We’ve started a conversation about the lack of female action figures in today’s marketplace, but what can we do to change the norm? We know that the market won’t change unless toy companies hear from us, their customers. Now is the time to reach out to those companies.
Here is an email template that can be copied and pasted into any contact form or posted to your social media site with the hastags #JusticeGirls and the names of the companies you are trying to reach (i.e. #Target, #Hasbro, ect). Please take a moment and email one of your favorite toy manufacturers or retailers below:
Email Hasbro here. (Star Wars action figures, Disney, Marvel) They make you create an account, but it is quick and painless. If you don’t want to create an account, hashtag them on Facebook/Twitter.
Email Mattel here. (Star Wars miscellaneous, DC comics)
Email Spinmaster here. (Star Wars miscellaneous)
Email Lego here. (Star Wars)
Email Target here.
Email Barnes and Noble here.
Email Walmart here.
Email Costco here.
The best way to contact Toys-R-Us is through Facebook, Twitter or LiveChat on their website. The email contact form on their site has been taken down.
How do we define a female action figure?
We define a female action figure character using three attributes. These attributes make any action figure attractive to children and parents and, while there are plenty of male action figures currently in the marketplace that follow these attributes, there are very few female ones. We want to see an increase in female action figures with these attributes to match the wants of girls and their parents across the country and a more equal distribution of gender in action figure production based on character importance in television and film.
- The figure must be playable- It is true that there is quite a few collectible female action figures on the market. These, however, are meant for display, not active kid play. We want more of Power Kick Black Widow and Desert Fighter Rey and less sit-on-the-desk Brienne of Tarth (not that she’s not a great character, its just that not many five-year-olds are allowed to watch Game of Thrones).
- The figure must be geared for children ages 3-10- Again, there are a lot of amped-up, barely-dressed lady figures out there. And, while those might be snapped up by geeky high-schoolers, they are going to be passed over by parents (I don’t want my daughter to dress like that/son to play with that!) and five year olds of both genders (Ewww…!). We want an accurate representation of the heroes our children admire on the big and small screen.
- The figure must be a girl and must appeal to girls, but not does not necessarily need to be feminine- There a lot of girl-geared figures and toys in the stores. This means that a toy company either took a boy’s toy concept, turned it pink, dumped a bunch of glitter on it, and put it in the fairy princess aisle or created a ‘girl-next-door’ figure who rides horses, does gymnastics, and plays with her pet dog Giggles. Not that there is anything wrong with boy and girls liking My Little Pony type characters, but it is a mistake to think that giving a girl a pink doll will replace the need for a true female action figure that, while not pink and purple, will appeal to girls. This can be easily fixed by pulling already existing characters from film and television and creating relatable action figures. This can also be reflected on the retail level by placing a selection of female action figures in the traditional ‘girls’ section of the store.