In one episode where Twilight sees her own future self, she was wearing a bandana, an eye-patch and a worn-out skintight suit. Tara Strong voice-acted as Elisa and Ursula from Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops and Paz from Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. Both of those games' main protagonists were Naked Snake (Aka Big Boss) who also has a bandana and an eye-patch.
With the reveal of the cast of Tantei Opera Milky Holmes voicing the Japanese dub of FiM, it's been noted that not only some of the characters but even their color coding has been adhered to (Rarity shares Hercule's hair color, and Nero and Sherlock are quite similar to Applejack and Pinkie Pie respectively).
In the episode "Simple Ways" Rarity has a crush on Trenderhoof and tries to change herself to impress him. In The LittlestPetShop episode "Sweet Pepper" Pepper has a crush on a Polecat and also tries to change herself to impress him, both Rarity and Pepper are voiced by Tabitha St. Germain and both episodes aired the exact same week.
In the Italian dub, Fluttershy is voiced by the actress for Cure Pine, who is also shy, kind, soft spoken, and loves animals.
Throughout Seasons 1-3, Sweetie Belle's singing voice is provided by Michelle Creber, who speaks and sings for Apple Bloom. This makes Sweetie Belle's version of "Fluttershy's Lullaby" all the more awesome when you learn that Michelle was 10 when she sang it.note It becomes obvious it's Michelle in that song once you notice Sweetie Belle sings with a noticeable twang. She fixes that by the Hearts and Hooves Day song, though.
In "Sleepless In Ponyville", Claire Corlettdoes Sweetie's singing herself, taking Cute but Cacophonic far beyond 11 and into ranges that were previously just theoretical. The trope is averted as of the Season 4 episode "Flight to the Finish"; Claire has taken over Sweetie's singing full-time and is doing an excellent job of it.
And Pinkie Pie's singing voice is Shannon Chan-Kent. Andrea Libman, however, voices Fluttershy for both her speaking AND singing parts. The explanation is that Daniel Ingram had Shannon, a friend of his, do some of the original demos (including the main theme) and Hasbro liked her Pinkie voice so much they insisted on keeping her as the singing voice.
Also, Twilight Sparkle's singing voice is Rebecca Shoichet, and Rarity's singing voice is Kazumi Evans. Not that Tara Strong and Tabitha St. Germaincan't sing – they've both performed some singing roles in other shows in the past. For Tara Strong at least, this is due to her recording her lines separately (she’s based in a completely different country after all), and the ensemble songs require the actresses to be recorded together.
Background ponies generally have different voices from episode to episode, even when they're consistently named (as with Rose, who's been addressed by name in "Bridle Gossip" and "A Friend in Deed"). These voice changes have been especially noticeable in the case of Sweetie Drops/Bon Bon; her five speaking parts so far generally sound completely different from each other.
With the exceptions of the Gameloft app, The Hub's commercials for the show itself, and the app's trailer, anything outside of the show that requires voice acting (toy commercials, talking toys, the live show, etc.) and isn't using audio ripped from the show itself doesn't use the original voice actors. Tara Strong has said she'd be more than willing to voice any and all Twilight Sparkle toys, seeing as she's voiced toys before.
Princess Luna in the Japanese dub was voiced by Yumi Uchiyama in the second episode but was voiced by Takako Honda, the voice of Nightmare Moon, in "Luna Eclipsed".
In the Italian dub, Spitfire haves three different voice actresses: Debora Morese (Princess Luna and Diamond Tiara) voiced her in "Sonic Rainboom" and "The Best Night Ever", Gea Riva (Silver Spoon, Derpy and Daring Do) took the role in "Hurricane Fluttershy" and Tania De Domenico (Spike) is her current voice since "Wonderbolts Academy".
Here, Michelle Creber plays the main child character while Madeleine Peters (Scootaloo) plays her tomboy best friend. On Martha Speaks, Peters plays the main child character and Creber is the tomboy friend. They also happen to be good friends in Real Life.
Invoked with the Japanese release, as five of the voice actors from Tantei Opera Milky Holmes voice five of the mane six. Also, the voice of the main antagonist from that show voices Little Strongheart.
Shining Armor and Cadance are Setsuna F. Seisei and Feldt Grace in Mobile Suit Gundam 00, who also happen to be romantically involved with each other.
Twilight Sparkle and Princess Cadance are respectively voiced by the actresses for the characters Drei and Ein from the anime adaptation of the visual novel Phantom of Inferno as well as its remake; two young women who were both trained as assassins and nearly wind up killing each other, which is amusing in itself since it's the complete polar opposite of Cadance's relationship with Twilight.
Andrea Libman pulls double duty as Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie. (How's THAT for acting range?) It's particularly evident when Fluttershy starts cheering towards the end of "Sonic Rainboom" and sounds nearly identical to Pinkie. She also voices Pumpkin Cake, making "Baby Cakes" full of this.
Andrea has proved that she is capable of easily switching between the two voices on the fly. Pinkie-voice apparently gives the other actors a headache.
Ashleigh Ball voices both Applejack and Rainbow Dash. Now go watch "Fall Weather Friends" again, and marvel.* Ashleigh has talked about how weird it was to be challenging herself to a race. She also spends a fair amount of time with the RD/AJ bickering during "Castle mane-ia".
Unlike Andrea, Ashleigh (being a professional singer), does sing both her characters' parts. At one point near the beginning of the "Winter Wrap-Up" number, you can hear her switch from singing as AJ to Rainbow Dash mid-line.
Tabitha St. Germain voices Rarity, Princess Luna/Nightmare Moon, Granny Smith, Rarity's mom, Mrs. Cup Cake, Pound Cake, Photo Finish, (in the original version, at least) Derpy Hooves, but the only pairs of these characters who've had on-screen, two-way conversations are Rarity with Photo Finish and Rarity with her mom.
Word of God confirms that Tabitha also performs Twilight Sparkle during the studio recordings in Vancouver (Tara Strong, based 2000 miles and an international border away, overdubs her part later), demonstrated by this behind the scenes video. In other words, Tabitha probably talks to herself more than any other actress on the show!
