Recently it’s been stated that Hasbro and Discovery have ended their partnership over the Hub Network. Either at the start or at the end of the fourth quarter The Hub Network will be rebranded as the Discovery Family Network.
Why did this happen? Well part of it is because while the network was doing okay it was far behind Disney Channel, Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon, in fact the only two shows that helped the network come close to beating them were My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and Littlest Pet Shop. I’ve also read a couple of articles that there was arguing between the two companies over what kind of programing should be on the network (Hasbro wanted more kids programing (mostly their’s) and Discovery wanted more family programing). Another part of it was the fact that it was limiting to Hasbro in terms of where they could air their shows. Basically with the partnership with Discovery, all of Hasbro’s shows would go straight to the Hub, now on one side this is a good thing because they had a network guaranteed to air their shows, on the other hand if some other network was interested in airing their programing (like say Cartoon Network or Disney Channel) they couldn’t make that deal because they could only air their shows on the Hub.
Of course this news has got a lot of people asking questions, but the main question that most people (or at least most of my followers) are asking is “What’s going to happen to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic”?
First of all, don’t panic, just because the Hub is getting rebranded doesn’t mean that MLP:FIM will get the axe. It’s currently one of the most popular cartoon shows on the air now, I doubt Hasbro would just let it end without a fight (not when there’s so much more merchandise they can sell).
There is still a big possibility that MLP will stay on the newly branded Discovery Family Network, like I said before it was one of the few big hits the channel so Discovery will probably want to keep it, then again Hasbro could always take it off and put it on some other network. It’s been confirmed that Hasbro has been talking with Cartoon Network over possible airing rights to their future shows. In fact it’s been said that one of the Hasbro shows currently on the Hub Network will move over to Cartoon Network around the time when the rebranding begins though it hasn’t been confirmed which one it will be.
So, could My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic be coming to Cartoon Network? It’s a possibility, but I’m not completely sure it would be for the best. On the positive side it could be help the show get more well known since CN is more widely available than the Hub, on the negative side of things CN hasn’t been the kindest to shows that have a female demographic. In fact the DC animated show Young Justice got cancelled because it had a larger female audience than it did a male audience, so I doubt CN would be interested in a show as girl oriented as MLP. Then again CN is starting a new PowerPuff Girls series so it could be possible that they’ve changed their minds since then (also Turner Broadcasting currently has the airing rights to the series in Europe so that could support the reason why they would want to get the rights in America too), but I still think it’s pretty unlikely. I think it’s more likely that one of the Transformersshows will be making the switch to CN before MLP.
Now it could be possible that Nickelodeon or Disney Channel could decide to pick up the show as well (actually out of the three other choices Disney Channel would probably be the best fit for MLP, since there’s more of a focus on girl oriented programing there), but nothing has been said or hinted at Hasbro talking with those channels. Another possibility, though a very slim one, would be for MLP to become a completely digital show where the episodes are released on streaming for Netflix or some other website (like I said it’s a very slim possibility, but you never know). Heck you could make the argument that Hasbro could continue making the show for foreign countries alone, it’s certainly popular enough in other territories to do so.
So what will happen to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic? The truth is, I don’t know, nobody knows really. The only people who do know are the folks at Hasbro and they probably haven’t even settled on an answer for all we know. What we do know for sure is that MLP has got a 5th season currently in production that is going to air at some point on some network so we have that to look forward to.
This is just one of those things we’ll just have to wait on to find the answer. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. Until then I would suggest to think positive and not assume the worst. Like I said MLP:FIM is one of the most popular cartoon shows on the air now, in fact one of the Hasbro executives said recently that they have plans for to have the series run for about five more yearsso I doubt they’ll end it just yet (gotta sell those plastic figurines while they still can).
So like I said before stay positive my friends.