It’s been a while since I’ve down a Walking the Toy Aisle post. It’s not that I don’t like doing it, I actually really like doing them. The problem recently has been this: there’s been nothing very new, exciting or interesting on the shelves for a long, long time. Recently, my mom and I took a shopping trip to our local toy stores. Surprisingly, the shelves were stocked with a few new items that I thought warranted this Walking the Toy Aisle post!
Let’s start with Flynn. How cool is his face mold?! I love how screen accurate they got his angular face. It even has his roguish grin! For a doll, he’s quite handsome!
This is a Barbie/Skipper 2 Pack. I’m happy Mattel has decided to start giving Skipper different clothing, because as you know, much of what past releases wore was far too similar for my tastes, but I still wish Mattel would take a few more chances. It’s about time that Skipper got a new hair-do or at least some different make up. Also, does it seem like her head is too big for her shoulders or that she’s losing her neck?
Hasbro’s Disney Princess Magical Story Skirt dolls definitely fall under the ‘interesting’ category. I really like the concept– that you can use the water wand to fill in the white portion of the princess’s skirts. Not to mention, Merida is just plain adorable with her round face and wild hair!
Shoppies, the fashion doll spin-off of the ever popular Shopkins, did better than I expected during their first wave. Here are three new Shoppies to collect. The second wave of these dolls seems much cuter than the first, in my opinion.
Usually when I place a styling head on these posts, it’s because the size or look of it is laughable. However, I kind of adore this Pinkie Pie Sweet Style styling head! At the My Little Pony Fair, I saw a handful of customs made from this large, full body pony. They were amazing looking. What I love about this styling head is that Pinkie has a body and is sitting in a position that could easily make her work as far more than just a styling head. How cute would she be sitting on a writers desk, for example!
I could very easily fall into collecting the mini Equestria Girls. They’re adorable and would look perfect hanging out with my Pinky ST characters.
Barbee0913 did a review on the Make It Pop line. I’m interested in seeing what happens with this line.
As promised, the new body types for Barbie are getting some outfits, as seen in these doll/outfit packs. I’m not crazy about all outfits or, to be honest, all the new body types. These doll/outfit sets are nice, though, and I can see them being great birthday gifts.
So, there you have it! As we move into fall, I expect we’ll be seeing a lot of new and exciting things. One thing that has surprised me over various shopping trips has been the lack of new Monster High and Ever After High dolls. It’s almost like Mattel figured that it would be a good idea to dial down the old style Monster High releases for 2016, so the new rebranded ones weren’t so shocking to casual shoppers. As of this post, I have seen a few blogs and facebook groups saying that the new ‘Welcome to Monster High’ style dolls have been seen in or around their town, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see what the rest of 2016 brings.
Have you seen anything interesting or cool at your local toy shop? Share it in the comment area!
Last year, I wasn’t allowed to attend Hasbro’s Toy Fair events. They don’t officially participate in New York Toy Fair, but set up a private showroom and host various events. This year, I was excited to be formally invited to one of these events. It was hosted on the coldest day NYC had seen for years, literally. After standing outside in the cold for about 10 minutes, they finally let us in and sat us in the theater. There, we were introduced to some of the brand new products in popular lines, such as Transformers, Star Wars and My Little Pony. A good portion of the event attendees were male, which shocked me, but if you look at Hasbro’s catalog, many of their tops brands are aimed at the male market (however much it pains me to use gender terms when it comes to toys).
Of course, I got a huge kick out of the My Little Pony presentation, where we were shown a clip from the upcoming season of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and heard a few words from the Executive Producer, Meghan McCarthy. (I was a little star struck.) We weren’t allowed to film any of this, but honestly, most of the brands they spoke about weren’t my cup of tea.
I saw so much at Hasbro that this post could easily become a book! For that reason, I highly recommend you check out the videos I shot during the event and take a peek at the flickr album I set up with pictures. We’ll start with My Little Pony. My Little Pony is still flying high at Hasbro. On display were mini figures, G4 ponies, Equestria Girls and mini Equestria Girls. They also had a new interactive plush they demo’d.
These ponies have a hole in their cutie mark that allows you to see a scene when you look through it, as I understand it! Also on display were articulated ponies.
This Guardians of Harmony line of adventure/fantasy themed figures is super cool.They’re totally worth displaying and have a unique look to them. I usually don’t take notice of G4 releases, but this one definitely caught my eye.
