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Applejack is a female Earth pony and one of the main characters of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic. She lives and works at Sweet Apple Acres with her grandmother Granny Smith, her older brother Big McIntosh, her younger sister Apple Bloom, and her dog Winona. She represents the element of honesty. Applejack is dependable and loyal, always willing to help anybody in need. She is shown to be supportive and protective of Apple Bloom and her friends. She works at Sweet Apple Acres mainly as an apple bucker, though the Apples occasionally farm carrots and corn as well. Most importantly, she is also Fred Jones' best friend.
Development and Design
Applejack is one of the only two members of the main cast who were part of the original My Little Pony cast in the 1980s animated series, the other member being Spike. Lauren Faust, the show's developer, was inspired to create Applejack by her childhood toy G1 pony Applejack. Faust intended to use more characters from the first My Little Pony series, but Hasbro did not maintain the trademarks to nearly all of the original character names and most names had to be replaced. Faust used the character's G1 color scheme, abandoning the dark red color from the G3 toy line. Voice actress Ashleigh Ball has cited country singers Miley Cyrus, Dolly Parton and Reba McEntire as inspiration for Applejack's voice and dialect. She shares some personality traits with the G1 pony named Starlight.
Applejack is also the name of a strong alcoholic beverage produced from apples. In the episode Bridle Gossip, poison joke causes Applejack to shrink. Spikecalls her "Apple Teeny," pronounced the same as appletini, an apple-flavored alcoholic cocktail. Applejack is the first pony to have her name abbreviated in the show. In Applebuck Season, Twilight calls her "A.J.," a nickname that is used again by Spike in Boast Busters, Big McIntosh in Winter Wrap Up, Twilight Sparkle and Rainbow Dash in The Last Roundup, and Pinkie Pie in MM Mystery on the Friendship Express.
- "This is your sister Applejack - remember? The loyalest of friends and the most dependable of ponies?!"
- — Applejack, talking to her brother
Applejack is a brave, reliable, strong, mature, and hard-working pony, although headstrong about doing things on her own. In the episode Applebuck Season, she insists on tackling the annual apple harvest all by herself while her brother Big McIntosh recovers from an injury. Big McIntosh doubts her ability to complete the seemingly insurmountable task, but Applejack is determined. After she diverts a cattle stampede that was headed toward Ponyville, the townsfolk hold a ceremony in her honor, where her close friends champion her helpfulness. She receives her trophy without much fanfare and goes back to her applebucking. She becomes exhausted, but continues to buck trees and repeatedly refuses Twilight Sparkle's many offers of assistance. She eventually faints at the sight of the scores of apple trees she still has to harvest, and finally looks past her pride and accepts help from her friends. She shows in Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000 that she truly learned this lesson, as she was touched by her friend's offers to help as 'honorary family members' and immediately accepts.
In Apple Family Reunion, when Granny Smith gives the job of hosting the reunion to Applejack, she is determined to host as many activities as she can so they can create many good memories. However, despite her good intentions, Applejack becomes too caught up in her planning to realize that the most important thing about the reunion is to bond with your family. Eventually, she learns her lesson, and brings the family back together to rebuild the demolished barn.
Applejack speaks with a Southern American accent, a thick southern drawl, similar to the accent of the southwestern Missouri and Oklahoma Ozarks, where there is a great number of apple orchards. In numerous episodes, she refers to members of her friends and family as "sugarcube" as a sign of affection. She has no reservations about getting dirty or messy or having any proper eating etiquette, much to Rarity's dismay during a sleepover in Look Before You Sleep, walking in Twilight's library with muddy hooves, chewing with her mouth open and burping, and unwilling to bother with making the bed. Applejack says in A Dog and Pony Show, "Now I'm used to pickin' myself up and dustin' myself off, but Rarity won't even touch mud unless it's imported." A rare exception is seen in A Bird in the Hoof, when she is reluctant to begin eating at Princess Celestia's brunch because she does not know which dish is "proper" to eat first. In Sisterhooves Social, Applejack does not take offense when Rarity calls the competition held at the Apple farm "uncouth". Applejack simply tells Sweetie Belle that her big sister Rarity thinkseverything is uncouth, but that she will come around in time. She gently offers Rarity advice on how to compromise and better get along with Sweetie Belle, which Rarity gratefully accepts. Applejack dislikes things that are "girly" and "fancy", like the froufrou dresses in Suited for Success. Applejack describes in a flashback in The Cutie Mark Chronicles how she tried being a pony of elegance for a short time as a young filly by moving to Manehattan to live with her Aunt and Uncle Orange, but ultimately decided to return to the farm after she realized that she was homesick and found it hard to fit in. When Apple Bloom starts speaking French in The Cutie Pox, Applejack says her sister is "speakin' in fancy". She is almost always seen wearing a light brown stetson hat, which she usually removes before sleeping, and is the only one of the six main characters to keep her mane and tail tied back in a "ponytail". Applejack takes great pride in her hat and seldom goes anywhere without it. In the episode A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2 she hastily puts on her hat over her headband while Rarity is busy crying for Princess Cadance and Shining Armor. During the episode The Mysterious Mare Do Well, Applejack is the only pony to keep the hat on when Rainbow Dash realizes that it was her friends that were the hero stealing her thunder. Also, in the many times that she has been made to wear a dress, she usually has a revised version of her stetson. Even her handpicked dress in Suited For Success had a hat, although it wasn't her normal one. Applejack also has more than one hat as shown in Magic Duel because Big McIntosh, Apple Bloom, Granny Smith, and Applejack herself are each wearing copies of the hat at the same time. In Somepony to Watch Over Me, the Apple family home is shown to have a whole closet with Applejack's hats (and pink bows for Apple Bloom).
