Allan Is The Moment
Barbie fans are all in for Allan!
Barbies are nice, and Kens can be fun, but the doll that really stole the show in Barbie was Allan. Michael Cera’s neurotic, fidgety sidekick never fully fit into Barbieland, much like his oft-overlooked real-life counterpart. But that awkwardness is actually what made him the true fan-favorite breakout of the movie. After Barbie premiered, social media exploded with memes celebrating everyone’s new relatable king: Cera’s pleasant, vanilla doll Allan.
Spoiler alert: This post discusses some plot points from Barbie. For decades, Allan has existed solely as the butt of a tired joke. Mattel introduced him as “Ken’s buddy,” with the now-iconic tagline: “All of Ken’s clothes fit him.” As you might imagine, this caused the Allan doll to go down in LGBTQ+ history, even if that wasn’t Mattel’s intent.
But Cera’s version of Allan adds new layers to the discontinued doll. He’s perpetually uneasy, an odd duck out among the Kens, and although they tend to overlook him, a devoted ally to the Barbies. He kind of exists as a living antithesis to the gender binary in Barbieland, unable to find a place either in the Barbie-run Barbieland or the Ken-ruled Kendom. Naturally, that gender-nonconforming aspect was going to make him a favorite for a lot of fans, but it was the added weirdness that only Cera could bring to the character that really made Allan everyone’s Barbie highlight.
In the wake of Barbie’s cultural dominance, Allan has arisen as the most relatable and beloved part of the movie for tons of fans.
Cera explained Allan’s unique relationship with the other dolls in a July 10 ScreenRant interview, saying that he played Allan as if he was fully invested in Ken’s happiness... even if it meant not being able to be around him. “Well, the way I read it in the script was that Allan is sort of obsessed with Ken, if not in love with him,” Cera said. “I love that he just wants the best for Ken, even if that means Ken not being near him. He wants Ken's happiness. I thought that was sort of a life of servitude in a way. Distant yearning.”
Well, Allan may still be yearning for Ken, but now he has millions of his own fans who think he’s the number-one doll-boy.