The live-action Barbie movie Ken doll is a misandrist’s dream come true. Don’t let the movie’s misdirecting marketing messages fool you: Barbie’s boy pal is a deeply insecure, dim-witted, bombastic, autocratic, insensitive himbo. The “patriarchy” personified – at least according to the filmmakers. So…
Did TAG Heuer think it was a good idea to let a mercilessly mocked and vilified villain “rock” vintage Carreras in a movie about “male fragility”?
What’s more, Ken doesn’t wear one Carrera chronograph. Or double wrist two. He triple wrists three.
It’s a joke, right? Only it’s the same joke as the main joke: Ken is pathetic. What used to be called (back in Barbie’s formative years) a sad sack. An evil sad sack, however unintentionally.
The actor playing the not-so-fantastic plastic doll come-to-life, Ryan Gosling, had something to say about the horological propistry.
“Generally the watch is a symbol that you’re busy and you have important things to do and cool places to be, When you’re a Ken, you have none of those things. So it’s even more important for you to appear that you do.
“I’m sure you’re all aware of the Coco Chanel rule: before you leave the house, you take one thing off. The Ken Rule is you put three things on.“
The Barbie movie Ken doll rule: be a wanker. And yes, true wankerdom combines a stunning lack of self-awareness with sneerable tackiness. And O.K., the triple TAG inanity is in keeping with Greta Gerwig’s feminist dietribe [sic]. But why did TAG agree to this? Or, at the least, tell their beloved brand ambassador that ain’t happening.
Three months ago, this was Ryan Gosling’s ambassadorial image – funded and approved by TAG-Heuer.
Here we see a funny, lovable, self-deprecating, handsome, well-dressed, whale tail Porsche Carerra Turbo-driving Gosling squaring up against a definitely-not-Margot Robbie prop master attempting to reclaim a gorgeous modern TAG timepiece. One that loads of people can actually buy.
The female prop master is an average-looking action hero. A strong, determined woman dedicated to doing her job. The director inside the video is another strong, competent woman. IMHO, this is feminism as it should be.
The contrast with the Barbie movie Ken doll couldn’t be any starker. More to the point, for TAG-Heuer anyway, the watch is the hero in this in-house production. Enjoyed by 22 million viewers/potential customers and counting.
I suspect TAG’s PR department agreed to the Barbie movie denigration – assuming they did – because a) they knew it was going to be a massive hit (there’s no such thing as bad publicity) and b) Ryan (I’m your ambassador!) and the movie’s producers put the watchmaker into a star-gazing Hollywood trance. And let’s face it: it’s hard to say no when Margo Robbie is within a mile or so of your location.
I can’t find a publicity shot of the triple wristing Barbie movie Ken doll. I assume that’s intentional. The image above from TAG’s website is where the brand should be, along with their headliners: manly men Ayrton Senna and Steve McQueen.
You can’t find an image of Gosling as Ken on TAG’s website. What does that tell you? It tells me that they should have never agreed to participate in the Barbie movie. If Gosling did this on his own, TAG should have done everything in their power to make sure their product didn’t appear on the character’s wrist. Not even once.