Stubbornness and Giving in
In Look Before You Sleep, she lets her feud with Rarity ruin Twilight Sparkle's sleepover; and in Fall Weather Friends, she allows herself to become just as underhanded as Rainbow Dash in her attempt to win. In both of these situations, she eventually lets go of her pride and is the first to apologize. She is quick to argue with Rainbow Dash in Over a Barrel, worsening the tension between the residents of Appleloosa and the buffalo. In Applebuck Season, she shows great resilience when being offered help, working herself past exhaustion in the midst of trying to harvest the entire apple orchard on her own. Her fatigue has shown through considerably by the time she finally accepts assistance from her friends. In Bats!, Applejack clashes with Fluttershy over how to deal with a swarm of vampire fruit bats. When her methods lead to Fluttershy becoming a bat herself, Applejack soon relents, giving a portion of the orchard to the vampire fruit bats.
Empathy and Care
Applejack is often shown to be one of the more empathetic members of the main cast, putting the needs and feelings of others before her own. In The Ticket Master, Applejack states that her reason for wanting to attend the Grand Galloping Gala is so she can sell enough treats to buy a replacement hip forGranny Smith. In Dragonshy, despite the other ponies' impatience (with the exception of Pinkie Pie) with Fluttershy, Applejack is willing to take the long way around the mountain with her in order to help her up. Applejack is also the first to notice Twilight Sparkle's glumness in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1, and the only one to apologize for not listening to her in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2. In Sleepless in Ponyville she is the only pony who notices that Scootaloo is abnormally nervous and jumpy. Applejack pulls back Rainbow Dash by her tail when she is about to do something rash, as seen in the episodes Friendship is Magic, part 1 and part 2, The Ticket Master, Dragonshy, The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000, and The Crystal Empire - Part 2. In Princess Twilight Sparkle - Part 1, Applejack is the one to assure Twilight that they and their friends will always be connected through the Elements of Harmony. She is also the first to take Twilight's safety into consideration for Equestria's sake in Princess Twilight Sparkle - Part 2. On occasion, Applejack gets carried away with her empathy, especially with Apple Bloom. In Bridle Gossip, Applejack becomes overprotective of Apple Bloom when Zecora comes into Ponyville. Her overprotective nature comes into play again in the episode Somepony to Watch Over Me.
- "Applejack, who reassured me when I was in doubt, represents the spirit of... honesty!"
