Archive for Barbie

Geek Girls Triumphant

Well, the crazy wild news on the general geekery front is all about, believe it or not, Barbie. Mattel had an online vote recently to determine what Barbie’s newest “career” would be — and the vote went pretty overwhelmingly for “computer engineer.” They unveiled the new doll yesterday:

I’ve heard a few positive and negative reviews so far. First, a lot of people are jazzed because it’s a nice little shot of respect for a career that doesn’t often get a lot of respect. It’s also seen as something that could encourage more girls to pursue computer careers.

What are the complaints? I’ve read some folks who feel there should be a bit more nod to computer geekery — one person I read suggested that the new Barbie’s clothing choices should come from someplace like ThinkGeek. It’s not a bad complaint, but I’d just recently read about a study that found that women who were exposed to the more geek-oriented stereotypes about computer sciences were much less interested in computer careers than those who weren’t. So maybe a less-geeky Barbie would actually be more encouraging than an especially geeky one…

Another complaint had to do with that laptop. Glittery pink? Really? I don’t know anyone who owns a pink laptop, or who would want to own a pink laptop. It’s one of those dumb marketing things you see from time to time — “Oh, girls like pink stuff, right? Let’s sell a pink laptop and the little ladies will buy ’em!” That kind of thinking gets companies selling pink power tools, pink handguns, pink musical instruments. And most people, male or female, don’t want that stuff. They look freakin’ ridiculous, and who wants to look that goofy?

And the other complaint I heard was about the glasses. Part of it is just: Why buy into the “nerds wear glasses” stereotype? There are plenty of computer folks out there who don’t wear glasses, or who wear contact lenses. On the other hand, it’s been a while since anyone really believed the “guys don’t make passes at girls who wear glasses” bulldada, so it’s not exactly a bad thing either.

So what do you think? Good news for geek girls, or bad news for everyone?

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Friday Night Non-Fights: Plastic Punishment!

Dagnabit, Bahlactus has gone and called for a one-week break in Friday Night Fights. So that means no fisticuffs and face-wounding for you today. Instead, we have to go with some non-fight-related activities. Don’t complain — all those who complain, burn at the touch of… never mind, that sentence just can’t end well. Instead, we’ll just dive into our nonviolent activities for the evening.


Ugh. That’s… That’s a comic cover with photos of plastic dolls. And they’ve gone shopping. That’s gotta be the worst, most horrible thing I’ve ever posted here.

Regular Friday Night Fights will resume next Friday. Let’s hope we can all survive the Scourge of Evil Plastic Barbie ’til then…

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Please be warned: Crazy people who really need to get a proper hobby have decreed that the Black Canary version of Barbie is “filth.”

“Barbie has always been on the tarty side and this is taking it too far,” the Christian Voice is quoted as saying by the tabloid The Sun. “A children’s doll in sexually suggestive clothing is irresponsible — it’s filth.”

In true tabloid fashion, The Sun’s headline reads, “S&M Barbie is lashed by the public.”

I think the following points should be noted:

1. Black Canary actually wears more clothing than Wonder Woman, which I guess means these people think Wondy is a filthy tramp.

2. Black Canary has worn the same general costume as the doll wears since her first appearance in the comics back in 1947.

3. Black Canary actually wears more clothing than the original Barbie back in 1959, which I guess means these people think the original Barbie was also a filthy tramp.

4. Depressingly, these people probably really do think Wonder Woman and Barbie are filthy tramps.

Heck, these are folks who think arctic-weight winter parkas are insufficiently modest, and who will say so, repeatedly and loudly, every time someone points a TV camera at them…

The “Christian Voice” should spend more time working to feed the hungry, nurture the sick, and comfort the afflicted, and a heck of a lot less time moralizing pointlessly about superhero costumes.

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