Pregnant Midge doll...does this upset you? - U2 Feedback

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Old 02-02-2003, 02:06 PM   #1
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Pregnant Midge doll...does this upset you?

I honestly can't see why anyone would have a problem with this, especially because "Midge" is supposed to be married! With some of the other things kids see and play with today, this seems pretty harmless. I don't think a 5 year old thinks "hey, she's had a baby out of wedlock, I am going to do the same thing!"

Any comments?

Midge a blessed event for retailers
Barbie's pregnant friend a hit here American stores pull doll from shelves

Barbie's best friend Midge is having a baby, and Canadian girls are throwing a shower.

Mattel's new pregnant doll, pulled from the shelves of U.S. Wal-Mart stores in December after it was deemed offensive by a vocal group of consumers there, is winning popularity contests in Canada, selling for about $29.99 at Wal-Mart, Sears, Zellers and Toys R Us.

Though some local stores have just begun stocking the doll in the last two weeks, many are already sold out of pregnant Midge, and moms and kids seem to be celebrating the new addition to the family.

"I'm going to buy it," said Jane King, spotted yesterday shopping for her daughter Laura Wheeler's 5th birthday present at the Wal-Mart in Dufferin Mall.

"My daughter always likes pretending she's a little mom and imitating me in every way, so we'll see how this goes over," she said, tucking the box on to the lap of her youngest child, a toddler in a stroller.

Midge, available with either a white or black skin colour, comes in a gift set that includes baby accessories. She wears a purple maternity shirt over her swollen stomach. A wedding ring encircles her finger. Her belly is removable, and inside, a tiny baby it's a girl! rests in a curled up position.

"It's one of the most popular Barbies right now," said Sara Mackenzie, an associate at a downtown Toys R Us, where the dolls are currently out of stock.

The store, at Yonge and Dundas Sts., received 36 pregnant Midges in November and is awaiting another shipment next week. In fact, the dolls are out of stock at Toys R Us stores across the province, said another sales associate after scanning an inventory databank.

"Moms think it's a really great idea," Mackenzie explained, adding that she's spotted many pregnant women purchasing the doll, perhaps intending to use it to help explain the science of baby making. As well, she sees girls as young as 6 asking to add pregnant Midge to their collections.

"It's a modern thing," said Mackenzie. "Kids are learning about pregnancy a lot younger, so it's acceptable now. And it's something different."

Still, just as consumers in the U.S. protested pregnant Midge because they'd always thought of her as Barbie's single friend and were offended by the idea that she might be having a child out of wedlock, not everybody here is celebrating Midge's big news.

"It's kind of promoting kids having kids," says Janetta Wong, 15, who was scanning the Barbie aisle at Toys R Us.

And Carmelia Maiato, a mother of two daughters found strolling the doll aisle at Wal-Mart, says she wouldn't buy Midge for her 5-year-old.

"For me, I don't think (pregnant Midge) is right for the kids. It's not like (my daughter) doesn't know what pregnancy is, but it's something a mother talks about. A Barbie can't talk about it."

Even though some think Midge, Barbie's best friend since 1963, is single, she was actually married 12 years ago and already has a son named Ryan with her husband who's named Alan, says Mattel spokesperson Julia Jensen.

After the outrage in the United States, Mattel made a point of repackaging pregnant Midge more clearly as a member of a family and issued a statement emphasizing Midge's marital status.

Pregnant Midge arrived in Canada without complaint.

Canadian Wal-Mart spokesperson Andrew Pelletier says it's not surprising shoppers here haven't objected to the doll as they did south of the border.

"In Canada, it's been a popular item. Canada is not the U.S. We are different. We have a different climate, different fashion sense. We are proud we are distinct."

Controversy isn't new to Barbie and her friends, notes Karen Caviale, publisher and editor of Barbie Bazaar, a Wisconsin-based magazine that serves adult collectors of Barbie dolls.

"Periodically since she came out in 1959, this kind of thing has happened to Barbie," she says, noting that the doll has in the past been blamed for the widespread prevalence of eating disorders among young women.

As well, another controversy is beginning to swell in the U.S. regarding a special Barbie intended for adult collectors. The doll is dressed in sexy lingerie.

While the doll has been available since 1999, Caviale says consumers in the U.S. protested a recent re-issue of Lingerie Barbie, who was dressed in a tan-coloured outfit complete with garters and was packaged with extra lingerie. A past version of the doll wore a black bustier with garters and a robe.

"In my opinion, it's making a mountain out of a molehill," says Caviale, herself an owner of about 150 dolls.

