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2503475 No. 2503475
While thinking of a discussion topic to mull over at work I thought it might be interesting to discuss which pony is which ponies best friend. Though I quickly came to the conclusion that this isn't really debatable. While all of the mane cast are friends on some level, there are easily three mutual best friendships among the six.

Here they are (and why):

Twilight <==> Apple Jack
First seen in: Apple Buck Season, (though it's hinted at in the opening for Ticket Master). Their relationship is based mostly on a mutual respect for hard work, they also tend towards being the most grounded of cast as well as the most stubborn, making it natural that they would prefer each other's company.

Pinkie Pie <===> Rainbow Dash
First seen in: Griffon the Brush Off.
While their tendency for pranks is their initial bonding point, they're also prone to excitability and (on occasion) acting without thinking. Both are proud of their special talents, but have unfounded insecurities about them, Rainbow Dash in Sonic Rainboom and Pinkie Pie in Party of One. Party of One is also notable for its development of their relationship, after all it is Rainbow Dash that comes to save Pinkie from her baseless depression.

Fluttershy <===========> Rarity
First seen in: Green isn't Your Color, (but hinted at throughout earlier episodes)
The two most effeminate ponies in the cast get along mostly due to peripheral knowledge and interests. The obvious connections being Fluttershy's ability to handle Opal and her "freaky knowledge of sewing." Their elements are also all about selflessness.

That being said, there's a symmetry here in these friendships: all of the three types of ponies is paired both of the other types. Err, to be absolutely clear here I mean to say they're divvied up as such:

Unicorn <=> Earth Pony
Earth Pony <=> Pegasus
Pegasus <=> Unicorn

Totally balanced, I love finding symmetry in things. It makes the OCD in me happy.
Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 2503476
>Totally balanced, I love finding symmetry in things. It makes the OCD in me happy.

Ditto, there's TONS of symmetry between them, and I love it.
>> No. 2503477
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Two mare team combos, eh?

Pinkie Pie >==< Twilight

Applejack >==< Rarity

Fluttershy >==< Rainbow Dash

Everypony gets pissed till they all start mobbing, starting from Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie.
>> No. 2503478
If you like symetry, check this out:
The mane 6 has two ponies of each race (pegasus, unicorn and earth pony).
For each of these races, there's one pony whose special talent/cutie mark is related to her race (Rainbow Dash, Twilight Sparkle and Applejack) and one pony whose talent/cutie mark isn't related to it (Fluttershy, Rarity, Pinkie Pie).
Also, it seems the girliest ponies are the ones whose talent isn't related to their race.

Not sure if that means anything, but that's something I noticed.
>> No. 2503479
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3 of them have two word names, the other 3 have one word names. i of each type has a name of each size. All of them (except Twilight) have 3 syllables in their names. Twilight is exempt from this, but she's the main character, so it's okay. The girliest ones are Fluttershy, Rarity, and Pinkie, one of each. Same goes for the less girly ones, Applejack, Rainbow, and Twilight, one of each. One of each pony type also has a younger sibling that is a CMC member (Scootaloo isn't related to RD, but lets just pretend her looking up to RD is close enough)
Speaking of the CMC, there is one of each pony type, Earth, Pegasus, Unicorn. There is one that is girly, Sweetie Belle, one that's a tomboy, Scootaloo, and one in the middle, Apple Bloom. The middle one also happens to be the 'main' one (due to being featured first, naturally)

>> No. 2503480
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I was initially thinking there might also be some symmetry in terms of conflict episodes. Where a conflict episode is any in which two of the mane cast are at odds with each other. There are five, that I can think of so far.

There is a trinity of conflict episodes involving Apple Jack, Rainbow Dash and Rarity. (Note that there is one pony of each race here.)

Rarity >---< Apple Jack
In Look Before You Sleep.

Apple Jack >---< Rainbow Dash
In Fall Weather Friends.

Rainbow Dash >---< Rarity
In Sonic Rainboom.

The symmetry breaks down when we look at the last two.

Twilight >---< Pinkie Pie
In Feeling Pinkie Keen.

Rarity >---< Fluttershy
In Green Isn't Your Color.

