Skip to main content

Owen’s World: Universal and Mattel’s Claire Problem

By September 1, 2019Feature

On Saturday, August 24, 2019, Collect Jurassic shared new images of Mattel Jurassic World 2020 product from their upcoming Primal Attack campaign.  The images included boxed art for the Massive Biters Tarbosaurus.  With a redesigned packaging expression, the Tarbosaurus’s box portrays Isla Nublar’s rugged terrain with electric fencing running the span of the packaging.  Dramatic colors bring the stunning imagery to life. At the bottom, we see a demonstration of the Tarbosaurus’s biting feature, as well as, for the third year in a row, Chris Pratt’s Owen Grady.  As was the case in 2018 with the Fallen Kingdom line, Owen is joined by Velociraptor Blue.  While it is worth nothing that this is not an officially released image from Mattel, it is also worth stating that the first images of Dino Rivals packaging that leaked a year ago ended up being 100% final.  As such, there is little reason to doubt that this Primal Attack packaging will at least be very close to the finished product. 

The appearance of Owen on the product packaging is unusual.  It does not feel essential, and in a year in which (much like 2019) there were few to no human basic figures in the toy line, makes for an even more confusing addition.  Mattel has stated that 2020 will be a year that focuses on the dinosaurs in the 3.75-inch range. If so, then why not let the packaging focus only on the dinosaurs as well?  Sure, Blue is a dinosaur, and she might look OK without Owen next to her. The packaging would also be fine without Blue, though. It’s a sort of callback to 2018, when the two of them featured on the packaging together.  In 2019, Owen featured alongside Rexy and a Triceratops in the Dino Rivals lineup. 

Mattel Jurassic World toy packaging: Fallen Kingdom (2018), Dino Rivals (2019) and Primal Attack (2020)

Perhaps the biggest issue with Owen on the product packaging is the fact that, according to Jurassic World and Jurassic World 3 director and co-writer Collin Trevorrow, Owen is not the protagonist of the story.  Sure, he may have received top billing on the previous two films since he was the biggr star to feature in them, and yes, he has appeared on more of the marketing of the new films than any other character.  But it is actually Bryce Dallas Howard’s Claire Dearing who, according to Trevorrow, is the central protagonist of the new trilogy. It is her character that experiences a transformation over the course of the series.  Owen, on the other hand, aside from perhaps being a bit more cynical, is more or less the same person he was at the start of Jurassic World.  (Where their characters go in the next film remains to be seen, of course.)  Some might cite Pratt’s top billing on the films, his image on the posters and covers of the Blu-ray discs, and his prominence in the marketing as reasons for him to also appear on toy packaging.  And while these are valid points, they do not change the fact that the person in charge of these new films considers him to not be the protagonist. They also do not account for the fact that on occasion, the protagonist does not receive top billing.  In 1989, Jack Nicholson, who’s Joker was the villain in Batman, received top billing over Michael Keaton’s Batman as he was the larger star at that point.  But back then, Keaton still appeared on most of the marketing for the film, including the toy packaging.

Given this information, there is only one logical reason for Claire Dearing being maligned in the marketing of the Jurassic World films and the Mattel toy line: sexism.  

The only Claire Dearing figures released for Mattel’s main Jurassic World toyline.

In spite of Pratt being the bigger star and perhaps being seen by Universal as a more viable marketing tool, the reason Owen is on Mattel’s toy packaging and not Claire comes down to Claire being female.  The sad reality is that this is not anything new. For decades, toy companies have marketed “boy’s toys” to appeal to what they may traditionally perceive as their target demographic. For ages, Star Wars skimped heavily on female action figures.  From 1995 to 1999, before the launch of Star Wars: Episode I, hundreds of action figures had been produced.  Of them, only a handful were female. This tradition carried into even the prequel era, though that began to change in the later 2000s.  Of course, that has drastically changed with the Star Wars sequel trilogy and spinoffs.  Other lines, such as Kenner’s various Batman toy lines from the late 80s to the mid 90s, were also extremely light on female characters.  With Bandai’s early Mighty Morphin Power Rangers figures, they gave both the pink and yellow rangers the same bodies the male figures had, obviously resulting in a much more masculine physique.  The lack of female figures was of course also present with Playmates’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles line.  Sure, some of these films and TV shows may have had far fewer female characters at the forefront, but the marketing still focused on males even when major players like Catwoman, Rita Repulsa, or April O’Neil were prominent.  Undoubtedly, the same is true with Claire Dearing. Despite her being our protagonist in this new Jurassic trilogy, the tough, rugged masculine male character who swoops in to save the day on more than one occasion gets the attention on account of his biology.

