Ryan Gosling as Ken in the upcoming Barbie movie

Ryan Gosling Had a Wonderfully Bizarre Way of Accepting His Role as Ken in the ‘Barbie’ Movie

Ryan Gosling has been having quite the time. Doing promo for his new movie The Gray Man from the Russo Bros., which stars him, Chris Evans, Regé-Jean Page, Ana de Armas, and more, he has been getting quite the influx of questions about his upcoming film Barbie, where he’s playing Ken. Yes, Ken as in Barbie’s boyfriend who she famously dumped on Valentine’s Day in 2004. What’s been great about Gosling answering questions about the movie is that he’s given us a LOT of information about himself. Like how he has “Ken-ergy” and has always had Ken inside him.

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Now though, he has taken to The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, where he shared an image of a Ken doll he found in his backyard after he was offered the role of Ken, and … that was the way he told Greta Gerwig that he was going to be her Ken. According to Gosling, he walked out into his yard and found the doll there. “I walk out in the backyard and, do you know where I found Ken? Face down in the mud next to a squished lemon.”

Gosling went on to say that he texted the picture to Gerwig, saying, “I shall be your Ken, for this story must be told.” The story being the Ken doll face down in the mud with a squished lemon, obviously. Now, if we don’t find out how that Ken got in Gosling’s back yard in Barbie, I’m going to be mad. But then again, Gosling did say that the script for Barbie (which was co-written by Gerwig and her partner, Noah Baumbach) was “the best script [he’d] ever read,” so I’m sure it does explain this Ken’s origin.

Gosling is clearly excited to play Ken in the film. “Finally, it’s happening. This has been coming my whole life,” Gosling told Variety, on The Gray Man red carpet, about playing Ken. “I felt like I was seeing myself [when I saw the viral first look Ken photo]. I felt seen. I think a lot of Kens will feel seen when they see this. Gotta do it for the Kens. Nobody plays with the Kens.”

The legacy of Ken

One thing about Gosling is that he also calls out bullshit when he sees it. He’s also said that he knows that Ken is not anyone’s favorite and … well, he’s right. It’s Barbie’s world, and Ken’s just living in it. But the bleach blonde look with the underwear showing, which say “Ken” on them? That’s all just making this Ken better than any of the other Kens before him.

I hope that Gosling Ken is a himbo. I hope that Barbie is smart and savvy and Ken is just along for the ride. It’s what Barbie deserves, what fans of Barbie deserve, and honestly what Ken deserves, too. If it is true that there are multiple versions of Ken, with Gosling, Simu Liu, and Ncuti Gatwa, I hope they’re all just these boys in love with their Barbies because. After all, she’s a Barbie Girl in a Barbie World.

(featured image: Warner Bros.)


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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.