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What would it take for MLP to be more acceptable by the mainstream again?


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I've always wanted see MLP to regain and retain mainstream popularity for wider audiences in the long term. After seeing so amny fan works, I feel that the franchise has so much more potential to be a franchise aimed at all sorts of audiences including older views and fans. I know that the franchise is primiarily intended at young girls, but I would really like to see Hasbro go all out with aiming for general audiences, seeing at how they probably benefited a lot from FiM's success.

I understand that there are many who say that FiM was lightning-a-bottle in its success. But when other franchises like Star Trek (which I see MLP compared to it most in regards to lightning-in-a-bottles sucessses) they still have a lot of popularity in a mainstream, with new content still being produced for it and even having its own extended universe. In contrast MLP FiM, despite its massive influence, doesn't get brought up or referenced a lot in mainstream or internet culture, even compared to other modern cartoons like Gravity Falls or Adventure Time, which get brought up more often even long after they ended. It kind of frustrates me how somewhat niche the brony fandom had somehow become, seeing how much content they create compared to so many other fandoms.

The kind of evolution I would like to see the franchise go would be something like what the Kirby franchise has gone through. Through much of its 30 year history, the Kirby series hasn't had too much mainstream popularity until fairly recently. I even remember on its spin offs, Epic yarn, attracting some hate. However, within the last decade, the franchise has experience a massive growth in its fandom, and despite its cutesy exterior, has become a series with appeal to all sorts of audiences, with lots of background lore call backs to various points in its long history of games, and a good amount of fanservice. That is the kind of thing that I would love to see  MLP to become in the future. If it regains enough popularity again, it just might motivate Hasbro to do something like this, seeing how a wider audience would definitely lead to more financial benefit.

So what do you think it would take for MLP to to not just regain relevance in mainstream and/or internet, but retain it for the long-term, whether its by G5's efforts, the fandom's or by something else?

Edited by guardmaster
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  • The title was changed to What would it take for MLP to be more acceptable by the mainstream again?

Heya! I added just one word to the title of your thread just to make it more clear. 

To be honest, I think with MYM and ANG, they hit a homer. It's the depth that really counts. If the writers could really go deep to show how the issues of today's society can really affect people and the ways we can create change, that is what can really make it more acceptable. We have characters that we can relate to and see how they tackle problems that affect more than just their local community. 

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Question is, what made FiM so popular in the first place?

Think about that for a moment, and then ask if it was for the right reasons? Some things never regain popularity after the bubble breaks. Look at Internet, its bubble broke back in 1999, and it never became the same thing again. Yes, it is true that Internet was once as hot as FiM was.

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I'm not sure if "acceptable" is the choice of words I would use, I think you mean "popularly recieved". It's very accepted by mainstream culture and has been for quite some time... FiM was unique for it's animation style and cast of original personalities....Equestria exists as a universe that, yeah you "could" introduce aspects to the universe relative to the likes of Warhammer or Lord of the Rings, but that would deviate from it's intended audience to greatly to take risks on an idea that wasn't what sold the show to adult fans of FiM to begin with... like I said before some bronies are the most selfish creatures alive in regards to creative content and how they believe it should be handled by it's writers, "the show just lost it's charm after the first two seasons" insinuating that bronies prefer stories intended for young girls, and the bronies complained greatly toward the end of the show when the writers for FiM fan services for bronies to greatly, it's like they want a show that's not written for them but with the intention of it being written for them, it's kind of silly, and Hasbro knows that children are their bread and butter when it comes to shameless merchandising, bronies spend their money predominantly within the fandom and less on Hasbro products, they are currently publicly sharing MyM pirated on the internet for free xD Hasbro isn't going to abandon their fan base of children that abundantly dwarfs the overly expectant adult community .. like I said before, bronies didn't "save MLP", FiM would have been a success with or without them, they just turned it into a cultural phenomenon because of internet prominence, but Hasbro doesn't benefit from this community in large, the people within the community do... Im on FB groups and a lot of serious fans are going hard for gen.5 just really depends where you look, there is a g.4 purist phenomenon going on in many places that is ultimately bad for the franchise any way you spell it out, I mean some whiny over expectant bronies tricking themselves with their own nostalgia that think their hipster vision is gonna make or break the franchise isn't true in either case, but it does seperate people "within the MLP fan base" from coming together and collectively enjoying the franchise "as a whole", they dont need to be a part of that "toxic community" in the eyes of new fans, or younger fans, I don't think it will ever be like it was during 2012-2017, that was the brony peak and decline and I feel bad for whatever bronies missed it, but the success of the franchise isn't determined by what some cynical internet dwelling adult men say online, it's proven through how the most merchandise and collectables can be sold at a fixed budget, I don't think Hasbro will ever go all in on indulging this community ever again after the ungrateful backlash of seasons 7-9, we just have to wait for something new with authentic charm and originality to spawn from a franchise intended for younger viewers, just as the original seasons of FiM once did, we shall see how true the newer and younger fans of gen.5 stay to this fandom after a couple years, there may be new fandom goers on their way just need a little time to tell...

 

Edited by Spook Conundrum
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I still get tons of compliments on my Maud Pie shirt. :nom: A lot more stuff is more acceptable by the mainstream now, including MLP still, it's just that the mass amount of hype surrounding the franchise is something I doubt will happen again regardless of how hard the series tries because some things just never recapture the level of popularity they once had.