In various interviews and con panels the VAs have stated that, while Tabitha does it most often on average, Twilight's part is generally read by whoever has the least lines in the current scene (such as "Eeeyup"). Since the whole point of reading the part at all is for the other actors to have something to play off, whoever is having an extended conversation with Twilight would not be the one reading her lines.
This gets subverted in "Luna Eclipsed", Luna doesn't talk to the other Tabitha characters and Rarity's scene was cut for timenote And again, Tabitha does Twilight's scratch track (Tara Strong records separately later), who spends most of the episode talking to Luna. It must have been a fun day at the studio for her.
Michelle Creber voices Apple Bloom and does Sweetie Belle's singing. The two of them talk to each other as part of the song in "Hearts and Hooves Day".note Although given the technicalities of that song – Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom sing in unison several times – Michelle probably was not ever switching voices on the fly.
You'd think this wouldn't happen with Tara Strong since she only voices one character. It happens quite literally in "Its About Time" when Twilight talks to her future self.
There's also one of the best songs in the show, "This Day Aria", which is Cadance singing with Chrysalis, who's disguised as Cadance herself.
What Could Have Been: From various interviews we've learn the cast setup could have been just a little different...
According to Lauren, she initially wanted Tara Strong to voice Pinkie Pie, and Tara wanted to voice her with a Bubbles-esque voice.
Kathleen Barr, the voice of Trixie and Queen Chrysalis, apparently did a "very good" audition for Celestia.
Ashleigh Ball had auditioned for Spike, and thought she got the role as she got a phone call back for it.
Woman of a Thousand Voices: Tabitha St. Germain is essentially the Billy West of the show. Again she voices Rarity, Princess Luna/Nightmare Moon, Granny Smith, Rarity's mom, Mrs. Cup Cake, Pound Cake, Photo Finish, Derpy Hooves (in the original version, at least), and multiple other background ponies. Even her co-workers often mention in interviews how blown away they are at Tabitha's talent. Tabitha herself was very surprised to hear that her co-workers had such praise for her.
Asami Yoshida and Yumi Uchiyama are essentially the Japanese equivalents of Tabitha as they provide the majority of the voices of supporting and background characters in the Japanese dub.
Suzuko Mimori also displays a distinct range of voices when voicing Pinkie's "party guests" in "Party of One".
Staff and Production
Bad Export for You: The McDonald's Happy Meals toys in Malaysia. For whatever brain-dead reason, Fluttershy, Rarity, Applejack and Princess Celestia are not available in the country. Since the show is not available in the country because no Pay TV provider carries Boomerang (Cartoon Network Southeast Asia now also carry FIM, though), McDonald's and Hasbro probably thought they could get away with this, made even worse that Boomerang was replaced by Toonami later on...
Some of the dubs, from the previews of episode 3 (different from the actual broadcast version) seen so far, seem to be of the low-to-no-budget variety. The Canadian French demo (now gone from official site) is probably the worst.
To be fair, Corus Entertainment (owner of Treehouse and YTV, and now a full-owner of Teletoon) bought FIM from HasbroStudios, not directly from either what was StudioBProductions nor the studio's owner DHXMedia. Other animated shows from HasbroStudios are broadcast on Corus' channels. (Transformers Prime was on Teletoon, then half-owned by Corus at the time of Canadian premiere.)
Anyone know what's going on Yoopa (which airs Canadian French version of the show)? One is sure that it's not the same voice cast as the demo dub.
Now there's reports going around that Boomerang's airings of the show in some regions are incomplete, bringing in only half of each season.
MLP has always been popular in Europe, but that didn't translate to the UK. Despite having no language barrier and a sizable fanbase, they got Season 1 and nothing else.
Oddly, there's still tons of merchandise coming out in the UK despite the show not airing there anymore. This includes merch for Princess Cadance and Princess Twilight.
It's still airing in the UK, just not on TV. In the UK it's airing exclusively on BinWeevils.com, a gaming site for children.
Season 3 is now airing in the UK on Tiny Pop.
Japanese fans who started out watching fansubs of the English version of the series are disappointed that the Japanese dub is cut for time (see Edited for Syndication below), about some translation decisions like Zecora not speaking in rhyme, and that while some songs are dubbed into Japanese, others (such as "Winter Wrap Up", "Art of the Dress", "Becoming Popular" and "Love is in Bloom") are left in English with Japanese subtitles.
Banned in China: So far, 8 episodes have been skipped in Turkey due to the country's conservative Muslim standards. Notably this affects most episodes featuring celebrations comparable to real-life religiously-influenced holidays.
Some episodes have been censored as well. This most notably removes pretty much every instance of one character having a crush on another. Hilariously, Spike's secret crush in "Green Isn't Your Color" was changed to him noticing that "Rarity put on weight."(!)
This also happens with the version broadcast on Cartoon Network Arabic.
The Italian dub skips "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000" because it could encourage kids to drink alcoholic beverages. Albeit the Italian dub director confirmed the episode itself was entirely dubbed, but will be released only on DVD. Similarly, every scene in "Bats!" where Rainbow Dash freaks for the lack of cider was removed in the Italian TV airing, but will probably be restored in the DVD release.
From "The Ticket Master", a scene of Big McIntosh reacting to and pulling the new plow during Applejack's Imagine Spot (seen in a since removed video from one of the show's animators) and a scene featuring Mr. Greenhooves (mentioned by the show's art director).
From "The Return of Harmony Part 1", Applejack saying "Hope everything's ok back in Ponyville. I don't know if Big McIntosh and Granny Smith have enough butter for all that popcorn" (revealedanddetailed by the episode's writer M.A. Larson), Rainbow Dash saying "Get off that cloud and put 'em up! I'm not afraid of you! Come on, Marquess of Queensbury rules! Let's go!" instead of "Get off there and put 'em up! Come on! Let's go!" (revealed by the episode's writer M.A. Larson) and from either that episode or "The Return of Harmony Part 2", Applejack saying "While y'all were gone a pod of whales flew in and handed us the elements" (revealed by the episodes' writer M.A. Larson).
