be the first pony to embarrass himself at his first day on the job, and give him a chance to learn from his mistakes.
      Instead: They let him fail at one job after another until he gives up hope of adapting to modern times and asks to be turned to stone (functionally equivalent to suicide).
    • Spike and Smolder decide to hold a fire-breathing contest.
      You'd Expect: They would have the contest outside in an open field where there are no fire hazards around.
      Instead: They do it inside a classroom that is not proven to be fireproof. Rockhoof sees the flames and uses water from the school's fountain to extinguish them, but ends up earning everyone's ire for flooding the room and damaging a quilt that Rarity had been working on.
  • In "Sounds of Silence":
    • We are introduced to a new peaceful and kind new species called the Kirin. However, it is later revealed that when they get angry, they turn into raging beasts of fire called Nirik. Additionally, the Kirin live in a village made of treehouses.
      You'd Expect: They would've built their homes out of fireproof materials or at least installed a sprinkler system or any form of fire suppressant. Creatures who have literal fiery tempers and live in a forest is an extremely deadly combination. Even if said combination is to likely deter them from becoming Niriks in the first place, they should still have quick access to sufficient water in case any fires still break out nevertheless.
      Instead: They only have a single fountain in the center of their village. Predictably, a fight breaks out amongst the Kirin, causing them to become Nirik and accidentally burn down their entire village; and leading to them all deciding to take a vow of silence.
    • One day, Autumn Blaze finds the Foal's Breath, a flower that can cure the effects of the Stream of Silence.
      You'd Expect: For Autumn Blaze to start growing a batch of the flowers herself for ease of access so that she doesn't have to search the forest constantly. Also in case the effects are temporary, which it is.
      Instead: She recklessly picks the flowers without any foresight, wastes majority of her time in exile searching for the dwindling amount of flowers and by the time the ponies arrive, it was farmed to near-extinction. If it wasn't for some squirrels using some of them to line their nest, the Kirin will be stuck as emotionless mutes unwillingly.
  • "School Raze - Part 1":
    • The Mane Six must go to Tartarus to question Tirek about his possible involvement if not, any clues as to why magic is disappearing from Equestria.
      You'd Expect: Due to magic failing, the Mane Six think of the possibility that their prison runs on it as well, meaning that they need to come up with an alternative way to get in and out. Alternatively, they can just ask Celestia and Luna right there in the throne room on how to enter and leave the place, since the two have used it before to imprison Tirek the first time.
      Instead: They didn't even try any of the above and run straight to the prison doors without thinking about how they will even get in. Sure enough, the doors run on magic and they have no way of entering Tartarus and would have been stuck there if it wasn't for Cozy Glow packing the Key of Unfettered Entrance in Twilight's saddlebag.
    • After using the Key of Unfettered Entrance to open the doors to Tartarus, it breaks after one use right in front of them, meaning that they can't use it to get out once they are done.
      You'd Expect: For the Mane Six to check if they had any other things they can use to get out of Tartarus once they are done questioning Tirek. If there isn't anything, they need to have someone hold the doors or use a sturdy enough object to keep the doors open.
      Instead: The Mane Six enter Tartarus anyway without giving a thought as how they will get out, effectively locking themselves in.
    • Tirek is a highly dangerous inmate in Tartarus, the most maximum-securityest prison in Equestria.
      You'd Expect: For him not to be allowed to receive mail, or if it's absolutely necessary due to prisoner's rights or something, for said mail to be monitored. You know, like in real life.
      Instead: He is allowed to maintain contact with the outside world completely unchecked, thus he manages to train a disciple to continue his wicked ways.
  • In "School Raze - Part 2", Cozy Glow is confronted and captured by the others after her plan is foiled.
    You'd Expect: For her to placed under a watchful eye, like her parents or a guardian (if she has any), or put in a some kind of juvenile correctional facility. She may have committed high treason and attempted to absorb all the magic for herself (as well as showing no remorse for her actions), but she's still a child.
    Instead: She's locked in a cage in Tartarus right next to her pen pal and co-conspirator, Lord Tirek.
    Even Worse: It is implied that getting locked up with Tirek was her plan the whole time.