- — Twilight Sparkle, Friendship is Magic, part 2
Applejack represents the element of honesty. Twilight Sparkle deduces this in Friendship is Magic, part 2, explaining that Applejack demonstrated her honesty when they faced their challenges against Nightmare Moon. Applejack finds it difficult to go against her natural honesty in Party of One when she has to lie about why she cannot attend Gummy's after-birthday party. She sweats and grins nervously under Pinkie Pie's scrutiny despite having the most credible excuse: needing to buck apples. In The Return of Harmony Part 1, Applejack is the first pony to be hypnotized and brainwashed by Discord, causing her and her hat to turn into a greyer shade. Applejack becomes a compulsive liar, throwing hurtful and sarcastic jabs at her friends. Initially, her lies are not particularly convincing or malicious, but they grow more ridiculous and harmful as the corruption intensifies. She paid for one of her lies when she tells Rarity that Twilight told her to split the rock and Rarity starts doing martial arts on her. Also when she states that she doesn't know where Rarity was and in turn got beat up by Twilight. She was also bowled over when Twilight was performing the memory spell right after she asked "Where you went when I was battlin' Discord?". This may also lead to believe that Applejack herself might have believed her lies to an extent as she mention that she was fighting Discord before to Granny Smith. She is also the first pony to have her corruption cured by Twilight, and one of the first things she does is apologize. In The Last Roundup she refuses to tell her friends why she will not explain why she is working on a cherry farm in Dodge Junction. She avoids telling the truth throughout the episode until the end, at which point she explains that she did not win first place nor any prize money in the Equestria Rodeo, so she got a job at the farm to earn money for Ponyville. The limits of Applejack's honesty are put to the test in Leap of Faith. When Flim and Flam sell their placebo potion to Granny Smith, Applejack endorses the product, while knowing it is a fake, because it visibly makes Granny Smith feel happier. Once the placebo effect leads Granny Smith to attempt a dangerous dive, she turns honest about the product. Her honesty rubs off on Silver Shill for the product, who comes to realize he had been helping to deceive other ponies.
Applejack is seen to possess a huge appetite, as seen in A Bird in the Hoof and Apple Family Reunion. Granny Smith recalls the time when an Apple family relative found Applejack as a foal eating all the apple fritters, showing that she had the appetite of a "full-grown stallion".
Applejack possesses incredible physical strength due to, as she explains in Fall Weather Friends, years of applebucking, the practice of harvesting apple trees by kicking them to knock the apples down, which is first named in Applebuck Season. The examples of this include, but not limited to:
- Applebuck Season: Even when she is sleep-deprived, Applejack clears all of the apples out of a tree in a single kick.
- Fall Weather Friends: In the bucking contest, Applejack uses one hind hoof and bucks the hammer so hard that it breaks and sends the bell flying.
- Mysterious Mare Do Well: While dressed up, she stops a bus from falling with a single kick.
- My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Her human counterpart lifts a table up with one arm while it took two fairly large guys to lift up another.
- Leap of Faith: When trying to 'rescue' Granny Smith while the latter is swimming, Applejack knocks over a tall tree with a single kick.
It should be noted that in the episode Over a Barrel, the citizens of Appleloosa need to work in groups and kick multiple times to harvest apples from a single tree.
Applejack possesses extraordinary strength and athletic abilities. She and Rainbow Dash compete in the Iron Pony competition in Fall Weather Friends, where their athletic feats draw a sizable crowd. Applejack demonstrates her skills with a lasso in Applebuck Season, Boast Busters, Look Before You Sleep, Bridle Gossip,Fall Weather Friends, and The Return of Harmony Part 2. In The Mysterious Mare Do Well, Applejack refers to her left and right hind hooves as "Bucky McGillycuddy" and "Kicks McGee" respectively.
Pinkie Pie describes Applejack as "one of the best bakers ever" in Applebuck Season. Applejack sells apple-based foods at a concession stand in The Best Night Ever. In an earlier episode, Applejack describes to Twilight how she will use the money from the concession stand to upgrade the barn roof, buy a new plow for Big McIntosh, and replace Granny Smith's hip. In A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1, Princess Celestia asks Applejack to prepare refreshments and the wedding cake forPrincess Cadance and Shining Armor's royal wedding. She cheers up a grumpy Twilight with an apple fritter during the wedding preparations. In Apple Family Reunion, Applejack shows her skill at making apple fritters to her relatives. In the episode Rainbow Falls, she makes an abundance of apple brown bettys for the Ponyville air relay team.
She stops a cow stampede in Applebuck Season with only the help of her dog, Winona. Twilight Sparkle seeks her help first when she is looking for a way to herd the Parasprites out of Ponyville in Swarm of the Century. Applejack and her family also herded the Pinkie Pies together as Twilight had instructed in Too Many Pinkie Pies.
Playing Musical Instruments
In Swarm of the Century, Pinkie Pie borrows a harmonica from Applejack to help control the parasprite infestation. In A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2, the picture montage shown during Love is in Bloom shows Applejack playing a fiddle as Apple Fritter and Meadow Song dance. In Pinkie Apple Pie, Applejack plays a banjo during the song Apples to the Core.
During the royal wedding preparations, Applejack crafts a heart-shaped ice sculpture.
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