Unpopular opinion time

DarkObsidian
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EAW Panzerfuchs
Well, it was a pleasure to hear all your different opinions on this subject. In my opinion, these are the good moments in fandom where you can passionately discuss such a topic. There is only one question left: What would happen in your opinion if the three petrified villains would ever get free again? ;-)
Background Pony #6071
@Spinny
I don’t think she is. She seems like someone who’s really neurotic who had a yearslong mental breakdown. She genuinely believed cutie marks and friendship were negatives because her only friend got his cutiemark and left her. Her response was not proportional at all but she is a very powerful magic user who seemingly had a lot of underlying issues but I don’t think she at her worst was as evil inside as Cozy. She realized herself her actions were hurting ponies and would end up destroying the country and willingly stopped. Cozy showed no such remorse when she tried to kill the main cast and take over the country. She knows she’s evil and doesn’t care if it doesn’t benefit her
asdtroi

@gingerninja666
You say that, but she only tried to attack her townsfolk in the heat of the moment, when emotions were running high, and instantly pivoted back to acting like she was doing them a favour even though the jig was entirely up at that point. What Starlight thinks and what she feels are different things a lot of the time. You could say that internal confusion inherently gives Twilight something to attack, unlike Cozy who was completely uniform in what she wanted. Also, I guess the weight of their actions comes down to how I view justice personally. To me, Starlight and Cozy having equivalent actions doesn't matter much because of the difference in their motives. You might say a dead person is a dead person either way, but if one person did it in a fit of anger and felt terrible afterward, and the other danced down the street cackling about how awesome doing it was, I'm going to think that one is more capable of being reformed than the other.

Like how Chrysalis rejected her in the heat of the moment? Or how Cozy threw a tantrum after her defeat and with Rusty Bucket? She was only pretending to do them a favour at that point. Would her actions still be as forgivable if Twilight didn't get there on time? Starlight knew what she wanted. Internal confusion is also present in Cozy as evident by her lack of proper understanding of friendship. Either way compared to Starlight and Discord, she was treated very unfairly. And again, Starlight felt no remorse for her action until Twilight started helping her which is also true for Discord. Why do you expect Cozy to feel bad for her action and want to improve when no one helps her realize that or even give her a chance to do so.

That's not what I mean when I say "faltering persona" though. I don't mean that the character makes a mistake. I mean that they show a hint of something that lets Twilight see through the mask they've created for themselves to something she may be able to redeem. With Starlight, that faltering was stuff like her genuine hurt at the loss of her village, or her reaction to the ashlands timeline. It let Twilight know that Starlight was a hurt pony lashing out at the world. Cozy, even if she was wrong about friendship, like I said earlier, that doesn't adress her primary motive of wanting power, and the kind of stuff she's willing to do to get it. Twilight's teachings probably didn't give her the idea to manipulate and lock up her "friends" for the sake of amassing personal power, or teach her that she should commit continent spanning acts of terrorism with the intent of making any opposition to her powerless. Her misunderstanding of friendship is a byproduct of how she sees the world, not the cause of it, and how she sees the world showed no signs of buckling at the end of School Raze. Cozy's presumption that Friendship is power technically not wrong. It is, especially in a world like Equestria. What Cozy missed is that there's more to life than power and the pursuit of it, and I don't think she shows Twilight that she would be capable of accepting that.

In that case, Cozy Glow's thing to redeem could simply be her method of gaining power. If she wants to control others, Twilight could guide her to a political carear or maybe try to convince her of how she and her friends gained the power to win every time. Cozy's still young and Twilight barely tried to get anything out of her. Is it truly out of the realm of possibility to teach her other things beyond power? To actually give her a reason to want to change her ways? Discord never showed signs of accepting anything other then chaos until Fluttershy started helping him and Twilight tried to convince Starlight out of doing what she did even before she knew of her past. Cozy has plenty of things to latch onto. She just needs the time and effort put into grabbing it. As it stands, Twilight mostly hung out with a pesona pretending to be Cozy Glow and then barely made an effort to try and get to know the real thing. With Starlight and even Tempest, she put in a lot more effort into trying to help them even before she had something to latch on to.

