It started with the ecstatic spokespeople from Mattel telling us how turning fifty really is FABULOUS! Shortly thereafter the giant screen displayed famous photo of young naked girl running away from bomb in Vietnam War. That disturbing iconic image was mixed in with photos of female legends from Margaret Thatcher to Jane Goodall to National Geographic ‘Afghan Girl’ photo all the way to local media maven/CAMH poster woman – Valerie Pringle. Words like FEARLESS, DARING and VALIANT interjected the iconic images. While this was happening, models strutted out in David Dixon’s fall/winter collection that included a lot of S&M pvc tops and arm warmers mixed with conservative maroon power suits; a resurgence to the mid nineties – very CK one.
When Dixon’s BRAVE inspired show ended, the tone of the tent flipped to candy coated girlicious on acid. Male models descended the catwalk carrying trays of RICH PROSECCO, aka Paris Hilton bubbly in a can. Their shirts sported sassy tag line, “Ken –who??” Which really translates into “I F*CK WHO I WANT AND KEN YOU ARE MY LACKEY”
Sipping on RICH we watched the montage of Barbie through the eras, soundtrack commenced with Courtney Love’s “DOLL PARTS”. The music twisted into a sort of psychedelic nightmare where a scary voice cried out “A plastic tan never fades”
The best part of show was watching the pretty doll like models strut with their long and shiny hair bouncing gracefully. We wanted to play with it – brush it, cut it, die it, CHOP IT, RAZOR SLICE IT and PULL IT!!!– like a real Barbie doll.
The pink confetti was fun but all in all we thought Dixon’s interpretation of Barbie lacked her over-the-top, prom-queen qualities and only showed outfits that would spice up a fax machine. Harrumphing late at night on Twitter, @geekigirl responded to our complaints: “Barbie is all things and all you got was Sexy Secretary Barbie. Too bad.”
…well, that’s not all we got. Exiting the tent we were delighted to receive a pink Barbie swag bag with a 1977 Superstar Barbie. The back of the box reminds us of that groovy time “feathered hair, mood rings, disco balls, and platform shoes.” Was Superstar Barbie a swinger too?
Two different shows by one designer presented a clusterfuck of female icons from the brave and heroic to the materialistic and vacuous. The mixed messages were so overwhelming that we were brought back to early teenage years when Barbie assisted us with History homework. Joan of Arc project would be interrupted by an application of Dr. Pepper lipsmacker. Checking out our soda-pop lips in the mirror we’d wonder if we’d ever be as pretty as Barbie.