2011 Sets: Male-to-Female Minifig Ratio

I thought the analysis of male-female figs by “J” in the 2011 sets was too good to ignore. (Thanks J!)  The discussion arose from the earlier post on LEGO’s intent to target girls…  So here is J’s comment in its entirety:

I did a count of male and female mini-figures by theme in the 2011 releases for which we have visual evidence. The modular house line always tends to be more balanced so there’s still potential there but the City theme is particularly bad this year. Here’s the results (aliens/creatures are excluded except where male-female differentiation exists:

Alien Abduction: 9 male, 1 female
Atlantis: 7 male, 1 female
Castle: 15 male, 1 female
City: 59 male, 5 female
Collectible Mini-Figures: 37 male, 10 female (omit 1 alien)
Creator: 2 male, 0 female
Dacta: 33 male, 19 female
Duplo: 16 male, 4 female
Harry Potter: 20 male, 3 female
Ninjago: 30 male, 3 female
Pharaoh’s Quest: 9 male, 1 female
Pirates of the Caribbean: 32 male, 4 female
Star Wars: 43 male, 7 female
Trains: 3 male, 0 female

TOTAL SYSTEM: 299 male, 55 female
TOTAL DUPLO: 16 male, 4 female
TOTAL: 315 male, 59 female

That’s greater than a 5:1 ratio and if you remove the Dacta and Collectible Mini-figure sets from the equation, you get a pathetic 8:1 ratio (245 male, 30 female). I’ll say it again. If Lego wants girls to take interest in their products, they should make a better effort to include figures through which girls can identify.

Obviously being an AFFOL, I would like TLG to pay more attention to the largely ignored segment of girls/ladies.

J’s analysis also brought to mind some articles discussing LEGO and girls in Eurobricks that I managed to find in case you would like to read some thoughts of other AFOLs:

And my fav thread of the lot, a painstakingly compiled list of female minifigs by Sandy:

And I leave you with a really old ad I came across some time back (rem I was thinking to do a series of features on LEGO ads that I never completed?).  Anyway…

Ad scanned by  Moose Greebles

3 Responses to 2011 Sets: Male-to-Female Minifig Ratio

  1. Love J’s post! Very interesting! Also the links you have included from Eurobricks have some really eye-opening discussion! Love this whole discussion! Go girls! And the little redhead is SOOOO precious! 😀

  2. walsh klien says:

    Thanks for sharing. I agree that Lego has very few female minifigs. AFFOL aside, I personally liked the female minifigs in fact I collect them as well because I find them more intricate and nicer in design than the male ones =P

  3. J says:

    As a male, I was hardly lacking in gender recognition in mini-figures growing up. For me, the issue was always glasses (which I’ve worn for a long time). Of course, growing up, they didn’t have elaborate prints on the mini-figures. There was only the standard smiley, nothing else, so I didn’t think too much about it. For me the issue was creating a town layout that had some balance. To differentiate between male and female, one needed to look at the hair. What bothered me then was the scarcity of female hairpieces. I had about 100 figures as a child and only 5 of them were female.

    As an adult collector, I still like to see a balance in the displays I arrange. Despite the wider array of prints available and the newer hairpieces for diversity, there is still a vast disparity between male and female representations. I have well over 5000 mini-figures and probably no more than a couple hundred of them are female. That’s frustrating when trying to create a display that looks good with a realistic balance of male and female figures.

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