It seems PETA may be responsible for Barbie’s recently failed employment opportunity as Mattel spokesman Alex Clark confirms reports that Mattel will stop making the SeaWorld Trainer Barbie Doll, along with the rest of its SeaWorld related merchandise.
“We’re not making the doll anymore,” Clark told NBC News. “Consumers may find it on retail shelves but we are not shipping and not producing the doll.” Refraining from the specifics regarding the decision he stated;
“A number of factors go into a decision like that,” he said. “Their licensing deal expired and we’ve elected not to renew it.”
Their recent announcement comes on the heels of growing backlash the aquatic theme park has received concerning the treatment of their captive orcas as well as the safety of their trainers. A SeaWorld trainer was drowned by an orca whale in front of an audience of park guests in 2010, and the public outcry over 2013 documentary Blackfish that deals with the death of captive orcas spurred the company to launch a series of PSA-type ads where trainers commend their dedication to animal welfare.
Animal activist groups are now praising Mattel’s decision to send SeaWorld Trainer Barbie into the ranks of the unemployed, with comments such as; “It is very fitting that Mattel would dump Sea World Trainer Barbie,” said PETA spokeswoman Stephanie Shaw. “She’s now able to maintain her animal-friendly image.”
PETA is now making its plea heard among the remaining corporate sponsors of SeaWorld including AAA motor club in hopes they too will join the many who have already succumbed to the pressure and severed ties with the theme park including Southwest Airlines, Taco Bell and the Miami Dolphins (whose name may be the next to go if their not careful).