James Frey Official Website
Join the JAMES FREY mailing list


from The Times South Africa

Barbie’s midlife crisis

NEW YORK – She doesn’t have a streak of grey hair, her breasts remain unnaturally perky, and she has endless outfits – but Barbie is feeling miserable ahead of her 50th birthday.

Not only is she accused of promoting anorexia among young girls, but her sales plunged 21 percent in the last quarter of 2008, and for seven years she has had to deal with Bratz, a sassy rival hot on her high heels.

Born Barbara Millicent Robert on March 9, 1959 in Willows, Wisconsin, the 29-centimetre (11.4-inch) beauty wowed the world when she made her debut at a New York toy fair, leading to sales of 300,000 that same year.

With her long legs, love of pink-tinged glamour, and hair made for combing, she was a world away from the baby-like creatures cradled by girls of previous generations.

Today she is at the centre of the Mattel company empire. She has inspired dozens of fashion designers, become a presence on Facebook and MySpace, revolutionised playtime for young children – and forced untold numbers of reluctant parents to reach for their wallets.

New York Fashion Week this month will fete her 50th with real-life leggy models.

[ click to continue reading ]

Posted on February 7, 2009 by Editor

Filed under Culture Music Art | | No Comments »