A. Discord was only moved by Fluttershy's kindness because he didn't think he was tricking her.

B. Discord must not have thought he was tricking her because her kindness moved him.

All I'm saying in this regard is that Discord only got moved by Fluttershy's kindness because it was given to him willingly despite Fluttershy knowing that he was a villain and refused to give up on him. Something Cozy never got.
Background Pony #7CFD
@Background Pony #6071
There is no proof Cozy's a psychopath and even if she was she's still young enough to taught to control her urges. And pony hell did hold her. It was Discord who broke her out.
asdtroi

@DarkObsidian
That depends on who's freeing them.

If someone who wants to reform them is the one to free them there are two options:
Its either Twilight's royal order or through people strong enough to hold them down while they get reformed. In this case they could very much turn over a new leaf as long as they aren't given up on almost immedietly. They need patience and understanding and if they get that then they would probably change for the better. Frenemies proved that they had the capacity for it.

The other option is if someone who is weaker and can't handle them releases them in secret in which case they will most likely just escape and we'd be back at square one.

Should they be released by a villain:
They will try to make them work for him/her in which case it will be a situation very similar to what Discord did and if their released to just cause chaos and weaken the heroes then its the same as option two for the reformation realease.

And if they escape on their own then its like the previous two.

Either way all of these options would provide great opportunities to try and reform them and maybe have them meet their own personal Fluttershy equivalents as they would most likely have a very hard time coming up with revenge plans given what they would be facing.
Background Pony #6071
@DarkObsidian
Re stone all of them. But seeing as this is a show about friendship, I guess try to reform Cozy one last time but have measures in place to watch her and stop her if she very likely fakes her reformation to get suspicion off of her. If she tries her usual stuff again, restone her.

The other two need to be put back into stone immediately. Even though I think Cozy is the worst of the three because of how unassuming she looks and how devoid of empathy she seems to be, the sheer raw power Tirek and Chrysalis possess and the maliciousness they have shown using it mean they’re too dangerous to let out. Tirek is literally a magic parasite who could leave the main cast devoid of any way to fight back if he catches them unaware and Chrysalis has show an almost obsessive and craven need to kill the main cast that seemingly blinds her to anything else.
gingerninja666
The End wasn't The End - Found a new home after the great exodus of 2012

Kaze ni Nare
Here's another opinion I have about the way Twilight thinks.

If Twilight had managed to capture Starlight at the end of The Cutie Map, I don't think Starlight would've been redeemed. Just like at the end of School Raze Twi would've asked Starlight why she did what she did, Starlight would've scoffed at her, and Twi would've sent her to jail. XD
AC97
My Little Pony - 1992 Edition

I think perhaps something worth pointing out is how Twilight's attitude with Sunset Shimmer went in EQG, transient it might have been.

Twilight Sparkle: They've got Spike!
Sunset Shimmer: That's close enough!
Spike: Twilight!
Twilight Sparkle: Don't hurt him!
Sunset Shimmer: Oh, I wouldn't dream of it. I'm not a monster, Twilight. [to Snips and Snails] Let him go. [to Twilight] You don't belong here. Give me the crown, and you can go back to Equestria tonight. Or keep it and never go home.


Even after that, seeing that Sunset only really went off the deep end after putting the Crown on…

Sunset Shimmer: No! [screaming] What is happening?!
Twilight Sparkle: Here and in Equestria, it is the only magic that can truly unite us all!
Twilight Sparkle: You will never rule in Equestria. Any power you may have had in this world is gone. Tonight, you've shown everyone who you really are. You've shown them what is in your heart.
Sunset Shimmer: [crying] I-I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. I didn't know there was another way.
Twilight Sparkle: The magic of friendship doesn't just exist in Equestria. It's everywhere. You can seek it out, or you can forever be alone. The choice is yours.


Twilight was acting completely cold to Sunset until she saw she was crying in remorse. She seemed like she would not have given her an olive branch at all if she didn't get that out of her.

@Spinny

No she isn't a psychopath. They don't feel emotions the way Starlight does, because they don't have the entire emotional range, they have shallow emotions, because their brains are physically incapable of such a thing. She'd also be able to more easily read others instead of fumbling around more than once, being more naturally charismatic.

How many of her actions are fueled by just remorseless amusement at the expense of others, out of boredom caused by being unable to empathize with others and shallow emotions?

