Mon
Feb 27 2012 1:30pm

Would You Buy Your Child a Katniss Barbie?

Would You Buy Your Child a Katniss Barbie?Ever thought you’d see the day when a Barbie doll could shoot an arrow through someone’s throat?

The online Hunger Games community has discovered a placeholder page on the Entertainment Earth retail site for a Katniss Barbie doll from Mattel. There are no images to go with the listing, unfortunately, but a release date is project for April 2012.

The merchandising choices behind The Hunger Games have been pretty interesting so far. Is this reducing Katniss to a mindless walking clothes hanger or will this be a subversion of what Barbie dolls are commonly known for?

We suppose it all comes down to whether they include Katniss’ signature weapon. Would you buy your child a Katniss Barbie?

This article is part of The Hunger Games on Tor.com: ‹ previous | index | next ›
11 comments
Stephanie Treanor
1. Streanor
Not a barbie but a Katness action figure yes!

Somehow i cant really see her bow and arrow working well inside the barbie dream house. Maybe in the fitness room?
Emily Lind
2. Malana
I was explaining the plot of Hunger Games to my co-worker the other day and she stopped me saying "Wait, why is there a nail polish line for this?" To which I said "Exactly."

I'd rather have a kick-ass action figure than a Barbie, but if they sell her with cool accessories and not pretty sparkly outfits (except for maybe the Girl on Fire one) I might get behind it.
R O T
3. rogerothornhill
A Katniss Barbie is completely in keeping with the ongoing subtheme of marketing the Tributes in Collins' trilogy. Cinna, for one, would have loved it. And I cannot wait for The Mockingjay Barbie!
Larry B
4. Larry B
I would buy it and put it next to the Barbie Start Trek and X-Files Barbie
Larry B
5. Rancho Unicorno
Depends on the price, but probably.

To my mind, the distinction between an action figure and a Barbie is that the figure wears what it wears, while the Barbie can be dressed for whatever purpose (which is pretty much a clothes hanger). The girl really enjoys dressing up her dolls for whatever event she is having - usually princessy things since she is in a princessy phase - just like you would for any play. I could see her enjoying something like this. The boy would just throw her across the room or run her over with his trucks, regardless of being an action figure or a Barbie.

Of course, I never really cared for the books (I had a hard time staying interested and gave up around the arriving in The Capitol or whatever scene in the first book - maybe it gets better, nobody has tried to convince me). I might be more enthused about this if I did.
Larry B
6. The Literary Omnivore
As a geek, reader, and Barbie fan, I think the idea of this being an odd choice is just silly.

Of course there's going to be a Katniss Barbie—there was an Uhura Barbie too, as well as Angelica from the latest Pirates movie. Is it because we're trying to promote The Hunger Games as the anti-Twilight, which comes with weird, androcentric territory? The merch will always be insane—it's a YA phenom, of course it will be. If there's a market, they will make it.

I really think their Katniss will look like their Twilight Victoria doll; pretty and sensibly dressed.

Of course, there's always the chance I'm bitter because I always lose my bids for that Harley Quinn Barbie…
Larry B
7. EllenC
Oh yes. Yes I would. Because she would squeal and jump up and down.

I would also buy her the nail polish if I could find it in a store. io9 had a link to the CafePress Hunger Games store up last night, and come payday, I am taking care of her birthday shopping. There's an awesome fridge magnet about tesserae.
Larry B
8. Puff the Magic Commenter
"Ever thought you’d see the day when a Barbie doll could shoot an arrow through someone’s throat?"

Not specifically that, no, but when we were little, my sister's Barbie oversaw the public hanging of my GI Joe. More than once, I think.
Larry B
9. Shellywb
Huh. They not only took the plot from manga and dumbed it down, they did the same with the merchandising, which I didn't think was possible.
Larry B
10. Beth Cato
Well, my childhood Barbie was a cruel vixen who at one point was beheaded by a jury of Breyer horses. Barbie was then condemned to hell [i.e. the trench by the side of my bed] but later came back from the dead to cause more mischief.

I should also note that this was Astronaut Barbie.

Gee, is it any wonder I write fantasy and sci fi?

I think the marketing for the Hunger Games is getting outright silly, but Barbie's potential is determined by the child. I bet Katniss could come back from hell more than once, too.
Larry B
11. BrooklynShoeBabe
I would totally buy my daughters' a Katniss Barbie doll. At 5 and 7, they have about 25 Barbie Dolls between them and the adventures those dolls go on are far more beyond being just a clothes hanger. I've seen the Barbies thwart robberies; break their fellow Barbie soldiers out of POW prisons; and I've seen them break up weddings while doing kung fu. If you look at any of the Barbie DVDs, you will see that Barbie can be a role model. She's smart, clever, and athletic. She's fair; fights the bad guys/girls; and never stops pursuing her goals just because "she's a girl." (That's been an underlying theme in a few of the recent cartoons.) If my daughters had a Barbie with a bow and arrow, I would all the other Barbies because one would end up with one in her throat.

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