For the great majority of mankind are satisfied with appearances, as though they were realities, and are more often influenced by the things that ‘seem’ than by those that ‘are’.
- Niccolo Machiavelli
Barbie: gregarious model entrepreneur by day and head-decapitating psycho killer by night; a metaphor exposing the disingenuous temperament of humankind.
Artists and authors have been confronting the notion of Machiavellian equivocation for centuries. Shakespeare blurred the lines between Illusion and Certainty with uncomfortable discernment, Jane Austen confronted the social constraints dictating the dramatic opposition between a Public and Private existence and, more recently, Jeff Lindsay used Dexter Morgan to explore the duplicitous nature of the human character with an Appearance versus Reality theme.
Killer Barbie is a stark reminder that appearances mean jack… and reality is largely uncertain in most instances. When it comes to people, what you see is very rarely what you get; secrets and other identities pervade existence. If blonde bombshell Barbie can kill, who are we to trust? Not even ourselves.
A little dark? A little demented? – Kinda like the danger lurking beneath the surface of Barbie’s sickly sweet idealism. Gag. Not to hate on Barbie. She stems from the human imagination, which has created a plastic plaything, encumbered with a sword of deception that has the power to guillotine reality with false hope.
A tad dramatic?
Photo Credit: Mariel Clayton