Do American Girl dolls of Color Sell Poorly?

27 Oct

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With 2015 around the corner, every American Girl fan is anticipating the next American Girl Girl of the Year, the new annual modern doll that has come out since the beginning of the 21st Century. She usually comes with her own collection and set of books. What makes these dolls different from the historical dolls are that they reflect modern girls. The modern stories tend to lack the depth and length that the historical stories have.

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Last year, American Girl disappointed many fans with Isabelle, an inspiring dancer. She was very uninteresting to most folks. 1) Girl of the year 2005 was a dancer. 2) Isabelle was another boring blonde in pink. It’s not that American Girl is crawling with blondes. It was just too predictable. Fans were hoping for something a little more original. To add, her features weren’t very unique. She didn’t have short hair or a ponytail or pigtails. She was marketed in an unoriginal way. Everything about her reminded everyone of another doll released in American Girl. I’ve heard comparisons to Kailey, Julie, Lanie…Which can’t be helped. Sometimes, American Girl has to repeat itself. But did she have to wear pink and dance? No.

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This year, many people are pushing for variety in the Girl of the Year line. I hear a lot of people asking for an African American. Out of all of the dolls that have been released in the last 10 years, not one has been of African American descent. People are hoping that 2015 will be the year. Yet, there are many others who doubt it, including myself.

The question is: Why hasn’t Mattel created an African American doll? To put it honestly, black dolls don’t sell well in the American Girl historical/Beforever collection. Many argue that this just doesn’t apply to African American dolls, but Asian and Hispanic/Latino dolls in the Beforever line as well. Since the historical/Beforever collection is the “heart” of the brand, it is the main factor when American Girl Company is deciding what will sell or not.

This does not apply to the My American Girl line, where the black girls sell pretty well. More on this later…

The Beforever line seems to have the hardest time.

There could be two reasons for this:

1) American Girl does not appeal to African American children or households.

2) American Girl is too expensive, and minority families are less willing to pay the price for dolls.

As an African American myself, I have to say that, growing up, both really struck my household as true. I was introduced to American Girl at a young age in the 1990’s. Back then, the prices were lower, but we still didn’t want to invest in these dolls. I got two dolls, and that was it. When I got older, I extended my collection. Most people I talk to that are of my same ethnicity say the same thing: “I am not spending that kind of money for a doll. She will be fine with a Disney doll”.

Price is one thing, but the appeal of American Girl is not catching on to the African American community, either.

The reasons vary. They are not all related, either.

One reason is that the few American Girls that are black and a part of American Girl have provided stereotypical versions of African Americans for years. While Addy, the 1864 slave girl, exposes young black girls to a real part of African American history, some African Americans took offense during the time when she was the only African American represented (back in the 1990’s when she was the only black doll). Many African Americans wanted to be known for more than being uneducated slaves. They felt it was a hurtful and poor reminder of the oppression and segregation experienced by black people. Like, why does the black girl have to be the slave? They were ashamed of this. Other races are afraid to invest in Addy, as her stories deal with racial issues so heavily. So, Addy was controversial. Since African Americans didn’t take off with Addy, many didn’t follow the brand through. Many are just hearing about the new doll, Cecile, the wealthy girl of color, because they only remember the brand when it had Addy, the slave girl.

I will say this is the same with Kaya. I get so many Native American people telling me they hate Kaya because she falls into stereotypes, though she represents a real part of their history and ACTUAL culture! It was the same with Ivy.

Addy (left, 1864)and Cecile (right, 1853)

Addy (left, 1864)and Cecile (right, 1853)

The truth is, as proud as people are of their personal heritage, many people want to be defined and labeled by something other than their ethnicity. They are struggling to find an American identity in this modern world, where race is no longer something that can define a person’s successes or failures as much as it used to. While people would be offended if their races weren’t represented, people would equally be angry if that doll was stereotypical in nature! And then people would be contradictory and end up offended if the doll wasn’t realistic or true to the culture at all! Even with Cecile, there were still black people who thought Cecile was glossing over the struggles of black people! Addy was too harsh, and Cecile wasn’t harsh enough!

Read More about that here: American Girl Black History Month

With so many divisions, this divides the money as well. Thus, the sale of the doll depends on how well she is executed. Most companies don’t want to take this risk. Thus, they risk less by omitting an ethnicity altogether.

The main reason why divisions occur inside an ethnicity could be because there are not ENOUGH ethnic dolls to represent a diverse group of people. Even black people are multi-faceted. There are millions of white dolls to represent the diverse viewpoints and personalities of various Caucasian people. With only one or two black dolls, black people are forced to connect with that doll based on skin or culture, even if the doll is marketed in a way that doesn’t connect necessarily with every black girl’s personality or interests. If there were more black dolls, sales of minority dolls would increase, as people would begin to recognize the company as being diverse in their collection of black personalities. This is very evident when we see the success of the Bratz dolls. The Latin/Hispanic/Jewish dolls sell far more than the blonde and white dolls. There are many diverse Latin/Hispanic characters to choose from, thus the sales of the Hispanic dolls have increased, and they continue to make more. Even Clawdeen and her whole ware-wolf family from Monster High, relatively dark-skinned dolls, are some of the best sold in the line next to the brunette Draculaura. Why hasn’t this success translated to American Girl?

American Girl struggles to connect with the diversity within one ethnicity. For instance, Addy is smart and family-oriented. A black girl who doesn’t like school or isn’t as family-tied would not connect with her. I connect with Addy because her skin is like mine, but as a writer, I can’t help but be drawn to Kit more. Black girls are not marketed in a way that reveals more than the color of their skin. Diversity brings more diverse customers. This goes for all the other ethnic dolls. In order to find a middle ground, market researchers would have to dig deep and find out just what appeals to most ethnic children. However, many researchers would rather take the easy route, especially because many people just end up buying a My American Girl doll anyway, where children can make her into anything they want.

A second reason could be the way these ethnic minorities are marketed. The modern dolls sell more than the historical dolls as it is, but even within the historical line, the 20th Century girls sell better than the 18th and 19th Century girls. Even some of the Caucasian dolls sold within the 18th and 19th Centuries have been discontinued (Felicity, Kirsten, Marie-Grace, Elizabeth). In fact, all but one Caucasian doll still exists out of the two centuries (Caroline)! But Most of the ethnic minorities have dolls that represent the unpopular centuries (Kaya, Josefina, Addy). Though dolls from the 20th Century have been discontinued, one has been brought back, and no one would be shocked if the other ones came back. Therefore, it would be more advantageous for dolls of color to represent eras that existed in the 20th Century. This is why there was a push for a Civil Rights Era doll of color. Sure, you can argue that Ivy was from the 20th Century, and no, she wasn’t successful. But then again, she was just a “side-kick” doll without a collection all her own or a full book series.

Another advantage would be to give their next wealthy girl of color or their Asian doll a complete collection all to herself. They had the opportunity to make so many glamorous accessories and playsets for their last wealthy girl of color. Did they take advantage of it? No. They had the opportunity to make their 1970’s girl Asian. Did they? No.

In the modern Girl of the Year collection, there hasn’t been an African American doll yet to determine whether she would sell well. But the ethnic dolls that have existed have been Marisol, Jess, Sonali, and Kanani. Jess and Sonali did not sell well. Marisol and Kanani did. Well, Kanani sold better than Isabelle, that is. Jess was not marketed in girlish, glittery colors like Marisol and Kanani, neither was Jess’s story appealing to little girls, though it was my favorite. It was also not a huge collection. But for once, Jess was recognized as the daughter of archaeologists, not the Japanese girl (though she is bi-racial)! And yet, people were still disappointed she didn’t have any items representing her heritage…

Sonali was a best friend doll. She represented a girl who was originally a snob and became a friend. Of course she wouldn’t be appealing! She had no story collection and was not the main character of the movie. She was also a side-kick doll, like Ivy. She only came with one outfit.

So, those two dolls didn’t sell well. But the other two dolls did…

Marisol was a dancer, which is appealing to little girls, especially ballet. That’s why American Girl thought they could do it again. Kanani was just stylish overall. She also had a summertime collection that could bust out the lively colors and outdoor accessories and playsets.

Four dolls, four different results, and different marketing approaches. But one thing is certain: We can’t determine the outcome of the sale of a doll that hasn’t been tried yet. We can only deduce how the company will handle it based on the execution of their other dolls. So far, the chances of success are there if the company tries hard enough. It’s difficult, but not impossible. They have had at least two dolls of color fair well in GOTY.

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There are other examples of American Girl’s success with dolls of color. If we go on American Girl.com, mozy on over to the “Shop” section, click the “My American Girl” link, “search the dolls by item” number, which is the same as pressing the “Start the Fun” button, you will see a list of dolls. At the top, you can sort that list in any way you want, but one selection is by popularity. The top three most popular dolls include a dark-skinned doll! In fact, the first page has two dark-skinned dolls and one medium-skinned doll listed! These three dolls are very popular, so American Girl is selling some darker dolls very well. They are modern. If they do what they did for these dolls, perhaps they could sell more.

If they gave the ethnic minority girls more appealing collections, lovable personalities, a movie wouldn’t hurt, and friendlier stories, girls would cave and buy them, just like they did with Marisol and Kanani.

On the same token, if the people themselves accept the doll, and she represents both the historical aspect and a modern aspect, perhaps both sides of an ethnic division could easily support the doll.

Thus, I still think American Girl should at least try it’s hand at an African American girl. If it doesn’t work, at least they will have the satisfaction of knowing they tried. Really, it doesn’t seem to improve much from having a blonde character. American Girl’s market share spiraled down 10% this year. Isabelle is the least sold GOTY, and she is blonde and pink! People are looking for change, and I think now is the time to give it.

My overall conclusion: The black dolls in the My American Girl line sell better than the black dolls in the Beforever line.Therefore, the likelihood that a modern black girl could sell well is higher than if she’s in the Beforever line. And the only reason the Beforever dolls sell poorly is because of representation, execution, and poor marketing.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think? What are your predictions for Girl of the Year 2015?

Read my other article: Do blonde dolls sell better?

The Bechdel Test Amendment: The Bly Test

24 Oct

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I recently just heard about the Bechdel test. As an active feminist, I am surprised I’m the last to know about this examination. I heard about this test when I was in a debate about whether Frozen was a feminist movie or not. I was told, “At least the movie passed the Bechdel test”.

The Bechdel Test was a short, three-step test designed in the 1980’s by cartoonist and feminist Alison Bechdel. She had a character in her comic strip, Dykes to Watch Out For, that presented the idea. The character said she would not go to the movies if the movies were missing certain standards. These were the following requirements:

1) It has to have at least two women in it who…

2) Talk to Each Other About…

3) Something Besides a Man

Later someone added a fourth requirement:

4) The women must be named characters

I know, the requirements are amusing, but very well-thought out. It’s a good start, considering the ideas were formed over 20 years ago. This three-step standard seems to have become the deciding factor over whether a work of fiction is female-suitable, and thus whether the fiction makes it “feminist”-friendly.

Again, while I think the standard is a good start, I think the test is too simple and is flawed. Critics have pointed out the flaws. While I think it was an amusing strip, and good for a short read, I don’t think it’s thorough enough for people to go off of full-throttle. Here are a list of flaws:

1) While it mentions that a movie should have at least two main characters, it doesn’t specify whether those two females should be important to the story or influential (which the Mako Mori test covers, more on this later).

2) It doesn’t cover content. While there may be females in a movie, the content could be very sexist or very stereotypical in nature.

3) The idea of whether a man is included in a story conflicts with true feminism. Feminism is the idea that the genders are equal. The exclusion of male roles would not be fair or equal. It would also not make a woman’s movie equal that of a man’s because every “male-oriented” movie includes a woman in it. The extent to how much a man should be mentioned isn’t specified. Does this mean that a woman can’t even mention one man at all with another female? Does this mean that she can talk about a man, but not exclusively? Does this mean the content should exclude a relationship between a man and woman? Could a woman have a romantic interest that’s male, but still not talk to another woman about that love interest? There are too many blurred lines here…

So, if we only let the Bechdel test alone decide feminist content, we would be glossing over greater fictional issues.

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The second test that comes after the Bechdel Test is the Mako Mori Test. The standards for this test is as follows:

1) At least one female character…

2) Who gets her own narrative arc…

3) That is not about supporting a man’s story

I think Law and Order: SVU passes both tests…

This broadens the requirements a bit more, but still fails to cover content or gender equality. We are in the depths of the 21st Century. It’s time to bump up the requirements.

It seems extra strenuous to tack on more requirements. Even meeting these requirements is challenging. One of the reasons it’s so challenging is because there are not enough women influencing entertainment beyond being an entertainer. Though women have influenced literature, there are hardly any women producing music, music videos, or movies. One in six directors, writers, and producers are actually women. I’ll bet the greatest number of females are singing, dancing, or modeling…Being an image for the camera rather than behind it…

Another reason this is all so challenging is because it’s easier for male-oriented movies to appeal to both genders, but it’s harder for female-oriented movies to do so. Many times, female-oriented movies have to cave some of these requirements in order to get box office hits. Let’s face it: Men will not support a woman if she’s not attractive. Men make up viewer numbers, and if they don’t watch it, it will have a harder time being bigger than a male-oriented movie that gets viewership from both males and females.

The third issue is whether the standards match reality. The reality is that some women themselves are only interested in movies that deal with men and/or traditional feminine interests. Look at the success of the Twilight series. Look who wrote the series: A woman. In order to meet these standards, there needs to be a complete re-working in the mentality of the next generation.

To add, there are women who audition for stereotypical roles in movies, write about stereotypical lifestyles, and present stereotypical images in music videos all the time. If they support it, the issue will persist. As long as up-coming actresses settle for any female role, even if that role is stereotypical in nature, directors will continue to represent women the way they want to. The real question is: How does the modern female see herself, and will these views conflict with another female’s idea of “equal”?

Read my article: Feminism Today: Is it Real or Overrated?

The fourth issue is the true goal of all women. Is the Bechdel Test designed to promote a feminist agenda or some other form of female empowerment? We have to remember that female chauvinism and misandry still exist…Do women really want a movie that is equal to a man’s? Or do they want a movie that exclusively represents women and her glory? Women are not all united in what they want, so pleasing women on a universal level is difficult.

What is the difference between feminism, chauvinism, and misandry? Click me and Find out

The Bechdel Test hasn’t done enough to put men and women on the same level. This depends on if this is really what women want…

Because of these issues, there needs to be stronger, firmer lines and boundaries. I decided to write an amendment to the Bechdel Test. I decided to create my own modern, 21st Century test called the “Bly Test”. These requirements are for the ULTIMATE feminist movie. If you readers agree with my test, then you can set it as your standard. If you don’t, feel free to comment on my draft. I will always consider possible flaws in this draft, but I at least want to begin somewhere new.

Why the name “Bly”? I am inspired from Nellie Bly, a daring female reporter who invented Investigative Reporting. She went undercover as a mentally insane person and wrote about her experiences in an asylum. She also traveled around the world in 72 days! That female dared to do what no female before or after her would do and she broke ground in the reporting industry. This new test I’m thinking of is made to break new ground in fiction. If Nellie Bly can dare to be a different sort of writer, why can’t women dare to be something different in writing? Nellie Bly wrote about exciting stories with herself as the main character! And her stories would probably pass both the Bechdel Test AND the Mako Mori Test, if ever someone gets around to writing her story or creating her live-action movie. I’m really surprised there are no movies on this woman…

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That aside, I have my own standards. So, here I go.

1) The fiction has to have a female lead character…

2) With her own Story Arc…

3) That should not be supporting a Man…

Very similar to the Mako Mori Test. Sure, there are plenty of female lead characters in movies today. So, keep it rolling. We need more women playing the lead and not the lead love interest…I will keep it moving…

4) There should at least be one or more female supporting characters…

Yes, this bothers me. There are a lot of lead female characters, but I notice that all the other supporting characters tend to be male, especially in animated movies. For instance, in Mulan, Mulan was a strong female heroine, but she was the only one. All of the other supporting characters were male. Princess and the Frog had one female supporting character that provided comic relief, but the rest were male (Yes, I’m including the alligator and firefly). In male movies, most of their supporting characters are male, with one female love interest. Sadly, women only choose males for most of their support, too. It’s okay to have a love interest, but one work of fiction should still include more female characters as support. Even Hunger Games had more male supporting roles than female. Divergent took a risk and ended up having more female supporting characters, but the lead support was a male love interest…Not that this makes the movie different from a male-directed movie.

5) Main Character and/or Supporting Characters Must Provide Comic Relief and Personality…

Many females do not get respect for being funny. More male comedians get respect than females. I was very pleased when Turk from Tarzan and Dori from Finding Nemo provided comedy. Both female supporting characters did not turn out to be love interests. I was very grateful. Even Thor had one female comic character. I wish that more movies made women entertaining, and not dry and serious all the time.