    Season 9 
  • "The Beginning of the End" has several of these moments.
    • The princesses Celestia and Luna plan on retiring while handing the reigns of Equestria to Twilight.
      You'd Expect: To discuss this idea with Twilight over the course of several weeks or even months to see if she'd even agree to such a drastic idea in the first place due to the massive shift in power it will cause. If she agrees, the siblings will formally begin to train Twilight in the world of politics, something that the latter has shown to be severely lacking in experience onscreen due to all of her other obligations. After training, they will gradually ease their own obligations to her over time so that the siblings can retire without worry.
      Instead: They just drop the bombshell that they are retiring in a few days right after summoning the Mane Six without even consulting Twilight about it. Sure enough, she freaks out over the massive responsibility being dumped on her and is left a wreck after the announcement. After that, she hastily scrambles to make sure that her previous obligations will be taken care of once she takes the throne.
      Fortunately: Following Sombra's defeat, the princesses decide to delay their retirement so Twilight can have the time she needs to prepare herself, to her relief.
      Even Worse: In light of Discord's reasoning for his Engineered Heroics in "The Ending of the End" which is to boost Twilight's confidence as ruler of Equestria, this implies that the whole reason why he even did such an asinine stunt in the first place was because of the bombshell dropping earlier freaking Twilight out and leaving her a nervous wreck. This means that the Princesses have to share the blame for indirectly causing said events in the first place. Notice that the debut scene with "Grogar" happened after the retirement announcement.
    • King Sombra has invaded the Crystal Empire.
      You'd Expect: For Cadance to immediately raise a shield that will keep him at bay on first sight like the last time while activating the Crystal Heart to destroy him again. If help is needed, she can ask Shining Armor, Sunburst and Mistmane to either help with maintaining the shield or write and send a message for outside help if needed.
      Instead: She doesn't do any of those things and chooses to personally send a message to Twilight for help instead of having someone else like Sunburst or Mistmane to do it for her while Sombra walks to the palace unopposed and Mind Controls her subjects on the way, effectively handing him the Crystal Empire on a silver platter.
      Even Worse: Shining Armor and Cadance both assume that the other has Flurry Heart safe and sound during the whole thing. By the time both of them realise that that isn't the case, she has been captured and is used as a hostage by Sombra to force the royal couple into surrendering without a fight, effectively squashing the last chance to stop him until the Mane Six arrive.
    • After the Mane Six have (seemingly) beaten King Sombra with the Elements of Harmony, they return them to the Tree of Harmony. Unfortunately, it turns out Sombra is Not Quite Dead and tricked the ponies into leading them to the source of their magic. He then attacks the Tree, which causes it to explode, releasing the Elements.
      You'd Expect: For either Twilight or Rarity to catch the Elements with their telekinesis.
      Instead: They just let the Elements fall and shatter without using any of their magic, presumably out of shock.
    • King Sombra vs. Discord.
      You'd Expect: Since Sombra knows about Discord and what he can do, Sombra takes no chances — and unleashes as many of his Anti-Magic crystals as possible, and/or retreats in the same vein as his earlier fake-out against the Mane 6.
      Instead: Sombra loudly and proudly fires at Discord head-on. Naturally, Discord keeps Fingersnapping Sombra's blasts away.
    • King Sombra has the Mane Six at his mercy after destroying the Tree and Elements of Harmony while trapping them in an Anti-Magic crystal cage.
      You'd Expect: For him to Mind Control them just like what he did with the Crystal Empire, Ponyville and Canterlot. His enchantments have been shown to be so powerful that not even Twilight can break them. Sure, he will have to deal with the other Princesses and the Pillars but with Cadance and Shining Armor all the way up north in the Crystal Empire, the Royal Sisters and Starswirl busy with the rampaging Everfree forest, they wouldn't be able to help for a long time. The only hiccup to this is probably Discord as Grogar watching them fail and erasing Sombra, acting as his part of a living safety net.
      Alternatively: For him to make sure his crystal cage extends to the ground as well.
      Instead: But then we wouldn't have a show, at least one that doesn't require the spotlight being taken from the main characters. He grabs the Villain Ball and leaves. While the heroes are indeed trapped by the crystals, this didn't stop them from simply digging under them.
    • The Mane Six are revealed to be able to use their harmony powers even without the Elements of Harmony.
      You'd Expect: For him to cut his losses and bail.
      Instead: He just stands there, ranting about how they were supposed to be powerless. He gets obliterated.
  • "Uprooted":
    • The Young Six discover that the Tree of Harmony has been destroyed. To honor it, they decide to make a tribute, but must get permission from their guardians first. Before they go, they leave Sandbar in charge of the Tree's remains.
      You'd Expect: For Sandbar to leave the pieces in place until the others arrive.
      Instead: He just moves the pieces without even consulting with the others.
  • "Frenemies":
    • Thousands of years ago, legendary heroine Gusty the Great defeated the evil ram Grogar by stealing his Bewitching Bell, which holds the majority of his power. However, due to it being indestructible, she had to hide it in the summit of Mount Everhoof.
      You'd Expect: As the cave in the summit is now holding the power source of the most dangerous monster in known history, she would've implemented a massive gauntlet worth of defenses to it while training an Ancient Order of Protectors to protect the bell once Grogar inevitably discovers its location and tries to get it himself. After that, she would use Fiction As Coverup to prevent other villains from getting it. After all, you can't look for something that doesn't exist.
      Instead: She puts up only a single, admittedly powerful barrier at the cave entrance while passing on her tale as a children's story. The only thing closest to a living "guardian" is just a single underequipped and uninformed pony who just happens to be living on the mountain while being mostly reliant on the mountain's hazards for defense. Sure enough, Tirek empowered by Chrysalis' magic is enough to force open a hole in the barrier for Cozy Glow to fly through and take the bell without having to worry about any more defenses past the barrier. If it weren't for the trio deciding to keep the bell for themselves, Grogar would have his bell back.
    • To break past the barrier, Tirek resorts to draining Chrysalis' magic and blasts it. Even then, it only manages to open a small hole big enough for Cozy Glow to fly through.
      You'd Expect: To only open the hole when Cozy Glow needs to fly through. He wasn't even sure if he can keep it open at all times, so better to save energy.
      Instead: He banks on Cozy Glow being able to get the bell inside without thinking about any possible booby traps or guardians in the cave itself while constantly using magic keeping the hole open. If it weren't for the barrier being the last line of defense, he would have failed and trapped Cozy Glow in the cave while leaving Chrysalis drained of her magic.
    • Even Grogar, for all of his intelligence, had a couple idiot moments himself. To start, he tasks the trio with retrieving the bell.
      You'd Expect: That he would either personally lead the mission himself, or at least watch them through his crystal ball to ensure they can’t pull anything behind his back. Besides claiming to have been watching over them in the past, he has also demonstrated (and proven) that even in his weakened state he is still far more powerful than the three combined, as well as used King Sombra's demise as an example of what will happen to them if they defy his orders.
      Instead: He decides to leave them to their own devices, without even thinking to check up on them. Guess what happens next.
    • The Legion lie to Grogar that they were unable to get the bell.
      You'd Expect: He would immediately become suspicious and interrogate them on this. Even if they have proven that they can work together, they are still highly untrustworthy.
