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A2 :Avengers the age of Ultron movie

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Regarding the lack of female presence... I think the worst examples are when they straight up leave off the female characters, like they don't even exist. It seems to happen mostly on the licensing items. Example: in the back of one of the FCBD Marvel books there is a Marvel Hot Wheels add. All the movie Avenges are there (even Hawkeye), but no Black Widow. Just straight up dropped her. And it wasn't like they were only showing the Avengers that there was cars for, since there was no Hawkeye.

Hasbro has been doing a great job getting more female toys out there. Almost 2 per series at this point in Marvel Legends! And there has always been great diversity in the Minimates brand. Other toy lines can't make the same claim though.

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There's still a mindset among even female licensing executives and retail buyers that girls aren't interested in these properties let alone toys aimed primarily at boys. It's sad. From my own professional and personal experience I can say females are huge fans of properties people think only appeal to males. (NASCAR, NBA, WWE, et al.)

How about toy manufacturers just make fun toys and anyone (anyone) who wants to play with them can simply play with them?

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In the comments section: "well why are there no black widow toys?"

Because you haven't mastered Google yet?

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This is the kind of thing that drives me crazy, I certainly sympathize with the fact that his daughter wanted a specific female character and there wasn't anything available, that's a shame. But to say that Marvel is having a huge problem getting female characters into toy form is just incorrect. And what bothers me about it is that people will read this article who don't look into it any further and they accept this incorrect information is accurate. And it propagates this idea that comic book merchandise is sexist. Are there examples that show there is still work to be done? Absolutely, the Hot Wheels story posted above is proof of that. But we have come a long, long way from when I was watching the Adam West Batman show and couldn't understand why I didn't have a Catwoman or Batgirl figure.

Edited by Valo487

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When I was younger, my brothers & their friends wouldn't let me play with them in anything that didn't have a girl in it. (Mostly because they didn't want me playing with their stuff. LOL)

I had Teela, I had Lady Jane (& Zartan's sister Zartanna), I had a mego WW, I had my mom's old Space 1999 people. Heck, I even had a Daisy Duke doll (& jeep). There have always, always been female figures. Sometimes, you just need to look.

Conversely, look at Frozen (which I have zero interest in). You see tons & tons of toys featuring the 2 chicks & the snowman. Where are the dolls of the 2 dudes?? I don't think I've ever seen any. Aladdin, Eric, Beast, Mulan's guy & Prince Charming all have dolls. So clearly the dudes don't matter to the story??

Off-topic, I saw the new Mad Max last nite. Weird, very weird, but Charlize gets more screen time than Tom Hardy. On top of this misogynistic groups are calling for male boycotting.

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My daughter lost interest in Disney Princess figures immediately after finding out there were so few princes. (A lot like real life, I suppose. "Get used to disappointment, kiddo.")

I still recall the moment my mother took me aside and cautioned me from playing with my Uhura figure in front of my father because he probably wouldn't like the idea of me playing with dolls. (He didn't care.)

Don't even get me started on Bronies.

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To me, I think a lot of it comes down to is there a reasonable representation of the property as a whole? Look at Age of Ultron. We got two waves, two TRU waves, an army builder box and an all-but confirmed box set coming, but there will still be characters and specific versions that don't make the cut. But a strong effort was made to cover all the major ones. And that's not cause for outcry, it's just the nature of business. It's only when a character is specifically ignored continuously that a second look is warranted, in my opinion.

I'm still very disappointed at how little Quicksilver was represented in merchandise overall. Especially considering....

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Kristoff does have a doll. I've seen it. But my daughters don't have him, and don't seem to care. They barely play with Sven or Olaf. But we have two Elsa's and probably need to get a third as an emergency backup. I think we have dolls for Beast and Prince Charming.

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Re: Frozen...

And see, that's a good example of the reverse. It goes BOTH ways, I mean it's not like toy manufactuers are sitting in an evil tower, cackling, "Mua ha ha, girls must play with princess dolls, boys must play with super heroes! And never shall one be sold to the other!" they just have... research. Sales figures. Decades of experience selling toy lines. And they make toys to follow suit with that data. Why do people not seem to grasp that?

Yes there are boys who want an Elsa or Olaf doll. Yes there are girls who want an Iron Man or Black Widow Action Figure. And for the most part... those items ARE available, and any modern free-thinking parent would buy them for their child. But I feel as though... people tend to believe there's some opressed majority out there that doesn't exist. Like EVERY little girl wants a Super Hero and EVERY little boy wants a Princess, which isn't the case. Frozen dolls will still be sold -mostly- to girls. Superhero action figures will still be sold -mostly- to boys. Exclusively? 100%? No! Certainly not. But to expect manufacturers to bend over backwards over-producing toys that aren't the most in-demand with their key sales demographic is... just dumb. imo.

