Barbie’s world seems like it would be pink, frilly and innocent. But that’s not exactly how Nicki Minaj and Ice Spice see it. “Barbie World,” the title of their latest track (which’ll be featured in the upcoming Barbie movie starring Margot Robbie), paints a very different picture.
“Barbie World” is a sort of variation of the 1997 Aqua release “Barbie Girl.” Just like Aqua’s original (which plays in the background), this song is sexual in nature. But unlike the original, Minaj and Spice take it a step further to include more sexually suggestive and graphic lyrics paired with profanity and a video that feels much like something you’d expect from–well, from Nicki Minaj.
The Barbies in discussion here are Minaj and Spice themselves. They’re the “baddest” Barbies around (“All of the Barbies is pretty”). The sort of Barbies who spend their time in bed, shamelessly, with Kens (“I’m a ten, so I pull in a Ken/… He wanna play in the Playhouse/…The way Ken be killin’ s— got me yellin’ out”).
They’re not afraid to be aggressive (“The f— they gon’ say now?”) and violent (“She a Barbie b–ch with her Barbie clique/I keep draggin’ her, so she bald a bit”). And they’re the sort of Barbies who aspire to be wealthy and independent above all else (“And I see the bread, I want all of it”).
If you listen to this song, you understand that the Barbies being discussed here are of the “modern” kind. The kind that aren’t afraid to be sexually explicit, vulgar and profane.
This is reiterated not only in the lyrics themselves but in the video (which is sitting at number one on YouTube’s music charts), which features Minaj and Spice twerking and performing other sexually suggestive acts, all while letting their cleavage, stomachs and rears hang out. It also shows shirtless men worshiping them.
The original “Barbie Girl” was by no means innocent. But this little tune takes it a step or two further to try and completely reframe Barbie under a shiny, morally skewed light.
Kristin Smith joined the Plugged In team in 2017. Formerly a Spanish and English teacher, Kristin loves reading literature and eating authentic Mexican tacos. She and her husband, Eddy, love raising their children Judah and Selah. Kristin also has a deep affection for coffee, music, her dog (Cali) and cat (Aslan).