Walking the Toy Aisle

Since I missed out on the fun at New York Toy Fair, I thought I’d do a little sight-seeing at our local toy shops. Here are some of the highlights from the toy aisles!

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When Wicked Cool Toys first mentioned that they were doing a limited release all vinyl 18″ Cabbage Patch Kid, I liked the idea a lot. That’s why seeing her on the clearance shelf makes me kind of sad. However, I can totally understand why she’s there. At $100.00 a pop, these weren’t exactly something a family on a budget could pick up for the holidays. Even now, at $79.99, she’s still too pricey for me to even consider buying.

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I love these backdrops! One of my main problems with photographing large dolls is that I have zero backdrops that are tall enough to fit them. This seems like something to keep an eye on!

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Club Chelsea is huge. I should have placed a normal Chelsea next to her for scale. She’s about the size of the Disney Princess Toddler dolls, I think. I love this and hope they release more in this large size.

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The 25th Anniversary of Totally Hair Barbie (yes, she’s 25 years old now) is nice, but something is off about her. Her head seems too small for her body, in my opinion. I’ll stick with the original.

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Having just watched the Barbie Video Game Hero movie, I love the heads on these three dolls. They have a huge problem, though– their bodies! They’re so plastic’y. They definitely need to be put on a new body. I wonder if they match any of the Made to Move Barbies.

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Oh, look. I found Spectra. Just kidding. I know this isn’t Spectra, but come on, Ari is practically her clone.

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Silvi is a pretty nice looking Monster High, though her coloring reminds me of Ghoulia.

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This is a strange Frankie. I like her, but something about her seems off.

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This is a nice little two set with Clawdeen and Clawd.

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I also like this Mattel product in the Ever After High line. She’s articulated, which is nice, though her elbow is a little weird. I wonder if that’s to give her enough oomph to shoot the arrow?

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This new Beauty and the Beast movie is cursed with really great toys and some really poorly made toys. The baby doll is super creepy to me. She’s not pretty.

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These toddler dolls, however, are super cute! I love them, even if they look more like Ursala’s human alter ego who tried to marry Prince Eric in The Little Mermaid than Belle.

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Lalaloopsy’s seem to be disappearing at an alarming rate. It looks like they’re changing a bit, as you can see in the picture. They’re smaller with real hair. In my opinion, MGA over produced their Lala line. They over saturated their own market.

So, there you have it! That’s what caught my eye while walking the toy aisle. What have you seen recently that caught your eye? Do you see anything in this post that you like or hate? Share your thoughts in the comment area.

February 19, 2017. Tags: , , . Introductions & Reviews, Uncategorized. 13 comments.

Dolly Review: Monster High Zomby Gaga

Zomby Gaga, made in collaboration with Lady Gaga’s Born This Way foundation and Mattel, is a pretty cool looking Monster High doll. She’s probably one of the last interesting and articulated Monster High’s we’ll see, in my opinion. Since the reboot (and even before the reboot), there haven’t been many thrilling Monster High releases. Some Electrified dolls look promising, but the excitement that I felt when shopping for, say, the original Dawn of the Dance wave, just isn’t there.

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There’s a good chance that if you collect Monster High, you pre-ordered your Zomby Gaga ages ago and even got her open and out of the box already. My doll arrived a few weeks ago. I give Mattel kudo’s on her packaging. The doll is packaged in a cool triangular box. Her accessories are hidden on the bottom of the box. Zomby Gaga comes with a stand and extra outfit. Her stand is pretty horrible. It’s one of those poorly made stands that just doesn’t want to stay together.

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The extra outfit, a shirt dress and fishnets, is cute. However, it’s very short. It’s more shirt than dress. A little extra length would have made this extra outfit perfect.

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While Zomby Gaga is articulated, she has some major body issues. Similar to what others have experienced, my Zomby Gaga’s left elbow doesn’t work. When you try to bend it, the elbow joint pops out of the arm. Her outfit’s tight sleeves also hinder the shoulder joints from moving well. I’m disappointed in the poor construction of her arm joints. Mattel has been making articulated bodies for a while now and for such a huge tie-in release, they should have made sure they were putting the best product in consumers hands.

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The suit she wears in the box is stylish, even though it hinders her movement a bit. I think the collar should have been lowered a bit, as to not hide the small neck detail painted on the doll, but besides that, the look is pretty neat. I love the flair pants. And her shoes? They’re awesome.

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Zomby Gaga has long hair that is styled in a high ponytail. I like the combination of light pink and grey hair they used. It works really well with her zombie/skeleton like skin tone. Unfortunately, her hair has a tendency to fall out, at least on my doll.

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What makes this doll super cool is her face design. The details are on par with early Monster High dolls. It has depth and dimension to it, like Monster High faces should. You can tell this doll was designed before the ‘sugary sweet’ reboot was really put into play. Zomby Gaga’s eyes aren’t the cutesy anime kind that the new dolls are getting. There’s something alien about them, again, much like early Monster High dolls.

