Yes, Barbie Used To Have A Pregnant Bestie Named Midge (2024)

Hi Barbie! It's nearly time to wake up (again) in your own pink world. Yup. Greta Gerwig's mega-summer hit will be available to rent and purchase on Amazon Prime Video and Google Play on September 12, and is expected to hit Max at some point this fall.

The new Barbie movie made sure to nod to the whole, diverse Barbieland community. Including a cameo from a very surprising and very heavily pregnant Barbie named Midge. Barbie dolls have been around for a very long time.

Yes, it's true. Midge is one very early, lesser-known member of Barbieland, who shows up in Barbie as a pregnant woman (played by Emerald Fennell), along with her husband Allan (played by Michael Cera). Most people don't know that Barbie had, at one time, a pregnant bestie, so it makes sense that people have a lot of questions. Like, can Barbies even have babies?! As it turns out, yes they can. Well, Midge can.

I wouldn't blame you if you don't remember her. This doll was so controversial, at one point in the early 2000s she was actually discontinued. But who is Midge and what’s up with all the drama surrounding her pregnant belly? Here’s everything to know about Barbie's bestie:

Who is “Pregnant Barbie”?

“Pregnant Barbie” is actually Margaret Hadley Sherwood, or Midge, as her friends call her. Midge was created to be a less glam, more relatable Barbie, per Buzzfeed News.

The doll was launched in 1963 as Barbie's bestie. She had freckles and red hair, and she wore less makeup than Barbie did. The first version of Midge was discontinued in 1967 and replaced with a doll named PJ, who looked more like Barbie. BTW, the original version of the doll was *not* pregnant.

By the late 1980s, Midge was back on shelves as part of the California Dream Barbie set. Then, she was re-released in the 1990s wearing a wedding dress, and again in 2002 with a detachable magnetic pregnant stomach, which allowed her to “deliver” a small plastic baby curled up inside, per CBS News. And that's where the chaos began.

The doll was very quickly discontinued (more on that in a sec) and now, pregnant Midge sell for hundreds of dollars online.

Why was Midge controversial?

The newly pregnant Midge was sold as part of Barbie’s “Happy Family” collection, and Mattel said that she could help parents teach kids about babies, per CBS News.

But when preggo Midge hit the market in 2002, customers freaked out over the idea that little kids would be playing with a pregnant doll, and she was quickly pulled from Walmart shelves across the country that same year, according to the Associated Press. Several people interviewed for the article said they thought the doll might "glamorize" and promote teen pregnancy.

And, as the narrator says at the beginning of the Barbie movie, a pregnant doll was just "too weird."

Who was Allan?

Allan, played by Michael Cera in the Barbie movie, is Ken’s best friend. Basically, he's the male version of Midge. Allan is thought to be named after the son-in-law of Ruth Handler, Barbie's creator. Ruth's daughter, Barbara, was married to a man named Allen Segal for many years.

Mattel created Allan to be Midge's husband, and he “married” Midge in 1991—on Barbieland terms, of course, per CBS News.

Did Midge have other children?

Yep. In addition to the small baby that pops out of Midge’s detachable stomach, she and Allan also have a 3-year-old son named Ryan. Together, the crew made up Mattel’s “Happy Family” collection.

Who plays Midge in the Barbie movie?

Actress Emerald Fennell! The Academy Award-winning actress gets very little airtime in the movie, but she definitely is a main character IRL. In the film, viewers get a very quick pan of Midge waving from her front yard as the narrator explains who she is.

You might recognize Emerald from her time on Killing Eve or from her role as Camilla Parker Bowles in The Crown.

When does 'Barbie' hit streaming?

You may be wondering where you can see the wonderful Midge doll in action. Barbie will be available to rent and purchase for $29.99 on select streamers this week, starting September 12, 2023.

You will also be able to stream it on Max very soon, but an exact date has not been announced. For right now, here's where you can buy (or rent) the film:

Watch Now

While you are enjoying the many versions of Barbie offered in the film, remember there is only one Midge, and she's

Yes, Barbie Used To Have A Pregnant Bestie Named Midge (2)

Korin Miller

Korin Miller is a freelance writer specializing in general wellness, sexual health and relationships, and lifestyle trends, with work appearing in Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Self, Glamour, and more. She has a master’s degree from American University, lives by the beach, and hopes to own a teacup pig and taco truck one day.

Yes, Barbie Used To Have A Pregnant Bestie Named Midge (2024)
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