Somewhere on the internet Barbie, Elsa, and Anna are BFFs. Disneycartoys is a mashup of doll, action figure, and play-doh "unboxing" videos which often break out of the unboxing genre and evolve into full-on crossfic narratives, featuring Barbie, the Disney princesses, and occasionally an effeminate Spiderman.
"Six Barbies, two cans of primer, two cans of Stone paint, four bags of feathers, less than half a yard of fabric, (a Dremel), miles of hot glue, and a shit-ton of patience." The result: Weeping Barbie Angels.
Collectors Weekly, a resource for vintage and antique collectors, examines the gender politics of the Easy-Bake Oven, the toy industry’s gender divide, and why ordinary things go pink. (Don't miss the Dumbest Products Made 'For Her' slideshow at the bottom of the "pink" article.)
Barbie Dance Club! (1989) Barbie and her friends dance their way through this 30-minute video of cheesy '80s goodness. Featuring Duane!
"This is a game in which a sentient closet-based AI locks four girls in a room (with giant metal barriers) because one of them smudged her make-up, and forces them to repeatedly apply lipstick and eyeliner to freakishly giant doll heads until he is satisfied. That’s not my arch interpretation of events. That’s what actually happens."
"You might remember artist Nickolay Lamm for his work removing doll's makeup to show that they looked just as lovely without that extra layer. Now, as promised, he's created a "normal"-sized Barbie, made to show us more realistic proportions of American women." (also via)
Jul!, a creative and delightfully disturbing animated advent calendar (some images possibly NSFW). Via.
Barbie Ma Muse Famous artworks recreated with Barbie. (NSFW - some nudity)
One of the more famous suppressed films of recent years is Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story, an early work by writer/director Todd Haynes (Safe, Velvet Goldmine, Far from Heaven). Filmed in 1987, the short film -- which relates the rise and fall of Karen Carpenter with a cast of Barbie dolls -- barely got a year's worth of festival time in 1989 before the twin iron boots of A&M Records and Richard Carpenter came down on Haynes.
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Barbie Trashes Her Dreamhouse is a series of photos of a Barbie-sized house, in which Barbie is a hoarder and the place is stuffed full of shopping bags, pizza boxes, newspapers, and other debris, all in realistic miniature form. It's the work of artist Carrie M. Becker, who has previously created somewhat neater scenes -- as well as some rather ominous. [more inside]
Some people have claimed that Barbie is really about giving girls the image of an empowered woman. There can be little doubt of empowerment when it comes to Black Moses Barbie - she fights for freedom and has all the coolest playsets and accessories.
Christmas and Toy Catalogs: 1942-1992 (Warning: heinousness inside). But wait, there's more vintage Christmas advertising.
A comparison between my two new cameras: The $1,800 Canon 7D versus the brand new $50 Barbie Video Girl... available in the girlie aisle of your local Toys R Us. [more inside]
Jack Ryan was a rocket scientist who invented BarbieTM, Hot WheelsTM, and a thousand other things but is often remembered for having a a manic need for sexual gratification that included a pleasure mansion and a marriage to Zsa Zsa Gabor.
Meet Barbie the Computer Engineer... Barbie, the favorite of little girls everywhere, has been a teenage fashion model, concert pianist, astronaut and even a Miss America. But now there’s a new Barbie, with glasses and a Bluetooth earpiece, and boasting of being a computer engineer. Oh... and five things to make her more realistic.
While US sales declined steadily in recent years, worldwide Barbie sales have been on the rise. So what better way to celebrate Barbie's 50th birthday and increase worldwide sales than by giving her her very own flagship store in Shanghai [Flash, sound]. [more inside]
Barbie vs Bratz: Mattel sues MGA, claiming the Bratz designs were created by a Mattel employee and smuggled to its rival.
Barbie Recalled. Mattel recalled one of their Barbie products today, a sweet little toy to teach kids responsibility called Barbie and Tanner. But watching that commercial closely one must wonder, if those magnets are coming out of Tanner so easily, surely they won't stay in your kid. Perhaps the design flaw had nothing to do with magnets but rather such an ill-conceived product. So, after Tanner poops out the magnet, you do what with it?
Surreal Barbie and Ken jewelry art by Margaux Lange. Previously (but her work and site have evolved since then). While in China, voodoo dolls have been banned and immediately became a jewelry/accessory craze.