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Another nice touch are her hands, which say Lady Gaga (one word on each hand). Small details like that are getting rarer and rarer in the Monster High series. The bubble gum is a nice accessory, too.

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Overall, I’m happy they made Zomby Gaga. It was nice seeing some excitement around the line again. However, they did a huge disservice to the doll by giving her a wonky body and weak hair. But, if you’re a fan of Lady Gaga or the golden age of Monster High, you may want to add one of these to your collection. What do you think of Zomby Gaga? Did your doll come with a bad elbow? Let me know in the comment area!

February 14, 2017. Tags: , . Introductions & Reviews, Uncategorized. 16 comments.

Pre-Order Your Zomby Gaga Now

For a while now, we’ve known Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation was working in partnership with Monster High, Natali Germanotta, and Zombie Boy to create a fangtastic exclusive Monster High doll. Born This Way empowers youth to create a kinder, braver world.

Zomby Gaga is a pretty awesome looking Monster High doll. It looks like Mattel spared no expense with this release. Zomby Gaga “wears a killer black tux with flared pant legs, bell sleeves on the fitted jacket, a bow tie and the song title, Born This Way, emblazoned in the lining. Her “to-die-for accessories include suspenders with heart clips, sunglasses perched atop her head and highly detailed patent leather boots”. (Description quoted from Amazon.com) Zomby Gaga is pictured below with a removable bubble gum ‘bubble’. If she’s anything like her promo photos, this doll will surely stand out on doll shelves.

Zomby Gaga (MATTEL)

Zomby Gaga (MATTEL)

Zomby Gaga (MATTEL)

She’s set to ship early January 2017 and is on pre-order at your favorite toy stores now: Target, Walmart, YoYo and Amazon. For those abroad, I suggest checking out the Born This Way post for locations in your country.

Do you plan on pre-ordering Zomby Gaga? What do you think of her? Share your thoughts in the comment area.

October 28, 2016. Tags: , . Introductions & Reviews, Uncategorized. 4 comments.

Dolly Review: Monster High SDCC 2016 Ghostbusters Frankie

It’s been a long time since I’ve written about Monster High. Why? Since the reboot, I just haven’t been super enthralled by many of the dolls. There have been a few bright spots, like Dayna Treasura Jones, but they are few and far between. Up for review today, however, is one of the more interesting Monster High dolls to be released in 2016– the San Diego Comic Con 2016 exclusive Ghostbusters Frankie.

This Frankie isn’t super luxe or over the top, in fact she’s relatively basic when you look at her. But, it’s because the doll itself is less ‘exciting’ that the outfit and props really shine, making this one of the more unique Monster High’s produced during the series run. If memory serves me right, this is the first ‘mash up’ we’ve seen in the Monster High line. It makes me wish we’d seen more cool tie-ins when we were guaranteed releases with articulated bodies. But, let’s get onto the review, shall we?

Monster High SDCC Ghostbuster Frankie

Frankie, as I stated, is pretty basic when it comes to her face and hair. Her face is as you’d expect with large two toned eyes and her scar. It’s free of make up and has a clean, fresh look. Frankie’s hair has decently rooted highlights in black and white. They’re pulled up into a simple ponytail. And of course, she has bangs/fringe.

Monster High SDCC Ghostbuster Frankie

What makes this Frankie stand out among the rest is her super cool Ghostbusters uniform and proton pack! Frankie wears the uniform of the Ghostbusters proudly. Mattel did a great job on this element of Frankie’s look. She has the Ghostbuster logo on her shoulder and her last name printed on the front of her uniform.

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On her back is the ever important proton pack with a removable handheld ray gun that wraps around Frankie with enough room to have her hold it. Her outfit is complimented with knee high boots, a belt, a black bracelet, plastic ID/Dog tags, earrings and cool yellow glasses.

Monster High SDCC Ghostbuster Frankie

This Frankie has all the articulation you’d expect from a good, old fashioned Monster High doll, with shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip and knee joints. Her suit limits her movement a bit, but I’m so happy Mattel didn’t skimp on the body type for this exclusive! (The fingers on my Frankie are a bit hyper extended due to how she was placed in her box, so you might encounter this, as well, if you pick one up.)

One other thing they included that is worth noting is Slimer! Monster High’s Slimer is much smaller than his movie/cartoon counterpart. He’s hollow on the inside, which means you can pretend he’s ‘sliming’ someone easily by being propped on a Monster High’s hand.

Monster High SDCC Ghostbuster Frankie

Overall, I am very happy with this Frankie. I love how Mattel incorporated Ghostbusters into the Monster High line. If you search Ghostbuster Frankie on eBay there are a number of dolls available. Most are overpriced, in my opinion, since she was pretty easy to get through Matty Collector post comic con. But if you can find one for under $40.00 or so dollars, I think she’s unique enough to be worth the money.

