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Out Staff Dives Deep Into Barbie's Inclusive & Diverse Representation

Out Staff Dives Deep Into Barbie's Inclusive & Diverse Representation

Out Staff Dives Deep Into Barbie's Inclusive & Diverse Representation
Kim Newmoney

Out's Daniel Reynolds and Mey Rude join Cover to Cover to discuss the new blockbuster film.

The latest Out cover starsAlexandra Shipp, Hari Nef, and Scott Evans — are part of the diverse cast that makes up Greta Gerwig’s Barbie.

Cover to Cover, a show from our sister networkThe Advocate Channel, sat down with Out’s editor-in-chief Daniel Reynolds and staff writer Mey Rude to discuss the diversity and inclusivity featured in the new, blockbuster film.

Reynolds discussed Barbie shame and how boys had to hide Barbies away from their parents because we knew there was a certain stigma attached to them.

Reynolds said he would play with Barbies in his grandmother’s attic, but, “When I heard footsteps coming up the stairs, I would immediately throw them in the closet and bring out the G.I. Joes because I knew even then I was transgressing some kind of invisible wall of gender.”

Gerwig also addressed Barbie’s inclusivity via e-mail, where she stated, “There’s no way we could have told this story without bringing in the LGBTQ+ community, and it was important for us to represent the diversity that Mattel has created with all of the different Barbies and Kens that exist today.”

As to the criticism Barbie has faced, Gerwig was aware of the potential backlash but also knew what Barbie meant to so many different types of people.

Rude had the opportunity to speak to Nef, who noted they were cast to play a trans character, but ultimately represented the community in a different way.

“Her character in the movie is a Doctor Barbie,” said Rude. “She’s not a trans Barbie, she’s a normal doll like all the other Barbies. So she says she doesn’t really consider this to be necessarily ‘trans representation,’ but still, the movie has a very important message for trans people: She says the movie is all about living your own life in your own body by your own rules, and not following anyone else’s expectations of what your femininity or womanhood should be.”

Check out the full Cover to Cover segment in the video below:

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