A few weekends ago, we stopped by an antique mall. In one of the small rental booths, there were some pink box Barbie’s. One of those Barbie’s was the officially licensed POG Fun Barbie, released in 1995. For the readers who grew up in the 90’s, you know exactly what I’m talking about when I say POG. The younger crowd, however, may be scratching their heads. Here’s a quick rundown on the game that took over the nation (and the world) in the early 90’s.
The name POGs originated from a fruit beverage sold in Hawaii that contained three fruits: Passion Fruit, Orange and Guava. Keep the first letter of each fruit and you get POG. The drinks had bottle caps that people would use to play Milk Caps, a popular game that originated in Maui, Hawaii sometime in the 1920’s. The game was popular enough that it spawned milk cap collectors, but wasn’t a huge game outside of the island state.
Fast forward to 1991, when a school teacher in Oahu, Hawaii decided to use POGs to help her kids grasp math, as well as give them a non-violent recess activity. The game caught on quickly and gained popularity again in Hawaii, eventually spreading to the pacific coast of North America. From there, it took over the entire nation. Companies used POGs to advertise their businesses, movies and television shows made POGs for their characters, even events like the OJ Simpson trial warranted POGs with key phrases from the case and/or the murder weapons! You name it, there’s probably a POG for it.
Game play is simple. You stack POGs face down in a pile. From there, you take a slammer, a thicker, heavier POG shaped circle, and ‘slam’ it into the pile. Whatever POGs land face up are yours. The winner has the most POGs at the end of the game. And that’s it! That’s the game that swept the nation from 1992 to the late 90’s. It was, essentially, the Pokemon Go of the 90’s, though Pokemon Go’s popularity died down much quicker than the POG craze.
So, moving to Mattel, in 1995, they released the officially licensed POG Fun Barbie, under the approval of the World POG Federation. A pink box Barbie, she has all the markings of a doll made in the 90’s. Meaning, she has a nice quality body with solid (not hollow feeling) limbs, a soft head of nicely rooted (and crimped) blonde hair and a pretty, non-inflated face. I love pink box Barbie faces. They look animated, with large, round eyes. I like the make up choices they made here with POG Fun Barbie, too. It’s pretty basic, with blue mascara and shimmery pink eye shadow. Best of all, Barbie looks friendly, which can’t be said about all the current releases.
She wears a colorful crop top with alternating, brightly colored stripes. Of course, there’s a Barbie decal on her shirt. She wears a polka dot skirt/striped shorts combo and pink shoes. To complete the look, Mattel gave Barbie POG inspired earrings, a pink ring and a headband that matches her polka dot skirt. Barbie comes with one special slammer and five cardboard POGs. Her plastic purse holds these POGs perfectly!
I think POG Fun Barbie is a cute looking pink box doll. Do you have this Barbie? Did you get sucked into the POG craze? Share your thoughts below!