Seemingly overnight my Twitter feed looked like it had been taken over by small girls. I knew something was up. Not only because I’m legally prohibited from befriending young girls on the Internet, but also because in between the squeals of delight over a cartoon about horses, there was still the normal, mundane tweets of a men in their 30s.
I know a lot of Bronies, and I don’t know how. But as any good journalist who has long since given up and just occasionally updates a blog, I decided to sleuth it out. I talked to Bronies who run podcasts, Bronies who draw art, Bronies with boyfriends, and even Bronies who have girlfriends. The whole time I compiled theories on what the cause of all this was. How do you explain the Bronies? I’m not sure you can. But I’m going to try, and as always I’ll do it as tactfully as I can.
There Goes the Neigh-borhood
It’s a little known fact and widely known conspiracy theory that we are being fed subliminal messages through our televisions. While some believe we’re being ordered to kill government officials, most think (and have shown in some cases), that we’re simply being told to buy more stuff. Why have one commercial when you can have two? So you have My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, a show that on the surface is aimed at young girls. But underneath the giggles and the slapstick is a feed, designed to draw in an older demographic. After all, it’s beneficial to get parents into the show, so that they’ll buy more merchandise. Only something went wrong, and instead of triggering a response in parents, it mostly attracts single males in their 20s (and gay men in their 30s to 40s). It explains why nobody can pinpoint what they like about the show. It explains why those who just watch it on YouTube are less affected. It even explains why Hasbro has such shitty My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic merchandise. Who needs quality when you’re compelled to swarm a Toys R Us in a 20 person pack and buy everything you see?
Foals, Fillies, and Cults
There’s a large sense of conversion among Bronies, that some say borders on cultish behavior. Those people are stupid, but there is something there with the Bronies. It’s possibly that being a Brony is actually a form of cult, one that you have to join and rank up in to fully understand, much like Scientology. The reason so many Bronies can’t tell you why they love the show so much is because they’re not authorized to explain to non-believers the secret messages of My Little Pony. The Bronies aren’t trying to bring you into the fold (herd?) because “friendship is magic”, they’re trying to get you to watch because recruiting new Bronies is the only way for them to rank up and get closer to the Divine, whom I assume is the spirit incarnation of Rainbow Dash.
My Little Dalai Lama
The Internet has made our generation a bunch of assholes. We no longer have the ability to enjoy anything unless we’re tearing it down, and even then we don’t take any joy out if it. So perhaps Bronies, these Bohemians of the Internet, have finally figured out how to genuinely like something, without irony or sarcasm. How the hell did they manage that? Did they just, as a group, decide to like it. You know like how your mom used to always say “Choose to be happy” when you were crying at Disneyland? Only this time it worked and now they just unabashedly like something! If this is true, then Bronies are closer to enlightenment than any of the rest of us. Which kind of makes you want to hate them even more, right?
This Shit Don’t Make No Horse Sense, But That’s OK
Or maybe it’s just one of the many slightly odd but interesting things people do that make them, well, interesting. We like to poke fun at the Bronies, but are they any weirder than groups of men who like to swim in frigid waters? Or convention attendees that create elaborate steampunk cosplay? Or the middle aged women who follow Weird Al Yankovic on his concert tours (hi mom)? No. Granted, I make fun of all those people, too, but they’re cool in my book. And really so are the Bronies. The show is solid, and even if it’s not your thing there’s definitely an appeal in some quality SatAm cartoons. Just go for it, Bronies, who gives a shit why they do what they do? It’s not like they’re getting off on all this.
Wait, I just searched My Little Pony on FurAffinity. Rule 34 Vore. Really, guys?!