Miss Bimbo

// 25 March 2008

It almost seems redundant to blog about Miss Bimbo. For once, a developer has produced a game so offensive that this story is everywhere. Miss Bimbo was the first thing my co-worker told me about when I got into the office. During the day, it popped up on countless feminist blogs. It was on the BBC news when I got home from work. And it seems almost every newspaper has run a story about it.

Yet, still, I feel compelled to tell you about Miss Bimbo, an online game aimed at nine to 16 year olds. The problems start early. As the Times reports it, players “buy” a bimbo, keep her thin with diet pills and earn “bimbo dollars” to pay for plastic surgery.

Launched a month ago in the UK, Miss Bimbo has already kicked up a shit storm and drawn in 1.2 million players in France. The game’s creator, Nicholas Jacquart, defends this vile creation thus:

The game is structured in such a way that it simply mirrors real life in a tongue-in-cheek way. It is not a bad influence for young children. They learn to take care of their bimbos. The missions and goals for the bimbos are morally sound and teach children about the real world.

“If they eat too much chocolate in the game, it is bad for their bimbos’ bodies and their happiness levels compared to if they eat fruit and vegetables, which reinforces positive healthy eating messages.

No, I’m not kidding.

From The Times:

Level 7

After you broke up with your boyfriend you went on an eating binge! Now it’s time to diet . . . Your target weight is less than 132lbs

Level 9

Have a nip and tuck operation for a brand new face. You’ve found work as a plus-size model. To gain those vivacious curves, you need to weigh more than 154lbs

Level 10

Summertime is coming up and bikini weather is upon us. You want to turn heads on the beach don’t you?

Level 11

Bigger is better! Have a breast operation

Level 17

There is a billionaire on vacation . . . You must catch his eye and his love! Good luck

However, I also have a problem with the way that the critiques of the game have largely focused on whether it provides poor “role models” for girls. For example, the Guardian quotes Bill Hibberd of Parentkind:

“Children’s innocence should be protected as far as possible. It depends on the background and mindset of the child but the danger is that after playing the game some will then aspire to have breast operations and take diet pills.”

Yes, that is one major issue with the game. But I am also – or even more – troubled by the way that the game objectifies and denigrates the women characters that kids are “taking care” of. OK, so they are not real. But it seems to me that the game teaches girls to look down on and ridicule other girls and women just as much as it teaches them to keep to a certain weight, or dress a certain way, or promotes plastic surgery.

More on Miss Bimbo from the feminist blogosphere:


Hoydon About Town


Virago Bites

Comments From You

JENNIFER DREW // Posted 25 March 2008 at 10:22 pm

I have a problem with all the reports concerning Miss Bimbo because apparently the game is aimed at ‘children.’ But the name of the game is Miss Bimbo and the character is female not MALE. So, obviously this game is aimed at girls not BOYS.

The makers claim it is a just a piece of fun and oh yes that claim is always made when it is about perpetuating a narrow male-defined stereotype of supposedly feminine behaviour. Of course the only way for an adult girl to get ahead is by denigrating other adult girls. Divide and conquer is the name of male supremacist ideas.

By the way when are the makers going to produe a game for boy children showing the boys how they can learn to enact misogynstic roles wherein women and girls are portrayed as sexualised commodities – I forget the game already exists and it is called Miss Bimbo!

Yunus Yakoub Islam // Posted 26 March 2008 at 7:37 am

The focus on childhood innocence by this site’s critics is almost twee. As Michael Rosen’s recent series on kids play on Radio 4 revealed (out of the mouths of children), primary-aged school children are increasingly in touch with teen culture. The reality is, preteen children are going to visit this site and some will play on it. The risk is not the loss of innocence, but the appalling representations of women it promotes. Are children’s organisations feminist-free zone?

Hayley // Posted 26 March 2008 at 10:49 am

I’d like to add a link to the More on Miss Bimbo from the feminist blogsphere:


Thanks guys keep up the great work!