Rainbow Dash's 'Marquess of Queensbury rules' line would have been significant as an allusion to Q, who used the same line to goad Commander Sisko in an episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
From "Magic Duel", a few layout scenes (mentioned by layout artist Holly Giesbrecht) and a scene of Trixie interacting with Mayor Mare (revealed by the episode's writer M.A. Larson).
Development Gag: Discord's name was originally going to be used for Nightmare Moon.
Edited for Syndication: The Japanese dub unfortunately has to cut out a few scenes in order to make room for the longer intro and outro, as well as a locally-made live-action segment presented by Suzuko Mimori, leaving some scenes a bit out of place out of nowhere. It remains to be seen if any future DVD releases will restore these scenes, not having to worry about ad blocks.
Executive Meddling: Lauren Faust has said that Hasbro's management of the show has generally been fairly easy-going, and she's been allowed a lot more freedom than she expected, with some exceptions:
Faust would have preferred to do a series with an overarching storyline but Hasbro wanted the episodes to be viewable in any order.
On the other hand, Faust says "a lot of fans now seem to think that I had a grand scheme for a big, dramatic, serialized magical-girl style of a show. Actually, it was always my intention to have the show partially 'adventure stories' and partially 'relationship stories,' as I called them in my initial pitch bible."
There weren't quite as many adventure stories in the first season as planned, but that was more budget restraints than Hasbro outright dictating it.
Hasbro requested the inclusion of specific characters, though notably not how to use them – only that they be in the show in some form. This is why Cheerilee became a teacher and got Happy Meal toys as part of the McDonald's promotions.
This also seems to apply to Shining Armor and Cadance, though in that case the wedding was also mandated.
Judging by the blog post linked in YMMV under Complaining About Shows You Don't Watch, she would have preferred to add a few more guy ponies for a better-rounded society.
Rarity's fashion focus came about due to Hasbro mandating that at least one of the mane cast had to be a fashion pony.
After her speaking role in "The Last Roundup" brought her to full Ascended Meme status, it would appear that poor Derpy Hooves got hammered by this trope rather hard; the episode now has a new version that has been edited to change her voice, (mostly) "fix" her eyes, and remove reference to her name.
Because the above censorship row happened while episodes 53-65 were in production, Derpy has only a few appearances in Season 3. She's still in the intro, though, and also appeared in the finale 5 times.
In Pinkie's book, a certain grey pegasus is depicted as a mailmare. Pinkie can't quite remember her name though...the books actually have a lot of these in them.
Genius Bonus: "This Day Aria" ends on as a "deceptive cadence", which is a stealth pun considering it's a duet between Princess Cadence and the shapeshifter posing as her.
God Does Not Own This World: Lauren Faust, despite being the main creative force, has neither absolute control nor ownership of the franchise. This is punctuated by the fact that she demoted herself to consultant producer for Season 2, and then left the show entirely.
God Never Said That: Lauren Faust and company have been misquoted or misunderstood a few times. For example, it's a common belief that the show was pitched as much more Magical Girl adventure style but Hasbro demanded a more Slice of Life format. This isn't true, as Lauren has stated that she planned to have a mix of adventure and Slice of Life from the beginning. The reason why there aren't more adventure episodes is because they're harder to produce on a tight schedule while still being enjoyable.
Keep It Foreign: Unlike what happened with the original My Little Pony series, the foreign versions of the show keeps the original MLP logo in English, with only the Friendship is Magic subtitle translated into the local language, possibly due to Hasbro's request, regardless if the viewers, especially the younger ones, can pronounce the name of the show or not.
There's a good justification for that: In some languages like Spanish, for putting a good example, the name of the franchise was translated as Mi Pequeño Pony. The problem here is, Mi Pequeño Pony refers to a male pony, and since all the main cast is female, and since Spanish doesn't have gender-neutral versions for the same name, maybe Hasbro decided to use the original English name not only in Spanish but in many other languages too.
Also happens in the Japanese version, but dealing with the honorific titles: Princess Celestia (and Luna) are addressed in Japanese with their English title "Princess" (プリンセス) rather than "Hime" (姫) or "Queen" (Jou'ou/女王), since in Japanese culture, a princess is rarely portrayed as a ruler, compared with a queen. But, since Hasbro is possibly forcing the Japanese translators to keep the "Princess" title despite this cultural tidbit, maybe they decided to use the English title as a compromise, though it's worth noting that the Japanese website refers to her as "女王・プリンセスセレスティア" (Jouou Princess Celestia, literally "Queen Princess Celestia", with the Princess title as part of her name in Japanese).
A layout artist commonly going by "Nayuki" posts on the Allspark Forums, offering several bits of behind the scenes trivia. He's also the one who drew the San Diego Comic Con 2011 Pony Poster, which contained all the shout outs to fans and fanon.
Also, Friendship is Magic is actually the firstMy Little Pony show to be aired in Japan. Note that there was no My Little Pony Japanese dub before Friendship is Magic.
Meme Acknowledgment: Quite a lot of them, which is fitting given the show's extremely fan-friendly status.
This season 2 promo acknowledged the fan terms "brony" (term for fans of the show, usually defined as the older male ones) and "DJ Pon-3" (for the DJ pony seen in "Suited for Success").
May 30, 2012 saw the announcement of a special edition toy for Comic-con. The toy packaging is nameless, but contains a gray pegasus pony with blond hair, bubbles cutie mark, and yellow walled-eyes. The package is complete with muffins on the box art.
WeLoveFine's officially licensed My Little Pony line of shirts is at least half ascended memes.
Also inverted in a way: Ghost of True Capitalist Radio would often describe himself as "Melting Pot of Friendship" to deflect accusations of racism. He also hates the show and its fandom. So a "fan" recorded Tara Strong saying in her Twilight Sparkle voice that she's a Melting Pot of Friendship. Ghost took it well.
