The Equine Phenomenon: My Analysis of the Popularity of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic

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Dtox333:

him over there:
You know it's funny, it's been said before but it's interesting to see how much the fans have taken the love and tolerate message to heart. It isn't really about the show blah blah blah speech goes here but t really seems that way. Having a quality show about being nice and stuff creates a label for nice people to come together under.

It's like a support group, only instead of being for minorities or alternative lifestyles like vegetarianism it's about being a nice person who isn't a dick. A common ground to congregate and unite good and nice people where they're immune to the stigma of douchebag internet assholes like me. Honestly if people catch you being nice on the internet and it has absolutely nothing to do with My little problems: the friendzone is tragic then fuck what's coming up next, at least in my experience. The only other place I've witnessed the nice bubble phenomenon is on Nintendocaprisun videos.

Do I like the show? No, I think it sucks and even if it isn't just for little girls it still sucks in general to me but I see what it means to people.

It doesn't matter whether you loved, disliked, or even despised the show, your observation and input is much appreciated.

I feel the same way, I feel the show has acted as a nexus for decent enough people to congregate together and express feelings and emotions that they've been wanting too.

honestly, throughout my life, I'v always been apprehensive to the cute, cuddly, feminine things that I'v wanted to "daaawww" at, there was just always something keeping me from doing that. only once in a while would I get a dosage of cuteness from short videos on youtube with puppies or something.

ever since getting into MLP, I'v tossed that mentality out the window. I enjoy and openly appreciate things of all kinds of colors and themes, whether it's red and black or pink and blue, action oriented or emotionally tear jerking.

I'll watch MLP, or perhaps enjoy some relatively feminine artwork/media one day, and then watch the entirety of the spawn series the next.

I guess it seems sad that it took a cartoon to make me realize these things, but I'm happy it happened this way and I'm certainly glad to have come in contact with a community of like minded individuals.

I mostly feel the same way but what I was getting at wasn't a release from cute things or media gender roles or whatever, I meant just being a decent person. Since you know:
image

It isn't just about being able to like girly and cute things. It's about being able to go "I love you guys, you're awesome." or be an optimist or sensitive but having a label to create a place where you're shielded from the type of people that are often stereotyped as xbox live or youtube users. If that makes any sense.

Plus I've been D'awwing all my life at stuff, mybe because having younger sibings made me give it a chance. I still watch downright subpar children's shows like max and ruby. Love me some max and ruby.
image

him over there:

Dtox333:

him over there:
You know it's funny, it's been said before but it's interesting to see how much the fans have taken the love and tolerate message to heart. It isn't really about the show blah blah blah speech goes here but t really seems that way. Having a quality show about being nice and stuff creates a label for nice people to come together under.

It's like a support group, only instead of being for minorities or alternative lifestyles like vegetarianism it's about being a nice person who isn't a dick. A common ground to congregate and unite good and nice people where they're immune to the stigma of douchebag internet assholes like me. Honestly if people catch you being nice on the internet and it has absolutely nothing to do with My little problems: the friendzone is tragic then fuck what's coming up next, at least in my experience. The only other place I've witnessed the nice bubble phenomenon is on Nintendocaprisun videos.

Do I like the show? No, I think it sucks and even if it isn't just for little girls it still sucks in general to me but I see what it means to people.

It doesn't matter whether you loved, disliked, or even despised the show, your observation and input is much appreciated.

I feel the same way, I feel the show has acted as a nexus for decent enough people to congregate together and express feelings and emotions that they've been wanting too.

honestly, throughout my life, I'v always been apprehensive to the cute, cuddly, feminine things that I'v wanted to "daaawww" at, there was just always something keeping me from doing that. only once in a while would I get a dosage of cuteness from short videos on youtube with puppies or something.

ever since getting into MLP, I'v tossed that mentality out the window. I enjoy and openly appreciate things of all kinds of colors and themes, whether it's red and black or pink and blue, action oriented or emotionally tear jerking.

I'll watch MLP, or perhaps enjoy some relatively feminine artwork/media one day, and then watch the entirety of the spawn series the next.

I guess it seems sad that it took a cartoon to make me realize these things, but I'm happy it happened this way and I'm certainly glad to have come in contact with a community of like minded individuals.

I mostly feel the same way but what I was getting at wasn't a release from cute things or media gender roles or whatever, I meant just being a decent person. Since you know:
image

It isn't just about being able to like girly and cute things. It's about being able to go "I love you guys, you're awesome." or be an optimist or sensitive but having a label to create a place where you're shielded from the type of people that are often stereotyped as xbox live or youtube users. If that makes any sense.

Plus I've been D'awwing all my life at stuff, mybe because having younger sibings made me give it a chance. I still watch downright subpar children's shows like max and ruby. Love me some max and ruby.
image

no, I knew that's what you meant, I just went off on my own little tangent, and mentioned how my feelings are supported by a community of like minded people.

SirBryghtside:

Dtox333:
As a big fan of the show, and as one who studies sociology and psychology, my own personal theory on the show's widespread popularity is how outside the norm something like this is.

it manages to combine the things demonized by other males (on the basis that we're, as expected by general society, supposed to be masculine and avoid things feminine) with attractive qualities that aren't usually accompanied by shows of the same nature, as in ones that are feminine and somewhat childish.

