Scholars have long sought to define a best pony, by nebulous criteria that differ from fan to fan. No good! We must be precise. Reject the vague.
Instead of 'best' ranking, propose a property, and rank our beloved characters by that property. For example, ambition:1. Rainbow Dash.
She wants to be the best flier in a species of flier; top athlete, top aerial performer, fastest pone in the west. And she doesn't just dream it – RBD trains hard and constantly seeks competitive sporting opportunities. Her intermediate goal is entry into a rigorous crew of flight masters, with the infrastructure and drive to be the best. Cuz that's how you get good – train your ass off with the best.2. Rarity.
Like Rainbow Dash, she strives for fame and glory through dedication to her trade (although she'll take it by other means, if available – such as marry Prince Bluenuts). She's a hardcore fashion artist, sewing her horn to the bone. She seeks opportunities to show her work to the powerful critic voices. However, Rarity does not
seek out fellow artists with whom to hone her craft, or to inspire her work to greater heights. That extra edge is missing.3. Applejack
bucks like there's no tomorrow, endlessly shoring up her farm, and moonlights as an amateur athlete good enough to win medals at rodeos. Not to mention, she's a pillar of her community. Her sights are never set very high, however – her greatest ambition seems to be earning a modest sum of money so that she can fix up her farm and her town. Her ambition is provincial: climb an income bracket or two, support her local community. Admirable, essential. But she doesn't aim for the stars.4. Twilight Sparkle.
Twilight works and studies and practices and hones her skills like there's no tomorrow – and maybe there wouldn't be
a tomorrow if she didn't. But, goals? Impress Celestia, enjoy friends, resolve crisis if there happens to be one. Like many a student, she's forgotten that education and its workings are stepping stones to action. Grades/teacher approval are feedback mechanisms, not final goals, and learning itself is done to allow world-altering action… not because having abilities you don't use is super cool or whatever.5. Pinkie Pie
seeks to know, befriend, and cheer up every pony or non-pony pePost too long. Click here to view the full text.