The Equestria Girls were on display, but what caught my eye were the Mini Equestria Girls. They’re adorable. They remind me of Pinky ST figures in a weird way.
How cute is Fluttershy in this set?!
This was the biggest playset on display for them. It’s a party themed set that comes with a tripod for your camera, so the party has its very own photobooth. It even includes props for the Equestria Girls to hold!
And then there’s the normal Equestria Girls. These tie in with a new movie we’ll be seeing later this year. I’m still very proud that Hasbro switched out the peg feet for normal legs and shoes. They earned a gold star for that move. This line wouldn’t be around if they hadn’t rethought the design.
They had a large amount of toys on display that were tie in’s for the new Trolls movie. You can see those in the video tours. Moving ahead, one of my favorite pieces in the entire Hasbro Showroom was Torch, the Baby Dragon from FurReal. He’s adorable and I want him. You have to see him in action in the demo video. He “breathes fire” and will toast his own marshmallow. Seriously, we all need a pet dragon like him.
Baby Alive is still going strong, as well. There were a number of them on display. I recorded the demo’s for you to watch.
Elena of Avalor is going to be a huge property in 2016 and beyond. It’s a spin-off of Sofia the First, an adorable show on Disney Junior. Most of the companies with toys had a strict no photo’s policy, but Hasbro had theirs on display.
And the Disney Princesses weren’t left out of the fun, either!
Due to the weird scheduling of the event, I didn’t have time to talk to the Disney Princess rep about the line’s specific’s for 2016, but it looks like they have a ton planned. You’ll be seeing more on the Princesses later and of course, you can learn about Disney toys on my About.com page!
I did run over and chat with the Descendants rep who showed me some super cute editions that we’ll be seeing in 2016. They’re taking inspiration from the animated shorts, Descendants: Wicked World. There are new villains like Captain Hooks daughter, CJ, and Dr. Facilier’s daughter, Freddie. (Dr. Facilier is the shadow man in Princess and the Frog.) They’re also introducing Jordan, the daughter of Genie and Ally, the daughter of Alice. (See promo photos on Disney Toys on About)
Mal and Evie are getting a cool release. Themed around the Neon Lights dance, these dolls have light up elements sewn into their outfits, which you’ll see demo’d in the videos linked at the bottom of this post. I think they’re styling is done rather well, too. There are other dolls in this line, but they don’t have the light up elements, just very bright, fluorescent outfits. Also on display was a ‘Genie Chic‘ line which features many of the new characters.
So there you have it, some highlights from the Hasbro showroom. You can see more pictures on my flickr. I invite you all to watch the video presentations I recorded while talking to the reps. You’ll see other items I didn’t cover in this post.
Do you see anything that you’ll be picking up in 2016? Share it in the comment area!
I know Audrey is the ‘mean girl’ of Descendants, but I have to say, she’s the prettiest doll in Hasbro‘s Descendants Coronation series. Audrey, the daughter of Sleeping Beauty, is the most popular girl at Auradon Prep, a high school for the sons and daughters of heroes.
Her doll is adorable. She looks like she just stepped out of an animated Disney movie! It doesn’t at all remind me of her TV Movie persona, but you know what? I don’t care. Her doll is probably my most favorite of the entire line so far.
Audrey has a lovely coffee colored skin tone. She has a jointed vinyl body with joints at her shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips and knees. Her head moves fluidly left and right, up and down.
By far, my favorite thing about the doll version of this made for TV movie character is her face. Hasbro made a great creative choice by choosing to make the Descendants dolls in a cartoon-like manner. In Audrey’s case, she has large, anime inspired chocolate brown eyes. Above her eyes is a layer of light pink. She has a heart shaped face with an open mouth grin.
Audrey’s hair is styled in a surprisingly well done up do. She has a head of chestnut brown hair with tan highlights. Audrey’s hair is pulled up into a side bun with a loose ringlet hanging down on either side of her face. There is a small plastic crown in her hair, held in with string.
Audrey’s coronation dress is a long pink dress with cap sleeves. The skirt uses two different fabrics, which adds some depth to it. She wears a bracelet, which seems like it’s molded to fit her forearm, making it non-removable. (Note: Apparently, you can take off their hands, so you can then take off their bracelets.) She also wears red flower earrings and a necklace. Her necklace has a bad habit of spinning around and falling off.