And main female characters are usually even more boring, moral, and serious. Women seem irritated and defensive about everything. I don’t think that’s how they should be represented. Even Katniss Everdeen, Tris, and Hermoine seemed overtly serious and focused.

I find because women lack “personality”, they lack entertainment value. They are so serious, so focused, determined, defensive, and ambitious, they are too serious. We need some recklessness, some drama to the character, some humor from her.

6) All Female characters Must Be Named.

As was added to the Bechdel Test, it will also be added to the Bly Test.

7) The Female Must Have a Goal, Dreams, or Aspirations…

I shouldn’t even have to mention this, but I will. Just in case.

8) And the Female’s MAIN GOALS In life Must Not Lean Toward Fashion, Romance, Social Status, Singing, or Dancing.

We are missing a strong group of females in the sci-fi or technology genre. Most lead females, especially in fiction geared to children, focus on fashion, social status (like Material Girls or Mean Girls), romance, and music, like dancing and/or singing. The problem are these goals focus a heavy lot on appearances and the body. We need more characters that aspire to be rulers, adventurers, or even women who discover something or invent something. I would love a female to lead a story like Atlantis the Lost Empire. I’m not saying there should be no fashion, social status, singing, romance, or dancing AT ALL. BUT I feel women need to move away from these hobbies and goals just a tad bit more. It would do some good to have variety. Women should show the world that they have various interests and that they are capable of intelligence.

9) Female Lead Must Not Focus on Her Looks, Not even to Impress Love Interest, to Satisfy Herself, or to Impress Viewers/Readers.

Women in fiction focus entirely too much on fashion and pretty looks. Even Frozen’s Elsa decided to dazzle the crowd with a glittery dress when she could’ve expressed her freedom with the clothes she had on. I have more to say on this on another article. A female must use her actions to impress the audience/reader, as well as any love interests or admirers. Is this so hard to ask? If women themselves focus so much on their own looks, how can anyone ever think women are anything more than pretty faces?

Surprisingly, Alice in Wonderland accomplishes this.

10) The Female Must Save the Day Without the Assistance of a Male.

The female must take down the final villain all on her own, with no assistance from a male. Mulan accomplished this.

11) There Must Be A Strong Female Villain and/or Rival, who isn’t evil because of her appearance or a broken heart…

12) And She should have Female Minions

I’m so tired of these weak female villains who turn out to be victims. We need some seriously ferocious female villains. That’s what I appreciated about Divergent. Why must a woman only be evil or have ambition when a man is her motivation for wanting revenge or anything else in life? And I know a villain isn’t flattering, but sometimes a movie is as good as it’s villain. Look at the Joker from The Dark Knight? Even a good female anti-hero would suffice, one like Jack Sparrow. Women are too, well, stuck-in-the-mud with righteous views. Why can’t women be good super villains or confusing ani-heroines? Why should female heroes only have villains that are easy to take down? That was what was disappointing about Frozen. Aren’t women strong enough to be challenged in a a great way? Villains test the strength of main characters. Without a good antagonist, how can we admire the hero? And what better way to challenge a female heroine than with another strong female antagonist?

There is also a sad lack of female minions. The male minions even take center-stage over female minions.

Basically, if a movie meets these requirements, some of our feminist problems will be solved. There would leave no room for women to complain. We covered adventure and action because without fashion, performing arts, and romance, what is there left in genres? Sci-fi, action, adventure, or family drama is left! We covered women being a main character for once. We covered women having a shot at supporting other females, and we even covered villain equality. We covered content and goals. Everything else should be up to the creativity of the writer. If we put too many rules on this, it would actually be limiting.

So let me know what you think about my amendment! You think it would work? What other additions do you think I should add to the Bly Test? Leave a comment and let me know.

SM Entertainment Gets Hit Hard: Luhan Leaves EXO and Jessica was FORCED OUT of Girls’ Generation!

14 Oct

I step away from K-pop for a moment and THIS is what I hear?

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This year has been the year of news-media slumps for SM. From the dating scandals, lawsuits, controversial music videos and debuts, as well as group mutiny, SM hasn’t had the best of luck with it’s artists this year.

To strike the lowest blow, all of these problems have brought SM’s stock market profits down 15%, down to an all time low! They are now under YG Entertainment as the most successful K-pop production label. The name alone used to be worth something. The name of SM has now been smeared over the past couple of months…Though they still are pretty profitable. But YG’s market value is higher, and this gives YG the lead in the consumer world.

The latest slams have been towards two of SM’s most successful groups: The young boy band, EXO, and the fully established female group, Girls’ Generation!

I have this strange feeling that this production company is being sabotaged by some underlying force. How can all of these scandals come out so rapidly, in one whole year? I guess that’s what happens when you reach the top. Stories are juicier coming from a major company. And those companies are easier to shatter. Well now that YG is at the top, I bet they will be next…

YG has something that makes them superior to SM’s label. YG is truthful. They don’t try to purify their artists. They give their artists more freedom than any other label in Korea. SM makes their artists into “Gods” and “Goddesses”, something that is hard to live up to. Because SM profits off of this manufactured perfection, they end up controlling their artists’ actions so they won’t look bad and so their label won’t be smeared. It ends up doing the opposite to them as a company.

I’m not one to take sides unless I know the full story, but because of SM’s tactics, the average person sees SM as foggy. It’s hard to know whether we should sympathize with the company or the artists. Sure, we can’t blame the company for every artist that jumps ship, but we should hold them responsible for something. Well, I’m here to give you my opinion on the two recent MAJOR scandals that can influence the future of SM’s success. I’m here to talk about the departure of members from MAJOR K-pop groups.

EXO: Luhan has filed a Lawsuit

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EXO was a 12-member group consisting of a Korean group and a Chinese Mandarin group: EXO-K and EXO-M.

Earlier in the spring, EXO-M’s Kris filed a lawsuit out of nowhere just before he was about to go on tour. All 12 members were diligently preparing for the tour. Suddenly, and without warning, Kris jumped ship. Many people thought he was fed up with SM, as SM has lost artists to lawsuits before (Super Junior and JYJ), but Kris went about it in a way…that seemed poorly executed.

Here we are, 4 months later, and another Chinese member flows the coop: Luhan, with the same tactics Kris executed.

All eyes are peering closely at SM. Many people believe there is someone in the Chinese music industry offering deals to the members. If this were true, what is more tempting to these members than working for SM? Whatever offers are being made available for these artists, it seems enough for the artists to drop their loyalties.

Well, I think it should be a little obvious. A good number of SM’s artists are not from Korea. This is also the difference between SM and YG. Kris and Luhan may feel more comfortable in a country that speaks their language and understands their culture. Further, they could be closer to family members…

Or is there more to the story? Kris was from Canada. Moving to China wouldn’t make him close to his folks. But it certainly doesn’t seem to stop his career. Perhaps China has better music label contracts in it’s country. In Korea, his career may be over. But in China, it is just beginning.

EXO is a fairly new group, and it’s unusual for two members to leave within two years of their debut, and at the height of their success for that matter. Did they just discover there were other things they wanted to do? But what would be the need to sue a company? The company locks them into binding contracts, but so does every label. Is SM treating the members of EXO unfairly? Why would they have the need to hit so hard? I mean, it’s very easy to treat members unfairly when you have so many members to tend to.

The real mystery comes up when considering how the two members went about it. They didn’t tell SM, they didn’t tell their fellow members. They just went about their task in a sneaky way, as if they trusted no one. Could it also mean that their relationship with remaining members were not that tight either?

 Information about Kris’s lawsuit-Click Me

Variety shows are bs. K-pop artists have to act close on these shows in order to sell their products. But even brothers fight. This doesn’t mean there was no trouble in paradise. What’s really going on is a mystery.

I want to blame the management at SM. I want to attack the way they’ve treated their artists. They don’t have a good reputation. Perhaps they treat their international artists poorly. Perhaps their international artists are not used to Korea’s standards. Coming from a different country, there was still a lot for these young men to learn about the culture. But perhaps they were just too young when they were trained. I think SM trains it’s artists too young. Many of these kids barely know what’s good for them. Teens see the world through rose-colored glasses until they are out to fend for themselves. Life changes when people become adults. Many times, teens grow up wanting to do other things. They eventually find themselves doing things they never wanted to do before. I wanted to be a journalist as a teen. I ended up being an educator…Though I still write on the side. You just never know where life will lead you. This just doesn’t apply to careers, but relationships, too. Trust me.

I want to charge like a bull at this company, but why did these men have to jeopardize the other members’ careers? Couldn’t they have at least prepared the other members? Couldn’t they have at least first talked to SM about it to see what they could do? The way they went about it makes it hard for others to side with them.

But we don’t know the whole circumstance or why these men had to be so secretive about it. What we do know is now EXO is down to 10 members.

Luhan had more of a clear reason than EXO’s Kris. He cited an invalid contract. Still, SM says he claimed he had “health issues”, which seems to be the common excuse for SM artists. SM always claims they were “talking” to these members about it, but we don’t know if that’s true. What I do agree with SM on is that the EXO members didn’t have to file a lawsuit to get their supposed problems solved…It seemed a little too…blown up.

SM’s claims are interesting regarding Luhan.

“[Luhan] had expressed that he wanted to focus on individual activities in China rather than moving as a group with EXO due to health issues, and we were in the middle of discussing his future activities, so this sudden lawsuit is puzzling,” SM Entertainment’s statement read in part. “However, seeing that, just as in the case with Kris, Luhan filed for a lawsuit with the same law firm in the same way without reason makes us think that after gaining popularity with the group, he is now prioritizing his own personal benefit with disregard for those affected by the termination of his contract. Moreover, it seems that there is a behind-the-scenes influence.”

Perhaps he does see how he can strike it solo now that he’s a major star. Maybe he did take advantage of the lawsuit fiasco. Maybe there is someone sabotaging the label and offering the artists better opportunities. I mean, what label doesn’t want EXO on their hands?

It’s interesting to quote the bit: “with disregard for those affected by the termination of his contract”. This sounds like SM is putting some negative salt out there. But it may be true; we don’t know. He obviously didn’t care how this would affect his group or his fans. He was just fed up, and he knew his fans would worship, ahem, I mean, support him, no matter what.

But SM really needs to get their crap together or they will lose everything.

More on Luhan’s lawsuit-Click Me

Then there’s the EXO fandom. I hate to come down hard on them, but some of them are abusive when it comes to EXO, and many of them don’t respect EXO. They tend to embarrass the group and other fans. Maybe these boys want out of such abusive fan-idol relationships. Maybe they want to date, live their life, and be young. I always say a company is as crazy as it’s fans. I mean, the fans are the money, and that’s what the company wants. If the fans are crazy, the company will be, too.

EXO tickets sales plummet due to member dating

EXO fans blow up crazy after other female idols “like” a picture on instagram

EXO fans jump with anger because a member looks like he’s hugging a girl

Girls’ Generation: Jessica has been BOOTED out! Say What?

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Is this even legal?

Girls’ Generation (SNSD) was a 9-member group that laid serious K-pop ground since 2007! They were SM’s first major all-female group. Their success has traveled far and wide, bringing K-pop to other parts of the world.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, Jessica is ousted from the group! Here’s the lowdown.

Jessica wanted to start her own fashion business and just opened her first store in Hong Kong. She claims she asked SM and her fellow members about it a long time ago, and they gave her the go-ahead. But a month after, they trapped her in a meeting and asked her to choose between her music career and her fashion business. SM and her fellow members claimed that it conflicted with performing schedules. SM also said that Jessica chose to leave the group due to personal reasons. They claimed that during “insufficient negotiations regarding conflicts of differences”, Jessica proceeded to start her business. They basically claimed she never officially secured agreement with the company.

Jessica said that she never wanted to leave SNSD. She claimed she was forced out. She claimed that the company and her members wanted her to choose, and she refused to choose between her two passions. The agency told her she could continue the fashion line under her renewed contract, but they also told her she was no longer a member of Girls’ Generation! Jessica sounded devastated on all of her responses, like she didn’t know this was coming. She even said she was excited about an up-coming fan event. Jessica said she was removed for no “justifiable reason”. The reason seems a little petty to me. It’s something that could’ve been resolved.

If it was Jessica’s decision to leave, why would she be acting so shocked? If this were her decision, she would be confirming these statements or staying quiet about it, like everyone else who has decided to leave SM.

Further, this doesn’t seem like an SM problem. Why do I think this has little to do with the label? Because they are still continuing to support her business, they are still using her name under their label, and they plan to debut Jessica as a solo artist. This leads me to believe this has something to do with the group-on a personal level.

Artists do solo activities ALL the time. Many artists around the world have run successful fashion lines as well as continued their careers. Since this is her business, I’m sure she could’ve adjusted her schedule so it wouldn’t interfere with promotion of her music. So why was she not given that chance? At least one chance to prove she can do it?

All of the SNSD members have had solo activities that have interfered with promotions. In fact, many of SM’s artists have. Just look at f(x). Okay, and I will admit that I’ve been seeing Jessica do a whole lot of solo activities lately. But shoot, they haven’t been a part of f(x). That’s all those girls do! And if Jessica has been hanging with baby sis Krystal, I’m sure she’s seen the benefit of securing herself in other areas besides music. SNSD isn’t getting any younger. They need other skills in order to continue their success. But that doesn’t mean she wanted to let her fans down!

And despite what they say about Jessica, she has NEVER missed a fan event! She’s been at all the events, schedules, and promotions, which is more than I can say about other members. So how has she been putting her business before the group? Furthermore, the business is too early on to make that kind of conclusion! She just started a month ago!

SM would not be against the fashion business as much as the members because it brings more money in their pockets, as they own the rights to Jessica’s name and they are funding the business. This has to do with hidden animosity within the group. Someone was not happy with Jessica. And I think it has little to do with the fashion business. SNSD’s Sub-unit, TTS, claimed that they were trying to protect the group’s interests, but that just sounds like Jessica was some sort of threat to them for whatever reason. They shed tears, but it’s hard to tell whether they are crying for Jessica or crying because people are pointing out their unethical move and it’s making them look bad.

Instead of seeing her business as acting against the group, they should’ve looked on the positive side. It actually could’ve promoted Girls’ Generation more! With fashion stores around the world, she would be bringing K-pop to everyone, simple because she was a member! It would’ve been like SNSD merchandise!

They claimed they wanted to make the best decision for the group. But if they were really thinking about the group’s interests as they claimed, they would’ve been thinking logically from a business perspective. They would’ve been thinking about declining sales, fan disappointment, poor customer service, extra work to re-do future performances where Jessica is included, etc. We could tell this was a bad decision. Shortly after, SM’s market value declined sharply! Negotiations, compromises, trying something new, supporting the business by adding some SNSD flavor to the business, like perfume and merchandise-there were so many things that could’ve been done to handle this situation! A group that really valued Jessica would fight to keep her there.

It’s amazing to me that they couldn’t see this opportunity…

SM has so many problems with members LEAVING their company or suing them. Why would they risk another lawsuit with Jessica or simply get rid of a girl that brings in some of their greatest revenue? They wouldn’t make up for loss with a loss! No. They wouldn’t do it without serious pressure to do so from somewhere. The pressure must have been coming from the other members.

I also find it funny that ALL 9 members agreed with this. You mean not one member objected to her being removed? They’ve moved on without her. Only the leader has made comments on it. At least with Kris, all the other members expressed their shock and disappointment.

Why would any of them pressure her to choose when they acted excited about it? Didn’t they understand that this would be a hard decision? That sounds a little like betrayal to me. A fortune-teller did tell Jessica that she had some “untrue” friends…

And yes, we don’t know the whole story. But no matter from what angle you tell this story, the other members are going to look bad. They look like witches in this situation.

Jessica could’ve been a tyrant, hard to work with, or completely neglecting the group in every way. Krystal said she had a strong personality and a bad temper. But if that were the case, couldn’t they have talked to her about her attitude first before jeopardizing the future success of the group? And if she was putting her business before her work, supposedly, why was she at EVERY event? She never missed ONE! They’ve gotten along this long, and we all work with people we can’t get along with. I’m sure the other members have sour points in their personalities. Still, it was not enough to remove her from the group. Why wasn’t an agreement made? Why weren’t the members a little more supportive of her dreams? Why now of all times? Something stinks.

And is it legal for them to remove her without notification or without her agreement? Her contract binds her to SNSD, not anything else. She’s a member and deserves a vote. It’s so rare you find a member fired rather than quitting!

This is the result of poor ethical business practices, and it reveals the mentality of the label, as well as the rest of the members. This much confusion from both parties is alarming. Jessica didn’t expect this, but SM said she chose this. Jessica claimed she secured agreement, but SM said it wasn’t official yet.

