I think it’s okay for you to collect ponies, Maxwell.

I had an idea for a different (also poorer) version of this comic years ago, but I ended up shelving it. For some reason, I was afraid that I would polarize readers if I made any pony jokes. I also worried that people wouldn’t like Maxwell if we added “Brony” to his other geek labels. At the time, Maxwell was my most popular character, so I didn’t want to mess with him. I did leave a Twilight Sparkle toy somewhere in this comic, but I didn’t make anymore references.

Then I read this interview with cartoonist Lauren Faust. I was moved by the things she said about how important it is that males can enjoy stories with female characters, the way females can enjoy stories with male characters. She urged people to like what they like without being ashamed. At the time, I didn’t think that lesson applied to me as a female, but then I realized that I had a chance to act on this lesson through my male characters. And I was blowing it.

And let’s be honest. Of course Maxwell would like ponies. And he’s not really ashamed of anything he does.