Mattel "Bottle Time Baby" doll advert (1985)

This is a commercial from 1985 but it’s interesting to see that the producers seemed to think that girls in trousers couldn’t sell baby dolls. That sunset colored dress looks like something out of America’s Most Beautiful Baby pageant, and the blue colored dress looks like Carol Anne’s pajamas from “Poltergeist”.
Bottle Time Baby

What? How do girls in pants have anything to do with this commercial?

Your objection is that the two little girls, in a commercial for a baby doll, in 1985, is that they’re wearing girly dresses?

Wow! That’s nitpicking taken to an impressive and entirely new level.

And this objection is coming from someone named “Princess Perfume”.

My daughter was 2-3 years old in 1985, so that commercial would have been targeted directly at her (and my wife and me as her own personal bank.) I can assure you that little girls dressing up in frilly dresses and playing mommy with dolls was not made up out of nowhere by advertising people and simply forced on American children.

It’s just the very “Pleasantville”/Buddy Holly retro vibe that i find questionable. I was a kid in the 1980s and most girls in my suburban area didn’t wear dresses unless it was for a wedding or something.

and to answer a question from the Mod - “Princess Perfume” is a ironic joke cause i’m not that girly.

To be clear, I wasn’t speaking as a mod, there. When I am, I’ll put something like [Moderating] at the top of the post. The rest of the time, I’m just another poster, no different from any other member of this message board who happens to be incredibly smart, handsome, and charming.

And remember that the commercial wasn’t aimed at children of the 1980s. Three-year-olds don’t spend much money. The commercial was aimed at the parents of those kids, who grew up decades earlier, so of course it’s going to look retro.

And you can’t see that the girls wearing pants weren’t really the target here?

Those girls were also subjected to targeted ads at this time. But, Y’know, not for prissy baby dolls.

It was early in the evolution of accepting there were both types of girls, and both were being actively pitched product to. But it would be a few years yet till they understood girls in pants ALSO could like baby dolls.

It ‘feels’ retro because it IS retro.
Buddy Holly? Get a grip! You’re off by decades.
Pleasantville ? That’s your projection of a Hollywood archetype and nothing more.

My daughter was quite the “tomboy” (she could scale the 60’ trees in the park in less than a minute). She would wear nothing but dresses til she was seven.

She would have fed that baby doll, taken it out in a toy stroller, and ended up smashing it over the head of one of the boys on our block.

I was using Pleasantville and Buddy Holly as a shorthand for the 1950s, I agree with the Mod that the advert is designed to evoke the childhood of the Boomer parents watching, not the 1980s childhood of Judith Barsi and her co-kid in the ad.