On Thursday, the world learned that Barbie was a Bowie fan.
With the release of a doll disguised as Ziggy Stardust, David Bowie's other ego, Mattel declared that she was celebrating the 50th anniversary of "Space Oddity". published in 1969.
The new Barbie doll wears a tight fitting metallic 'space suit', red platform boots and silver earrings adorned with dangling stars. Her dark red hair is smoothed back like those of Ziggy Stardust, and daubed on his forehead is the circle of gold that he wore. His nails are painted black.
This is a particularly androgynous look for a doll that embodies the stereotypes of the female appearance in its first iterations. In recent years, however, representations of male celebrities are not reserved for Ken. Over the last decade, Barbie has dressed like Andy Warhol, Elvis and Frank Sinatra.
Bowie was known for his sexual style and sexual fluidity, and Ziggy Stardust was one of the most memorable experiences. He debuted in 1972 with the album "The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars".
The author Christopher Sandford wrote in his 1998 Biography, Bowie: Loving the Alien, that the alter ego was not just disguised. In an interview in 1972, Bowie asked American critics to call him Ziggy, who eventually admitted that the character was taking his personality.
Bowie, who died at the age of 69 in 2016, described Ziggy as a rock star who communicates with extraterrestrial beings in the context of an upcoming apocalypse on Earth. Ziggy's last public appearance took place at a concert in 1973, filmed and broadcast as a documentary a few years later.
The typical Barbie is for young children, but this doll – which costs $ 50 – is for adults. Children who grow up in 2019 may not be Bowie fans, and adults are not your typical doll customers, but on social networks, some have had the idea of making the Ziggy doll their first. Barbie.
The first Barbie was published in 1959 and since then it has always been controversial. Back in the 1950s, critics worried that she was too well done. Barbie was later criticized for teaching girls unrealistic standards of beauty and not representing people of color.
During the six decades of the doll's existence, there has been a cascade of Barbies representing different races, occupations, corporal forms and phenomena of pop culture. There is a Barbie who is a robotics engineer, an astronaut, a pilot and a political candidate. There is a Barbie representing Frida Kahlo; Katherine Johnson, the mathematician described in the movie "Hidden Figures"; and Ibtihaj Muhammad, the first American athlete to compete in the Olympic Games under the hijab.
One would expect the Ziggy doll to be the first Barbie to have extraterrestrial relationships, but this is not the case. In 2012, Mattel released the first Empress of the Aliens doll, wearing metal armor and a skirt of "reptilian textures."