This is how I think it went down. Ahem: The agency and her group mates asked Jessica to choose between her business and her music. Jessica said she wasn’t going to make that decision. But Jessica started her business anyway. So, because she went ahead with her business, I guess they assumed Jessica made the decision to put her fashion before music. So, they decided for her and kicked her out of the group. As far as they were concerned, she made her choice. That’s what I think happened.

This is why Jessica should’ve gotten everything in writing. If someone agrees to something, it should be documented and signed. Then, she could prove that SM agreed to it. And thus, she could’ve had a winning lawsuit. But now, there is no telling who we can believe. It’s because she didn’t get it in writing, we have no choice but to believe SM when they said she didn’t secure agreement. I personally believe she told them about it and asked for the go-ahead, even if she can’t prove it. No one would jeopardize their career like that. I bet she’ll remember this in the future. So will I. This reminds me to secure everything I ask for in WRITING.

I just hope Jessica can continue both her music career and her fashion business. She’s good at both. I also hope this doesn’t affect Krystal from f(x).

I honestly don’t know if I respect the group after this. I can’t see them the same. To add, my favorite member was Jessica. She was the only member I followed with interest, and I will continue to.

This all honestly makes me worried about f(x)’s Sulli. I hope she doesn’t leave. I’m very worried. This was my first year being interested in the group, so I’m anxious about it.

This makes me wonder overall. Are these K-pop groups as close-knit as they portray themselves?

The IRONIC PART: Red Velvet just had a comeback with a concept that seemed more suitable for SNSD. It’s so convenient for SM to give Red Velvet songs to cover up their scandals.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think about all of these SM scandals!

My Frustrations with the “Modern Woman” and Her Feminist BS (Inspired from “Ladies First” by Elizabeth Cody Kimmel)

13 Oct

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The other day, I got a hold of a VERY inspirational book called Ladies First: 40 Daring American Women Who Were Second To None. This book is for intermediate learning, and I think it’s good for girls of tween-to-teen age to read. It’s just as impressive, if not more-so, than the American Girl book series. The real gem is that this book introduces girls to adult female figures who have done great things. This helps girls to realize their possibilities. And I just don’t want to say this to preach to girls about them thinking about their “future”. I literally think the book will inspire girls to “think” rather than “dream”.

I’m not the first to jump on the feminist brigade, but I have touched this base before:

To read more articles on feminism:

Frozen-A feminist movie?

Feminism, Chaivinism, and Misandry: The difference?

One thing I can agree with this book about is the fact that many of women’s achievements have been greatly ignored or scoffed at. As I flipped through this book, I recalled great forgotten figures in my own memory. This book focuses on 40 women who have been the “first” to do something. All of these women are of different races and social backgrounds, which makes the book even more appealing for me. As a woman and an African American, the book sparked my interest immediately. Some of my favorite female role models showed up. Wilma Rudolph, the “fastest woman in the world”. Madam C.J. Walker, the first African American self-made millionaire. Carrie Catt, lead woman suffragist at the Turn of the 20th Century. Hellen Keller, the first blind and deaf person to achieve a higher education. But then there were so many other women I knew nothing about that did so many exciting things!

It seems the only women recognized in the world are Amelia Earhart and Susan B. Anthony. Beyond those two, the other women fall behind. I like that this book brought out the record-breaking Nellie Bly, and her two major dares: She went undercover as a mentally insane person, enrolled in an asylum, and wrote about her experiences. She also took up a dare based off of the fictional book Around the World in 80 Days…and made it around the world in 72 days! Nellie Bly was determined to be a ground-breaking reporter, and was a great inspiration to me as a writer.

The other woman that struck my interest was a more modern hero: Katherine Switzer. She was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon at a time where women were considered too weak to run. She hid in a bush, and secretly ran with other men. She also dressed in “gender-neutral” clothing, signed herself up, which was against the rules, ran a race and won it. When she revealed she was a woman, she caused quite a raucous that proved women were capable of doing daring stunts.

Wilma Mankiller got a lot of heat for being the first female Chief of her tribe. I respect her so much. Despite living with racial prejudices, she had to deal with sexism and many other challenges.

Elizabeth Blackwell was the first woman to receive a medical degree. Her story is a bit funny. She tried to enroll in several colleges and was rejected. Colleges usually had a board of members, usually consisting of staff, decide who enters. But one college in particular let the students vote. When she signed up for their college, the students, being young, thought it was a prank. So they accepted her for laughs. Soon, they realized she wasn’t joking!  She became the first woman who could legally practice medicine.

So many stories, all entertaining and beautiful. I can’t begin to capture them all in this article.

Despite the beautiful stories and wonderful achievements of these women, something was missing. These women were the “first” of their kinds, true enough. But there was something I was looking for…and sadly, I only found that in one woman in this book. I was looking for ingenuity…INNOVATION. Basically, a female INVENTOR.

The only female in this book that invented something was Madame C.J. Walker. She was the ONLY woman who took up something that was not championed by men first. And what she created was exclusively interesting to women alone and not everyone. To add, it held so much controversy because the Black Community at the time claimed she was trying to make black girls’ hair “feel more like white girls”. Many of her products helped tame and straighten black girls’ hair, and many black people felt it was an invention that promoted “self-hate”. Sure, Harriet Quimby was the first female to receive her piloting license, but did she invent the airplane? No. Sure, Nellie Bly wanted to be an exciting reporter (and she did invent Investigative Reporting, something never done before), but did she invent newspapers? No. Of course, we know that many women have been excluded from history books, even when they did invent something. Though what’s stopping us now, I can’t imagine…

What I was looking for was the recognition of females who really “broke ground” in something that had never been thought of. I was hoping that old stereotype of women not being able to think outside of the box, of being too “scared” to dream up new things, would be broken with this book. But sadly, it was not. It was my only disappointment with this book.

I’ve been trying to find books of female inventors as a project. Sadly, I have come up short. I have been looking for women who invented great things, not just for maternal needs (like Kitchen items, baby items, food, fashion, cosmetics, and other things that only interest traditional women and no one else), but something scientific, electrical, tech: things that interest all age groups, genders, and backgrounds. Things that are “cutting-edge”. Two women showed up: Stephanie Kwolek invented Kevlar, a rod-like molecule that is used on bullet-proof vests, skis, radial tires, break pads, suspension bridge cables, helmets, and hiking gear. Another woman was Mary Anderson, inventor of the windshield wiper. Thank you, Mary! These are women that MEN can respect because they invented things that even MEN use today!

These women are hardly recognized for their achievements, and I thought it necessary to note them here. I am so tired of women being associated with only child-birth and the kitchen. Aren’t women capable of so much more? Maybe. Who knows. Maybe not…

Another thing that was sorely missing in this book was the list of YOUNG women. No one in the book was under the age of 50. Or even rather 60! It was almost as if progress stopped after a certain generation, and a new generation of dim-witted females rose to bring physical pleasure to men on television and movie screens. The large number of females became movie stars, models, and famous singers. In fact, the field is over-populated with women. The glam and glitz of everyone treating a female like a God, her having to be lazy and taken care of by someone else, and the fact that she gets to wear so many “cute outfits” drew in women…and returned them to their traditional state-of-mind, though with modern masks. Then the rise in teen pregnancy outside of wedlock, which sadly stifled many young girls’ progress…Oh yes, and now the rise of dead-beats, since women can now “take care of themselves”.

I’m not here to scoff at these achievements. Being an actress, model, and singer is hard-work, and there are men there, too. But I find men to stretch themselves among a variety of talents (Sports, acting, music, science, etc), whereas women tend to limit themselves and follow each other…or rather, MEN. They are attracted to a life of ease, not a life of excitement, thrill, adventure. Men are naturally more curious about the world and our existence today, and it almost seems that all women are interested in is their boyfriend, his life, their social life, and what outfits they are wearing to so-and-so’s party. Don’t we think that the world of the celebrity is a little too over-populated with women? Perhaps, just maybe, we might be able to find women who, I dunno, want to try other things. Maybe I’m hoping for too much…Isn’t it fun to be both a celebrity and a scientist? With the money these celebrities make, I’m shocked none of them have truly taken advantage of this. No wait, I’m not shocked.

My big question is: Where are our modern women? Our modern women are a large consumer crowd, buying Galaxy and Apple phones and other products, spending hours on video games, and wearing fashions invented by WHO? MEN. There are more male fashion designers! What? But what have women contributed to the modern world? Modern women can no longer live on the breath of the women of the past. What are WE doing today? Are we progressing into greater women, becoming stronger feminists or…digressing from the main point of feminism?

When I look at women today, talking all of their feminist bull-crap, which usually surrounds how men look at them, I laugh to myself. Feminism today is nothing but a bluff. It’s a bunch of butt-hurt women, who before their precious hearts were broken by their “boyfriends”, they hardly thought of women empowerment. What they really become are female chauvinists and/or misandrists. You know why men today don’t respect women? Because women don’t respect themselves. They talk the “female game” after they have already burned their bridges. In fact, all of these women are just…TALK. What HAVE these women done to prove themselves? What amazing feats have they conquered? And I’m not scoffing at the small contributions that are not any less significant. After all, I’m a small contributor, as an educator (that’s how I’m able to get a hold of books). But maybe that’s just it. We women have been thinking too small. We’ve been too satisfied with our “small” efforts. We lack insight. We want to force men to respect us through loud words and open minds, but we have not applied anything to action. Are we too afraid to go against the grain? Are we too shallow to achieve a larger brain capacity?

I recently asked a question about women inventors on Yahoo Answers, as I was trying my project. One response I got was from a male. He answered: “The extreme lack of female open source programmers proves women’s brains are different. [There] is no discrimination in that work at home field.. Women just aren’t interested in tech.” Could I get angry at such a bold statement? Could I rant and rave that he is wrong to judge women, or that he is wrong about our minds being different? No. I couldn’t. You know why? Because logically, I have no modern examples to prove him wrong. Have women created I-pads, XBox games and consoles, or touch-screen cell-phones? Have women created social networking websites like facebook, youtube, and twitter? Are women today even INTERESTED in technology? NO. And yet, we use these things more than men do. Are we doomed to follow men the rest of our lives without inventing anything that interests the consumer world? Or are men truly the “greater” part of our species as humans?

Women hold on to child-birth as the beauty of their gender, but it is the very thing that links them to animals, not to a greater species more intelligent than a horse, cow, rabbit, or fish. Whereas men can say that their inventions and intelligence have proven them to be greater than any living male species on the planet. Have women thus shown men that they are inferior? This has to change.

It’s ignorant to say that men have bigger imaginations than women. But it appears that men are more than likely to follow through with their dreams and make it a reality. Women will only invent things that are practical for everyday living…but not usually something for entertainment, like video games. BORING.

Come to think of it, as much as women shop, I’m surprised that there haven’t been any women who have created major department stores or super markets, such as Walmart…But I’m a little more relieved that women haven’t fallen into that stereotype. Still, it just further proves that women have hardly invented anything noteworthy outside of items that are exclusively used in the home, and have just ridden on the success of men.

The goal of this article is to bring new thoughts on women’s progress to the plate, and inspire a stronger future for women.

My Experiences with Woman-hood and My Push for a Better Female Experience

If I sound like a self-hating female to you, you might be on to something. Currently, I can’t psycho-analyze myself and expect to be objective, but I can tell you that my experiences with the women in my life and my own womanhood have been nasty.

I grew up with a mother who was girlish on the outside (into fashion, make-up, etc) , but not fond of the main fundamental points of woman-hood: child-birth. My mother did not plan to have me. When she was pregnant with me, she was in her early twenties. I know, many women have had children much younger than that. But the thing is, my mother was not ready to have children. She wanted to have fun and live life. My mother even told me she thought of dropping herself down a flight of stairs so she could miscarry. I know, who would tell their children this? She says that I have grown to be a blessing in her life as an adult, but she always discouraged pregnancy. Not only does my mother suffer from a “youth syndrome”, where she never wants to be called grandmother, but my mother also wants to live her life and has made it perfectly clear she will not support me by baby-sitting or taking care of any child I accidentally have. At first I thought to myself, “All parents say that at first”. But then I think about how she’s always treated children…She really always felt children were holding her back. She got rid of the two children who came after me. She just couldn’t be pregnant. My mother was into her looks and having fun. She always dumped me and my sibling with baby-sitters. I never bonded with her. You know how mothers usually hold their newborns in their arms once they have them? Not my mother. She refused to look at me until later. This is what she told me from her mouth. My mother went out partying the day after I was born and stuck me with a baby-sitter. I’ve never had a mother who “bonded” with me. I don’t even understand mother-daughter bonds. I always think, “Won’t they get sick of each other after awhile?”

Thus, she instilled her own ideas in me. She thought of pregnancy as a curse that would end a young woman’s life. She thought of pregnancy as something miserable, something to mourn about. Well, for her, it was. She was always deathly ill. She almost died having me. She was always tired, and everything was expensive. She felt she lost herself as she felt she had to take care of someone else. It always felt like obligation rather than love…I grew up hating woman-hood.

Eventually, I began to form the same thoughts. However, I would always think to myself. I would always say, “If pregnancy is this horrible, and having children is such misery, why was I born a woman?” I used to be so jealous of men. I was jealous of how they could have sex with anyone and never get pregnant. They wouldn’t need “protection”. Men could have many children and never know them by name. And it wouldn’t matter if the men accepted responsibility, except to the women stuck with the children. I grew up thinking that men lived a lucky life. Nothing could ever hold a man back from living life. In this way, I envied the fact that this made men young forever. They never had to take responsibility if they didn’t want to. And of all the moral BS you can throw at them, it was still their choice. For women, it never felt like they had a choice. It just felt so limited. With men, life was just pleasure. With women, it seemed pleasure always came with pain.

I didn’t grow up viewing babies as humans with feelings. Women would tell me how beautiful it was, but due to my upbringing, I just couldn’t understand it. Child-birth is beautiful? It seemed stressful, hard, and limiting to me.

Even as I grew up, this up-bringing has stayed with me. But now I’m older. I no longer believe that everything my mother taught me was right. My relationship with my mother grew very tense as the beliefs I developed began to differ greatly from my mother’s. First, I grew into a tomboy, which was a far cry from my prissy mother who just wished I would wear a dress and heels sometimes. My appearance was the only thing she paid attention to when it came to me. And at these times, she found many moments to look down on me and execute her critical judgment. Thus, I ended up resenting all the glitz and glamour that most women were into. Fashion was not fun or a way for me to value myself. It was just another chore. So no, I don’t believe in dressing up to impress men. If I liked a guy, I would just tell him. If he likes me for who I am, just like I to him, then he’s worth my time. When I sense superficiality, I’m gone…I’ve been taught all men are superficial…So, I just stopped caring altogether. This was a far cry from my mother. It was her only expectation of me, and it was the one expectation I had a hard time meeting.

Second, I began to work with children. I’ve seen that children are a responsibility, but I’ve also learned that they can be your best friends. Like any human, it is about how you treat them. Children know when they are loved. Through examples of some good mothers, I’ve seen that children haven’t limited them, but helped their mothers in many ways. Still, that in-born fear stays with me, and I just can’t have children.

Well, literally. My doctor told me that if I had children, I wouldn’t live. I’m frail. Woman-hood has cursed me. My own menstrual cycle has been monstrous. It has been so severe, that I become extremely ill. I’ve fainted twice in public during my school days. I’ve…gruesomely…puked. It was also these moments that I envied men. Why were women stuck with such awful bodies? My self-hatred grew. Why couldn’t we share the pain?

My own hatred with the women in my life and with my own woman-hood has put distance between me and other women. It caused me to distrust women greatly. It’s the main reason I can’t be a lesbian, even if I tried.

Don’t worry. It’s no better with men. Though I’ve always gotten along with men better than women (which is why I enjoy their company more), I never trust men, so it’s hard for me to be deeply involved. I’ve hurt some feelings. None of the father-figures in my life have been trust-worthy, from my father on down. They have all been liars and cheaters. I was even told that “All men cheat” by several men. At one time, this made me question why any woman would want to deal with men at all. But in my family, I have found some good men and bad. This was more than I could say about the women in me life…

However, as I grow into a mature adult, I realize there are ways to resolve my relationships with the genders, and thus humanity. I’ve thrown myself into studying the genders. I’ve found that both genders have a lot to work on in order to iron out the kinks created by the ignorance of our ancestors.

I am determined to create a brighter future for women who want more out of life, who want to strengthen their self-esteem and confidence. I am determined to look at woman-hood as something to be proud of. What I wanted to know most, what I needed to resolve in my heart, is whether our bodies limit us truly, or whether we are as capable as men?

