Toy Designer Christine Kim heads up the daunting task of reinvigorating the superhero brand for girls, which will be designed by women and not men. Groundbreaking stuff, we know. Whodathunk that women would have the best insight in making super heroic dolls for little girls?
Did you know that Wonder Woman appeared just three years after Superman made his debut 75 years ago? She’s been the symbol of female empowerment for years, especially since Lynda Carter donned the colors of the legendary Amazonian princess in the 70s. And yet, her boxom appearance hasn’t changed all that much. It’s okay for us older ladies, but are prudish population hardly thinks her skimpy appearance is ideal for what young girls should strive to be, let alone focus on.
Partnered with Warner Bros.’ DC Comics, Mattel are FINALLY readjusting their aim at little girls — starting at age six — with the DC SuperHero Girls line. The first wave of toys launches this spring with 12-inch dolls, six-inch action figures, and gadgets such as a Batgirl utility belt.
But that’s not all, Mattel has actually done some research in the designing of these dolls and action figures. As Bloomberg explains it:
Researchers found that girls didn’t want the superheroes to be too girly, a problem with the first round of dolls that Mattel developed. One girl complained that the toys looked “more pretty than superhero,” and another pointed out that Poison Ivy’s scarf would only get in the way during a fight. Wonder Woman, meanwhile, was too skinny and not athletic enough.
Kim, the toy designer, instructed her team to use gymnasts, dancers, and basketball players as primers for sculpting more muscular versions of the dolls and action figures. “We wanted to have this very strong, toned body, but keeping in mind that they are still in high school, so they’re not fully mature yet,” Kim says. “But they still look like they can save the day instead of being saved.” They also stuck with existing colors, leaving Supergirl’s cape red instead of shifting to pink.