She’s got pink hair, high heels, leopard-skin leggings, a heart-and-crossbones logo on her shirt, tattoos, and goes by the name of Barbie.
She's also the centerpiece of the Tokidoki x Mattel collaboration, which this month released a limited edition of the iconic doll that is probably the funkiest version yet in her 52-year history. Called Tokidoki Barbie, it sells for $50 and is an homage to Tokidoki, the Italian-based, Japanese-inspired brand, and also features a related collection of women's clothing and accessories.
At $50 a pop, Barbie’s latest makeover is aimed at Barbie and Tokidoki collectors more than kids, but it's already got some parents' knickers in a twist, according to the UK's Daily Mail.
One commenter on the Ms. Twixt website, which is designed for the parents of tween girls to share and virtually shake their heads, wrote, “Encouraging children that tattoos are cool is wrong, wrong, wrong. Mattel why not put a cigarette and a beer bottle in her hand while you're at it!”
Another said, “I think it is horrible and sends the wrong message to young people,” the Mail notes. “In no way should a tattoo be honored.”
To be fair, there were parents with tattoos who were offended by everyone getting so annoyed. And there were parents who just thought it was OK for Barbie to be more realistic, contemporary — and fashionable, as this and other Barbie Style collaborations are promoting.
Over the decades, the most consistent complaint about Barbie is her unrealistic body shape that would fit into the category of anorexia if her relative measurements were put on a grown woman. And this isn’t the first time Barbie has gotten into trouble for tattoo art.
The Mail points out that 1999’s Butterfly Art Barbie was pulled from the shelves when enough parents complained. And a decade later marked the introduction of Totally Stylin' Tattoos Barbie, which had removable sticker tattoos. This time, Mattel didn’t pull the doll off the shelves when people complained.
One thing that probably didn’t excite parents this time around, also, is that the fanged cactus-coated pet that accompanies Barbie, in collectible vinyl figure style, is named Bastardino.
Tempest in a teacup? Weigh in below.