In 1997, the song Barbie Girl, by the Danish group Aqua, was a huge hit. But the lyrics and video, which ran endlessly on MTV, didn’t go over well with Barbie-maker Mattel. The song was actually a scathing critique of Barbie, painting the brand as materialistic and anti-feminist. The band was hit with a lawsuit that didn’t end until 2002, when a judge told all parties to “chill”. But this year, Barbie has pulled an about-face and embraced the song, even making its own video with some slightly toned down lyrics. (“You can brush my hair / Undress me everywhere,” becomes “You can be a star / No matter who you are”.) The song is now being used to promote a new Barbie line due out this spring.
It's a Barbie world
Barbie embraces a song it once tried to silence
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