The Dark Herald Does Not Recommend Barbie 

The Dark Herald Does Not Recommend Barbie 

Barbie started life as a call girl. 

No, I’m not joking about that. Meet Bild Lilli: 

Her Bild Magazine comic strip was rather worryingly popular in post-war West Germany. Enough so that she inspired a rather evil looking collectable doll.  

Now in fairness to the Germans, the doll was meant as a gag-gift. However, Mattel executive Ruth Handler saw something more in her than that. How boys play with their action figures is a lot different than how girls play with their dolls.   

At eleven inches tall, Lilli was exactly the right size for a little girl to grab around the waist, lift one inch off the ground and shake slightly while she talks to other toys about going to a party, or a boy she likes, or what a bitch Jennifer is. 

Handler knew there was something there that could be incredibly profitable. 

Lilli’s sharp Aryan features and elongated neck were retained but her hairline was lowered as well as her eyebrows and her smile became less predatory. A one-off prototype was ordered from the  Japanese factory that had been making Lilli. After a note was shot off to the Japanese saying, ‘No, Barbie is not to have Lilli’s visible, fully colored nipples in the future,’ a decades long money-making machine was fired up.  

The Barbie herself doesn’t make any real money at all. The dolls are pretty much produced at cost.  Where Mattel makes bank has always been in accessories. Dresses, dreamhouses, lots and lots of shoes. That kind of thing. Barbie has been Mattel’s cash cow since 1959, albeit with a slight detour in the 1980s. When He-Man started outselling Barbie. The Barbie division of the company insisted on producing a girl version called She-Ra and promptly sank the entire Masters of the Universe line of toys.  

Mattel has now found something new to wreck. They are under the impression that Barbie will spark a cinematic universe franchise. It won’t, but the payout has been so big on this first movie there will undoubtedly be a sequel. No matter how badly the movie crashes on the second weekend, it made a profit on its first weekend simply because the budget was kept within the bounds of sanity. 

Which brings us to the movie itself. 

There has never been a more misandrist heap of shit than Barbie. For that matter it is profoundly woman hating as well. 

This celluloid stain is purest third wave feminist bullshit . A piece of propaganda created with a view toward warping the minds of little girls into being solipsistic failures at womanhood before they get anywhere near puberty. 

The film starts with an homage to 2001: A Space Odessey. A bunch of ragged colorless little girls are pushing around their baby dolls in dull colored strollers. Then they come upon the giant, monolithic form of a Barbie. The little girls immediately start smashing their baby dolls, prefacing lives that will pursue a childless, shallow, materialistic existence where they will be passing out at night rather than going to sleep, can’t remember their body count and trying to hang on to their twenties well into their late fifties.  

And failing. 

Welcome to Barbieland where everything is a headache inducing bright pink. It is a feminist paradise. The Barbies have literally all the careers. Doctors, Lawyers, Astronauts, mailmen, the Barbies do it all. The Kens exist solely for the pleasure and validation of the Barbies. That’s all they do. They have no function in their society whatsoever except as drones. The Kens do absolutely nothing. The Barbies view them as an irrelevant accessory no different from another pair of shoes. Truth be told the Kens are kind of retarded and useless. 

One day Barbie Prime starts to develop flaws like flat feet and cellulite on her upper thighs and other normal woman stuff.  

Okay, just roll with the bullshit explanation here; Barbieland is only a reflection of the real world, and the Barbies are affected by how their real world owners play with them… or something. 

So, Barbie Prime needs to go find her owner. She sets off on her quest. However, Ken played stowaway and Barbie’s reaction to being stuck with her… I can’t call him a boyfriend… Her reaction to her Ken is about the same as setting off on your family vacation and finding out that the cat had hid itself under the car seat. That is honestly how Ken is treated. Not as a person but as a pet. 

So, Barbie and Ken arrive in Real World where she is confronted by THE PATRIARCHY. 

I’m not sure this actually qualifies as the real world because in PATRIARCHY world Barbies are treated just like the Barbies treat the Kens. In the middle of a crowded boardwalk, one guy walks up to Barbie and slaps her on the ass with the man who is obviously her boyfriend standing beside her. Ken does nothing, Barbie knocks him out. But that is how ridiculous this movie’s view of men is. If a guy is retarded drunk off his ass, maybe he’ll try something like that, but he’s still going to get pounded. This was utterly ludicrous.  

Anyway, Barbie finds her revolting activist owner, that I think we’re supposed to like and don’t. 

Ken on the other hand discovers that he loves being treated as someone of worth and brings the PATRIARCHY to Barbieland. The Kens instantly seize power from all of the self-empowered you go grrl Barbies.  


The Barbies are both superwomen and victims all at the same time. Because feminism.  

Barbie tricks the Kens into fighting each other, which they do and their eternal frat party ends. They immediately slip back into their meaningless irrelevance and the Barbies rule all of Barbieland with an iron bejeweled accessorized fist again. 

In case I didn’t make it clear, this thing is Woke AF. This was the movie where they had a Trans is playing a Barbie, I thought I spotted who it was but that turned out to be Kate McKinnon.

Was there anything I liked?

I will admit the jokes landed, I wasn’t so annoyed with movie that I didn’t laugh. Greta Gerwig can deliver a comedy scene. That said, I shudder for Netflix Narnia. Whatever she does to Lucy and Susan it’s going to be awful.

This first weekend has been epic box office and Warner Brothers for the first time in a long time has something to crow about. Even if Barbie falls off a cliff next weekend, as I think it will, Warner can still call it win because this flick was not some $250 million budget monster. This was probably about $125 million with another $100 million in marketing, so Warner will be in the black as soon as it crosses the $400 million mark. And I’m pretty sure it will get that far.

Mattel on the other hand is worried sick. And rightfully so. They’ve bet the company on this movie. 

He-Man had been on the rise again until Netflix He-Man sank the entire brand. 

The Barbie brand had been declining for years but suddenly shot up again during the lock-down. Mostly due to parents buying their little girls some toys.  


The problem is this, the current batch of Mattel executives are products of the same business schools that produced Allissa Heinerscheid of Budlight fame. They were totally onboard with Woke Barbie until the Black Swans started to land and suddenly someone realized, “Oh my Gawd, this movie is designed to appeal to a demographic famous for not having any children.” They are reportedly chewing their fingernails to the bone. So far as Mattel is concerned, it does not matter how big the movie is if Barbie is a sunk brand.

The real heroes here were David Zaslav’s new marketing team who realized how big a disaster they were courting and constructed a campaign around burying the movie’s feminism as deeply as it could. The problem was no one had bothered to tell the actors who happily babbled on about how super empowering and uber feminist Barbie is. Which is how we found out in advance how bad it was. 

However, the whisper network wasn’t be up and running on Barbie before Friday, thus granting Warner Brother’s its first box office win in a long time. 

The direction is competent, the comedy lands but the messages are so insidious I have to break my Recommends Rule. Which is that ‘there has to be no reason at all to see a movie before I declare it a hard pass. Barbie is the worst kind of propaganda. The kind that doesn’t even know it is propaganda. The people that made this movie live so deep in their bubble that they can’t see what it really is.


The Dark Herald Does Not Recommend Barbie

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