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The Story Behind the UK Toy Spot That’s Smashing Gender Stereotypes

Watch the spot HERE.

The seemingly innocuous world of children’s toys has become a political minefield over recent years. Toys are increasingly marketed along gendered lines – pink and princess for girls, construction and action for boys. And parents are pretty pissed off.

But this week one UK toy store decided to take a stand against gender stereotyping. Smyths Toys, along with its agency McCann Manchester, Outsider director Henry Littlechild and character design, CGI and animation from MPC, launched “If I Were A Toy,” an animated story that uses the lyrics of Beyoncé’s “If I Were A Boy.” It takes the viewer on a journey through the imagination of a young boy called Oscar. Oscar imagines life as various toys, such as a rocket, a Millennium Falcon pilot and a dancing bug. But the scene that’s earned the brand praise from the likes of The Huffington Post, Mashable, and the Metro is the one that sees Oscar donning a pink dress and crown and waving to his subjects from atop a castle. The scene of Oscar dressed as a princess has led to a flurry of social media praise and over 500,000 people have now viewed the spot since it was posted on YouTube on Friday 23rd September.

LBB’s Addison Capper chatted with McCann Manchester creatives Adam Richardson and Becci Tyrrell, and director Henry Littlechild to find out more about this non-conforming campaign.

Click HERE to read the interview with director Henry Littlechild and McCann.