Diapers and Dragons

Friday, October 9, 2009

Just Watch Them Come After Me Too: Mocking Mattel

Oh. My. Word.

My post this morning is brought to you courtesy of Barbie (TM), already queen of plastic and now apparently queen of hypocrisy. You've heard me rant mildly before about Barbie and the warped view of the female form she perpetuates, but this is about something else.

For those of you around and paying attention to mainstream music back in the mid-90s, you may remember the song "Barbie Girl" by Aqua that came out in 1997. And perhaps you remember the tantrum that Mattel threw about the song, saying that it was an unauthorized use of the product name for commercial use and that it portrayed women as sex objects (HA! Because Mattel never has been guilty of that). In fact, Mattel won the suit, which is why you  no longer hear that song played.

Well, that and because it's the kind of bubblegum pop song that doesn't last long on the airwaves as it is.

Anywho, this morning as I was hoping in vain for Nick (the kid's channel, not a person) to stop playing commercials and actually show "Max and Ruby" for The Widget's delight, I witnessed a commercial for Barbie that had my jaw dropping faster than Barbie's boobs would if she looked her age.

(She's 50, y'all. There's a reason we call boob jobs "plastic surgery." And I think I mentioned she's the queen of plastic.)

The commercial showed a teenish Barbie (who are they kidding?!?!) skating along to a tune that sounded AMAZINGLY like "Barbie Girl," with some slight tweaks to the lyrics. And without the male backups.

I did a quick search just to make sure I wasn't mistaken, and look: it's true! (You can even see the commercial over there--check it out and compare to the YouTube link of "Barbie Girl" above!)

Why am I writing this post? I'm not really sure, other than this is simple confirmation of what I've suspected about Mattel all along: they'll do and say anything as long as they think it will make them a buck. They've been quick to sue over perceived slights to the Barbie image, and just as quick to use the same slights to their advantage. Goodness knows they make sure we can't avoid their product in every store and on every remotely kiddish channel.

God forbid we don't fill our little girls' worlds with Pepto-Barbie fuschia.

I had other ideas for posts today, and maybe I still will, but I had to address this burning issue while it was hot pink.

You're welcome.

4 bits of love:

Heidi said...

It's in moments like these that I'm glad I have a boy and not a girl. I liked the song back in the day BECAUSE it was so dodgy and satirical...the fact that Mattel has stolen it and are sexualizing it in an "okay" (ha!) way is appalling.


A Teacher said...

You see I've been spoiled. Someone mentions "Barbie Girl" and I immediately think "Disney Girl" which is totally different and in my humble but deadly accurate opinion infinitely better.


Stone Fox said...

OMG!! no seriously, OMG!!! i SAW that commercial, and i thought it was aqua's barbie girl song. my thoughts: hmph, didn't barbie sue that band?!!

i, too, think barbie is a terrible role model for body image. i mean, yeah thanks for making her have more career options than either stewardess or fashion model, but come on. giving her real proportions is just as important.

Draft Queen said...

I love hypocrites. Really, I do.

(Thank goodness the girl is out of the Barbie stage.)

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