Ghost Mom of Plasticville

From the "Plasticville U.S.A." series by Bachmann Brothers, a snap-together model kit of a 50's ranch home. These kits were aimed primarily at N and HO model train enthusiasts. As these modelers were overwhelmingly male, this tableau is of interest for its highly gendered view of suburban life. Mom and the daughters stay home--presumably away from where the trains are--the girls remaining under the bay window surveillance of their indistinct, almost ghostly mother. The kit itself features two plastic people--"Mom" in the same red dress and "Dad" in pants and shirt. Materially present in the kit, father here has vanished from the picture, no doubt down at the railroad crossing with his son. Mom, meanwhile, takes up her position as the symbolic center of the home--watching and being watched through the "picture" window.

Popular Posts