Can we talk about how AMAZINGLY this show handles the twins’ relationship, and gender in general?
Mabel loves plenty of traditionally feminine things like bright colors, sleep overs, knitting, crafts, and is boy crazy. (But yet she’s not a damsel in distress pushover, nor is she a screeching, nagging jerk, which seem to be the most common roles for women in cartoons).
Dipper thinks a lot of the things his sister does are weird or “gross”, he often scoffs at her “girly” things.
Mabel is the tough one, not Dipper. Dipper is much more of a “wuss” than his sister, and readily admits it. Dipper likes some girly music. Mabel finds a lot of gross things cool, while Dipper is disgusted by them.
In other words, THEY FEEL REAL.
Too often a girl in cartoons has to either ADORE all things girly, or be repulsed by them (the media’s idea of a “tomboy”). This is absolute nonsense. Girls can have a variety of interests which can include both traditionally feminine and masculine things. Mabel manages to be something of a “girly girl” while still having all these AWESOME non-traditional traits about her. She’s complex. Like a real girl her age might be.
Dipper on the other hand is very much an adventurer. He manages to be wimpy at times without coming off as an unlikeable stereotype of one. He has his weak moments and his strong moments. He’s probably the less dominant of the twins, and he’s definitely the more emotionally sensitive one. He has some interests which are non-traditional, and so what? It’s not treated as weird or played for laughs (except in one episode where Dipper is made to feel ashamed for not fitting the traditional role of “manly man”, and the show handles it wonderfully, by letting Dipper come to realize that being a man is so much more than being violent or aggressive).
And while they still have their definite differences, as a brother and sister will naturally have, they still share many interests as well! They’re often playing games and sharing inside jokes. The idea that boys and girls “play too differently” doesn’t occur to these two when they’re having a great time with the one person who has always been there beside them.