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Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse is an animated web series based on the popular Mattel franchise Barbie. It is produced by Rob Hudnut, David Wiebe and Michelle Coogan at Arc Productions and distributed by Mattel. The series premiered on the official website and YouTube on May 11, 2012 and is currently part way through its seventh season. When the show is airing, a new episode debuts each week and is translated into 21 different languages, and it is both mobile and tablet-optimized.
The series is set as a reality TV-esque show following Barbie and her friends Ken, Teresa, Nikki, Midge, Summer, Ryan and Raquelle, as well as her sisters Skipper, Stacie and Chelsea and their pets Tawny the horse, Taffy the dog and Blissa the cat in the day-to-day activities that take place in the Dreamhouse and surrounding areas.
Much of the humor in the show derives from parodying and lampooning both the traditional reality TV format and the Barbie franchise itself - the dolls, for example, are perfectly aware that they are dolls and use oversized items, warn of the dangers of cutting their hair because it never grows back and need to wear sunscreen so that they don't melt.
See also list of characters
The series has a main cast of eleven Barbie dolls, two of which are male, in addition to three Barbie doll pets, and a number of supporting and background characters who are compromised of fish, car parts, celebrities/news reporters and a sentient closet.
Age and gender
The only doll whose age is definitively known is Chelsea, who turns six during Happy Birthday Chelsea. Skipper appears to be between 15 and 17 years old, while Stacie falls somewhere in between her two sisters. The topic of Barbie's age was brought up multiple times during Gifts, Goofs, Galore, with no doll being able to provide an answer until Barbie told them at the end of the episode. Unfortunately for us, this was blocked out for the viewers by Shoe-Vacuuming Robot. Barbie has more than 43 years old as mentioned in the first episode. Ryan and Raquelle are the same age, as they are twins, and Ken, Teresa, Nikki, Midge and Summer are assumed to be around the same age as each other.
- Barbie: Let’s face it — Barbie is the doll who has it all. She’s a fashion icon who has a fab home, the best friends and the perfect guy who’s nuts about her. She’s great at everything, while remaining humble and kind, and is always there to cheer on her friends no matter the challenges. That’s why everyone loves her.
- Ken: The best boyfriend in the world, he wants to be the perfect guy to the perfect gal, but hasn’t quite got the perfection thing down the way Barbie does. He loves creating new crazy gadgets to make her life easier, but sometimes they do the opposite. Though his over-eagerness to please leads to some mishaps, his heart is always beating Ba-Ba, Ba-Ba Barbie.
- Teresa: Always there for her friends (just maybe not on time), Teresa is the mellow, live-and-let-live type. Sarcasm is lost on this boho-chic gal, who subscribes to as many conspiracy theories as she does gossip magazines. What she says is what she means… for better or for worse.
- Nikki: Smart, sassy, and totally fun to be around, Nikki is a “what you see is what you get” kind of girl. For her, no adventure is too crazy. To her friends she’s a softy, but if someone crosses one of her dolls, they’ll discover a dose of her wicked wit. And as everyone knows from her in-the-know vlog, she has her finger on the pulse of what is trending right this second.
- Ryan: Like his twin sister, Raquelle, Ryan knows he's hot. He loves showing off his plastic abs and bad boy ’tude. But this wanna-be musician doesn’t fantasize about taking Barbie down a notch (like his sis does); instead he dreams of taking her out on a date.
- Raquelle: For Raquelle, excess defines her posh lifestyle. Roughing it is not having a butler. The only thing to put a crack in her diamond sheen is Barbie. She dreams of catching her Malibu neighbor in a fashion fail and posting the pics on the web. She also wouldn’t mind stealing her boyfriend.
- Midge: (introduced in season 3) The original bestie of Barbie from Willows, Wisconsin, Midge is a throwback to the 1960s. Thanks to Barbie, she’s gone from flashback to flash fab in no time, but when she gets nervous (especially around Ryan) she reverts back to slang like groovy and threads. It’s her super smarts and quirky style that make her absolutely a-dork-able!
- Summer: (introduced in season 4) Summer is a whirlwind of energy, who only has one mode - go, go, go! The former runway model now strives to master every sport in the world. For her, even the simplest activities have ways of turning into epic contests. Some find this competitive spirit a bit too much, but Barbie just adores her undying enthusiasm.
- Skipper: The oldest of the three younger sisters of Barbie, Skipper is a tech guru/budding filmmaker. When she’s not directing her fam in her next movie masterpiece, she’s texting, gaming and talking… sometimes at the same time. Of all the sisters, she's the one who wonders, "Should I do what Barbie does or do the last thing Barbie would do?"
- Stacie: Extreme sports lover Stacie keeps everyone on their toes with her hyperkinetic energy, drill sergeant-like scheduling and entirely honest views on boring activities. She easily fits in with the guys, but doesn’t get why Skipper seems to be obsessed with them.
- Chelsea: Chelsea is the youngest of the sisters and knows how to work her cuteness well. This adorable 6-year-old always seems to come up with the exact super-cute thing to say in order to win over her sisters and their friends.
- Tawny: This noble steed of Barbie is by her mistress’s side with just a whistle. Living the fab life with Barbie has certainly gone to her head. She is lovably neurotic about her looks — from her immaculate mane to her designer horseshoes.
- Taffy: The pampered pooch of Barbie isn’t just fond of the finer things like filet mignon and doggy spas, but also has a sophisticated taste for art and literature. She loves nothing more than a good chew toy, classical music and a nice long belly rub.
- Blissa: Blissa, the fickle feline, always purrs for Barbie, but everyone else has to be on alert. She’ll either snuggle up with Dreamhouse guests or turn their pant legs into scratching posts.
- Main article: Episodes
- Kate Higgins as Barbie
- Sean Hankinson as Ken
- Katie Crown as Teresa
- Nakia Burrise as Nikki
- Haviland Stillwell as Raquelle and Tawny, Taffy and Blissa (when translated)
- Charlie Bodin as Ryan
- Paula Rhodes as Skipper and Stacie
- Laura Gerow as Chelsea
- Ashlyn Selich as Midge
- Tara Sands as Summer
- Lillian Sofia as Grace
- Todd Resnick as Closet
- Grant George as Randy Bravo
- David Wiebe as Reporter
The voice work is provided by the Los Angeles-based Resnick Interactive Group.