Look at her. Look at that shit-eating grin. She's a big fat cheater and she's loving it.
In the latest performative wokeness stunt from a big corporate brand, Hasbro has unveiled its latest Monopoly edition: Ms. Monopoly.
Its goal? To celebrate women trailblazers. Great! Women deserve to be celebrated just as much as men. If the recent 'Forbes listing only one woman on their list of 100 innovators' snafu is anything to go by, women need more recognition. After all, women invented the world's first computer program, windscreen wipers, kevlar, the dishwasher — heck, they invented half of maths.
They discovered radiation, dark matter and nuclear fission. They've conquered mountains and oceans and even the Australian government. Women are great — I would know; I am one. And how does Hasbro celebrate these world-changing trailblazers?
By telling them they can't win at Monopoly without cheating.
In Ms. Monopoly, out this November, "women receive 20 per cent more Monopoly Dollars when they pass GO than men – a fun spin in the game that creates a world where women have an advantage." That's according to the official press release, which, to be honest, is the most patronising bullgarbage I've seen in a long time.
One might argue that it's a tongue-in-cheek way of poking fun at the historic inequality faced by women — specifically, women in business — but I don't think it's been very well thought-out or considered. As even my own track record proves, women are perfectly capable of winning at Monopoly without having an unfair advantage. What's more, the whole gimmick cheapens what would have been a pretty cool set. As I said earlier, women deserve to be celebrated, but a board game that turns them into straight up cheaters as a 'symbolic gesture'?
It's a no from me.
Update 12:03pm 12/09/19: Kotaku Australia was provided with the following statement from Jen Boswinkel, Senior Director, Global Brand Strategy and Marketing at Hasbro:
Ms. Monopoly is a fun spin on the classic Monopoly game with the goal of recognizing the many contributions, products and technologies made possible by women throughout history.
While the game first and foremost celebrates the accomplishments of female entrepreneurs, there are also game pieces designed to create conversation around gender equality and reward the important role men play in supporting female empowerment. Ultimately, we believe the game and its content embodies a positive message that we hope is embraced by a wide variety of audiences.
With Ms. Monopoly, we are celebrating trailblazing female inventors and entrepreneurs who’ve made breakthrough contributions to our society across a spectrum of sectors. The game highlights a variety of inventions and innovations – from game-changing household and fashion items, to advances in science and technology. All of the inventions we feature are important in their own right because each has improved our overall way of life. And we hope all of them inspire aspiring inventors who play our game to bring their own dreams to life.
It's still a no from me.