      Instead: He takes their word for it and, while angry at not having his bell, commends them for their teamwork. And considering what we know about "Grogar" now...
  • In "Student Counsel":
    • Starlight is tasked with closing up the school for spring break while the rest of the faculty has to do business in Canterlot. However, despite having no more classes, she still gets swarmed by students asking for help.
      You'd Expect: For her to put an "Out to lunch" or "Do not disturb" sign at the door during Trixie's picnic and the Spring Solstice party preparation. The students should be able to know the concept of a lunch break and come back later, right?
      Instead: She does no such thing and makes herself available all the time. Sure enough, her wristband alarm goes off every 5 seconds much to Trixie's frustration while overworking herself.
    • Silverstream decides to stay a little late instead of taking the train home in order to finish her report.
      You'd Expect: Silverstream to inform her family in advance. You never know how long you can actually take to finish your report.
      Instead: She overestimates herself and decides to stay behind without informing anyone, let alone her family thinking that she can be a bit late without anyone noticing. Her family proceeds to panic over her disappearance while getting the entire country of Mt Aris to search Equestria and the surrounding lands for her.
  • In "A Trivial Pursuit", Twilight is nervous about being paired up with Pinkie Pie for the next Trivia Trot, since the latter has never participated before and fears her lack of knowledge will jeopardize her three-time winning streak.
    You'd Expect: Twilight to remember what she learned back in "The Point of No Return", that Perfection Is Impossible and to just let Pinkie help her, even if she gives the wrong answers.
    Instead: When Pinkie gets the first question wrong, Twilight goes all “Lesson Zero” and not only refuses to let her help, but deliberately sets her up to be disqualified so she can continue on with Sunburst. Fortunately, he gives her a taste of her own medicine by trying to get her disqualified, to which Twilight realizes her mistake and apologizes to Pinkie.
  • "2, 4, 6, Greaaat":
    • Rainbow Dash is given the role of being the cheer squad's instructor despite having no interest and experience in the field by Twilight.
      You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash to refuse the role. Granted Twilight wouldn't have taken no for an answer, at least she should have tried.
      Instead: She just accepts without much resistance.
    • Now being practically forced into a job she has no interest or experience in, she is approached by the cheer squad wondering why she is so down in the first place.
      You'd Expect: Rainbow Dash to explain her situation. If she is going to be stuck with this role, at least try to make the cheer squad understand why she is acting like that and be more understanding.
      Instead: She constantly blows them off without explaining why while having a hands-off approach to the whole thing, resulting in Informed Wrongness.
      Even Worse: At the end, it is hinted that Twilight selected Rainbow Dash for the position knowing full well she would have no actual interest in it, so as to teach her a lesson. Helping teachers become better teachers is generally a noble goal, but not when it may come at the students' expense.
  • "The Summer Sun Setback":
    • Twilight's preparations for the last Summer Sun Celebration prior to the Royal Sisters' retirement are suddenly ruined, thanks to secret meddling from the Legion of Doom to distract everypony from catching them so they can sneak into the Canterlot Archives to steal a book on Grogar's Bewitching Bell unnoticed.
      You'd Expect: For Discord to sense Tirek is amongst the festivities, as he worked with him the last time.
      Instead: He doesn't.
    • Then when the rest of the Mane Six and Spike discover the preparations are ruined:
      You'd Expect: The ponies and Spike to tell Twilight that everything is going wrong.
      Instead: They keep the whole thing a secret, worried that she would have one of her "Twilighting" moments, and try to fix the problems themselves.
      The Result: Everything goes even worse, and Twilight calls her friends out for not telling her in the first place.
  • In "She Talks to Angel", Zecora's potion magically causes Fluttershy to swap bodies with Angel. While the latter gains the ability to verbally speak, the former loses hers, and at one point tries to explain the situation to Twilight and Spike.
    You'd Expect: Fluttershy to draw or write down what's happening in the dirt.
    Instead: She just pantomimes what's going on, and Twilight and Spike, having no clue what she's talking about, leave her behind.
  • "Dragon Dropped":
    • The general premise in a nutshell. Having to decide between one friend or the other, always going all or nothing.
      You'd Expect: To try having all three individuals hang out together at once.
      Instead: Not one of them suggests this idea.
    • Rarity no longer has Spike available 24/7 to help her with her daily errands.
      You'd Expect: She'd understand that Spike has other friends to hang out with and has a life outside of being her assistant. She shapes up and become independent, like how she was before the show's premiere.
      Instead: She winds up becoming too dependent on Spike due to having his help for years, resulting in her trying to yank him back into helping him by spending time with him at the expense of others.
    • Gabby is left with no one to spend time with due to Rarity's antics.
      You'd Expect: For her to call an overdue reunion with the CMC.
      Instead: She never brings them up.
  • In "A Horse Shoe-In":
    • With Twilight now preparing to take over ruling Equestria, she puts Starlight in charge of running the School of Friendship. Knowing it will be a big job, Starlight decides to hire a vice-headmare to help her. After choosing a hoof-full of potential candidates, she puts them through an interview process to find out who has what it takes. However, Trixie is fully convinced she's guaranteed the position.
      You'd Expect: Starlight would explain to Trixie at the beginning that she needs somepony who is qualified for the job. She even tells her at one point that if she had to pick somepony at the moment, it wouldn't be her.
      Instead: Starlight can't bring herself to kick Trixie out of the interview process due to wanting to work with a friend, despite the latter's less-than-stellar performances. This comes to a head when Trixie accidentally endangers the students by teleporting a portion of Froggy Bottom Bogg into a classroom, unaware that a colony of flash bees had nested there. Starlight then berates her for her recklessness. She soon regrets it after Twilight returns and helps her realize that hiring Trixie was a bad idea.
    • It's confirmed that the Mane Six will be helping Twilight with running Equestria in "The Beginning of the End".
      You'd Expect: For Starlight to start hiring new teachers that will ease the Mane Six's workload after she deals with Trixie's issue. If she is at a loss on who to pick as friendship is an abstract topic, she can ask the Mane Six for any possible candidates. Or she can even ask the CMC, who were confirmed to be tutors.
      Instead: The idea never comes up.
  • "The Ending of the End" has several of these. Apparently, general stupidity is directly proportional to how important an episode is narrative-wise.
    • Discord is revealed to have been masquerading as Grogar and attempting Engineered Heroics so that Twilight can be boosted in confidence as the future ruler of Equestria (which alone should count).
      You'd Expect: For him to leave the villains that have already been defeated alone. Breaking them out will not only undo all of the Mane 6's hard work, it will also risk bringing them back as credible threats. If there is a loose end to be tied up, he should just bring back Chrysalis as she is the only villain at large.
      You'd Also Expect: As since Discord was already setting up the villains to fail, he would lead to them to a decoy of Grogar's Bewitching Bell instead of the real one. If he needs to ward off any possible suspicion derived from unearthing a worthless relic, he could add a tiny bit of magic to the decoy, or say that only he himself can use it, ensuring that it can be collected instead of being hidden away right under his nose.
      Alternatively: For him to realize that there is more to being a ruler than just smiting threats to your nation. He could set up trials that require skills in navigating red tape and bureaucracy while training Twilight in the art of politics instead, something that she lacks onscreen experience in. Preferably in the art of diplomacy between other races, considering that they are often fighting without pony intervention as shown in "School Daze".
