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Did the original mlp cartoon have its own bronies back then?

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Back in the 1980's, did g1 mlp have a fan community outside of its targeted demographic similar to modern bronies, but since there was no internet, it didnt catch on?

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Surely there were some, but to my knowledge, not enough to consider it a community. I believe most MLP fans outside the target demographic before G4 were more into collecting the toys than watching the cartoons. :)

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(edited)

I guarantee there were dudes, but I am sure it wasn't a community, mainly for lack of internet back then

Edited by Steve Piranha
Forgot a "were"

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Yes. Though there are a lot of caveats on that. I have vague memories of a BBS in the late 90's dedicated to Hasbro cartoons, which was primarily G.I. Joe and Transformers, but had it's MLP adherents. On the original 'My Little Pony n' Friends' in the 80's, that's a lot trickier to track as the community would have been supported by snailmail Fanzines. Unless someone here just happens to have kept them, most Fanzines from that time period are gone forever. I still have a couple of Star Trek and Doctor Who ones stashed away somewhere, but nothing around any of Hasbro's properties.

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(edited)
On 8/7/2018 at 7:55 AM, Steve Piranha said:

I guarantee there dudes, but I am sure it wasn't a community, mainly for lack of internet back then

Yep... I was thinking this about a few of the shows I was watching that gave me the same feeling as G4, though the original MLP really didn't do it. There was Care Bears, Rainbow Brite, Fraggle Rock... a decade later when the internet rose there were a couple of fansites that sprung up and garnered a following that seemed impressively strong at the time. ALMOST enough to start forming gatherings.

Internet was key to changing the rules surrounding this, along with some major social progress tearing down gender norms to make it safer for men to show interest (1980's, girly = gay = you got yourself assaulted by homophobes for having a Strawberry Shortcake backpack). Back then any male fan pretty much felt like they were the only one in the whole universe. Also remember though that FiM was written in a way that ignored feminine vs. masculine (unlike G1), which had the side-effect of pulling more men into it.

Edited by bornAgainEquestrian

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I also think there was a brony presence then, but they had no way to link up without the frightening power of the Internet. 

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There was...you get those toy collectors/enthusiasts...at any age really... I was in a MLP group. Tbh, I don't recall much. :adorkable:

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(edited)

As far as I know... yes and no.

The modern Brony fanbase primarily exists because of the internet. Back in the 1980s, the My Little Pony franchise began as a toy line with a cartoon on the side in order to help promote the toys. Back then, there were male fans... as@PinkiePie97's post states... but they would've been few and far between. At the time, it was not socially acceptable for a male to watch a "girly" cartoon.

Fast forward to late 2010, when Friendship is Magic began. Perhaps the first "bronies" were 4chan users who turned the show into a meme. At some point, people outside the show's target demographic began to take notice of the increasing pony content, and thus they began to watch the show themselves. Some of these folks were indeed "legacy" fans who had watched the original MLP cartoons. But the fanbase didn't become a force to be reckoned with on the internet until long after G1 was gone. You can probably blame some 90s and 2000s shows like the Powerpuff Girls for making it more socially acceptable for a male to watch a girls' cartoon. Add to that shows like the live-action Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Japanese anime Sailor Moon (which exploded in popularity among young males and females in the 90s), and you had some new territory in the world of female-targeted entertainment just aching to be conquered by guys who weren't afraid to forge a new path.

Edited by Prospekt

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(edited)

Not just lack of internet but also gender social expectation as well. MLP before G4 is heavily weighted for little girls. While there are some guys or older people  end up liking it anyway are embarrassed to admit it back then. 

Edited by TBD

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Well, there's me. I enjoyed the G1 pony animated series. Of course, there were enough cool villains to justify it.

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(edited)

There was not internet back then. Yeah, I know. Some of us grew up in the dark ages before computers had color graphics and before there were cell phones. Back then, there was a greater stigmatization about gender roles and what you could and couldn't like. Boys played with GI Joe and Transformers while girls played with My Little Pony and Barbie. That's how it was.

Edited by Twilight Luna

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(edited)
13 hours ago, Twilight Luna said:

There was not internet back then. Yeah, I know. Some of us grew up in the dark ages before computers had color graphics and there were cell phones. Back then, there was a greater stigmatization about gender roles and what you could and couldn't like. Boys played with GI Joe and Transformers while girls played with My Little Pony and Barbie. That's how it was.

I don't know, I seem to remember plenty of times my cousins or friends were playing with each others toys, both male and female. I think sometimes how it seemed was not always the reality.

Edited by KarentheUnicorn

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I don't know about th cartoon (did it even air in the UK?) but I'm pretty sure it was my male cousin certain long-lost tapes and storybooks belonged to.

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I do not recall any media talking about boys liking mlp, or older men, so would go with a no to that question.

 

Even with internet, it took maybe a decade plus a few years before we started seeing signs of bronies. G4 had the effect that it was new, and closer to anime. It had an attraction that the older shows (which were completely outdated in their morals, etc). So again, a no to that question.

 

However, did boys play with mlp toys in those days? Yes, they did! Especially when there was a sister in the family having the girl toys, either wanting to play with someone, or the toys happened to be interesting in some way. I was forced to play with mlp a few times as a child, with my "fake" sister (from one of my dad's girlfriends' side of the family). It didn't make me like mlp because I was forced to play, but I didn't dislike it either.
Today when you see huge groups of collectors for G1, it has all to do with nostalgia and keeping one's childhood alive. I wouldn't confuse modern bronies collecting G1 (like myself) with being a brony or something "special" back in the days G1 was the only mlp toys around.

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