A DVD box set featured a "Now 20% cooler!" sticker.
In "Pinkie Apple Pie", Apple Bloom does her version of Tara Strong's Ponylicious rap.
At BABSCon 2014 Peter New, the voice of Big Macintosh, made brony headlines by cosplaying Princess Big Mac.
Which also got a shout-out in the book series, in Applejack's story: the CMC were having a "Princess tea party" where they dress up as the four princesses of Equestria but they didn't have a Cadence so they got Big Mac to play with them. He's wearing a fake horn and wings when he finally comes in for dinner.
Newbie Boom: This happened in spades to the original My Little Pony fandom when My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic started to air. Previously, the fandom was a haven for mostly females (not that male fans didn't exist though) who loved the toys and fondly remembered the G1 cartoons. Then when Friendship is Magic was introduced, the previous fandom was swamped by a huge influx of new, mostly male fans (dubbed "bronies"). Nowadays older fans have a tough time keeping their own pocket fandom afloat as G4 has utterly eclipsed the rest of the franchise into obscurity. Similarly, the brony fandom itself experienced a boom around Season 2, when the initial shock of "boys likinggirl things" wore off for the most part and people began to check it out for the sake of the show itself.
As for DVDs, Edel Germany GmbH, InnoForm Media, and Madman Entertainment have released or are releasing Season 1 (and in Madman's case, Season 2) in their respective countries, Edel having released episodes 4-6 with only the German dub, InnoForm's DVDs putting the episodes Out of Order, and InnoForm & Madman's DVDs respectively being locked to Regions 3 & 4. However, aside from those, only "The Ticket Master" has been widely released (in some countries, only through limited-time promotions) on DVD outside the US (one or more countries have received multiple episodes), and those dubs are different from actual broadcast versions.
Those in Southeast Asia who can't get Boomerang, which has somehow obtained the rights to air parts of programming based on Hasbro's franchises almost everywhere outside North America, are screwed, since not all providers carry Boomerang. (For Southeast Asia, as of now, FIM is also on Cartoon Network) Nick Jr.? Only in Germany and Netherlands, though "A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1" can be watched for free with Spanish fansubs on a MexicanMLP website, and the German dub of the entire first season can be watched for free on Nickelodeon's German and Swiss websites. And naturally, all the videos on The Hub's website are region-locked to the USA, even the short clips (and proxies apparently don't work) – the videos on Hasbro's website may be viewable from outside the USA, but would require navigating to the US version of the Videos page. Made even worse that Boomerang was replaced by Toonami later on in the region.
A French My Little Pony magazine published by Panini has printed at least two original stories, one of which has also been printed in their German magazine mentioned below.
A German My Little Pony magazine published by Panini has printed at least eleven original comics and at least four original stories, one of which has also been printed in their French magazine mentioned above.
A Norwegian My Little Pony magazine published by Egmont has printed at least six original stories, two of which have also been printed in the Polish magazine mentioned below.
A Polish My Little Pony magazine has printed at least five original stories, two of which have also been printed in the Norwegian magazine mentioned above.
The long-awaited American releases of the Blind Bags skipped the second wave, jumping straight from the first to the third and moving forward from there. Not necessarily a bad thing, though, considering that Wave 2 had multiple instances of naming-fail.
For over two years, this was the case for Japan. Indeed, it was generally assumed that Japan would never get anything Pony-related due to Hasbro's likely inability to deal with stiff competition from the Hello Kitty and Pretty Cure franchises (and Japanese culture itself heavily averting All Girls Like Poniesnote because Japan is so heavily urbanized, most little girls have never seen ponies, much less formed any affection for them). However, G4 toys are finally released and the show has aired in April 2013 thanks to Bushiroad.
Sadly for the Japanese viewers though, Seasons 3, 4 and both Equestria Girls movies is this right now there but the merch from those seasons are available.
One of Us: Lauren Faust apparently was very aware of /co/'s obsession with the show, and (before leaving the show) would often post little in-jokes on her deviantART profile. Also, see Ascended Fanon.
She also once posted on Ponibooru prior to its shutdown, upon learning of a piece of art thanking her for all the work she put in over the previous three years that told her in no uncertain terms that yes it had been worth it.
Due to her non-involvement with the show as of Season 3, coupled with her moving on to other projects, she is not nearly as visible as she used to be, and has moved into the mode of indirectly informing fans that she'd prefer not to be bugged about Pony anymore.
Though she recently did more art of it, but that doesn't mean she's any more involved; she's been gone for pretty much 3 seasons now note Return of Harmony was supposed to be the Season 1 finale, but was pushed back to being Season 2's premiere; thus, Lesson Zero is technically the first true S2 episode, and The Best Night Ever is not technically the S1 finale, either..
Some of the directors, animators, and other folks who work on the show are also well aware of the Periphery Demographic. Song writer Daniel Ingram in particular has talked about the bronies in recent interviews and answered fan questions and has DJ-P0n3 fanart on his Facebook page (His favorite pony is Rainbow Dash).
Ingram has also commented favorably on the efforts of certain Youtubers to remix his Pony songs. In fact, he was willing to personally help out one remixer who was having trouble figuring out the chord progressions in "At The Gala".
Some people who work on children's cartoons aren't too proud of their work. Friendship is Magic animators draw OCs and cosplay.
William Anderson is definitively a brony. His homepage opens to a ponification of himself. There is also a photo of himself, in his studio, working on an episode of Friendship Is Magic.
Claire Corlett's obsession with Minecraft has become something of a meme in itself. Other fans would see her as a "Human Pinkie Pie" in her videos on Youtube, due to her misadventures she brings out in her videos.
If YouTube's search box features the name of one of the Mane Six or prominent side character, the banner changes to the coat colour of that character. This feature was removed in late 2013.
Ingram brought Mando back to play (and sing!) for Littlest Pet Shop (2012) (also produced by DHX Media). Mando has also since collaborated with Michelle Creber (and her parents) several times on musical projects.
