An Arguement for Genderlocking

We know the Glatorian had Gender, Greg has confirmed the GBs were just intelligent Glatorian, we also know that the GBs saw females as more level headed and calm, as when they created Orde it showed them that giving that kind of power to a male is potetially dangerous. This is what we know from canon. Here is a direct quote from Biosector01,

[quote]
The Great Beings believed females to be gentler than males. This influenced their experiments twice, first when they chose a female Vorox to become the Element Lord of Sand, and again when they made all Matoran, Toa, and Turaga of Psionics female after Toa Orde’s aggression caused problems. The efficacy of these choices is unknown, although the Sand Tribe fought in the Core War the same as the others.[/quote]

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This topic is actually a lot bigger on some other sites, for example there was a biggish debate on BZpower about genderlocking and the negative aspects of it. On the boards it’s not seen as big of a topic, but elsewhere I’ve seen it be bigger.

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laughs in Orde

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I mean, Gender locking makes sense lore wise given the great being’s ideas of gender, since they were the creators of the Matoran Universe it makes sense their ideas of how society works would find their way into it. However, I believe when people argue against the idea of gender locking, they aren’t arguing that it doesn’t make sense in canon, rather that it is bad in a meta/storytelling sense. (I will state for the record, when the gender locking wasn’t a thing with the Glatorian, we got an all male wave anyways, so it can be argued that the gender locking ensures a female member, but i digress).
I know Bionicle was a “boys toy” so having a mostly male cast was a given, but honestly Id prefer the theme go in a route like Transformers in the future, and introduce more female characters and sets.

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Gender locking has always come across as one of the weirdly sexist, extremely limiting, and just outright strange pieces of lore from Gen 1. As some one who loves Gen 1 lore, it’s the first thing I throw out when I’m using the lore in my own stuff since it’s so bizarre and somewhat offensive.

My argument against gender locking is that it limits the kind of characters that you can create (and consequently the kind of stories you can tell), and basically takes the “token girl team member” trope to a ridiculous extreme.

Side tangent about gender in Bionicle Gen 1 in general: isn’t weird how all the inhabitants of the matoran universe have a strictly defined idea of gender but have no notions of sex or sexuality? It’s actually an interesting concept that would cool to explore–what does a society that is only gendered but not sexed look like?

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How?

Because love isn’t cannon.

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It just comes down to the fact that parents wouldn’t buy boys “the one for girls” if they were told the “blue ones” were female. Of course this changed in HF and G2.

No offense, but parents will never consider a robot with blades and blasters a toy “for girls”.

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Ehh, ya got a point. I was thinking of Gali Mata, Nokama, and the Matoran.

Pretty much same there. They are clone sets of toys that are considered “boy toys”. Plus, the said parent must be extremely dumb to look at Gali Mata and to say “My son won’t like it, it’s for girls”.

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I’m pretty sure that 99% of parents, and most casual fan kids, would have had no idea that the blue ones were female. My parents certainly didnt know or care.

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I guess 99% of the parents didn’t know and there was nothing to let them know than the kids themselves.

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I know that you’re probably not asking this question in good faith but I’ll answer anyway: it’s sexist and offensive because it essentially makes the world of Bionicle provide a meta-level commentary that women can only do certain things, and men can only do other things; and that these things are often mutually exclusive. You need only to go outside and talk to real people in the world to see how this isn’t true.

You’re right: love isn’t cannon–which is exactly my point. In our society, ideas of gender, sex, and sexuality are deeply intertwined, but in the world of the matoran universe they only experience gender and nothing else. The reason why I said it’s an interesting idea to explore is because these notions are seemingly so interdependent to us, but in the matoran universe the opposite is the case.

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Dude… This really isn’t true. Do you really think that somebody made all the women in the Bionicle universe water-related because they were “sexist”? It is a kid toyline. Back then it was regular stuffs to have all the women part of a more distinct group. And even in today’s world is pretty regular too. Nobody made the Ga-Matoran female because they wanted to show that women “can’t do stuffs” (especially after making Gali and Nokama one of the best characters in the entire Bionicle universe till that point), only because they wanted kids to identify them better.

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I’m not saying the creators of Bionicle are sexist–I never said anything of the sort. What I said was the resulting lore that they created comes across as quite sexist and offensive. This isn’t a personal attack on anyone, it’s a critique of the lore itself.

What does this mean exactly? Can things created for children not be sexist in any way? Is children’s entertainment somehow exempt from this? I think that’s a pretty ridiculous and ignorant claim to make.

I also don’t see how making all the female characters in the early years related to element of water helps “kids to identify them better.” Is there something inherently female about water or are you saying that women / girls are obsessed with water for whatever reason?

