Why Is The New Star Wars Heroine Left Out Of This Toy Set?

Update: A representative for Target responded to our request for comment saying: "We know fans may be disappointed that Rey is not included in this Target-exclusive 6-pack, and have shared this feedback with our merchandising team and vendor partners." The rep also added that other Rey merchandise is available, and hinted, "Fans will be seeing even more of her after the film opens."
This story was originally published on November 13 at 12:00 p.m.

One of the reasons we're so excited for the new Star Wars movie — besides, well, NEW STAR WARS MOVIE — is that promotional materials for the film have prominently featured Rey, played by Daisy Ridley. So why is the seemingly awesome female character nowhere to be found in this Hasbro action-figure set available at Target?

While we haven't yet seen The Force Awakens, Rey is clearly one of the film's protagonists. She appears right in the center of the one-sheet poster, and is heavily featured in multiple trailers. And yet, this toy set assumes that kids won't want to play with her, or any female characters, apparently. Finn (John Boyega), Poe (Oscar Isaac), and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) are included, but alas — no Rey, Leia (Carrie Fisher), or the villainous Captain Phasma (Gwendoline Christie).

Jenna Busch of Legion of Leia noticed Rey's absence when the writer was shopping at Target. As Busch noted, this is far from a one-time problem. "Hasbro, what are you doing? What are you freaking doing?" Busch wrote. "Did you not hear us when we asked why Gamora wasn’t part of the Guardians of the Galaxy team? When there was a national campaign to get her on shirts and lunch boxes? Remember #WheresGamora? Oh, and then again when you decided to leave Black Widow out of all the Avengers sets? When you replaced her in a toy based on her own scene? " Sure enough, the site Heroic Girls further detailed the repeated, conspicuous lack of female characters in sets carried at Target. People are now protesting with the hashtag #WheresRey.

This may be just one product, but the resulting frustration is indicative of a larger problem. Back in 2014, the Disney Store's official Twitter account cheerily responded to a perturbed costumer that there were "no plans for Leia products." Disney later announced it would rectify the situation, but the sting lingered.

It's clear that women are a big part of The Force Awakens. Just this week, Entertainment Weekly reported that Leia is no longer called "Princess," and instead goes by "General." We can't wait to see Rey be heroic and Phasma evil. It looks like the movie isn't treating women as second-class citizens, so why doesn't the merchandise reflect that?

Refinery29 has reached out to Target, Hasbro, and Disney for comment.


More from Movies

As a former dancer, there are few things that bring me more joy than dance movies. You needn't have grown up at the barre to love and appreciate films in ...
In February of 2016, Emily Blunt was in the middle of filming Girl On The Train, a psychological thriller. While on-set, Blunt had a big secret: she was ...
After deciding to give Cinderella, Beauty and The Beast, The Jungle Book, and possibly Mulan the live action treatment, Disney has announced that yet ...
The 1960s never seemed creepier than in Rose McGowan’s haunting short film, Dawn (2014). McGowan, whose long acting résumé includes roles on TV megahits ...
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is easily one of the most highly-anticipated movies of the year, but we still have just over a month before Newt ...
How to describe a Tim Burton movie? The writer, director, producer, and illustrator has been sharing his visions of love, children, fear, and beauty with ...
In the upcoming indie sci-fi flick Crossbreed, Vivica A. Fox will play a president who sends war veterans on a mission to retrieve an alien whose DNA is ...
Have you ever re-watched an old movie and cringed? Maybe you were watching Breakfast at Tiffany's and Mickey Rooney's overtly racist Asian stereotype ...
A few months ago, I found myself riveted by an appearance Melissa Harris-Perry made on Real Time With Bill Maher. Harris-Perry had recently left her show...
The miracle and the curse of Netflix are one and the same: There is so much damn stuff to watch. In fact, if you're not sure exactly what you're looking ...
As if winning an Oscar wasn't enough, actress Lupita Nyong'o just proved that she has another talent under her belt: freestyle rapping. The 33-year-old ...
There are few movies that just beg to be parodied more than Fifty Shades of Grey. But High School Musical comes pretty darn close. In case you haven't ...
This month, many 15-year-olds are just getting in the back-to-school swing of things. But Auli'i Cravalho's schedule is a little bit different: The teen ...
Growing up is hard to do. Before "adulting" — that is, clumsily impersonating our role models and pretending we have our lives together — became a buzzword...