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Parents Are Upset Popular 'LOL Surprise' Dolls Are Anatomically Correct

Many toys companies are making their products more gender-neutral to coincide with increased parental demand for these items. It's becoming more common to see girls playing with toy trucks in commercials and dolls being advertised for boys and girls.

However, some parents online are wondering if one popular toy has gone too far with this mandate.

If you're a parent, chances are pretty good that you're familiar with the toy phenomenon known as LOL Surprise Dolls.

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These small, collectible dolls come in blind boxes, meaning that you don't know which doll or accessory you'll get. I guess that's where the "Surprise" aspect of the name comes into play.

The dolls are sold in plastic balls or capsules like these.

Flickr | Sharon Hahn Darlin

There's no way to tell which doll you will get until you buy it and open it. That said, the dolls are grouped by certain themes or collections which is made clear on the packaging.

In 2018, the company behind the dolls, MGA Entertainment, launched a line of boy dolls.

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The line was one way to make the toy more appealing to boys, and to give children the option to make families out of the characters.

It didn't take parents long to call out the company over one "surprise" that came with these new, male dolls.

Parents took to social media to express concerns over the dolls for being anatomically correct.

Facebook | Melissa Moore

Like the female dolls, the male dolls have a small hole where their genitals would be. However, while the female dolls just have the hole, the males have a sculpted penis and testicles as well.

Since you don't know which doll you'll get, some parents were quite upset over the anatomically correct dolls.

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"Ummmm... why in the h*** does my 5-year-old daughters lol doll have a penis and balls?" said one upset parent on the company's Facebook page.

Some have even called the design "disgusting."

Facebook | LOL Surprise

"Why would you feel the need to put that on a doll for very young children and expect parents to have that conversation with children under 6??

"That was so irresponsible and disgusting, we have spent so much money on these dolls and my kids love them but we are DONE with these," another parent wrote on the company's Facebook page.

Other parents said the dolls forced them to have "awkward and unnecessary" conversations with their children.

A number of parents were taken back by the doll's design.

There were also comparisons made to another popular male doll – Mattel's Ken doll.

Flickr | VintageZealot

Ken was famously designed with ambiguous genitals, and some parents wondered why these dolls couldn't have followed a similar design.

"At least Mattel had the decency to mold briefs on the Ken dolls," said one Facebook user.

However, despite the heat, MGA Entertainment stands by the dolls' designs.

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"With the introduction of the ultra-rare Punk Bois the brand will now be universally gender-inclusive for both girls and boys. For many years the toy industry has been moving towards dolls that are more “real” and anatomically correct.

"We believe this trend is here to stay and we will continue to lead the charge in toys becoming more gender-inclusive," the company said in a Facebook post.

The company went on to say that they think boys who play with the dolls will be glad to have a toy that resembles them.

Facebook | Ryan Gardner

"We think boys will be excited to have a doll that looks like them. Also, many of our girl fans have brothers of their own and will be excited their LOL Surprise dolls have a “real” brother, just like they do," the company said.

Even though the boy dolls have been out for nearly two years, the company is still being criticized by concerned parents.

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However, MGA Entertainment maintains that the design was done with a lot of consideration.

"The feature was meant to be thoughtful and reflective of real life, but designed in a kid-appropriate way," the company recently said in a Facebook response to one parent.

Another Facebook user shared an image of a vintage baby doll that is anatomically correct on the company's Facebook page to show that these dolls are nothing new.

Facebook | Tammy Durham

"These are dolls I've had forever and no complaints were made. I don’t see the problem," said Facebook user Tammy Durham.

Other parents have praised the company's decision to make anatomically-correct dolls.

The company does now state that the dolls are anatomically correct when customers purchase them online, so maybe that will downplay the surprise felt by some parents who weren't prepared these accurate dolls.

What do you think?

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Are the anatomically correct dolls taking things too far, or is this a step in the right direction for toy companies?

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