Through the Ladies First book, I’ve seen women with large families…and yet they have still done great things. Many of these women have had husbands, have lived hard, simple lives, and have had much opposition. Did it stop them? No. If they didn’t let anything stop them, what stopped my mother? What is stopping women now? Nothing.

I’ve realized that all of woman’s obstacles has made woman a strong gender. She is responsible, driven, and practical. She is capable of many things, despite her own weaknesses. I realize that this marginalized position gives women the chance to do great things. Where a white man will just be labeled the first person if he is, a woman can be the first person and the first WOMAN. Men will only be recognized if they are first. But if a woman does it first, and a man does it second, he won’t be recognized as the first man to do anything. I know this sounds unfair, but it just shows us that maybe men are not so lucky after all, even if most of them feel lucky. Her obstacles truly makes her worthy of respect when she achieves something because we know how hard it must have been for her. ;) So much so when this woman is of a marginalized ethnicity. This is why I now appreciate my woman-hood.

But there is always room for improvement. Perhaps there is more women could be doing.

What is Stopping Women Today?

1) Child-birth

The greatest excuse women have is having children. Many women give up their goals when they begin to start a family. And hey, some women choose a new passion in life. And that’s alright. But why is it that men always continue their careers after they have families? This doesn’t apply to all women, but a good number. I will give an example. Lacy from the band Flyleaf was the lead vocalist. She made the band as great as it is today. The moment she got pregnant, what did she do? She quit the band. She gave up her career. If she’d have been a man, a new baby wouldn’t have stopped her. And heck, there are a lot of celebrities who have children, but still continue their careers, like Beyonce. I knew raising children is a hard job as it is. But I don’t think it’s any harder for women than men. Men have it built in their mind-sets that they have to provide for their families. That should be built in a woman’s mind-set, too. Even if you have a husband who takes care of you, you have to think of “eventualities”. I know it’s scary to think about, but sudden deaths and lay-offs occur. If you haven’t developed a skill, how will you continue to help your family survive when the Mr. can’t? It’s something to think about. Single mothers, you are capable of so much. It’s amazing that you are the main provider as it is. Still, ladies, don’t let it limit you from shooting for great.

2) Physical Appeal

Ladies, I know appearance is important to a certain degree, but it isn’t everything. Women need to actually stop focusing on their appearance, and yes, risk losing the interest of their partner. We were not born glamorous. We were not born fake. Don’t take away the beauty you were born with by obsessing over looks. You will expose the real man when you show the real you. These music celebrities focus so much on their appearance. They dress up in glamorous clothes and make-up and this influences young girls to think that appearances are important. It’s alright to do this. It’s not wrong, it just doesn’t give girls many options in the world. I think other professions should be promoted more in the home, on the internet, and on t.v. screens.

3) Traditional Viewpoints

There are still women out here who believe that a woman’s place is at home, taking care of babies, and in the kitchen. I was watching Wife Swap on Lifetime the other day, and I just couldn’t believe there were so many women who believed women should be at home, while the man should be a “man” and work. Well, in my opinion, a man who stays home with the kids has just as much of a job as a man working with the public. And I feel if it makes a man less valuable, it should make a woman less valuable if she sits on her butt all day, too. After all, a human at home is no different, no matter the gender. If you belittle a man who stays at home, wouldn’t that mean you are belittling most women who stay at home? But that’s a subject for another day…

There are also women out here who throw me the bull-crap that women are more nurturing, and thus they have to give up their careers when they have children. They believe it’s the woman’s job to bond with the kids. I disagree. It’s BOTH parents responsibility to bond with the children, but it’s also BOTH parents’ responsibility to house, clothe, and feed their children. Some women want to be spoiled and pampered like children while men never get to experience such privileges. And many of these women don’t appreciate their “servants” aka men. This is coming from one episode on Mom Swap that sickened me. This spoiled rich lady had her husband bring her breakfast in bed. He did all the cooking, all the cleaning, and he worked. And all she did was shop, whine, and boss her husband around! She acted like a child! I couldn’t even believe she was an adult! And she thought her life was so hard because she had to spend time with her daughters…

4) Laziness

This brings up my next point. Some of these women today are just plain lazy. They would rather let the men invent everything and they just enjoy the ride. Women are too tired to work their brains.

OVERALL,

What’s missing in our world are women who have the guts that the women in this book have. The ability to dare. As modern as it’s supposed to be, feminism has only been an idea. I have yet to see any women today stepping up and trying to push the envelope. Where are our inventors? Where are our modern women who have an imagination that thinks larger than our existence? Where are our women who push for the respect of the world?

Hopefully, in the future, we see a female topping Apple products. I hope to see a woman create a major video game title. I hope to see a woman burst out her “inner child” and create a more advanced future. Perhaps that woman could be me. I want to do more, just as I’m encouraging others to.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think about modern feminism and progress. If you know any modern women who have made the same differences, please tell me them and I will take back what I have said. Though I’m still pushing for more women to do great things. Walk the walk, don’t be about talk.

Got7’s Ideal Woman Types by Moon and Venus signs (Hints from Mars)

5 Oct

In favor of two of my favorite readers who have been curious, Pearlgem and fadebubble, Got7 fans, I decided to create another Got7 article based on Got7’s ideal types based on their Moon signs and Venus signs, and some secrets about Mars.

I’m not a huge boy band type of woman. I absolutely used to abhor the idea of a bunch of men getting famous simply for their attractive looks and nothing more. But Got 7…let’s just say they broke me. These men are VERY talented. I’ve had the honor of watching their video “Girls Girls Girls” and I was impressed. Their aerobatic dance moves really stood out. And yes, they are just REALLY hot. My personal favorite has become the wildly confident Jackson.

I first got to know Got7 on a We Got Married Global interview with Soryoung from Tasty and Amber from f(x). I’ve been hooked ever since. There were only three members in that interview, but it certainly sparked my interest for the group. I did an article on it, which actually is the inspiration for this article as well.

We Got Married Global with Got 7: Who will win Amber’s affections?

Because I know Got7 stirs the hearts of MANY young ladies, this article will be very interesting information for those interested. I’m sure all of you would like to know their ideal types. Well, there are some ways we can find out without having to directly ask them. We can find it by reading their Moon and Venus signs on their natal charts.

This is for the IGOT7 fans.

I’m sure many of you have heard of zodiac signs. They are actually called Sun signs, and they aren’t the only signs on your natal chart. We actually all have 10 planetary signs each. Each planet fits into 12 houses on a big wheel on a natal chart. There are also aspects, often recognized by little symbols, that show the relationships between all of your planets on the natal chart.

Here are some articles that can help you find out more:

http://www.astro.com This is to get a natal chart. sign up for a free account! go to free horoscopes on the left hand side, press horoscope drawings, extended chart, edit data, you may need birth time which you can get from birth certificate or parent, or for now, use 12 noon though not recommended. Press blue button.
http://www.alwaysastrology.com A good place for all 10 of your signs, and rising sign
http://www.skyscript.co.uk/sunaspects.html A good place for aspects
http://astrology-numerology.com/astrology_houses.html A good place for house placements
http://www.horoscopeswithin.com/planetsinhouses.php A good place for planets in house
Aspects are those little symbols to the right of the signs: a triangle, a figure 8, an asterisk, mars symbol, and a square are the important symbols. Houses are those 12 divisions in the middle of that big wheel.

That being said, I’ll just explain what Moon and Venus represent in a man’s chart.

Even though we live in modern times, there are still parts of a man’s thinking that holds traditional values. That being said, there is a part of a man that expects a woman to be supportive, as well as attractive. That’s where the planets Moon and Venus come in. Traditionally, Moon and Venus represented femininity. Since men are still uncomfortable with their own feminine sides, and since women also have not accepted these sides in men, it has been projected. Thus, men are looking for women who embody the traits of their Moon and Venus signs.

Venus, in a man’s chart, represents the woman he is instantly attracted to. Venus is very physical and superficial. Whatever he is looking for on the immediate, in order to catch his eye to even look your way, it has to somewhat match his Venus. This has to continue when he’s on his first date, or when he’s getting to know you for the first time after you start your relationship. Your Venus sign may not match his. And yet he may still see these qualities in you. How? What he is seeing is a mirror of his own love style. He is projecting this love style on you, hoping that you will meet the need. In other words, we often can appear or reflect qualities from other areas of our chart that may not necessarily be related to our Venus sign, but can be attractive to him. For instance, he may have his Venus in Libra. Perhaps you have Venus in Capricorn. BUT your Moon may be in Libra, or your Sun may be in Libra. Or you might have Venus in the first house. In any case, he is seeing something in you that can satisfy his own Venus. He is seeing something in you that is really HIM struggling to show his own feminine side.

In everyone’s chart, Venus rules our love style, how we show love, what we think love really is, and how we think our significant other should show us love. Basically, we don’t feel loved if these needs aren’t being met. For instance, if someone has Venus in Leo, they only feel loved if their other is giving them a certain amount of attention. They need someone who will buy them expensive gifts and treat them like a king/queen. If they feel ignored, they will feel unloved. They feel this is what love is.

Venus is naturally at home in the signs of Taurus and Libra, and at it’s best in Pisces. It’s naturally uncomfortable in the signs of Aries and Scorpio, and at it’s worst in Virgo.

More on that here: Venus signs and dignities

The Moon, on the other hand, is much deeper. The Moon represents the emotions, nurture, the roots, the mother, and anything we are attached to. In a man’s chart, this rules over his life-long partner, and his over-all view of women in general. This is a reflection of his emotional needs, and the woman that captures his heart will make him feel connected to her. He needs to know that she understands him. It is not easy for men to express their feelings, as society makes it hard for men to express their feelings, and women limit a man from expressing weakness as they project Mars. In order for a man to feel safe enough to express his weak sides, because all men have them, he needs to feel she will understand him. This is where the Moon comes in.

This side shows up when he’s on a date with you or dating you for the first time, but right after Venus. It’s never superficial, so there is no way an attractive appearance can match this planet, unless his Moon is in Venus-ruled signs like Taurus or Libra. Men don’t mind dating attractive women, but to really feel connected with a girl beyond her looks, in order for him to really care about a woman, he needs to feel she cares about him. He needs to be able to trust you.

Moon is naturally comfortable in the sign of Cancer and at it’s best in the sign of Taurus. Moon is naturally uncomfortable in the sign of Capricorn and at it’s worst in the sign of Scorpio.

What does Mars have to do with any of this? Well, Mars does not represent his ideal type of woman. It’s how he expresses his own masculinity and his inner man, which can translate as his ideal man, which he will try to embody. But by observing his Mars sign, you will begin to understand whether this guy likes you or not. In relationships, men use Mars to persuade a woman to choose him. Basically, he uses Mars to impress the woman he is interested in. So, you’ll know if you’ve become his ideal type once he starts acting on his Mars energy. If you are a homosexual male, and you want to turn this guy out, tapping into his Sun and Mars energy would work best…

On a date, he’s looking for someone who LOOKS like his Venus (clothing), but ACTS like his Moon.

Of course, you also have to consider other factors in the chart, such as aspects to Moon and Venus, and the house placements of the two planets. But for now, we will focus on their Moon and Venus signs.

This is where Got7 comes in.

Let’s observe their Moon and Venus.

*Warning: I do not encourage women to put on an “act” to fit the needs of these men. Be yourself. This information is purely to understand your favorite celebrities from an astrological point of view. If you find that some of the qualities fit with your natural personality, that’s great! But don’t ever try to fake it. Your real self will come out eventually. It’s better to live the truth than a lie.*

 Mark

Got7Mark

Mark is such a cutie! Words can’t describe the cute-ness that is Mark. The moment I laid my eyes on him, I thought that this guy was attractive. His cool, quiet, and mature demeanor makes him extra special to the ladies! He is the oldest, so why not? I was quite interested in his Venus and Moon…Not that I plan on dating him or anything. I just recognize the guy has some serious cool and collected charms…

When asked his ideal type, this was his response: On my profile, it says I like a girl who makes me want to be with her. There’s those girls who you meet, and then, you just kind of forget about them. You can meet them as friends, but then there’s those other girls where you just want to keep meeting them. Those kind of girls.

His Venus is in the proud, loud, and demonstrative sign of Leo. From his response, he wants a girl who is unforgettable. He is looking for that girl that MAKES him want to be with her. That means she has to be the best! Leo being a proud sign, Leo can be demanding. They have their dignity, you know! So, this kind of guy is more than likely looking for the “best girl”, a girl that makes him proud. This could be the prettiest, the most popular, the sweetest, or the richest. Whatever she champions, it will stop him in his tracks and make him take notice. He more than likely wants a girl that grabs attention where ever she goes! That means she’s going to have to carry a measure of confidence about her, doesn’t it? Leo is ruled by the Sun, so he wants a girl that all the men flock to, a woman that seems to have everyone kneeling before her and showering her with attention. He wants a girl who makes a powerful impression. He wants a Queen Bee. Leos tend to have a strong magnetism and charisma about them. Mark has these qualities himself, but he may project them on the woman of his dreams. He wants someone that literally is a star! But of course, he doesn’t want a woman who thinks she’s more of a star than he is! He wants a woman who strokes his own ego a bit. His Venus sign is ruled by the Sun, as mentioned before, and his Sun is in Virgo. Therefore, he might like someone who is a little more humble and demure. If she shines, he may want her to be humble about it or not self-centered.

While men often broadcast their ideal types as far as Venus goes, it’s not as easy to pin the Moon. Moon is personal. Sometimes, even men don’t recognize these needs. They may see it as reflection of the nurturing figure in their lives, like their mothers. But because this man has needs, he will attach to a woman that meets his emotional needs. He may not recognize this until later. Mark has his Moon in Aries. He needs his independence. He needs a woman who is fine with him doing his own thing. This means he will be looking for a woman who has her own life. He will stay longer with a woman that doesn’t cling to him or put any pressure on him to commit. He feels more secure around a woman who is straight-forward about her feelings. He feels insecure around insecure women. As a celebrity, he travels a lot. It’s pretty obvious that he’s going to need someone who can handle him being away for long periods of time, and someone who can handle him being around so many women. You definitely can’t be insecure! Mars is in Libra, however, creating a conflict. Mars is uncomfortable in Libra. While he wants independence, he also needs a secure partner, someone he can do everything with. Mars in Libra makes him more worried, therefore, even more insecure. A secure woman is definitely needed to ease this man’s soul.

Hint: If you land a date with him, he likes a woman for looks over personality. He likes flashy clothing and accessories with a lot of gold. He will probably also like a woman with a voluminous head of hair, particularly in blonde. He is looking for women who are brave, competitive, assertive, and independent. A girl who isn’t afraid to challenge him or who plays hard to get is his cup of tea. Try challenging him to a board game or something adventurous like racing dirt bikes.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: When he likes a girl, having Venus in Leo, he’s generous and treats her like a queen. He will shower her with affection, gifts, and a whole lot of attention. He will boast and brag about a woman he likes to all of his friends. He will certainly show his pride. He will certainly try to get her attention. Having Mars in Libra, the man will try to impress her with his natural charms. He will try to be a gentlemen. Chivalry will be his strength. He will try to show her how thoughtful he is. He will also show off his amazing good looks by dressing to impress. He will try to show off his skill with flirting. He wants her to see him as a ladies’ man. He will also try to consider her in all of his plans and show her that he is all about playing fair. He will act gracefully and diplomatically to show her how easy-going and peaceful he is. He wants a woman to see that he’s not out to dominate her, and is willing to treat her like an equal. He will give her anything she wants, and has a hard time saying no. This is why Mars is in Detriment in this sign. It’s hard for him to say no to other girls, even when he’s already dating one. He’s out to please, but sometimes he tries to please too many people.

JB

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Someone at J.Y.P. once said he lacked swag. Well, we can see THAT has changed! I notice that when this man walks into the room, he exudes confident swag! As the leader, I guess it’s natural. He comes across a bit serious, but he’s also cool! There is a mysterious air surrounding him. It draws women to him all the time! He has a lot of skills, and loves to impress women with them. He also likes to look good for the ladies.

When asked his ideal type, his response: Someone who catches my eye. I don’t really care how they look or even really care about their heart. Just someone who catches my eye and that I can’t stop thinking about.

His Venus is in the cold and calculating Capricorn. No wonder this man’s “serious side” is his main charm! Capricorn rules Saturn, the planet of serious limitations and consequences. This man is mature, and he is looking for a woman who is mature as well. He’s not looking for someone attractive, neither does he care about her heart (which I translate as being sweet and kind). The fact that he cares little about those traits is very Capricornian. Those traits are a bit juvenile for Capricorn. Capricorn is about committed and serious relationships. Looks fade over time, and so is not a practical requirement, and Capricorn finds “sweet” personalities to be overrated and to represent vulnerability. He’s not looking for a dream, he’s looking for the real deal! Capricorn wants a strong, capable woman, and possibly someone ambitious. He wants a woman who is serious about him. He mentioned that he’s looking for someone that “catches his eye”. Capricorn is looking for someone who is distinct. This sign is about respect, and they want someone with a good status and a good reputation. This man is often attracted to older women because older women tend to have full-time jobs, solid reputations, and more experience in the world. He is especially attracted to sensible women, someone who has their life in order. Saturn is at home in Aquarius, so he really doesn’t want an emotional woman. He prefers a cool and collected type even more than the average Venus in Capricorn.

