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Shining Armor is a one of the secondary characters in My Little Pony Friendship is Magic. He is a male unicorn pony and Twilight Sparkle's older brother.
He is also the captain of the Canterlot Royal Guard, serving under Princess Celestia and Luna, and bears the title of Prince as a result of his marriage to Princess Cadance. He first appears in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1, the first part of the two-part finale of the second season of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic, alongside Princess Cadance. A blurb on one of the toy sets featuring Shining Armor says that he and Princess Cadance "lead the Crystal Empire together!"
He is the father of Flurry Heart.
Throughout his appearances, Shining Armor is portrayed as kind, caring, and protective. He has a very close relationship with his little sister Twilight Sparkle, and he is warm and loving toward his fiancée (and later wife) Princess Cadance. True to being the captain of the royal guard, he is also stern at times, as seen in Games Ponies Play and Twilight's Kingdom - Part 2. Despite his professionalism, Shining Armor has had moments of immaturity, like bawling his eyes out in Slice of Life and childishly coddling his previous childhood possessions in The One Where Pinkie Pie Knows.
In the IDW comics' Neigh Anything story arc, Shining Armor is shown to have been socially awkward, shy, and nerdy in his academy years.
Depiction in the series
Shining Armor first appears in a flashback, as Twilight describes her relationship with her brother to her friends. She calls him her "B.B.B.F.F." (Big Brother Best Friend Forever), and describes him as very caring toward her, him being the only one she would be friends with at the time. They were close throughout her childhood and he was present to see her off on the day she left Canterlot for Ponyville, but they started losing touch with each other after that. Twilight fears that now he is marrying "Princess Mi Amore Cadenza", unaware that this pony is Cadance, and starting a family, they'll never see each other again.
Shining Armor later tells Twilight he was unable to tell her of his engagement in person due to a threat on the safety of Canterlot; he adds that Princess Mi Amore Cadenza is Twilight's former foalsitter, Cadance. At the request of Princess Celestia, Shining Armor used his magic to create a protective barrier around Canterlot and keep it there constantly. However, unknown to everyone, Queen Chrysalis was already in Canterlot and had taken the place of Princess Cadance.
Before the wedding, Twilight tries to tell Shining Armor, but the false Cadance interrupts before they have a chance to talk and takes him into another room. Twilight, peeking through the door, sees Chrysalis, disguised as Cadance casting her spell on Shining Armor, concludes that she's "downright evil," and then runs off. Twilight at last confronts Cadance during the wedding rehearsal, causing "Cadance" to run off in tears. Shining Armor is so upset with Twilight for her actions, after justifying Cadance's behavior, he tells Twilight she is no longer his Best Mare and suggests that she should not bother coming to the wedding at all.
By the time the wedding begins, Shining Armor is completely under the power of Queen Chrysalis. He remains in a trance-like state until Twilight finally reunites him with the real Cadance. Her magic breaks the spell, but by now an army of Changelings has broken through his shield and is invading Canterlot. Shining Armor tries to perform a spell to repel the changelings, but he doesn't have the power. Cadance tells Shining Armor that her love will give him strength, and the two's magic spreads outward and repels all the changelings and their queen out of Canterlot and off into the horizon.
The wedding is redone with the real Cadance involved in the planning, and Shining Armor, having reconciled with Twilight off screen, makes her his Best Mare again. He jokes with her that Cadance only agreed to marry him after he told her she'd be gaining Twilight as her sister. At the wedding, Celestia declares that the power of Cadance and Shining Armor's love is undeniable, and pronounces them "mare and colt". The couple looks onto the castle courtyard and wave to the cheering crowds, then kiss.
After a wedding reception montage, Cadance and Shining Armor prepare to leave in their chariot. Before they do, Shining Armor thanks Twilight for all her help. The happy couple then rides off into the night.
On a side note, due to Shining Armor marrying Princess Cadance, he is considered royalty similar to Prince Blueblood.
Shining Armor's first appears next in The Crystal Empire - Part 1. When Princess Celestia receives word of the Crystal Empire's return, she instructs a guard to inform him as well as his wife, Princess Cadance. Upon their arriving in the Arctic North of Equestria, he greets the Mane Six at the train station before together they run desperately to the Crystal Empire in an attempt to escape from the shadowed form of King Sombra. As the others enter through the forcefield protecting the empire, Shining Armor stays back to buy more time only for his horn to be encrusted with black crystals, cutting off his magic. Upon arriving at the castle he reunites with Cadance and stays by her side throughout the remainder of the episode, comforting her in her weakened state.
He is shown once again when the main six return from the library to tell him their plan about the Crystal Fair. After Twilight discovers that the crystal heart was a legitimate relic, she informs him and Cadance about the problem. Cadance's weak and sleep-deprived condition causes her to falter and "pass out", temporarily lowering the forcefield, only to be slightly recovered as Shining Armor persuades her to keep going.
After Twilight finds the real crystal heart and its trapped by King Sombra, she instructs Spike to bring it to Cadance. Spike quickly falls from the tower, however, and Shining Armor throws his wife in the air, right toward the heart, since she did not have the strength to launch herself on her own. His horn was restored when Sombra and all his dark crystals were destroyed by the power of the Crystal Heart. After having saved the Crystal Empire, Shining Armor jokes to Twilight that she has to stop saving him, as it has become rather embarrassing.