Established fandubbers Kira Buckland and Brittany Lauda got to voice match the characters they often fan-voiced in the Power Ponies app.
Broadway actress Lena Hall, who in early 2014 revealed her love for the show after winning a Tony award, announced that she will be voicing a character in a Season 5 episode.
Recursive Adaptation: Toys → animated series → toys. Hasbro is basing more and more G4 toys, blind bag ponies in particular, on the show. Lauren Faust based the show on her childhood idea of the G1 toys (as opposed to Hasbro's shallow animated versions) plus the names of several G3 ponies. So if you buy a Rainbow Dash toy today, you acquire a toy which is based on a character in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic which in turn is Lauren Faust's interpretation of the G1 toy pony Firefly combined with the name and certain appearance details of the G3 pony Rainbow Dash.
Lauren eventually had to clarify this, insisting that fans please not remind her that Rule 34 Pony art exists.
Tara Strong jokingly posted this along with some other pictures of characters she's voiced on her Twitter, then later asked what Rule 34 and trolling was and said "Dear Princess Celestia, the Internet scares me". Then again, she's been in the business long enough to see the trend, and she's known for having a quirky sense of humor on her twitter account, so who knows at this point.
It's pretty much confirmed at this point that Tara is totally trolling the bronies, and most of them know it too. The problem is the fans who take her seriously...
Screwed by the Network: Thus far actually subverted within the US. Despite originally having a terrible airtime for new episodes – the middle of the day on a Friday! – on a non-mainstream channel that's only available on upper-tier cable and satellite packages, the show's been doing very well even with its target demographic, and The Hub considers it one of its A-list shows (moving it to the lucrative Saturday Morning slot for Seasons 2 and 3). Outside the US, however, this trope is being played depressingly straight:
A relatively mild example is in Canada, where the show airs on Treehouse TV, a channel otherwise dedicated to pre-school programming, and the airing times verge on the completely random. Let's hear it for DVRs.
In Singapore, it was broadcast on Okto..... On Weekdays, at 12 PM. With absolutely no commercial at all. Are you trying restrict this show to toddlers? Let's just hope that they put it into a better time slot when they decided to broadcast Season 2.
They did. They put Season 2 on Wednesday and Thursday at 6:30 PM, a primetime slot just one hour before Transformers Prime, quite appropriately. Cue the fandom rejoice.
You think Singapore has it bad? It's screwed to the extreme by NTV 7 in Malaysia. The show was supposed to premiere on March 3, 2012 on said channel, almost a year after it premiered in Singapore. It was yanked in the last minute and replaced with Lily The Witch. More egregiously is that the sting overlay still shows the airing show as My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. It's like the Screwed by Fox Network joke in Futurama taken up to 11 in which the show was screwed before it could even premiere!
Yes, NTV 7 finally brought Season 1 in on July 5th (one year after the season finale premiered in Singapore!), but seriously, 8:30 AM, and only one airing a week with absolutely no repeats? And season 2 and 3 are still up in the air- NTV 7 wants to assess season 1's ratings before committing to season 2 according to Hasbro Malaysia. And no, unlike Singapore, no Pay TV providers in Malaysia carry Boomerang. You guys should really consider yourself lucky.
New episodes of Season 2 were originally being aired on Saturday at 9 AM (''The Hub'' operates only on Eastern Time for most packages), but are now pushed back to 10 AM... and later changing the timeslot to 10:30 am for season 3 (which unfortunately for those on the other side of the country, will force them to wake up early to watch it at 7:30 am.)
Lauren Faust likes to occasionally answer questions about the show in her DeviantArt comments page. Several times, though, she has refused to answer questions, saying that she has an idea of the answer, but doesn't want to tie herself down to any particular position when a different answer might come up later as a plot point, and sometimes the process of writing produces more interesting answers than trying to figure it out ahead of time. Other times, she's mentioned that she simply doesn't have an answer because it's not really something she goes out of her way to think about.
Lauren: "We don't hammer logic that hard on this show."
Now that God Does Not Own This World, her responses have migrated to "My theory is X, but I don't know how the current show runners will handle that.".
My Little Pony Friendship is Magic: Adventures in Ponyville is the title of both a game and a DVD.
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is both the title of the show and the title of a Novelization of the pilotepisodes of the show.
The Magic of Friendship Storybook, the book The Magic of Frienship[sic] and the Sparkle World story The Magic of Friendship have very similar titles (two of which would be exactly the same if not for a Tyop on the Cover of one of them).
The DVD Celebration at Canterlot and the toy set Celebration at Canterlot Castle have very similar titles. This was most likely intentional, as they're both part of the Target-exclusive Canterlot set of merchandise.
Stargate City: You can tell the official Equestria map poster was drawn by the Vancouver natives at DHX Media, since its depiction of the city of Vanhoover in the northwestern corner includes the distinctive silhouettes of Harbour Centre and Canada Place.
Derpy Hooves (see Ascended Fanon) was only cross-eyed in her first appearance because of an animation mistake (or an intentional gag). She had normal eyes for her next few appearances, until the team heard about the popularity of the cross-eyed Derpy and decided to keep her that way.
Write What You Know: Meghan McCarthy said at the Canterlot Gardens convention that the reason many ponies go a little crazy in the episodes she writes is because they were mostly composed in the wee hours of the morning as she grappled with deadlines, the ponies' stress reflecting her own.
Write Who You Know: Twilight Sparkle's personality is based on that of Lauren Faust's mother, as well as girls she knew in school who were high academic achievers but didn't act like stereotypical nerds. Lauren also says Fluttershy is based on herself as a child.
Canadian So Soft talking dolls (at least So Soft Newborn Rainbow Dash) can speak English or French. The Canadian version of the talking Princess Cadance toy likely can as well, judging by its packaging being bilingual.