A Meijer store with pegs full of Owen Grady figures.

For further evidence of Owen getting special treatment over Claire in Mattel’s toy line, you simply have to visit the toy aisle.  If you are fortunate enough to have a store that still carries human basic figures, you will see that Owen is more widely available than any other character.  In fact, since Mattel’s Jurassic World toy line began, Owen has been made available in various single basic figure packs, multipacks, and other assortments a total of eleven times.  Claire on the other hand, has only been released three. For those who have been tracking this toy line since its release, you will not be unfamiliar with the stories of Owens crowding the pegs at local retailers, while Claire figures are nearly impossible to find.  My own experience has been that I have only ever once found the basic figure Claire at retail, and that was at a JC Penney store. (The figure itself had her lips painted right below her nose, making her look as if she had a mustache. Perhaps if she really had a mustache she would be more prominently featured in the toy line.)  Like a couple of the Owen basic figures, that release was also reissued in Dino Rivals packaging for 2019. The second version of Claire was available in a Story Pack, along with a gyrosphere. It was a fantastic set that only remained at retail for a few short months following the film’s release. Oftentimes, the figure had been ripped out and stolen.  There is never an excuse to steal, but perhaps this may have been because the basic figure was so hard to find at retail, and a certain, unscrupulous bunch did not want to pay $15 for Claire.  

The placement of Owen on a pedestal over Claire goes far beyond Mattel and its toy line.  As I alluded to earlier, Owen has received top billing on both Jurassic World and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.  On one of the official posters for Jurassic World, also used for the Blu-ray release, Owen is in the jungle riding alongside his Raptor Squad.  It’s a great moment in the film, but so too was the one in which Claire boldly holds up a flare to attract the T-Rex out of her paddock.  On the official poster used for Fallen Kingdom, which was also used on the Blu-ray, both Owen and Claire are featured in the middle of a chaotic moment on Isla Nublar.  However, Claire is seen clutching to Owen like a damsel in distress. In the film, this never happens. We can also use the Trends Fallen Kingdom 2019 16-month calendar to further illustrate the celebration of the male character, which featured Owen for three different months.  When I inquired with Trends about this, their response was: “The entire calendar focuses on the dinosaurs, instead of humans.  We’re sorry you’re disappointed and will pass along your concerns to our calendar team.”  This in spite of the male character who is not the protagonist being featured on three months.    

Arguably the most iconic scene in the Jurassic World franchise.

One of the strangest things about focusing this toy line towards boys is that dinosaurs appeal to more than just one half of the human population.  Like dogs, cats, and basically all animals on the planet, they are universal. Not only do we share our planet with a variety of species on all ends of the Earth spectrum, but we also care for them equally.  We would not say that boys like animals more than girls do, or that they care more about the environment, so why would we say the same about dinosaurs? While our interests may change and evolve as we grow, most of us still care for our planet and the life it has hosted over hundreds of millions of years.  There are many of us who still love dinosaurs and Earth’s creatures the same as we did as children.  

At the end of the day, this is the year 2019.  Women are in fashion. Prioritizing men over women is out of style.  The name of the game is equality and fair representation. Plenty of companies have recognized this and have changed their tune accordingly.  And while it might be good business for Universal and Mattel to promote the brawny man over the calculated, polished woman on her own personal journey over the course of these films, it is never good business to alienate your audience and play into age-old stereotypes more befitting of the 20th century.  If Owen is going to be on Mattel’s Jurassic World toy packaging, then Claire should at the bare minimum be there with him.  While it may seem trivial to take issue with toy packaging, it is important to recognize that the issue extends much further than that, and that this is merely a symptom of a far greater problem.  And to me, that is worth mentioning.   

