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Why doesn’t Vinyl Scratch talk?


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Many within the g4 pony community have oft wondered by Vinyl Scratch (DJ Pon-3) hasn’t spoken a single word since her initial appearance. Curious minds have led to wonder if she is, in fact mute- whether by accident or by choice. She is seen having a preference to communicate through body language, if anything. 

I think this is a rather interesting development and poorly represented form of communication in media, as not everyone is either adept or willing to communicate through words. 

And I think that in Vinyl’s case, it could be explained as the latter, and by doing so, could paint her as a most powerful character. How could this be so? Well, 
Let’s try taking a look at what a spell” is. 

The root “spellam” originally meant story, saying, tale, history, narrative, fable and then the term ‘spell’ started to take on the meaning of a charm or magical incantation in the Middle Ages.

In the Indo-European tradition, words were always viewed as having magical abilities, or possessing a dangerous magic. For example, the daughter languages of Proto Indo-European arrange the consonants in the root for the animal “wolf “ in bizarre ways. This is probably because the original speakers (before 3000 BC) feared that if they said the actual word for ‘wolf’ it would magically cause the animal to appear. It’s the origin of ‘curse words’ — the belief that the usage of particular words had powerful negative effects — the ability to curse yourself or others.

Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it. – Albus Dumbledore. So what does all this magic talk really mean? Well, for writers, it means we’re magicians; we’re powerful. We can cast spells over the world by spelling words into existence and we can change the way people think, feel, and act. That’s our ability as writers, speakers, and storytellers, that’s our gift — to influence others, to create the unexpected, to change the way people see and understand the world, to put on a show.

Still don’t believe in the power of words? Finish this sentence:

“What if…”

Oh, the endless places those simple words, those six letters, can take you. The sparks of imagination burning in your brain this very moment. Your imagination, like a child’s, explodes with unrestrained possibility. What if you could use that very power of inspiration, creation, and connection with everyone you meet? Answer: you can.

We wielders of words, we sorcerers, charmers, creative conjurers, magical beasts, we are free to spell words into existence at will — writing that’s crafted to convince, to change, to instill a sense, a feeling in someone beyond their control. There’s real power there. We are undoubtedly unstoppable.

Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little. – Tom Stoppard For non-writers, take note: that power is not held by writers alone. We’re ultimately talking about the brain — our endless canvas, where words live and breathe — and it’s open to all. Artists, designers, strategists, thinkers, and any sort of creator in this world: you’ve made it this far, so I have a gift for you: you, as well, are magical. You too have the power to create thoughts, feelings, and imagery in people’s minds in your own way. You speak, you write, you think, you are unstoppable, as well.

How? By using your passions and craft to tell stories. You are human and therefore you are a natural storyteller. It’s built into you. You can control minds. You do it for yourself without realizing. Every night your stories give you an escape, letting you play in fantasy worlds. You go to bed and your brain sits up telling itself wonderful stories, both memorable and mundane.

Mankind has spent thousands upon thousands of years developing the magic of communication and stories. How dare you not believe in it. Words are mankind’s greatest creation; capable of transcending time and space; capable of controlling the human mind; capable of anything. We see this mirrored also in how Twilight rewrites one of the greatest magicians known to ponykind’s spells- Starswirl the Bearded, in Magical Mystery Cure.

While we may look at Twilight Sparkle as a pony with an inexhaustible well of magical ability and spells through her bibliomaniacal tendencies, accesses, and lineage (Taking into account the profession of an author (and also spell crafter) her mother, Twilight Velvet has), then perhaps we can look at Vinyl as one who willingly rejects the amount of influence words , and thus, spells, might have on the world around her.   She constantly surrounds herself with the art form of music, rather than that of written word and influence.   Perhaps this can be seen as a Personal influence, as music can alter the listeners own mood and emotions. 

I suspect that Vinyl may have a far greater degree of control in the field of magical manipulation than Twilight herself- not only by refraining from crafting written and spoken spells, but also by showing that with great power can come greater responsibility, she indeed conducts herself far more responsibly by comparison. Vinyl has all the power in the world to influence others around her with a single word, a single spell. But I think she is willingly choosing not to. And THAT, is why she remains mute.

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So Vinyl is basically Black Bolt from The Inhumans. 

While the logistical reason is that Vinyl was given form, and by extension  a voice, because of the fandom, Hasbro didn't want to cause any backlash by either pandering too hard and hiring Jessie Nowhack or casting anyone else in the roll completely. But I have heard the argument that Vinyl either being mute or choosing not to speak would carry greater significance in the show. What fans want versus what they need. 

Vinyl being so powerful that music is her safest form of expression is a very unique take. You should write a fic on that. Beats being a vampire. 

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I think the reasoning outside of the show universe pretty much comes down to what @Denim&Venöm mentioned, Nowacking was without a doubt the voice of Vinyl, and so the show runners probably just took the safe route there.

That said, the idea that she's an ultra-powerful music wizard sounds hella dope! I'd never thought about it too much, but I always thought it was neat that she was a mute character. :mellow:

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Mute characters are a thing. It's especially common with background characters, which is what Vinyl Scratch is, and silent heroes have been a thing for...forever. Honestly though, I watched so many fan animations where Vinyl talked that I actually forgot she doesn't talk in the show until Pony Life reminded me. :coco:

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