His Moon is in the deep and intense sign of Scorpio. He has some very deep, dark secrets hidden within. His emotions are complicated. This is probably why there is a wall of mystery surrounding him. This man doesn’t let his feelings show that often unless he’s absolutely certain he can trust you. Generally, Moon is falling in the sign of Scorpio. Relations with women are complex and a bit uncomfortable. He needs a woman that is willing to give her all to him. He needs a quiet, secretive woman. Life as a celebrity can be hard. Everyone is always watching him, especially as the leader. A secretive and shrewd woman would make sure that his life stays as private as possible. She would be able to prove she can be trusted. It’s hard for this man to form emotional attachments, thus commitment is a challenge. But once he commits, he is full-throttle. His bonds can be extremely strong, almost to the point where he can’t let you go anywhere away from him! He needs someone who is not afraid to dive into an intense relationship. She has to be fearless. He needs a woman who can see beyond the surface. He needs someone who doesn’t require a lot of attention or affection, as both are hard for him to bring out on the immediate. This man needs a woman who can endure. This means he needs someone as mysterious and complex as he is. Only someone like him can truly understand him and connect with him on an emotional level. Still, the woman must be prepared for emotional roller-coaster rides. Mars is exalted in Capricorn, adding even more aloofness and maturity, so he’s not likely to reveal anger that often. Pity, babyish, whining behavior are irritants that are likely to set him off and affect his emotions. Scorpio’s other ruler is Pluto, and that is right at home in Scorpio. This makes him even more intense and mysterious.

Hint: If you land a date with him, he likes dark-haired girls who dress business-like, sophisticated, but understated in her manner of dress. He may be interested in taking women to a horror film. He is looking for someone who is sexy in their flirting style, intense, and mysterious. It will take a while for him to open up, as he has to be sure he can trust you.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: Having Venus in Capricorn, this man generally tries to keep his cool when he likes someone. He tends to be serious. When he likes a girl, he is traditional in his approach. He may buy flowers and candy, take you to nice restaurants, and treat you like a lady by opening car doors and chairs. Having Mars in Capricorn, he will try to impress you by showing off his skills and his accomplishments. He will want you to see him as a mature and responsible man. He will flip out his wallet of money just to show you how hard he works. He will take charge of a situation just so you can see how “in control” he is. He will plan an evening with you in mind. Most important, he will always show up on time just to show how competent he is.

Jr.

junior_1389107905_20140107_Junior2

This man seems very personable. He’s warm and inviting. He seems like the romantic type. He’s also very funny and lively. He has a beautiful smile and smiles often. He has a lot of charisma and a lot of swag. So, here comes his Venus and Moon.

For his ideal girl, he made this statement: On my profile, it says that I like girls with pretty smiles and that show their teeth when they smile. I like girls who just smile big and brightly because you can see that true side of them. Also, I like girls who love their work. I was always told that someone who can really love their work also knows how to sincerely love a person.

His Venus is in the deep and intense sign of Scorpio. It’s no wonder he is boiling with charisma! Scorpio is a passionate and mysterious sign. But Scorpios want the real you. What stands out to me about his statement is that the fact that he wants to see the “true side” of a woman. Scorpio is a no-bull sign (funny, being the opposite sign of the Bull, Taurus). They literally want someone who is honest and straight-forward. This doesn’t mean he wants someone who talks a lot. He wants someone quiet and secretive, but someone who never tells a lie when they do speak. I would say he likes a girl who is good at the art of omission. He wants a woman who is in love with their work. Again, Scorpio is a passionate sign. If she’s passionate about what she does in life,  it often reflects as passion in a relationship for him. They often confuse passion for love. He may feel a bit controlling. Venus is naturally in a detrimental position when it enters Scorpio. This man will always attract drama because he secretly desires a woman that shakes up his life. He thrives on chaos and drama, even if he doesn’t realize it. He wants a meaningful relationship, so he is attracted to women who exude a serious air about them. Sex is a huge part of Scorpio, so he wants someone who is sexy, that’s for sure. He may want someone who exudes almost an animal magnetism. His Mars is in Cancer, and Mars is not comfortable in Cancer. The ruthless ambition and passion is softened. He may have power struggles with women. He may want someone a bit on the sweet and traditional side as a result. Pluto is in Scorpio, so the mystery and intrigue has to be there.

Moon is in the energetic and lively sign of Aries. With the Moon there, his needs are very similar to Mark’s. This is probably why they hit it off. Usually when people have compatible Moon signs, they tend to understand one another, and that makes them close….As close as two independent fire signs can be, that is. Like Mark, he needs his independence. This means he needs a woman who is also independent and does her own thing. He needs a woman who is lively and full of energy. He can’t be bored. It frustrates him to sit at home all the time. He needs a woman who keeps herself young and lively. He doesn’t like when things are too serious. It makes him feel uncomfortable. He needs a woman he can laugh with. He needs a woman who is brave. In order to deal with being in the limelight and living the high-energy life he needs to live, she has to be someone who has plenty of energy and courage to keep up with him. Otherwise, don’t hold him back. He can’t deal with clingy, emotional types. Again, Mars is in Cancer. So, his energy level fluctuates according to his moods. This can be hard to deal with. When he is irritated, he gets really irrational. He needs a creative outlet, so music is perfect for him. He may want someone who is a bit more emotional and clingy than the average Moon in Aries. This is a mutual reception. While he needs energy, his energy is guided by his moods. So, he also doesn’t mind a home-loving woman who can be there to support him when he has his “down” moments.

Hint: If you land a date with him, he likes women who dress sexy and wear red and/or black. He may like see-through tops or dresses. He is looking for someone who is brave, competitive, assertive, and independent. A girl who isn’t afraid to challenge him or who plays hard to get is his cup of tea. Try challenging him to a board game or something adventurous like racing dirt bikes.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: With a Venus in Scorpio like his, expressing his loving feelings are a challenge. He is shy and has trust issues. Venus is in detriment in this sign. He loves deeply and intensely, and tends to be consumed, almost obsessed, with a girl he likes. He tends to do deep research and learn all he can about her. He might seem a little desperate. He has stalking tendencies. He watches closely. His jealous tendencies are very strong. He may not like seeing you around anyone but him. Again, Mars is in Cancer. When he wants to impress a girl, he tries to remember important dates and events, like her birthday. He tries to get to know her family, friends, and anyone else close to her. He will also introduce you to the ones he’s close to. He tries to be thoughtful. He may reveal personal feelings and will listen to yours if he feels you’re the one. He’s indirect about his actions and may shower a girl with romantic gifts like flowers and candy. He may even try to cook for the girl he likes. He tries to show her how sharp his memory is by remembering all of the things she told him about herself. He will try to be romantic.

Jackson

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This guy is my favorite. I love this guy. “Sexy and Wild” is how he describes himself, and this shows. Extroverted, boyish, and edgy, his charisma is infectious. This guy has a lot of personality and is not afraid to shine. He likes to play the “alpha” male role by being a protector. I did already review his complete natal chart for We Got Married Global. Check that article out by clicking me.

His statement:  I like healthy, sporty girls. Athletic girls.

His Venus is in Aries. This simple statement sums up his Venus in Aries. Aries is considered the most masculine sign in the zodiac, and it is ruled by the masculine planet of Mars. When putting Venus in this sign, we have the feminine energy entering the aggressive and masculine territory. Thus, this man likes a woman who is like the boys. Possibly, he likes a woman who’s a little tomboyish…which was probably why he showed fondness for f(x)’s Amber. ;) He wants a woman who understands men and the way men think. He is attracted to independent women, and definitely a challenge. He’s not attracted to women who are easy. He wants someone who has her own mind and is decisive. He wants a youthful woman with a lot of energy. This is probably why he wants someone healthy and sporty. He wants a girl he can compete with, as competition gets his adrenaline going and makes his life exciting. So, if she is an athlete, he’s sold. That brings up another point. This man gets bored easily, so he may attract women who bring drama and chaos in his life. He needs a woman who can spice it up, someone with a sense of fun and adventure. Venus is not comfortable in Aries for obvious reasons. The expectations for women to be strong, bold, and courageous are not usual standards for women as they are for men. Well, a bit today, but not as much as the standards to be pretty and a decent, moral, human being. This makes his interests hard for women to live up to. It’s no wonder he’s my favorite. My Venus is also in Aries! Mars is in Pisces, giving him a mixed mutual reception (Aries is ruled by Mars, Venus is exalted in Pisces). He is less selfish and aggressive than the average Venus in Aries, thus he will be attracted to women are a bit gentle and compassionate. He really wants someone who accepts him for who he is. He may also be attracted to someone who is musically inclined.

His Moon is in the graceful and diplomatic sign of Libra. This is the opposite sign of Aries, so his interests in women are a bit confusing. One minute, he is attracted to athletic, independent, and strong-willed women, and the next, his needs don’t seem to be settled because he needs someone who needs him around. This man needs peace and solitude. His life can move a bit dramatically, but when he comes home, he needs a loving and beautiful environment, where no disruptions occur. He can’t stand to be alone, so he needs someone who is willing to spend a lot of time with him. He’s a social guy, and needs to hang around his friends. He needs a woman who accepts his friends and also someone who likes to socialize.This is in far contrast to the woman he is attracted to. However, his Moon is ruled by Venus, so he still needs an independent woman to some degree. He needs beauty in his life, so it’s best for him to have someone he is attracted to around him. He likes to be himself with the Venus in Aries, and that makes him feel at peace. However, peace could also mean getting his way all the time. In this case, he can be selfish. Yet, he still needs some equilibrium, so he will like things to be fair. He needs a woman who remembers to be fair and thoughtful. He needs to know that his partner cares for him. He needs love in his life, so his need for a partner is stronger than the average person. He needs a woman who makes wise decisions. While he may be indecisive, he likes to come to the best decisions. Someone who can help him with this is preferred.

Hint: If you finally land a date with him, he likes a woman who is athletic in her style of dress, thin, and has muscle tone. He will probably like the color red so you could wear that around him. He is looking for a woman to be sweet, easy to get along with, and have a lot of friends. He just wants things to be harmonious and beautiful so any conflict will not go over well with him. Show him that you are easy, fun, and light to be around. This guy might actually appreciate having flowers sent to him once you are his girlfriend.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: This man has Venus in Aries, so when he likes a girl, he is really awkward. Venus is in detriment in this sign. They really don’t exude the smooth charm easily associated with Venus. They tend to be straight-forward and assertive. Many times, he may come across cocky and rude. This will be unintentional. He’s innocent really. When they like someone, they express exactly what is on their mind. They tend to take up reckless dares to impress you. Yes, that’s right. Mars immediately comes with the territory because Aries is ruled by Mars. It’s hard enough for him to say the right thing to a woman. He may seem a little desperate because he seems to over-do everything. He really wants to impress a girl. He may get a little competitive with other suitors. Having Mars in Pisces saves him. When he wants to impress a girl, he gets really shy. He will do very quiet, romantic things. He may even sing her a song and show off his smooth voice. He will be there when you need him. He will try to play savior-or victim, if the moment allows. He will listen to all of your problems and be there for you when you need a shoulder to cry on. He will make many sacrifices for the girl he wants. This could make him seem like a doormat, but when wants someone, he becomes their love slave. (Just observe how he acted around f(x)’s Amber, and you get the picture). He will show you how kind, compassionate, and how open-minded he is.

Youngjae

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This guy wears confidence. He seems a bit shy. He’s a man of few words, but is really sweet. He is really thoughtful and seems to show a sincere interest in the girls he likes. He seems really easy-going and cool.

His statement: My ideal type is someone who I like. I only look at their heart. Someone who has a kind heart. Someone who has a lot of charm.

His Venus is in the proud sign of Leo, just like Mark. He looks at their “heart”. Ironically, Leo is ruled by the Sun, the planet that represents the figurative “heart”. Leo is a generous and kind sign. Despite the reputation Leos have for being self-centered and attention-starved, Leos are also gregarious and have BIG hearts. They are very giving. Leos can’t stand to see other people suffering, especially when they have the resources to help someone else. This guy is looking for that kindness in a woman. Leo is a warm and inviting sign, and he wants someone who is personable and treats others well. Of course, he also wants someone with a lot of charm. As I said before, Venus in Leo wants the best. They can be a bit demanding. He just doesn’t want someone who is simply charming, he wants an enormous amount of charm. This means she has to be extremely attractive. She has to be the one that gets all the attention, therefore she has to be the “queen” of everything. She has to be the prettiest, the most popular, the sweetest-she has to be ALL THAT. Leo is a charismatic sign, so this man is looking for a woman who has charisma. His Sun is in Virgo, just like Mark, therefore he needs her to be more humble and sweet rather than proud and boisterous. She needs to have a good work ethic.

His Moon is in Libra, just like Jackson. He needs someone who is a partner. He likes to do most things in pairs. He needs peace and serenity in his life. He needs balance, beauty, and order. This means he will only stay with a woman long-term if she has these qualities. He needs to socialize and have moments where life isn’t demanding. He would rather have a woman who handles even the most difficult situations with grace than a woman who handles situations aggressively. He may not be turned off by a woman who curses a lot, but he’ll certainly feel uneasy as it may be a sign she has a bad temper or will use sharp words against him when she’s angry. He is looking for someone who is supportive, and he will return the favor, as he is a man of equality. This man may believe in equal rights for women. BUT he won’t tolerate a woman that places strict rules on “man-hood” if you won’t hold yourself to strict rules of “woman-hood”. This means he is looking for someone who understands the opposite sex, someone who is thoughtful, and someone who is reasonable. His Venus is in Leo, so he is a romantic. His need for a partner is greater and he really requires a lot of attention from the woman he loves. He needs someone who views him as a King and appreciates him.

Hint: If you land a date with him, he likes a woman for looks over personality. He likes flashy clothing and accessories with a lot of gold. He will probably also like a woman with a voluminous head of hair, particularly in blonde. He is looking for a woman to be sweet, easy to get along with, and have a lot of friends. He just wants things to be harmonious and beautiful so any conflict will not go over well with him. Show him that you are easy, fun, and light to be around. This guy might actually appreciate having flowers sent to him once you are his girlfriend.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: With Venus in Leo, he is extravagant in his approach as it is. When he’s around a woman, he’s extremely generous, giving her lots of attention and buying many gifts for her, even bragging about her! He can’t disguise his pride, and is the ultimate flatterer. With his Mars in Leo, he is a natural show-off. He will do things to bring attention to himself. He wants to seem popular, wealthy, and amazing. He will try to get everyone around him to admire him and show off his “celebrity” status.

Bam Bam

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Young and cute, this young man is one of the maknaes (youngest) of the group. He exudes young charm. He’s one of the sweetest and takes care of his women. He cooks, he cleans, and he caters to those he loves. Despite his youthful energy, he is quite an accomplished young man. I did a detailed analysis of his chart as well. Click me to find out more.

His statement: I like girls who look pretty when they smile. Because I smile a lot and I have a personality that smiles a lot, I would like a girl who can smile with me.

His Venus is in it’s home: In the sign of Taurus. Venus is most comfortable in Taurus because Taurus is about pleasure, love, and relaxation. This man says he’s attracted to women who smile a lot. Venus in Taurus is a sign that likes ease and comfort. A woman who smiles a lot seems like a woman who promises ease and comfort. Basically, she seems easy to deal with. Venus in Taurus men hate pushy, demanding women. They are attracted to women who are earthy and easy-going. They are attracted to women who are good at pleasing the ones they love. He may be attracted to women who can cook. He can cook, so he’s not demanding something of women he can’t do himself. Someone who is patient is preferred. These men take their time committing to relationships, and they don’t want to move too fast. In fact, they hardly make a move at all. This is why they prefer women who are patient and approachable. The easier she is, the easier it will be for him to make a move. He needs to be softly urged. He likes women who are peaceful. He’s interested in women who are attractive, who appeal to his senses. Smelling good helps, such as wearing nice perfume or shampoo. Perhaps he even likes women who are more voluptuous than skinny. He is attracted to women who have a lot in common with him and share an interest with him. This ensures that you’ll get a long better, as there will be very few differences. He wants a woman he can relax with at the end of the day. He would rather cuddle at home with a girl than go out partying and socializing, so someone who is home-loving to some degree is preferred. Taurus is ruled by Venus, so the energy is strong here.