      Instead: He breaks the villains out of prison while resurrecting the one that was Killed Off for Real, not to mention making them work together as a team. This undoes all of the heroes' efforts in one fell swoop while having them take Grogar's actual Bewitching Bell which made them even more dangerous than before. After that, he is inevitably betrayed as the villains usurping "Grogar" as he didn't keep tabs on the bell, resulting in the events of the episode.
    • Chrysalis in her Crackle Cosette guise has been spreading racist rumors around Equestria to sow discord among the three pony tribes.
      You'd Expect: For any authoritative figure to actually notice that something is very wrong when the ponies are suddenly changing views at the drop of a hat and put up cross-tribal meetings to dispel those rumors before they cause civil strife. Sure, Chrysalis might attempt to sabotage them, but at least they actually tried to do something.
      Instead: They shrug off the racist attitudes as jitters from the news of Twilight's upcoming coronation, despite the two topics being completely unrelated. Their indifference allows the Windigoes to return while stifling the spirit of friendship and harmony in Equestria.
    • Cozy Glow proposes to Tirek and Chrysalis that she be used as a "guinea pig" for Discord's chaos magic, while displaying a cute face.
      You'd Expect: That they be highly wary of her and refuse to give her the chaos magic, especially since she has attempted to manipulate Tirek before.
      Instead: They give her the magic without question or protest. Had it not been for her inability to control the magic, she would've successfully betrayed them and taken over Equestria herself.
    • The Pillars are tasked with guarding the borders upon learning of the Legion of Doom. They run into Tirek.
      You'd Expect: For Starswirl or Stygian to come up with a strategy as the former sealed Tirek away the first time and knows about his ability to steal magic. Even if there is no time to plan due to how sudden Tirek jumped right in front of them, they should use indirect attacks like telekinesis as Tirek can only absorb magic from living beings.
      Instead: They just charge in headfirst Leeroy Jenkins style with magic blasts while facing his third form which makes him able to steal earth pony magic. Predictably, they get defeated quickly and got their magic stolen. To add to the insult, Stygian didn't even appear at all to help formulate a plan, implying that he didn't even get called.
    • Cozy Glow as an alicorn bursts right into the throne room and effectively sucker punches Twilight. Celestia and Luna face her, as she is an alicorn and can rival her might.
      You'd Expect: For them to be on the lookout for the Bewitching Bell, the thing that will pretty much drain their magic. They know about its abilities from Discord's first-hand account.
      Instead: They blast immediately without checking. Sure enough, Cozy Glow, having picked her target to be Canterlot, brings the bell and drains them until they can no longer fight. Lampshaded by Cozy Glow herself who says that the problem with magic-based users is that common sense has a tendency to vanish whenever magic gets involved. To add insult to the injury, the Mane 6 immediately jump in and were actually successful in subduing Cozy Glow if it wasn't for a Villainous Rescue, meaning that the earlier moment was pretty much the moment in every crisis where the princesses get taken out of the equation, making the whole attempt pointless in hindsight.
    • Starlight faces Chrysalis. She manages to trigger a mini-avalanche on Chrysalis.
      You'd Expect: For Starlight to use the opportunity to thoroughly Double Tap her. There is no way a mini-avalanche could have done Chrysalis in so easily, especially when she is even more powerful than ever.
      Instead: Starlight pulls off an Unflinching Walk thinking that she already defeated her. Sure enough, Chrysalis is still not down for the count and the shockwave from her explosive comeback sends Starlight flying, defeating her.
    • The villains have captured the heroes.
      You'd Expect: For the villains to drain them of magic, either through the Bewitching Bell or via Tirek's ability to absorb magic.
      Instead: They just lock them up with a combination of Chrysalis' webbing and shards of her anti-magic throne.
      The Result: After Discord manages to free Starlight, she's able to free Twilight's friends, enabling them to meet back up with Twilight, ultimately leading to the villains' defeat.
      Also: For Spike to try using his normal fire breath on the goo when the villains aren't looking as magic is only needed for sending objects. It's better than just sitting around.
      Instead: The idea never comes up.
    • During the final battle, the villains take Spike hostage to force the Mane Six to surrender. Twilight stands down, and Spike is returned to her. The villains then tell the heroes that they've lost, and power up a final attack.
      You'd Expect: Twilight to teleport herself and her friends to safety, and then try to round up as many of their remaining allies as possible. Even though they think most of Equestria has been divided, they could still make an effort to undo that, and it's been stated that the Crystal Empire can still be counted on to help. At the very least, they could escape with their lives.
      Alternatively: To resume fighting as Spike is not longer a hostage. It may be harder now that they are aware of the attempted theft but it is better then just simply giving up.
      Instead: They simply give up, and decide to stay and die. And if help hadn't arrived moments later, that's exactly what would have happened, and the villains would have triumphed.
    • In the climax, Twilight fires the super rainbow blast at the Legion of Doom.
      You'd Expect: For them to try using the bell on the incoming beam. It doesn't matter how powerful it is, it's still magic so theoretically could be absorbed like any spell.
      Instead: They just stand there and get hit, cementing their defeat.
      Even Worse: Twilight's final friendship speech takes a rather long time for her to complete, so one, or all of them could easily just hit her when she least expects it.
      Instead: They get a hold of the Idiot Ball and let the rainbow beam depower them.
    • When the heroes are captured, Discord manages provoke Tirek into firing a blast at him to redirect on Starlight's inhibitor, setting her free. She then proceeds to set all of the others free as well.
      You'd Expect: For only Starlight to stay behind while the others escape. It may be cruel but everyone else who aren't the Mane 6 is dead weight as they lost their magic and will only get recaptured if they stay. After that, the escapees are to run to the Castle of Friendship (the only place that is shown not compromised by the villains) first before looking for Twilight, as it has a stash of very useful artefacts as shown in "Spring Breakdown" to make up for the loss of innate magic, one of which is the Staff of Sacanas, that can give the villains a taste of their medicine for once.
      Instead: Discord, Celestia, Luna and the Pillars stay behind along with Starlight to stall the villainous trio because only the Mane 6 can find Twilight. Celestia even proclaims that they are not completely helpless without magic, despite never showing any combat skills that don't require magic. They all get captured again offscreen. Them lasting long enough for the Mane 6 to escape screams Plot Armor given how quickly they lost with magic.
    • The Legion of Doom has everyone on the ropes. The only thing stopping everyone from being turned into ashes is Twilight putting a stone in the beam's way. The Mane Five, Spike, Discord and the Princesses stay behind in order to hold them off till Twilight gets back (y'know, assuming that they're not going to die to the same blast that blew Canterlot Castle to pieces!). Honestly, them staying behind is also a rather bad case of Plot-Induced Stupidity, but focusing on the bigger issue..
      You'd Expect: For Twilight to know that she can't bounce back alone judging from past experiences, stop holding the stone and then just use her magic to teleport everyone away. All of them would have a much better shot of finding a way to stop them if they're all working together.
      Instead: She leaves all of them behind. Her friends all get captured while she eventually holds herself in the Crystal Empire fruitlessly looking for a solution until they bust themselves out.

