The saga of Barbie and Ken isn't exactly the Song of Solomon. For one thing, the Mattel match is made of plastic. For another, Mattel probably doesn't mean for the couple to teach us a lesson about God's prevailing love. Yet Barbie and Ken remain the power couple of toys, ranking right up there with Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, thanks to Toy Story 3.
Barbie and Ken publicly "broke up" in 2004, when Mattel, faced with competition from dolls such as Bratz, was looking for media attention. Barbie sales have improved since then. Now, Mattel has launched a campaign to put Ken and Barbie back in the spotlight through social media, and on Valentine's Day, the couple got back together, and their love "is red-hot once again."
"Barbie and I are destined to be together, don't you think?" Ken tweeted earlier this month. He signed up on Match.com (see video) and dedicated a cupcake to Barbie in New York City. Mattel plastered Ken's message to Barbie ("Barbie, I know we're plastic but our love is real") on billboards in major cities. Aside from expressing confusion on her ownTwitter feed, Barbie so far has been passive in the campaign. You can vote on how Barbie should respond at BarbieandKen.com or on Facebook.
Ken has remained a part of Barbie's story for 50 years, almost as long as Barbie has held a place in pop culture. Barbie has been just fine without him, navigating a career as a politician, doctor, teacher, coach, chef, astronaut, singer, race car driver, and dancer (and all without aging). She also dated an Australian surfer named Blaine. So the question has been raised: Does Barbie really need Ken back?
In my opinion, it's the wrong question.
In Barbie's world, everything is about Barbie. She's a woman defined by her accessories. Her ...1
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