Friday, September 16, 2011

Monster High 2011

First off, I have a little announcement. Due to my commitment to , I will no longer be covering anything comic book related on this blog. At first, you may think "Wait, that's like ALL you talk about," but when you think about it, I discuss a lot more; toys, cartoons, tv shows, etc. And MANic Monday! There's always that! Don't worry, I'll still be gushing about comics, just not here. You know where to find me!

So today's topic has nothing to do with comics or science fiction... well, like barely, but it's the new Monster High dolls!

They're just starting to hit in full force, but for the past few months, they have been hard to come by! First we have Frankie Stein, the daughter of Frankenstein and his Bride. She is the star of the line, so she is shipping heavier than many of the others, which once again is a mistake, because it's not about who Mattel thinks is the star! Fans of this line want all the characters equally or they want their favorite, which may not be Frankie!

But that's not her fault! Frankie is fun! I like her hair style better than the first year doll's. She maintains the "school girl" look, this time in an argyle sweater vest and preppy patterned shirt dress. I hate her mismatched leggings. Not only is one leg silver and the other black, but they're different lengths! The devil's in the details with this line. Her plaid pumps have long bolts as heels! (A recurring theme in the line!) She's not as exciting as all-new characters, but I like her new look just fine.

Along the same lines, Cleo DeNile is the line's main "bad girl" and once again, I think that's a bungle on Mattel's part. While pretty, she's just not "monstrous!" She just looks like a normal, pretty girl! In the first year, she was packaged with Deuce Gorgon a boy doll and the pair sold dismally. The same is true of her subsequent dolls in the Dawn of the Dance and Gloom Beach assortments.

Her new look is eye-catching and maintains a similar color scheme to the first year doll. Her turquoise top reflects bandaging, as does the patterns on her arm warmers and around her knees. That's... cute, I suppose, but she's supposed to BE a mummy, not just reference one.

But anyway, she seems to have more turquoise in her hair than the previous version, however when buying her, I noticed that that varied from doll to doll, so not every one has as much turquoise as mine. Once again, great detailing! Her belt resembles an ancient Egyptian loincloth. Her bracelets are triangular, referencing the pyramids and my favorite detail, possibly out of all the dolls, her heels are tiny hourglasses!

Next up is Clawdeen Wolf, who frustratingly wears a tiger striped shirt. I seriously think the creators are confused that a wereWOLF is not a form of feline! But anyway. She sports a cute ponytail. I don't love her outfit. It's really 80s and almost UGLY! I like her purple skinny jeans, but that top is pretty gross. Is it insane to say that she just has this air of confidence that makes it work? Quite an achievement for a piece of plastic. Great details, again. Her heels are long gold talons and she has a brass-knuckles-like ring with claws on it.

Next we have Draculaura and Clawd Wolf. Let's start with Draculaura, already a favorite from the first assortment, I absolutely adore her new goth-meets-Harjuku outfit! She has that Victorian look up top with the tiny pink ribbon/tie, lace trim on her collar, frilly sleeves, then the lacy tiered lower part. The yellow and pink polka dotted tights pop wonderfully. Her shoes are super cute, with a tiny yellow button detail. Her heels are textured, but I don't think they're supposed to be anything, so that's disappointing. Her earrings do look like little bats hanging upside down, though, so that's charming and I love that her parasol is open, since the first year doll's was not open-able.

She accompanies Clawd Wolf, Clawdeen's brother (they have numerous siblings, having been born in a litter, so we may see more as the line continues). He's the cutest boy doll in the line so far although his groomed sideburns annoy me. His costume is likewise super cute, with nice details. His shirt is a fun print and he wears a cool turquoise and black checkered ascot with a jagged edge. His gold vest likewise has white lapels that are also jagged. He wears skinny jeans with turquoise threading down the seam and fashionably distressed gold high tops. His turquoise cap matches his belt which has a gold crescent moon buckle, which is a nice little wink. He includes his pet gargoyle dog, Rockseena, which is apparently delicious as Jelly Bean chewed his leg off.

