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As the DC Superhero Girls theme song urges, “Get your cape on!”  Announced earlier this year, Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment have teamed up with Mattel, Random House Children’s Books, and LEGO to create a whole new universe centered around empowering young girls.  We hadn’t seen or heard very much since that initial announcement, but now, especially with today’s launch of the DC Superhero Girls website, the project seems to be on full-throttle.  According to USA Today, the franchise will be producing “toys, books, graphic novels, digital content, apparel and animation that tap into the current strength of superheroes and female empowerment in pop culture.”

Now, there are a lot of components to this initiative, so let’s start with the website.  The vibe is fresh and modern, and features an animated digital short (the first of many) titled “Welcome to Super Hero High.”  The video showcases male heroes as well as females, with the message of working together.  Here’s how the site was described in the press release:

“Today’s launch features a pantheon of DC Comics characters that have been brought to life in a completely new artistic style and aesthetic, through immersive videos, games, quizzes, character photos, bios and more.

In the coming weeks and months the new website will be regularly updated with new animated digital content and previews of upcoming products slated for 2016.  In conjunction with the website launch, DC Super Hero Girls will have a dedicated presence across a number of social media platforms, including exclusive DC Super Hero Girls YouTube, Facebook and Instagram accounts, to cater to social media savvy girls and their parents.”

Here’s the introductory video:

Onto the toys!  DC Super Hero Girls will be bringing their “be your own hero” inspired selves to New York Comic Con from October 8th to the 11th where, among many other sneak peeks and activities, attendees will get a look at Mattel’s upcoming product line of action figures for the girls.  With designs on both a 6” and 12” scale, these fierce females are striking heroic poses and sporting strong, athletic bodies.  Lisa McKnight, senior vice president for marketing in North America for Mattel, explains what sets these “dolls” apart:

“These girls are practical,” “They know that if they themselves are going to role-play being the superhero and save the day, they need to be in functional fashions. They can’t have a lot of adornments that can get caught on something. They want to be in comfortable footwear. So we definitely tapped into that.”

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Also at NYCC, a dedicated panel  of the amazing and creative women working behind the scenes of DC Super Hero Girls will be held on Thursday, October 8th at 5:30pm in Room 1B03; with panelists including:

  • Moderator: Tiffany Smith, DC All Access
  • Ashley Eckstein, Voice of DCSHGs’ “Cheetah”
  • Aria Moffly, DCE Creative Director
  • Shea Fontana, DCSHG Animation Writer & DC Comics Graphic Novel Author
  • Lisa Yee, Random House Children’s Books DCSHGs Middle-Grade Novel Series Author
  • Christine Kim, Mattel Toy Design Manager
  • Tania Missad, Mattel Consumer Insights Director

Random House will also be found at NYCC, unveiling a sneak peek of the first book in their middle-grade novel series, titled Wonder Woman at Superhero High.  DC Entertainment has also signed on writer Shea Fontana to create the franchise’s very first graphic novel.  It’s scheduled for release in July 2016, and is described as such:

“…the young Super Heroes are kidnapped by a teenage Lex Luthor the day before Super Hero High’s semester finals. Together, they must combine their Super Hero powers to defeat Luthor and race back to school before final exams begin.”

As the press release states,

DC Super Hero Girls centers on DC Comics characters during their formative teen years at Super Hero High. DC Comics’ icons including Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, Bumblebee, Poison Ivy, and Katana are featured in storylines that explore being a unique teen, including discovering their super powers, nurturing friendships and mastering the fundamentals of being their own hero.”

It’s so important that this message is being perpetuated right now, and this initiative is doing a masterful job at spreading the word.  By not excluding male characters (other attendees of Super Hero High include Hal Jordan, Beast Boy, The Flash, and more), the point is being driven home that female empowerment is something both sexes can and should support.  It’s not about putting one side down and boosting the other up, it’s about working together for equality across the board.  I’m sure I’m not the only one that can’t wait to see how much of a positive impact DC Superhero Girls is bound to make on young girls and boys!

Sources: USA Today, press release

Category: Cool Stuff

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