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Friends - New female theme 2012?

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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby onions » Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:02 am

one more:

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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby onions » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:20 pm

i guess i'm not the only one that's none too happy with the friends line.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/trending-no ... 58897.html
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby ufjason » Sat Dec 24, 2011 6:03 pm

Just spotted "Stephanie's Convertible" at target. I took a pic but my phone just erased all of my images when I hooked it up to the PC. The cost was 14.99 for 130 pieces.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Coret » Sat Dec 24, 2011 10:28 pm

The thing I don't get is everyone bashing Lego for trying to get the demographic of girls that don't play with Lego. Because for every girl out there that plays with the normal sets there are many that won't touch them.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Flynn » Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:41 am

I think the problem is not them trying to appeal to the female demographic, it's them doing it in such a sloppy and overdone way that it almost makes them seem, well, sexist. It's one thing to be increasing the male/female ratio in City sets and quite another to devote a whole line to something that feels more in place with the Polly Pockets crowd of shoppers.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Coret » Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:32 am

But isn't that the demographic they are trying to get? The Polly Pocket type girls make up at least half of the market. They aren't going to win them over by just adding extra girls to regular sets. Everybody on here doesn't test the market or see what Lego is missing out on. Instead we sit back and say "I wouldn't have done that because my daughter who has been raised around regular Lego sets doesn't want them." Or the worse alternative being the people that say how bad they are even though this isn't marketed to them. Lego isn't asking the AFOL community on this one for a reason. Look at all the flak the Ninjago stuff got, and yet it succeeded because it hit the right spot with kids. It just gets alittle annoying when half the themes designed for kids just gets so bad mouthed.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Flynn » Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:19 pm

Well, I think in this case it's the manner in which the theme is presented and designed that makes it seem awfully sexist. They probably could've done a very nice female-oriented line (or at the very least gender-neutral) without changing up the minifigure, sloshing it all in pinkish purple, and calling it something like "Friends". It just seems a very lazy way to try to appeal to that particular demographic.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Marty » Mon Dec 26, 2011 12:40 am

I for one agree, Lego needed to do a better girl's theme, having a daughter myself I found it extremely hard to buy the Lego product for my 7 year old, apart from Spongbob & Harry Potter there wasn't much out there in Lego that interested her.
This shows promise, and I can see where some of you think it's a stereo-type on women, but see it for what it is, a girl's building set. It's not trying to change Lego, it's just trying to reach a market that has mostly been over looked.
Give it a chance, and if Lego want's to expand the idea, try looking to Mary Poppins, The Lion, Witch & the Wardrobe, Alice, Peterpan, and Red riding hood.
People buy heaps of plastic toys & dolls based on these fairy tales & movies, so why not Lego?
I think it will do well, regards Marty
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby ufjason » Mon Dec 26, 2011 4:33 am

Where the monster line will fail for sheer crappy designs, this friends theme will succeed. If you actually look at the sets, they're pretty cool. The convertible set I saw had potential and great parts. If they include enough bricks, girls can recreate all kinds of settings and with girls, it's all about the accessories.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Tomahawker » Sat Dec 31, 2011 1:27 pm

There is a new Friends commercial posted on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEbJQmiZ ... er&list=UL

Some nice houses shown in Heartlake City, including what looks like a 4954 Town House at the end of the street. It also looks like there is a "manfig" or two coming in some of the larger sets.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby legomason » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:14 am

Seems like this line is a success! I've seen a couple stores sold out of all but the small $5.99 and $9.99 sets of which there were more of. I saw a dad take his daughter over to show them to her and a woman carrying three different boxes to the checkout.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby crazybirdman » Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:22 am

Marty wrote:I for one agree, Lego needed to do a better girl's theme, having a daughter myself I found it extremely hard to buy the Lego product for my 7 year old, apart from Spongbob & Harry Potter there wasn't much out there in Lego that interested her.


ya gotta remember, the theme isn't really for girls that already play with LEGO.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Igginz » Sat Feb 25, 2012 7:42 pm

Flynn wrote:I think the problem is not them trying to appeal to the female demographic, it's them doing it in such a sloppy and overdone way that it almost makes them seem, well, sexist. It's one thing to be increasing the male/female ratio in City sets and quite another to devote a whole line to something that feels more in place with the Polly Pockets crowd of shoppers.

Perceived sexism aside, this theme was developed with some serious research and sociological investigation. My girlfriend, who is not a super "girly" girl, apart from being into fashion and the Sims, loves these sets. I don't think its sexist to effectively hit your demographic. Is it sexist that TLG puts minifig guns into sets that are targeted to boys?
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby emmtwosix » Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:57 pm

I understand both sides of the argument to some extent and think it can go both ways. This was touched on a little bit earlier in this thread, but weren't Paradisa & Belville kinda the same thing? Does anyone know how they were perceived when they were released and how well they did? It doesn't really seem like new territory, and I think this line at least incorporates some of the more basic building ideas of LEGO fairly well. The biggest difference I see between Friends and the older "girl-oriented" lines is the new minifigs, and even Belville had the more doll-like figures. I wonder what the public awareness of the older lines is like and if that information would change some perceptions.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby BrickBits » Fri Mar 02, 2012 6:08 pm

I'm female, I'm disgusted. Guys get to be superheroes, girls have to run pony-popstar-cake shops? Really LEGO? It wouldn't hurt so much if it didn't feel like such betrayal from a company I love.

