Bill’s best: Doll’s world

Originally published Oct. 28, 2005, in the Cape Cod Times

It’s a doll world, after all


Before Brad and Jen split, before the rumors of a Nick and Jessica breakup, there was the news that rocked Hollywood (or at least the playgrounds of Hollywood): Barbie dumped Ken.

With her never-changing figure and his perpetual smile, they seemed like they were meant to grow old together. Not that anyone would ever guess they were old, since Barbie and Ken are ideal candidates for plastic surgery.

They met in 1961, when she looked very grown up for a 2-year-old, and stayed together through Barbie ’s exciting career explorations: Olympic skier, ballerina, astronaut, doctor, rock star, cowgirl, presidential candidate.

But in February 2004, Mattel publicist Russell Arons made a stunning announcement: Barbie and Ken “feel it’s time to spend some quality time – apart.” In standard Hollywood spin control, he assured worried fans that the two “will remain friends.”

Before long, Barbie was linked to Blaine, a surfer from Australia.

Then came word from Mattel last week that Ken planned to undergo a makeover in order to win back the doll of his dreams.

“Ken was looking a little pale,” celeb stylist Phillip Bloch told Mattel.

“He should possibly consider eyelid surgery,” chimed in Steve Altese of Us Weekly magazine. “The Ken I know hasn’t blinked in 20 years. I’m a little concerned. Maybe he could have just one eye worked on, so he can wink at Barbie.”

Good ol’ Ken or saucy Aussie Blaine? Or maybe it’s time for a fresh start with someone else?

What’s a girl’s icon to do?

We were able to sneak a quick peek at Barbie’s diary, where she’s made a list of suitors and considered the pros and cons of the most-eligible bachelors in the toy world.


Pro: He’s a known quantity. That can be kind of comforting.

Con: He’s a known quantity. That can be kind of boring.


Pro: He’s Australian, which is exotic. Well, a little bit exotic.

Con: He’s really nothing more than Ken with a funny accent.

GI Joe

Pro: There’s something irresistible about the strong, silent type. He’s away a lot on top-secret missions, which gives me some time to myself for shopping and hanging out with Midge and the girls.

Con: His beard is scratchy. He’s away a lot on top-secret missions. What’s with all those secrets?

Power Rangers

Pro: I’d have someone to practice my gymnastics with.

Con: With those helmets, I can’t tell them apart. Is the green one a guy? And there’s no way I’m going to start wearing a helmet. Just think what it would do to my hair.


Pro: He’s famous. He’s funny. Kids love him, so I bet he’d be a great dad.

Con: There’s that annoying voice, and he’s always begging to be tickled. Plus he’s so fuzzy. Maybe some body waxing would help him.

Bob the Builder

Pro: He’d be a handy guy to have around whenever the dollhouse needs repairs.

Con: There’s no way I’m moving to Bobsville. And if he picked me up for a date in Travis the Tractor, I think I’d cry.

Superman action figure

Pro: Duh. He’s Superman. He’s faster than a speeding bullet, so he’d never be late for a date.

Con: That whole on-and-off-and-on-and-off thing with Lois Lane is such a mess. Frankly, I don’t think he’s ready to commit.

Eminem action figure

Pro: He’s rich. He’s cute. He’s popular.

Con: He’s got a potty mouth.

Han Solo action figure

Pro: He comes from a galaxy far, far away, so I’ll hardly ever have to deal with the in-laws.

Con: He smells like Chewbacca.