The Wonderbolts in The Ticket Master; from left to right: Surprise, Soarin, and Blaze
Yellow lightning bolt
The Wonderbolts are a squad of Pegasus ponies who perform aerial acrobatics and demonstrations. They leave long trails of thunderclouds when flying, much like how Rainbow Dash leaves a rainbow streak. Their name is a portmanteau of the words "wonder" and "thunderbolt". Spitfire is the team's leader. Rainbow Dash becomes a member of the group in the season six episode Newbie Dash.
In mid-December 2011, Jayson Thiessen was asked if the Wonderbolts were inspired by the "blue angles[sic]" and answered "yeah I think they were." In the book The Art of Equestria, it is mentioned that the Wonderbolts were initially conceived as "the Blue Thunders".
The Wonderbolts appear to be an amalgam of the United States Navy flight demonstration team, known as the Blue Angels, as well as their United States Air Force counterparts, the Thunderbirds. Their resemblance to the Blue Angels can be seen in their flight suits, which feature a shade of gold and aquamarine along with a 'winged bolt' logo, not unlike the paint scheme and 'flying shield' icon of the naval aerobatics team. To add to this, the background of their name is vaguely similar to that of the Thunderbirds.
Many of the Wonderbolts' past uniforms shown in the episode Testing Testing 1, 2, 3 resemble those of the real-life United States Air Force and Royal Air Force, and General Firefly's uniform resembles that of an officer of the American Civil War.
Depiction in the series
The Wonderbolts are first mentioned by Rainbow Dash in Friendship is Magic, part 1 as her idolized flight acrobatics group. In the following episode, Nightmare Moon takes the form of the Shadowbolts (including "Nightingale" and two of "Descent") to lure Rainbow Dash into joining them and abandoning her friends during their quest to get the Elements of Harmony. While Dash appreciates the offer, she declines and stays loyal to her friends. Having failed to accomplish their intentions, the Shadowbolts fade into a purple mist.
The Wonderbolts attend the Best Young Flyer Competition in Cloudsdale as celebrity judges in the episode Sonic Rainboom. The winner of the competition would spend an entire day with the Wonderbolts. During the final performance, Rarity's magically-created wings burn up when she flies too close to the sun at the end of her act, causing her to plummet down toward the ground. Soarin, Spitfire, and Misty Fly take immediate action and dart for the plummeting Rarity to save her, but they are knocked unconscious by her flailing hooves. When all hope seems lost, Rainbow Dash manages to save them before they hit the ground. In the process, her extreme speed triggers a spectacular sonic rainboom that dazzles the stadium audience. When Rainbow Dash receives gratitude from Spitfire for saving each of their lives, she becomes so overwhelmed with excitement she can't voice a proper reply. Nonetheless, she gains the opportunity of spending the rest of the day with her heroes.
A Wonderbolts Derby takes place in Sweet and Elite. Five Wonderbolts take part in the race held over a cloud circuit in Canterlot. Two of the contestants resemble Spitfire and Soarin, and two are named Fleetfoot and Rapidfire, though only Fleetfoot is identified. The racers are shown in close-up three times; their composition changes in the middle, only to revert to the starting lineup by the end.
Surprise and two other Wonderbolts attempt stop a grown Spike from rampaging through Ponyville in Secret of My Excess, but they are largely unsuccessful. They only manage to partly shear off the spikes on his head before being caught and trapped in a water tank. This scene pays homage to a climactic scene in the 1933 monster adventure film King Kong in which a squadron of fighter pilots perform an airborne assault against the massive gorilla as he takes his last stand on the Empire State building.
Spitfire is established as the Wonderbolts' captain in Hurricane Fluttershy. She oversees a tornado operation on behalf of Cloudsdale.
Soarin is a guest at the royal wedding in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2 and dances with Rainbow Dash.
