A pair of mothers who were disillusioned with the variety of action figures for young girls have come up with their own line of badass action figures.
Julie Kerwin and Dawn Nadeau got tired of sorting through all the hyper-sexualized action figures in the toy aisle and decided to try making their own. Via Fast Company:
Nadeau and Kerwin noticed that there were plenty of female dolls to choose from in what they call the pink "girl ghetto" of toy stores, but hardly any four-inch-tall, plastic heroines with articulated joints. So, last fall, Nadeau and Kerwin, who met at through their kids' jazz class, decided to strike out on their own with a line of female action figures personifying seven elements of courage: bravery, energy, honesty, industry, enthusiasm, persistence, and fear. Instead of bust sizes bigger than their heads, the $8.99 IAmElemental figures have powerful-looking quads. Nadeau and Kerwin also worked with design firm Eleventy Plex to erase canyon-like buttcracks, while giving one of the figures flames shooting out of her shoulders.
The two entrepreneurs called their Kickstarter campaign, which just wrapped, a "hypothesis" to see if demand for that kind of thing would even stick. And it did. At the end of the 30-day campaign, IAmElemental had raised 465% of its funding goal.
There's still a lot of stiff competition in the toy market, but Kerwin said they're focused less on making billions of millions of dollars and more on "concept philosophy."
Kerwin and Nadeau stress that the concept wasn't to create an anti-Barbie—a perennial campaign that crops up every few years, to mixed success. Instead, they feel that if their kids—both boys and girls between the ages of six and 16—are going to play with action figures, there should be cool ones representing women, too.
"Of course we're feminists," Kerwin says. "We're women who believe that women can set out to do anything they want to do. And that there should be no impediment to that."
These certainly aren't the first action figures of their kind, but the concept is pretty cool. Too bad it's pretty much a long shot that major toy companies will pick up on something like this anytime in the near future. Just look how hard it was it was to get fucking Princess Leia products for the new Star Wars movie.
Images via I Am Elemental.