But I love Star Wars (so does my daughter!), and so I am apparently not the target demographic. But I also don't want any of my children, sons or daughters, getting the message that fighting is for boys and beauty salons are for girls. I want both to have both, in moderation (if they all got beauty salon obsessed, I have to admit I'd be disappointed). As other posters have pointed out, more female characters in the regular sets, please. And that includes the strong female characters in the PotC, HP, LotR, and SW lines. (They're getting better with Star Wars, in part because of greater female Jedi presence in Clone Wars, in part because they've been making sets long enough they are running out of 'exclusive' characters to make! ;) ).

And on the more of Gender & LEGOs, have fun playing with the LEGO advertising mash-up:

http://www.genderremixer.com/lego/
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Draykov » Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:00 pm

Igginz wrote:I don't think its sexist to effectively hit your demographic.


I think that's a pretty good summation. Some people aren't seeing past the marketing and are having knee-jerk reactions.

BrickBits wrote:I'm female, I'm disgusted. Guys get to be superheroes, girls have to run pony-popstar-cake shops? Really LEGO? It wouldn't hurt so much if it didn't feel like such betrayal from a company I love.


I've been very interested in this discourse. As previously mentioned, I have a young daughter myself. I'm still not sure I get the disgust and the appall some people seem to express. I've been catching up on the "A Look at LEGO" podcasts, and episode 7 broaches the Friends subject, which prompted me to look into this again. Some interesting feedback from fans in or near the target demographic:

letter from 14-year old
letter from 10-year old (which I have my doubts about - either we're really gifted, we got a lot of help from Mom and/or Dad, or it's just bogus)

I'm just not getting what it is about Friends that is setting people off. Paradisa had pink and people long for its return. Bellville had even more pink, BURPy parts and giant doll-esque figures, yet that doesn't seem to have raised the ire of consumers. What is it about Friends that is different? How does it prevent any young girl who is interested in Creator or even Ninjago from buying Creator or Ninjago sets? On top of that, what's wrong with a treehouse? A car? An ATV? An invention workshop? How are these things telling females they're only good for being pretty just because they have some brighter, maybe more pink-skewed colors? Granted, I don't know why you need a bucket of hairbrushes with a car, but it is a convertible. ;)

Some folks have raised an interesting point, that I think might have some validity. The Friends figure is different from the standard minifigure, but not different enough. It's the same size. The sets are roughly the same scale as standard system sets. So, people are more confused about the change.

BrickBits wrote:As other posters have pointed out, more female characters in the regular sets, please. And that includes the strong female characters in the [licensed] lines.


LEGO says research revealed to them that girls couldn't relate to the standard minifig. Based on personal experience in my household, I think that was some miscommunication. I'm repeating myself again, but my daughter loves the standard minifig. What she's not so pleased with is the ratio of boy minifigs to girl minifigs, not the style of the fig itself.

So, all that to say - there are criticisms about this line that I get and share. But I don't understand where the sense of betrayal comes from.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby crazybirdman » Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:06 pm

Draykov wrote:I'm just not getting what it is about Friends that is setting people off. Paradisa had pink and people long for its return. Bellville had even more pink, BURPy parts and giant doll-esque figures, yet that doesn't seem to have raised the ire of consumers. What is it about Friends that is different? How does it prevent any young girl who is interested in Creator or even Ninjago from buying Creator or Ninjago sets?


I can't stress that last part enough. So you like LEGO, but don't like Friends? Then don't buy Friends. You are not the target demographic. To me it seems just a silly as a man complaining about how he doesn't like the Bob the Builder Duplo. Well it's not really for grown men is it?
It's very similar to the 'prequel are bad, now all Star Wars is bad discussions
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby MisterFubar » Thu Apr 12, 2012 6:48 am

Like them or not these sets seem to be flying off the shelves of all my local retailers.

My 4 year old daughter loves the new sets. She's always liked helping me sort and put together sets, and she likes playing with a the city and Star Wars sets, and especially likes it when we set up the trains. But when left alone to free play she loves playing with her dollhouse. The friends sets took something she liked doing with me and something she loved by herself and combined them.

I see this line being around for a while and as a parent of 2 girls, I'm glad.
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Re: Friends - New female theme 2012?

Postby Draykov » Thu Apr 12, 2012 6:58 am

At first, my daughter seemed indifferent about Friends. For a while, she only had one small set (3935 Stephanie's Pet Patrol). She recently got 3931 Emma's Splash Pool and now that Stephanie actually has a friend to interact with, she seems much more interested in the theme.

I sat her down and talked to her last night. We were going through the most recent Shop@Home catalog and I grilled her about some things. When I asked her questions about the theme and what she liked about it and what she thought of the characters, she seemed to be drawn mostly to the "Friends" relationship aspect...these girls are friends and do friendly things with one another and that's the draw. I asked her if she could change anything about the theme what would that be. The only thing she could come up was to suggest that the shoes be made interchangeable so she could diversify her Friends characters/outfits.

I asked her what qualities the various characters might possess based on the sets presented in the theme. The qualities she ascribed to the various characters included creativity (the fashion design shop), concern/care for animals (the vet), skill with math (the inventor). Being pretty never even entered the conversation, even when I pressed her about the beauty shop set. She described the Sarah character as helpful.

Couple all of this with the fact that these sets, even the most potentially offensive of them, are compiled predominantly of elements widely available in traditional LEGO sets and I'm confident that no potential creativity is being stifled here. As a parent, I don't find this theme the least bit troublesome...especially when compared to some alternatives.
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