    Equestria Girls Movies 
Even in another world entirely, characters can make some pretty baffling decisions. But that's perfectly fine; after all, it's only human.

Equestria Girls

  • After Twilight Sparkle's coronation, she uses the Element of Magic, one-sixth of the most powerful magic known to ponykind, as a crown.
    You'd Expect: Twilight to keep the crown in a safe place when she isn't using it, as Celestia had done with the Elements of Harmony even then where was no present threat in Equestria.
    Instead: She believes that leaving it on the nightstand while she's sleeping will be safe enough. This provides the perfect opportunity for Sunset Shimmer to steal it overnight.
    To Make Matters Worse: Celestia had given the elements to Twilight for part of Season 3 in case Discord reverted to his old ways. Twilight kept them in an unlocked glass case on the first floor of the library. Clearly the thought of thieves never occurred to Twilight (or really, any of the ponies) in the first place.
  • A minor example. Twilight doesn't have a home in the human world to sleep for the night.
    You'd Expect: To remember that she can just return to Equestria for the night as the portal is still open. Not to mention, she can debrief with her friends and family regarding her situation and possibly ask for any advice. If timekeeping is an issue, she can just set a designated duration for which she can stay upon returning so that she won't be late for the next day.
    Instead: She sleeps in the school library, making a makeshift bed out of the books.

Rainbow Rocks

  • In the Pre-Movie Short "Hamstocalypse Now", Fluttershy asks Rarity to watch over a group of hamsters while she cleans their home.
    You'd Expect: Rarity to pretty much do just that.
    Instead: She designs little outfits for the hamsters, which results in them running amok and chewing on her creations.

Friendship Games

  • During the titular games, a magic-detecting amulet created by Twilight Sparkle's human counterpart goes haywire and rips open several portals to Equestria, allowing maniacal living plants to attack everyone in sight. Rainbow Dash is forced to use her magic in order to save several students from being eaten alive. This is seen by everyone from both schools, including Crystal Prep principal Abacus Cinch.
    You'd Expect: Cinch to realize the games are becoming too dangerous and to call them off, as suggested by Principal Celestia.
    Instead: Cinch assumes that Canterlot High is cheating, citing the "trained attack plants" and Rainbow Dash's wings, despite the monster plants attacking their students as well, and insists they continue.
    You'd Then Expect: Knowing that Canterlot High School's students have magic, and that it almost caused disaster in the last event, Cinch wouldn't mess around with it. Human Twilight even tells Cinch that, despite her amulet, she's not entirely sure how magic works.
    Instead: In flagrant violation of this advice, Cinch orders Human Twilight to use the power of the amulet to gain an edge in the Games so that her legacy of winning will be preserved. The results almost destroy the multiverse.

Legend of Everfree

  • Camp Everfree is in danger of shutting down because Gloriosa Daisy and Timber Spruce can't afford the payments on the land, with Flithy Rich planning to tear down the camp and open a day spa. While in distress over this, Gloriosa comes across a cave with magic crystals that give her the power to control plants.
    You'd Expect: Gloriosa and Timber would reach out to former campers for a fundraiser or donations. Since Filthy Rich gave Gloriosa more time to find a way to come up with money, even a few phone calls might raise enough. Or, if they want something more concrete, have Gloriosa sell her ability to anyone who wants to see it. Proving the existence of supernatural powers would net her and her brother a small fortune.
    Instead: Gloriosa chooses to fight off anyone who tries to shut the camp down with her powers. Even Timber tells Gloriosa this is a bad idea, but she's insistent. Gloriosa not only bites off more than she can chew, but she almost seals in the campers who are already there, and nearly destroys her own camp.
    Even Worse: The Humane Seven suggest a fundraiser at the end of the movie, and it works. Apparently, the thought of asking former campers for money never even occurred to Gloriosa until they suggested it.

