The 12 Greatest Barbie Dolls for Nerds

By Rob Bricken in Daily Lists, Toys
Thursday, May 7, 2009 at 5:00 am
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By Brian Heiler

She's been around for a half a century, she still looks great and just about every woman knows her name -- indeed, Barbie is one of the biggest icons in pop culture. But it's only been a short time that Barbie started hitting the guy's radar, mainly through a plethora of nerd-friendly Barbie sets that forced them to wander down the pink aisles in Toys R Us. These set also proved a godsend for nerdy girls who were forced by gender-stereotype-loving parents to get Barbies instead of the generally cooler boys' toys. Topless Robot quietly breaks into Barbie's Dream House to peep unnoticed and inappropriately at the 12 examples of Barbie nerdery at its finest.


12) The Flintstones Wilma and Betty Gift Set
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Much like their cartoon counterparts, the Wilma and Betty Barbies are disturbingly attractive. Take consolation in the fact that this two-pack was released last year, and had nothing to do with the live-action Flintstones movie where Rosie O'Donnell played Betty.

11) Barbie in King Kong
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Maybe King Kong isn't the nerdiest movie ever, but the fact remains that this set includes Barbie in Fay Wray distress mode while in Kong's hand. Yes, this is the only Barbie which comes with a giant monkey hand. Even a little piece of a giant monkey gives this enough of a cool factor to make the list.

10) Batman and Catwoman Tommy and Kelly
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We have no goddamn clue who Tommy and Kelly are, but they look adorably horrifying as the Dark Knight and Catwoman; Kelly is especially disturbing as a toddler wearing a leather catsuit and brandishing a whip. Still, Tommy would make for one hell of a 12-inch-scale Bat-mite figure, if you wanted one. For some reason.

9) Star Trek Kirk, Spock and Uhura
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These figures should be on shelves now, commemorating the new Star Trek movie with Ken pulling double-duty as both Kirk and Spock, and Barbie donning blackface to be Uhura (well, not really, but Barbie has several black friends who could have been Uhura, and yet Barbie hogged the spotlight. As usual. Bitch). Not only are these new toys the only place to get a 12-inch Uhura, since Playmates decided not to make one, but both Kens looks better than their Playmates' counterparts in that they look marginally like human beings.

8) Barbie as Wonder Woman
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Thanks to Mattel's deal with DC, Barbie has dressed up as many of DC's superheroines over the past few years. However, it's hard to get more iconic than Wonder Woman, and when you combine that with the icon that is Barbie, well... that's a hell of a a lot of girl power, and one hell of a doll. Plus, Wonder Barbie comes with a lasso and a better cape than Supergirl's, so there.

7) Barbie in The Birds
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This homage to the classic Hitchcock thriller has Barbie in the classic Tippi Hendren role as a woman about to get her fill of feathers, beaks and bird poop. This may be the first time that Mattel has released a Barbie in danger before. One wonders if anyone at Mattel suggested another Hitchcock classic with a Barbie in the shower while a knife-wielding Ken waits beyond the curtain in drag. I would imagine he'd pretty much be cleaning out his desk if he did.

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