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Star Wars Female Star, Rey, AWOL From Toy Stores, Sparking Uproar

A cast metal figurine of Star Wars character Rey went on sale Sept. 4 in Disney toy Stores for $24.95. The character, however, has been omitted from several toy lines, sparking an uproar.  (Photo: Disney)

A cast metal figurine of Star Wars character Rey went on sale Sept. 4 in Disney toy Stores for $24.95. The character, however, has been omitted from several toy lines, sparking an uproar. (Photo: Disney)

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” did more than strike a blow for freedom in a galaxy far, far away. It gave us Rey, a strong female character and positive role model for young girls. But just try to find the character in the flood of Star Wars toys.

Rey has the Force with her in the movie, but she’s AWOL in “Star Wars” toys produced by powerhouse toy brand such as Hasbro.

Related: Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Read Why Critics Love It… And Hate It!

Protests emerged on social media after parents discovered the shortfall of Rey toys. #WheresRey has been trending on Twitter since Star Wars toys went on sale before Christmas, according to the BBC.

The character was omitted from Target’s branded multi-character figurine pack and Hasbro’s “Star Wars” themed Monopoly game, according to Adage.

The trade magazine did an online search for “Star Wars” toys on the Toys ‘R’ Us site, and found only eight items that included Rey. In contrast, Kylo Ren, the movie’s evil protagonist, was found in 31 items.

There are so few Rey toys on store shelves, a secondary market has blossomed on EBay, where figurines are selling for as high as $25, according to the trade magazine.

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A Hasbro spokesman said the company had a solid reason for leaving out Rey.

The Monopoly game was released in September, weeks before the movie’s release. Including her would have been a key plot spoiler, the spokesman said. Rey, played by newcomer Daisy Ridley, did not appear in previous “Star Wars” films.

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But the excuse seems lame, since Disney released a die-cast figurine of Rey in its own toy stores the same month. It’s priced at $24.95, but is selling for more than twice that much on Amazon.com.

Hasbro said Rey will be added to the latest edition of the Monopoly game due out later this year.

For its part, Target expressed regret at omitting Rey from its toy pack.

“Star Wars” has not only been a box office bonanza, raking in more than $1 billion, it’s also one of the hottest toys at the moment. And, it’s likely to remain so. Two more movies are planned as well as DVD and pay-per-view releases.

Despite the early gaff, toymakers aren’t about to ignore demand for the popular character. Toys ‘R’ Us added a new assortment of Episode VII items from Lego on Jan. 1. Rey and another female character, Captain Phasma, are included.

Hasbro plans to release 6-inch and 12-inch Rey action figures this month, while Target is also adding toys featuring Rey.

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