Oh well.
>> No. 2503481
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I got the impression that Pinkie and Dash are not the best of friends. I mean it seems pretty clear that Pinkie annoys the hell out of Dash.
>> No. 2503482
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Dash has problems with all the mane cast. Admittedly this is probably the least explored relationship of the three. But their relationship is a major theme at the end of both Griffon the Brush Off and Party of One. It's also touched upon in Over a Barrel.

Sure Dash is annoyed with Pinkie Pie from time to time, but that's just Dash being Dash. She has terrible pony skills after all.
>> No. 2503483
A bit off topic, but isn't that the same look Pinkie Pie gives at the end of Bridle Gossip?
>> No. 2503484
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She stares right into your soul. Though I do love that pose.
>> No. 2503485

Rainbow Dash is kind of a dick.
>> No. 2503486
"I don't have one!"
>> No. 2503487

The conflict between Twilight and Pinkie Pie was somewhat one-sided though, compared to the others.
>> No. 2503488
Twilight Sparkle hands Dash a book, the title says "Reading comprehension and you."
>> No. 2503489

To add a little more credit to your symmetry, the last two conflicts seem to be a little more superficial.

One could argue from dawn to dusk what pinkie sense is exactly, or even if it's part of pinkie's personality type. We can say, however, Twilight's conflict is with the sense itself and not so much Pinkie. And the conflict between Rarity and Fluttershy seems to be more of a conflict of circumstance, instead with each other.

On the other side of the coin, the conflicts between Dash, Applejack and Rarity seem to stem from each pony's pride, system of honor and vanity, respectively. Traits inherent in each pony's personality that the other must learn to tolerate; show's premise blah blah blah...
>> No. 2503490
What about the "defend Fluttershy's honor"?
Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy must have been close friends, at least back in flight school.
RD also asked Fluttershy to cheer for her (but that might only be because she was the only other pegasus in the group)
>> No. 2503491
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Both very valid points.

Here's another asymmetrical one I hadn't considered.

Twilight >---< Apple Jack
In Apple Buck Season.

Though I suppose it could also be dismissed because of its one-sided-ness.
>> No. 2503492
That's the a fore mentioned stubbornness, supposin' the creators wanted to create as many combinations as possible
>> No. 2503493

>(but that might only be because she was the only other pegasus in the group)

From Sonic Rainboom:

Rainbow Dash: "I wish you guys could come to Cloudsdale to see me compete in the Best Young Flyer Competition... Fluttershy's a great support, but her cheering isn't exactly inspirational."

While there's not a whole lot of conflict in their relationship, they don't have a lot in common either. They seem to be pretty much polar opposites. As far as defending Fluttershy, keep in mind that, although she's an asshat from time to time, her element is Loyalty after all.
>> No. 2503494
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>> No. 2503495
Though when it came to "defending Fluttershy's honor" it seems as if RD's competitiveness, in her race as a filly, over-shadowed that sentiment. Letting Fluttershy fall to her would-be death.
>> No. 2503496
I know that feel
>> No. 2503497
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>>my face when I get that reference.
>> No. 2503498
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Come to think of it, the only pony in the mane six that hasn't acted annoyed with Pinkie Pie at some point is Fluttershy. At least not that I can think of.

Wait. Crap, nix that.

Even Fluttershy has gotten annoyed with Pinkie Pie.
>> No. 2503499
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It goes a bit further than that. You've got three ponies on each side who are outstanding examples of their race's special traits, and three who are unique and unusual exceptions.

The Exemplary Three:

-Unicorns are known for magic. Twilight is the most powerful magic user shown so far (among non-princesses, natch.)

-Earth Ponies are known for affinity with the land. Applejack is in charge of Ponyville's biggest farm and knows all there is to know about growing apples.

-Pegasi are known for flight. Dash is a Best Young Flyers Competition winner and the only known pony to ever perform a Sonic Rainboom.

All three are highly devoted to working on these skills, which they would not be able to have if they were any other kind of pony.

Then there's the other three. They are all exceptional examples of iconoclasts: Ponies whose talents are NOT related to their race.

The Exceptional Three:

-Rarity designs clothes. Every other fashion pony we've seen is an Earth Pony. Even her trademark accessory, gems, come from the Earth, which may mean that while she needs magic to find them, an Earth Pony might be able to find them intuitively.

