My Little Pony
A Classic 80s Toy
My Little Pony was an extremely popular toy in the 80s. Originally introduced in 1981 as My Pretty Pony, it was remarketed in 1982 as My Little Pony. The first generation line ran for twelve years, until 1995. A favourite of many young girls, its not surprising the toy had such large success. My Little Ponies come in a variety of colours and each has a unique symbol on their sides. While most ponies are female, a few males have been released over time. Like many other girls of the 80s, My Little Ponies are one of my fondest childhood memories.
This picture shows some of the original ponies.
All images belong to author unless otherwise credited.
Generations of Ponies
Through the years
Over time, there have been four generations of ponies. The first generation lasted from 1982-95. (The U.S. stopped marketing them in 1992.) See below for more information on generation 1. Generation 2 was launched in 1998 with slimmer ponies, but it did not see much success and only lasted one year in the U.S. They were called the Friendship Garden Ponies. Generation 2 lasted longer overseas, even seeing a wider range of products such as perfume and magazines, but were eventually replaced by Generation 2. While the G2 ponies lived in Friendship Gardens (or Ponyland in Europe), The G3 ponies called Ponyville. As before, Earth, Unicorn, and Pegasus ponies were released. Generation 4 arrived in 2010, along with the animated series My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. The first of the G4 ponies were from the television show, with others later being introduced. Generation 4 is still active.
Seen here is Up, Up, and Away, a Gen1 Twice as Fancy Pony.
Opening Theme - Remember this?
Here's the opening theme of the original My Little Pony. Bring back any memories?
The beginning of it all
While I have seen some of the G2, G3, and G4 ponies in stories and on T.V., I grew up with the Gen 1 ponies and feel compelled to focus on them. As much as I love that My Little Ponies are popular again, for me, none of the current ones can compare to the classics.
Even before the first generation of ponies came My Pretty Pony in 1981. From what I have found, this included only two ponies. They were very similar to the ponies released later. In 1982, the original six ponies, Blossom, Bluebelle, Butterscotch, Cotton Candy, Minty, and Snuzzle, were released. These ponies had flat feet; they were later re-released with curved hooves. The following year, they were joined by more Earth Ponies. (Earth Ponies are those who are not Unicorns, Pegasus, or Sea Ponies.) Some of these new ponies had different poses from the originals, beginning the tradition of continually expanding and diversifying the line. There were also a few Unicorn, Pegasus, rainbow, and Sea Ponies introduced in this second year. Baby ponies arrived in the third year, 1984, and so-soft ponies came in year five.
Hasbro continued to be more creative with My Little Pony, eventually releasing flutter ponies, sparkly ponies, twins, newborns, princess ponies (complete with pets), dancing ponies, families, and pony friends. Each pony came with a brush or comb and some later ponies came with additional accessories or had accessories available to buy. The princesses had a hat and magic wand while there was a studio you could get for the dancing ponies.
This picture shows Princess Royal Blue and Princess Tiffany, complete with pets, crowns, combs, and (one) wand. Hopefully the second wand will turn up one day!
Rescue at Midnight Castle Clip - The first animated adventure
Rescue at Midnight Castle was the first My Little Pony movie. I can't count how many times we rented this from the movie store when my sister and I were little. I have no idea why we didn't just buy it--the only reason I can think of is that it wasn't available. We certainly would have saved a lot of money if we could have! Watch this youtube clip if you're curious or if you remember watching the movie, too!
Original Pony Movies - Relive them!
Watch some of the original My Little Pony movies thanks to Amazon! You can revisit your childhood or introduce them to the next generation.
Growing Up With My Little Pony
Children of the 80s
I don’t remember ever asking my parents to buy me a pony. At least, not the real kind. What I do remember is begging for a new My Little Pony every time we entered a toy store. I don’t actually remember getting my first Pony. My sister is four years older than I am, so I assume that she was already collecting them by the time I was old enough to start. While we had a lot of other classic toys such as Barbies, tinker toys, and Transformers, and while I remember all of these fondly, our favourite toys were most definitely My Little Pony. Between the two of us, we think we accumulated around 200 (we’ve never counted, though that will be on my summer to-do list this year).
I remember constantly pouring over the pamphlet that listed each pony available and obsessing over which ones I didn’t have and wanted the most. We each had at least one pony from every category on the pamphlet and I loved the idea of completing our collection. Unfortunately, we never even neared this goal.
My Little Pony allowed for endless use of our imaginations. Katherine and I spent hours creating stories and worlds for our ponies. They had addresses, took swimming lessons, went to school, and took vacations. We kept meticulous records of everything (and we occasionally run across an old copy of these, even now). I honestly don’t remember ever growing out of My Little Pony. I think we stopped buying them simply because Hasbro stopped making them. I’m still nostalgic whenever I remember them and the endless hours we spent playing with them.
Seen here is a collection of the baby ponies.
My Little Pony Tales - The last show
This show was the final animated version of Generation 1 Ponies that I know of. I loved watching it when I was little and managed to tape every episode. I remember being very upset when it ended.
If you haven't tried the new My Little Pony show, give it a shot. It's still not the original (forgive my nolsalga), but it's a good show! My Little Pony Friendship still embodies all the ideals of the original show while modernizing the franchise for the new generation.