I was talking with my friend yesterday about what to get her son (my nephew) for his Birthday. She told me he was really into the Avengers right now (I nearly cried!) and that even though he's only turning two, he somehow developed an obsession with them and knows each character by name. I couldn't be prouder!
So as we continued talking about what to get him, I asked if he had any of the action figures? She sent me the following picture of the set they bought him for his Birthday:
Friends, I must say, my favorite store of all time has completely let me down!
Target currently does not make either of those female heroes available to purchase individually. Black Widow only comes in a different set with the other male characters and Scarlet Witch isn't available in stores (at least not mine) at all. This really bothered me because Target had recently made a big deal about how they were going to stop segregating toys by gender. No longer would their aisles say "Boys" or "Girls" as they recognized both male and female children liked a variety of characters and toys. Great right? Well, not if you're a fan of super heroes apparently.
I decided to Tweet Target right then and there because, as you'll note in the picture, what really killed me, was the fact that Black Widow was clearly represented in the stores display to attract kids to the toys, so why the heck can't these same kids get her action figure??
I also walked further down the aisles and noted that DCs character, Wonder Woman was sold in the same fashion. You can't get the Amazon on her own, she only comes in a set with the other male heroes. Again, I called bullcrap and tweeted the following image to Target:
I know you're thinking, "Hey, there's empty pegs". True, and I did give Target the benefit of the doubt and checked the tags for those empty pegs- sadly, they were not for Wonder Woman figures.
I think it's also important to note that Black Widow has been in more of the Avenger films then any of the other characters, she's kind of a big deal guys.....
To their credit, Target replied to my Tweet almost immediately and I hope they remain true to their word:
But I thought I'd share this with my Facebook friends as well because I know many have children who love the current films, television shows and comics and wanted to know what they had to say about this. I was not disappointed:
Do you see where I'm coming from? I mean, it's 2016. Target and toy companies in general are missing out on an incredibly big market. And for what reason? Even boys want to play with the female heroes, they're a part of the gang!
But please pay special attention to the comment my friend Amy made won't you? Her daughter LOVES the Hulk! She also loves hockey and for some reason, it's still next to impossible to find sports gear and comic book clothing in the girls section. And if you're lucky enough to stumble across some, guess what? That crap is pink and covered in glitter! What the shit is that??
I may not have read every comic book out there, but I watch Agents of Shield, Jessica Jones, Daredevil, Arrow, The Flash, Agent Carter and every single comic book film including all from the XMen universe (I grew up watching the cartoon, Rogue will always be my favorite heroine) and there ain't no pink up in any of that!
Why? Why do companies and designers do this to us? I talked to one of my coworkers about this today as well. She repairs cars and likes to hunt and fish and for some reason 50% of the gear she finds in the women's section is pink. What exactly is pink camo going to do for you in the woods?? This needs to stop.
Now, This isn't a rant against pink. Currently my lunch bag, water bottle and gel nail polish are all shades of pink. My sister and I had our rooms painted pink when we were little (my progressive mother was very distraught about it). This is about boys and girls being forced into these boxes, these stereotypes since birth and it's not okay.
Months ago a friend posted about how she was struggling to find clothes for the daughter she's expecting:
I couldn't believe it. I messaged her right away telling her to try a different Target or Target online because I had recently been shopping for baby clothes and recalled they had a wide variety of colors. I had been shopping for my nephews at the time though, so I might have misspoke. Fore, on my next trip to my beloved store, I thought it would be nice to pop into the babies clothing aisle and pick out some sweet, non-pink items for my friend. Once again, I found myself being severely let down. I found lots of clothes that weren't pink, however they all came in a set with other items that were. Picked out a cute top, the pants it came with were pink. Nice onesie, the other two onesies in the set were different shades of pink. Thankfully I managed to find a couple of things for her but still, one of the sets I sent along did have a pink item paired with it, for which I vehemently apologized.
The struggle is real people and I didn't realize just how real it was until I started really looking.
I didn't see it because it wasn't so bad when I was little, at least, I don't think so.
I watched the Ninja Turtles: April wore a yellow jumpsuit.
XMen: Storm was in white or black, Rogue in yellow and green, Jean Gray in blue.
Sailor Moon: All wore different colors, none in pink except for the little girl who was one of the characters' daughters.
Star Trek: No pink
Ronin Warriors: No pink
Star Wars: Leia wore white and the occasional khaki. Yes, she wore that freaking gold bikini but girlfriend shot a bunch of dudes and choked out her captor in it too so your argument is moot.
Sea Quest: No pink
VR Troopers: No pink
Yes, I know Power Rangers had the Pink Ranger but they literally used every color of the rainbow so I'mma let them have that one. You'll remember that the evil Queen wasn't rocking pink though, so there.
You see where I'm going with this?
Every few years people bring up the "pink tax". A phrase used to describe how women are typically charged more for the same items men use. Usually our stuff comes in pinks and purples but a razor is a razor; shaving cream is shaving cream, etc. You going to tell me pink dye is a dollar more then black dye? Yeah, bull. But it's all around us, everyday and we let it happen.
So I responded to Target with this in mind and started a hashtag that I hope catches on:
We don't need pink camo, we need clothes that are durable and appropriate for what we're doing that fit us properly.
We don't need a picture of the Hulk printed on a pink cotton tshirt. We like our characters the way they are because of who they are, not because they rock a costume that appeals to us. That only matters when we decide which team to root for when sports are on (kidding)
This isn't some feminist movement, this is a nerd asking those who sell me nerd stuff and happily take my nerd money, to give me what I want.
I hope to have girls one day and I don't think I should have to search EBay or have something custom made on Etsy because big companies can't get this stuff right. I love super heroes, I love television shows of all kinds, I love music of all varieties and I love every color of the rainbow. It would be awesome if I the things I bought in stores reflected all of that for every age and every gender.