The latest rendition of My Little Pony is much different than the previous generations many people associate the name with. The show has a fresh, modern look, and tells fun stories people of all ages can enjoy.
What began as a simple internet meme has transformed into a massive global fanbase. This website was created with the hope that it would answer any questions you may have, as well as help settle any confusion as to what exactly bronies are.
On October 10th, 2010, the first episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic aired. This new generation of My Little Pony was truly a game changer. Lauren Faust, the creator of Friendship is Magic, wanted to steer clear of the poorly written and vapid nature of previous My Little Pony shows. Known for her work on Powerpuff Girls and Fosters Home For Imaginary Friends, she successfully changed the My Little Pony franchise from something that only little girls could watch into something enjoyable by just about any fan of animation in general.
While the show was building hype and preparing to air, the debate of childrens' cartoons being nothing more than toy commercials with no redeeming qualities was raised. No matter what Hasbro's intentions were, the production team behind Friendship is Magic made sure that the cartoon they were producing was indeed of high quality and as a result, the show gained the popularity it has today.
Many users of 4Chan, a popular image board, latched onto the show during this debate. Users began to excitedly post thread after thread of endless pony pictures. At one point, images of ponies had to be banned from the site due to abuse. A number of people rose up against the show expressing hatred toward those who even mention something pony related because of this. To this day there are many who still think poorly of bronies, likely due to the fact that some bronies end up spamming pony related images and references where they are not wanted.
Many believe it was this "anti-pony" movement that made bronies what they are today. The more something is opposed, the higher the supporters must rise up, and rise up they did. Bronies soon began to create their own websites. After seeing so much opposition from 4Chan users, bronies moved on to create PonyChan, an image board just for My Little Pony related content. As the brony community grew and expanded into the rest of the internet, 4Chan later created a brand new board just for ponies and welcomed the community back with open arms. By this time, ponies had already begun to take over the internet. There are many brony-created sites around today ranging from social networks, to media hubs, and blogs.
The show is centered around six main characters known to the fans as the "Mane Six." Each of these ponies have a unique personality, as well as a magical element known as The Elements of Harmony. Together they are able to harness their powers to defeat evil villains and mythical beasts, be it through the sheer power of magic or through more conventional means. When they are not fighting monsters or going on epic quests, they live out their lives in a peaceful and quaint town called Ponyville. They have jobs, homes, friends, and hobbies. This balance of adventure and a friendly small-town feeling gives the show a whole lot of heart, as well as action and adventure.
The show also contains various pop culture references, ranging from James Bond to Slenderman. The show heavily embraces the brony fandom and gives many shout-outs, sometimes subtle and other times in a blatantly obvious fashion. An offical TV spot gives a direct shout-out to bronies by name; further proof that the show is aware of and embraces the fandom. More recently than that, the show celebrated its 100th episode by confirming a number of brony headcanons and directly referencing fandom material.
Bronies are known for their creative works. Art, music, animation, and fan fiction are just a few things bronies create based around their favorite characters or original characters which they create themselves. There is so much brony-created content that much of it actually rivals the show itself. There's full length fan-made episodes, multiple high-quality animations, many crossovers, and even live-action shorts.
Bronies often meet in-person at scheduled meetups and conventions. These meetups can range from a couple bronies watching an episode together to annual worldwide conventions that bring out the the best content creators and fans in the thousands. Bronies also work together to support charities, raising h̶u̶n̶d̶r̶e̶d̶s̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶t̶h̶o̶u̶s̶a̶n̶d̶s over a million dollars through various campaigns.
The brony fandom is dynamic and expansive. Within the fandom there's a sub-community for anyone!
If you're interested in the show itself, the series is available on iTunes, Google Play, and even Netflix. Some episodes have also been uploaded to YouTube by fans, but those are usually promptly taken down. Keep in mind, to fully grasp the show you must see more than just one or two episodes. Any brony will tell you that some are better than others.
Aside from the show itself, there are tons of great brony websites out there ranging from informative sites such as this one to social networks and forums to massive networks covering multiple media formats. Check out the various links above for details, and see links to informative articles below.
Thanks for your interest in Bronydom!
Check out the links at the top of the page for more information, or visit other sites below:
Wikipedia article on the fandom
Geek Professor: Why I Am A Brony
The Herd Outsider's Guide to the Brony Phenomenon
Animation World Network
EQD's Seasons, Nostalgia, and The Fandom:
Part One, Part Two, Part Three
Know Your Meme
Parent of a young brony? - Ponies for Parents
Brony Herd Census