Join the discussion 41 Comments

  • Erik says:

    Ugh. I’m all for genuine gender equality and representation, but this article reeks of gender entitlement and not equality. Women already have equality and women-centric film and television productions are at an all-time high. While I agree Claire’s figures are difficult to find and shouldn’t be as such, I HIGHLY doubt sexism is the reason behind that. Look at all of the other female action figures of other toylines and how abundant they are on toy store shelves. You find TONS of figures of characters like Captain Marvel. Simply put, Owen is the more popular character and Chris Pratt right now is a mega star with not just the JW films but also Guardians Of The Galaxy and The Lego Movie. Mattel is milking his star power and public image, which Bryce Dallas Howard arguably doesn’t really have anywhere near. It makes sense Mattel would want to market the more popular and widely known character. This article to me seems to making a big stink over absolutely nothing. Genuine sexism against anyone of either gender should absolutely be condemned but to me, the scarcity of Claire’s figures and her not being featured on the toy packaging has zippo to do with that.

    • Victoria says:

      “Women already have equality…”

      Never heard of the gender pay gap, eh? Or the fact that compared to men, women are far more likely to experience sexual harassment and assault? Not to mention the life experiences detailing these issues you might hear by sitting down and talking to women. And what about trans women? Are you saying they have equality too? Sure, some things may be getting better for women in general, but there’s still a long way to go.

      Also, how is this an article about entitlement if I have nothing to gain by whether or not Owen or Claire are on the boxes? As I outlined in the article, I’m fine with Owen being there so long that Claire is too. It makes sense for both to be there or neither of them at all. And yes, Chris Pratt is obviously the bigger star. I acknowledged the business decision side of this in the article. That doesn’t make it right, though. Plenty of things have been done in the name of good business since the beginning of time, and oftentimes history has not looked kindly on them.

      • Erik says:

        Except for the fact the gender pay gap is a myth which has been disproven time and time again. I don’t deny women get sexually harassed and assaulted, but men are also victims of this and women can also be sexual predators and deviants, it’s not always a man on woman thing (which it universally is almost always portrayed as). Both men and women can be both victims and perpetraitors. Women have made more advancements and progress than any other group of people and especially in America. There isn’t a single right men have that women don’t at this rate. Not to mention there’s so many organizations that help women and so few by comparison that help men or both genders, and there’s businesses that hire women simply because of their gender and not because they’re actually qualified for particular positions. To me that isn’t true progress at all.

        I think claiming sexism is why Claire isn’t on the packaging or why her action figure is so scarce is both ignorant and silly. I agree Owen’s figures get recycled too much and Claire shouldn’t be so hard to find, but claiming sexism is the reason behind it is ridiculous to me. The truth of the matter is that Bryce Dallas Howard simply doesn’t have anywhere near the popularity or star power Chris Pratt does. Claire’s an important character, sure, but at the end of the day it’s Owen who’s the main hero. It reeks of entitlement to me to claim sexism is the reason Claire isn’t featured on the toy packaging or why her toys are more scarce. The Jurassic toyline is aimed primarily at young boys and it makes sense the main male hero is mainly being marketed. Claiming that Claire not being featured on the toy packaging or her toy being scarce due to sexism, by that logic Barbie is a sexist toyline against males.

        I absolutely agree Claire’s toys should be more commonplace and easy to find, and I even agree there should be more female characters in the toyline to add some variety (why not some ACU women personnel?). But claiming it’s sexism to me is just silly.

        • Victoria says:

          If you really believe the gender pay gap as a myth and has been disproven as you claim it has, then I see little point in further engaging with you because I see no way of having a fair conversation with someone who subscribes to such fallacies. Perhaps you only have men in your life, but I (and many I know personally) have firsthand experienced all the things you continue to say are abnormal because women have achieved this utopian version of equality you speak of. Yes, harassment can happen to men and women. But just because something can happen doesn’t mean it occurs equally when it does. Further, your tone from your original post onward has been lined with vitriol (such as staring your first post with “Ugh.” As such, I bid you good luck on your personal journey.