Wonderbolts Academy introduces the Academy: a training center for potential new members. Spitfire serves as a drill sergeant for the newest cadets. Also shown are guards and training staff, who assist Spitfire in handling the cadets. Rainbow Dash is accepted into Wonderbolt Academy along with several other Ponyville residents and the cocky Lightning Dust, though Dust is sent off after she puts other ponies in danger out of recklessness.
A Wonderbolts team comprised of Spitfire, Soarin, and Fleetfoot appear in Rainbow Falls, representing Cloudsdale at the tryouts for the upcoming Equestria Games. When Soarin injures his wing during practice, Spitfire and Fleetfoot offer Rainbow Dash to fill in for him, citing her upbringing in Cloudsdale as a qualification. Ultimately, Rainbow Dash remains with the Ponyville team and gets Soarin back on his old team. At the end of the episode, Soarin helps his team qualify for the Equestria Games.
In Testing Testing 1, 2, 3, Rainbow Dash studies for a history exam on the Wonderbolts to qualify as a member of the newly established Wonderbolts Reserves.
The Cloudsdale team of Wonderbolts appear in the season four episode Equestria Games, and they appear with other Wonderbolt Academy cadets in the season four finale to try and stop Tirek, but they lose their magic as a result. They later get their magic back and are seen during the song Let the Rainbow Remind You.
In Party Pooped, according to Pinkie Pie, the Wonderbolts save the out of control cherry cart from falling into a ravine in the desert, and they fly the cart to Manehattan. Her flashback shows three Wonderbolt Academy cadets saving the cart, and a photograph shows a proper Wonderbolt and one of the three cadets leaving the cart in Manehattan. Two other proper Wonderbolts appear at the welcoming party later in the episode, hosting their own booth. In Rarity Investigates!, Rarity and Rainbow Dash attend a show featuring the Wonderbolts. In an alternate timeline in The Cutie Re-Mark - Part 1, the Wonderbolts fight alongside Rainbow Dash in the war against King Sombra and his Crystal Pony warriors.
In No Second Prances, Rainbow Dash mentions the Wonderbolts to Starlight Glimmer, but Starlight admits she has never heard of them. In Newbie Dash, Rainbow Dash becomes a full-fledged member of the Wonderbolts, and she performs with them in Ponyville as part of their Equestrian tour.
In Parental Glideance, the Wonderbolts appear giving an aerial showcase and participating in several public appearances including an autograph signing and photo shoot for foals.
In Marks and Recreation, several Wonderbolts members appear practicing for their Ponyville Extravaganza show.
In Secrets and Pies, several Wonderbolts are shown practicing, and Pinkie Pie interrogates some of them over Rainbow Dash throwing out one of her pies.
In Grannies Gone Wild, several Wonderbolt members tell Rainbow about the Wild Blue Yonder rollercoaster at Las Pegasus.
In Yakity-Sax, the Wonderbolts perform a flight show at the Wonderbolts Derby, but Pinkie's poor music on her yovidaphone disrupts their concentration.
Best Gift Ever shorts
In Triple Pony Dare Ya, Soarin and High Winds are shown flying with Rainbow Dash in her classroom.
In The Beginning of the End - Part 2, the Wonderbolts are shown among King Sombra's brainwashed minions. In Uprooted, Silverstream has a dream about Rainbow Dash making her the first non-Pegasus Wonderbolt. In Sparkle's Seven, Rainbow mentions that she had the Wonderbolts perform a fly-by of Canterlot castle. Rainbow also mentions them in Common Ground.
In The Last Crusade, Rainbow Dash brings the Cutie Mark Crusaders tickets for their show, and the group are later seen flying a salute at the CMC Appreciation Day. In The Summer Sun Setback, several Wonderbolts are seen helping Rainbow Dash try to contain the out-of-control weather. Spitfire and the Wonderbolts are briefly mentioned in Growing Up is Hard to Do, with Rainbow Dash saying that she can't be the CMCs' chaperone because she has to help corral some storm clouds. In The Ending of the End - Part 2, the Wonderbolts appear as part of the army that appears to battle Chrysalis, Tirek, and Cozy Glow. In The Last Problem, an older Rainbow Dash briefly flies with a new generation of Wonderbolts during The Magic of Friendship Grows.