There ARE figures of the female Marvel characters, they're just not heavily packed because that's not where most of the sales power lies for that line.


There ARE dolls of the male Disney characters, they're just not heavily packed because that's not where most of the sales power lies for that line.

My cousin, more or less tried to force "Boy" (notice my use of quotes) stuff on her daughter, because... that's what SHE (my cousin) wanted. She swore up and down, "My daughter won't wear dresses, or play with dolls or pink girly things" ... Guess how that worked out? Her daughter still likes dolls. Still wants dolls. Dresses. Ponies. Pink stuff. Oh, and she's in love with Frozen. And I think she has every right to want those things... as does any other child.

I feel like... the problem is less about what is/isn't available to kids and more about internet parents getting their shorts in a wad for the sake of it.

Sure Kristoff has a doll. But I'm betting a case of Frozen dolls is still packed about 6 Elsas, 5 Annas & 1 Kristoff... just like a case of Avengers is likely 6 Iron Man, 5 Cap & 1 Black Widow (I know, more characters in both cases. Simplifying to make a point). And that's BECAUSE Iron Man is always going to outsell Black Widow, just like Elsa is always going to outsell Kristoff. Boy. Girl. Doll. Action Figure. Doesn't really matter.

I'm betting Black Widow is a hell of alot better represented in Avengers Merch on the whole as a Female Hero in a "Male" line, than say, Hans is in Frozen, as a Male Villain in a "Female" line. But you don't see "Where the hell is all the Hans Merchandise!?" Articles on the internet.

As someone said earlier, I think what it should boil down to is reasonable representation of the property as a whole. And for the most part... with most toy lines these days... I think most properties ARE well-rounded. If a character doesn't get made in this internet-age... fans need only go online and bitch about it until he/she IS made. And that's not a phenomena that applies exclusively to male/female characters, just ANY character who... for whatever reason hasn't been made. Sales, demand, marketing, target demographics. Just look to the legacy of Kang on these very forums, sometimes a character just... doesn't make it for various reasons. And yes, being a female character in a line which markets mostly to boys can be one of those reasons, just as being a male character in a line that markets mostly to girls can. It is what it is.

I dunno. I'm not the wisest most all-knowing person on Earth, by any means... I just feel like... the internet, for all its pros, has... turned us as a society of bitchy, whiney, complain about-everything people. Finding problems places we don't need to go looking for them. Are there REAL gender equality problems in the world out there? Sure. Yes. And they should be addressed with care and respect.

But acting like it's a federal friggin' case that your son or daughter can't get a set of Honey-Lemon bed-sheets is... just stupid imo. Settle for the Baymax bed sheets and move the hell on. We ALL KNOW Baymax is where the selling power is, so why act surprised, dumbfounded & offended when the merch caters to him?

PS. Why the hell did Diamond not make Big Hero 6 minimates? Didn't occur to me til just now. I know the movie is highly Disney influenced, and wouldn't expect movie versions, but still... you'd think a comic-book themed boxed set or something? Weird...

Edited by Gillbob316

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Personally, I tend to give the people who actually have their jobs on the line a lot of slack when it comes to character selection. They aren't perfect but on balance I think they do a far better job than their critics would if given the chance to run a line.

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I always forget homestar is a lass. It's irrelevant, really. We're all collectors, and that's the important part

Here ,on this board .............'homestar17' is my Jiminy Cricket . Think of that what you will .

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I remember thinking the biggest offender of no female figures was Mattel's Avatar: The Last Airbender toys. Half the main characters are female (Katara and Toph), yet neither got a single figure. So aggravating. You also couldn't get female figures from Naruto.

As far as Hasbro's Age of Ultron figures go, the biggest problem is that the toys just suck. Just browsing TRU the other day, there are like three different scales and zero consistency within a scale. I got the 3.75" Scarlet Witch so I could use her accessories à la toy showdown. The single pack figures are horrible, with only something like 5 POA, while the two-pack exclusives are super articulated Marvel Universe quality. As far as I know you can't even get the entire team. Horrible.

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I no longer debate with people about how many female characters we've made. It is either "not enough" or simply not mainstream enough to affect overall perception. But toy sales are a lot more quantifiable than box office receipts.

