Lego is launching a rainbow-themed LGBTQ+ set called 'Everyone Is Awesome' with no gender assigned to all but one of the figures.
The purple figure is the only one which has a specific gender and - with a beehive wig - represents 'the fabulous drag queens out there,' according to the designer, Matthew Ashton.
Ashton, Vice President of Design at the Danish toymaker, originally created the set for his own desk but it soon attracted the attention of colleagues.
Everyone Is Awesome: Lego to launch first LGBTQ+ set https://t.co/1ea56VYnAi— The Guardian (@guardian) May 20, 2021
'Other members of Lego's LGBTQ+ community came by to tell me they loved it,' Ashton told The Guardian. 'So I thought, "maybe it's something we should share."'
Ashton, who was executive producer for the 2014 Lego Movie, said that he had struggled with being LGBTQ+ during his childhood.
'Trying to be someone I wasn’t was exhausting. I wish, as a kid, I had looked at the world and thought: "This is going to be OK, there’s a place for me." I wish I’d seen an inclusive statement that said "everyone is awesome,"' Ashton said.
He added that he was proud to work for a company that wanted to be outspoken on the issue.
Previous LGBTQ+ representations by Lego have been more subtle nods, including a little rainbow flag in a build of Trafalgar Square and a bride and groom sold separately so that fans could couple them how they wished.
Flynn DeMarco, a member of the LGBTQ+ community who competes in the US TV show Lego Masters, said that it 'means a lot' to see the set.
'Often LGBTQ+ people don’t feel seen, especially by corporations. There’s a lot of lip service and not a lot of action. So this feels like a big statement,' he told The Guardian.
DeMarco said it filled him with joy, making 'me smile, then cry, then smile a little more.'
Ashton said: 'I wanted to create a model that symbolises inclusivity and celebrates everyone, no matter how they identify or who they love.
'Everyone is unique, and with a little more love, acceptance and understanding in the world, we can all feel more free to be our true AWESOME selves!
'This model shows that we care, and that we truly believe "Everyone is awesome!"'
The new set will go on sale on June 1, the first day of Pride month.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.