The Danish toy giant Lego has since the 1940’s been a hugely popular unisex toy. The success is down to the simplicity, with only your own imagination setting the limit on what to build. After a few challenging years, Lego, with its release of the ‘Research Institute’, finally puts girls in their place!
Lego Friends, a new line aimed at girls, was released by Lego in 2012. It included mini dolls, a pink and purple colour scheme in scenes from suburban life set in the fictional town of ‘Heartlake City’. With it Lego was hoping to attract more girls, but instead they received criticism for giving in to gender stereotypes.
We love Lego in this house, with both girls and my husband(!) building houses, entire villages and anything else in their imagination. When Friends was released the girls was attracted to the cover pictures. However as soon as the limited amount of purple and pink bricks was out of the box, it was very little to play with. They played instead with the dolls like they were Barbie dolls (the men in the series with short hair and tie look like Ken!) It lacked what makes Lego unique, it’s unisex style and endless opportunity to being creative.
The 165-piece Research Institute features a female palaeontologist, chemist and astronomer. The box cover shows the scientist mixing chemicals in a lab, building a T-Rex model and peering through a telescope -everything your little scientist would love to take part in! You can still order it, but as its out of stock, it’s a reported 30 day delivery time.
Could the new female figures be a response to the letter, which went viral via social media, written by a 7-year-old girl?
Never change a winning recipe, Lego. We want unisex and creative toys!