The Cultural Evolution of My Little Ponies

So I’ve been on the lookout for more artifacts that might say interesting things about how we represent bodies, and then this weekend at the Festival of Faith and Writing, the lovely Amy L. Peterson introduced herself and said “Check out My Little Ponies! They’ve changed!”

And I did.

So here we go, three separate incarnations of My Little Pony–

Moondancer toy, 1980s
My Little Pony TV show, 1980s

And then the Moondancer toy from the mid-90s, a bit taller, a bit thinner, eyes larger and ‘sexier’ (is that possible on a plastic toy pony?)

Mid-90s TV show poster

And a contemporary pony, much taller and thinner, with even huger, sexier eyes:

and the television show poster, where the eyes are frighteningly large:

Is the slimming of toy horses reflective of the growing fear of fat in our culture? Does sexiness in a toy animal relate in any way to the expectation of sexiness in or of a young girl? I don’t know. But the old ponies seem childlike and sweet, and the new ones don’t.

What say you, dear readers?

{You may also enjoy reading The Cultural Evolutions of Candy Land, Morton Salt & Coca-Cola, and G.I. Joe}