His Moon is in Pisces. He’s a sensitive soul. He needs someone in his life who is understanding and accepting. He doesn’t like the suffering in the world. He needs a woman who is as compassionate and sentimental as he is. Don’t ever call him weak for it. It will make him think twice about you. He needs his world quiet and isolated. This means he will attach to women who are quiet, gentle, and allow him some space. He’s not fond of keeping up with important dates or times all the time. It makes him nervous. He needs a woman who can “go-with-the-flow” and doesn’t make a big deal about little things that he fails to do. He is an artist, and music may be his life. It sustains his emotions. He needs a woman who appreciates and understands his art. Pisces can make people eccentric, so he really needs someone who connects with his soul. He needs a woman who almost feels as he feels. He needs a woman who can see beyond the physical. Material girls make him uneasy. A simple girl makes him feel secure. He will be most impressed by a woman who has the ability to understand people and life in a large way-almost psychic. She needs to have an open mind. Neptune, his generational planet, is in Capricorn. Even though keeping up with dates and times may make him nervous, he’s more than likely to do so anyway without pressure. He needs isolation more than usual. Jupiter is in Aquarius, so his eccentric traits will be more obvious, thus his need for an accepting woman will be greater.

Hint: If you land a date with him, he likes a woman with curves who dresses very femininely and wears perfume. A woman with a flowy hair style and who wears makeup (but not too much) appeals to him. He might admire a beautiful necklace. He is looking for a mysterious and shy woman. On her spare time she would be into the arts, dancing, music, photography, or something creative. He would definitely enjoy going to a concert or getting a mix CD from you.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: Because of his Venus in Taurus, he naturally is sweet when he likes a girl. He has this urge to touch a lot, so he may look for the right time to give hugs and such. He may shower the girl he likes with expensive gifts when given the chance. He will be a little jealous and possessive, wanting you all to himself. He will try to hide all of this to avoid coming across soft. What he will show most is his Mars. His Mars is in Virgo. When he wants to impress a girl, he tries to pay close attention to her. He will be looking for things you need. He will take it upon himself to perform all of the tedious tasks you may not want to perform, such as doing your chores for you or running errands for you. He will try to help the girl he likes in any way he can, even by giving unwanted advice. He might be a little critical and fussy, but this is because he’s concerned about you. It’s a sign he is interested. This guy may also try to impress you with his intelligent wit. He will be extra well-mannered, clean, and well-groomed.

Yugyeom

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He is the handsome maknae of the group. This young man exudes sex appeal, as well as good looks and charm! He’s cute, a little shy in romance, and also smooth. He’s one of my favorites.

His statement: I like 4D girls. I like girls who kind of stand there, staring off into space in their own little world with their lips kind of pouting. Just someone who has charm.

His Venus is in Capricorn. Even though many say that “4D” in Korea means to “think outside of the box” or “be a little quirky”, 4D (4-Dimensional) also means to be a fully well-developed character in contrast to a one-dimensional character. Similarly to JB, this man is attracted to experienced women. The more experiences a person has, the more development they have, thus, they become more mature. He doesn’t want someone who is simple-minded with an average life. He doesn’t want someone who lives like a child with no goals, no future, no career, no personality, or no life of her own. That is pretty one-dimensional. He wants a woman who has dabbled in everything, someone with independence, again, someone who has experienced a bit of everything. The trivial “I’m the girly type” or “I’m the sporty type” is juvenile. A truly experienced woman has many sides to her and sees the benefit to all kinds of traits. He is looking for a woman who has a lot more to her than a child. He wants a woman who is in their own world, possibly someone focused on their own life and ambition. He may be attracted to older women. These men tend to be attracted to women who show little to know interest in them. They are attracted to women who stay focused and try to remain impersonal. It’s a turn-off when women get too personal too fast. Having charm is key as Capricorn again wants someone they can respect. Charm is key for a good relationship status. They do see women as trophies and representatives of themselves. Unfortunately, his Saturn is falling in the sign of Aries, which serves as an uncomfortable position. His attraction to independent women is greater. He really wants a challenge more than the average Venus in Capricorn.

His Moon is in the flirty, airy sign of Gemini. This man is not extremely emotional, and he needs someone he can have fun with. He is honestly a changeable guy, changing in mood often. He needs someone who is adaptable. He needs someone he can joke with, and he needs someone he can communicate with. Communication is key. This means she has to “get” him. He needs a woman who will not box him in. He needs to try and experience many things. He needs a woman who supplies him the variety he craves. It would do a woman well to change things up every now and then, as he gets bored easily. He needs a woman who is interesting and entertaining. He needs to stay active, so that means he needs a woman who has a lot of energy. He may prefer someone younger. He needs someone who is not afraid to bring out their inner child. Mercury is sitting uncomfortably in Sagittarius. He may want a woman who shares his viewpoints on life, possibly someone who shares his beliefs. He is not as adaptable as he would normally be. He can be preachy.

Hint: If you happen to land a date with him, he likes dark haired women who dress business-like and in earthy colors. She will be sophisticated but understated in her style of dress. He is looking for a woman that intrigues him. Someone who he can have interesting conversations with and makes him laugh with her wit. He will probably like to be Facebook messaged and texted. For him it would be fun to go to a stand up comedy show.

How Do I Know He Likes Me?: His Mars is in Capricorn. This man will show he likes you by showing off his skills. Though typically, his reaction to love is to stay cool and serious because of his Venus in Capricorn, he will try to show you how mature and cool he is because of his Mars. He will act disinterested in you, but he may keep a small smile. He will show off his accomplishments and share his career with you. He will try to keep control of himself and show you how mature he can be. He’s thoughtful and serious about the one he wants. Mars is exalted in Capricorn.

To Learn More about Moon and Venus, click me!

I hope you all enjoyed this article and have learned a little more about Got7! Check out their music. It’s really good.

Mostly, I hope you IGot7 fans enjoyed this. Tell me, have your biases changed since you read their ideal types? Which ideal type seems to fit with your personality? Leave me a comment and let me know the details!

14 Ways Mattel Can Screw Up a Doll Line

22 Sep

Originally posted on Generation Next:

I have been a fan of Mattel products since I was a little girl. At the age of six, I enjoyed endless hours of “Barbie Time” on Saturday mornings when I didn’t have to go to school.  I have been a supporter of them for YEARS. Even as an adult, I still collect their products.

I have been a collector of the Barbie doll, Generation Girl Barbie, Diva Starz, Polly Pocket, What’s Her Face, Flavas, Myscene, American Girl/Girls of Many Lands, Monster High, and now Ever After High. I’ve always been swept up in Mattel’s products immediately. They always have captivating ideas to work with when they first release a doll line.

But while I am a fan of Mattel’s doll lines, I have slowly but surely become to be frustrated with the ACTUAL company. I am not a fan of Mattel. I love their ideas, but I hate their…

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Meet American Girl’s Beforever Characters Through Engaging Youtube Videos Inspired From Their Stories! #AGBeforeverVids

20 Sep

Originally posted on Generation Next:

*This article is to spread a campaign of sorts. I want more of the videos American Girl has posted on Youtube and better American Girl commercials. The videos they are missing are Rebecca and I also consider Caroline (Because I think her video was lacking). #AGBeforeverVids

Personally, I hated American Girl’s last couple of commercials for their historical line of dolls. However, one of Beforever’s ads was a step up. And yet, this isn’t the ad that’s appearing on t.v…

The commercials always seemed so “modernized”. My last favorite commercials were of the American Girl historical movies.

I know the goal of the commercials are to make the American Girls seem “easy” for modern girls to relate to, but sometimes it’s easier for girls today to relate to engaging and interesting ads, rather than cheesy ads that over-emphasize “girlhood”. Especially the girls of the “target age”. If we look at online…

View original 605 more words

14 Ways Mattel Can Screw Up a Doll Line

18 Sep

I have been a fan of Mattel products since I was a little girl. At the age of six, I enjoyed endless hours of “Barbie Time” on Saturday mornings when I didn’t have to go to school.  I have been a supporter of them for YEARS. Even as an adult, I still collect their products.

I have been a collector of the Barbie doll, Generation Girl Barbie, Diva Starz, Polly Pocket, What’s Her Face, Flavas, Myscene, American Girl/Girls of Many Lands, Monster High, and now Ever After High. I’ve always been swept up in Mattel’s products immediately. They always have captivating ideas to work with when they first release a doll line.

But while I am a fan of Mattel’s doll lines, I have slowly but surely become to be frustrated with the ACTUAL company. I am not a fan of Mattel. I love their ideas, but I hate their maintenance practices. I collect many other dolls, like Liv, Ever Girl, Lisa Frank, Magic Attic Club, Global Friends, etc. Though many of those dolls weren’t as commercially successful as Mattel’s dolls, their companies have been much more decent. Sure, many of their doll lines didn’t last, but many times they never came back making the same mistakes over and over…

I also collect Bratz. Bratz have something that the other doll lines don’t have. Not only has Bratz been a really cool idea, but MGA is a top-notch company that LISTENS to it’s fans and always seems to remember what makes their product as popular as it is. They are open to new ideas FROM FANS and they implement change without destroying the beauty of what they create.

I can’t say the same thing about Mattel. Despite the many cool ideas they come up with, in the long run, Mattel follows one similar pattern that ends up destroying many of the beautiful lines they make.

On a positive note, unlike other companies who fail and give up, I admire the fact that Mattel doesn’t give up after they fail. They may lose one doll line, sure, but they always come up with new lines, and just try it all over again. And I always get sucked up one more time.

But then, the results always turn out the same. Why? Well, while Mattel is always making superficial changes and inventing new ideas, they never really change the CORE issues before they move on to new lines. The core issues may never be present from the beginning, but oh boy, I always start to hear the same complaints from fans later down the line. Many of these fans are not usually familiar with Mattel’s tactics and don’t often recognize why things are going so sour. But people who have been fans of all of their doll lines always know what to expect from this company.

It’s even more evident when Mattel’s sales have dropped. They have these “fail-safe” tactics that they feel will get them quick money, even if the ideas end up destroying the line in the long run. I call this moment the “Panic Strategy”. They come in 14 different forms.

To me, they are 14 ways Mattel Can Screw up a perfect doll line.

1) Attack of the Pink

This is one of Mattel’s iconic “Panic Strategies”. Since their success of “pink” Barbie, they have deduced from Barbie’s “pink” success that girls must love pink an awful lot. It must be true for Mattel because all of their most successful dolls wear an awful lot of pink. The problem is that Mattel may see the success of ONE doll and apply that same color to the WHOLE LINE.

I’m not going to say that every doll who wears pink will sell, and this is where this strategy fails every time.

There is only so much pink a company can do before it gets redundant and sickening. Pastel Pink is a very frilly color that is hard to keep clean, so even though girls like it, it always ends up in the trash bin. The over-emphasized pink stamps out individuality and variety. It also sends out the message that everything “girl” should be one pretty color that identifies a gender, though we all know that “pink” began as a boy’s color…

I’m going to show you how often this happens using five examples: Diva Starz, Myscene, Monster High, American Girl,and the Barbie doll herself.

The Diva Starz line began as one of the first “diverse” lines that Mattel ever came out with. At the time when Diva Starz arrived on the scene, many companies wanted to make dolls that celebrated diversity instead of dolls that celebrated “white supremacy”. Mattel, unfortunately, had the reputation of highlighting blonde white dolls over ethnically diverse dolls. Diva Stars was their original plan to rid itself of that reputation. They were inspired from the Spice Girls, a very diverse pop music group.

Diva Starz began with each girl wearing their own unique color. The only girl who wore a whole lot of pink was Alexa. The other girls wore their own signature colors. Mattel usually starts off this way.

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Unfortunately, I suppose, the signature color thing “limits” the company’s creativity, so this ends up changing in the end all the time…

And what color did it change to? Well, the moment the Diva Starz’s sells started plummeting, what did they release? Another doll in pink! In fact, they translated pink to all their characters, no longer displaying the same diversity they began with! Instead of succeeding, however, it just made sales plummet faster until Diva Starz was a thing of the past. I am so happy that Diva Starz didn’t continue with Mattel because the pink would never end! I enjoy finding even more diverse clothes for them.

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Myscene was another doll line that followed Diva Starz in it’s tracks. Myscene began as a competitor to the popular Bratz dolls in 2002. Again, Mattel was still trying to remove their reputation of being a “white supremacy” doll company by creating another diverse line of dolls. This time, however, many little girls had stopped playing with dolls much sooner than generations before. Many little girls were more interested in pop singers. Barbie was getting too “babyish” with all of the pink. The Bratz related to modern girls. So, Mattel came with it’s “mature” doll line, Myscene. Myscene were prettier versions of the Bratz and more stylish versions of Barbie. They were very multi-faceted and not stereotypical at all. They had their own diverse personalities and interests. Their fashion styles had many urban details. They were meant to portray New York styles, which they did quite well. Even though they were still Barbies and Barbie was still the lead character, they almost didn’t feel or look like Barbies. Barbie didn’t wear pink. She wore many various colors, most of which were not pink.

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But then the lawsuits came from MGA. This put a damper on the doll line. Mattel was losing money from these court cases and sales began to plummet. What was Mattel’s solution? To replace Barbie with Kennedy. Now, they thought this was a good idea. Their logic was that Myscene was still too “connected with Barbie”, which they thought was the reason behind Myscene’s plummeting sales, so they decided to get rid of the lead character, Barbie. And who did they replace Barbie with? Someone who had a different name, but was MORE BARBIE-like than the original Barbie! Kennedy wore a heavy dosage of pink! Next thing we know, the Myscene line is re-vamped to include this heavy dosage of pink, destroying the mature and urban feeling of this line. They really missed the point entirely.

I know, she looks like Barbie

I know, she looks like Barbie

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Monster High is another good example. Monster High began as a freaky cool line. It took off unexpectedly a few years back. It began as a diverse ghoul line. What made this line so unique was that no one was human. This line didn’t have the same “cultural” problems the other lines had. No one was Caucasian, African American, Asian, Hispanic/Latino, Native American, or anything else. This line avoided the same cultural pitfalls many doll lines have. Each doll had their own signature colors. And the best part? The lead character, Frankie, did not wear PINK! It appealed to “darker” people, those attracted to “darker” themes. It was fitting for Halloween. Halloween colors don’t tend to be pink…

Frankie USED to be the main character. Now it appears the pink-fluff vampire character, Draculaura, is the main character. I mean, she was the lead in almost every movie. Frankie almost seems like an obsolete member. After the popularity of Draculaura, because suddenly everyone is obsessed with vampires, PINK became the new “it” color. And it seemed like every character that came after sported more and more pink.

Fairy-tale dolls, particularly Disney’s dolls, are heavily cutting into the Monster High market. With that, Mattel has once again used it’s tactic of Attack of the Pink.

While GiGi Grant’s sister looked more original and cool, she never got a doll. But here comes Miss Pink GiGi with her boring and unoriginal doll.

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Not that Monster High doesn’t have enough Were-Cats, but one of their additions to the line also sports pink.

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They even thought they could get away with making a serpent’s hair PINK! What snake in the world is pink?

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They have so many dolls sporting pink more than any other color, this line is hardly feeling like a “dark” and “edgy” ghoul line anymore. But what really makes the whole thing obvious is the complete change they made to characters that were never originally “pink”. One character: Howleen

Howleen’s original hair color was orange. She was meant to be original and spunky-not like the other girls. She had the edge that made her stand out. But no. They had to go and turn her into a less original character by changing her hair PINK! They took the original detail, the thing that made this doll stand out, and threw it away.

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It’s a bit sad. I really thought Monster High would be the line that would break the pink mold. I guess not, since apparently that’s all girls seem to like nowadays, according to Mattel’s demographic research.

American Girl has even jumped on the trend. American Girl is supposed to be a doll line focusing on bringing timeless stories about girls from the past to the future and relating it to girls of today. These stories are better highlighted with matching dolls. The doll line used to be filled with authentic and period-accurate clothing that could impress even the most skeptical historians, such as myself. It came in various colors and fabrics. It expressed the diversity of the characters, as well as educated children about fashion from the past. American Girl also consists of contemporary dolls that represent the girls of today. They also came with an array of clothing and accessories. Girl of the Year was once just as diverse as the historical line.

But suddenly, just recently, American Girl decided to dye everything in pink. From their most recent Girl of the Year, whose wardrobes are drenched in pink, to over half of their historical dolls, Pink seems to be the signature American Girl color. Even the packaging has been changed from red to PINK. Instead of hitting off the ground, it’s really hurting American Girl. There are so many colors in the rainbow. Many items in the past may have never been pink. And today, we have so many various colors in our stores! So why constantly shoot for pink? They even stuck Kit, a character who supposedly hates pink according to her story, in pink! Girl of the Year 2014 is model pink!

