Skinny Minnie Mouse?

New York fashion emporium Barney’s is teaming up with Disney for this year’s holiday promotion, entitled “Electric Holiday.”

The campaign features a 3-D film in which Disney’s most iconic and beloved character’s appear as supermodels in Paris, strutting the catwalks in designer fashions.

Early images have leaked, and fury over the reed thin physiques given to Minnie Mouse, Daisy Duck and Goofy has caused quite a stir.

Enraged activists and parents alike, have banded together against the re-proportioning of the characters, saying that they send a negative body image message to children.

Granted, the bodies are exaggerated to an extreme. But is it all in good fun, or truly problematic?

Barney’s is one of the most high-end retailers in the country. It has only 11 outposts in the United States, all of which are in status locations.

The company is also known for it’s irreverent and humorous approach to marketing, especially in its holiday windows. Even the Queen of England was not immune to their witty treatment.

Barney’s does not market to children. It is not a national chain. It certainly does not cater to the masses. Those who are the target clientele will most likely respond favorably to this film. So where is the harm? Without all of this press, how many children would actually be affected by it?

Join me on Huff Post Live this Friday, October 19, at 1:00 Eastern Standard Time, as we debate whether or not Barney’s and Disney is sending a negative message to young girls about body image.

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8 Responses to “Skinny Minnie Mouse?”

  1. enlightenedprincess Says:

    “Without all of this press, how many children would actually be affected by it?” I also don’t think children would be immensely affected by those images. I actually think that the massive chorus of outrage is a little exaggerated. Still, I have to say that I personally don’t like them. Just because I can’t seem to find them pretty.

  2. julie hansen Says:

    I wish people would just lighten up! Minnie is cute either way- if it would change a childs body image that easiley there was already a problem!

  3. One Fit Mama Says:

    The press is why they are doing it silly. Gotta love marketing

    • indigo jones Says:

      Thanks One Fit Mama! I am told that I will likely be the only panelist on Huffpost Live that thinks it’s no big deal. They are so overly stylized, that it isn’t a real looking body image to project.It’s a stick figure!

  4. Payton Pellegrini Says:

    Hi Shari, I’m watching you live right now. I agree with you! People need to chill out. Since when is a cartoon character a model for body image? It’s all “tongue in cheek” as you say. Congrats on being on this panel. Get in there and tell those other panelists to calm down!

    • indigo jones Says:

      Thanks Peyton! It seems my blog followers agree. If my daughter gets an eating disorder from an overly stylized cartoon character, I will have failed in many ways!

  5. Craig Harden Says:

    I understand Barneys New York marketing tactics very well yet I think this is EXTREMELY disturbing as the entire style/creative world will be exposed to a tremendous amount of PR around this & despite that the retailer has 11 outposts in select markets, multitudes of young girls will be exposed to this ridiculous imagery as a result of the coverage.

    [As an aside, see Robin Givhan’s insightful piece in this week’s Newsweek/The Daily Beast re the fashion industry, models vs. real women’s bodies, et al.]

    Craig Harden

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