Hasbro initially hired Faust to create a pitch bible for the show, allowing her to get additional help with conceptualization. Faust said she was “extremely skeptical” about taking the job at first because she had always found shows based on girls’ toys to be boring and unrelatable. She was disappointed that what she thought of the toys at the time was nothing like the animated shows, in which the characters, according to her, “had endless tea parties, giggled over nothing and defeated villains by either sharing with them or crying”. With the chance to work on My Little Pony, one of her favorite childhood toys, she hoped to prove that “cartoons for girls don’t have to be a puddle of smooshy, cutesy-wootsy, goody-two-shoeness”. To do this, she incorporated many elements into the show that subverted stereotypes of girls, such as diverse personalities, character flaws and personality disorders, the message that friends can be different and can get into arguments but still be friends, and the idea that girls should not be limited by what others say they can or can not do. Elements of the characters’ personalities and the show’s settings were based on her own childhood imagination of the ponies’ adventures, in part inspired by the animated shows that her brothers would watch while growing up, such as Transformers and G. I. Joe. Faust still aimed for the characters to be “relatable” characters, using stereotypical “icons of girliness” to broaden the appeal of the characters for the young female audience.
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