Me critiquing the weird sexist nature of gender locking isn’t me saying that Nokama and Gali are bad characters–they’re actually some of my favourite from Gen 1. You can critique something and still love it. I only want Bionicle to be better.

And I am not saying some sat down with the explicit intention of “Let’s make all the female characters limited to certain elements because that will show girls that their abilities are limited! Muahahaha I’m a sexist!” These things are subtle and are rarely specifically intended by the creators.

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This may be because women are genetically better at some things, and men are genetically better with others. It’s proven fact. The idea that men and women are interchangeable is false. https://www.cnsnews.com/commentary/john-stonestreet/more-evidence-men-and-women-are-not-interchangeable-having-children

Now, of course there are excepetions to the rule, but we do not base all mankind off of one exception. We look at the average, and make an assumption. Now, even if someone cannot accept that there are biological differences between the sexes, we can look at Bionicle itself. In Bionicle, it is stated by the great beings, (I’ve quoted it up there), that when they created the Matoran, females were more peaceful, which reflects (most) of real life. Then, it makes sense that jobs that required a less aggressive approach would be better suited to female Matoran. Its not sexist, a path of logic the great beings followed. Now, this is not intended to offend anyone, but instead, just to back up the point I’m trying to make. Thank you for coming to my TED talk. /s

Edit: Also, as an asside, just because I tale this point of view doesn’t mean I am any label, Sexist Bigotted ECT. Instead, Gali is my favorite Toa Mata, and is among my favorite Toa. Macku and Hali make up my favorite Matoran, and I happen to own the sets for almost every incarnation of said characters. I would even like to be a Matoran of Water myself if I lived in the MU. I’m simply taking this stance, and I feel it adds to the uniqueness of Bionicle.

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I think you are exagerating. Nobody got offended that the females of this universe are blue.

OK, let’s step back and re-evaluate this situation: yes, the Bionicle lore has no excuse if it is sexist or racist or whatever. The thing is that it isn’t. The rule that all the females are water-related was broke many many years ago. You could call the series sexist if all of the females in the story would be poorly made, or put into the sidelines, but when we have characters like both Galis, Nokama, Hahli, etc, that are fanloved and appreciated, can you really keep saying that it is sexist? Hell! I would personally say that some of the females got more love by most of the males. We have bad@ss women who can defeat monsters and demons, yet the fact that they are all blue is somehow sexist.[quote=“BioStef, post:38, topic:49386”]
I also don’t see how making all the female characters in the early years related to element of water helps “kids to identify them better.”
[/quote]

“Oh hey! It’s the blue Toa! The other two were women, so I think this one is too.”

OK, now you really are exagerating. Personally my mentality have been changed by my long running passion for Bionicle. This might be the reason I associate the female gender with the colour blue, rather than pink or green or yellow. The thing is that out of all of the original elements the writers (and if I think a little me too) thought that water would be the most fitting for a woman. It’s nothing stereotypical, it was just Lego’s preferance.

Again, I think you are exagerating. This genderlocking is an inconvenience, a limitation in storytelling, but not sexist. It’s not a subtle way to limit women. It was just a marketing choice made by Lego. A choice later backed up by the lore. I think you should take a brake. I assure you: nobody wants to limit women and their talents, and the ones who actually do should be pointed on the street. But digging deep into small details like this, while there are sexist and feminist movements threatning the peace between women and men, it just seems to be weird, exagerating nitpicking.

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When it comes to the genders of Bionicle and the Matoran-species. I have a hard time associating the genders with the characters but tend to associate them with the elements. What I mean is from how look at it, the Matoran society is functionally a gender-less one.

What I mean is that while certain elements had certain traits that gave “genders” according to what the Great Beings decided, the elements really only have gender in name, not functionality.

Don’t know if that expressed my views well enough, but hopefully it did.

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Nobody has to, it still doesn’t change the fact that it’s inherently sexist

Didn’t Gali and Nokama inhabit the same role in the group, With the differences being only minor? The point isn’t that the female characters were bad, but that they were confined to one role

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If nobody got offended by it, why are we having this debate?

I think it’s a stretch to say that the two had the same role in what were two very different sagas. Yes, they were the ones to want peace between the brothers, if I remember correctly, but anything else related to them (aside of the obvious) was pretty different.
And also, even if the fact that they woyld be “sexist” because they have one element (even tho again: lore-wise it makes sense for them to be water-based), isn’t it enough of a counter balance how good 70% of them all have? The fact that they are water-based doesn’t even matter. They could be fire or earth or whatever. As long as they are good, rounded characters nothing else matters. The fact that a good part of them were water-based seems a fabricated reason to point fingers at awesome characters.

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