Alright, enough…this has gone just a little too far. To some, it’s a people-interest insignificant story making ‘moms’ feel good about their bad parenting skills – to others, it’s a slap in the face of the phenomenon that generates a multi-billion dollar industry. It’s the average-sized fashion doll (don’t use ‘average Barbie’, because Barbie is anything but average, puddings) and it has caused quite a whoop-dee-doo on morning television across the planet underscoring yet another unfortunate fact about today’s media: their lack of research and poor credibility based on irresponsible journalism. “Why hasn’t this been done before?” the surprisingly thin ‘mom’ host on ABC News flutters. It has, you stupid amateur…many times. Don’t you read your own archives, you twit?
Maxie – easily an Imposter of Barbie, but one that did have more realistic body proportions, though she wasn’t really known for that. Maxie and her TV Cartoon were created to make up for Jem’s failure, but Mattel’s Jazzie bitch-slapped Maxie into Hasbro Hell – she’s a ‘Vintage Toy’ now…a Vintage Toy with the name of a feminine hygiene product.
Happy To Be Me – With a name like that, why would you want to be you?
Barbie – yeah, her. She even changed her body type in 1997 to reflect more modern ideas about fashion and the female body. But it’s still about the fit of her clothes…you cannot deny that when dressed, Barbie has much more realism than anyone would give her credit.
Emme – erroneously called a Barbie by the press (stupidity and lack of research AGAIN) – a collectible made to simply be a larger size body based on a beautiful celebrity, giving fashion doll collectors diversity in body, and paving the way for Effie in Dreamgirls. Well, and it didn’t hurt that the Toy Fair press saw her as a challenger to Barbie – so Tonner just ran with it. There’s no such thing as bad publicity, right?
As director of marketing in 2002, I even paraphrased The New York Post’s slam of the Emme doll by quoting the one line that made Emme news, “hottest product launched this week at the American International Toy Fair ’. Am I smart, or what? And how bizarre someone in the press was actually defending Barbie? From the evolution of the 17inch vinyl doll incarnation to the 16.5inch hard plastic variant, Emme actually sold. What eventually killed this doll line was lack of body articulation, which fashion doll collectors crave. There were plans to make a 12inch version, and prototypes were created, but don’t even go there when it comes to the private fortune you need to market such a toy – and body size doesn’t even matter.
Ella Enchanted – Tonner didn’t specifically create a message with his first venture into mass-produced dolls targeted to children based on the popular Anne Hathaway star vehicle, but he did conscientiously create a body that was faithful to a teenage girl – and considering he IS a doll designer and sculptor with loads of experience, this what you need to be studying Mr. Lamm.
Mimi – OK, I’m stretching it now…but hey, give the old girl her due, OK?
For the non-doll people reading this blog, let’s make one thing clear. Barbie is Barbie – as in the Barbie made by Mattel. It is not a generic term used for ‘fashion doll’ which is clearly explained here. Using ‘Barbie’ as a common noun in such a lazy manner is along the lines of calling all carbonated beverages ‘Coke’, copy machines ‘Xerox’, or facial tissue ‘Kleenex’. You don’t use G.I. Joe to describe all the action figures out there, you sexist pigs, so why slap that label on Barbie? Barbara Millicent Roberts, aka ‘Barbie’ is a name…not a description.
Ultimately, all of these dolls failed because they just didn’t comb the cotton, so to speak. Dolls need to be fabulous, and unlike this douche who wrote, “Lammily, with her smiling face and cool clothes, hopes to compete with Barbie for the affections of young girls, and judging by her versatile outfits, fun hobbies, and awesome attitude, we have faith that she’ll be a hit.” – Yeah, Ellyn – we’ll see about that. Got any other earth-shattering predictions to impart? We’re all ears…
So get a clue, Nickolay – you’re some attention-starved kid who’s looking to get a name on the back of Barbie – and oddly perfect in your timing. If you truly want your ‘Activist’ doll to be something, try getting a clue about doll design (articulation comes to mind), show some respect for Barbie (without her, your doll would just be some other piece of plastic amongst the sea of toys competing for children’s attention), and get her some style sense; because right now, your lack of glam is highlighting the LAME with a capital ‘L’ in Lammily. If being average is your goal, then at least try to ascend an average level.
Dear, there’s no accounting for taste, nor is there any likely excuse for lacking thereof.