-Pinkie is a baker/party planner. Not only are these things unrelated to an Earth Pony's powers, her hyperactive, quick movements make her seem much like a Pegasus, and her ability to bend reality to her will implies magic, a unicorn trait.

-Fluttershy works with animals; almost exclusively LAND animals. Despite being a Pegasus, she tends to walk more than fly, spend her most of her time on the ground, and even has an ability to communicate with the creatures better than most. She explicitly says she wants to "never leave" the ground when she first discovers it. She has more Earth Pony traits than Pegasus traits.

There really is an amazing balance among the mane 6, in several ways.
>> No. 2503500
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Thats an almost perfect analysis, good job
>> No. 2503501
I know that feel, Pinkie. Everyone has been annoyed by me before.

Nice to see I'm not the only one who made this observation.
>> No. 2503502
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This thread makes every aspect of my symmetry loving nature very happy indeed.

It's that three dimensional character relations that is one of the shows strongest elements really. That ability to know how each pony feels about another naturally and discuss their relationships without needing it spelled out.

Only very few shows really achieve that. Firefly's the only one that comes to mind elsewise.
>> No. 2503503
fluttershy and rainbow dash both own a regular home

twilight and pinkie both live in someone elses property

rarity and applejack both live where they work
>> No. 2503504
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My little pony: Symmetry is magic
>> No. 2503505
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Both of the members of each race have color schemes that are somewhat complimentary as well.

Dash's Coat is Blue, while Fluttershy's is Yellowish. Fluttershy's hair is pink, which is pretty much the only color Dash's hair is not.

Pinkie Pie is shades of pink, while Applejack is orange and yellow. There is a slight overlap here, as both have a decent amount of red shades in their color scheme. However, Pinkie is red mixed with blue, while Applejack is red mixed with yellow.

Twilight and Rarity both share purple hues, but Twilight's coat is the darkest of the mane cast, while Rarity's is the lightest.
>> No. 2503506
Err, disregard Pinkie being red mixed with blue, dunno where that came from.
>> No. 2503507
It's sorta true... red/violet. Just very very light blue, heh.
>> No. 2503508
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I've been trying for a while to make sense of the eye color choices in the mane cast, while there appears to be no perfect symmetry, I did notice two notable things:

One pony of each kind has blue eyes.

Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie have eyes that closely match each-others coat, which is cute. <3
>> No. 2503509
So... they have eyes for eachother?

Pinkiedash is now canon
>> No. 2503510
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Can someone briefly explain this colour wheel thing to me? What's it mean?
>> No. 2503511

I would assume that one of the first things taught to any pegasus is how to stabilize and slow a fall so as to land without getting hurt. In fact, they're probably like cats in that they have more to fear from a short fall that doesn't give them time to react.

This could easily result in a dismissive attitude to seeing a fellow pegasus fall from a height, because they 'know' that even the weakest flier can safely descend from almost any height.
>> No. 2503512
or rainbow could have flew past her so fast, that she didn't notice her falling
>> No. 2503513
I personally like to think Rainbow Dash being a good friend with Applejack. They have alot in common, and she takes naps in her trees for some odd reason. Also, I like how they add a little bickering type of chemistry for these two.. I don't know, they kinda remind me of me and my friend.
>> No. 2503514
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While there's definitely a bond between the two of them it's tempered by the rivalry they share, as such we really see them arguing almost as often as we see them getting along. If Rainbow Dash is going to butt heads with somepony among the mane cast it'll more often than not be Apple Jack.
>> No. 2503515
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Another bit of symmetry.

There's something else notable about the three ponies in the conflict trinity mentioned above (Apple Jack, Rainbow Dash and Rarity.) have something else in common:
All three are associated with one of the Cutie Mark Crusaders. While scootaloo's relation to Rainbow Dash is suspect, it would be unfair to say she doesn't treat Dash like an older sibling.
>> No. 2503516
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Applejack and Rainbow Dash are rather "masculine", Twilight and Pinkie Pie are somewhat androgynous, and Fluttershy and Rarity are more traditionally "feminine". Again with the 3 symmetrical pairs.
>> No. 2503517
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I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed this. Scootaloo's relationship with Rainbow Dash is a lot deeper than just fangirl, if that scene is any indicator.
>> No. 2503518

Yeah, although it's easy to see Dash being annoyed or dismissive of Scoot, it's obvious, to me at least, that she does care. Sounds like about right for a sibling relationship, relation or not.
>> No. 2503519
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Something I noticed a few days ago:

SwEEtie BeLLe
>> No. 2503520
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Honestly, it seems to me that the plan was initially to make Dash and Scootaloo sisters, but it got vetoed by Hasbro. Which makes no sense, because I think Dash would make a very good older sister; she is very protective and loyal to those she cares about, after all.

