Image Map

Saturday 9 June 2012

Mad Men Barbie Dolls (contains spoilers!)

During one of my regular bouts of insomnia last night, I came across an interesting item online from The Huffington Post about New York photographer Michael Williams, who has taken the original Mad Men Barbie dolls (bizarrely launched in 2010 to help promote the show) and added a series 5 twist. If you didn't see the originals, here they are:

Being a huge Mad Men fan, these intrigued me. Upon closer inspection however, I felt the need for shouty capitals saying WTF?!! a lot, because for some reason Mattel thought it'd be a good idea to take the character of Joan- stunning and curvaceous redhead, played by Christina Hendricks, (above bottom left) and trim her down to the physically impossible traditional Barbie measurements. Seriously, WTF?!! The whole point of Joanie is that she's a buxom Marilyn Monroe type that turns heads everywhere she goes (actually kind of like the photo of the barbie in the green dress, above), in no way the same look as Betty Draper, pictured above top right. I do appreciate the fact that they gave her a haughty expression and her gold pen necklace though- actual attention to detail. As for Betty, she's pretty spot on really. Betty basically is a real life Barbie doll- the perfect housewife with model good looks, living in the suburbs with a gorgeous husband, perfect kids and slowly dying inside. Great outfit and hair too. And no, I don't know what's happening with Don. It looks like Mattel were trying to make a "Serial Killer Ken" doll and that's what they came up with. Roger Sterling isn't bad but then neither of them have glasses of whiskey or cigarettes as accessories, which isn't that surprising given that these are Barbie dolls but it does make it that bit less convincing.
So fast forward two years and this photographer has taken some of the dolls and updated them for the current series (which if you haven't seen yet, look away now):

The Joan Harris doll comes complete with illegitimate b*****d carriage, the fur coat Roger Sterling gave her and Emerald necklace of shame (poor Joanie). Fat Betty Francis comes with Inhalable whipped cream can, Weight Watchers Scales and two sundaes with ice cream scoop (she's a bit of a wagon but also, poor Betty). Megan Draper, Don's new wife comes with a microphone for serenading Don with her rendition of "Zou Bisou Bisou", Howard Johnson's famous Orange Sherbet and an audition script. Sally Draper gets a pink princess phone for clandestine calls with Glen Bishop (that little creep), her Family tree diagram, the New York Post with the Chicago Nurses Murder story on the front cover, a bottle of sleeping pills and a pre-fat Betty Draper Barbie doll (seriously, poor Betty).
Now that's what I call attention to detail. Williams has held back his Don doll and won't reveal it until the last episode airs stateside (come on already!!) but I'm sure it'll be as tongue in cheek as his other creations.

No comments:

Post a Comment