The iconic Barbie doll has been around for ages. For years, she embodied what a typical caucasian woman would look like. However, all of that has to change along with the world. More than a year ago, Mattel gave Barbie a total makeover and released a number of new looks, including different skin tones. This is to make the world’s favorite doll more inclusive and diverse.
For the past five decades, the Ken doll has been overshadowed by Barbie. The male version of the play doll did not get any updates on looks until now as Mattel introduces 15 new looks for the Ken doll.
The new Ken dolls come in various forms and shapes. There is the original build, a slim version, and a more muscular broad build. Furthermore, Mattel will also add a few skin colors and hairstyles to make the doll more appealing to today’s children.
According to Mattel, this effort was done to make the line of children’s toys more diverse. Also, the company would like to appeal to today’s generation of kids where they spend most of their time using gadgets like iPads and iPhones.
Lost in translation
On the flip side of it, I rather think that Mattel somehow forgot what a real man should look like. I get it, the company likes to be more inclusive of every people. It wants its dolls to represent the vast majority of the population in order to appeal to the society in general.
I get it, majority of women would prefer a nicely built man, with chiseled looks, muscular body, and ripped abs. Some women also prefer men with a beard rather than a clean shaven one. That is normal. That is how most women are programmed. However, this may stem from early education and upbringing as many psychologist would say.
According to a study by Neave and Shields back in 2008, women think of men with a full beard are more mature and more masculine. To most, this is the tipping point. However, for some reason, Mattel has forgotten to include this one too.
If Mattel wants to be totally inclusive, I think it should also include what a typical man would look like. And what does a typical man looked like you ask? Simple. You only need to look at your dads and you will know what I’m talking about.
Nowadays, a typical dad will have a slightly bigger, if not huge at all, beer belly. Also, most dads nowadays will sport a tattoo or two. Perhaps even more. As for the attire, I think a jersey paired with a pair of basketball shorts with matching pair of Jordans will be quite fitting.
I believe Mattel should start thinking about educating the children with what a typical person would look like and not with what it thinks they should be. This is done in the hopes of changing the perception the general population into thinking that it does not matter how you look like in life. The only thing that matters is your personality and how you present yourself in the best light possible.