Finally! A Barbie that channels all our adolescent angst has become a part of the "it" crowd. While the younger burgeoning scenester in us is ironically fuming due to our underground role models going mainstream, the wise woman in us is proud. Mattel's Monster High dolls — a.k.a Goth Barbies — have built themselves a Burton-esque empire complete with books, web episodes, and a message of equality. Cathy Cline, Mattel's VP of marketing, said "The message about the brand is really to celebrate your own freaky flaws, especially as bullying has become such a hot topic."
These Barbies are the Gareth Pughs to Barbie's Carolina Herrera — equally stylish, but with a penchant for monsters, ghouls, and Manic Panic. In just three years, Monster High has become a billion dollar brand, appealing to young . Mattel's street team noticed more and more girls experimenting with darker fashion, and with the massive success of Twilight, a horror-themed Barbie was inevitable.
Monster High girls advocate embracing differences, and being uniquely you — something that's more important than the latest pink cadillac or a toy-poodle. Their success lies in their aspirational anti-bullying message, a trend Gerrick Johnson, a toy analyst, believed works for Barbie, too. He says, "Barbie works because she's aspirational. Girls want to be like Barbie." Do they, though? The declining sales of the brand don't allude to that. Plus, with all the recent articles concerning the Barbie body, the reality of becoming the doll seems a lot scarier than becoming a super-cool "monster". (NPR)
Photo: Courtesy of Mattel.