You may not yet have heard of Gangly Sister, but you will soon. They’ll be coming out with an original 3D animation, Purple and Nine, later this month, and it’s like nothing you’ve ever seen, according to the company founders, Rebecca Rachmany and Miriam Lottner.
“Purple and Nine are the names of the two main characters, which is already different,” says Rachmany. “But mainly, we don’t talk down to children, and we don’t depend on stereotypes or evil villains to build our plots. It’s fun, it’s funny, and it’s about the real things kids are dealing with.”
The main thing kids are dealing with is what kind of adult they want to be. Developmentally, between the ages of 7 and 12, kids are exploring who they want to be as adults. Tellingly, the girls in the video say they want to be doctors, princesses and ballerinas, but none of them said they wanted to be a scientist or engineer.
“We have been working in high-tech for 20 years, and we kept asking ourselves why there are so few women in this field. We realized that there are practically no great role models for girls. Tech is seen as difficult or geeky,” says Lottner. “In our video series, tech is just something you use to solve a problem.”
Kids are dealing with a lot these days. By age 10, most kids are aware of issues such as animal rights, the environment, and human rights. They know kids in their own neighborhood who need help. And, of course, we all have our own personal problem. According to the Gangly Sister founders, today, we use technology to solve most of our problems.
“Technology can be an app on your telephone. It can also be a vegetable with more nutrients, a cure for a disease, a car that doesn’t pollute or a way to recycle shoes,” says Rachmany. “We are all interested in medicine, food, and transport. Pointing girls in these directions means we have more brainpower working on these issues, reaching more solutions and more innovation.”
Why a cartoon series?
“Why not? Children get most of their ideas about heroes from television and the movies. We wanted heroines that are smart and also trendy,” said Lottner. “Purple and Nine like robots but they also like kittens. If you watch TV, you’d think there’s some kind of system where opticians hide the contact lenses when smart people enter the shop. It’s just ridiculous and we are out to break the rules.”
Rachmany takes that one step further.
“We want our children to resolve conflict without violence, but most of what you see in the media shows that bad guys are out there, and you need to resort to force. That’s also ridiculous. We are showing that you can have a fun adventure without hurting anyone,” she says.
If you’re interested in learning more, see their site www.ganglysister.com and subscribe to their newsletter to be one of the first to see Purple and Nine when it’s released.
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