How to Tell People You’re a Brony
The word brony, a blending of the words “bro” and “pony” is a term used to describe males (generally not children) who are fans of the My Little Pony franchise. And because the brand has a long history of catering to a young, female demographic, it can be hard for men past the age of adolescence to explain why they are interested in MLP. Like any kind of niche interest, there are going to be a lot of people who make assumptions, completely misunderstanding the motivations behind the fandom. But there are ways you can let people know you’re a brony and help them to understand what that means and why it is so much fun.
The Brony Bunch
Fans and collectors tend to be a widely misunderstood bunch. Whether they’re saving stamps, polishing coins, bagging and boarding comics, or placing sports figurines on shelves throughout the house, “regular” folks are often baffled by the collector mentality. And the plight of a brony is no different, although it is potentially made more difficult to understand by the preconceived notions the general public has about MLP as a brand. It wasn’t until recently that My Little Pony became a franchise catering to multiple demographics; many people still think of it as a product for little girls.
But the current TV show has taken a decided departure from the first three generations of the brand – ‘My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic‘ strives to break down the gender stereotypes associated with the franchise, bringing in a diverse audience through intelligent, thoughtful, and relevant content that appeals to a variety of people from different genders, age groups, cultures, and so on. And the growth of fan contributions in the way of merchandise and media has made MLP a creative outlet for girls, boys, women, and men seeking a fun and imaginative hobby.
Of course, you already know this. How do you make your family and friends understand what it means to be a brony, or a male participating in the MLP culture? The place to begin is by explaining that MLP has undergone a transformation from the children’s toys of old. It is now a brand that features anime-like programming featuring smart dialogue and exhibiting positive social values, as opposed to the kid-centric shows of old. In addition, the collectible and custom creation aspects of the revamped brand have allowed fans to participate with the franchise in innovative ways, contributing to the creation process and in a sense, making the brand what it is. And if people still don’t understand, allow them to escape with you into the colorful world of MLP by watching a few episodes of ‘My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic‘ or decorating their own custom pony.