Well… I guess being a fantasy writer, this was going to come up eventually. As someone who goes to comic con almost every year, I’m no stranger to seeing grown men carrying MLP stuff around, or perusing MLP artwork tables. Being someone who TRIES not to judge people, I assumed they were buying the items for their daughters and shrugged them off.
However, over time, I noticed more and more that the people around the MLP tables were grown men or young men that likely didn’t have kids. It was at this point that one of my friends informed me that they were most likely bronies… ‘What the heck are bronies?’ I asked.
That’s when I found out that there was a male demographic that loved the MLP mythos. Being a guy fresh out of college, my mind jumped to the most perverse conclusion. Honestly, it sent chills down my spine. Well… come to find out from a friend… who knew a rather suspicious amount about the subject that there was another term for those guys, known as ‘clompers.’ DISCLAIMER: IF YOU GOOGLE THAT TERM, IT’S YOUR OWN DAMN FAULT!!!
Still… grown men watching a show intended for little girls. I had to admit that it just didn’t compute. However, as time passed, I started learning more and more about them… and apparently they are the largest demographic for the damn show!
Wigged out yet? Well… don’t be. As a father of two, I’ve been introduced to many a new show that I could have lived happily without watching; Wiggles, Cailou, Daniel Tiger’s (Ripoff of Mr. Rogers) Neighborhood, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, etc.
Then my wife introduces them to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Now I have a little sister, so I still have bad memories of the campyness of the dated 80’s show. So I sat down with my kids and watched the modern equivalent with them, fully expecting the same thing with updated animation…
Honestly, as far as kids shows go, it wasn’t bad. The voice actors are recognizable from other shows/video games, the stories while all centered around the idea that ‘Friendship will solve all of your problems’ range from harmless to engaging enough to keep you entertained. The characters… except for Rainbow Dash… are all very like-able and actually quite funny when they have their meltdowns. The situations are actually quite mature and respectful of their audiences. So all in all, it wasn’t a bad show at all.
My one complaint really is a character by the name of Discord.
Essentially, he’s an omnipotent, mischievous, God-like creature that loves chaos and mayhem. Portrayed by John de Lancie, he appears every once in a while to shake things up and teach the main characters a moral in his own twisted way…
GEE, DOES THAT SOUND LIKE ANYONE ELSE WE KNOW????
Yeah, beyond blatant…
But I digress, as time passed, I saw that there are actually social groups for these people, the term has become socially acceptable… and there are even parades in some place for people to congregate who enjoy the show. So yes, it does appear that being a brony has become a lot more acceptable.
So honestly, I admit that despite my best efforts, I had my preconceived notions about people like this, and I can honestly say that I was wrong. Sure there are people out there who like these characters for… unsavory reasons, but having seen the show with my kids and having it be one of the few shows they love that doesn’t make me want to pull my hair out, I can honestly say that I believe that there is a much larger group of people who enjoy the show because of the beautiful animation, engaging worlds, and decent stories. I can admit when I’m wrong.
I wouldn’t consider myself a brony, having only gotten into the show because of my kids, but as long as people are watching the show for those reasons… all power to you guys, go ahead and enjoy it.
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