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What's with the name?

Allow us to explain.

Consider the Following

Angry Birds Decides it Wants Some of My Little Pony‘s Cake

Rovio, parent company of Angry Birds, the video game-and-everything-else franchise featuring suicidal birds destroying the homes of kidnapper pigs (sometimes in space, as Star Wars characters), has rolled out its newest branch of the feathered family, Stella. Featuring a “feisty” lady lead and her “passionate pals,” could this be the game maker taking a step back from “boy toy market” oriented fare? There’s isn’t too much we know about Angry Birds Stella yet, but what it says to me so far is “we want to market to girls without actually saying ‘girls’,” and that’s pretty interesting.

The tagline on Stella is “Best friends forever, most of the time,” and Rovio’s press release plays up the idea of social connections and misconnections between a set of characters, which seems odd for a game where you fling birds to their death.

Stella may be pink, but she’s definitely one of the Angry Birds, a fierce and a feisty character with a great group of friends. Of course no story is complete without some interesting (fr)enemies!… There will be plenty of fun and adventure, but the bunch of passionate pals will also have to deal with some serious issues in order to protect their friendship and the environment they live in. Luckily, Stella and her friends are good at finding creative solutions!

Maybe it’s not odd, though? I guess I haven’t played anything but the original Angry Birds demo. Do Angry Birds games usually have rich characters? Is the character stuff just going to come into play in the inevitable cartoons and books? Maybe I’m even wrong in my initial suspicions, but “social drama between friends” is rarely a plot element used to sell media to boys, and that’s leaving out that, like, evil queen bird looming over a mountain in silhouette.

Anyway, regardless of whether Rovio intends Stella to appeal to girls, and regardless of whether the concept is particularly groundbreaking or progressive, from now on I will be referring Stella as Angry Birds: Friendship is Magic.

Yeah. That won’t confuse anybody.

(via Kotaku.)


  • Laura Truxillo

    “Stella may be pink, but she’s definitely one of the Angry Birds,”

    She may wear PINK like a GIRL, but don’t worry, she’s still totally cool. Like One of the Boys, even!

    Huh. Can’t say much without seeing the actual game, but the wording there kinda makes me side-eye it a bit.

  • Nirali

    Sounds a lot like the Ms. Male character trope in use

  • Silvermoonlight

    I really respect the Angry Birds creators for doing this as there are not enough female protagonists in games in general. Granted she’s a bird but the message is just as great. I mean Rovio could have chosen any of the other birds as a spin off, in fact they could all have spin off games and cartoons but its great that they picked Stella first. Only nit pick is the line “She may wear PINK like a GIRL, but don’t worry, she’s still totally cool. Like One of the Boys, even!” Because that sounds kind of naff, but I’ll put that down to Rovio being very new to this type of marketing.

  • Jeanie Tortoisefly

    Can we talk for a minute about the fact that the little blue bird is wearing something very similar to a Jayne hat? Or is that just me?

  • locuas

    wait…weren’t the angry birds already girls? then…where did the eggs come from? no. i am not kidding, up until now i was under the assumption the angry birds were the mothers of the eggs.

  • Laura Truxillo

    IIRC, one of the Angry Birds is a female. The big white one. Named Mathilda or something like that. She makes the eggs. I…think?

  • locuas

    so wait, is it like Usagi Yojimbo and every female baby is the same species as the mother but the males are like the father? how many white birds are there? because i think the number of white birds would need to be about the same as all the other birds combined to keep the population and avoid inbreeding or…you know……sharing……i think i better stop overthinking this…

  • Vian Lawson

    And you can tell which ones are the girly, girly girls, because EYELASHES. Gah.

  • Travis

    That is totally a Jayne Hat.

    Coming Soon: Angry Birds Firefly!

  • Ruby Dynamite

    My, what a cunning hat!

  • Ruby Dynamite

    I happily await the day when we get a soft-butch Angry Bird, complete with spiky buzzcut and work boots.

  • Ashe

    “Stella may be pink, but she’s definitely one of the Angry Birds”

    “a fierce and a feisty character”

    -10 points for coded sexism disguised as compliments and mutually exclusive logistics, to the corner with you

  • Anonymous

    “Because it’s for girls, it NEEDS pink and sass! GRRRRRRLLL POWA 4 LYFE!!!!”


  • Angela Korra’ti (Highland)

    Meh, don’t care. Don’t get me wrong, I _do_ like me some Angry Birds, but the only character development I care about in these games is to smash right into those piggies. Because those little piggies are _bastards_.

    (Also, yeah, not impressed by the “well she’s a girl so clearly she has to be PINK” branding, either.)

  • Brittany K

    Someone needs to find that guy that whined about how hard it was to make female characters that look differently and point out that someone managed to do it with little round birds so it can’t be that hard.

  • Dessa Brewington

    No, Angry Birds doesn’t normally have much of a story or character development going on. This game might well be a departure from the usual fling crap at things formula?

  • Laura Truxillo

    I think technically, they’re supposed to be a single character. It’s like TF2. Yeah, technically Scout and Sniper are “classes” but the supplemental material portrays them as people, with personalities and all.

  • Laura Truxillo

    But they don’t have feet?

  • Laura Truxillo

    I’m starting to wonder how often male characters are described as “fiesty.” Like, precocious little kid, maybe?

  • Ruby Dynamite

    Birds can’t hold stuff with their wings, either, but the Star Wars Angry Birds showed them holding light sabers? O.o

  • Laura Truxillo

    I’m just saying, where do you put the boots? On the wings?

  • Ruby Dynamite

    Just stick ‘em down there where the feet would usually be on a bird.

  • locuas

    what is their relatinoship with the eggs, then? are they all mathilda’s? are they the parents? are they siblings?

  • JustPlainSomething

    I mean, at least they look like they fit within the original Angry Birds designs. Unlike a particular Danish construction toy company that make super “other” girl versions of their toys. cough cough.

  • JustPlainSomething

    I mean, at least they look like they fit within the original Angry Birds designs. Unlike a particular Danish construction toy company that make super “other” girl versions of their toys. cough cough.

  • Ashe

    Exactly. I’ve only heard that term used for a little boy before, and yet ‘feisty’ will be thrown at girls, teens and women alike.


  • Laura Truxillo

    I dunno. I think birds can lay eggs without the eggs actually being fertilized. They just won’t watch or anything. But the birds don’t always know that.

  • locuas

    kind of makes the entire conflict pointles xD

  • Gemma Mason

    Unimpressed. Once upon a time, the birds were not given a gender at all — and if you’re just playing the main game, that’s still true. Pretty much everything they’ve done since then has been so full of gender-fail that there’s really no fixing it at this point: they made all the characters male, then they realised that Matilda lays eggs so she’d better be female, then they started making girly pink female ones … give me a break. This isn’t representation. Representation would have been realising, when they initially started to flesh out their popular-with-all-genders game, that there was no need to make it male-dominated in the first place. Creating a patronising girl-ghetto does nothing to fix this.