Just weeks after stories swirled about a complaint letter penned by an unsatisfied 6-year-old girl from Arkansas in response to a glaring lack of green Army women figurines, one toy maker is officially doing something about it.
BMC Toys, one of three companies to receive letters from young Vivian Lord — and the only to respond — has begun producing women figurines to be included in the iconic toy set that dates back to the 1930s.
Vivian Lord’s letters were the result of an excited purchase of one of the iconic sets.
The once-exuberant girl became flummoxed when, sifting through figures contorted into one of an array of well-known fighting positions, she realized none looked like her.
“Why do you not make girl army men?" she wrote in her letters.
“Some girls don’t like pink, so please can you make army girls that look like women?"
Jeff Imel of BMC Toys wasted little time responding, notifying the disgruntled customer that he had been kicking around the idea of manufacturing green women figurines for years.
With enough support, it can happen, Imel responded.
As it turns out, support came quickly.
“I promised to conduct some research, and discovered there might be enough folks looking for Little Green Army Women to consider producing some,” Imel wrote in a BMC Toys blog.
Customers looking for a product is just one part of the production process, however. The real hurdle was acquiring funding.
“To do a new set of figures like this, it’s about the cost of a modest new car, you know, so I checked the couch cushions, came up empty,” Imel joked with WNEP news.
But the requests in support of young Vivian Lord kept pouring in, so Imel made the call to initiate production.
“Maybe having a set of plastic Army women will help some kid somewhere be the hero of their own story at playtime,” Immel told WNEP.
“And I think that’s a good thing for everybody.”
The new sets are scheduled for a fall 2020 release.
J.D. Simkins is a writer and editor for Military Times, and a USMC veteran.