Dash probably shows up at the end of Showstoppers as a "take that" to Hasbro.
>> No. 2503521
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>> No. 2503522
oh yeah the Stressed-unstressed-Stressed thing is really neat. It extends to most(but not all) of the mane cast as well. RBD,PP,AJ,FS. (Rarity too sometimes depending on who is saying it, but TS has too many syllables).
>> No. 2503523
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Um, I was referring to the double letters.

But you make a good point, too.
>> No. 2503524
oh horseapples, i just noticed that. you had to point it out twice for me to get it.
>> No. 2503525
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Don't sweat it.
>> No. 2503526
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Just for the hell of it.
>> No. 2503527
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The race balance thing goes deeper. Consider this: Who are the fandom's three favorite background ponies?

This just put me in mind of the Robin Williams movie Man of the Year. If you've seen it, you'll know why.
>> No. 2503528
While not part of the mane cast, there's another nice bit of thought put into the ponyville apple siblings.

Their colors mane and coat colors are shared with another siblings coat or mane (respectively):

Red: Big Mac (coat) / Apple Bloom (mane)
Orange: Apple Jack (coat) / Big Mac (mane)
Yellow: Apple Bloom (coat) / Apple Jack (mane)

Also just noticed, their coat color is also organized by age according to the order of the rainbow. (neat.)
>> No. 2503529

>> No. 2503530
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Excuse crappy MS paint edit, but I fixed your character relations symmetry chart so that the symmetry remains in the conflict section, with reasoning.
>> No. 2503531
>> No. 2503532
Another bit of Symmetry

Voice actors:
Ashleigh Ball = Applejack; Rainbow Dash
Andrea Libman = Pinkie Pie; Fluttershy
Tara Strong = Twilight Sparkle
Tabitha St. Germain = Rarity

The first two voice actors have one earth pony character, and one pegasus. The unicorns, however,stand on their own.
>> No. 2503533
I've thought to put them in two Triptyches instead of in pairings.


You see the conflict between heart/mind for one in 'Feeling Pinkie Keen' where Pinkie's intuitive acceptance of the paranormal goes against Twilight's well-thought through worldview.

You can even see Pinkie acting as Twilight's 'conscience' in 'Green is not your Color'!

Also, both of the 'heart' characters have the most ridiculous breakdowns, whereas the two will characters have mostly an existential crisis of completing a particular task.

You can see 'mind versus will' in 'Look before you Sleep'.

Also I guess in 'Party of One', it is the will that delivers the heart from depression... how symbolic indeed.
>> No. 2503534
Too much symmetry up in this b****.
>> No. 2503535
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Arch bait, anyone?

>Tasty symmetry
>> No. 2503536
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If I could be completely honest here, two of the added conflicts on this list seem to suffer from the same problem that >>2503489 mentioned, they're one sided.

Twilight/Pinkie Pie in Feeling Pinkie Keen has been discussed, as such I'll skip it.

In Dragonshy the conflict is entirely due to the fact that Fluttershy is too afraid to be honest, Twilight had no idea until they were right outside the cave and when Fluttershy gives up and walks away Twilight lets her.

As for the Pinkie/Fluttershy conflict is superficial compared to the big ones listed because it's not the focus of the episode and as such it feels a little forced.

A Bird in the Hoof is, however, a valid point. I'm inclined to believe that it holds the same weight as one of the big three. If I could find anything at fault with it I'd say it mirrors the issue with Feeling Pinkie Keen in that it's another episode where Twilight is fighting against a pony's nature. But I'm grasping at straws here, anyone have any thoughts?
>> No. 2503537
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Another thought, the order of the mane cast singing their parts in At the gala:

Pegasus > Earth Pony > Unicorn x2

And they also organized themselves when they lined up. <3 Symmetry.
>> No. 2503538
>ITT: Grown men discussion complex symmetry in a children's TV show
>> No. 2503539
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This thread has so much delicious symmetry.
I can't stand it yet I love it so much.
>> No. 2503540
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Just look which site you're on, silly.
>> No. 2503541
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Who is THIS?