If it is "cured," then it is not psychopathy, by definition.
gingerninja666
The End wasn't The End - Found a new home after the great exodus of 2012

Kaze ni Nare
@Latecomer

It just seems to me that Twi has only ever redeemed people if she sees evidence of remorse or because she's pressured into it. It'd be an interesting type of moralism if it was intentional. Like, the Trixie example. All her antagonism vanished the second Trixie looked sad about something. She's a bleeding heart if she sees something, but oddly callous if she doesn't.

With Discord and Starlight, Twi was put in a situation where she HAD to try redeeming them.
Background Pony #7CFD
@gingerninja666
Another reason why she can come off as a hypocrit in this regard. Still, with all those past experiences you'd thing she'd try a little more…
Brass Beau

Howdy from Shimmer Pope
Let's see if we can review the facts about Cozy for a second.

What is Cozy Glow? Cozy Glow is a pegasus filly of roughly the same age as the Cutie Mark Crusaders.

What did Cozy Glow do? Cozy Glow nearly wiped magic from existence.

Why did Cozy Glow nearly wipe magic from existence? Cozy Glow wanted to remove magic from the world to trap the mane six in Tartarus.

Why did Cozy Glow want the mane six in Tartarus? Cozy Glow wanted them trapped in an inescapable prison so she could take command of the school of friendship.

Why did Cozy Glow want command of the school? Cozy Glow wanted to have the most friends in the world.

Why did Cozy Glow want friends? Cozy Glow wanted power.

How does having the most friends give Cozy Glow power? Friendship is the most powerful force in Equestria. Therefore, more friends equals more power.

How did Cozy Glow try to wipe magic from existence? She used six magical artifacts to attract all of the magic in Equestria then tried to send it into the void.

How was Cozy Glow's plan foiled?
The friendship student six and assistance from the Tree of Harmony allowed the artifacts to be removed, returning magic to Equestria and its residents.

What was Cozy Glow's reaction to this change? Anger, mockery and swearing vengeance.

Did Cozy Glow show remorse? No.

Did Princess Twilight Sparkle try to emotionally connect to Cozy Glow? Yes. Twice, in fact.

When did Princess Twilight Sparkle try to emotionally connect to Cozy Glow? After returning from Tartarus.

How did Princess Twilight Sparkle try to emotionally connect to Cozy Glow? She sought out Cozy Glow's motivations. Then she apologized for Cozy Glow not understanding that friendship is more than power.

Was Cozy Glow receptive to this attempt? No.

What circumstances are similar to Cozy Glow's situation at the time of her defeat? Both Starlight Glimmer (the first time) and Queen Chrysalis refused to accept they were wrong and tried to escape.

What is a sociopath?
so·ci·o·path /ˈsōsēōˌpaTH/
noun
a person with a personality disorder manifesting itself in extreme antisocial attitudes and behavior and a lack of conscience.

Is Cozy Glow a sociopath? While Cozy Glow has demonstrated a lack of concern for how her actions effect others, it could be argued that her understanding of social behavior and ability to emulate it disqualifies her as a sociopath.

So, let's round this out with three loaded questions.

Would Cozy Glow be reformed? Not within the final season of the show.

Could Cozy Glow be reformed? If we are to assume Cozy Glow has a similar mentality and willingness to change like other reformed villains then yes.

Should Cozy Glow be reformed? That's not really something that can be decided without diving into a few thousand years worth of philosophy and ethics.

As things stand, Cozy Glow's age seems to be a key factor in the question of her downfall. Does her age disqualify her from punishment? Is her youth an excuse for her behavior? Is the law of Equestria absolute or would special consideration grant her amnesty? Is being stoned equivalent to a death sentence? Is there room for interpretation of what could happen next? Will the season 10 comic address these issues? Will fans accept the season 10 comics as canon?

AC97
My Little Pony - 1992 Edition

@Brass Beau

I'd argue the first attempt to reach her was the passive "I actually care about you" phase of their relationship, before anyone realized she had ulterior motives.

But anyway, perhaps the show would've been better off with a bit higher rating to get her across more "properly."