Feminist Avatar // Posted 26 March 2008 at 2:33 pm

How is it promoting healthy eating if it is promoting weight loss and gain, depending on what work is available? A swinging weight is usually considered more damaging to your health than being consistently overweight. (I appreciate that there are bigger problems with the game than this, but if there going to make a claim then they should really stick to it).

mya // Posted 27 March 2008 at 5:28 pm

for fuck sake it a game no child-young teen is going to look into it that much. i mean we already have these role modles and this is just showing what they go through to look like that. i myself have played it and i think the only problem is you have to buy your own bimb. i say bring it back!!!

melissa // Posted 27 March 2008 at 7:37 pm

It’s just a game would you ban super models.

god, the movie bridget jones dairies didnt Renée Zellweger have to put on pounds for that role and she lost it all on pills then for number 2 put it on again. look in mags look in movies the game is showing what the world is like if you dont want you 9 year old going on the site then stop her do your job as a parent and look after you own child dont think your job is to shut down the site to look after all children cause thier is people who want to play the game.

whats next you gonna ban bebo just cause some kids killed themselfs or myspace its not your job to save everyones kids if you really wanna save lives, give money to the 3rd world theres children there that need help dont look into one site and think its worng theres porn and pro ana sites shut them down there bad for kids.

Harriet // Posted 27 March 2008 at 8:25 pm

Yes, the promoters are right, this game does reflect many aspects of real life. Unfortunately, the aspects which it reflects are those by which women are both encouraged to focus huge amounts of attention on looking ‘right’, and then criticised when they do. You could argue that women who diet, have breast augmentation etc are behaving in a perfectly rational way in the modern world, doing the things which we are told from a very young age make us desirable, attractive, ‘good women’. Unfortunately, they are simultaneously derided for it, labelled as brainless, vacuous ‘bimbos’. It’s utterly ridiculous.

Leigh Woosey // Posted 28 March 2008 at 9:31 am

Good Grief. I nearly dropped my tea when I saw this on the news yesterday. I think it is a good reminder of how important it is to provide the young females in our lives with positive role models to learn about and interact with (although my latest adventure in toy shopping highlighted a difficulty with this).

Even though she was bizarrely shaped, Lara Croft is a better option than these Bimbo dolls!

Gawd. Just had another look at their site-it boasts: “600 online players at the present time and 282 734 registered Bimbos!”. 300,000 kids. Never mind fretting about classification systems that parents can understand, parents need to be warning their kids about sexism and misogyny!

Leigh Woosey // Posted 28 March 2008 at 9:53 am

‘Mya’- While it is true that children are able to judge and decide for themselves how to respond to potential role models they are still susceptible to influence from sites that glamorise or normalise dieting behaviours or cosmetic alteration. By presenting weight/appearance change for the purposes of attracting male attention in a positive context, and rewarding it, the game makes it harder for young players to see what might be wrong with a society that fetishes bodies and demands that females in particular alter themselves for the approval of others. Just because there are plenty of other examples of so called ‘role models’ that have plastic surgery and promote quackery-based diets doesn’t mean that we should let these things pass without criticism, whether they are practiced by a supermodel or an online avatar. Re: ‘bring it back’; has the site been take down since yesterday?

Melissa- I wholly agree that it is the parent’s responsibility to protect their children from sites that might be dangerous or upsetting. My opinion is that parents can best do this preparing their children for what they might see on the web by explaining what sexism (or racism or exploitation etc) is early on so that children can recognise it and form their own responses to sites like ‘Miss Bimbo’.

Anna // Posted 28 March 2008 at 3:38 pm

I’d say this site is actually worse than pro-ana, having some experience with those sites myself – at least that requires a vague amount of looking for, they state clearly what they are; and they’re not being marketed as a game for *nine year olds*.

It’s not just the responsibility of the parents to watch what their child does on’t internet (though I’m not denying it IS a responsibility, and an important one), the site the child is accessing needs some sort of controls too.

bob bearcluf // Posted 22 May 2008 at 10:31 pm

It seems Margeret Thatcher plays Miss Bimbo -lol.

Link: http://www.vg-reloaded.com/modules/articles/2407.php

Ash // Posted 16 June 2008 at 12:51 pm

Has anyone commenting actually used the site, or visited the forums? The majority of players are adults and far from being “bimbos” many are professionals. I’m a 22 year old graduate, and consider myself a feminist, but also play the game. It is, as Nico says, a tongue-in-cheek look at the world. I don’t believe that it encourages children to diet or have plastic surgery, any more that GTA causes boys to become mass-murdering car thieves.