Earthy among her pastel peers, she is striking...
>> No. 2503542
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No she's n-
Hmm, maybe...
Okay, you've got a point.

My guess: a potential idea that may or may not see light of day.
>> No. 2503543
Actually, she and the pony to her direct left are the only two ponies in the crowd that are not clone extras.

... I wonder why they did that. Could they be cameos from the animation crew, perhaps?
>> No. 2503544
This seems likely. The earthy one is definitely very striking, now that you mention it.
>> No. 2503552
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I'd be willing to guess the two of them are either based on, or designed by, two of the more notable animators. The more I look at them they're just too well designed to be your average extra. FiM Wiki doesn't have them named, I guess for the most part they've been overlooked.

Also, I'm proud this made it's way to /arch/! I'm going to celebrate by working on my fanfic. :D
>> No. 2504013
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I wanted to jump in on the whole symmetry thing. I agree with the OP's interpretation of which pony had which best friend. There's even a foreshadowing in the first couple of episodes- like when they're falling down the hill, which pony saves who? Fluttershy grabbed Rarity first, Rainbow Dash grabbed Pinkie and AppleJack Grabbed Twilight. Within this symmetry I think each pony has a polar opposite-

Twilight is opposite of Rainbow Dash
Fluttershy is opposite of Pinkie Pie
AppleJack is the opposite of Rarity

Notice in each group has a Unicorn, a Pegasus and an Earth pony. The reason the three of these are opposite is because
Twilight=studious, level headed, thinks before she acts
Rainbow- outgoing, adventurous, acts before thinking
Fluttershy- shy, soft-spoken, attention to detail
Pinkie- social and outspoken
AppleJack- outdoorsy, works, not afraid to get dirty, tomboyish
Rarity- prim and proper, etc.

There's 2 Unicorns, 2 Pegasus, and 2 Earth

Within their own species, of the 6 friends they're opposite from each other
For instance- Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash are opposites, Rainbow is daring and loud, Fluttershy is sweet and shy
Twilight and Rarity- Twilight is all about brains and logic, Rarity is more about looks and beauty
Apple and Pinkie- Apple is all about work and Pinkie is all about fun.

I had more, I'll think of them later
>> No. 2504024
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>like when they're falling down the hill, which pony saves who?

Sir, you are my hero. I never noticed that, that's a brilliant catch.
>> No. 2505302
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"Don't worry, your Auntie Pinkie Pie will take care of it!"

"I'm a year older than you" :|

>> No. 2505305
Also, anypony notice that Dash and Rarity have basically NOTHING in common, and are pretty much NEVER seen together unless at least 1 of the other 4 are around?
>> No. 2505307
>>Pinkie is a baker/party planner. Not only are these things unrelated to an Earth Pony's powers, her hyperactive, quick movements make her seem much like a Pegasus, and her ability to bend reality to her will implies magic, a unicorn trait.

>>and her ability to bend reality to her will implies magic, a unicorn trait.

>>bend reality to her will

Made me lol
>> No. 2508219
They're basically friends because they associate with the same set of ponies, its only natural that they get along to some extent.
>> No. 2508222
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If you would split the background ponies you would notice that (for the most part)the models would repeat only flipped for the 1st and 3rd row. Also, The ponies in the 2nd (middle) row are in 3 groups of 2 with unrepeated models as the 1st and 3rd rows are in 2 groups of 3 repeating models. Hope this is with the topic and understandable.
>> No. 2510272
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Wow, I totally thought I wouldn't have anything to add to this thread until the new season. I found another little tidbit of symmetry; At the beginning of Boast Busters we see three of Twilight's friends challenge Trixie and get shown up. Applejack, Rainbow Dash, and Rarity. Making that one each, Earth pony, Pegasus, and Unicorn, also notable for being the three in the mane cast most prone to conflicts.
>> No. 2510334
Both Earth ponies have jobs involving food.
Both pegasi have jobs involving nature.
Both unicorns have jobs selling things. (A bit of a stretch, Rarity sells clothes and Twilight sells books and book accessories).
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