So it turns out that Barbie, the iconic toy, has a new Palm Beach edition coming OUT (get it?) and among them is her friend Ken. Sugar Daddy Ken. Here he is, in his
Okay, technically, Mattel has called the new doll "Sugar's Daddy Ken" (Sugar being, I suppose, the dog.)
The doll is sold for $81.99 which means it's pretty much for collectors. And while I have to admit that it's pretty GAY GAY GAY, it does make me think.
Why not? Why shouldn't there be the "Gay" Ken doll? Just like kids have always been able to pretend that their leather jacketed, two-toned hair Ken and their muscle-bound G.I. Joe doll were having a Happily-Ever-After romance, I suppose kids could pretend that Sugar's Daddy Ken is... um... a meterosexual. A very swankily dressed, tanned straight guy, in love with Barbie. Not with her wardrobe. Or with her hair. With Barbie.
While it's fun to come up with ideas for what the next Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender and Queer Ken and Barbie dolls might be, (Dykes On Bikes Barbie, anyone?) I wonder if these kinds of iconic pieces of plastic reinforce stereotypes that we might be better off without.
At least Sugar's Daddy Ken doesn't have custom bendable wrists.
Does being "included" in this way - as an iconic child's toy that screams "GAY!" - move us forward, or backwards? What do you think?