But people protest because they can't accept what's going on in society.

"They want to blame the decline of society on a doll. But a doll is totally innocent; it's what you project on to it that can make is seem offensive."

Caviale notes that while Midge got a bad rap initially in the U.S., she's heard that the doll is selling well there in spite of Wal-Mart's decision not to stock her. She's still widely available at Target and Toys R Us.

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Old 02-02-2003, 02:29 PM   #2
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This is why I think the little dolls should never be left alone, unsupervised in the toy box.

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Old 02-02-2003, 02:43 PM   #3
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Solution: Single-Sex toy bins.

Of course it's Mal-Wart that doesn't want to sell the doll.
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Old 02-02-2003, 03:38 PM   #4
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I really don't see what the problem is with having a pregnant doll. She's even married!
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Old 02-02-2003, 04:23 PM   #5
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I have no problem with that set of dolls. As many of you know, I am a huge Barbie-lover. I look at that set everytime I go browsing for Barbies...I really want to buy it. I think it's cute.

If anybody thinks that a set of dolls is going to influence their kids to have sex...well, that's like blaming McDonald's for making your kids fat.
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Old 02-02-2003, 04:33 PM   #6
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Lots of childrern have mums who are/ have been its nothing really bad

I think its a good thing
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Old 02-02-2003, 05:04 PM   #7
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Originally posted by Lara Mullen
Lots of childrern have mums who are/ have been its nothing really bad

Exactly. Little girls already play with baby dolls and with dolls that have babies. Kids aren't as dumb as some people make them out to be.
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Old 02-02-2003, 05:28 PM   #8
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we have anatomically correct dolls at the Preschool
we have programmed baby dolls at the high school..
it's life, it's reality...a good thing.

Aussies may remember the Dylan Lewis/Recovery interview with U2 in Oz during Popmart. Someone asked about merchandise and Bono referred to the U2 dolls being in the factory mating with the Spice Girls dolls...something like that.
I still have Johnny, my boy doll from when I was little( he's armless though)He wasn't anatomically correct, just a "plastic mound" as they say on "the D-generation" I think it was. Poor Johhny I just about chewed his feet off and poked pins in him, I noticed the other day. It was actually quite a revelation. I wish I hadn't done that, but he saw me through some bleak times.
God I rave on.
Thumbs up to the pregnant doll imho.
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Old 02-02-2003, 05:35 PM   #9
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"It's kind of promoting kids having kids," says Janetta Wong, 15, who was scanning the Barbie aisle at Toys R Us.

I suppose all those 6 year olds are gonna go out and want to have sex so they can be like Midge... oooohh puh-leaze.

I don't see how this is any different then little girls wanting to play with a baby doll that they can feed, change diapers, etc...
"....But all I ever hear from you is "
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Old 02-02-2003, 06:27 PM   #10
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I wouldn't buy those for my kids.
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Old 02-02-2003, 06:35 PM   #11
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bwahahahha......plastic baby belly!!!!
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Old 02-02-2003, 06:59 PM   #12
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Originally posted by Mrs. Edge
Pregnant Midge arrived in Canada without complaint.
why am i not surprised? i don't see how this doll is a bad thing. the doll has a wedding ring on her finger, and has been married forever, so it's not like she's promoting having kids out of wedlock.

she's the redhead, right? if so, i remember when they came out with that wedding barbie line, where she was the bride, there was a groom, barbie was her maid of honour, and ken was the best man. i had the whole thing. 12 years would be about the right time frame, so i guess midge is the redhead.
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Old 02-02-2003, 08:12 PM   #13
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I had a pregnant doll..she had this thing in her stomach..if you turned one way she'd look pregnant..the other way she'd have a flat tummy.and she had a baby inside. So eh. doesn't bother me
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Old 02-02-2003, 08:50 PM   #14
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What's the big deal?
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Old 02-02-2003, 09:49 PM   #15
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Originally posted by Bonochick
I have no problem with that set of dolls. As many of you know, I am a huge Barbie-lover. I look at that set everytime I go browsing for Barbies...I really want to buy it. I think it's cute.

If anybody thinks that a set of dolls is going to influence their kids to have sex...well, that's like blaming McDonald's for making your kids fat.

Young girls have gotten pregnant before this doll came along, and they'll continue to get pregnant with or without this doll being around. Pulling the doll from shelves won't stop young girls from getting pregnant, I hate to break it to those who think it will.

Besides-it's a freakin' doll!

You know we're living in a sad world when we start blaming inanimate objects for the way society is.

Also agree with what meegannie, daisybean, and cass said as well-great points.


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