So seeing Ghostkaiba talk about his love of tail-biting a week back (I ain't gonna judge XD) got me thinking. MLP has a number of running themes and gags that the writers and animators sneak in, even if you don't notice them at first. And there's quite a few of them too, from ponies being knocked off-screen, to the fact that something gets knocked over every time somepony sees Zecora, to the almost odd significance of Tuesday, to... well, Derpy, obviously.
While the antics of Pinkie Pie will always be my favorite running gag, another recurring theme remains a very close second, and that's Applejack's cute moments.Applejack has always been shown to be a very down-to-earth pony (pun intended) who doesn't put much stock in being graceful, socially conscious, or "girly", and values hard work over almost everything else. So whenever she has those moments where she lets her guard down to allow some genuine femininity and... shall we say, fragility to shine through, it's always really satisfying to see -- at least, to me it is. I think I first saw a glimpse of this side of Applejack in Bridle Gossip, when she holds onto Apple Bloom during Pinkie's Evil Enchantress song. Listening to her go on about keeping Apple Bloom safe from Zecora and then seeing her do this was both hilarious and adorable.
My favorite cute Applejack scene of season 1: acting motherly toward Bloomberg in the opening to Over a Barrel.
It's moments like these that make me really appreciate Applejack as a character. Like Rarity's tough side or Rainbow Dash's appreciation for books, they add a layer of depth to a pony who's otherwise seen as plain, uninteresting, or a "background pony". If I see more of these in season 4, AJ might just move up a spot or two on my favorite ponies list.
But I digress.
What's your favorite MLP recurring theme or running gag? Twilight's neurosis when it comes to pleasing Princess Celestia? Rainbow Dash's tendency to crash into ponies and buildings? How about the fact that, for whatever reason, the barn at Sweet Apple Acres can never stay up?
Hit up the comments below and opinionate away!