cephalopod9 wrote:Does anyone care to give an (in universe) explanation of the cutie marks?
Most ponies seem to have a name, personality and cutie mark that all go together. Some more than others; "Pinkie Pie" isn't very descriptive, but her party balloons cutie mark fits her energetic personality, Twilight Sparkle has sparkles for her cutie mark, but neither seems to correlate much with her personality. In the background we see ponies whose cutie marks correlate with their jobs. Did they base their careers on their cutie marks, or did their personalities conform to their jobs and shape their cutie marks?
Cutie marks are clearly a sign of maturity, but are they genetic or congenital latent traits that develop later in life, or are they purely spiritual/magical indicators of conscious choices?
Do cutie marks ever change? Do any ponies get embarrassing or inappropriate cutie marks?
Apple Jack's whole family has apple themed names and cutie marks, meanwhile Pinky Pie's family has a rock farming theme. Are mismatched cutie marks a source of familial tension?
The main ponies all got their marks close together, and related to the same incident, is that typical?
I believe the TVtropes article about MLP:FiM had answers to most of those questions, from what I remember:
-A cutie mark represents something that the pony is BOTH very good at and loves doing: twilight is doing magic, pinkie is making people happy, rarity is bringing the hidden beauty in things, applejack is apple farming, fluttershy is caring for animals, rainbow dash is flying/going fast/WINNING (yeah RD is kinda awkward). So their "jobs" come naturally from what they are good at and love doing.
-There's no canon explanation towards what makes them appear other than "when a pony finds what makes them special, what they are really good at".
-Nothing canon about cutie marks changing or strange/awkward cutie marks, I'd say they'd never change because the system is kind of flawless. Once you find the thing that you are good at, love doing and makes you special you get your cutie mark. If it wasn't truly your special trait then it wouldn't have appeared. Awkward marks would appear for ponies with special abilities towards awkward things...
-Nothing canon towards family tension with different cutie marks, but Apple Bloom being good at carpentry or trying things not related to apples doesn't seem to bother Applejack.
-Finally "Every pony everywhere has a special magical connection with her friends, maybe even before she's met them.", it's the same [fanon] explanation given in TVtropes for why Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo are seen together in the pilot episode even before they become friends.