There are some toys out there that are just plain disturbing.
This is one of them.
Okay. Process that picture for a sec.
If you're my age, you'll remember Alfred Hitchcock's movie "The Birds." It was pretty freaky.
If you've not seen the movie, let me fill ya in. Essentially it's about what would happen if every bird on the planet got pissed off and decided to take it out on humankind. So you've got these dive-bombing seagulls, playgrounds haunted by menacing crows, and a great reason why phone booths should still exist.
Bird bomb-shelter circa 1963; we may need these in the future...
The film was made in 1963 by master director Alfred Hitchcock. It was nominated for an Academy Award for its special effects-which for the time were pretty sweet, though they look dated now. It was also nominated for an Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Picture.
It's a damn fine film, though a bit cheesy.
When I first saw it, I just kind'a stared. What?
And it's real! This is a real toy! The "Birds Barbie."
Here, Wendy! Have a doll with its eyes getting clawed out by birds! Merry Christmas!!!!!
Now that I'm done freaking out and can type again, I'll give you a little info about my past.
My Mom was an avid doll collector (a specialist on certain types, actually-published and everything). When I was but a wee lad we had dolls EVERYWHERE. Glass cases adorned many rooms in the house; all had little plastic or bisque prisoners encased in them. Staring at us. Always staring.
Try enjoying a Thanksgiving dinner with roughly eight million little eyes staring at you.
Between that and the plethora of creepy clown paintings, you can get a pretty good picture of why I'm so messed up.
Amongst all of these dolls were Barbies. Lots and lots of Barbies. From all eras. I learned more about these things than I ever wanted to know.
So I can honestly say that I know that there are some odd Barbies out there. Star Trek Barbie and Ken, for example.
Boldly going where no Barbie has gone before...
With the advent of the "Bird's Barbie" I have to wonder exactly how far they'll go.
I'll hazard a few guesses, with the disclaimer that I'm writing this as satire-so calm down Mattel. And if you want any of the ideas, go for it. I might actually buy a few of these. And before the e-mails pour in: I know. I'm twisted and disturbed (and lucky to have a girlfriend that can put up with me):
1. Road Kill Barbie: Her leg is separate from her body and coated with whatever our current PC environment allows to pass for blood (probably something green). She has a residual tire print across her little tummy. I'm sure they can find a movie tie-in somewhere. That's what focus groups are for.
2. Psycho Barbie: Following in the tradition of "The Birds" Barbie... A Barbie in a shower with stab wounds. Nothing says kid's toy like stab wounds, right?
Either that or we can consider that all Barbie's ARE psycho. I mean, look at that figure. You can't get that from working out. You have to binge and purge, baby!
3. Brain Tumor Barbie: Use your imagination. That should be enough.
4. Coke Binge Barbie: Pretty much just a regular Barbie doll-but with white paint flakes under its nose. This could explain the weight/figure issue addressed above.
It comes with batteries to make it twitch.
5. Inside-Out Barbie: Again, use your imagination. Organs on the OUTSIDE. I might actually buy this...
6. Chest-burster Barbie: You remember the scenes in the "Alien" movies where the nasty critter erupts from some hapless victim's chest?
This could either be battery operated or have a switch on the back of the doll that you would push forward to have the alien break through her rib-cage. I suppose that would be a budgeting and marketing issue...
I think six examples have made my point.
The "Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds Barbie" is just a disturbing idea for a toy. It's cool and all... If you're a Barbie enthusiast, I couldn't recommend it more.
And perhaps that's the target audience: collectors.
But for that one kid who haphazardly picks this thing up... I dunno. Unless she's got that Goth-Winona Ryder in Beetlejuice thing going. Then... well, I guess I'd just keep a close eye on that kid.
You can find this item at Amazon.com.
For you Barbie fans, other unbelievable but real Barbies are Kinky Barbie. and Pooper Scooper Barbie.