The Pony follow-up
So I think I know what happened to the My Little Pony aesthetic. And I have no evidence to support this theory at all, so brace yourself.
It was the Flutter Ponies.
Peach Blossom on black… black as her soul.
(Image stolen from parts unknown. If I stole it from you, let me know.)
They were the last kind of pony I remember before I lost touch. The gimmick was that they had these translucent plastic wings mounted on their backs, and if you pressed a button between them they flapped a little. They were the girliest ponies ever — they made my Twice As Fancy Sugarberry look like a knife fight at a stevedore poker tournament).
In design, they had longer legs and smaller heads. This did somewhat offend my pony aesthetic, but I understand the change — if you’re going to imbue a horse with the power of flight on gossamer wings you’re probably gonna wanna lithe `em up a little bit.
But these skinny ponies had a deadly Soul Caliber combo of planned obsolescence that must have sent pony collectors racing to Kay-Bees all over the country to clean them out:
- The wings were fragile.
- The wings fit only in their respective sides — the right wing in the right clip, and the left wing in the left.
- The wings CAME OFF. EASILY. And vanished.
I took pretty good care of all my ponies, but those clear plastic wings just took the hell off. On eBay, “mint” for a Flutter Pony uniformly means “mint with no wings.” A Flutter with mail-order replacement wings goes for about $60, and a Flutter mint-in-box goes for about a hundred.
So I visualize kids across America going nuts for these ponies and their new hottness wings. And I visualize Hasbro mistaking the demand as being about their slim design and not their fruit fly lifespans. Next thing you know, all the ponies are skinny and I have the vapors.
That’s my theory.