          • Erik says:

            Except it’s not a fallacy the gender pay gap is non-existant as a quick internet search leads to numerous articles that disprove it. I actually took the time to read up on it long ago. As for only having men in my life, no way; you’re talking to someone who grew up mainly with his mother and grandmother, and has been around more women than men in my life. Respect for women (and men as well) is something I learned from a young age and every time I’ve met a kind woman I’ve always treated her as if she were family.

            I didn’t mean to come off as harsh if I did (I think I did), and I hope you can forgive me and my tone. Sexism against anyone of either gender is absolutely wrong, whether it’s anti-male or anti-female. But I don’t think the low ratio of Claire’s figures or her not being featured on the packaging is the result of sexism. I think it’s actually dangerous in a way to equte it with that since it does a disservice to women (and men as well) who have been victims of sexism that’s discriminatory against them. If there were absolutely no figures at all of the female characters like Ellie, Claire, Maisie, Zia, etc. then I might agree there could’ve been some sexism there, but I’m not seeing it.

            Do I agree more female figures in the Jurassic line should be made? Sure. Like I said, give us some female ACU personnel and mercenaries, add some nice variety and representation to the line-up. Make the likes of Claire and Maisie easier to find. Heck, even give us some new versions of Claire. I’m all for that. I just think it’s dangerous to be throwing around accusations of sexism for matters such as this.

            Again, my apologies if I came off as harsh before and I hope you can forgive me. I have nothing against you and you seem like an okay and nice person. If you ever have been a victim of any sort of sexism I’m very sorry, as you don’t deserve it. Men and women are meant to peacefully co-exist in this world and make it a place worth living in.

        • Ferretsaurus says:

          Your comments are so astonishingly ignorant it simply proves an underlying problem- a blind eye in the collecting community. The company will make toys based on popularity yes but until people wise up and demand equality in not just the wage gap (which is not a myth btw) but also in character representation then we will continue to be flooded by the same issues over and over. I commend Victoria on writing this article and pointing out not just a problem with the figures but with collectors attitudes as well.

          • Erik says:

            I have a blind eye? Women already have equality and have for decades. Just look at all of the female-centric projects and organizations there are and how there’s businesses that now have it mandatory to have women simply based on their gender rather than job skills or qualifications. Not to mention the countless organizations dedicated to helping women and yet there’s so few that help men, and the countless shelters there are that aid women and don’t do anything to help males. Not to mention how every year a big hoopla is made over International Women’s Day and yet not a peep is ever made about Men’s Day. Sorry, but in 2019 women have nothing but equality not just in real-life but also with gender representation in entertainment. You have so much stuff that’s female-centric for the sake of it being as such and is nothing but pure gender-pandering. The wage gap is absolutely false if you take the time to do the research and has been disproven time and time again. To claim otherwise is entitled feminist nonsense.

            I’m done with this. It’s ridiculous how a website dedicated to toy collecting has now become a heated debate over (already existing) gender equality and (non-existant) gender pay gaps. Time to move along.

        • Ferretsaurus says:

          Must be nice living in your own bubble of willful ignorance…

          • Erik says:

            As opposed to imaginary oppression, real oppression being something women haven’t faced since the women’s suffrage movement (which was about legit equality, unlike today).

        • jurassicvania says:

          “gender pay gap is a myth”
          Definitely not a myth, I’ve worked in software development for past decade can tell you it’s a problem in several companies I have worked for. Also a problem for educators in my region, which I also have personal experience with in payroll.

    • Anonymous says:


    • Leo the Yutyrannus says:

      Hey it’s not Mattel’s fault Owen is a cooler character than Claire. Kids just would rather buy Owens to pair up with their Blues just like in the movies, but Claire isn’t a raptor trainer, or a paleontologist, or a paleobotonist. Yeah, I would like if less Owens appeared and the Claires were easier to find (as it took me something months to find the singlepack), but most kids don’t really care about her as a character. I would like an Ellie Sattler, but she’s exclusive to Target so I and others who want a Sattler can’t if they don’t have a local Target. So Ellie’s hard to find, nobody wants Claire for some reason, and I’m not sure about Maisie, but that’s why I think Mattel’s focusing on dinosaurs and Owens rather than Claires, Maisies, vehicles, and playsets.

