Sunday, October 29, 2006

Female Archetypes

Today Osler's Razor posted about a little girl in cheerleading garb waving around her Barbie dolls at a football game and had a link to this article citing Barbie's controversial nature. If Barbie has been controversial from her inception, there is nothing new about this considering the fragile self-esteem of the children playing with her. The ideal female body changes with time and varies among cultures as can be seen from the marked differences between Rubens's models and Kate Moss. As I was pondering Barbie and the hotly contested healthiness of her proportions, it occurred to me that she bears a striking resemblence to a fertility totem. Albeit this, to us, is far more aesthetically pleasing

than this (an actual fertility totem):

In my search for pictures of a more modern Barbie, I ran across the picture below. She has apparently be updated to have more realistic proportions, but I'm thinking that this isn't just a whole hell of a lot healthier for little girls:

What were they thinking? Egad! Put the boobs and the hips back on her and give the poor doll some clothes before her little plastic bits are exposed for the world to see. It's bad enough never being able to find both of your shoes! I need to see Lawyer Barbie in a really bitching power suit or at least a college Barbie who is wearing something other than a cheerleading outfit.

Moving on to the Bratz dolls, which I'm seeing more of in Walmart than Barbie these days, we're still having problems here, I think. Behold:

At this point, I'm going to just listing:

  1. Their lips scare the hell out of me.
  2. They have that lollipop head thing going on that is so common with anorexia patients. I have to say though, I'm a little more comfortable with this proportion problem, because their feet are also overlarge and so it's more cartoon-y, less, you could look like this if you starved hard enough.
  3. They're called Bratz. 'Nuff said.
  4. Some of their outfits are a little CFM for me.

Kudos though on a less severe body-type overall and on a little more diversity. We can do better though:

This is a MyScene doll. And aside from the purple metallic lips, she looks pretty normal! Those are normal-ish clothes, and fully acceptable proportions. Make-up is still a little hooker-ish, but I've been accused of doing my make-up like a drag queen's more than once, so I'll go with it. This outfit notwithstanding, I think we're on the right path here.


Ann said...

All these disturbing photos make me want to hug my Sock Monkey.

OsoDelSol said...

I think Sock Monkeys are a far more acceptable plaything overall.

I still want one, btw! ;-P

Angela said...

"hug a monkey, hug him tight, hug him till you feel alright." - poko, '06
(um. do you guys have poko?) no one ever hugs a barbie till they feel alright.
her body always fascinated/scared me, especially how her knees bent backwards, and the way you stabbed her diamond ring into that big hole in her hand. yikes.