Barbie Blunders That Caused A Commotion In The Toy Aisle

List Rules
Vote up the controversies that caused pink panic in the toy aisle.

The statuesque icon of the toy aisle has influenced millions of girls, but sometimes it wasn't always in the right way. Teen pregnancies, sexism in the workplace, racial slurs, and possible eating disorders are just a few of the scandals that have plagued Barbie and her friends over the years. Here are just a few that got our attention.


  • 1
    203 VOTES

    The 'Barbie: I Can Be a Computer Engineer' Book Had Barbie Spread Viruses And Require The Help Of Men Engineers

    In 2010, Mattel released a book titled Barbie: I Can Be a Computer Engineer meant to inspire young girls to dive into typically male-dominated careers. But sadly, they missed the mark - by millions of miles.

    In the book, Barbie accidentally spreads a computer virus and needs the assistance of her male coworkers to fix the issue. Hardly the inspirational move parents were hoping for.  

    In addition to Barbie not being great at her profession, she was prone to saying things like,

    "I'm only creating the design ideas," Barbie says, laughing. "I'll need Steven's and Brian's help to turn it into a real game."

    "Hi, guys," says Barbie. "I tried to send you my designs, but I ended up crashing my laptop - and Skipper's, too! I need to get back the lost files and repair both of our laptops."

    Mattel later apologized for the sexist book that made the former model, astronaut, server, teacher, and dancer appear incompetent. 

     

  • 2
    199 VOTES

    A Barbie Was Once Sold With A Diet Book Including The Message, 'Don't Eat'

    In 1965, "Slumber Party Barbie" was released for little girls to play being a teenager. She came with pink pajamas and a robe, a scale, and a book, which stated "How to Lose Weight" and "Don't Eat." This Barbie was also underweight, as the scale indicated the 5'9" woman was only 110 pounds.

    Nowadays, Pajama Barbie has ditched the body dysmorphia, turning in her scale and book for facial cream and a mug of hot cocoa. 

     

  • 3
    197 VOTES

    'Share-a-Smile Becky' Used A Wheelchair That Couldn't Fit Into Barbie's Dreamhouse, Car, Or Bus

    In 1997, Mattel released "Share-a-Smile Becky," a Barbie companion who was in a wheelchair. Though well-intentioned, the doll created controversy when it was pointed out the Barbie Dreamhouse was not wheelchair accessible. In fact, she couldn't fit through the door

    In addition to being on the outside looking in, she also had an issue with her hair getting caught in her wheelchair.

     

  • 4
    180 VOTES

    Mattel Unknowingly Named A Barbie With Derogatory Terms

    As part of a partnership with Nabisco, Mattel releases food-oriented Barbies to help their food-based friends promote their products to their audience. So, when Mattel and Nabisco released an African American Barbie named "Oreo Barbie" and her salty counterpart, "Cracker Barbie," it's safe to say the companies were probably unaware of the fact both were derogatory terms.

    But their audience sure did notice. The dolls were quickly pulled from the market.

     

  • 5
    155 VOTES

    'Growing Up Skipper' Had Breasts That Would Grow If You Pumped Her Arm

    'Growing Up Skipper' Had Breasts That Would Grow If You Pumped Her Arm
    Video: YouTube

    In 1974, Barbie's "sister" Skipper tried to appeal to the preteen audience who was going through puberty by "blossoming" at will.

    "Growing Up Skipper" featured the ability to grow breasts when her arm was pumped, transitioning from girl to teen right before young eyes.

     

  • 6
    134 VOTES

    'Teen Talk' Barbie Was Considered A Bad Role Model For Girls

    "Math class is tough."

    Much to the chagrin of many parents, this talking doll spouted sayings that were far from inspirational. Thanks to the uproar, the doll was "fixed," no long talking about her difficulties in geometry.