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December 5, 2012
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The Deal With Bronies: Not So Anomalous

Journal Entry: Wed Dec 5, 2012, 9:40 PM
Okay, I've seen a lot of commentary on this peculiar, anomalous group to which I now identify myself. Bronies, (typically defined as) male adolescent and young adult fans of the show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (though other definitions are broader, this particular group is what I address,) are an interesting group in society. However, I think most of the speculation is entombed in an archaic way of thinking. Most things I have read (and the way I thought before I went through the stages to become a fanatic who now has an eighty-thousand-and-counting word fanfiction, myself, for the series,) try to explain away the group as anomalous, one in a billion bizarre goldmine for the Hasbro company, or they try to "get into the head of the Brony" or whatever.

I, however, have a different approach that is far less conservative in thought: the gender roles and stereotypes used to analyze this phenomenon are archaic. Several things lead to this particular situation. There have always been those among the machismo fueled halls of junior highs through colleges that found "girly" things interesting or enjoyable. People have been mocked for wanting to learn to cook or any other "feminine" interest. With the advent of an ever-growing and transforming social sphere on the Internet, people are more free to find their niches, people are more able to be themselves, and more able to meet with people who have similar interests. Further, with the nonjudgmental veil of the Internet and everyone having their own portable TV/cell phone/internet/whatever with them, people can view what they want without fearing some condemning eyes watching as they switch the channel to something of the sort. Kids might have felt embarrassed in an age where a family had maybe 3 TVs if, even their father, for example, walked in on them watching something like My Little Pony as a guy nearing adulthood. The Internet is the catalyst for a group like this to form. This is not the exception, it may very well be a new norm.

I come from inside the sphere of analysis, so I know that these are regular people. They're not deviants as some would try and have you believe. Sure there are strange ones in the fold, but if you look in any group you'll find oddities of any and every sort.

I, too, used to find the whole thing bizarre. I fought and fought the idea that this was real, and not some sarcastic plea for attention. Curiosity dawned on me, as it had for many a soon-to-be-Brony, and suddenly, there I was, asking a friend of mine for a link to figure out what the heck this was about. You know what I found?

It's a good show. It's a good show! That's why they like it. It's not that the show is aimed at males, so much as Faust and those who have run it since her departure simply made a show that wasn't pandering to or patronizing an audience. It was written with quality and care, and it became something worth experiencing. If you want to know what the big deal is, take off your stubbornness and take a look. Pick more than one episode, because there are a couple that disappoint. I know of few fans who were 100% satisfied with every episode, and which episodes disappoint vary from fan to fan, too. It's a fluid group of real people. The fandom exists because the show is good.

My hypothesis is that the entire analysis of the fandom is coming from an outdated system of gender roles. Guys can wear pink. Women can have buzz cuts. The very idea of "man" and "woman" isn't so simple as old systems imply, anyway. With the rise of the pride (LGBTQ(etc) including the sometimes, sadly, overlooked or even condemned from within trans* community members. Gender is complicated, especially in a world that tries far too hard to make gender overly simplistic,) and gender equality movements over the decades, sexuality, gender identity has become far more widely understood as a complicated thing, more of a spectrum than a polar situation. Within that, we still have "boys'" toys and "girls'" toys and the most stubborn among us would see that those two groups don't share their toys. In the middle were unisex things like LEGO toys, but even they have their "female" lines and their "male" lines (and to be honest, the girls toys always had more cool gemstones, and I wanted them all, but I, too, once thought "but I don't want to be the weird boy with girls toys" so I never bought any.)

In reality, making such a big deal over something so trivial is just shining a beacon on age-old prejudices. Not necessarily prejudices laced with disdain, but prejudices sparking unnecessary curiosity. What needs to be done is for those who find this so peculiar to discard their 1950s glasses and upgrade to some new eyewear. Bronies are not new, freedom to group with niches that normally would put a young individual struggling enough with identity troubles in the spotlight trying to find a single friend to share his (as society would have dictated) strange interest, that is what is new part. One of the joys of technology is that it advances society. The Internet has now played its part in discarding an old mindset and providing us with a new tomorrow, and it's one where everyone can enjoy colorful ponies learning about friendship.

In short: it's the system, not the subset upon which such an anomaly sheds light. As such, the system needs an upgrade. Working off old machinery leads to flaws, one of these flaws is looking at a concept like this in the wrong way. Bronies are here to stay, and those who are too shy, in public, to voice their "unusual" interests will soon find that they are in no way alone, and that's a good thing.

Very good related video: Idea Channel: Bronies -- I'm tickled by how similar our conclusions are, since I saw this a month or two after I wrote this.

{ PLEASE discuss your thoughts and opinions! C: }

Part Two
Part Three
Part Four


Part ? (Final)

Skin by MoongazePonies
  • Mood: Mesmerized
  • Listening to: Greek Fire (among other powerpop)
  • Reading: The Internet
  • Watching: My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
  • Playing: Nothing for a few more days.
  • Eating: Maruchan Yakisoba (Cheddar)
  • Drinking: V8 Fusion (Concord Grape Raspberry)
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:iconzack347:
zack347 Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
:whisper: I though it was funny that one of my RL friends watched the show, and would joke about it.. Later I some how found my self watching 1 episode then all of them... Its not a bad show at all... :iconclapplz:
I feel like such a hypocrite..:iconmingplz:
Reply
:iconbogm0nst3r:
bogm0nst3r Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012
This, my friend, is excellent. I really could not have put it any better myself. I coulnd'nt even have put it as good as this; unfortunately, my regret makes it hard for me to watch the show, but I will continue to read your "Scootaloo's Diary".
Reply
:icontails-155:
Tails-155 Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Regret nothing, the show is online for you to watch on your own time. If you are concerned about judgment, headphones and a computer for you!
Reply
:iconbogm0nst3r:
bogm0nst3r Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012
You been to the chatroom Bronies? Well, months ago, someone who took the time to welcome me back, give me advice (it was only one, but still) and show some concern died. He was a brony, and I never thanked him, or took the time to comment his profile or send him a note during my time I wasn't going to chat. It is this regret that has made it hard for me to watch the show.
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:icontails-155:
Tails-155 Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I see. I'm sure they would have wanted you to enjoy the thing you shared. That is your decision, though.
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:iconbogm0nst3r:
bogm0nst3r Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012
I tried to watch it, but it hurt too much. Even reading the part where Scoolaloo's parent... you know, made me feel all hurt inside. I'm still going to read the diary though. I actually think some of it was pretty funny.
Reply
:iconiescapedthebox:
IEscapedTheBox Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
*slow clap* you dun good bro, you dun good.
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:icontails-155:
Tails-155 Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
XD Thank ya!
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:iconbkenny314:
BKenny314 Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012
Very well said.
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:icontails-155:
Tails-155 Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you! C: It'd been on my mind for a while.
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