Magical Movie Night Specials

  • The Movie Magic special takes place on the film set of the upcoming Daring Do movie, directed by Canter Zoom. Zoom's niece, Juniper Montage, is doing volunteer work as his production assistant. She had also wanted to play the title role of the film, but was passed over for an already-established film actress.
    You'd Think: Juniper would stuff her ego, do her job, and not interfere with the project. These summer-blockbuster franchise films are often multi-million-dollar projects financed by some of the biggest film-production companies in the world. You do not screw around with that kind of money.
    Instead: Juniper starts stealing props and costumes from the set, hoping to drive the lead actress to quit so Juniper can snap the role of Daring Do away from her. Naturally, she gets caught in the act by the Rainbooms. Although he's willing to forgive her as family, Canter Zoom rightfully tears into her for nearly ruining his career with her childish snit and bans her from the studio.
  • Prior to Mirror Magic, Zoom pulls some strings to have Juniper placed in a job working at a mall movie theater's concession stand. Juniper is less than thrilled.
    You'd Expect: That Juniper would, once again, stuff her ego, do her job, and be grateful for her uncle saving her from more serious repercussions for her actions in Movie Magic. Criminal sabotage is a serious crime with stiff penalties in most countries the MLP franchise is marketed in, including Canada and the US.
    Instead: She skips work to wander the mall blaming the Rainbooms for blowing her shot at stardom, gives her boss attitude every time he asks her to do her job, and assaults and terrorizes moviegoers as a towering she-demon with a magic mirror.

My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Holidays Unwrapped Specials

  • The Humane Seven resort to faking a snow day to delay an upcoming exam due to them blowing off studying the night before as they fell asleep halfway through. Principal Celestia sees the fake display outside her window.
    You'd Think: For her to check the weather or even the other windows. Snow days isn't something that can be casually given, especially if there is an exam on that day.
    Instead: She doesn't do any of this. If it wasn't for Cranky Doodle having some common sense, she would have declared a snow day on an otherwise normal day.
  • There is an annual holiday tradition between Pinkie Pie and Rarity for the former to bake a soufflé for the latter as a surprise. However, the long distance between their houses means that it always deflates before reaching Rarity.
    You'd Think: For Pinkie Pie to simply invite Rarity over to her house for the soufflé on the day itself. Rarity herself has to be free if she is always available to receive the soufflé in the first place. Sure Pinkie Pie isn't exactly the kind of person that can keep a secret for long but she can hold for at least half an hour, right?
    Instead: This idea never comes up. If it wasn't for Rarity herself deciding to come over at the last moment, this soufflé could have been deflated as well.
  • Applejack wants to take a cornucopia picture with her friends. Rarity thinks they are actually dressing as the fruits in it.
    You'd Think: For Rarity to ask Applejack regarding the details before jumping to conclusions.
    Instead: She never clarifies with Applejack regarding the details, resulting in a lot of unnecessary effort.
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    IDW Comics 
  • My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (IDW) Issue 1 to 4
    • Queen Chrysalis and her changeling army have kidnapped the Cutie Mark Crusaders, forcing the Mane 6 to go to the changeling kingdom to rescue them. Along the way, the group is split up into pairs when they venture into a cave, while the changelings hide in wait, spreading resentment among the group.
      You'd Expect: The Mane 6, knowing they're facing off against shape-shifting creatures with the ability to mimic their voices, ignore the insults being thrown around and continue through their adventure.
      Instead: The Mane 6 completely take the insults at face value, believing the rest of the group think so little of each other. This causes division among the group, and they eventually split up. They do reconcile afterwards, though.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (IDW) Holidays 2014
    • An unknown party has been spreading disharmony around Canterlot High School by posting embarrassing secrets under the name Anon-A-Miss. Without any solid evidence, the school assumes that Sunset Shimmer is Anon-A-Miss, thinking that her previous Heel–Face Turn was just a fake, and that she's gone right back to being the same school-terrorizing Alpha Bitch that she used to be. Sunset counters that she is sincere about changing.
      You'd Expect: The rest of the Equestria Girls would stick up for Sunset, since they know how hard she's been working to turn over a new leaf in spite of all the terrible things that have been said about her. At the very least, they could believe Sunset as she has nothing to gain from what she's accused of.
      Or At Least: Do a proper investigation into Sunset in order to find proof of whether she's telling the truth or not.
      Instead: The Humane Five turn on Sunset along with the rest of CHS, believing that Sunset is the culprit in spite of the complete lack of evidence against her.
      Even Worse: This same issue — not believing a friend who insists that they didn't stab them in the back — is a big issue the Equestria Girls had with each other in the first movie, when Sunset was still a villain. It seems like they didn't learn their lesson.

  • The Good, the Bad, and the Ponies:
    • Issue #25-26: A gang of bulls has been terrorizing the Old-West-style town of Canter Creek, robbing people for food and supplies while conspiring to take over the chili pepper farm that is a crucial part of the town's economy. After trying and failing to defend the townsfolk from the bulls, Applejack proposes that Twilight use magic to take them down. Twilight, however, has moral objections to using magic to fight non-magical citizens of Equestria, as opposed to the monsters she had fought before.
      You'd Expect: That Twilight would understand that "use magic" does not necessarily mean "directly assault them with magical energy". She could just as easily use ropes to tie them up with her telekinesis (as Trixie did to Applejack in "Boast Busters"), teleport them into a jail cell, or otherwise restrain them without injuring them so that they could be properly brought to justice.
      Instead: She maintains her absolutist anti-magic stance until the end, when she has the farm declared a historic site, then uses her magic to imprison the bulls after they burn one of its barns. So, using magic to stop crimes against common citizens is immoral, but using magic to stop a crime against the government is totally fine. Okay...

