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Modern Upgrade For Iconic Plastic Injection Green Soldiers

BMC Toys have announced plans to introduce a new line of plastic green soldiers, one that’s exclusively female. Reacting to mounting requests from female veterans, girls, and one very persuasive letter from a six-year-old, the leading toy manufacturer will release several female toy soldiers in all the classic poses, including shooting rifles and holding bazookas.

The iconic male figurines have been a staple toy for young boys the world over since they were first introduced in 1938. The new platoon of plastic toy soldiers represents the diversity in today’s army and, of course, the vital contribution of female troops who have bravely served their country.

News that plastic injection green soldiers are to get a modern upgrade has been met with widespread praise by everyone serving in the armed forces. Fostering patriotism and bravery in young children is paramount to helping them overcome any obstacles they may face. Plastic green army soldiers are, arguably, the toys which embody these traits.

Moreover, in recognising and showcasing the contribution that female troops have made, the message of equality is clear: whatever a man can do, a woman can too. This message is of great value and when cultivated from a young age, helps reinforce positive attitudes among boys and girls.

Responding to a Letter

As reported by many leading news outlets in the US, including CNN, it was a young six-year-old child who wrote to BMC Toys named Vivian Lord. As one of the last remaining manufacturers of green plastic men, the young girl simply asked the question of why they don’t make girl army men. She then charmingly asks if the toy company could make army girls that look like women and promised that if they did, she and her friends would play with them every single day.

Surprisingly, hers wasn’t the first letter the owner of BMC Toys, Jeff Imel had received querying why there were no female troops. Last year, Jo Ann Ortloff, a retired master chief, also contacted Imel as she was hoping to buy female soldiers for her granddaughters and made a compelling case for female plastic army figurines. Imel also stated that he had intended to introduce female troops to be sold along with the traditional plastic army men. Vivian Lord’s letter expedited the process.

He stated that although the cost to manufacture a set of plastic figurines is much higher than people may think, Vivian’s letter and the raft of media enquiries that his company received after the little girl’s letter went viral convinced him that it was time for female plastic soldiers to make their entrance.

The Birth of Female Plastic Army Soldiers

Jeff Imel has already prepared a budget that will include at least four different figurine poses in a pack of twenty-four. A sculpture has already been commissioned for the sets first pose to be a female soldier in combat gear holding a gun and a pair of binoculars.

Following the successful design of this soldier, Imel is determined to press on with the collection by introducing female figurines standing with a rifle or sniper or kneeling with a bazooka. The more diverse the figurines, the more opportunities that girls will have to have the most fun with them, setting up battle strategies and engaging imagined enemies on the field of battle.

Credit: BMC Toys

The Wider Implications of Female Plastic Army Soldiers

Of course, the introduction of female plastic soldiers is an example of the wider societal paradigms of the twenty-first century. It’s about the message that we send to young people and the opportunity for anyone to grow up to be what they want to be.

Certainly, fifty years ago, the opportunities for women were somewhat myopic. Roles were defined from an early age and non-conformity to accepted norms was discouraged. Although the first woman to enlist in the armed forces was Loretta Walsh in 1917 and a law was passed in 1948 that allowed women to be a permanent part of the military services, it wasn’t until 1976 that the first group of women were enrolled the US military academy, Westpoint. In 2013, almost a century since the first woman enlisted in the army, just 16% of the class were woman.

However, there is change on the horizon. The 2021 Westpoint class welcomed more women and people of diverse backgrounds and ethnicities than ever before. Of the 1,200 cadets, 301 were women. That’s 25%, a significant increase in just under a decade.

The Changing Times

Is it correct to think that female plastic toy army figurines will contribute towards an increasing intake of female military cadets in the coming years? In truth, it’s difficult to say. However, given the changing societal opinions and that more and more girls are showing an interest in military careers, surely encouraging this ambition couldn’t hurt, right?

Today more than any time ever before, the military complex is embracing diversity. In 2016, the US army began accepting female applicants to combat arms, including infantry, armour and fire support specialists. By 2018, there were five hundred women serving in combat positions.

The fact that the plastic injection green soldiers have had a modern update has been heartily welcomed. It’s estimated that the first soldiers will hit the market in time for Christmas 2020. We’re sure that Vivian Lord will be asking her parents for a set of soldiers to play with on Christmas day next year.