Is Mexican Barbie a stereotype or a good representation?

2014 Mexican Barbie sports Mariachi garb

EL PASO, Texas -      The newest Barbie in Mattel's "Dolls of the World" series comes out later this month. The doll is dressed in mariachi garb. Is it stereotypical, or a good cultural representation?

     Mariachi groups perform all over the Borderland every week. ABC 7 spoke to a few of these performers about what they think of this year's Mexico Barbie.

     The Mexico Barbie for 2014 IS described as wearing a "fitted black bolero jacket and cropped trousers trimmed in intricate golden brocade" along with a sombrero, boots and a pink tie.

     2012's Mexico Barbie wore a folkorico-inspired pink dress and had a chihuahua for a pet. It generated a lot of controversy for being a stereotype.

     So is this year's version more authentic? ABC 7 talked to those closest to the heart of it.

     ABC 7 talked with members of a couple of local mariachi groups, including the Mariachi Los Mineros student group at the University of Texas at El Paso, and Mariachi Alegre. Both are mixed gender groups.

     Members of both groups preferred the new Barbie over the 2012 one.

     "They seem to have gotten pretty close," said Hector Rodriguez with Mariachi Alegre. "Some of the girls in the group like it, so ... I don't play with dolls, but I'm not offended."

     But the devil can be in the details.

     "Initially I was pretty excited about it, because you know it's pro-Mexico," said Megan Fuentes of Mariachi Los Mineros. "I've been a mariachi my whole life. There's just minor details about it that for the most part are just nit-picking. The sombrero's on backwards, maybe the skirt's a little short? But really really overall, it's just nit-picking and I think it's a good idea. I think it's a good encompassment of what it is to be a mariachi in Mexico."

    ABC 7 also posted the question to our Facebook page, and got a lot of responses.

Joseph Hector Gonzales Jr. said "Why not?? They have always had barbies with international costumes!"

Jerry Davis said "It's pretty ridiculous. Mariachis are short fat men."

     What do you think? You can comment on our Facebook page and on our website to add your voice.

     Mariachi Barbie will be available the day before Sept. 16 - 16 de Septiembre - Mexican Independence Day, listed online for about $25.

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