- Alternate Character Interpretation:
- Derpy being more of a Dumb Blonde in this special could simply be a result of being burnt out from the holiday mail rush.
- Everypony being convinced by Fluttershy and Applejack's Bad "Bad Acting"; were they really fooled, or did they just acknowledge that they were making valid points regardless?
- Fluttershy being unhelpful when Rainbow's trying to ask what she likes and dislikes. Genuine obliviousness or picked up some trolling from Discord?
- Author's Saving Throw: Cadance and Shining Armor get some time to shine. They get in some well-deserved snarking at Twilight during her freakout, and get a chance to show off during the assault of the pudding, with a dabble of adorable flirting included.
- Awesome Music: "One More Day". Both the lyrics and the tune capture the combination of anticipation and stress. It's also the first MLP song to use the trotting-horse rhythm since "Who's a Silly Pony?" in G1.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: The Gift-Givers of the Grove have proven to be very popular with the fandom, for being magic flying reindeer and collectively Equestria's equivalent to Santa Claus.
- Fridge Brilliance:
- Rainbow Dash initially being irritated by Discord's presence, despite having no problems being around him from "What About Discord?" all the way through to "Celestial Advice", is most likely because of what happened in "A Matter of Principals" (where Discord sent the Mane Six away for days on a fake friendship mission). Rainbow probably still held a grudge against him for that little trick.
- When Applejack first suggests the gift exchange idea, Pinkie is upset about having to choose a gift for just one friend, rather than many. In the end, everybody is eating and sharing the pudding that was Pinkie's gift from Twilight, meaning that Pinkie's gift also gave her something she could give to all her other friends as well, which was what she originally wanted to do.
- Fridge Horror: The winterchilla transforms into the giant, savage winterzilla every time night falls. It's a good thing they're so rare, or they could cause a lot of damage around Equestria (especially since not every pony Speaks Fluent Animal).
- "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The "Great Escape Room" short, preceding the special, first aired on December 11, 2018, became this for the Polish audience on January 4, 2019, when five teenage girls died of suffocation due to a fire in an escape room. The Polish version of the short premiered three days later, on January 7, 2019, making it even harsher in hindsight.
- Hilarious in Hindsight:
- Shining Armor's term for Twilight going cray-cray, "Twili-nanas". That's right, more bananas for fans of the web video "Friendship Is Magic Bitch".
- "Generous Gifts", a fanfic from 2015, matches several beats of this episode: drawing names out of a hat, Spike trying to trade for Rarity, and him ending up impressing her with a gift that's a gesture rather than material.
- Les Yay: Rarity and Applejack have a small "blink and you'll miss it" moment during "The True Gift of Gifting".
- Memetic Mutation: The face Twilight makes◊ when she decides to make pudding for Pinkie Pie goes straight into Deranged Animation with how off-the-wall it is. It caught on as a reaction image very quickly.
- Retroactive Recognition: Believe it or not, that's Grounder as Pistachio's father.
- The Woobie: Marble Pie's blink-and-you-miss-it cameo in the opening song where she watches Big Macintosh and Sugar Belle kiss and comes close to crying.
YMMV / My Little Pony: Best Gift Ever