Little green Army men, which have been part of almost every American childhood since they first went into production in the 1960s, are about to get a major makeover thanks to a question from a six-year-old Arkansas girl.
In the now viral letter, first-grader Vivian Lord asks the company behind the little green Army men why they don’t make any little green Army women toys. The girl explains how she likes playing with the toys, but would like to see female versions of the soldiers some day. Now VictoryBuy Inc., the company that owns BMC Toys which makes the solders, plans to take Lord’s request and turn it into a reality.
Creating Female Soldiers
“This is a very fine line when it comes to a 1:32 scale figure,” explains Jeff Imel, president of VictoryBuy Inc.. He explained to Paretology that with such a small figure, the design will have to carefully navigate over accentuating certain features to make the toy overtly feminine. Imel says they showed a couple of the initial design sketches to female service members, and were met with some objection to the female toy line wearing longer hair than their male counterparts.
In the more recent drawings BMC Toys has posted to their website, some of the female soldiers have barely visible low bun hairstyles that peek out from under their helmets.
And don’t worry about there being any kind of “pink tax” on the toys. Imel said, “[they] will be priced similarly to other figure sets offered by BMC Toys.”
Toy Soldiers That Can Make Any Kid a Hero
While Imel is excited to see the green Army men back in the spotlight, he doesn’t think they ever actually left the public’s collective consciousness.
“Plastic army men have achieved a status of being a thing separate from what they originally represented, which is an amazing achievement for a toy,” he says. “Plastic Army Men are pop-culture perennials, so they’ll always be there, ready to help any kid be the hero of their own story at playtime.”
BMC Toys recently announced that they are now accepting pre-orders of their new line of Plastic Army Women through their Kickstarter Campaign. The toys should be available October 2020, and will include 36 figures with 12 different poses.