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When did Barbie dolls have friends and family? Ken, Midge, Teresa and others

As befits any lady, sooner or later Barbie had to get a family. What happened – in 1961, the platinum blonde appeared plastic “boyfriend” Ken, named after the younger son of Ruth Hendler.
Over time, Barbie “overgrown” with new friends and relatives. Two years later, in 1963, she had a girlfriend named Midge, after her on the horizon another one appeared – black brunette Teresa, younger sisters – teenager Skipper and baby Shelley and other family members appeared from nowhere.
The names of the new relatives, as was the tradition, were given in honor of the grandsons of Mrs. Hendler. “Replenishment” of the family continued in the 21st century. A storm of indignation was caused by the sudden appearance of pregnant Midge on the shelves. Opponents of the doll suggested that the “expectant mother” could lead to an increase in infant pregnancy, because for many girls Barbie and her friends are the standard for imitation.
But the doll makers didn’t see anything reprehensible in the release of the Happy Family puppet set, which, besides Midge herself, also included her husband and a three-year-old son. And what could be surprising in the fact that the “girl”, the production of which began in 1963, “got married” in 1991, and after some time decided to acquire offspring? In addition, pregnant Midge wore a wedding ring by all the rules, and in addition to her were attached baby supplies: a changing table, baby cot, baby monitor and toys for the newborn.
Barbie’s latest “acquisition” was her grandmother in a floral print blouse and grandfather in a wool sweater in stores in 2003. Both gray and sold only in pairs. If to all this kindred, bestowed beauty by Mattel, to add all the “illegitimate” relatives of China, Malaysia, Taiwan and other regions of the world, the doll’s family will grow to incredible limits. Barbie’s high popularity in the world could not help but leave its imprint on the doll.
In the 1980s, the appearance of beauty changed: in addition to the remaining universal darling blue-eyed blonde, dolls with the appearance of Africans, Latinas and Asians were released. The many-sided fashionista has become an international toy: a whole series of dolls appeared in national costumes.
For nearly 50 years of her history, Barbie has mastered many professions: she was a veterinarian and a dentist, a teacher and an astronaut, a ballerina and a stewardess, an employee of the McDonald’s fast-food restaurant chain and a jockey, acted as Marilyn Monroe and Scarlett O’Hara, Zolusha and Sleeping Beauties, etc. And in 2002, the limited edition for the Christmas holidays was the new Barbie. The updated doll was devoted to the products of the company Lingerie, which produces underwear, therefore appeared before the public in a daring short satin pearl-gray combination with black trim and in stockings.
Such a Barbie cost $ 45 (which is on average about twice as high as the cost of an “average puppet blonde”), and was intended more for collectors than for children. But not everything went smoothly in the life of the first American beauty. The year 2004 became fateful: as a bolt from the blue came the news that after 43 years of happy family life, Barbie and Ken parted. Divorce was officially announced at the International Toy Fair in the United States. It was also recognized on behalf of the dolls that, despite the current situation, the former spouses will remain good friends.
Ken, as befits a real man, all the jointly acquired property nobly left his former lover. Perhaps this drama could have been avoided if Barbie’s mother, Ruth Hendler, who unfortunately could not defend the “daughter’s” happiness, intervened in the official divorce – she died in 2002 due to complications after a bowel operation. But no sorrow and litigation could not break the resistant plastic beauty. She is still cheerful and cheerful, her radiant eyes and an open smile are still, like 50 years ago, forever conquering the sensitive hearts of millions of girls.

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