Her shoes are white heels with blue bird like details. The detail matches her purse, which has the same blue bird on the pink purse. The one downside of her purse is that it is kind of useless. It is just molded plastic. It is very pretty, though. I love the color combinations on the purse. Audrey comes with a ring for the a real kid to wear. It’s very small and this is coming from a girl with very tiny fingers. I don’t think this ring will easily fit many of the older children who may buy Audrey.
Overall, there are a lot of positives about Coronation Audrey. Her face is super pretty and her hair is very well done. Her outfit is a great color for her skin tone, as well.
One thing Hasbro has to work on is the female body they’re using so far for the line. Audrey will pose, but could move more fluidly. I had to really work at getting Audrey’s right leg to bend, to the point that I thought I may break it. Another smaller aspect I think Hasbro needs to work on are the girls hands. They look a little off. (But that may be just me who thinks that!)
This product was sent to me for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.
It’s time to review Hasbro’s Disney’s Descendant 2-pack with Mal and Ben! Mal, Maleficent’s daughter, and Ben, the son of Beauty and the Beast, (spoiler alert) share a budding romance in the Disney Channel TV movie about the teenage descendants of everyone’s favorite heroes and villains.
Let’s start with Ben. There’s something great about the design of this Ben doll. Yes, he looks like a total cartoon character, but you know what? I love it! Unlike the girls, Ben has molded brown hair with some light brown highlights painted in the front. I’m actually fine with the molded hair. Many times, companies just don’t root and style boys hair properly when they try to use ‘real’ hair.
His long face features two thick painted eye brows, large eyes and a friendly smile. He looks like a very handsome animated prince and fits in well with the girls.
I’m on the fence about the quality of Ben’s outfit. It almost has a ‘craft project’ sort of feel to it. The asymmetry of the collar is cool, but the blue fabric used to make the jacket with the attached white shirt is super thin and looks a little cheap. That being said, it fits him well.
Moving on to this body, Ben has joints in different places than the female Descendants dolls. Ben’s head moves like the girls, fluidly in all directions. He has joints in his shoulders and elbows, but not his wrists. Ben also has joints in his hips, knees and ankles. I really, really miss the wrist joint. Doll companies don’t realize how important it is to have a wrist joint, especially on the male dolls, when posing them for photos.
Ben comes wearing a solid pair of black dress shoes, a gold crown upon his head and a rose in hand for his lady love, Mal.
Mal has a head of black and purple hair. It’s cut short in the back with long curls in the front. Surprisingly, it’s not sprayed down as much as I expected. The style is different, but I kind of like it.
Her heart shaped face is decked out for an afternoon date with Ben. Above her large, brown anime-esc eyes is a creamy pink shadow and long, thin purple brows. Her painted lashes are long. Mal has a light blush on her round cheeks and has a tight plum colored smile. The colors look great on her pale skin.
Mal wears a super cute light purple dress with short sleeves and a layered skirt. It’s a cute, innocent look for Mal, the daughter of one of the most villainous villains. The muted color scheme of her outfit is a surprise, but looks great with her hair.
Mal wears gold shoes with purple accents. They are wedges, which make them great when it comes to posing her. She stands on her own better than Evie.
One thing that I have to complain about when it comes to Mal is her body. It has more issues than the other Descendants girls I have tested. First, Mal’s elbows have a tendency to hyper extend. Second, because Mal was positioned in the box to look like she was holding Ben’s hand, her strangely long fingers are now bent in a weird way. Last, her hand sculpt is a little weird.
This is a pretty cute 2-pack. Mal and Ben look good together and, in general, I like this set. Ben’s look may be a bit polarizing to the masses, but I am a fan of his cartoonish design. And Mal? Besides the issues I have with her body, her sculpt is nice and I like her anime-esc expression.
More Pictures can be seen here. Video Review:
What do you think of the Mal and Ben Descendants 2-pack? Share your thoughts below.
*This product was sent to me for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.
Hasbro had a table featuring the 2015 My Little Pony/Equestria Girls line at the My Little Pony Fair. Here are some of my favorite pieces on display.
Friendship Games, Equestria Girls:
Other Equestria Girls:
G4 My Little Pony:
Watch the trailer for My Little Pony: Equetria Girls- Friendship Games below.
For a few more photo’s, visit my Flickr page (click ‘right’ in the slideshow). Are you looking forward to any My Little Pony releases this year? Share your thoughts below.