Shining Armor's next appearance is in Games Ponies Play, where he's seen training a group of Crystal Ponies for the Equestria Games. He briefly meets Ms. Peachbottom, whom everyone had mistaken for the Equestria Games inspector, and is shocked when she admits she is just a tourist, not to mention embarrassed when she shamelessly flirts with him. He is later present when the real inspector, Ms. Harshwhinny, announces that the Crystal Empire will be hosting the next Equestria Games.
Shining Armor also makes an appearance is in Magical Mystery Cure. He is shown crying due to Twilight's new found princesshood. However, he insists that they aren't tears, but "liquid pride."
In Pinkie Pride, Shining Armor makes a portrait cameo on Pinkie Pie's wall during his wedding with Cadance. Shining is also set to appear in the Equestria Games episode.
In Slice of Life, Shining Armor appears at Cranky Doodle Donkey and Matilda's wedding, getting overemotional at their impending nuptials.
In The One Where Pinkie Pie Knows, Shining Armor and Cadance announce that they are having a baby, and they reveal this to Twilight through a scavenger hunt.
In The Crystalling - Part 1 and Part 2, after Cadance gives birth to a foal, Shining Armor becomes ill-rested and stressed from his sudden role as a father. However, Twilight and her friends help him through his dilemma. He and Cadance later give the baby the name Flurry Heart.
In The Times They Are A Changeling, Shining Armor leads the royal guards on a search for a changeling in the Empire, harboring deep resentment toward changelings after the events of the royal wedding. When Spike approaches him and the others on the changeling Thorax's behalf, Shining Armor moves past his resentment and welcomes him to the Empire.
In To Where and Back Again - Part 1, Shining Armor is stated to have been captured by the changelings along with Cadance and Flurry Heart. At the end of Part 2, he is rescued along with the other captives, and he joins in celebrating the Sunset Festival in Our Town.
In Celestial Advice, Shining Armor appears at Starlight Glimmer, Trixie, Thorax, and Discord's medal-awarding ceremony. In A Flurry of Emotions, he and Cadance ask Twilight to babysit Flurry Heart while they attend an art show hosted by Shining Armor's old royal guard friend Spearhead.
In Once Upon a Zeppelin, he is invited on a zeppelin cruise with his family. He enjoys it for the most part, although he occasionally suffers from airsickness.
Best Gift Ever
In the hour-long special My Little Pony Best Gift Ever, Shining Armor visits Twilight for Hearth's Warming alongside Cadance and Flurry Heart, and he quickly realizes that Twilight is over-stressed by holiday plans. When Flurry Heart adds some some extra ingredients to a magic pudding recipe, Shining Armor and Cadance help fight against it. After the pudding is dealt with, Shining Armor, Cadance and Flurry Heart join Twilight and her friends in celebrating Hearth's Warming.
In The Beginning of the End - Part 1, Shining Armor is captured along with Cadance and Flurry Heart when King Sombra attacks the Crystal Empire, eventually being freed when the Mane Six defeat Sombra with the Elements of Harmony.
In Sparkle's Seven, Shining Armor challenges Twilight to a final round of their childhood "supreme sibling" contest, by having her test the defenses for Canterlot castle that he came up with, and try to recover the "supreme sibling" crown from the throne room. Despite her best efforts, Twilight fails to outthink Shining Armor, but to the surprise of both, Spike (with some help from Princess Luna) claims the crown for himself. Impressed, both Shining Armor and Twilight agree that Spike is the true "supreme sibling". In The Point of No Return, he appears as a colt in Twilight's macaroni family portrait.
In The Ending of the End - Part 1, Shining Armor, along with Cadance, is informed by Twilight that Chrysalis, Tirek, and Cozy Glow are on the loose and instructed to serve as Equestria's final line of defense if the Mane Six fail to stop them. In Part 2, he and Cadance offer to assist the Mane Six in the final battle, but Twilight tells them to protect Flurry Heart as "Equestria's last hope".
Episodes and Appearances
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
- The Crystalling - Part 1
- The Crystalling - Part 2
- The Times They Are A Changeling
- To Where and Back Again - Part 1 (mentioned)
- To Where and Back Again - Part 2 (no lines)
- The Maud Couple (cameo in photo)
- The Beginning of the End - Part 1
- Sparkle's Seven
- The Point of No Return (cameo in photo)
- The Ending of the End - Part 1 (no lines)
- The Ending of the End - Part 2 (no lines)
- The Last Problem (no lines)
Friendship is Magic
- Neigh Anything
- Reflections (cameo)
- Siege of the Crystal Empire
- Rainbow Dash and the Very Bad Day (cameo)
- Chaos Theory (cameo)
- Convocation of the Creatures! (mentioned)
- Friends Forever Issue 4
- Friends Forever Issue 9 (cameo)
- Friends Forever Issue 26
- Friends Forever Issue 30
- Season 8 is the only season following his debut where Shining Armor does not appear in any episode.
- Sparkle's Seven is the only episode in which Shining Armor appears without Princess Cadance.