There are several European special editions with often-exclusive bonus contents, the most prominent of the exclusive bonus contents being brushable non-Glimmer Wings Daisy Dreams with her cutie mark on her right flank (in a 1 + 1 pack with brushable Fluttershy), brushable Rainbow Flash (in a 1 + 1 pack with brushable Rainbow Dash), brushable Skywishes (in the ride along brushable Rainbow Dash set), brushable Star Swirl (in the Rarity's Royal Gem Carriage set), and the orange carriage and purple squirrel (in the Rarity's Carousel Boutique set).
Most toys of Applejack don't include her hat, presumably because it'd be an extra accessory. The ones that do make her hat light blue or pink instead of brown.
In order to be more appealing to girls, early toy versions of Princess Celestia were pink rather than white, even though the boxes depict her as white. Back when the pink toys were the only ones, Lauren Faust said "I must admit I'm disappointed Celestia is pink. I'm not sure why they went that way, but my experience with the toy industry (through my Galaxy Girls project) is that you often have to to bow to the will of the 'buyers' — the guys who decide what they are going to put on the shelf in their store. Often they will say things like 'I'll buy 50, but if you make it pink I'll buy 500' and since the toy company makes their profit from the buyer and not the consumer, it makes sense for them to compromise. It's a really stupid, frustrating business." In fact, rumor has it that the reason Princess Cadence was introduced in the season 2 finale was so the buyers could have a pink princess toy and a show-accurate white Celestia toy.
They also made Princess Luna purplish-hued instead of dark blue and black.
Most of the ponies that come with an animal pet don't have the same pets as seen in the show.
Twilight has an owl instead of Spike, though this may be because Spike is a sapient assistant rather than a pet animal.
Does Spike's jealousy over Owloysius in "Owl's Well That Ends Well" mean the toy was supposed to tie into the episode, or is that just the crew venting?
Now Spike does come with Twilight as part of her Twinkling Balloon play-set. Yay!
The commercial is hilarious because even though the audio makes no mention at all of Spike his toy is featured prominently, as if Hasbro is saying "There! Twilight and Spike, together at last!" Are you happy now? Please buy our stuff!
Speaking of Spike's toy, he comes permanently posed on all fours, and while he does stand like this in the show on occasion, he mostly stands on his hind legs. Only his So Soft Newborn toy has him sit up straight.
Some of the ponies introduced in the toy line are recolors of the Mane Six, while the recolored artwork that appears on the package doesn't match the character the toy was based on. For instance, the toy of Blossomforth is Fluttershy with a white coat and a red-and-green mane, but the package artwork shows Rainbow Dash with the same colors. And when Blossomforth made the jump to the show, she was given a different appearance (probably because it'd be a bit odd to feature a pony looking just like one of the Mane Six).
Conversely, for a very long time there were no toys of many of the background ponies who frequently appear on the show—including no male ponies whatsoever. The eventual stock of male ponies are nearly all Palette Swaps of Big McIntosh (for Earth ponies) or Shining Armor (for unicorns), which makes the background stallions larger than they are in the show.
Among the Blind Bag ponies are several recolors that actually resemble some background ponies in the show, starting with Flower Wishes (called Daisy in the show) Roseluck (called Rose in the show), and Lemon Hearts. As an amusing side note, Fluttershy, Cheerilee, and Trixie Lulamoon are demoted to Rainbow Dash, Applejack, and Rarity recolors! Though, at least Fluttershy is finally set to get her own mold, in a set based on the pilot.
Relatively minor, but one of the first things most fans of the show do after purchasing Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash or Applejack toys is to take a pair of scissors to all that excess mane.
Approval of God: Hasbro and/or The Hub have sent official material to popular fansites Equestria Daily and Ponychan, including exclusive interviews with the show's creative staff. Everfree Radio, a project that started on Equestria Daily, regularly gets clearances to conduct surprisingly lengthy interviews of the show's actors, animators, composers, and writers.
She also listens to the fanbase when it comes to which background characters become Ensemble Darkponies, and we're gradually seeing this bear fruit. For instance, Derpy Hooves has been officially canonized, being included in episode storyboards as a Where's Waldo-style challenge in season 1 ("Derpy" is even her canon name according to some Season 2 concept art) and getting lines, a ditzy personality and even being called "Derpy" by Rainbow Dash in S2's The Last Roundup.
While it's unknown if it was intended to be so before the fandom reaction, Luna's characterization as The Atoner seeking to make up for her actions as Nightmare Moon was probably one of the most common fanon interpretations of her character.
Derpy Hooves' name and personality, all extrapolated from an animation glitch in the first episode.
Ever since the Pegasus Derpy became the unofficial mother of the Unicorn Dinky (in fanon), fans tried to explain how that's possible; theories ranged from the father being a Unicorn to it being in their DNA – complete with detailed Punnet Squares to justify it. "Baby Cakes" revealed that the Cakes' new baby twin foals, Unicorn and a Pegasus, got those traits from their parents' other family members.
As of "Magic Duel", Alicorn is a canon term for a Winged Unicorn. Possibly.note The scripts themselves usually use "Unicorn-Pegasus" or "Pegacorn". As mentioned multiple times throughout various MLP subpages, "alicorn" specifically refers to the material that a unicorn's horn is made of, nothing more. Pony fans began using the incorrect term probably due to Rule of Cool. Though an argument can easily be made that "alicorn" as synonym for "Winged Unicorn" is a corruption of the French words for wing ("aile") and horn ("cor" or "corne").
As of "Magical Mystery Cure," the term is now undeniable, as Rarity refers to Twilight as an alicorn.
Lauren herself had previously used the term in interviews.
The Equestrivia Challenge game on the Hub website uses the fan names in several questions, such as Lyra Heartstrings, DJ Pon3, Aloe and Lotus Blossom, and more. Derpy andDoctor Whoves even stand next toeach other on the congratulations screen.
Doctor Whooves is an interesting case as, in the recently released official guidebook entitled The Elements of Harmony, he is referred to by that name, yet other sources seem to indicate his name in-universe is Time Turner. Curiously, Derpy goes entirely unnamed in the book.