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I can't believe people would even debate you on that, it's one thing if they are upset that the characters they want aren't getting made, but seriously. You guys made DARCY FROM THOR. We didn't just get the love interest, we got the love interest's friend. Name any other toy line that goes that deep.

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In the last few months I've had one thing reinforced for me several times: some people just want to be angry. It doesn't matter what the supposed cause, what sort of improvements are made, or what you do to try and fix things, some people will deliberately look for the negative, because that is all they want. You can't reason with them. The best you can do is just move on and not let it get you down.

And I think it should be noted that DST consistently offers the absolute best, most comprehensive movie tie-in assortments of anyone. That's a fact.

Edited by Glantern

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We have four different versions of Psylocke. Only two are ninja version.

I'm happy ;)

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I can't believe people would even debate you on that, it's one thing if they are upset that the characters they want aren't getting made, but seriously. You guys made DARCY FROM THOR. We didn't just get the love interest, we got the love interest's friend. Name any other toy line that goes that deep.

Along the same lines, we didn't get Darcy's male intern either. And we got Lady Sif (twice) without the full Warriors Three. And Aunt May (twice) with Uncle Ben only once.

Which always makes me think of the grocery-shopping Spidey gif. :)

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Same goes for Pepper, every movie that's featured Widow has made her, we got Peggy Carter.


The only reason for the lack of female diversity is because of Marvel itself, not because of DST.

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Getting a particular character who happens to be female in abundance when compared to a male character isn't an accurate representation of the problem that is being talked about.

The issue doesn't begin an end at being able to find female action figures *somewhere*. The issue comes from the perceived presence of that character. Individual female figures don't sell as well? Fine - i can't force toy makers to produce more of them. Short-packing Gamora/Capt. Marvel/ She-Hulk is acceptable.

The problem comes when female characters are not given as much exposure as other characters in ALL FORMATS.
In the example of Gamora: she is a central figure in the film, she is one of 5 main protagonists. She is also the direct link to two of the 3 main antagonists of the film. She is given as much screen time as the other 4 protagonists, and plays as important a role in the film. With that in mind,
here's some merchandise from the film:

uWBzjxo.jpgguardians-of-the-galaxy-16-inch-blue-bac

GuardiansOfTheGalaxyShirt.png

dtmjkfbgfgd2nrs4rl4i.jpg



In each of these cases, someone has made the conscious decision to NOT include 1/5 of the main cast, based on gender. This kind of exclusion actually contributes to a climate of sexism that we can't even notice sometimes as consumers. We just accept it and don't even think about it. Excluding the female character becomes the standard.
There is some-one in the marketing department who thinks that placing Gamora on a product will result in lower sales. Do any of you chaps have children? If so, how many of them are boys? Of those boys, how many would refuse to wear a back-pack or t-shirt of GotG because 'it has a girl on it'?

Then there's this:

Crosspost_Where_1407790149_thumb.jpg

Every member of the Guardians gets a nice big close-up face-shot on the side of the merch stand.... except our girl Gamora. No-one has to buy the merch crate. It's purely decorative and an advertiser. There's no harm in including her as well, is there? Still, we're excluding a valuable cast member because of gender.

We're not just talking about being able to find a female action figure. We're talking about visibility in the media over-all. There is something to be angry about here.

I'm not suggesting that DST aren't producing enough female action figures. In fact - They did the right thing (imho) by making sure they included Gamora on their GotG package branding. And i'm pleased to see Black Widow appearing on the TRU Age of Ultron packaging.
However, she didn't appear on the Avengers 1 branding from DST (although, neither did Hawkeye, to be fair).
And there is no female character on the Comic wave branding either.

Part of the problem is that it's a subconscious thing too. It's not just the cases where someone is deliberately excluded (like Gamora), it's also the cases where someone doesn't think to include a female character. I do not for a second think that anyone at DST said 'Let's NOT include BW on our branding, despite her being a major character'. But we have to ask ourselves 'Why doesn't someone suggest adding Storm/Captain Marvel/Black Widow to this promo image?'.

In an ideal world, no-one would have to suggest the inclusion of women. It would just happen. Unfortunately, we have a few thousand years of entrenched patriarchy to over-come. And that's no easy feat. The up-side is, i think we will get there.... but someone has to be out there, making noise and asking questions.



/rant

Edited by Nessex

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That I agree with, it's much more odious when the ONLY character absent is the one woman, that sort of thing completely justified that reaction. My only issue is that people confuse the fact that there ARE legitimate issues with the idea that ALL issues they find are legitimate.

