Five Failed Barbie Concepts

  • Grindhouse Barbie: Cool concept, but hard to fit into a pantsuit.

    Woodstock Barbie: Proposed in 1994 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Woodstock, the roll-out for this edition was to include a pink flower-power themed VW microbus. The doll was axed due to alleged licensing issues surrounding the Woodstock trademark, but rumors circulating at the time suggested that authorities had found a “sizable” bag of weed in the VW’s glove compartment.

  • Muscle Madness Barbie: Also known in some circles as ‘Roid Rage Barbie, this Barbie represents the most dramatic departure from the standard skinny waist and buxom chest that most collectors associate with the plastic fashionista. Though seven prototypes were produced by placing Barbie’s head on various Ken bodies, the idea was eventually scrapped when the US Senate escalated its investigation into the use of performance enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball.
  • Grindhouse Barbie (pictured): With the 2007 release of Grindhouse came plans for a down-and-dirty version of Barbie based on the film’s iconic heroine, Cherry. Oddly, this version of Barbie tested poorly among the target demographic not because she was missing a leg, but because children found it difficult to slip Barbie’s fashions over the machine gun.
  • Lock ‘n’ Load Barbie: When Sarah Palin was tapped to be John McCain’s running mate in 2008, Mattel jumped right on the bandwagon with this brunette version of Barbie, which came with stylish glasses, a plaid hunting jacket and cap, a rifle, and a fake-fur bear carcass. Plans for the doll were scrapped, however, with the election of Barack Obama.
  • Midlife Crisis Barbie: Although Barbie’s 50th birthday has come and gone, rumors continue to circulate that a Barbie with crow’s feet and a sagging neck is in the works. Though Mattel has not commented on this matter, the National Association of Cosmetic Surgeons is gearing up for a massive boycott. “If it’s okay for Barbie to get older, then what does that say to women throughout the world?” said one surgeon on the condition of anonymity. “That aging is natural? That laugh lines are no big deal? Please!”

The Big Scoop: Mattel Recalls Pooping Barbie Dog

Though Ernestine may not be getting a pony for Christmas, there’s a distinct possibility that she’ll find a pooping dog under the tree this year:

The only problem is that the Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported that a small magnet in Barbie’s pooper scooper could come loose and pose a choking hazard to small children, thus forcing Mattel to recall the doll, her dog, and his magnetic poop.

What’s especially amazing about the recall is that the CPSC estimated that about 683,000 of the play sets were in circulation at the time — which means that someone at Mattel gave the go-ahead on the pooping dog toy and had over half-million of them made. What’s even more amazing is that the CPSC reports three incidents of the magnet coming loose — which means that three people actually bought Barbie’s fake pooping dog.*

Photo courtesy of Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The good news, however, is that the problem has since been rectified. According to the CPSC, the recall only involves “Barbie and Tanner™ play sets — model numbers J9472 and J9560. The toys include a ‘scooper’ accessory with a magnetic end. Recalled scoopers have a visible, silver colored, disc-shaped magnet on the end of the scooper.” Fortunately, the report goes on to explain that “Scoopers with a white material covering the magnet and products manufactured after January 31, 2007 are not recalled.”

One additional thing that’s worth noting, however, is that the CPSC has not said a word about the psychological damage this toy might cause as a result of glamorizing poop scooping. Needless to say, we’ve all heard countless experts tell us that Barbie’s unrealistic proportions have a tendency to give young children odd ideas about what women’s bodies should look like — thus leading to everything from eating disorders to plastic surgery fetishes.

Along similar lines, it’s not hard to imagine a world in the not too distant future where kids everywhere start to stake out dog parks for a chance to scoop some strange dog’s poop. Why? Because they saw Barbie doing it. Is this future we want for America? More to the point, is this the future we want for our kids? I, for one, don’t think so. But I don’t have any better ideas for Ernestine’s Christmas gift, so it’ll just have to do.

* Yes, this post is just an excuse for me to write “poop” a lot.

Pulitzer Prize!

While we’re on the subject of awards, here’s some incredibly lowbrow toilet humor that’s bound to appeal to literary types:

  • First, as grandiosely as possible, say, “Did I tell you about my Pulitzer Prize?”
  • Wait for someone to say, “No! Please, tell me about your Pulitzer Prize!”
  • Hold out your index finger.
  • Say, “Pull it!”
  • When the person pulls your finger, fart proudly and say, “Surprise!”

To ensure maximum impact, eat plenty of beans and raw vegetables an hour before attempting this joke.