  • DJ says:

    I couldn’t have said it better myself, Victoria.

  • Alan Grant says:

    First of all, the fact that you referred to the trex as “rexy” tells me you don’t take these films seriously. I dont care if that was ita name in the novel, it’s not it’s name in the movie, and n fact it’s not it’s name anywhere else. Why? Because it sounds stupid. So stop trying to make it a thing.

    Now Claire isn’t being seen more because in a movie with completely forgettable character, her character is lamest and most forgettable.

    • Tiger Stripe says:

      I would have to disagree. I think Claire’s character doesnt do anything to drive the story. Yes I agree she actually has a character arc compared to Owen that is evident. But the problem is she hasn’t been the strongest female featured in Jurassic. Sarah Harding and Ellie Sadler I feel are more believable and strong willed leaders in a sense to help take a stand. More or less Claire follows Owen’s leads. I think the article just over thinks this “situation”. Owen “Chris Pratt” makes money. Universal sees that. Not the smartest decision on creating so many alternates. Instead of more Claire’s we needed Franklin, Dr. Wu, Mills or a better Merc variety both male and female.

  • Gooper Blooper says:

    I can’t say how deep it all goes, but it definitely is very silly that they keep slapping Owen on the packaging when the Dino Rivals and Primal Attack lines had nothing to do with him and human figures have been phased out. Just Rexy and the triceratops on the Dino Rivals packaging would have been fine, or those two with Blue (and hey, Blue’s female!)

    The relative scarcity of female humans is definitely felt. Claire, Zia, and Maisie were all hard to find amongst an endless sea of Owens and generic mercenaries who weren’t even in the movie, and back when Legacy humans were hard to find (before they hit clearance and places like Amazon started selling them around retail price) Ellie was one of the harder ones to find. The Jurassic franchise has never really gone too deep on female human protagonists, but they’ve always been there and Claire probably deserves a bit more spotlight than she’s gotten. They did make that odd Barbie doll of her, though, so I guess that’s something? Though that’s a whole different can of worms.

  • Dave Bryant says:

    I have been collecting for over 40 years and have heard the female action figure discussion 100s of times. Sorry,it’s not sexism, it’s reality.
    We ate adults who collect children’s toys,speciffically BOY’S toys! The manufacturers have always and continue to,market to boys who are not hard core collectors. They want guy figures not girl figures. Female figures do not sell well, compared to male figures according to.their research. Doesn’t matter if what you see at the aisles reflect that or not. Their research says “x” and that’s it.
    Very sorry,but this is not sexism,it’s the toy business.

    • Genozoic says:

      That’s not reality. What’s reality is this kind of thinking denied me and countless other kids back in the 90s a Kenner Lex Murphy toy to reboot Jurassic Park’s computer systems (which actually had a toy!) and save the day. I had all the other characters and still have my Dr. Sattler figure with paint worn off from constant missions to round up the dinosaurs. In short I was an 8yo boy who appreciated character rather than gender.

      With the scarcity of finding Claire, Dr. Sattler, Maisie, and Zia action figures in stores, while there’s an abundance of the male characters even if we exclude Owen demonstrates a failed over reliance on this antiquated notion of “girl action figures don’t sell”. Contrary it indicates a demand for these characters to be well represented.

  • Anonymous says:

    Oh my god – Rexy is Rexy’s name. Most of the fandom calls her that, it’s no indication that we’re not “taking the movies seriously.”

  • Ferretsaurus says:

    I completely agree with this article, with the exception of the Power Rangers bit. They used the same bodies because of the auto-morphin’ gimmick, it was easier that way and cost effective. But other than that there’s also an underlying problem Mattel has- not enough human characters period, we’re flooded we new dinos every other week it seems yet there’s slim to nothing in the human category. They’re both sexist and speciesist at this point. Also ignore all the haters sounding off in the comments, your article was spot on and simply calling the t-rex ‘rexy’ doesn’t mean you don’t take the franchise seriously it means it holds a special place in your heart- you don’t give cute nicknames to things unless you love them.

