I read a news story this morning about a new line of Barbie Dolls that are being released called the “Barbie Basic Collection.” Each of the Barbies in this line is wearing a little black dress. Apparently, one of the Barbies is creating a bit of controversy because she is showing too much cleavage and many people, moms in the story that I read, think it is inappropriate for Barbie to show so much cleavage. They contend that this particular doll was designed to mimic the look of having breast implants. If I may, I’d like to offer a bit of objective commentary on this issue: It’s a doll. The end.
I have a four year old daughter, Gracie, who has numerous Barbies that share her toybox (and floor) with dolls of varying sizes and shapes. Most of them are naked, their clothes usually stripped within minutes of removing them from the packaging. By the way, when did it become necessary for me to have to have a fully-stocked Snap-On tool box just to remove a toy from its packaging? Having to use a pair of wire cutters and a screwdriver just to open a Star Wars Millennium Falcon that Santa Claus brought can really suck the joy right out of a Christmas morning. Trust me on that. Geez Louise! Anyway, take a glance into my daughter’s room and you might think that one of the bad guy G.I. Joe action figures had set off some sort of explosive device which blew the clothes off of all the dolls. The toy pig remains clothed in full princess regalia while the princess lies naked among the carnage. Good thing, I suppose, since princesses tend to be a bit diva-ish and probably don’t take too kindly to their royal clothing being worn by a common farm animal. Go figure. Anyway, I don’t ask questions. It’s not a big deal in my mind if one Barbie had breast implants or another one had liposuction on her thighs along with some lip-fattening toxin injected into her face and it doesn’t appear to be a big deal to Gracie either. They’re toys and she is keenly aware of that. They ride upside down in strollers, have conversations with friends on toy phones, and make death-defying leaps from towel-racks high above the bathtub into mere inches of water. They’ve driven pink Corvettes off of kitchen counters and walked away unscathed. Naked, but unscathed.
With all the problems that exist in the world today…war, terrorism, crime, unemployment, stock market crashes, liberalism (had to throw that in for some of my “progressive” friends)…I have to say that a big-boobed-Barbie ain’t one of ’em! Some may say that this Barbie will cause Gracie to have unrealistic expectations about what women should look like. That if she grows up and doesn’t have the “perfect” body, whatever that is, that it will somehow be because my wife and I were bad parents and let her play with “Implant Barbie.” I don’t buy that. I grew up in a time when every boy had toy guns that looked real. We fought countless wars and had more shootouts than I could ever count. I always had a BB gun close by and even got lucky and shot a few mocking birds over the years. Those games and toys so influenced my life that today, as an adult, I don’t even own a gun. I don’t have a problem with guns at all. I’ve just never really needed one. Not yet. I have been thinking of getting one, though. Times have changed and the world that I knew as a child has become a much more dangerous one. I mean, have you seen a Barbie Doll lately?
Ive seen the new dolls. They are clearly designed with the collector in mind. Not little girls. There is nothing flashy about any of them. Its a doll in a black dress with boring hair. And um hello, Barbie's boobs are plastic and would measure 52 inches in real life. Is a discussion on how "fake" they look even necessary? I have two girls who i have bought countless barbies for, and I can tell you this…when presented with the option of glitter tattoo barbie with the hair that changes in water and the snap on mermaid fins that light up or Black Dress Barbie, glitter tattoo is going to win every time! Barbie puts out collector's editions of their dolls all the time. Seriously, I do not understand why there is all of the fuss right now? Where were these super-mom-protectors-of-self-esteem when barbie released any of the dolls in the "cabaret" series. They were stripper dolls. Fishnets and all! And if you want to get all technical ..why don't these moms also point out that barbie may be influencing our kids not to ever finish what they start. I mean really.. barbie can't finish out her career as a vet before she runs off to be a rock star? How dedicated to being a teacher can she possibly be if she can't hang up the fairy wings? And Im not even going to discuss what soccer must be doing to her career as a ballerina! They should change her name to ADHD Barbie. I do not expect an eleven inch piece of plastic to be a role model for my kids and if for some odd reason i did, I wouldn't pick one who can't keep a job and has obvious commitment issues ( she's been dating a gay man for 50 years!)But I DON"T expect Barbie to be a role model. Like you said.. its a TOY. Im not worried about my girls having an unhealthy body image because of Barbie's hip to waist ratio. They no more think she is a realistic depiction of a woman than they believe Mister Potato head is a realistic representation of starchy vegetables.I fully support "Boob Job" Barbie. ( and also Sugar Daddy Ken – yes really. ..look it up.)
LOL! Funny! That's two comments in the last couple of weeks! Welcome back!
This comment was sent to me by a friend who was having some technical difficulties so I'm posting it for her:Well, Thad, I must say that the Barbie boob issue falls flat. She is, and always has been, a doll. And, yes, she has a body that, if it were real, would pose some really significant problems for her. I am much more worried about pictures of live women to which our daughters are exposed. So Barbie can be an astronaut or a poster doll for cosmetic surgery for all I care. Most of them spend so much time naked, as you note, that I think girls are oblivious to their boobs by now. By the way, Rebecca says that she loves her Barbies — she has several collector dolls (the Wizard of Oz series) and tons of mermaid, fairy, princess, teacher, vet, marine biologist, gymnast, and ice-skating Barbies. And don't get me started on the Kelly and Tommy dolls in that closet. She even has a Ken or three. She thinks, and I agree, that she is just fine despite having been exposed to Barbie and her boobs. P.S. My sister had the Skipper who, when you wound her arm, grew boobs. No lie. 😉
That Skipper doll was also known as Dream Girl, right?
I like your commentary at the beginning the best. I think I posted something similar on another site: It's a Doll. The End.My daughters will not grow into pole-dancing sluts with body image issues and porn stilettos because of the dollies they might own. I swear these ninny-mommies need to find something legitimate to cry about and leave the hot collector barbies out of it. Love the blog- ~Amy; Mom to four children unscathed by the emotional impact of toys.
Thanks for your comment and for reading! I don't know how I haven't yet climbed a tower with a rifle and just started shooting. GI Joes with guns and tanks and six-pack abs. Poor me. Someone probably owes me a check of some sort.
Haha! Yes, I was the only girl of six kids – so I don't know why I'm not hanging REAL barbie girls from staircases and setting bigger, badder things on fire. My GI Joe's were hand-me-downs, and I did blow things up and kill Cobra over and over with them…so if you do climb a tower with a rifle someday, let me know. I'm a great shot thanks to my toys! 😀
HA! I will be sure and keep you informed!
OH OH OH , I got it, I got it, I got it – Less Lady Gaga, more Barbie!!! Really, with all that is wrong with the world, a dolls boobs were in the news. There is soooo much to write on this, that I cant do it for fear of blowing a gasket.