Barbie is 55 this year. Ew. To celebrate this occasion, I believe some Barbie bashing is in order.
The iconic doll has been in the news lately due to the creation of the new “Lammily” doll that is a more realistic version of Barbie. Lammily’s body proportions are based off a 19-year-old girl’s physique, with stouter legs, a broader stomach, and a neck that could actually support a head. When asked about the unrealistic measurements in a recent interview, Kim Culmone, one of Barbie’s lead designers bashed this new doll, because it’s not
Very clever. Be that guy and raise the philosophical question, “Well, what exactly IS normal?” Ugh. We get it. It’s 100000 billion percent impossible to create a doll that pleases everyone. We come in all shapes and sizes…
Some people are squares.
Like Barbie, for example.
But wait a second guys… did you know that you can be something BEYOND your jeans size? I’d like a Barbie who comes from the lower/middle class, one that can’t afford to wear the most extravagant clothes out there, one that works three jobs, one that looks tired. That would be a real Barbie. Because Barbie can be anything she wants to be, right? So who says she has to be successful and popular? Maybe she just wants to stay at home and NOT go out clubbing with Ken? Give her messy hair, worn clothes, a beat up car, student loans…
Make Barbie look realistic? No. Make Barbie BE realistic. Make her a relatable, real person. This doll has such a huge impact on young girls. Not just body image, but overall attitudes about life. No more bull about being a pink-suited astronaut. No. When would that ever happen? I’m pretty sure the suits don’t come in pink. (See what I did there? THAT’S called being realistic.)
If Barbie wants to be an astronaut, cool, whatever. But I want to get to know her! What did she do in high school? What college did she attend? Let’s have a doll version of her OCD dorm roommate, or her least favorite professor! I could go on and on…
Toys like Barbie should tell a story. Real ones. Not just fairytales.