  • Siege of the Crystal Empire:
    • Issue #34: In the beginning of the arc, Radiant Hope goes around as a cloaked figure, approaching Flim, Flam, Iron Will and Lightning Dust who are down on their luck. She promises each of them redemption (and revenge against the Apples and Rainbow Dash for the Flim Flam brothers and Lightning Dust respectively) in exchange for them sabotaging the Crystal Faire.
      You'd Think: Flim, Flam, Iron Will, and Lightning Dust would not go about trusting a total stranger and consider that doing so could put the Crystal Empire or worse Equestria at risk.
      Instead: They allow themselves to be lured in by the hooded figure's promise without a second thought. They only realize that they Didn't Think This Through when they are told that their actions will result in the release of the Umbrum.
    • During the fight scene in Issue #35, Flim and Flam approach Pinkie Pie who is using her party cannon as a weapon. Flim asks Pinkie if he can take a look at her cannon.
      You'd Expect: Pinkie Pie to refuse and not let either of them get anywhere near the cannon except to maybe shoot them out of it.
      Instead: She shows the cannon to Film and Flam and assures them that they could fit a pony inside it. The brothers stuff her inside the cannon and shoot her into a cage, knocking Rarity in there as well.
    • Near the end of Issue #36, Twilight and her friends confront Radiant Hope in King Sombra's study where Sombra is about to release the Umbrum into the Cyrstal Empire. Twilight works up a huge burst of magic in a last-ditch effort to stop him, despite Cadance's objection.
      You'd Expect: Everypony to get out of the way so she can attack Sombra. Twilight has been proven to have powerful magic and a burst that could take out Sombra could very well destroy anything in its way.
      Instead: Radiant Hope jumps in the way of Twilight's beam, despite knowing Sombra is LEAGUES stronger and tougher than she is. She leaves herself seriously injured and Sombra comes out unscathed. Sombra then opens the door, releasing the Umbrum.
    • In the Downer Beginning of #37 — the Umbrum currently have a Near-Villain Victory, and are discussing how to finish Twilight and Cadance once and for all. Then the latter two suggest being taken to a very-public, very-specific place to make the best statement to the Umbrum's enemies.
      You'd Expect: Rabia, the Umbrum leader, to immediately suspect a trap and refuse — especially when Sombra Lampshades just that.
      Instead: She gleefully agrees, even congratulating Twilight and Cadance on their sadistic-sounding idea... which enables their friends, allies, and families to attack the Umbrum in a series of events ultimately resulting in their defeat and reimprisonment. Welp, Sombra Warned Her.
  • Election:
    • Issue #46: Ponyville's new playground is inexplicably destroyed by an earthquake. At a town hall meeting, Mayor Mare warns the residents that earthquakes can happen at any time and that they need to be on guard in case another one happens.
      You'd Expect: The citizens of Ponyville to keep level heads and take the mayor's advice. She had no control over how the earthquake, a natural disaster, happened and assured the town that she had ponies looking into it.
      Instead: They throw the mayor under the bus, blaming her for misuse of the land and accusing her of not having the town prepared in case another earthquake strikes. This allows Filthy Rich to throw his hat into the ring and run against Mayor Mare.
  • Cosmos
    • Issue #75: Discord learns that the Mane Six are retrieving magical stars that are a Sealed Evil in a Six Pack for Cosmos, who horrifies even him. By this time Twilight, Celestia, and Luna have been possessed by them.
      You'd Expect: Discord would go and warn the rest of the Mane Six about this.
      Instead: He goes into hiding, resulting in the none the wiser Mane Six to let them fall into Cosmos' clutches.
  • Legends of Magic:
    • Issue #2: Rockhoof has become a decorated member of the Mighty Helm after saving his village from a volcanic eruption. His friends throw him a feast to celebrate in spite of his willingness to train and become stronger. He shows up late to training after eating so much the night before but still manages to impress the Mighty Helm.
      You'd Expect: Rockhoof to know his limits when he parties and to balance his training accordingly.
      Instead: He skips his training sessions to party and eat with his friends day after day.
      So: Time passes, and the volcano begins to show signs of life. Rockhoof's captain, Steela Oresdotter, orders him to step forward only to discover that a life of partying has taken a toll on his body.
      You'd Expect: Steela to tell Rockhoof that he's too out of shape to investigate the volcano and to send somepony else.
      Instead: She sends Rockhoof up there anyway. His lack of fitness puts himself and two accompanying guards in danger, and Steela only realizes this when he retreats in failure.