  • d.j-b.k says:

    This is so stupid. Plain and simple. There simply is no such demand for Clair. Owen is the more beloved character and no matter how many times people try to refuse it, there are more male dinosaur-fans than female dinosaur-fans. There are franchises in the world that are more loved by girls as there are franchises that are more loved by boys. It is not a crime to put a girls face on a My little Pony packaging, even for many years in a row. Even if there never is a boy on a My little Pony product it doesn’t matter and doesn’t make My little Pony sexist.

    There are important things like the afore-mentioned pay gap that need to be worked out. It is great if more franchises, movies, series and so on with female leads get released. That’s amazing. Without any doubt. Is it sexist to take a character that is male and just copy him on a female character? Does every Superman need a Superwoman, every Batman a Batgirl, every Spiderman a Spiderwoman? Is this the originality and representation that is appropriate? Not in my opinion. And its the same with ethical groups oder colours or whatever. Everyone deserves to be presented in an original way. And not everyone has to be forced into every franchise on this world. Is a Boyband sexist? Is a girlband sexist only because it consists of 5 men or women?

    Here we are talking about toy packaging. Toys that are marketed for boys like barbie is marketed for girls. Who would write such an shitty article about Ken not being on the packaging of a Barbiedress? Can boys like barbie? Sure, why not? There’s nothing wrong with it. Is it sexist to have a target-audience for a product? No it’s not because that’s the group of people that makes up the biggest part of those interested in the product. That’s it. Female, Male, Old, Young whatever. Owen might not be the main protagonist according to Trevorrow but he ist the action-character. So he is on the packaging of action-figures. Every movement grows until it gets blown out of proportion and takes on ridiculous forms distracting from the actual and real problems. This article is exactly that. A distraction and a bad parody of all the real problems sexism causes.

    Sorry for the rant.

    • Erik says:

      Yes! Agreed. Sexism is a terrible thing (against anyone of either gender), but it has nothing to do with the low ratio of female figures in a toyline aimed primarily at boys.

    • Anonymous says:

      The majority of Jurassic toys are female.

      • Anonymous says:

        Actually, the ratio of female figures in the Jurassic Park and Jurassic World toys are like 100 female figures to every 1 male. We can thank Dr. Wu for breaking the sexist male to female figure ratio in this line. Heck from all the latest reports, it seems there may not be even 1 single male toy made in the JW toy line for 2020! Seriously though Bryce would be very cool to see included in the packaging. Apparently toy packaging is made simple with uniformed design for product recognition. They can’t just keep rolling out new packaging formats for every line.

  • Jeff says:

    “As for only having men in my life, no way; you’re talking to someone who grew up mainly with his mother and grandmother, and has been around more women than men in my life.”

    Some of my best friends are women…

    • Erik says:

      Same here. I get along very well with the women in my life. My feelings on the opinion on this article aren’t sexist or misogynist whatsoever and for anyone to think or claim otherwise is personally offensive to me.

      • Ferretsaurus says:

        Actually from everything you’ve said you’ve proven to be sexist- albeit due to ignorance so keep being personally offended it won’t change the fact what you wrote as your opinion is both those things.

  • Victor says:

    This whole scenario only happens because Chris Pratt is more popular, more people know his name and it’s thanks to Marvel, After his Star-Lord role he became a household name and has been in countless movies I’d say currently he’s in the prime of his career, it happens to every major star. Bryce Dallas Howard now I can tell you every time I say her name no one I know even knows that name I have to say Gwen Stacy from Spider-Man 3 and even then they look confused and think of Emma Stone from the Amazing Spider-Man movies. It happens all the time where the more known star gets the better attention in advertising. If Will Smith were in a movie even if he wasn’t the main protagonist his face would be everywhere advertising wise. In Godzilla King of the Monsters from this year guess what Stranger Things star’s face showed up in the Trailers and Tv Spots Millie Bobby Brown, and her character was hardly that important, so bottom line popularity takes all when it comes down to it. Also the batman thing, it’s a little different when it comes down to Superheroes. Most people don’t go to a superhero movie because of an actor, they go because their favorite hero is about to be on the big screen, so automatically whoever is the hero the movie’s based off of is the instant target for advertising, it’s not like Michael Keaton’s face get’s to just poke out he’s in the batsuit for a majority of the advertising work. Now I still agree with the whole Owen being featured on the packaging being very ridiculous at this point especially considering he’s not needed, I’d even take just the packaging with no extra stuff added on to it besides the art itself like the fence in the background is all we need or Fallen Kingdom’s exploding volcano, we don’t need these extra heads of a person or a dinosaur on the packaging let the actual art speak for itself.

