Last week, Kenton and I talked about Niche Nerds; those who love a media property so much that they celebrate it in their everyday lives, attend conventions, dress in costumes and generally obsess over everything having to do with their TV show/movie/video game of choice.
The discussion was brought on by my viewing of Bronies: The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony. Here’s the trailer:
It’s a really good documentary, and if you’re interested in geek culture in any way, I highly recommend that you give it a watch. It’s on Netflix.
Watching this film made me curious. Could I be a Brony? If I had discovered this show at the right time in my life, would I have enjoyed Pony Cosplay, creating fan art for the show, or writing awesome songs about its characters? (Seriously, there’s some really great stuff out there produced in the name of the ponies!)
That song was written by The Living Tombstone and Eurobeat Brony, two guys who were featured in the documentary, and now I can’t get it out of my head.
Unfortunately, I suspect the answer would be no. I watched a few episodes of MLP: Friendship is Magic sans kids this weekend, just to see what all the fuss was about. The show is good. I mean REALLY good. As a veteran watcher of literally hundreds of children’s TV shows, I can say without a doubt that this is one of the best. The animation is great, the characters are really funny and engaging, and the content of this show teaches valuable life lessons. I really did like it a lot.
But not enough to shout it out to the world. Not enough to dress up, write fan fiction, or get into heated debates about whether Discord is really a bad guy or not (I have no frame of reference here. I don’t know what Bronies argue about, but it seems to me that they could argue about that).
To be fair, I don’t know that I love any media franchise enough to do those things for it. I love Star Trek, Star Wars, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Firefly, Minecraft and yes, even My Little Pony. But I’m not the kind of fan who wears my fandom on my sleeve. I prefer to celebrate it in private, or in the company of a few good friends.
And I have nothing but incredible respect for those who have the courage to do so. I love going to conventions and seeing the cosplay. I love seeing like-minded people gather to revel in their love of a single thing. I even love to see these Winnipeg Star Trek fans from the 80s create a super cheesy cable access TV show:
Maybe I do need to put myself out there more. Maybe I should write some Star Wars fan fiction. Maybe I should dress up as Malcolm Reynolds for this year’s Central Canada Comic Con. (Listen, we’re taking baby steps here. I’ll work my way up to Drax the Destroyer just as soon as I’ve got the abs for it.)
Alright, consider this my Nerd Year’s Resolution. I’m going to get my geek on and express my love of these things more publicly. Come October, I will cosplay at CCC.
And thank you Bronies, for being yourselves no matter what. You make me be a better nerd.