1985: So Soft Ponies
1987: My Little Pony


Neon pink earth pony with neon yellow mane and tail, blue and white sunglasses symbol

Yes, she really is as brightly coloured as she looks in the picture!

In the UK comic, Shady was the ultimate hallucinogenic hippy pony. She had a pair of magic sunglasses which she would put on and look through to see magical worlds and adventures. As a kid, of course, I loved the apparent gimmick of this clever trick. Shady was always a smart pony, and never left in the background. As an adult, I wonder a little about the acid-trip that is her general story formula, but either way she was always a strong character in the pony comics.

Though for the life of me I can't find my own, I'm reliably informed that Shady came with a round puffy sticker when new in the UK release. It's possible that when the same set were released on the same cards in Scandinavia, they did not have stickers - this is unconformed. My MOC French Shady (pictured) has a North Star sticker with only "Cine Stars" written on it - that resolves nothing :S

In My Little Pony, the Movie, and the subsequent television episodes, Shady's character could not be more different. Based on her So Soft cousin, Shady is shy, pessimistic, insecure, clumsy and totally lacking in any confidence. In fact, this is often the theme of the story, and she frequently believes herself to be unlucky. In French, her name was "Incognito" (self-explanatory), and in Quebec she was called "Petit Ombre" - little shadow. Both suggest a follower and not a leader.

Myself, I always prefer her stronger, secure comic-based persona. Like the pony's colour scheme, the UK Shady was stronger that way :)

SO SOFT SHADY (1985-6)

So Soft Shady appears more pastel due to her flocking, but even beneath the fur - I am told - she is not quite as vivid a shade of neon pink.