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Bronies, the adult male fandom for “My Little Pony,” might be the best male-led nerd group for women

Of course, concerns are inevitable when it comes to a group of men who idolize animals that look and act like little girls. A progressive mother I spoke to, who has a preteen daughter, was horrified when she learned the meaning of “brony.” Another woman I talked to about bronies, in her mid-20s, said there is good reason for skepticism and horror, revealing a side of brony culture that smacks of pedophilia and bestiality. She explained that among bronies, there were those drawn by sexual fantasy — those who wanted to be with the ponies. A quick internet search on the subject will lead you straight to MLP-style butt plugs, fleshlights and an MLP plush toy with a “hole in her butt that you can stick your penis in.”

Chris*, who used to work in a professional setting with brony clients, countered that the sex-motivated brony represents a “niche group and common misconception.” Turns out, they are a niche group, and those I spoke to are involved in sexual relationships with adult humans. Some enjoy MLP-based erotica; others opt for role-play. Like the overall brony population, they are both men and women. JP, a 33-year-old male fan of the show from Florida, put it simply, in describing the presence of “clop fiction,” aka MLP erotica: “Just look up rule 34.”

“Apple Trainer,” a 28-year-old Indiana man who one identified as a brony, said he knows of people who have purchased MLP-themed sex toys. He has some female brony friends, and they’re “more into it” than he is, including their participation in the kink dichotomy of ponies (“people in the community that enjoy being treated as a pony”) and handlers (“people that take care of, train, clean, etc. the ponies”) — a relationship that resembles that of a submissive and a dominant, involving two consenting adults.

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