A Unisex Easy-Bake Oven Anyone?
By Jerry Portwood
Pictured: The current purple and pink Easy-Bake Oven that's available
We told you about the gender-neutral toy ads from the Swedish Toys 'R' Us affiliate. Now it seems that Hasbro has listened to the folks out there calling for more gender neutral toys for boys and girls and is working on a "unisex" Easy-Bake Oven, which can be seen as the Holy Grail of gender-neutral toys, long been a dream of the politically correct.
According to news reports, McKenna Pope, a 13-year-old New Jersey girl, "got more than 40,000 signatures on her online petition at Change.org and the support of celebrity chefs including Bobby Flay." She wanted to get a gift for her little brother, 4-year-old Gavyin Boscio, but could only find purple and pink ones. Although these nifty Easy-Bake Ovens don't seem as feminine as the ones of yesteryear, McKenna wanted one that she thought would be appropriate for her lil bro.
Hasbro invited McKenna and her family to its Rhode Island headquarters and executives showed off a prototype of their newest Easy-Bake: one that's black, silver and blue.
McKenna says the company is doing everything she asked, including putting boys in the ads, according to sources.
John Frascotti, Hasbro's chief marketing officer, said that the classic toy has had about a dozen different color schemes, from yellow to green to teal to silver, since first being introduced in 1963. "It's actually a product that's played with by both boys and girls," he said. "We will continue to offer the existing product too because it's so popular." The most recent version, introduced in 2011, is mostly purple with pink accents.
"I think that they really met most or even all of what I wanted them to do, and they really amazed me," she said, adding that Gavyn thought the new design was "awesome."
Of course, with the popularity of the Food Network and other foodie shows, it seems that the biggest hurdle—showing that men do a lot of cooking (and baking)—was surmounted quite a while ago.