Monster High SDCC Ghostbuster Frankie

Do you have this Frankie? What are your thoughts on her? Let me know in the comment area!

October 19, 2016. Tags: , , , , . Introductions & Reviews, Uncategorized. 6 comments.

NYTF 2016: Mattel

We’re back from the big apple! As you know, February 13-16 was one of the biggest toy trade shows in the world– New York Toy Fair. Even though it was my second year attending, I still felt overwhelmed. This year, I decided to invite Barbee0913, aka my mom, to attend with me. Trying to cover the show for one blog is a lot of work, let alone two! Over the next week or so, I’ll be putting out articles on what we saw at the show. This report features Mattel!

I’d like to say there were tons of exciting things on display, but alas, I can’t. There was a lot in the room, but not a lot when it came to what I traditionally look for– dolls! I’ll start off with the bad news.  Ever After High wasn’t represented at all. They had some standees and a handful of Dragon Games dolls on display, but nothing new. I don’t even know if they had a rep manning the booth! It makes me worry about the future of Ever After High, to be honest!

Barbie was represented well enough. They, of course, had the new Fashionista‘s on display. In person, I’m still not completely impressed. I love the variety the new bodies will introduce to the Barbie franchise, but they still aren’t articulated. If I were in charge, getting all Barbie’s to be more like the Made To Move line would be my first priority.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

Spin Art Barbie, coming in two skin tones, is kind of fun! Assuming Mattel has some refill packs or you’re crafty and can make your own outfits to use in this once you run out, this could be a fun ‘gimmicky’ Barbie for the crafty types.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

This Starlight Adventure Barbie Hoverboard ties in with a movie we’ll be seeing later this year. I quite like this cool toy! If the demonstration model works anything like the one we’ll see on store shelves, kids will probably love it. It flew really well in the showroom!

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

The Presidential 2-pack will probably be a favorite of many, as well. The president wears red, white and blue and the vice president wears yellow. What I really like about this set is that as you will see in the pictures, Mattel is playing with diversity and pairing dolls of different colors together. Also, each has a different hair style.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

The Flipping Fun Gymnast set is adorable, however gimmicky it may be. When you place Kelly (or Barbie’s student, I guess), on the balance beam and pull a lever, the talented student will flip and stick a solid landing. It’s really neat to see in person. The student character looks a little plastic, but for the effect, I can totally understand the reasoning.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

Hello Dreamhouse is the big item Mattel seems to be pushing this year. It’s an interactive talking Dreamhouse that listens to you as you speak and responds back. For example, you can say “Hello, Dreamhouse. Can you turn the bedroom light on?” and it should turn on the bedroom light. Each room has a floor switch that will allow you to turn the lights on in any room that way, as well. If you say, “It’s time for school”, the house will react with a voice responding to you and turn on the ‘shower’. It’s a neat concept and kids will probably love it. Let’s hope it’s easier to put together than the past dreamhouses!

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

The Thingmaker dates back all the way to 1964. I remember it as a Creepy Crawler maker. 2016’s Thingmaker has lost the goop and molds and gained filament and an extruder. Yep. It’s a 3D printer. Priced at $300.00, Mattel could have a winner on their hands with this. The app this works with is already available. It allows you to create pre-programmed ‘things’, choose the perfect colors and send them to the printer.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

As far as Monster High is concerned, there were some things on display. Dana Treasura Jones, daughter of Davy Jones, made her showroom debut, as well as Ari Hauntington. I love the color scheme they chose for Dana. It fits her theme perfectly. Ari, however, looks a bit like a Spectra clone.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

This is Ari. The picture directly below is an interactive Ari that will sing at different ranges as you move your hand higher and lower in front of her. (You can see this in the video.)

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

This Ari is a basic Ari. She was on display with the Draculaura and Frankie that became famous in the leaked sizzle reel about the relaunch.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

The Welcome to Monster High set, featuring Draculaura, is a cute set, but there’s not much to it.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

The set comes with the Draculaura on the left, not the one decked out on the right, ready to dance.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

A new theme for this year is “monster-cute”. These blind bag miniatures totally fit that bill. The first wave will be our favorite ghouls. Following that, they’ll have release others with different themes and patterns.

NYTF 2016: Mattel Showroom

There were many other brands on display in the Mattel Showroom. You can see pictures in my Flickr album. Below are the video presentations from the booth.

 

 

One more Mattel video will be added to my channel, featuring the new American Girl building kits. I’ll add it here soon! (Keep an eye on my channel for it!)

Also on display were the new DC dolls, which I think I’ll save for their own post. Pictures can be found in the flickr album mentioned above.

Overall, it will be interesting to see what happens with Mattel this year. What I expected to see a lot of (Ever After High and Monster High), I didn’t. Do you see anything you like? Share your thoughts below!

February 20, 2016. Tags: , , , . Toy Fair 2016, Uncategorized. 7 comments.

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