A new game offered in the Google and iTunes stores caused quite the ruckus after its release last week, and for good reason. The free app, named "Plastic Surgery & Plastic Doctor & Plastic Hospital Office for Barbie Version," teaches girls how to perform liposuction on a hapless large blonde woman.
The game description read:
"This unfortunate girl has so much extra weight that no diet can help her. In our clinic she can go through a surgery called liposuction that will make her slim and beautiful. We'll need to make small cuts on problem areas and suck out the extra fat. Will you operate on her, doctor?"
UM. WHAT?! "Unfortunate girl"!? "Slim and beautiful"?! "Problem areas"!? So not only is the app teaching girls incredibly narrow standards of beauty to which they will certainly compare themselves, it's also equipping them with the tools to 'take care' of this imaginary problem of "extra weight." Exactly what 9-year-old girls need.
The developer 'corina rodriguez' has 27 other games on iTunes, most of which are some type of makeover/dressup or childcare format. Interestingly, she has another surgery game that focuses on trauma surgery, where the player fixes Barbie's broken leg using tools like scalpels, fixation plates, clamps, and bovies. That seems pretty cool. Liposuction? Not so much at all whatsoever.
After Everyday Sexism highlighted the app's fuckery, iTunes quietly removed the app from its store this morning. Good riddance.
Seriously, for every beauty-oriented app there is for young girls, there should also be three more affirmative apps where they can be balaclava-clad anarcho-feminists virtually vandalizing over-photoshopped images in subway stops or a Street Fighter II-type battling thinspiration fads or maybe they can just play Intersectional Memory, where no two cards are the same. Anything to combat bullshit like a liposuction app.
Image via 'Plastic Surgery...' iTunes page