As far as the "Season 10" comics go… ehhhhhh I'm not really a big fan of the worldbuilding they've had thus far, with how Zebras, Kelpies, and Abadas have cutie marks (there's so many races including Saddle Arabians without them), how it seems to have forgotten Centaurs (and other beings) can learn magic (Tirek's FIENDship issue got a direct reference by Discord in the show) by saying 'unicorns are the only creatures rumored to be able to learn magic,' and I doubt it'll be graceful with that whole Tree of Harmony thing, aside from characters I find mostly forgettable at best. Also Zecora may or may not have used magic here in the show, and potions being implied to be something ponies came up with in the comics, no other races having really tried to emulate or innovate on such a thing in the past as far as we know

(Yes, I know "unreliable narrator" may be a thing, but it's also silly they'd be playing Ogres & Oubliettes [D&D stand-in] in such a far off land where ponies are a myth, unless you're going with that being an ancient game as well, which I'm not fond of as an explanation)

Also comics are loose canon as a whole, on multiple levels, so it'd be really easy to ignore anything lackluster they do with the three villains, if anything.
Brass Beau

Howdy from Shimmer Pope
@Latecomer
Noted. I wanted to have everything in place because I didn't feel like watching hours of the show again. I don't have the time to research this topic again and again.

@DarkObsidian
If they were to be freed, I like it to go something like this:
Cozy Glow is freed by Flurry Heart. Cozy Glow tries to manipulate Flurry Heart bit the reality of the situation is that Flurry Heart is only going along with Cozy Glow's plan because it's fun. The second Cozy Glow tries to do something irredeemable Flurry Heart steps up, says 'no' and walks away. Much like the Fluttershy and Discord situation, this causes Cozy Glow to turn over a new leaf. Cozy Glow is still manipulative as hell, but she uses that power to help people instead.
Thorax and Pharynx have a piece of magic cancelling rock bound to Chrysalis. She comes back to the hive and nobody wants her there. Pharynx empathizes with Chrysalis predicament and Thorax really wants everyone to get along. Seeing Thorax risk the throne for the sake of Chrysalis well-being and Pharynx, who is still a bit of an outcast, try to form a genuine bond with her causes her to change for the better.
Tirek escapes into the Everfree Forest and befriends a creature with no magic. While he considers the creature a nuisance, something being so loyal and needing so much protection gives him a change of heart. Maybe it's a creature native to his homeland and we get a Lone Wolf and Cub situation.
If they're gonna be redeemed, it shouldn't be the mane six (seven or eight) doing it. The villainous trio hates them. Better if someone or something else does it.
Spinny
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Resident Spin Fetishist
@AC97

out of boredom caused by being unable to empathize with others and shallow emotions?


That kinda sounds like Starlight in Every Little Thing She Does. (shrug)

Even after reforming, Starlight needed to learn that other people cannot simply be used or manipulated for her own benefit. This went as far as Road to Friendship, where she sold Trixie's wagon without bothering to consider her feelings, and even when Trixie made her feelings known afterward, Starlight's first instinct was to snap at her.

I'm just saying, I'm not about to accept that Starlight was able to overcome these sorts of empathy-devoid tendencies while Cozy, whose mind hadn't fully developed yet, was completely beyond saving and pure evil through and through.
AC97
My Little Pony - 1992 Edition

@Spinny

That kinda sounds like Starlight in Every Little Thing She Does. (shrug)


Not really, no.

Starlight Glimmer: Everypony'll probably thank me for getting it all done so quickly. And Twilight will be thrilled I've completed so many lessons. Everypony wins!


Starlight Glimmer: Ugh, fine! I've been avoiding the friendship lessons on purpose.
Twilight Sparkle: Why?
Starlight Glimmer: I can cast complex spells, but baking a cake with Pinkie Pie freaks me out! And yes, I know how ridiculous that sounds. That's why I didn't say anything. I thought if I just kept wowing you with my magical abilities, you might just… not… notice?
Twilight Sparkle: Baking a cake freaks you out?
Starlight Glimmer: Yes! Baking a cake, sewing – all of it! What if I was bad at it? I didn't want to be a disappointment to anypony, and I ended up being a disappointment to everypony.

Starlight Glimmer: I really messed up. I cast the spell because I was nervous about working with you on the friendship lessons.


She did it out of social anxiety, not amusement/boredom. She looks for validation/guidance from Twilight at many points.

where she sold Trixie's wagon without bothering to consider her feelings, and even when Trixie made her feelings known afterward, Starlight's first instinct was to snap at her.


Hmm…

Starlight Glimmer: I traded the old, worn-out wagon that was too small for us, for this nice spacious one that we can both enjoy.


