Look Out Jem: It’s Barbie & the Rockers!

Posted by Michael Pinto on Aug 19, 2009 in Animation, Hobbies and Collections |

This video shows two things: The first is how a show like Jem can come out of nowhere and give a well established brand like a Barbie a run for the money — and the second thing is just how much cultural mindspace MTV owned back in the 80s when it was new. Inspired by MTV Jem and the Holograms went on the air in 1985 and suddenly Barbie who had been around since 1959 seemed slightly old fashioned.

But the well oiled machine they were Mattel rolled out Barbie & the Rockers in 1986 (as shown in this commercial). The rockers stayed on the market for about three years and stared in a direct to video film Barbie and the Rockers: Out of this World and there was even a sequel! By the end of the 80s the uniqueness of MTV faded as did Jem — so Barbie would continue to conquer the world.

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