What Toys R Us got right and wrong in this year's holiday catalog

The Toys R Us catalog arrived at our house yesterday and my daughter circled all the stuff she’d like to see under the Christmas tree this year, i.e. literally everything on every page. (You’ll see in the pictures. Everything is circled.)

I opened the catalog with some trepidation. In years past, Toys R Us has not had the best track record with marketing toys toward girls. The store is still divided into pink aisles and “normal” aisles. Because boys and boys’ toys are the default. Girls’ toys are “other.” Girls are “other.”

Girls today do not limit themselves to the pink aisle. One thing I’ve noticed this Halloween is that more and more girls are choosing not to adhere to the limits and expectations set by society and certain companies’ marketing departments. My daughter is going as a red ninja for Halloween. My niece is being Darth Vader. A girl in my daughter’s class decided to go as Spider-Man because her parents couldn’t find a Captain America costume in her size.

(Wouldn’t it be nice, though, if the girls had more mainstream female superheroes to draw upon? I mean…come on, Marvel.)

However I did see some positive things in this year’s Toys R Us catalog. Some. There is room for improvement.

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