Laurel Dearing // Posted 14 July 2008 at 11:01 pm

most of the people on the sites are 20+ and the forums are actually quite sisterly and helpful towards less secure people. i feel the advice they give is nearly always quite well rounded and a good chance to voice more feminist views as food for thought.

in the “ideas” section there are a lot of requests including male members, excluding the breast surgery and having male bimbos.

it doesnt excuse the fact that its there in the 1st place and that you have to do this to get to the next level.

you dont “buy” your bimbo either. as for the dieting, i can honestly say its an addictive game and most people just see them as objectives and barely notice the ridiculous wording to them. however i suppose there will be some people that think more of it but they will be affected by everything on TV too and they possibly actively sought out this type of site.

the dressing is much for the individual. people cant leave negative responses or scores. in challenges the points are given for the cost of the outfits and the level and people still choose to put together things they like instead. however they also get ranked on attitude, LOT of which you get for the boob-job, which i think is wrong because i do not think it shows attitude or should be seen to.

but i have so never seen a 9 year old on there.

Laurel Dearing // Posted 14 July 2008 at 11:16 pm


its a good example of how any community where older women can help younger ones can make a huge difference. some people really are insecure enough to ask questions on sites with peers they dont know but would never ask such a thing on a medical site or one like this, and i daresay had she asked her friends the response wouldnt be as useful.

i hate these sections where people ask petty sex questions but now im older i can see they are people that could really need help and posting could make a lot of difference.

all the stuff you lean on sites like thefword seem really obvious once you hear them, like “you have the rights over your own body and a man is not deprived of something he deserves if he doesnt have sex”, but really when i was in school even though id agree, this type of wording that makes things so clear would never have occured to me

jess x // Posted 22 August 2008 at 8:24 am

i agree with ash. i have benn playing the game for a few months and have never met a player under 15 apart from myself. i doubt that anybody has remodled there life to be in acordance with an online fantacy game.i think you need to get over it and accept that tv stations usually like to over sensationalise things. good grief, its realy not worth almost spelling your tea over for!!

cats0303 // Posted 19 April 2009 at 12:13 pm

i am under 15 and i play this game. the influence it has on me is 0% and if the parents think its a bad idea, just dont let the kid go on it. people aren’t sheep, they think for themselves.

shannon // Posted 28 July 2009 at 8:22 pm

its harmless fun and they got rid of the diet pillss aswell anway i always play it everyday its something to keep ur kids occupied and i dont all of a sudden wear mini skirts and 8 inch heels and sleep with every guy i see, basicly become a bimbo, just because of a game???!!!!???

u guys are makin abig fuss ova nothingg

Stephanie Sue // Posted 17 October 2009 at 4:43 am

Gotta love it, if I didn’t see so many articles and shit talking about the site I never would have joined.

Congratulations for adding to the masses. And chill, it’s not that bad. No worse than the tons of other websites, tv shows, commercials, etc.

It’s called parenting, try it. If you don’t know what website’s your children are on than how much good are you doing? What are they going to find next? There’s plenty worse out there.

Lindsey // Posted 29 October 2009 at 8:58 pm

The average age of the Missbimbo player is 19.

The game is free, you don’t have to pay.

The youngest player I have met is 10 and 10 year olds don’t have accsess to the foums. You need to be 13 to use it.

If you honestly think teens are that impresionable you really don’t know much about teenagers. We are not all anorexics/bulimics and not all of us are on diets , we arn’t stupid enough to listen to the media

Its up to a parent to moniter their child on the internet.

And to the comment that said that the site is worse that pro ana sites –

Have you been on a pro ana site !

They give diet tips and encourage others to starve themselves. That doesn’t happen on missbimbo

Zoe // Posted 20 November 2009 at 9:42 pm

I’d agree strongly with the comment that Leigh Woosey made in response to mya. this game encourages an action to be taken (like bleaching your hair and styling it in a certain way) so that you are positively reaffirmed by a man. It is a game that supports the notion that you need to get money and be famous to win. I think its sad that it so popular and that its the only place for some women to open up about issues. I see this game as a big problem because it supports and encourages a sexist attitude that as women we should be trying to fight. Does anyone know if their has been any action in getting the site shut down?

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