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My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #81
Comic issue 81 cover RI.jpg
Issue №: 81
Published: August 28, 2019
Writer: Thom Zahler
Artist: Nicoletta Baldari
Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Editor: Megan Brown
See also
Issue guide
Friendship is Magic #80
Friendship is Magic #82

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #81, titled Pretty Fly in trade paperback, is the eighty-first issue of IDW Publishing's Friendship is Magic comic series. In the issue, Scootaloo and Rumble learn about the only Earth pony to become a member of the Wonderbolts.


During "Foals and Friends Weekend" at the Wonderbolt Academy, Rumble gets the chance to fly with the Wonderbolts in their air parade the next day, and his old brother Thunderlane, Rainbow Dash, and Scootaloo are present to show their support. Rumble is excited to demonstrate his flying skill for the Wonderbolts, but Rainbow and Thunderlane warn him not to show off for fear of getting hurt.

Later, during practice for the parade, a Wonderbolt named Red Bank goes too fast and causes Rumble to lose control and crash. He ends up with a sprained wing and confined to a hospital bed, preventing him from flying with the Wonderbolts in the parade. As Rainbow and Thunderlane leave to go back to parade practice, Scootaloo stays with Rumble to keep him company.

Despite the both of them being grounded, Scootaloo suggests they leave Rumble's hospital room and explore the Academy. In the Wonderbolts museum, Scootaloo and Rumble find monuments to prominent Wonderbolt leaders and members. One of these monuments is dedicated to an Earth pony named Wind Sock, the only Earth pony ever to become a Wonderbolt. A high-ranking general of the Wonderbolts appears behind Scootaloo and Rumble to tell Wind Sock's story.

Long ago, Wind Sock was a janitor at the Wonderbolt headquarters, and the other Wonderbolts made fun of him for being an Earth pony in a Pegasus-only organization. During his time at Wonderbolt HQ, Wind Sock secretly developed a pair of artificial wings that would allow him to fly. One day, a Wonderbolt named Dauntless got trapped with a broken wing inside Breezewood Canyon, where harsh winds made it impossible for the other Wonderbolts to rescue him.

Using parts from the stretcher intended to lift Dauntless out of the canyon, Wind Sock finished building his artificial wings, and their stability compared to Pegasus wings allowed him to glide into the canyon and rescue Dauntless. The Wonderbolts' general was so impressed by Wind Sock's ingenuity that he made Wind Sock an official Wonderbolt cadet. Back in present day, the Wonderbolt general telling Wind Sock's story to Scootaloo and Rumble is revealed to be Dauntless himself.

The next day, during the Foals and Friends Air Parade, the Wonderbolts arrive to begin their show. Rumble, having been inspired by Wind Sock's determination, flies alongside the Wonderbolts using a pair of artificial wings.


Rumble: Once the Academy commandants see my flying, I'm sure they'll offer me a spot here—well, on the spot!
Scootaloo: [to Rumble] You'll be great, I'm sure! I'll be rooting for you! From the ground.
Thunderlane: Red Bank! You're going too fast!
Red Bank: Faster is better!
Rumble: Looks like we're both grounded, huh? Oh, no! I'm sorry, Scootaloo. I didn't mean—
Scootaloo: Nah, it's okay. I know what you meant.
Whiplash: Why did the general let this wingless wonder work here?
Fast Clip: Hey, him sweeping up is one less thing we need to do.
Wonderbolt: What is that?
Wind Sock: It's wings for the wingless. It's a glider.
Wonderbolt General: That was some flying, cadet.
Wind Sock: I'm not a cadet, sir. I'm just the groundskeeper.
Wonderbolt General: Not anymore—cadet. After all that, you're going to be a Wonderbolt.
Rumble: Did you know him, sir? Personally, I mean.
General Dauntless: I did. If not for him, I'd still be at the bottom of that canyon.
Red Bank's Mother: Had to show off, didn't you? And your antics got Rumble hurt—and you grounded.
Red Bank: Sorry, Mom.
Rumble: Thank you, general.
General Dauntless: Keep 'em flying, son—no force in Equestria can stop you!