MLP:FiM manages to be straight up cute, positive, and fun while still offering developed, relatable characters, appealing animation, professional voice work, decent writing, clever humor, and mature/sensible dialogue. as well, the characters avoid perpetuating norms stereotypes that are usually associated with "girls" entertainment, they have realistic flaws and desires, making them more relatable. These are qualities that are unexpected to be found in a show with such feminine overtones (as is the case where "girly" is often associated with "lame" or low quality). but because they were present, appealing to us and entertaining us, it allowed us to ease into the feminine aspect, allowing us to accept and even adhere to it.

It's that aspect, that I feel, is what compels so many of us males to fall in love with it, because it's so outside the norm and different, as if it's satiating a craving we've been deprived of, due to the expectation of us to be masculine.

To test this, I'v tried multiple programs with the same girly, sugary, feminine overtones, such as strawberry shortcake, to see if I enjoy those just as much. Instead, I found them to be rather revolting, mainly because they're just so poorly made and of low quality, in almost every respect of the word.

I would also like to note that the difference in cultures may also factor into the phenomenon as well. people from certain countries and regions, where gender stereotyping and gender roles aren't a norm, seem to be more easily dissatisfied with the cartoon, while people from other places, such as general american society, where gender roles and stereotypes are more dominate, are more prone to embrace it.

that's just an observation of mine however, I haven't enough research or evidence to fully support that notion.

I'd attest to this. I've gone through all the phases - mainstream, hipster, nerd culture - and I've just stopped caring about what I watch, play or do, so long as I'm enjoying it. And while I enjoyed My Little Pony, I didn't find it anywhere near as good as, say, Lucky Star, a show which is as girly as they come. So it's good, but the popularity seems to be mostly to do with dipping outside cultural norms. Which is fine, to be honest.

Anyway, this was a good 'review' :) Hit on all the major points of the fandom, and was both informative and accessible. Well done!

Although "good" is subjective and based on opinion, I do admit that there are many things with much greater productional value than MLP, such as the walking dead and dexter (which are programs I also enjoy), yet I still get far more enjoyment out of MLP than I do any of those other programs.

Dtox333:
As a big fan of the show, and as one who studies sociology and psychology, my own personal theory on the show's widespread popularity is how outside the norm something like this is.

it manages to combine the things demonized by other males (on the basis that we're, as expected by general society, supposed to be masculine and avoid things feminine) with attractive qualities that aren't usually accompanied by shows of the same nature, as in ones that are feminine and somewhat childish.

MLP:FiM manages to be straight up cute, positive, and fun while still offering developed, relatable characters, appealing animation, professional voice work, decent writing, clever humor, and mature/sensible dialogue. as well, the characters avoid perpetuating norms stereotypes that are usually associated with "girls" entertainment, they have realistic flaws and desires, making them more relatable. These are qualities that are unexpected to be found in a show with such feminine overtones (as is the case where "girly" is often associated with "lame" or low quality). but because they were present, appealing to us and entertaining us, it allowed us to ease into the feminine aspect, allowing us to accept and even adhere to it.

It's that aspect, that I feel, is what compels so many of us males to fall in love with it, because it's so outside the norm and different, as if it's satiating a craving we've been deprived of, due to the expectation of us to be masculine.

(...)

I would also like to note that the difference in cultures may also factor into the phenomenon as well. people from certain countries and regions, where gender stereotyping and gender roles aren't a norm, seem to be more easily dissatisfied with the cartoon, while people from other places, such as general american society, where gender roles and stereotypes are more dominate, are more prone to embrace it.

that's just an observation of mine however, I haven't enough research or evidence to fully support that notion.

Exactly what I was thinking while reading the review. MLP as a way to express rebellion against traditional gender roles and societal stereotypes thus its unusual fanbase. Now that part about the cultural aspect sounds really interesting and would make for an interesting study, though I'd imagine that, like you implied, not only gender roles but also ideas of maturity enter here. Case in point: The western animation ago ghetto

Also, since you study it: do you perchance know some interesting unversity grade introductory books in both Psychology and Sociology? I have been looking to broaden my horizon in both subjects for a while now yet haven't found the time to look for some good books....

Now as for the OP:

A very nice read, though nothing that I didn't know already. And to be honest, I think thats a problem. Your review didn't really add something new to the whole MLP discussion. The only points it offers are the traditional selling points of the series: cute, comedic animation, humour thats not only aimed at kids and likeable characters. Though, to be fair, you said you didn't read the other threads about it so I guess its not your fault.

Your writing style seemed to be rather fluent and offering examples like the one about Derpy definitely helps to get your points across. While skimming through it at this point, though, I can't help but get the feeling that maybe you could have organized the review a bit better: twice you broach subjects (the bronies and the animation to be precise) but quickly get to something else only return to those later on - maybe grouping them to their respective arguments would have been better. But thats a small critique compared to an otherwise well done read.

Ohh one other thing: make your pictures a bit smaller or use less - maybe put them on the side and let the text flow around them. As it is now, the pictures almost seem to outweigh the text, thus diminishing its effect.

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