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Mattel will do anything to insert it’s pink paradise. Apparently, they think pink is the only way to make some money. While it may work at first, too much of this kills doll lines. Not everyone relates to the color pink, and no one wants to see everyone wear pink. When they all look alike, no characters stand out.

Finally, I want to talk about Barbie. Many of you probably didn’t know this, but Barbie wasn’t always a pink princess.

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Even Barbie had her moments where she suffered in the past. This is the reason Matt and El sold the company in the first place. Still, even after Barbie was sold, everything about her wasn’t pink. I had a Teacher Barbie that wore black.

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But the “new” Mattel had this “idea” that pink would sell better. Suddenly, Barbie was transformed out of nowhere into this pink icon. Now, all she wears is pink! And we hardly see any “teacher” Barbies anymore. She’s become this shallow pink princess with no career goals…

I think the Barbie doll has now become the reason many people hate pink.

2) Attack of the Blondes

Mattel is very famous for it’s worship of blondies. In fact, many of Mattel’s leading girls are blonde. From Diva Starz, to Myscene, to Polly Pocket, blondes make up Mattel’s universe. I will admit, blondes can be ticket-selling points. But of course, many times the reason the blonde characters sell so much is because of, not only hair, BUT what’s she’s usually wearing, which is something that is usually prettier than all the other dolls.

American Girl Kirsten didn’t sell as much as Samantha, even though she was blonde. Perhaps that’s just it. Mattel usually puts their blondes in all of the pretty girlish outfits and puts their other characters in drab fashions. They usually give their blonde characters unique hairstyles and all of their brunette characters the “normal” looks. Kirsten was the first blonde doll that didn’t look like that…Then again, she wasn’t originally designed by Mattel.

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Draculaura isn’t blonde and she sells well…so possibly, it’s not the blonde that does it. It’s the wardrobe you put with the doll. Mattel doesn’t always see it that way when tackling it’s “human”dolls.

In Mattel’s universe, blonde hair represents leadership, attention-seeking, fashion, fun, and beauty. The blonde characters always get the attractive qualities. These qualities are never awarded to the African American, Hispanic, or Asian characters. Sister was Mattel’s attempt at “segregating” the black dolls from the white dolls so that blonde Barbie won’t outshine “black” Barbie. They have put a stamp on their dolls because of this. We often find Mattel to have a hidden white superiority complex that is so deeply hidden it is difficult to prove.

Many times, Mattel tries to add some diversity, but in the end blondes always rule all. When all fails, we see the truest thoughts behind this company. When Mattel is struggling, you know what they usually pull out of their closet? Not a doll everyone has been asking for. No. They pull out a blonde. Usually, at this pivotal moment, when they pull out the blonde, they already have one successful blonde doll that’s not enough to fill the sale gaps, but is still selling better than the other dolls. So when they add the “new” blonde, they now have an over-abundance of blonde characters and a lack of one or more other ethnic groups/bruns/red heads.

I will share some examples…

American Girl used to be a doll line with many diverse characters. At one time, the historical line’s only blonde character was Kirsten. Then Kit came into the picture. Everything was in balance. But then came that moment where American Girl’s sales fell. Caroline was released.

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Girl of the Year has never had an African American character. Many hoped 2014 would be the year. And what did they give us? A blonde character.

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This is the exact same problem in Diva Starz. When Diva Starz’s sales were struggling, Mattel got rid of it’s sweet red-head, and replaced her with, you guessed it, another BLONDE character. Diva Starz then had TWO blonde characters, and two brunette characters, but no red-heads.

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It was the same with Myscene. When Myscene was on the brink of collapse, who did they release to replace Barbie? Another blonde!

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Ever After High has a really cool brunette character. But NOOO! She couldn’t be Snow White’s daughter (although Snow White has always been depicted as having dark hair). The “blonde” character has to get the shine as a “royal” character, as if all blondes are bubbly, shallow, and “royal”. In fact, why did they have to see Raven as a lead only if she shares the lead WITH the blonde? For once, couldn’t the blonde character have been in a supporting role? Like in Winx?

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One of the ideas that could solve this problem would be to do what they did to Draculaura and Samantha: Put the brunette and red-haired characters in more appealing fashions with more attractive personalities. Is that so difficult?

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3) Our Main Character is a Loser, so They’re FIRED

Mattel usually always tries to create a main character with the most attractive qualities and fashion. Usually, their main characters are blonde and/or wear an awful lot of pink. But this doesn’t necessarily make their main characters safe. If Mattel senses that their main characters are not doing a good job, they always seem to think the best idea is to “replace” them or kick them in a corner with very little attention. This usually works AGAINST them. A main character is usually the character the drives the whole line and/or story. Without those key characters, we are missing something, even if they aren’t popular.

Mattel’s strategy, however, is to often get rid of their “loser” main characters and let the popular character take over. Sometimes, a character never even gets a chance. Marie-Grace and Cecile are an example. They’ve only been out two years, and yet were retired, while many of the American Girl characters have been around for seven years or more! They never even got a chance! They were clumped together with the other “Best Friend” dolls,  when they had their own time, era, and complete line! Now, we no longer have dolls from NOLA that cover the Yellow Fever epidemic.

And Mattel is never fair about screen time or promotion. They jacked Josefina so horribly, I’m starting to think she’s falling into the “loser” category.

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Mattel is a company that seems to expect immediate results. If they don’t get it, it appears they get rid of characters and over-do the characters that have the potential for popularity.

This happened in Monster High. Draculaura has taken over every line, and the lead character and many other ghouls have been cast aside. Many of the other characters get ignored, even the actual MAIN character! Since when has Frankie been the main character in a movie? Lagoona and Spectra haven’t been in a line in a LOOOONG time.

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This really happened with the Barbie doll. Mattel has tried to make other diverse Barbies as main characters (like Sister), but it’s always clear that they want Barbie to lead. She is always the first doll to be introduced. She always has the most attractive outfits on. Come on. The other dolls didn’t stand a chance. Barbie’s popularity continues to grow, while all of the others fall behind.

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Do I have to re-iterate the fact that they replaced their cutting-edge Barbie in Myscene for the pink-princess doll Kennedy? It basically changed everything. Barbie was Madison’s best friend and River’s girlfriend. Did they really think they could just stick in Kennedy and everything would be okay? Fans hit the roof.

The problem with Mattel is they keep regurgitating dolls so often, they forget how many dolls they have. They end up ignoring the dolls they already have.

4) Attack of the Tacky

When Mattel is in “Panic mode”, they are usually at a point where they have run out of fashion ideas. Towards the end of a doll line, or when they are low on sales, Mattel gets really, REALLY tacky. They start just coming up with any random design ideas that can range between original and weird.

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What really makes it bad is that they start tacking on a heavy load of pastels, which often makes the outfits less refined.

I can honestly say that there was a huge difference between Myscene in the beginning and how they started looking when things got rough…

American Girl has also gotten tackier lately. American Girl used to have high-quality and valuable outfits, many that could be found on very few dolls in the world. But ever since their Beforever launch, an attempt to appeal more to this new generation, it seems that they have slapped fabrics together. Kit’s new birthday outfit is shameful enough, but they had to go and throw a girl from 1904 in some go-go boots!

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Even Monster High’s original outfits were much more stylish than many of the outfits now. Freaky Fusion is…a blend of awkward monsters thrown together, and it shows. Flavas was the epitome of tacky, but their last remaining outfits were the tackiest ever. And yes, Flavas was also Mattel’s attempt to make quick money at a time when Bratz was taken over the doll market. See how tacky Mattel gets when they are desperate? They translate all of this into style.

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5) Book and Blog Contradictions? Who Cares If they Don’t Add Up

American Girl, Monster High, and Generation Girl all had books to accompany their doll lines. I understand that, many times, the books are written by authors that have nothing to do with Mattel. But they are meant to be for Mattel’s products. Often times, I question whether Mattel really reads their own literature.

Often times, Mattel will release books, and then later release merch or promotion that contradicts it. Shouldn’t they at least read it over before releasing it? It might say something foul and they wouldn’t even know it! One thing is for certain, they do not live up to their stories-at all. This is really evident when they are low on money…Let me explain.

For instance, in the Monster High book series, Spectra and Invisi Billy were said to have been dating. But in the webisodes, here they come with Invisi Billy and Scarah! Say what now? After so many fans were drawn to the first couple, they pulled a switcheru on everybody. It’s almost as if Mattel didn’t care, as long as it could be a good selling point for the doll. They are often too focused on their actual products to notice such inconsistencies…But it’s sort of annoying. Don’t make books if you can’t keep up with them, jeez. As Spectra’s doll popularity decreased, and Scarah’s doll popularity increased, Spectra was simply the love interest that was replaced in the webisodes…Without any nod to the books…And thus, causing a fan war.

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Generation Girl dolls had a similar issue. Barbie Roberts was said to have come from Malibu, California in the books, Nichelle was from New York City, New York,  Tori was from Melbourne, Australia, and Ana was supposedly from Spanish Harlem, New York, right? But if you buy the boxes of these dolls, they all say completely different cities! Barbie is said to be from Los Angeles, Nichelle is from Harlem, Tori is from Sydney, and Ana is from Mexico City, Mexico! I know many of these cities are all in the same country, but it takes a bolt load of ignorance to think they are the same cities. It wouldn’t have been a problem had there not been confusion with accessories (especially food items meant to represent a particular city), or if the magazine articles the dolls came with didn’t emphasis a completely different place…Considering the books came out the exact time the dolls came out, that was a little awkward. That let the consumers know that it wasn’t just a change of plans down the line, it was an absolute glitch that no one paid attention to before release.

Generation Girl wiki <—Click Here

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Finally, I just want to use American Girl’s Kit. The girl is a tomboy and HATES the color pink. She HATES flounces. If you have read Meet Kit. So what does Mattel go and do? Stick her in a pink, flouncy dress for Easter. I understand that a Depression-era girl wouldn’t decide these things. But she has other clothes. Couldn’t they have highlighted the dresses Kit actually liked?  Just as they did with Felicity’s Dancing Lesson gown? Or with the red dress Ruthie got for Kit at Christmas? I think that’s pretty careless to create clothes that will bring discomfort to a character in the canon story…unless of course you’re like Mattel and DON’T CARE. They could’ve highlighted actual practical clothing an actual Depression-era girl would’ve worn.

They honestly release those books for extra revenue…But really, they should skip out on literature…

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You know what made it really obvious they don’t read their own literature? Conan O’Brian, host of the Conan O’Brian Show, visited American Girl Place in Los Angeles. He was talking to one of the employees there about Kit. Conan asked about her story. You know what story the employee told him about? The story from the Kit Kittredge: An American Girl movie. It became evident that he never read the books. He stated, “In Kit’s story, her father goes away to Chicago to find work.” That never happened in the CORE series! FACEPALM TIME! It’s odd for someone who supposedly knows about American Girl to mention the movie before the book series. Any fan knows that the Kit movie was NOTHING like the book series. In fact, Kit’s movie deviated the most from the main plot out of ALL of the movies! If fans know this, how much more-so should an employee? It was a shame to watch. I can’t even take that worker seriously as an employee. I couldn’t wrap my mind around it. This man has been working for American Girl all this time and doesn’t know the actual story behind Kit?

The plot is deviated the most when Mattel is losing money and fresh out of ideas. They have to swerve around the character traits to pull something new out of their hats.

I don’t even want to get started on Myscene. A long time ago, when Myscene was first released in 2002, it was announced on Barbie’s online “blog” that she was an Aries. The signature color for Aries is usually red. To represent her Zodiac sign, Barbie carried around a cherry-red cell phone and wore a matching cherry-red outfit, as seen at debut.

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Eventually, somehow, they switched Barbie into a Libra right under everyone’s noses. Hmm…And they offered no explanation for the cherry-red cell phone and matching outfit…

To this day, there are very few Myscene fans who know this information.

Oh well, I guess since no one questioned it, Mattel got away with it…as usual.

6) Retirement and Poor Replacements

This is a little different from #3. #3 wasn’t necessarily about retired dolls, just dolls that have been out-shined by other dolls. This point is literally about retirement. Mattel is ever infamous for it’s MAJOR retirements when things get a little rough. Many times, Mattel is about retiring an “unpopular” or “unsuccessful character” and replacing that character with someone “better”. But many times, Mattel goes through this period where they retire extremely popular characters and no one can usually understand why. Most assume it’s for the sake of making room and replacements.

I don’t honestly believe they are interested in “replacing” dolls. They just keep making what sells.

Sometimes, during those desperate times, Mattel takes the worse actions.

One example would be their retirement of Summer from the Diva Starz. When they got rid of her, most fans expected a pretty reasonable replacement, like maybe a new Asian doll or something. But we got ANOTHER blonde doll IN pink! They replaced their ONLY red-head with another blonde girl.

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Another major retirement fail was of their only Latina character, Ana, in Generation Girl. Why would they do something like that? No idea. And their replacement was a quirky Asian character and ANA’s boyfriend, Blaine…What’s the point of retiring the doll and then releasing her boyfriend?

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And again, in Myscene. They retired the cutting-edge Barbie, for a pink-princess Barbie doll look-alike named “Kennedy”. Wow. So they thought since the name was changed, she would be less “Barbie”? But then you go and make her just like the iconic Barbie…FAILURE.

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Mattel retired it’s best-selling American Girl doll, Samantha! Why? I don’t know. They said they were making room for new characters. But it wasn’t really business savvy, though most were happy they were making room for new characters…The replacement was not enough to bring the money back…

7) Inaccuracy: Wait, the Story is a little off…

This mostly applies to their doll lines that are based off of something like Ever After High, Monster High, and American Girl. Mattel will squeeze anything to make a buck, and sometimes many things they throw together never add up. They make it really hard to be a detail-oriented person and enjoy all of Mattel’s products. Well, at least they tend to doll details…Well, at least when they first release a doll line.

Inaccuracy is usually a major sign that Mattel is struggling, and this is how they ruin doll lines in the end.

American Girl’s Beforever is steeped with inaccurate products, which is a shame. The line is meant to inspire girls of today to learn history through a collection of dolls. But many times, they squeeze some modern items in there to sell the doll. For instance, Samantha’s sporting purple “go-go” boots lately. Even the fact that she still has those bangs across her forehead proves how inaccurate the line can get…No one in 1904 wore bangs. They even managed to throw in a flower headband…

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Ever After High has been slapped with the inaccurate bill, too. While Apple White is supposed to be Snow White’s daughter, and follow the “Snow White” tradition precisely, that’s not technically possible for her. Therefore, she is a rebel without even trying. 1) Snow White has ALWAYS been described to have hair as “black as ebony” since the original German story was published by the Grimm Brothers. But we talked about how Mattel worships blondes…2) The “evil queen” was born WAY before Snow White, and supposedly MARRIED Snow White’s FATHER. So, is Raven Queen going to be Apple White’s new Step-mother? Not possible, because apparently Apple White’s parents are Snow White and her handsome prince…Unless Snow White dies, and Raven Queen ends up marrying Apple White’s older father, I doubt this could work smoothly. In other words, Apple White is still NOT a royal. She is actually, in fact, a rebel by default, as there is no possible way she can follow her “destiny”, even if Raven Queen WERE to turn out evil. The inaccuracy of the story makes it all a bit amusing, but since it’s so easy for children (and some adults) to overlook such details, you’d all be happy to know that, at least, the dolls are very detailed and beautiful. After all, the story was squeezed a bit to allow a perky blonde to take the lead, and to play on the “victim” heart strings people are pulling with today’s iconic villains.

In the end, however, I can see Ever After High’s story being a big confusing mess. Just buy the doll.

I have one more question. If Raven Queen is supposed to be the “evil queen”, why didn’t SHE inherit the magic mirror instead of Apple White? Raven Queen acts more like Snow White than Apple White…*gasp* Apple White is vain…easily jealous…controlling…acts like a queen…and owns a magic mirror…Perhaps, SHE’LL be the next evil queen! *gasp* There are still many inconsistencies. Her story seems to even deviate greatly from the original Evil Queen’s story, too.

Raven Queen was supposedly born to the Evil Queen, but didn’t the Evil Queen DIE at the end of Snow White? So, how was Raven Queen born really? And IF Raven Queen was born before the Evil Queen died, wouldn’t that mean she was born around the time Snow White was an infant? I doubt she was born around the time the Evil Queen was tracking Snow White down out of jealousy. And wouldn’t that make Raven Queen Snow White’s sister? Wouldn’t that make Raven Queen…Apple White’s aunt? In this case, Raven Queen should be older than Apple White.

