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Posted by / 09-Jun-2017 16:19

Taller girls dating shorter guys

He can be complicated, mysterious—maybe even vegan. There will be an “original”-size Ken with cornrows. It’s an intriguing idea, nestled in a snake pit of complications.What about the modern man necessitates a Ken do-over? How does a corporation select the shades of brown it will use to represent black people? Mattel was willing to entertain my questions, asked with a Barbie’s confidence, but it wasn’t about to send me unreleased dolls in the mail.Behind the security desk is a floor-to-ceiling photo, blown up several hundred percent, of Ruth and Elliot Handler, the deceased toy-making couple who co-founded Mattel.These two are everywhere in the design center—and this photo in particular forces a doll’s terrifying perspective on visitors.“Because guys use toilets different from girls.” Over time, Ken has been depicted as a rapping rocker (Rappin’ Rockin’ Ken), a doctor (Dr.Ken), and a sovereign of the Crystal Caves (King of the Crystal Caves Ken), but that is what he is reduced to: someone who uses the toilet in a mysterious way.Ken is the first man—or, technically, eunuch—many little girls will ever see nude.Consequently, he teaches young ladies that men are meant to have bodies like Olympic water-polo players.

It is Mattel’s version of the Wonka factory, and, accordingly, every outsider is treated with suspicion.For decades, he achieved icon status by being a basic, buff, blue-eyed bro. Even if you never played with Ken, his tiny footfall has reverberated through your life; he charges in early in the formative years of the fairer sex, setting an impossible standard for males against which you will be judged forever. Starting today, as part of a wide-ranging relaunch, Ken has cornrows. Over the years, he has blossomed into a sculpted, perma-tanned icon of American masculinity.Boys—even boys who like Barbie—don’t care about him.“In the past,” says Michael Shore, “Ken was really viewed as more of an accessory in Barbie’s world, to support the narrative of whatever was happening with the girls.” Ken was arm candy, a proponent of Barbie’s endeavors, a complement at a ratio of about 1:7.Or at least that’s how sales worked over the years—kids own one Ken for every seven Barbies.

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Starting now, Mattel is re-imagining the all-American guy. Mattel has spent the better part of six decades teaching children that Barbie and Ken are white; that Barbie and Ken are sculpted like Hellenistic statues, only pornier, despite lacking genitals; that Barbie and Ken have friends—that some of their best imaginary friends are black—but that at the end of the day those friends are not quite A-list superstars like Barbie and Ken. Millennial moms declared Barbie out of sync with their values.