The idea of remnants of Nightmare Moon taking corporeal form has been explored in Past Sins. While the origin of the remnants is different, a similar idea has been introduced in the form of the Pony of Shadows in "Castle Mane-ia".
The Enterplay trading card set makes many fanon ideas official, including Octavia and her friendship/rivalry with DJ Pon-3 (see Ascended Meme below), the name of Mayor Mare, and Time Turner being in charge of "all things timey-wimey."
So does the official box set with Thunderlane, Rainbowfied Fluttershy and (picture of muffin) on Amazon here. Amazon refers to her as Derpy, but the box itself just shows a muffin.
In a larger sense, the entire Friendship is Magic series is an ascension of the fanon Lauren Faust created for her My Little Pony toys when she played with them as a child.
Due to YouTube's subtitle "Blind Idiot" Translation errors, the Sea Serpent in Friendship Is Magic Part 2 was christened Steven Magnet by the fans. Two years later, Hasbro releases toys of the sea serpent and the manticore from the same episode, naming them officially. The manticore was named Manny Roar, and guess what the sea serpent was named.
A number of fanon names for background characters have ascended thanks to the Enterplay trading cards, Gameloft video game, and toys. Notably, DJ Pon-3, Octavia, Lyra, Lotus Blossom, and Nurse Redheart have all appeared in toy form under their fanon names.
Ever since it was first mentioned in "It's About Time", Tartarus became subject to fan fics about one (if not all) of the monsters imprisoned there breaking free. In the episodenote which was teased at including an "Alicorn Princess Discord", our villain does just that.Thanks, M.A. Larson!.
Fans have been calling for Tirek to be brought into G4 continuity for a long time, and fanart and fanfics featuring him are plentiful. Now their wish has been granted.
Earth Ponies being stronger than the other two tribes was a piece of fanon so common that it was near-universally accepted. It helps that it was established by Word of God or at least Word of Dante, and there have always been things such as only earth ponies plowing snow in Winter Wrap Up, or Cheerilee and Ms. Peachbottom's epicJuggernaut moments in Hearts and Hooves Day and Games Ponies Play, respectively, and Big Mac and Maud's Running Gag of insaneSuper Strength. It was up to fans whether to take those moments as proof of earth ponies being stronger as a trait of the race, or as the pegasi and unicorns having other jobs in the first case and Rule of Funny in all those others, but now Celestia confirms this as canon when she mentions that "without their strength" (drained by Tirek), they would not be able to tend the land.
Defictionalization: The fanmade ones (for the official ones, see this trope's listing in the Staff and Production folder):
Some have actually tried to make muffins with Applejack's "baked bads" recipe. With some tweaking (most notably gummy worms for earthworms) you can produce something "reasonably palatable◊". Using actual worms, though, brings them closer to what the episode purports.
When one of the actors at the second Bronycon mentioned that she would enjoy seeing a particular drawing, the MC quipped that there would be at least a dozen pieces of relevant fanart by the end of that day (less than 12 hours).
While other female fans dislike the term and prefer to just be "bronies", considering it gender-neutral.
Another term is "bronette", nowhere near as popular as "brony" or "pegasister".
Fandom Life Cycle: Stage 4 "large and organized" verging on Stage 5 (sufficiently ingrained in contemporary culture for even the people not familiar with it to know a lot about it). The fanbase has now been referenced on Saturday Night Live not positively, mind you, but then no "nerdy" thing ever is.
The main six ponies are referred to collectively as the Mane Six by fans, though it's not a term used in the show.
Officially referred to as this in issue 18 of the comic.
And sometimes "The Mane Cast" or "The Mane Seven" if one's willing to include Spike.
The Mane Six minus Twilight Sparkle are commonly called "The ReMane Five".
Also, if any of the Mane Characters has a breakdown, shows off a different personality, or otherwise something is different about them than usual, it tends to get its own nickname – such as "Pinkamena" for straight-haired depressed Pinkie, "Flutterage" for Fluttershy's rampage in "The Best Night Ever", "Flutterbitch" for Fluttershy's Discorded personality in "The Return of Harmony", and "Psycho Twilight" (or "Crazy Twilight") for Twilight's breakdown in "Lesson Zero". There are many, many more; too many to really list them all here.
At least, up until "Green Isn't Your Color". The nickname seems to have officially transferred to Photo Finish since then (despite clear evidence that Photo Finish is actually based on "Vogue" fashion editor Anna Wintour).
The big red dragon from "Dragonshy" seems to have attracted the nickname "Basil", after a dragon from the G1 series.
Thanks to some fans fooling around with YouTube's So Bad, It's Good auto-caption function, a lot of fans have taken to calling the Sea Serpent from episode 2 "Steven Magnet".
Pinkie's sisters are often called Blinkamena/Bellamina Marie ("Blinkie") and Inkamena/Isabelle Lilly ("Inkie"); likewise, her parents are often dubbed "Clyde" and "Sue". There's a theme here.
Prince Blueblood, Celestia's infamous very-far-removed nephew, was known for a while as "Prince Astron", since he wasn't referred to by name during his first appearance (during Rarity's fantasy sequence in "The Ticket Master"). When he turned out to be a pompous jerk in "The Best Night Ever", he quickly attracted a host of unflattering nicknames, including "Prince Glueblood" and "Prince Douchebag".
Discord is sometimes referred to as DisQord to draw attention to his voice actor having played Q from Star Trek. Some fans have also taken to shortening his name to "Disco", because of a short clip of him doing "the running man" while hopping around in Celestia's stained glass windows.
The boulder that Discord tricks Rarity into lugging around was dubbed "Dan" by the fans as a result of Youtube captions. Then the next episode came out, revealing that Rarity had named it "Tom". The boulder is now sometimes known as "Tom Dan" by fans.
"Tia" is a common pet name for Celestia used by her younger sister Luna among the fandom.