  • Dr Jurassic says:

    So many people claiming here that its not sexism because “the toyline is aimed at boys” or “because Owen is a better character” or because “Chris Pratt has more star power”….

    All these things, yes. But all of this IS sexism. Men write shitty roles for women, which means the male characters do all the good stuff, which means the male actors get more credibility, which means they get paid more, but also means executives think people prefer males in these roles and on and on it goes.

    I work in children’s television. Specifically I am show creator, director and sometime producer of animated series. I work with some of the big American studios. Which work closely with toy companies, which I’ve also had close contact with. The level of casual misogyny and sexism amongst executives and high level creatives is astounding. As a white, heterosexual male I’m often exposed to the blatant unfiltered side of it, but it’s the actually the completely unintentional, preprogrammed and subtle sexism that actually does the most damage. The little choices, like not putting the female character on the packaging.

    I have a baby daughter and whilst obviously I hope that she’ll be into dinosaurs, ultimately when she’s old enough I like to think she’ll make the choices about what she wants to be into for herself. But it’s not going to be easy. Not when everything in the toy store tells her who its for.

    PS – Owen sucks. He’s a tough guy army man with a gun who trains raptors but thinks training dinosaurs is bad. He’s an idiot. I like my JP heroes to be scientists.

    • Ferretsaurus says:

      I cannot love your comment more. The belief that there needs to be ‘boys toys’ and ‘girls toys’ is outdated and sadly due to consumerism won’t go away without a HUGE pushback. Let children play with what they want, use their imagination- after all, at the end of the day they are a toy company and as much as they need to listen to fans it’s kids who are the target audience. This article, as well as all the comments both good and bad, point out how powerful and dangerous a toy company’s power can be.

  • new age scam artist says:

    At least y’all got two Claire action figures. I’m still waiting for a Gennaro action figure. If anyone is being oppressed it’s the naturally balding men of Jurassic. Such oppression! And also, I’ll take a Lex action figure too. Bye.

  • jurassicvania says:

    I see a lot of commentators roughly saying “Owen gets it because he’s the bigger star” or “because boys buy more toys” as if that is an excuse. Reasons yeah, but not an excuse.

    Claire really needs to be put center stage and Owen moved to the background. Probably, Claire needs to be doing the cool stuff and having the cool lines to be the bigger star, unfortunately the movies so far have given almost everything to Owen.

    • new age scam artist says:

      Economics. Chris Pratt >>>>>>> Bryce Dallas Howard from a box office draw standpoint. Pratt is a movie star. Period.

      • DeltaEcho says:

        “Economics. Chris Pratt >>>>>>> Bryce Dallas Howard from a box office draw standpoint. Pratt is a movie star. Period.”

        Making a statement and putting “period” at the end does not make it fact. Show me a film where Chris Pratt has been tasked with carrying the majority of the promotion of said film BY HIMSELF as the lead character, with NO ESTABLISHED BRAND / INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY behind it, and the movie in question has made bank. I’ll wait. Dude voiced the main character in The LEGO Movie (a Juggernaut of a brand and IP), where the industry buzz was around the plot twist more so than his performance; played second fiddle to Jennifer Lawrence in Passengers (both in promotion and in the budget line); was part of an ensemble in Guardians, which made bank because of the prior establishment of the MCU being a brand of quality comic book flicks; and — given the site I’m on — I shouldn’t even need to tell you how much you’d be straight up FOOLING yourself to think Jurassic World made stupid amounts of money and broke box office records for the series because people went to see Chris Pratt in the first Jurassic movie to be put out in theaters in 14 years. Yeaahh–no.

