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The History of BARBIE Is Weirder and Darker Than You Think

Welcome back, Bizarros, to another episode of The Dark Side! This week, Andrew Bowser and Jessica Chobot are exploring the dark and weird history behind everyone’s favorite doll: Barbie! On the surface, Barbie has it all—cool careers, a supportive husband, and a closet packed with more outfits than any person could ask for. But her history is a little darker than the pink packaging and the bright Barbie Dream House might suggest.

Barbie’s creators, Ruth Handler and Jack Ryan, would often fight about who actually came up with the idea for Barbie in the first place—things got pretty vicious in that regard, in fact. And furthermore, Handler’s potential inspiration for Barbie was a bit more adult-oriented than you might guess.

In addition to Barbie’s strange origins, there have been some odd Barbie dolls throughout the years. Like “Slumber Party Barbie,” who came with a book that was about how to lose weight, with one of the covers reading, “Don’t Eat!” There was Barbie’s pregnant friend Midge, whose stomach detached and held a small baby inside .And who can forget “Haunted Ghost Beauty” Barbie? But freakiest of all was “Hello Barbie,” which recorded the words of kids who played with her, sent them to a media company, which they could then use to push new data back through Barbie.

So it turns out that Barbie’s closet might have as many skeletons as it does shoes. But what do you bizarros think? Did you play with Barbies as a kid? Or were you a He-Man fan like Bowser? Let’s discuss!

Featured Image: Mattel

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