Don’t think too deep. It’ll ruin everything. Just stay in ignorant bliss so you can enjoy life. Just buy the doll…That’s all Mattel cares about anyway. They will squeeze any attractive story just to sell.

The Story of Snow White<—Click

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One last question: Why was the My Scene movie called Myscene Goes Hollywood, when the whole movie takes place in New York? Deceptive…

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8) Failing Up-Grades

When Mattel is in a pinch, their first instinct is to “upgrade” their lines. Every company does an up-grade. But it seems like Mattel always comes up with the most slap-dash ideas when they are financially in trouble. Their desperation always shows.

American Girl’s Beforever is a prime example. I don’t even know where to begin. They gave their 9 year-old 1970’s doll some platform shoes, their 1904 doll some go-go boots and a headband, and modernized all of their historical fashion…

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Another example would be when Mattel decided to make the Diva Starz “taller”. I don’t know why they thought it was a good idea. It just made them awkward and hard to carry around. Instead of getting them more money, it became the end of the entire Diva Starz line.

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And remember when they made the My Scene dolls SMILE? Those dolls were the worst ideas ever.

Almost looks like a regular Barbie doesn't it? Why was this a good idea?

Almost looks like a regular Barbie doesn’t it? Why was this a good idea?

For Mattel, desperate times call for desperate up-grades.

9) Flunk the Boys

Boys are a small accessory to girls in the Mattel universe. Of course, the target for most of Mattel’s products are young females. In Mattel’s company mind, this means giving a guy some attention as a love interest until his popularity dwindles. Their next step is to retire him, like all of the other “accessories”. Possibly, they may even try to replace him. Men are thrown around in the Mattel universe and treated poorly.

The Ken doll is a great example of this. He was Barbie’s “boyfriend” since the 1960’s. He has had a fantastic line of clothing and accessories. Then, they suddenly tried to retire him in 2004, stating that he and Barbie needed to “spend some time apart”. That was a very bad idea. You know they had to bring him back. Ken never even had a Doll of the World yet! Throughout the years, he was always placed behind Barbie’s world of plastic. His retirement was an all-time low.

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It has become the same song and dance with Monster High. The boys are given one outfit a piece, with very few details or accessories, and often seem to wear the exact same outfits as one another with very few distinctions. This gives very shallow ideas to girls, and gives their competition, the Bratz, the upper hand.

Just look at Heath. He literally was only an accessory to Abbey. The boys in Mattel’s universe eventually end up in sets with the girls.

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Look at Abbey’s accessories…Wait…where are Heath’s accessories? WOW. He doesn’t really have any but a mitt, does he? -.- They are supposed to “share”.

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Heck, by the end of My Scene, the five boys had been reduced down to one: River, Barbie’s “boyfriend”…er, was it Kennedy by then? Who knows…

It’s really no wonder Mattel has a hard time relating to a male audience with their lines. Being targeted for girls is no excuse. Bratz Boyz can do it better:

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Two outfits, tons of accessories, a comb, a nice braided hairstyle, two pairs of shoes, and their OWN LINES, separate from the girls, like 1st edition Boyz…

10) The Red-Headed Curse

Mattel’s world is blonde. It’s natural opposite is “Red Hair” in Mattel’s Kingdom. I’m not going to go as far as to say they have a personal prejudice against red-heads, as they always make dolls with Red hair. BUT when the going gets tough, it’s always a red-head that is on the chopping block.

American Girl has been around for years. Out of all of American Girl’s dolls, only ONE doll has been retired TWICE: Felicity Merriman, their Revolutionary War doll. She has a spunky personality that girls of today appreciate, but she has the hair color that Mattel deems as “hard to sell” for some reason. Though red hair never stopped the sell of Blossom from the Powerpuff Girls or Bloom from Winx, it seems to be the “sign” of poor sells for Mattel…

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In Diva Starz, Summer was the only doll retired during the line’s run. The sweet red-head was then replaced with a cutting-edge blonde…Which didn’t appease anyone. Shortly after, the line was retired altogether.

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Generation Girl also retired their red-haired doll, Chelsie Peterson. They claimed she “moved”. People were so mad. I mean, she was the most interesting doll in the line. Plus, she was the only doll from England. She was also a singer who came with a guitar. There were so many parts of her still left untouched.

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Myscene’s Kenzie was a disappointment. She lasted shorter than any Myscene doll ever sold. They hardly elaborated on her background. And she was a beautiful doll.

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As you can see, Mattel has a record. They have never been very nice to their red-haired girls. Many of their lines, like Flavas, didn’t have red-heads at all! Talk about a lack of diversity…

Monster High and Ever After High hardly process red-head characters…

Mattel acts like having red hair is a curse or something…When is the last time they created a red-head for their main Barbie line? I can’t remember.

11) Everybody Sings and Dances

Yea, just about any company uses the “arts” gimmick to get little girls to buy their dolls. Every doll line needs a “singing” and/or “dancing” line where the doll can get fancied up in glitter and pastels and shimmy on a stage.

For Mattel, however, this is one of their “Panic Strategies”. Mattel may already have a singer and dancer, but when they are low on funds or ideas, no worries. They will release ANOTHER singer and dancer.

For instance, Monster High already had Operetta as a singer. But that wasn’t enough. They just had to make one of their popular warecats and their new witch doll, Casta Fierce, as singers as well! Why does this line need three singers? I don’t know. Couldn’t they have other more original interests? Oh wait, this is Mattel we are talking about…

Double whamy: Pink and a Singer!

Double whamy: Pink and a Singer!

American Girl’s Girl of the Year already had a very popular modern-day dancer named Marisol. There were so many modern ideas they could cover. But no. In 2014, they released ANOTHER dancer: Isabelle. I’m still shocked they didn’t try the singer thing…I suppose it’s not as good for the movies…It was good enough for the Saige movie…Even though Saige ISN’T a singer…

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Barbie does the singing thing every new decade. She has done every occupation really. But I guarantee you, she’s done teaching much less than singing or dancing.

Polly Pocket, Flavas, I mean really. Singing and Dancing is apart of Mattel’s universe as a doll line. It’s their greatest green ticket. And especially when funds are low. So, don’t expect anything original.

12) We’ll Never Be Rebels

Mattel is capable of coming up with some pretty rebellious ideas, but Mattel likes to play it safe. While parents may approve, this doesn’t make them necessarily popular among the kids. Parents don’t play with these dolls, but the kids do. Many collectors appreciate detailed dolls. Many times, Mattel will give up good, detailed, and quality dolls for dolls that are cheap and wholesome.

Chelsie Peterson, Tori burns, and Barbie Roberts from Generation Girl used to get a lot of bashing from soccer moms. Chelsie had a nose ring and three piercings in her left ear, Tori did too, and Barbie had a tattoo on her ankle (I’m one of the lucky few to get this one). At the time, that was a “big deal”. They were details that made those dolls unique and appealing. Well, Mattel is such a suck-up, they got rid of those unique details. Now, it’s no longer a big deal. But where is Generation Girl? A thing of the past. They didn’t even realize they were creating a doll trend at the time.

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Notice her heart tattoo on her ankle...

Notice her heart tattoo on her ankle…

Monster High got a lot of stigma for releasing a “spider doll”. Instead of ignoring people by trying to make the doll more appealing, she has only appeared in one line. Spiders may look scary, but at least they are a real part of nature. Oh, but vampires and zombies are okay, huh… -.-

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American Girl has gone light on the stories behind their Girl of the Year dolls. The last deep story they ever had for modern girls was Chrissa’s story on bullying. The other stories hardly touch on subjects that affect girls. They gloss over a few issues to help sell pretty merchandise. They have the potential to open the minds of girls. Instead, they would rather play it safe and give girls more materialistic values.

Flavas was also a pretty edgy line, but I think a lot more had to do with their retirement…

13) Cheap Quality

Mattel always releases their dolls with the highest quality-in the beginning, during a launch. But after a while, Mattel gets comfortable. When things get rough, the quality declines. This happens with every company, but a smart company knows how to wheel around this issue. Many times, Mattel cheapens the quality because it’s cheaper to make. This keeps money in their pockets.

American Girl’s quality has decreased tremendously, and yet the prices have risen! They certainly don’t use the same fine materials, like real wood, real clothing fabric, and tin, like they used to. Everything is plastic-and yet, more expensive than when they used real materials!

Barbie used to be a high-quality doll herself in the 1960’s. Then they started creating her with that cheap hair and face paint. When I was little, I could never pretend she was swimming. Her hair and lipstick would fade!

Yea, her hair seems nicer in the picture, but the actual doll is not the same!

Yea, her hair seems nicer in the picture, but the actual doll is not the same!

14) Mattel Doesn’t Listen to YOU

You would think that when Mattel is on it’s butt they would listen to fans more. Nope. In fact, the further Mattel is in a slump, the more they ignore fans. Does this sound familiar?

“We do not accept new product ideas.” That’s one of them. “We apologize for your dissatisfaction with our products. We have ___ for you to enjoy. Stay tuned for more updates”.

Mattel is usually at it’s best when it has competition. When they have competition, they suddenly come up with better quality ideas. Bratz kept Mattel on it’s toes. Myscene, Monster high, and Girls of Many Lands all came out around the time Bratz was at it’s height. Those three lines were of high quality at launch. But now that the competition is low, Mattel is getting a little too comfortable. Competition helps Mattel recognize it’s flaws and weaknesses. Without competition, they don’t see fans going anywhere else, no matter how messed up their tactics are.

No matter how many fans complain about the same things, Mattel continues to send “automated” emails and continues to reject new ideas. Their competitors, MGA, are VERY open to new ideas. This contributed to the success of Bratz and the reason Mattel always struggled all of those years. They still don’t understand what tweens want. They want to be HEARD. Since Mattel usually misses this point miserably, they always lose valuable ideas to their competition.

So, now that you are aware of the Mattel pattern, fans shouldn’t be surprised when they see Mattel leaning on an idea that seems to be choking the life out of a doll line. They have a strange tendency of repeating patterns.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you people think! What Mattel dolls do you collect? What products have you purchased? Have you experienced what I have or do you think I’m a load of malarkey?

Meet American Girl’s Beforever Characters Through Engaging Youtube Videos Inspired From Their Stories! #AGBeforeverVids

16 Sep

*This article is to spread a campaign of sorts. I want more of the videos American Girl has posted on Youtube and better American Girl commercials. The videos they are missing are Rebecca and I also consider Caroline (Because I think her video was lacking). #AGBeforeverVids

Personally, I hated American Girl’s last couple of commercials for their historical line of dolls. However, one of Beforever’s ads was a step up. And yet, this isn’t the ad that’s appearing on t.v…

The commercials always seemed so “modernized”. My last favorite commercials were of the American Girl historical movies.

(The one below is not the actual trailer, but it has some clips from the original trailer)

I know the goal of the commercials are to make the American Girls seem “easy” for modern girls to relate to, but sometimes it’s easier for girls today to relate to engaging and interesting ads, rather than cheesy ads that over-emphasize “girlhood”. Especially the girls of the “target age”. If we look at online ads/trailers/commercials, like the Hunger Games trailer or the Maze Runner, big kids are usually drawn in by the dozens to those dramatic teasers. I understand people want to encourage little kids to stay kids. But the American Girls can provide a realistic view of life, while still appealing to sophisticated girls of today. American Girl admits that girls are more sophisticated today, which is why they consolidated their books to “feel” more like volumes. So why can’t they provide advertisements that appeal to sophisticated children?

Caroline’s commercial was an example of what I mean by just plain yuck. While I thought it was cute to have the girls play with Caroline during the entire ad, and cute when they threw in some rowboat scenes, the music threw off the appeal. They could’ve at least had some adventurous music. They could’ve given some more appealing insight into her story. They could have given it an artistic feeling. The ad felt very “thrown together”. They put some girls in a room with a doll, those girls played a bit with the doll, and then they added some cheesy modern music. I liked the McDonalds commercial from several years ago better than Caroline’s commercial! They could’ve made an interesting background scene. Other doll brands, like Ever After High and Monster High, have very innovative commercials. But no. This commercial didn’t tell me anything about Caroline or her time. It didn’t make Caroline seem like an interesting doll from all of their other dolls. I saw her accessories. I saw her outfits. But I didn’t seen any creativity-I didn’t see any imagination!

Look at THIS McDonalds commercial in comparison:

But American Girl has posted some interesting videos that are far more superior than any trailers above. On Youtube.com, on American Girl’s official channel, they have saved their beautiful historical videos for others to watch. Unlike everything above, these videos are interesting and inspirational. They are like mini-documentaries or audiobooks. They give the gist of the story with engaging historical footage and thrilling background music. They are a bit lengthy. I know a commercial can’t be as long as the videos they posted (you’ll understand when you watch), BUT I think that a commercial can utilize some backgrounds from the stories to create a scene for the dolls.

A good commercial needs a good scene for the dolls. Let’s take the Monster High Freaky Fusion commercial for example (Not to go off-topic, just giving an example of what I mean).

Like the commercial above, the advertisement places the dolls in a fitting scene. The music is also fitting for the dolls. This makes the dolls seem like they live in an interesting world. This sparks interest from it’s viewers.

The videos that were posted on Youtube made me so much more interested in American Girl dolls, I want to share them. I’m so sorry that Rebecca doesn’t have one and that Caroline doesn’t have one in this style. These videos also sort of make up for the lack of historical movies. I love them. But maybe kids don’t like them. All the kids I showed them to loved them! Let me know what you people think. Check them out:

Unfortunately, these videos use a lot of the illustrations that used to be in the book series, and since the Beforever books are picture-less, who knows if there will be any videos in the future. But I will be pushing for it.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of the vids!

If you like them, and would like Rebecca and Caroline to have similar vids, #AGBeforeverVids.

 

BoA’s Japanese Comeback 2014: BoA “Double” Challenge

12 Sep

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In case you couldn’t tell, this month is BoA month in honor of BoA’s first Japanese comeback in FOUR years! So, this article is to spread the word!

Her album was released September 3, 2014 titled, Who’s Back?.

Own it, it’s awesome!

For today, I have a challenge for BoA fans and readers.

BoA has debuted in THREE countries: Korea (2000), Japan (2001), and the USA (2008). She has around 94 music videos and still counting!

Between her Korean music videos and her Japanese videos, BoA has brought over some of her Korean stuff into the Japanese nation. Many times, she has done music videos TWICE for both countries. She translated many of her Korean songs in Japanese.

She did the same thing in America (She translated Girls on Top, her Korean hit, in English).

The music videos between Korea and Japan may look like identical twins, but just like identical twins, there are differences.

The inspiration behind the title comes from a BoA song called “Double”. In the video, she has two mirror versions of herself as she dances.

My challenge for you readers: Can you find the differences?

Ready? Begin!

BoA Double

First, we’ll start with the inspiration behind the title: “Double”. Released in 2003.

Korean Mv

AND

Japanese Pv

I notice there are a lot of differences in editing. Can you spot any differences?

The Shadow

Next, we’ll do The Shadow. Shadow always reminds me of “Double”. BoA has three versions of herself that meet each other at one point. There is an emphasis of BoA mirroring herself, much like in “Double”. Released in 2012.

Korean MV

or

Japanese PV

http://www.jpopsuki.tv/video/BoA—The-Shadow-%2528Japanese-Version%2529/e88dc86aa9b209013b0bf12b81b5bf13 <—-Click

Can you spot the differences? Japan has a dreamier feeling, while I feel Korea’s shows BoA’s tougher and sexier side.

BoA Shine We Are

Released in 2003.

It’s even harder to find the differences in these music videos. But they exist! Can you find them?

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Pv

Rock With You

Released in 2004.

These are VERY identical. Can you spot the differences? I did! There are very few, but they exist.

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Pv

Valenti

Released in 2002.

The differences become very obvious here. Can you spot them?

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Pv

Jewel Song

Released in 2003.

Something this beautiful can hide hidden surprises, including differences. Can you find them?

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Pv

Destiny (Miracle)/Kiseki

Released in 2002.

So many lovely scenes. BoA wears the same outfits, and sings the songs pretty similar, but there are still differences. Can you find them?

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Pv

Meri Churi

Released in 2004.

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Pv

http://serviceapi.nmv.naver.com/flash/convertIframeTag.nhn?vid=347039E7C5A88762B06C6F850D20745D59CD&outKey=V125b85e0bd7ecd99f54e4d2849af75299176e91baa587952a2494d2849af75299176&width=720&height=438

Everlasting

Released in 2006.

You never notice certain things in a music video until you see it’s twin! What differences can you spot?

Korean Mv

or

Japanese Mv

I hope you enjoyed the BoA “Double” challenge! It was a lot of fun for me!

Leave me a comment and let me know one difference you found in at least one music video!

And don’t forget to get BoA’s album on sale now!

http://www.yesasia.com

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