LOS ANGELES (CBS Local) – Mattel, the makers of the famous Barbie and Ken dolls, have decided to shake up Ken’s image. Typically he’d be portrayed as a “nice guy,” as Mattel would put it, and one that hardly would have an ounce of body fat if scaled onto a real human.
But no more: Mattel has released a new, diverse line of 15 Ken dolls.
Diverse beyond than just their ethnicity, these new Kens come in all shapes, sizes and haircuts. They were meant to better depict Ken to mirror this generation.
“By continuing to expand our product line, we are redefining what a Barbie or Ken doll looks like to this generation,” Lisa McKnight, Barbie’s senior vice president and general manager, said in a press release. “Evolving Ken was a natural evolution for the brand and allows girls to further personalize the role they want him to play in Barbie’s world.”
Ken used to be an afterthought and a man that was just the aforementioned “nice guy” to have alongside Barbie.
“In the past Ken was really viewed as more of an accessory in Barbie’s world, to support the narrative of whatever was happening with the girls,” said Michael Shore, Mattel’s head of global consumer insights, via GQ.
Now, Ken has a persona(s) of his own and is finally ready to step out from behind Barbie’s picture-perfect shadow.