The early history and establishment of the Wonderbolts is explored in some detail in Testing Testing 1, 2, 3.
Following Princess Luna's banishment to the moon, the E.U.P. (Earth, Unicorn, Pegasus) Guard was formed to protect Princess Celestia and keep the peace. At the celebration of the first celestial year of peace, an elite team of aerial performers was chosen to help commemorate the occasion. According to Twilight Sparkle, the performance was so charged with energy, magical lightning showered the crowd below. The ponies were so filled with amazement and wonder that General Firefly, the general of the aerial squadron at the time, named them the "Wonderbolts".
Other prominent players in the Wonderbolts' history mentioned in the episode include Colonel Purple Dart, the Wonderbolts' leader in the fourth Celestial era; Commander Easyglider, whose flight choreography is still in use by the Wonderbolts in recent times; Admiral Fairweather, who founded the Wonderbolt Academy; Admiral Fairy Flight of the seventh Wonderbolts squadron; General Flash, the tenth leader of the Wonderbolts; and Flair d'Mare, a designer who revolutionized and streamlined the Wonderbolts' uniforms.
One of the Wonderbolts' signature flight patterns is called the Icaranian Sun Salutation, which is Princess Celestia's favorite. The Wonderbolts' first slogan, stated in Newbie Dash to have been coined by General Flash, is "Altius volantis—Soaring higher!" In the episode, Rainbow Dash says that "there were twenty ponies in the original E.U.P. Guard that became the Wonderbolts!"
The Wonderbolts are almost always seen in their uniforms which conceal their cutie marks. Their suits are azure blue with golden yellow lightning patterns and sport a uniform icon on their flanks over where the ponies' cutie marks are; the icon varies depending on the gender of the member. For males, the mark is a winged lightning bolt, while for females it is a long streak of lightning. An additional accessory are flight goggles which consists of a black frame with sky blue lenses and a golden yellow rubber headstrap.
In Rainbow Dash's fantasy in The Ticket Master, when she imagines herself as a Wonderbolt, her own cutie mark appears on the suit in place of the emblem. When she fantasizes herself as a Wonderbolt again in The Best Night Ever, on the other hand, she sports the long bolt emblem usually found on any other female members' flanks. In reality, the Wonderbolts' uniforms are notably brighter than in Rainbow Dash's fantasies.
In A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2, Soarin is shown in a military shirt with collar badges, epaulettes, and black tie. His cutie mark is also shown and appears to be the male Wonderbolts flight suit symbol.
In Wonderbolts Academy, Spitfire wears a dark blue uniform with a shirt and tie underneath, with epaulettes, two bars (signifying "captain" under US Air Force ranks), and medals. Unlike Soarin, her epaulette is a roundel and a single wing. Also unlike Soarin, her visible cutie mark differs from any flight suit logo.
Cadets at the Academy wear a uniform that leaves the legs and faces bare, with a larger, pale yellow lightning bolt on the front. Included with the uniform are flight goggles which consist of a golden yellow frame with clear blue lenses and a black rubber headstrap. The guards and training staff wear dark blue jackets with a lightning bolt epaulette, a cap with the Wonderbolts' insignia, and mirrored shades.
Prior to the streamlining of the Wonderbolts' uniforms by Flair d'Mare, the uniforms were somewhat bulkier, usually incorporating jackets and service or flight caps. Rarity describes the original Wonderbolts uniform as being "unattractive" and "itchy" and criticizes General Flash's use of bell-bottoms.
Depiction in My Little Pony The Movie
Depiction in My Little Pony: A New Generation
- See also: List of Wonderbolts
In chapter five of the My Little Pony Annual 2017, the Wonderbolts race to the Crystal Empire to fight the changelings. In My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic Issue #81, it is revealed that there was once an earth pony Wonderbolt named Wind Sock, who used a glider to fly. In Issue #94, Rainbow Dash mentions that she and the Wonderbolts need to practice for their performance in the seceond Festival of the Two Sisters.
