A former Marvel employee on Disney’s desired demographics (aka not girls and women) and what we can do about it. None of us are ignorant that Disney bought Marvel and Lucasfilm for further access the ‘boys market,’ but this is a nice overview of how licensing works, and who we have to contact to show there is a demand for more Gamora, Black Widow and Princess Leia merchandise.
UPDATE: Apparently the figure is only being delayed “due to a production issue with Princess Leia’s robe.” She’ll be back on shelves “later this year.”
So hot on the heels of the last dustup over the lack of female figures, Jedi Temple Archive reports that Hasbro has pulled the Ceremonial Princess Leia figures from Wave 7 and Wave 8 of the Black Series, replacing her with… A stormtrooper and a clone trooper.
Yakface, one of the first to bring this to the attention of the wider fandom, started the #whereisleia and #wewantleia hashtags.
Devin Faraci at Badass Digest wrote about looking for action figures for his niece, the latest in a familiar refrain:
The fact that Hasbro is canceling one of its few Leia figures means that they’re only keeping the status quo. Would more girl toys sell now, as the demographics of fandom shifts dramatically? No one can know when the toys don’t exist. I wanted to go and spend my money on female characters for my goddaughter, but I was not offered the opportunity. Young female fans should be able to walk into Toys ‘R Us and find a toy based on the largest and most popular stories in our pop culture that speaks to them. It’s as simple as that, and when the only option is a sexualized and subservient variant – why would they want to buy that? Why would their parents want to buy that for them?
Sure, there’s that Ahsoka figure coming and it seems like Boushh disguise Leia is still on, but canceling any of the few Leia figures they were hyping just over a month ago isn’t exactly fostering good faith in their intentions.
“Hasbro feels they have released plenty of female characters in the line.” That’s the money quote, from a Toy Fair Q&A with collector site Jedi Temple Archives. Granted, it doesn’t seem to be an exact quote, but the sentiment is pretty clear in any case. UPDATE: The answer has since been revised, at Hasbro’s request, to namedrop figures released over the past several years – that Mara Jade figure came out in 2013 – but the problem still remains. The Mary Sue has a great response to this:
It’s not that there aren’t any female characters in their line, because of course that would be untrue—it’s that they clearly take a backseat to the male ones which Hasbro thinks will sell better to boys.
Hasbro also said have no more Leia figures planned at the moment. (Though I doubt that includes The Force Awakens, which they are very much not talking about yet. But then again, who knows?) Asajj Ventress is also in the “no current plans” category.
Does our only hope for more than a paltry handful of women figures rest solely in the hands of the new film? We know there are multiple women in the cast, but such is the case with Rebels, and that rollout certainly hasn’t been without issues. (Though the recent issues finding figures – all figures – is likely due to an ongoing labor dispute at west coast seaports.)
#WheresHera? (and sometimes Sabine.) Guess who’s still missing from lots of Rebels merchandise? I guess folks really love us harping on this stuff, huh?
Today marks the launch of the Kickstarter for Athena’s Daughters 2, a collection of short speculative fiction by diverse women about diverse women. In Athena’s Daughters 2, publisher Silence in the Library set out for the second time to produce an anthology where women were involved in all aspects of the creative process, from the artists to the authors, the editors to the project managers. We hope that you will support this exciting short story collection of science fiction and fantasy by some wonderful writers.
A year ago, Silence in the Library ran a Kickstarter for the first Athena’s Daughters anthology. That successful campaign funded the first anthology, a companion anthology, Apollo’s Daughters (stories about women, but written by men), and the production for Athena’s Daughters 2. For Athena’s Daughters 2, Silence in the Library had an open call for submissions.
I was thrilled and honored to have a story accepted to this amazing anthology. Athena’s Daughters 2 marks my first published fiction since the Star Wars stories I wrote with Club Jade co-founder Chris Cassidy for Tales of the New Republic and Star Wars Gamer.
Athena’s Daughters 2 has many other ties to Club Jade. CJer Elizabeth Bridges also has a story featured in the anthology, her first original fiction story!
Janine Spendlove, also a CJer, co-edits Athena’s Daughters 2. Janine, an active KC-130 pilot in the United States Marine Corps, is the author of the War of the Seasons trilogy. She co-founded Geek Girls Run with, among others, BrightCopperPenny, another CJer, and maker of Penny Blossoms. If you check out the Kickstarter page, you’ll see the special Penny Blossom that BrightCopperPenny designed just for Athena’s Daughters 2; it’s available both as a $15 add-on and for a $22 pledge!
Silence of the Library has published many CJ alums and friends, including Janine, Bryan Young, Ron Garner, Mike Stackpole, Tim Zahn, and the late Aaron Allston.
I hope you’ll click through to read more about this amazing project and watch the hilarious musical video that accompanies it, complete with filking, chorus line kicks, and Vegas-style showgirls! Athena’s Daughters 2 needs your support.
The problem with pink armor. Tracy Gardner on Rebels, Disney and gender riles. I’m hoping we see Sabine repaint her armor every couple episodes or at least every season (think of the marketing potential!) but I do find somewhat disturbing that she and Hera look like they’ll very easily fall into the ‘love interest’ and ‘mom’ roles in regards to Ezra.
Why marketers fear the female geek. It’s an older article (as well as a gaming one,) but it checks out. For instance: “We create opportunity by being vocal. We voice our frustration with how things currently are and progressive marketers will see an unsatisfied customer base… We have to keep being visible.”
The Hasbro panel at SDCC seems to have been, well, a Hasbro panel. Dan Brooks liveblogged it for StarWars.com, and above you see the female figures: The Black Series Medal Ceremony Leia will be in the 3.75-inch line, and for Rebels, Hera and Sabine each come in two-packs with troopers.
Is harassment at comic conventions really that big a problem? Yes. Yes it is. In this survey, 25% of the respondents said they have been sexually harassed in the industry. Twenty five percent.