The last of the re-issues is Lagoona Blue, the daughter of the Sea Creature. She was one of my favorites in the first line, but this one falls flat. Her right hand is remolded into a "hang loose" gesture. Her turquoise dress is just kind of boring. The metallic ruffle at the bottom has a mermaid-like scale pattern to it and the whole outfit is accented with fishnet. Get it? The real doll, does NOT have that black and white (?) polka dot pattern on it. It's replaced with just the metallic scale fabric. (Unless there are variations out there.) Annoyingly, she is wearing only one legging on her left leg and a sock on her right. Her earrings are fish bones. The heels of her pink jelly shoes resemble bubbles.

I'm not unhappy with her, she just doesn't excite me.

Finally, we have the highly sought-after new characters! (Well, we already had one, with Clawd Wolf, but new solo girl characters.) First is the ghost, Spectra Vondergeist. Folks are going nuts for her! She has white skin and her hands and feet are translucent. Because ghosts are known to rattle chains, that is her motif. Her purse has a chain for its handle. She has chains on the front of her bodice and around her neck. Her cuff looks like a shackle. Cutest of all, her heels are giant metal balls with chains wrapped around her boots. She also wears a faded purple skirt with glittery black mesh on top. Oh and her earrings are balls and chains.

She comes with her pet ferret, Rhuen, which is also partially transparent. And like Clawd's dog, was apparently delicious as I have no idea what fate befell him, but he is no longer with us. Overall, while I LIKE Spectra and having all new characters added, she's kind of plain, to be honest. Well, putting it in perspective, I like her better than the new Lagoona and Clawdeen, but she may rank lower than the rest.

And just now hitting stores is Abbey Bominable, the daughter of The Yetti. I LOVE Abbey! I don't get why all the fuss is over Spectra! Abbey's much better! She has sparkly blue skin to represent ice. Her sheer pink leggings are also sparkly. I LOVE her huge fur boots! She also has fur along the top of her dress, her arm warmers and headband. The pattern on her dress is very 80s and reminds me of Clawdeen's outfit, but in a pale blue, white, black and pink color scheme. Her hair is my favorite! It's white, with pink and baby blue streaks and iridescent strands throughout! It reminds me of Danse's, from Jem and I just love it and think it completes her look!

She has a pet wooly mammoth, Shiver (misspelled Shivver on the box!), but 'twould appear that Abbey herself is the morsel, as Jelly Bean mauled her and severed her hand. Don't worry, I bought a new one.

Her one fault is her earrings. Once again, the designers have gone mismatchy! Her right earring is a blue spike (icicle?) and her left is a pink snowflake. I just don't like mismatchy! Overall, though she and Draculaura are duking it out as the which is my favorite new doll.

There's not a new Ghoulia in the main set. They're still shipping the old one, along with Holt Hyde, since they were added to the first wave late. There was however a Comic Con exclusive of Ghoulia dressed as her favorite super hero Dead Fast. Ghoulia is always super cute in her nerd glasses. The costume is cute, too! It's mostly sparkly black, with red "leather" lightning bolts around her sleeves, her collar and around the hem of her tunic. Her belt is a white lightning bolt with red pods and she has tiny stylized wings on the backs of her boots. Also I like the white stripe down the front, because it reminds me of Wonder Woman.

She comes with really awesome accessories! A tiny convention pass, a copy of a Dead Fast comic (which she made herself) and a tiny sleeve to put it in, a tote bag emblazoned with her hero's picture on it, and a mint-on-card Dead Fast action figure! I wish I'd bought two! Because it's so rare, I'm not opening her, not that I plan on reselling her, but because I'd be worried about all the small pieces getting lost.

There are other new dolls as part of subsets, but I'm not buying the subsets, just the main line. I didn't even buy the Jackson Jeckyll doll, even though technically he was a new character (kinda), but he was in a bathing suit! Why would I want one doll in a bathing suit when the rest are in normal (and stylish) street clothes? Hopefully they'll reissue him in a school outfit.

I'm completely hooked on the main line! Otherwise, I may have passed on some of the re-issues, but I needed them to complete the set! And Mattel is shipping the new girls heavily, so fans have a better shot at getting them! So, good job, Mattel!

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