The Barbie Movie Exists to Sell Barbies

Any evidence of the contrary is Good Marketing

Adrien Book

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What can be said about the Barbie Movie that has not already been said?

The film comes to us in a tumultuous time, and journalists have used its expansive release to make a variety of geo-political and socio-economic commentaries.

I have limited opinions on the above, other than the obvious (doing Bad Things is Bad). What I do have qualms about is the movie being framed as anything other than a marketing ploy. In doing so, it tries to shed away the baggage the brand should still be very much atoning for.

Barbie director Greta Gerwig was recently interviewed by the New York Times. It’s a great read, but the below stands out as a baffling misunderstanding of the forces at play here.

If there is a kind of earnestness that once would have precluded a director from “selling out,” it is the same earnestness that now precludes them from thinking about that notion at all. […] The movie is a celebration of Barbie and a subterranean apologia for Barbie. It is a giant corporate undertaking and a strange, funny personal project. It is a jubilant, mercilessly effective polymer-and-pink extravaganza whose guiding star turns out to be Gerwig’s own sincerity. “Things can be both/and,” she said. “I’m doing the thing and subverting the thing.”

This paragraph makes no sense. Greta Gerwig is selling out. There is nothing wrong with that; she is a successful and thoughtful director, with a solid track record, looking to level…

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Adrien Book

Strategy Consultant | Tech writer | Somewhat French