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I think it is a conscious decision made based on real or perceived market forces. Girls probably aren't going to sell as well to pre-pubescent boys as males will. And I think it works both ways. My oldest daughter has very little interest in toys based off of males. The only one I think she ever asked for so far is Beast from Beauty and the Beast, and that was on a whim. She always hones in on the females in movies or toys or whatever as the ones she likes best. Because those are the ones she can more easily relate to, probably. In that sense, I don't know if I see it as a sexist issue. I think it's just natural for little kids to be drawn to someone they can more easily relate to on a very basic level.

But sexism does legitimately exist in Hollywood and elsewhere (look no further than the shelf-life for even formerly top tier actresses like Julia Roberts, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Rene' Zellwegger, or Faye Dunaway vs. their male superstar counterparts), and it could be that this is having some effect on merchandising. But when you're talking toys for small kids, I'm inclined to chalk it up to a very basic cost-benefit calculation. And these companies aren't tasked with being socially responsible or helping to make kids think more progressively. They're tasked with making money.

DST's primary audience has historically been older geek collectors, right? And from that perspective, it makes more sense to me that they would be more open to including figures of females, and more obscure characters here or there, as those are things these kinds of collectors will have an interest in, by and large.

Edited by karamazov80

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But why do you think your daughter is drawn to female characters in films? Why can she relate to them more? Is it because she knows that they have ovaries? Or is she perhaps taught by the world around her (her friends, her teachers, the TV, etc..) that she is a girl and that means that she should like dresses and princesses and dancing the way that boys are taught to like tools and wrestlers and trucks?

Don't get me wrong, there is no problem with little girls liking princesses or with boys liking super-heroes, but what happens when a little boy likes princesses or a little girl likes super-heroes and they feel like they're not supposed to because those products are marketed at a 'different gender'?

Wouldn't it be cool if we didn't make such a big deal over the minor differences between boys and girls?

Part of the problem is that we're not teaching our kids that pink is for everyone & Tonka trucks are for everyone. That's something that we as everyday people can do.

The other part of the problem is convincing manufacturers and marketers the same thing. That battle is gonna be a lot harder.

And you are spot on about sexism in Hollywood. You really can't argue with the paycheques of actors in their 40's, 50's and beyond as evidence for the sexism inherent in cinema.

EDIT: Sorry K80 - my rant is at the world, not at you. i hope it didn't come across that way.

Edited by Nessex

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I had avoided this thread because I couldn't accurately word my opinion on the matter but luckily Nessex has done it for me, albeit unknowingly. So I'll add my other thoughts.

To say that there isn't a problem with sexism in the toy industry is simply wrong, and yes it does go both ways. While we are very lucky that DST is a prime example of how it should be done, and I have the utmost respect for them for consistently providing female characters (particularly in movie waves), it is worth considering that not everyone wants or even knows about Minimates. While I wish more people bought Minimates and they were more popular to say that there's no problem with the industry just because there's Black Widow and Scarlet Witch (I'm trying to keep this Avengers specific for now) Minimates is just silly, because a large part of the market either isn't seeing or doesn't want those figures.

In my opinion, and of course I could be very wrong about this, the main points of this market particularly for a younger audience is the Marvel Legends and those odd small 5 poa figures, and you cannot deny that there is a huge problem when it comes to equal representation in those fields (I'd also like to note that there is an equally large problem when it comes to figures of POC). Obviously it is largely due to the movie industry itself but looking at Marvel and the recent Mad Max the representation problem is very slowly being changed.

This last bit is just about me really, not the overall argument. When it boils down to it most of all I just think it's silly that a company like Hasbro has ignored the potential of these female characters simply on the basis of them being female. Admittedly I am bitter at not being able to get a Scarlet Witch legends figure (quicksilver and vision too). And before anyone says it, I don't think the comic based figures equally count. Sure there's a comic based scarlet witch figure, but can you honestly say she at all represents the movie version? At this point in time it's the movie version that people are looking for.

TLDR: while we're lucky DST isn't necessarily part of the problem, that doesn't exclude the existence of a problem.

Edited by mini nugget

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The other part of the problem is convincing manufacturers and marketers the same thing. That battle is gonna be a lot harder.

That's the easiest part: Buy the stuff that does get made. Hasbro was able to sell the female figures they made last year so they tried it again this year. Based on Amazon prices and the amount of Scarlet Witch figures I'm seeing on the pegs I'm not confident that was a great idea, but it's much more likely they responded to dollars than claims that society is brainwashing children.

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