    The Movie (SPOILERS UNMARKED) 
The ponies' big theatrical release isn't immune to these moments.
  • At the beginning of the movie, Tempest Shadow arrives and begins her invasion of Canterlot. Her Obsidian Orbs have the power to turn anypony they hit to stone, and their technology bypasses magic as demonstrated when Cadance tried and failed to shield everypony. Celestia attempts to tell Luna to go enlist the aid of the hippogriffs.
    You'd Expect: For Celestia to keep moving and try and find some sort of cover.
    Instead: She just stands there and practically lets herself get hit by an orb. Lampshaded in this fanfic.
    After That, You'd Expect: Luna would keep an eye below and dodge any orbs thrown her way.
    Instead: She doesn't and suffers the same fate as her sister, only above the ground; she would have shattered upon impact had Twilight not saved her, and she would have been next had Rainbow Dash and Derpy not done the same for her.
  • The ponies' journey takes them to Klugetown, a Wretched Hive that sells various animals and body parts on the market and would most likely find a way to sell the ponies themselves.
    You'd Expect: All the ponies would keep a low profile and try and find the information they're looking for.
    Instead: Pinkie Pie starts asking around town, drawing their attention and leading to them being surrounded by their inhabitants.
    You'd Then Expect: For the ponies to either fight back in self defense, or to flee. Applejack has Super Strength, Rainbow Dash is the Fastest Thing Alive, Fluttershy has "the stare", Twilight is a magical expert, Spike is a dragon. Even Rarity's been known to get her hooves dirty from time to time.
    Instead: None of them do anything and they have to be bailed out (and lured) by Capper.
    You'd THEN Expect: The ponies to be wary of this cat man they just met. Yes, he saved them; but this is still a town where underhanded methods are commonplace.
    Instead: Twilight is the only one who's suspicious and everypony else is completely aghast when it turns out Capper originally intended to sell them to the local mob boss.
  • On Captain Celaeno's ship, Rainbow Dash successfully convinces her and her crew to go back to being the swashbuckling rogues of the skies they once were, in turn convincing them to give them a ride to Mount Aris where the Hippogriffs are located. Meanwhile, Capper (undergoing a Heel–Face Turn of his own) had successfully drawn Tempest Shadow off course, away from the group, though is taken as a hostage.
    You'd Expect: For that to just be the end of it; Celaeno would give them a ride to Mount Aris before Tempest found out, and everything would have been all hunky-dory.
    Instead: She gets so excited that she performs a Sonic Rainboom, in the middle of the sky, where they could easily be seen. As a result, Grubber sees this and notifies Tempest of what's going on, leading to Capper being found out and him and the pirates to be nearly killed.
    You'd Then Expect: The Mane 6 and Spike to completely remove all traces of their presence on the ship and bail when it's clear that Tempest isn't falling for Celaeno's bluff.
    Instead: They not only scream out as they escape the ship, but also left the main map with an X on Mount Aris behind. Tempest's search got narrowed down to a single island instead of hitting a dead end, since Capper could have easily said that he himself was lied to or Locked Out of the Loop while the pirates feigned ignorance if it wasn't for the map's discovery.
  • The Mane 6 attempt to ask Queen Novo for her and her peoples' help, since she possesses a magical pearl that holds the power to defeat the Storm King.
    You'd Expect: They'd explain that they've been sent by Celestia, whom Novo knows personally, if the end credits are any indication.
    Instead: It never crosses anypony's mind to do this. Predictably, Novo refuses to help, having dealt with the Storm King once already and wanting to keep her people safe. So, the ponies attempt to persuade her into giving them the pearl by socializing with the other seaponies. Unbeknownst to them, due to the above events, Twilight is becoming frustrated with her friends not taking things seriously and treating the mission as just another fun-filled adventure.
    You'd Expect: Twilight to suck it up and go along with her friends' actions just this one time. And from the looks of it, they've nearly secured themselves some valuable allies.
    You'd Also Expect: Twilight to make her frustrations with her friends known, so they can be more empathetic to her plight and take things more seriously.
    Instead: She decides that the only way to save Equestria is to steal Novo's pearl while using her friends as unwitting distractions, just as the queen was about to agree to give it to them! This gets the Mane 6 banished from Seaquestria and destroys their only chance of an alliance between them and the hippogriffs/seaponies, while also putting a huge dent in their friendship.
    You'd Then Expect: For Twilight to apologize on her own behalf and try to come up with a plan B.
    Instead: She doesn't accept her own failure at first, argues that she wouldn't have done it otherwise, and angrily tells Pinkie that she'd be better off without friends like them. Twilight quickly comes to regret what she said.
    You'd THEN Expect: Now that Twilight is calm enough to reason with, the other Mane 5 would stick together and try to talk it out. As Twilight said, she is the last princess and one of the only hopes they have.
    Instead: The ponies apparently learned nothing from Cadance and Shining Armor's wedding and leave her alone. The only one who stays is Spike. As a result, Twilight is found by Tempest Shadow's minions and captured within a Magitek cage that can't be busted via any sort of magic blast, though Spike manages to get away.
    You'd THEN Expect: She would at least try her teleportation spell that she knew all the way back in the first season to escape. Or better yet, turn herself into something small like a Breezy and try to flee.
    Instead: She Forgets About Her Powers and keeps blasting at it, thus having to be saved by the others plus all the friends they made on their journey.
    You'd ALSO Expect: For Tempest to send her minions after Spike, or at least trail him to the other Mane Five so they can get captured as well.
    Instead: She doesn't and pretty much allows the rebellion to happen.
  • In a flashback, Tempest is playing ball with her friends as a filly. Eventually, the ball ends up in an Ursa Minor cave, and she volunteers to go in and retrieve it. However, she ends up accidentally awakening the Ursa Minor.
    You'd Expect: She'd just grab the ball and high-tail it out of there. Even if they're only babies compared to their Major counterparts, Ursa Minors are still extremely dangerous.
    Instead: She tries to fight the Ursa, which leads to her losing her horn.
  • The Storm King finally makes his proper entrance and manages to drain the magic from Celestia, Luna, Cadance, and Twilight with the Staff of Sacanas. Now that he has all this immense power, he can do whatever he wants with it.
    You'd Expect: For him to make sure Twilight, being the only one not turned to stone, couldn't escape, and also to spend some time training with the staff in case anypony were to oppose him.
    Instead: For no reason at all, he blasts the cage Twilight was in, leaving her free to do whatever her lack of magic would allow her to do, and spends most of his time fiddling around with the sun and moon.
  • As a result of the above incident with the Ursa Minor, Tempest Shadow loyally serves the Storm King who promised to restore her broken horn in exchange. Once Tempest completes her end of the deal, she requests he complete his.
    You'd Expect: Given his preachment for Pragmatic Villainy in the comics, he'd honor his word if possible, otherwise offering alternate reparation or an excuse for not doing so. Or that he'd deal with her before the following.
    Instead: He admits he lied about the deal, rubbing it in her face. Guess how that works out.
  • The Mane Five manage to reach Twilight, knock the Staff of Sacanas out of the Storm King's grasp, and finally reconcile. However, the staff is now in a dangerous location near the storm that was created earlier, with the Storm King aiming to reclaim it.
    You'd Expect: Either A) Rainbow Dash, being the fastest and most experienced flier, would swoop in and grab it before the Storm King has a chance; B) Applejack would try and lasso it to safety; or C) Rarity, being the only one who has her magic, to levitate it away.
    Instead: They hold onto each other and try to guide Twilight, magicless barely flight-trained Twilight, to the staff while the Storm King makes his climb. Granted, it still works, but only after Twilight is sucked into the storm and briefly presumed dead.
  • After the storm clears and everypony is safe and sound, it turns out the Storm King, too, did not die and has an Obsidian Orb in his hand.
    You'd Expect: He would just throw the orb once he was in good range and end it right there.
    Instead: He just takes his time, allowing Tempest Shadow to notice and take the hit and infect him with the orb's own gas. Nice knowin' ya, SK.

Alternative Title(s): My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic IDW

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