Everyone is teaming up for DC Super Hero Girls, the multi-company, multi-platform push for girls’ versions of DC’s lady characters. Target will have an exclusive line of apparel and toys; Boomerang will air a 44-minute special and the digital shorts. The line also claims some firsts: “the first-ever 6-inch action figure designed for girls; first 12-inch collection of action dolls featuring strong, athletic bodies that stand on their own in heroic poses; and first-ever action role-play toys for girls.”
Toys that stand on their own — kinda a nice metaphor there.
The Target line launches in March with a global roll out in July.
As I’ve noted before DC Super Hero Girls seems to be mostly a way to expand the immensely popular world of superheroes into Mattel’s doll/action figure business. And Mattel definitely needs a boost. It’s also a way for Diane Nelson to showcase her new role as head of WB Consumer Products. There’s more in this LA Times piece:
Nelson, who also runs Warner Bros.’s consumer products business, has overseen major licensing brands such as Harry Potter and The Hobbit. She says young girls have been mostly excluded from the superhero action. American consumers spent $7.4 billion on girls’ toys last year for kids aged six to 12, according to research firm NPD Group, and a third of those sales were dolls.
“I think this is one of the most important things that DC will do,” said Geoff Johns, DC’s chief creative officer. “It’s changing the culture of what superheroes are.”
The attempt to transfer superhero to the toy line took a few tries:
Executives took pains to ensure they remained true the graphic novels, eschewing the pinks, teals and pastel hues typical of most girls toys. Cumbersome dresses were out. A pink jumpsuit in an early version of Catwoman didn’t pass muster. Neither did a necklace for Wonder Woman or high heels for Poison Ivy, said Tanya Missad, director of consumer insights for Mattel.
“She has to look strong and cute,” Missad said. “But first and foremost she has to be a superhero.”
And here’s the PR:
Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP) and DC Entertainment (DCE), in partnership with Mattel, announced an exclusive partnership with Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) to offer a first-look at the DC Super Hero Girls merchandise collection, featuring a special assortment of merchandise across multiple categories, including toys and dress up, apparel and accessories, publishing and more, to be sold exclusively at Target, beginning in March 2016. DC Super Hero Girls harnesses the power of the world’s most iconic female characters from DC Comics, including Wonder Woman, Supergirl, and Batgirl, as they learn to hone their super powers in a high school setting and gives young fans the chance to play, watch, read and be inspired to discover their full super power potential.
Boomerang, a division of Turner, will also be the exclusive broadcast partner for DC Super Hero Girls, with Boomerang as the official broadcaster to bring the first animated television special and the series of animated digital shorts to viewers. From award-winning Warner Bros. Animation in partnership with Mattel’s Playground Productions, the first 44-minute television special is slated to premiere this Spring. The DC Super Hero Girls digital animated shorts will also be featured on Cartoon Network’s CN App, giving fans the opportunity to explore the DC Super Hero Girls universe and get to know the Super Heroes. Additionally, the first of a series of DC Super Hero Girls made-for-videos is scheduled for release later this year, from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
“It’s time for girls to get their capes on and envision themselves as strong, powerful and connected beings at the center of their own superhero story, and DC Super Hero Girls provides a brand-new, robust universe to do just that,” said Diane Nelson, President of DC Entertainment, President of Warner Bros. Consumer Products and President & Chief Content Officer of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “The toys, dolls, action figures and books that are rolling out at Target this spring, combined with the fun animated series currently online, feature stories of empowerment, inspiration and optimism that are relatable to girls. This program is changing the face of superhero culture, and we are really proud of that.”
“Target prides itself on keeping a pulse on pop culture, and we have a legacy of getting behind the hottest franchises to bring our guests exclusive merchandise from their favorite movies, television shows and characters,” said Scott Nygaard, senior vice president of merchandising, Target. “We are thrilled to be working with some of the industry’s leading partners to introduce a new generation to these inspirational characters, and know fans of all ages will embrace these beloved and iconic heroines as they build new memories.”
DC Super Hero Girls merchandise will fly onto shelves nationwide, exclusively at Target, beginning in March 2016. Featured products from the new line include: toys, dress up, apparel, accessories, publishing and more. Master toy partner Mattel unveils its new DC Super Hero Girls collection, featuring the industry-firsts: the first-ever 6-inch action figure designed for girls; first 12-inch collection of action dolls featuring strong, athletic bodies that stand on their own in heroic poses; and first-ever action role-play toys for girls.
The DC Super Hero Girls global merchandise program will hit retail worldwide, beginning in July 2016, offering a wide range of product to fans around the world.
Additionally, WBCP, DCE and Mattel will be launching a DC Super Hero Girls App in March, allowing fans the opportunity to watch the animated shorts, play games, interact and connect with the DC Super Hero Girls world – taking the DC Super Hero Girls whenever and wherever they go.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.