Once there was a band called Aqua. You probably know their song Barbie Girl. Apparently, a lot of other people know the song, and like it enough to make videos of themselves lip-synching to it. A lot of people. [a lot more and heavy youtube linkage inside]
Barbarism begins with Barbie — the doll, that is. Research done at the University of Bath (UK) posits that prepubescents' pre-eminent plasticine plaything provokes disproportionate punishment. According to the study, which originally focused on the effects of branding on young consumers, the statuesque Mattel mini-miss seems to attract undue savagery. "The researchers had not intended to focus on Barbie, but they were taken aback by the rejection, hatred and violence she provoked when they asked the children about their feelings for the doll. Violence and torture against Barbie were repeatedly reported across age, school and gender. No other toy or brand name provoked such a negative response."
Barbie Pr0n. On this fine Sunday evening, I present to the fine folks of Metafilter the utter tastelessness, but strangely amusing images of Barbies doing the nasty. (NSFW)
Sure, Scarlett O'Hara Barbie is lovely, and yeah, Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz Barbie is cute, but for my money, it's hard to beat Marge Simpson Barbie, Medusa Barbie, or Dominatrix Barbie. The full collection, located here, clearly owes a debt to Todd Haynes, and the Barbie Liberation Army, but is still worth a chuckle.
Barbie and her friends now have blogs. Seeing this seriously made me consider hanging my hat and going home. They even have webcams, to do lists, and little photo galleries. The corporate giants are working hard to pull girls in to technology - which is a really good thing. Too bad the latest posts are about buying mini-skirts and things like that.
War Games? J.C. Penney, eToys and KB Toys all sell this scary "Military Forward Command Post with Two 12" Military Action Figures", despite the efforts of these shocked consumers who call it an "atrocity". It does sort of look like GI Joes taking over Barbie's bombed-out Dream House... how real is too real?
"If this were a sci-fi melodrama, it might be called Speech-Zilla meets Trademark Kong. ... The parties are advised to chill." (PDF file)
"If this were a sci-fi melodrama, it might be called Speech-Zilla meets Trademark Kong. ... The parties are advised to chill." (PDF file) The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit is at it again. Aqua's hit song "Barbie Girl" is judged not to be a violation of Mattel's trademark, but to be a parody protected by free speech. And all laboured judgely joshing aside, the decision offers a nice summary of trademark law. Get a plain HTML news story from CNN here. (The chorus is running through your brain now, right? And it's going to be there all day, too. *snicker*)
Barbie creator, Mattel founder Handler dies More than one billion Barbies have been sold in 150 countries and has inspired love from girls everywhere and pure hatred from feminists everywhere. "The impossibly well-endowed doll -- her original figure would be about 39-18-33 if she were human -- has infuriated feminists, inspired artists and intrigued academics around the world. Barbie even was placed in the official "America's Time Capsule" buried in 1976." Can you think of any other toy who has brought about as much ferver as Barbie???
Multiethnic Barbie. (picture) ""It would be really boring if there were all white people," says the fourth-grader, who also likes her dolls to portray people she knows - from her half-Asian cousins to classmates of all races." Of course, nobody she knows probably has Barbie's proportions...
Barbie's Hot! Though they claim they have no interest in mass production, I can say right now that I'd buy this Barbie. Woo!
When Barbie meets ballet...? Mattel are shelling out £85,000 to sponsor the ENO's traditional Christmas run of the Nutcracker, which coincidentally starts just as Barbie in the Nutcracker hits the cinemas. A good way to "interest young girls in the ballet", or a head-on crash between two questionable influences on their body image? (more inside...)
Ken, of Barbie and Ken has turned 40. To mark the occasion, Mattel is releasing a hot, young, 20 year old secretary, that Ken is having an affair with, and a Porsche 911. (to complete the whole midlife crisis thing you see.)
A triumph for art and free speech over commercialism. Or something like that. A photographer can't be prevented (by Mattel) from shooting pornographically posed Barbie dolls and selling the pictures as post cards. I wonder what they looked like. Hey, hot mama! (Courtesy of Firing Squad)
Waah! I want my Barbie PC! (I don't quite understand this; can't someone just put their own decals on their computer? What, exactly was the market here? This one seems to go into the "unbelievably stupid product concept" file.)
Buy your kid a new doll you cheap bastards! - Apparently barbie dolls and other plastic toys made in the 1950's have recently been found to secrete a sticky chemical film that could cause developmental problems in children.
This is just sick and wrong. Convention Barbie? Do you really want to support a party with lame merchandising tie-ins like this? Sidenote: does this make Bush pro-Mattel and anti-Matt L?
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