In any case, now it's my turn to take a look at the Disney Store and Jakks Pacific interpretations of Tinker Bell's wintery sister, Periwinkle:
|Periwinkle dolls by Jakks Pacific (left), $14.99 and the Disney Store (right), $14.95.|
I'm really glad Melissa started her review by summarizing the different types of Jakks Pacific Fairies dolls, because looking at these dolls in the store was how I first started to become interested in the Disney Fairies franchise. Actually, it was one specific Tinker Bell doll that stopped me in my tracks and got me to look more closely at the Fairies section...
It's not hard to understand why that particular doll was on clearance.
But...I'm happy about Tink's wardrobe malfunction because it caused me to stop and notice some of the other Fairies sets. This is when I first saw the highly articulated Periwinkle and Tinker Bell dolls and started to think about writing a comparison review.
I also took a few pictures of the less-articulated Jakks dolls that Melissa was telling you about. Here's a big boxed set (of the Classic dolls? Basics?) that was available exclusively at Toys R Us:
The Periwinkle doll in this set has molded pants and a fabric dress. The other dolls have all-fabric outfits. I find it interesting that these less expensive dolls have different (better?) faces than the highly-articulated Deluxe dolls.
|That's a bad picture...but a really cute face.|
There's no teenaged mean girl in this Tink's face--just a (slightly blank) sweetness:
|Not as sweet as the Disney Store's Tink, though.|
As Melissa noted, many of the Jakks Pacific dolls are marked up in stores (and especially online) right now. For example, the articulated Deluxe dolls have a MSRP of $14.99, but cost $16.99 at Toys R Us, $17.49 at Target, and up to $30-40 on Amazon (depending on the character).
In contrast, the Disney Store recently put all of their Fairies on sale for $8.95...which is what inspired me to purchase my Periwinkle:
In contrast, the Disney Store recently put all of their Fairies on sale for $8.95...which is what inspired me to purchase my Periwinkle:
The Disney Store's Periwinkle doll.
For those who haven't seen any of the Disney Fairies movies yet, the picture of Periwinkle on the box will give you a good idea of what the character and her outfit are supposed to look like:
I agree with Melissa that de-boxing the Disney Store fairy was pretty simple. I did not uncover any pleasant or unpleasant surprises when I was getting Peri out of her box.
Like all of the rubber-legged Disney Store dolls, though, Periwinkle can not stand on her own. I used an Ever After High stand to prop her up:
Like Tinker Bell, this doll has a sweet, simple, movie-accurate face:
Here's a poor-quality screen shot from The Secret of the Wings for comparison:
The Disney Store really did a fantastic job of capturing Periwinkle's personality in this face mold. Everything--the shape of her eyes, the tilt in her thin eyebrows, her lopsided grin--is just right.
And, like Tink, Periwinkle has wonderful long pointed ears, which is perfect for
a Vulcan a fairy!
Which are a little easier to see with the hair tucked out of the way:
Periwinkle's hairstyle is not quite as accurate to the movie as her face mold, but it's a good approximation. Here's a screen shot of the original hair:
The doll's hair relies on an overabundance of hair gel to keep all of the strands sticking up. There's no wispy, pixie feel to the style, though.
All of the hair is pulled straight up and chopped into a blunt wedge:
|Reminds me of an onion.|
I think the overall effect is good, though:
Peri has side-glancing blue eyes that are not at all wonky.
Extremely close inspection reveals some small hairs trapped in the eye paint, but these are hard to see under normal magnification.
Periwinkle's quirked smile is painted a natural peach color and has a subtle gloss:
One odd feature of my doll is that she has several hair fibers trapped in her neck joint. I assumed these would be easy to pull out...but I have not been able to yank them free yet. I guess I'll snip them with scissors.
Periwinkle is wearing a turquoise blue leaf dress with a feathery white underskirt. The cut of the dress in back accommodates the wings very naturally:
The leaf-shaped skirt lifts up to reveal the full underskirt:
|Notice that the leaf portion of the skirt is fully-lined.|
In the movie, the white part of the dress is made out of feathers. The doll skirt has the right look, but oh man--this thing sheds like crazy. It reminds me of a small white dog I know.
Those fluffy white bits get everywhere and stick to everything. It might be worse than glitter.
The leaf portion of the skirt is really nice, though. The veining pattern is embroidered into a velvety, multi-colored blue background:
The whole dress is very soft and looks great...I just wish it wasn't coming to pieces before my very eyes.
Under the dress, Periwinkle is wearing simple capri-length pants with jagged-cut, unfinished legs:
In the movie, these pants are made out of leaves, but that level of detail has been (understandably) left out.
Periwinkle has the blue version of Tink's pom-pom shoes (notice all of the white fluff from the skirt stuck to the shoes...):
Here are the shoes de-fluffed and on their own:
|Well...partially de-fluffed, I guess.|
Periwinkle's body has a similar style to the click-kneed Disney Princesses from the Disney Store, but it's lacking wrist articulation and is smaller in scale.
