Tag Archives: Barbie

Gender Stereotypes and Children: Stop Gendering Toys!

It’s like something from my childhood imagination! Created by Proximity BCN with production by Post23 for Christmas last year, this ad for Audi Spain goes way beyond a whimsical animation. At first glimpse, one would assume this is an advert for a toy store in Spain.
The animation is an attempt raise awareness regarding gender-specific toys – an important message that plenty of other kids brands have attempted to explore. The campaign was accompanied the hashtag #CambiemosElJuego (“Let’s change the game”) to start a discussion about the topic online.

Eva Santos, Creative Director at Proximity says:

There is a growing trend for brands to communicate what they are all about and how they intend to improve people’s lives.

So, this is an experiment rather than Proximitie’s beliefs?… Weird statement. Anyway, Audi Spain rep Ignacio Gonzalez sums up the idea more eloquently:

“The Doll That Chose to Drive” is the brand’s way of helping to promote a more egalitarian social model … starting with boys and girls, tomorrow’s drivers.

This topic is something I’ve explored a lot (especially at university) – the gendering of children’s toys being limiting, and frankly archaic. Smyths Toy Superstore followed the genderless toys notion, featuring a cartoon boy in princess fancy dress (although the ad is pretty crappy itself):

Smyths were highly praised for the ‘If I Were A Toy’ advert for breaking gender stereotypes, but this wasn’t the first time a kids’ ad had the support of gender-variant consumers – Barbie released a Moschino Barbie (costing $150…. what-the-f!) in 2015, alongside an advert for Mattel featuring an adorable boy. For the first time ever, a boy was been featured in a Barbie commercial:

The list could go on! More and more, I’m seeing both girls and boys sharing their toys and blurring the gender lines in adverts, ignoring gendered products forced upon them by society’s notion of gender. It’s a very bizarre concept considering consumerism and mass-consumption of gendered products are entirely created by social constructs! The strict divide in gender when it comes to children is something adopted by familiarity – they don’t come out wearing gendered clothes, asking for a pretty pink pony.

Here’s an image by one of my favourites, Barbara Kruger, which is think is very apt for this topic:

1440_shop-therefore-i-am

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Barbie: Imagine the Possibilities

Mattel launched the “You Can Be Anything” campaign last year and have continued with the same marketing strategy with their new viral campaign for Barbie. The campaign, by BBDO San Francisco, focuses less on Barbie as a product and her new accessories, and more on the adorable imagination of the young girls.

The spot shows girls playing out what they want to be when they grow up, which were chosen by each of the young actresses. What gives this campaign even more of an “aww”-factor is that it was filmed unscripted, with the girls playing out their dreams in front of unsuspecting adults – hidden cameras captured real reactions to girls imagining what they might one day become.

For over 56 years, Barbie has inspired imaginations and encouraged girls on their journey to self-discovery. From Mermaid to Movie Star, Pet Vet to Police Officer, Fashionista to Fairy Princess, Barbie continues to celebrate the belief that You Can Be Anything

As a girl who was a huge Barbie fan, this ad certainly put a smile on my face. I also like that at the end of the ad they aren’t flashing some ridiculously expensive new Barbie school set-up you can buy for $300 – the homemade cardboard lecture theatre ads a sweet sense of imagination.

 

Tagged , , , , , ,