In the first issue of My Little Pony/Transformers II, the Wonderbolts accidentally fly through a space bridge portal and find themselves on the Transformers' homeworld of Cybertron. In the second issue, they work together with Starscream and his Seekers to capture and restrain several of King Sombra's brainwashed minions.
In the Treehouse Live! My Little Pony show, the Wonderbolts are described as Celestia's "exclusive aerial acrobatic team".
The Wonderbolts are flying daredevil Pegasi who perform amazing aerial acrobatics. Rainbow Dash dreams of becoming a Wonderbolt one day and even goes off to Wonderbolts Academy for training. Spitfire, Soarin, Misty Fly, and the other Wonderbolts are more than just great performers; they're heroes who race to the aid of anypony who needs them.
The Elements of Harmony guidebook
THE WONDERBOLTS are an elite squad of Pegasus ponies who perform amazing aerial feats of derring-do at competitions across the lands of Equestria. SPITFIRE is team captain and a spirited competitor. SOARIN loves blazing a trail through the clouds—but only when he's not chowing down on one of Applejack's pies. Other team members include Blaze, Fire Streak, Fleetfoot, High Winds, Lightning Streak, Misty Fly, Rapidfire, Silver Lining, Surprise, and Wave Chill.
Volume II guidebook
Look, up in the sky! It's the Wonderbolts! In ancient times, Princess Celestia needed a team of Earth ponies, Unicorns, and Pegasi to help protect Equestria from harm, so she assembled a brave battalion of plucky ponies picked from the E.U.P. Guard of Protective Pony Platoons. As their numbers grew, Celestia drafted General Firefly to select the best fliers in all the land for an all-star team called the Wonderbolts! Together, these ponies perform death-defying aerial stunts, delighting audiences across Equestria. Young ponies with the skill, ambition, and heart are encouraged to apply to the Wonderbolts Academy, where they'll learn all the tricks of the trade and even a few surprises.
Partially translucent mini-figure toys of Spitfire, Soarin, and Misty Fly were leaked in early August 2012, and their corresponding collector cards were leaked in late 2012; all three pairs of toys and cards were released in January 2013 as part of the seventh wave of mystery packs, which is themed around The Wonderbolts and the Crystal Empire. Spitfire and Soarin's cards misidentify the two ponies as each other, though the wave's packaging identifies them correctly. Misty Fly's name comes both from her card and from the packaging of the wave.
An upcoming Target-exclusive collection of mini-figures called the Wonderbolts Cloudsdale Mini Collection includes ten figures: Rainbow Dash, Spitfire, Soarin, Fleetfoot, High Winds, Icy Mist, Lightning Streak, Silver Zoom, Thunderlane, and Wave Chill.
Little, Brown's My Little Pony Friendship is Magic official guidebook My Little Pony: The Elements of Harmony lists Spitfire and Soarin and states that "Other team members include Blaze, Fire Streak, Fleetfoot, High Winds, Lightning Streak, Misty Fly, Rapidfire, Silver Lining, Surprise, and Wave Chill."
- Jayson Thiessen answering a question on Twitter (2011-12-16). Retrieved on 2012 September 18.
- Lauren Faust via Twitter (2013-03-15). Retrieved on 2013 March 15.
- Meghan McCarthy on Twitter (2013-10-22). Retrieved on 2013 October 22.
- Spa Pony Set Finally Revealed!. Equestria Daily (2012-08-07). Retrieved on 2012 August 17.
- My Little Pony Friendship is Magic 2 Inch PVC Figure Series 6 Box [24 Mystery Packs Pre-Order ships January]. Retrieved on 2012 December 10.
- "The Elements of Harmony" book (2013-05-28). Retrieved on 2013 May 28.
- クラウドチェイサー改名？. フレンドシップ研究所 (2013-05-28). Retrieved on 2013 May 28.