Starlight had not understood that the wagon had sentimental value to Trixie, because she had shown her/communicated none of those signs in front of her, and she didn't explain anything regarding Hoo'Far wanting it. In her eyes, it was a "win-win," but she miscalculated, showing yet again a questionable ability to read others, which a psychopath should by all rights do easily.

Trixie: [stammering] Who said you could do that?!
Starlight Glimmer: Nopony. I just did it. [sighs] Now we both have plenty of room, and you didn't even have to give anything away.
Trixie: Au contraire. I did give something away! I gave away my wagon… and my best friend!
[clatter]
Starlight Glimmer: Oh! I'm sorry! I didn't realize you were better friends with that beat-up old wagon than you are with me!
Trixie: Well, it's easy when the wagon is a better friend! It would've never traded you away!
Starlight Glimmer: That's ridiculous.
Trixie: Oh, it is ridiculous. In fact, this whole tour is ridiculous! I don't even know why I invited you in the first place!


Even though Starlight was more in the wrong, Trixie also wasn't doing herself any favors by not denying Starlight's comment that the wagon was a better friend than her in her eyes, because that was only going to piss her off more. They mutually escalated the argument. Starlight snapped out of a perception of being rejected by Trixie (remember Starlight's entire motivation for becoming a villain? abandonment issues, which psychopaths don't have), Trixie snapped for obvious reasons. A psychopath would not have gone back for Trixie. They would've left her to rot when she served no further purpose, because no one has sentimental value to them.
asdtroi

@Brass Beau
Yes, that is a summary indeed. Not sure what point you were tying to make with it, but it was decently made. Although there are a few things that I disagree with.

How did Princess Twilight Sparkle try to emotionally connect to Cozy Glow? She sought out Cozy Glow's motivations. Then she apologized for Cozy Glow not understanding that friendship is more than power.

Asking why only once and essentially saying "sorry that your wrong" is in no way trying to emotionally connect with someone. Trying to emotionally connectinc with someone is when Starlight tried bringing up her own past to try and get through to Chrysalis, when Twilight tried to reconnect with Moondancer and when she repeatadly try and convince Starlight that what she was doing was wrong. Did she ask why she wanted power? Did she try to explain why Cozy's views on friendship were wrong? Emotional connections require more then a simple question. Twilight did the bare minimum to try and get through to her.

Would Cozy Glow be reformed? Not within the final season of the show.

That was what the writers decided on, however it could still have effectively been done in season 9.


@Brass Beau
I do like these scenarios. Flurry theories are in an interesting position as we don't know how she'll turn out. She may end up being the perfect candidate for reforming Cozy or the worst.

I can see the Chrysalis one working given the state she got into when she was alone. Clearily she hates lonelyness.

As for Thorax, I don't think he really needs to be reformed, but I do think that this scenario could actually work for Tirek. He did seem to treat Cozy surprisingly well at times, letting her sit on his shoulder, explaining things to her and holding her back from crashing into the magic barrier guarding the bell.

If they're gonna be redeemed, it shouldn't be the mane six (seven or eight) doing it. The villainous trio hates them. Better if someone or something else does it.

I dunno, I do think it could still work if they do it under the right circomstances, although I definitely wouldn't put Chrysalis with Starlight.

I'm actually thinking that if one of the trio reformes first, they can be a big help in reforming the others.
Brass Beau

Howdy from Shimmer Pope
@asdtroi
Twilight asked why Cozy did it, trying to establish an understanding and letting Cozy know she would be heard. She then apologized for Cozy not learning what friendship was, letting Cozy know that she would not be blamed for the actions she took and that Twilight wanted to try again with her. Maybe, maybe if the student six didn't try to cheer up Twilight for trying to accept the blame, Cozy maybe would have turned over a new leaf. Tough call.

Thorax? *rereads post* Oh! Whoops. That should have read 'Tirek' not 'Thorax'. Edited it to clarify.
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@Background Pony #6071
As someone who thought the first movie was cliched and Rainbow Rocks was surprisingly good, I agree. I'll also give you that that having both be separate universes with little to connect was a wise move. Another problem that the whole EQG thing brought up overtime were the comparisons between Sunset and Starlight and whoever's better, mostly in terms of redemption. Maybe it's a me thing, but comparing both over superficial things just does disservice to their fans when both have good and bad things going for them without having to say "This is why (Starlight/Sunset) is better than (Sunset/Starlight) because of so and so reasons".
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