The second set of Rainbow Ponies were more daring in their colours. They still had two each of Unicorn, Pegasus and Earth Pony, and still each pony had a four coloured mane and tail. But the colours were more vibrant than the last set - melon, pink, blue and neon yellow.
These ponies were not sold in the UK despite being included in UK stories and the Fact File. This being Hasbro, however, this did not mean that there does not exist a UK backcard for this set. Of course there does! It just never got released here, and was an export to other countries. Unfair? Of course! But that typified the sets from this year.
FLUTTERBYE (HONG KONG, HASBRO UK MARKED CARD)
I am looking for this card, or a pony mint on this card,to add to my collection. If you have one, please get in touch!
The above image is proof of how mean Hasbro were to children in the UK in 1985. Where exactly this version of Flutterbye was meant to be released is open to debate, but her owner got her from a seller in Australia, and it is possible that she was packaged thus for the Australian market. Given that other early UK-style cards have been found in Scandinavia and South Africa, it is also not impossible this release ended up there. Where she did NOT end up, however, was here. Oh, the irony.
Interestingly, the story on the above card is not the same as the one in the UK Fact File, although the card itself is marked Hasbro UK and states its conformity to UK toy regulations. Starflower was not included on this card, making it seem unlikely she was ever intended for UK sale.
Other releases around Europe featured these ponies made in different places and with slight set variations to their personnel. These also had cards with suspiciously UK-style artwork. Some featured the same artwork as shown above, and some used the same template but differed in the detail. Below is a comparison using 2 versions of Spanish-made Pinwheel. Not only is Flutterbye swapped for Starflower, but a stream is randomly added:
PINWHEEL (No Country/Spain)
Just to make it more confusing, the cards didn't even feature the set of six you might expect.
The French card matches the 'UK' version above, featuring all of the 1985 Rainbow Ponies photographed above except Starflower, who was replaced by Moonstone (although she does not appear on the front). The Spanish card depicts a set that featured Parasol but no Flutterbye. This card was also used for an Italian made set sold in Germany, which featured Parasol with the hair colours from Year Three. It is hard to know which version was original and which was amended, but Flutterbye looks a little odd in the walking pose!
PARASOL (ITALY) with Year 3 hair colours
The UK did eventually get Confetti, who had a very special role as Ponyland's first bride, but she did not officially come out until the 1986 line and when she did, she had a completely different pose from her US equivalent. :) Of these characters, only Flutterbye was transposed across to feature in the German Rainbow Pony set from 1987.
Thanks to Shivhae for the image of "UK" Flutterbye and French-carded Pinwheel MOC.