        Chris Pratt is capable of being a leading man, that does not mean he is a “movie star” in the sense of absurd drawing power, and this is actually a problem within the industry itself — the two are not synonymous. There is no untainted data or proof we have that he is a “box office draw” that much greater than Bryce Dallas Howard; data for both actors in this area is inconclusive. The only way to get a true understanding of someone’s raw “draw power”, is to do what I said: you basically slap a picture of just the person in question on the movie poster, with some vague title and promotion, and see what the numbers end up being… and then you have to do that a few more times to prove that the first wasn’t a fluke flop or success. Yes, that requires producers being willing to do that in the first place, but it also tells you something when the people with stupid amounts of money haven’t found the faith to do this when they’ve done so for others (Jennifer Lawrence being the easiest recent example via “Red Sparrow” and “Mother”; hell, they even took that shot with Bradley Cooper in “Burnt”). This has yet to be even attempted with Pratt (which, if he was as white hot of a commodity as so many people here claim, would’ve been), so any speak of his draw power is purely assumption and conjecture.

  • John says:

    Oh, I agree wit this article a thousand percent. I like both Claire and Owen a lot — but it’s clear that the narrative of both films is about Claire changing and developing as a character, while Owen does not. He is the same person in both films — which is fine, I think it’s more entertaining and interesting to put the focus on her. But the merchandising and promotion for the new films don’t reflect this, even beyond toys — and I think it weakens the films, because while Pratt is an excellent actor and Owen is involved in the big action sequences, he’s not the heart of the story, and his lack of development makes the stories appear weaker when he is assumed as the protagonist.

    But enough about that — you’re absolutely right that sexism is affecting the toy releases. Owen being on the packaging year after year is crazy. Owen receiving eleven releases is crazy… and when you look at Legacy, Grant, Muldoon and Malcolm were allreleased more than Sattler to boot! It’s not isolated to the ‘new movies’, as I’ve had many people sometimes use to justify it.

    The reality is sexism in the toy industry is heavily enforced, not only on an executive level but by parents and relatives buying toys for their kids. There is so much fear about accidentally buying a child a toy that isn’t gender-specific. Even many parents who would claim to be progressive on gender roles may bristle at buying their child an action figure that doesn’t match their prescribed interests. In some other cases, girl-focused lines were created for boy brands because parents would express dissatisfaction with the traditional boy brand toys for their kids — so Star Wars made a serious effort with ‘Forces of Destiny’ dolls, but perhaps more significantly, LEGO created a ‘Friends’ line for girls. What could be more unisex than a LEGO brick? Parents saw it as a boys’ toy that needed to be more coded to girls. When I worked in a toy store, we had a lot of grandparents and relatives looking to buy toys who often used the child’s age and gender as all they had to work with, and this is exactly where assumptions start and are relied on. I am NOT trying to place blame on parents for sexism, not at all, but it’s so institutional that it creates a feedback loop that justifies both sides’ sexism.

  • Josiah says:

    I love ?these toys so much that I want to collect them all but I only have a small variety of them like siats,carnotorus,t-rex,ankylosaurus, and other popular dinosaur Mattel toys in stores

  • Josiah says:

    I do t have all the Mattel toys but the weird thing is is that I started collecting in 2018! So I should have most of them but I only have the popular ones that are in store now.

  • matt says:

    Good article. In regards to action figures. Unfortunately female characters are always “peg warmers”. Just look at the Hasbro Star Wars line. The majority of figs still remaining are female characters. Its just the way it is. The good side of making so few Claire figs that she is in demand and people will pay big $$$ to acquire her awesome action fig. I will anyway.

  • Anonymous says:

    You know the writer is full 0f crap when they state opinions with no proof as their basis for the article. We KNOW its because shes a woman. there cant possibly be any other reason.

  • chad says:

    You know the writer is full of crap when they state opinions with no proof as their basis for the article. We KNOW its because shes a woman. there cant possibly be any other reason.

  • chad says:

    You know the writer is sorry when they state opinions with no proof as their basis for the article. We KNOW its because shes a woman. there cant possibly be any other reason. so narrow minded