Among the other civilization-ending fears about the lady Ghostbusters film was that the unsold toys from Mattel would cause an overspill at landfills around the globe, leading to poisoned water and worldwide starvation. Luckily that didn’t happen! Although before the film opened there were reports that Target had already put the toys on markdown, Mattel says sales “exceeded expectations”, which to be fair, could mean they didn’t expect to sell any. A spokesperson says they are “thrilled with the response.”

Mattel is reporting strong early sales for its line of toys based on the female-led “Ghostbusters” — from both boys and girls.

In keeping with the tagline “Everybody wants to be a Ghostbuster,” Mattel’s retail strategy was to sell the female-led Ghostbusters action figures in the boys’ toy aisle. The sales figures at the top retailers in the country have exceeded expectations, the toymaker reported Friday.

I don’t suppose there are any toy sales charts, so this will remain anecdotal for now. Breaking down the idea that female action figures won’t sell (the Gamora Doctrine) is the last bastion of a male-centric nerd world. It’s persistent, but with so much outcry about it, the idea does seem to be breaking down a bit, and with Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel coming out, we’ll see just how far the doctrine can be pushed.

Speaking of Ghostbusters, I expected to see a gajillion Dr. Jillian Holtzmanns at SDCC but never saw any although according to Twitter there were several:

Several people told me there was less cosplay at the con, and while I think that’s mostly attributable to the demographics of this year’s show which I’ll address in my longer piece (Monday folks, sorry) perhaps the long lead time and determination necessary to attend meant that people already had their costumes planned. I did see several Pokéstops, though, so some were updated.

I suspect we’ll see if Jillian has legs at NYCC in 68 short days.


  1. don’t know about dc or ghostbuster characters (i would guess that harley quinn figures sell very well, considering what a popular character she is), but over at the marvel end of the toy aisle, the female figures are always the first to fly off the shelves, even gamora and black widow. tho’ i admit marvel female figures usually have less than the male figures to a case, the female figures are the figures that are more sought after, making them sometimes pretty hard to find till the market is flooded with the particular line that the female characters appear in, everyone manages to get their fill, and the figures become peg warmers like the rest of the figures of that line.

  2. The Jillian Holtzmann figure is surprisingly hard to find and the online prices reflect that. Odd that many toy reviewers are choosing to focus on a negative “feminist” slant though. Let’s see the same outcry when the remake of Splash hits theaters with Channing Tatum as the “mermaid.”

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