From "Lesson Zero", Rainbow Dash's aerial dive that utterly decimated Applejack's old barn and left a rainbow-colored mushroom cloud has been given many different nicknames like the Atomic Rainboom, the Sonic Rainbomb, or the Sonic Rainnuke. The latter seems to be the most popular.
The Nice Hat that Cheerilee gives Spike in "Secret of My Excess" has made the fans give Spike the nickname of Smooth Criminal, to go with all the Michael Jackson jokes.
The Japanese fansubs on Nico Nico Douga have led to 'Aniki' (Big Bro) for Big McIntosh.
Japanese fans teasingly call Rarity "Obasan (aunt/old lady)"
The changeling that took up Pinkie's request to transform into her has become popular enough that ponibooru dubbed the changeling Doomie, based on the line that got it to transform in the first place ("Do me! Do me!").
Some fans predicted Silver Spoon would show some hidden kindness because she has a heart in the handle of the spoon in her Cutie Mark. In "Family Appreciation Day", she's the first pony to start applauding Granny Smith's story about the foundation of Ponyville.
It was never implied that Spitfire was Captain of the Wonderbolts in her first couple of appearances, but most fans assumed she was after "The Best Night Ever", probably due to her being the more level-headed of the two named Wonderbolts. This was confirmed in "Hurricane Fluttershy" and in "Wonderbolts Academy".
It was very common for fanfics to have the events of "Boast Busters" result in Trixie's life being ruined. Turns out that's EXACTLY what happened.
Ever since the first episode, fans have speculated what the future holds for Twilight Sparkle. It was fairly common belief early on that Celestia was grooming Twilight to be her eventual replacement, and while that hasn't come to pass, she's now an Alicorn Princess. The Element of Magic is after all, as Twilight herself puts it, a "Big Crown Thingy". Helps that one of the show's staff drew a sketch of Side Story Bonus Art a month after the pilot episode aired.
For two years prior to that, fans often referred to this possibility as Twilight "ascending". That's pretty much exactly what happened.
Rarity calling the newly transformed Twilight "an alicorn" in the Season 3 finale finally elevates that long-popular Fan Nickname for the Winged Unicorns of the series to canon status. (The "Alicorn Amulet" in "Magic Duel" already introduced the word itself, but didn't yet make quite clear what it referred to).
Several seiyuu fans thought that Kikuko Inoue would be a perfect voice for the Japanese version of Princess Celestia. It turns out she does voice her in the official Japanese dub.
Same for those who predicted that Shigeru Chiba would voice Discord.
Internet Backlash: In the earliest years of the fandom, openly mentioning that you liked the show almost anywhere on the Internet was a very bad idea. This has died down somewhat as the fandom has grown and more and more people have watched the show, but the more open and obnoxious bronies are still hit with a lot of bile (and, of course, have broad generalizations about the fandom as a whole made around them).
For the better part of a year, Princess Luna was often portrayed in the fandom as a meek, soft-spoken woobie. It was a surprise when Luna's reappearance in "Luna Eclipsed" portrayed her as a bellowing Large Ham with a taste for the macabre, but no less a woobie for it.
A minor case with Vinyl Scratch, who returns in "A Canterlot Wedding, Part 2". Most fans believed her eyes were red behind the Cool Shades; they actually turned out to be magenta. Close, but no cigar.
In Inspiration Manifestation, finally seeing him without his straw hat, the fans now know for sure that Rarity's father is a unicorn, and not an Earth pony as many had believed. (Though this was previously revealed in the Elements of Harmony guidebook.)
It was part of the collective headcanon that ages ago, before they were as powerful as they are now, Celestia had pink hair instead of her rainbow mane (as seen in various old depictions of the sisters, including the book seen in this two parter) and Luna looked like her season one self (as per Lauren Faust's explaining the redesign by saying it was because right after being purified her magic was at its lowest). Well in Twilight's Kingdom Part 1, when the princesses explicitly lend all of their magic to Twilight, the only change to their designs is that their manes are no longer blowing in a nonexistent wind. This makes nonsensical oddities out of Luna's earlier design (why did she look that way after purification, then?) and Celestia's depiction in books and tapestries (if she never really looked like that, is every pony ever to draw her colorblind?) but hey, every show has a Headscratchers page for a reason. However, it could be that donating all their Alicorn magic does not stop them from being Alicorns, as indicated by Cadence remaining one.
The fact that Celestia lacks a pink mane in the flashbacks could also be chalked up to budget and puppet reuse; the flashback in the first episode shows Celestia with a pink mane, not a aurora-based one.
It was surprising to see in Twilight's Kingdom Part 2, that the black patches on Luna's rump are part of her coat, not her cutie mark.
There's a popular Doctor Who companion named Rose. Given the popularity of Doctor Whooves in this fandom, it's a little surprising that Rose, a minor recurring and named character in the show, doesn't show up more in crossover fanworks (most of them instead use Derpy as The Doctor's Companion).
Presumably because Rose here is A) a ginger where DW's Rose was a bottle blonde originally brunette and B) shallow and panicky, where DW's was still somewhat shallow but not to the extent of MLP's Rose and she's much more level-headed.
Celestia is also the name of a popular astronomy software.
About a year before the series hit, Daffy Duck encounters a character called Celestia in a dream seuence/music video called 'the Wizard.'
Separated by a Common Language: For those outside Northern America it's really weird seeing Ponyville going nuts for cider in The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000. This is because "cider" in the US and Canada primarily means a soft drink (like apple juice but spiced and much less processed), while everywhere else cider is alcoholic by default.
The US and Canada certainly do have alcoholic cider (even if it's not the norm), and given the ponies' expressions after drinking it this ambiguity was definitely intentional on Studio B's part.
Besides this wiki, there are also quite a number of other wikis dedicated to MLP:FiM such as ones which focuses more on the fandom and fan works. One of these fandom focused wikis is the My Little Pony Fan Labor Wiki. Created to cater to the fandom, this is where the main FiM wiki dumps various fan materials in. Another one is the Fallout: Equestria Wiki, a wiki dedicated to the Fallout: EquestriaFan Verse.