As for how hard the fandom tries, most of the projects they produce mostly attract people who are already in the fandom. And while bronies do help Hasbro financially by buying their products and spreading the word about the franchise more, doing more good for the franchise than harm through complaints and pirated videos (most people don't care about MLP fan complaints and MLP: ANG was still a massive success on Netflix despite piracy), success for the franchise still mostly comes down to Hasbro's marketing, not what the fandom is doing.  

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4 minutes ago, CloudMistDragon said:

I still get tons of compliments on my Maud Pie shirt. :nom: A lot more stuff is more acceptable by the mainstream now, including MLP still, it's just that the mass amount of hype surrounding the franchise is something I doubt will happen again regardless of how hard the series tries because some things just never recapture the level of popularity they once had.

As for how hard the fandom tries, most of the projects they produce mostly attract people who are already in the fandom. And while bronies do help Hasbro financially by buying their products and spreading the word about the franchise more, doing more good for the franchise than harm through complaints and pirated videos (most people don't care about MLP fan complaints and MLP: ANG was still a massive success on Netflix despite piracy), success for the franchise still mostly comes down to Hasbro's marketing, not what the fandom is doing.  

When OP makes a statement about "MLP being accepted" by the mainstream, that's different than saying "will bronies ever be accepted by the mainstream" bc if you watch videos like the one TurkeyTom just made a few weeks ago you would know there are some people with misconceptions that will demonize this fandom for clout at any turn they can, MLP ITSELF, has been a mainstream phenomena since the 80s its why we even got FiM to begin with, have to remind some bronies that Faust didn't create the franchise... 

I'm not saying bronies are a "determent to the franchise", largely most of them are positive for it, but more or less I am saying that they don't make a dent in the merchandise purchased by young children and primarily young girls, from everything from plushies to activity books, to themed napkins, cups, etc literally at every corner there's a place to showcase ponies to little girls walking around a Walmart with their mother... a lot of bronies are merchandise snobs(myself included) ultimately yes bronies are a walking advertisement for my little pony, but like I was just saying about TurkeyTom sometimes unfortunately and indirectly a deterrent at the very least from our own fandom, mom's don't want their kids looking at NFSW furry porn bc their kid wanted to discuss MLP... Its unfortunate but true...

But yes Hasbro's success will come from commercial value, they'll always welcome bronies to their herd, but I think the glory days of shameless fan service are far behind us

 

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3 hours ago, Spook Conundrum said:

When OP makes a statement about "MLP being accepted" by the mainstream, that's different than saying "will bronies ever be accepted by the mainstream" bc if you watch videos like the one TurkeyTom just made a few weeks ago you would know there are some people with misconceptions that will demonize this fandom for clout at any turn they can, MLP ITSELF, has been a mainstream phenomena since the 80s its why we even got FiM to begin with, have to remind some bronies that Faust didn't create the franchise... 

I'm not saying bronies are a "determent to the franchise", largely most of them are positive for it, but more or less I am saying that they don't make a dent in the merchandise purchased by young children and primarily young girls, from everything from plushies to activity books, to themed napkins, cups, etc literally at every corner there's a place to showcase ponies to little girls walking around a Walmart with their mother... a lot of bronies are merchandise snobs(myself included) ultimately yes bronies are a walking advertisement for my little pony, but like I was just saying about TurkeyTom sometimes unfortunately and indirectly a deterrent at the very least from our own fandom, mom's don't want their kids looking at NFSW furry porn bc their kid wanted to discuss MLP... Its unfortunate but true...

But yes Hasbro's success will come from commercial value, they'll always welcome bronies to their herd, but I think the glory days of shameless fan service are far behind us

 

I do know he's talking about MLP's popularity and not bronies being accepted, thus why I made the comment I did on MLP's hype and popularity. And bah, I don't care for that Turkey Tom guy. People like him try to frame narratives for clout like you said, but I prefer to just not give people like him attention. I also know you don't mean that bronies are a curse on the franchise or something even as some of them do engage in some awful behavior, I was just voicing my thoughts on what the OP was saying about the fandom's potential role. 

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They could start by doing a better follow-up to FiM that captures the essence of what made it so special while simultaneously doing something new and different (preferably while also not having any direct ties to any previous series).  I'm somehow doubting we will be getting that until at least G6 though.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Here's an idea I do have: make the show easily accessible via streaming services.

I feel like Hasbro is doing awfully sloppy job with Friendship is Magic. It's hard to come by on streaming services, in Poland You can buy it on Amazon Prime, but cannot watch it, which is a lovely feeling. Thank You, Hasbro and Amazon, very cool. It needs to be released worldwide on a specific, easily accessible streaming website, be it said Amazon Prime or Netflix (which would be the best idea, given gen 5 is also there).

When I wanted to rewatch the show I had to... download it from... places. I think everyone knows what I mean. Do I feel good about it? No. But I was given literally no choice as there was no other, clear alternative. That hardly encourages people to rewatch it or to be introduced to it. People, who took interest in gen 5 could've easily been pulled into gen 4 and that chance is wasted epicly. 

 

Now mind You, I speak from polish perspective - I am pretty sure access is better in USA. But there are a lot of fans in Europe that are effectively barred from easy access to the show. This kind of business decisions can damage just about any show's popularity.

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FiM was the perfect storm. Good, expressive character designs, good music, well written, a reputable creator at the helm. While G5 is not quite there, it definitely has potential, the ingredients are there

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