This will definitely be receiving more academic treatment from me, as I do some side projects on the issues of gender and reception surrounding My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. This new movie turns the ponies into quasi-humans (they retain their pony colors but in human form). Hasbro says they are trying to target teenage girls with this film, which is due in theatres this June, by giving them characters they can more easily identify with. – Equestria Girls, a My Little Pony Offshoot, in Its Movie Debut – NYTimes.com.
However, it is not hard to see how a specific subset of the MLP:FIM fandom will take this in a very different way. We have already seen instances of anthropomorphizing the ponies into human form across fan art — to the extent of applying Rule 34 to the characters. The sexualization of the characters is an fan activity that is common to cartoon characters, even non-human cartoon characters. The application of it to MLP:FIM is slightly different, given that this is a text targeted to girls, and yet the Rule 34 is often applied from older, and usually male, fans — leading to interest fan activity such as this “dispute”.