As Time aptly said, it may be time for Mattel to release a ‘Retirement Barbie’.
In January, the company reported a 59 percent decrease in fourth-quarter profits, thanks in part to declining Barbie sales.
But Mattel has come back with a vengeance, releasing superhero dolls that – shock horror – don’t have Barbie’s unrealistic body measurements and don’t wear scantily-clad outfits.
The dolls feature DC Comic superheroes like Batgirl, Supergirl and Wonder Woman.
The range will hit stores in early 2016, alongside a partnership with Lego and an animated TV show.
Designer Christine Kim says athletes and gymnasts were the inspiration for the doll’s body types.
Kim designed the dolls after undergoing months of feedback from young girls.
Some of those girls interviewed told the company the initial design of the dolls was too “girly” or didn’t look like they’d be able to fight.
Simon Ragoonanan, who runs the popular Man vs Pink blog that documents his adventures bringing up his daughter, now almost four, told The Guardian the dolls are a good thing.
“When they first announced it I was a bit skeptical because they looked sort of Disney-ish, but I’ve really come round,” he says.
“I think they offer young kids a different way into the superhero world, because most of the movies are too old and very serious, whereas these dolls are active and confident.”
The dolls receiving a positive response comes at a critical time for Mattel, which is about to lose the rights to figures from the movie Frozen to rival Hasbro in 2016.
Here is a selection of other dolls that are defying gender stereotypes:
1. IAmElemental dolls
2. Lottie dolls
3. Lammily dolls