Who is Midge in the Barbie movie? The true story behind the controversial pregnant Barbie doll

5 April 2023, 13:15

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By Sam Prance

Emerald Fennell plays the role of Midge in the new Barbie movie.

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Barbie fans are losing it over the fact that discontinued pregnant doll Midge is in the movie.

Ever since Barbie was announced, plot details for the highly anticipated movie have been kept under-wraps. And now the film has officially been released – and well on the way to make $1 billion at the box office (!!) – we know exactly how everything plays out.

The film follows Margot Robbie's Stereotypical Barbie as she sets out on a mission to leave the perfect, pink paradise of Barbie Land behind, and find out why all these weird and upsetting things are happening to her in the Real World. Alongside all the other Barbies who live in Barbie Land, there's all the Kens, one singular Allan, Skipper and of course, Midge.

READ MORE: Barbie deleted scenes reveal wild Helen Mirren and Midge end credit scene

Hype for Midge's appearance first started when the official Barbie posters were unveiled, and they included Emerald Fennell as the pregnant doll. For those of you who don't know, Midge was a real Barbie doll that sparked a lot of controversy and the true story behind her is wild.

What happened to Midge? Was she real?

Who is Midge in the Barbie movie? The true story behind the controversial pregnant Barbie doll
Who is Midge in the Barbie movie? The true story behind the controversial pregnant Barbie doll. Picture: LANDMARK MEDIA / Alamy Stock Photo, Warner Bros. Pictures

Mattel first released a Midge Barbie doll in 1963. Midge, full name Margaret Hadley Sherwood, was originally introduced as Barbie's Irish-American best friend. Following criticism that Barbie looked too adult, Midge was given softer more child-like features and there were blonde, brunette and and red-headed versions of Midge. Midge was discontinued in 1967.

Mattel then brought back Midge in 1988 first as California Dream Midge and later variations such as Cool Times Midge, All Stars Midge and Wedding Day Midge joined her. However, it's the 2003 version of Midge that left a lasting impression on Barbie fans and had to be discontinued after she sparked a backlash from parents of Barbie customers.

In 2003, Barbie launched a Happy Family line in which Midge and Allan were presented as a family with three of their own children including Baby Nikki. Midge was sold pregnant with baby Nikki. Not only that but Nikki came inside of Midge's magnetic, removable womb.

Pregnant Midge came in both white and Black variations and she was made available to buy separately from Allan.

Pregnant Midge Barbie with a detachable bump containing an articulated foetus amid Barbie set doll exhibit at the Toy museum in Prague Czech Republic
Pregnant Midge Barbie with a detachable bump containing an articulated foetus amid Barbie set doll exhibit at the Toy museum in Prague Czech Republic. Picture: Alamy

Midge received numerous complaints from adults who said that she was inappropriate for children and encouraged teen pregnancy. They also took issue with the fact that Midge initially didn't have a wedding ring. The complaints were so widespread that Walmart removed the Happy Family line from their shelves.

Naturally, fans of Midge are living for the fact that Midge has been included in the Barbie movie film and is very clearly pregnant. One fan tweeted: "Living for the fact that they included the banned Midge doll... they really did their Barbie research and are having fun with it, it’s so campy I love it".

Another wrote: "I am ECSTATIC that pregnant Midge is part of the film. When the "Happy Family" Barbie line was released in 2003, Midge was sold "pregnant" with a tiny baby doll in her magnetic removable womb, but she was pulled from shelves as parents believed it promoted teen pregnancy."

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