Nude Barbie

Photographs of nude Barbie dolls being menaced by kitchen appliances are protected free speech, a federal appeals court has ruled. Mattel had sued, charging copyright infringement.

The artist had argued that the photo series, which also included a photo of Barbie dolls wrapped in tortillas and covered in salsa in a casserole dish in a lit oven, was meant to critique the “objectification of women” and “beauty myth” associated with the popular doll.

Works for me.

Also read James Lileks on bondage issues involving JetSki Barbie.

It took 17 minutes to free Barbie from the wires, plastic garottes, tape and screws that binded her to the box. If you did not hire bondage enthusiasts to design the packages, parents might have an easier time on Christmas morn. Okay? Okay.

By next Christmas, Mattel probably will introduce Nude KitchenFighting Barbie. Well, not nude. Because the money is in the accessories and outfits.

About Joanne


  1. damaged justice says:

    I used to objectify Barbies (and GI Joes) by setting them on fire, as a culmination to long hours of using fireworks to blow up buildings (hastily constructed from sticks) with their hapless bodies trapped inside. Ah, the days of blissful apolitical ignorance…

  2. Andy Freeman says:

    If Victoria’s Secret is analogous, Mattel can charge more for “nude” Barbie accessories than it does for other accessories.

  3. PJ/Maryland says:

    Well, not nude. Because the money is in the accessories and outfits.

    If Nude KitchenFighting Barbie actually loses to the appliances (as I’d expect), then Mattel might actually make a profit on the (repeated) sales of dolls. Tho I suppose a pureed outfit would also have to be replaced…

    When NKF Barbie catches on, Bed Bath and Beyond can introduce a line of appliances to go with it; I suggest they name it Attack Barbie™ appliances. More royalties for Mattel!

  4. Well, not nude. Because the money is in the accessories and outfits.

    Well, yes nude. BECAUSE the money is in the accessories and outfits …. sold separately

  5. By that same logic, Ford should be able to sue an artist who takes a series of photographs that portray a Ford car in a bad light. And obviously that’s dumb.