Here she is next to a click-kneed Rapunzel from the Disney Store:
|Perfect little sister height.|
Peri has nine points of articulation--eleven if you count her fluttering wings:
Speaking of the wings, I think the wing mechanism is great. It is a little awkward to use because you have to brace the doll with your hand and get a single finger in between the wings to press the button, but I love the simplicity of the design (no batteries!) and the added fun of the movement.
The animation of the wings in the Fairies movies is very well-done (with neat sound effects) and so I imagine that this is a feature many kids will want to replicate in their games.
I wanted to replicate it in a short movie:
I made this clip at the very end of the review--after I had taken Periwinkle's hair down--so apologies for the disconnect.
The rest of Periwinkle's articulation is the same as other Disney Store dolls. She can do great splits but can't quite bend her elbows to a 90 degree angle.
The flexibility of the click knees seems even more limited with this doll than it is with the larger Disney Princesses. I could only get the knees to click into one bent position.
This makes Periwinkle's legs stick out quite a bit when she's sitting in a chair:
I rummaged around to see what other dolls I could find that are similar in size and height to Periwinkle. She's shorter than a Bratzillaz doll with much smaller feet:
|Disney Store's Periwinkle, Bratzillaz Meygana.|
Meygana can wear Peri's dress, but it's a little big. Periwinkle has trouble sharing any kind of clothes because of her permanently-attached wings. I suspect that even if I could get Meygana's dress on over Periwinkle's wings, the fit would be too tight.
Periwinkle is even more similar in size and proportion to a Moxie Girlz doll:
|Disney Store Periwinkle, Moxie Girlz doll.|
These two brands would be able to share clothes nicely if it weren't for Periwinkle's wings (I had a small casting change here for the Moxie Girlz so that I could use Kellan's easier-to-manage clothes:
|Periwinkle wearing Moxie Girlz Kellan's clothes and vice versa.|
The Project Mc2 dolls, while quite a bit taller than the Fairies, are also similar through the torso and can share some clothes. Here's Periwinkle with Bryden:
|Project Mc2 Bryden and Disney Store Periwinkle.|
Not only does Bryden look great as a mermaid, but she makes an amazing fairy, too! This girl was meant to live in the fantasy realm.
Despite Bryden's lack of articulation, I love this doll more and more every day.
I tried some Project Mc2 pants and shorts on Periwinkle (the shirts won't fit)...and let's just say that they're not quite her style:
|Disney Store Periwinkle in Project Mc2 McKeyla's overalls.|
Here are two more body comparisons with some smaller dolls, just for reference:
Periwinkle with Licca-chan:
|Disney Store Periwinkle, Licca-chan.|
And Periwinkle with Barbie's Stacie:
|Disney Store Periwinkle, Barbie Stacie.|
I didn't notice very many shoe-sharing opportunities, but Periwinkle's feet are about (if not exactly) the same as the larger Disney Store dolls' feet. The shoes share molds with the Disney Princess doll shoes.
Here's Peri wearing some Disney Princess shoes:
|Merida's slipper (left) and Belle's shoe (right).|
The mold of Merida's slippers is exactly the same as the mold of Periwinkle's shoes.
Here are a few more pictures of Periwinkle back in her full outfit:
I have to mention, again, how the white fuzz from the dress stuck to those rubbery legs, though. Every time I re-dressed Peri, it got worse:
|Stop frolicking through the cobwebs, Periwinkle.|
The shedding fur gives a shaggy, unkempt appearance to the whole lower half of the doll's outfit:
But she looks great from the waist up:
At this point, Periwinkle's hairstyle was relaxing a little at the top, which looked great--much less wedge-like. I was really hoping that this wasn't foreshadowing the hair's inability to stay in its original style, though.
Now, let's take a look at the Jakks Pacific "Stylin' Periwinkle" doll:
Jakks has actually made several versions of this character. The easiest version to find around here is the Pirate Fairy Periwinkle that I photographed at Target:
I still haven't seen The Pirate Fairy. It's next on my list!
I decided to order online and get the more traditional-looking Periwinkle that coordinates with Melissa's Stylin' Tinker Bell:
I did not find that de-boxing this Periwinkle was noticeably different from de-boxing the Disney Store doll. They both had their fair share of plastic tabs and plastic ties, but I was able to cut all of Peri's attachments and pull her free from the cardboard and the plastic casing while leaving the casing in place.
This Periwinkle can not stand on her own, either:
Her purple wings are attached by velcro to the back of the dress. They are easy to get on and off, but do not have the same fun factor as the Disney Store doll's fluttering wings.
|Kinda sloppy stitching, too.|
This Periwinkle also has her platinum hair swept up and sealed in place with styling product:
This style has a bit more shape to it than the Disney Store doll's wedge-cut hair.
She's a bit of a conehead.
Periwinkle also has a blue plastic flower decoration added to her hair:
And, hiding behind the clumps of hair at the side of her face, she has elfin ears:
I clipped back some of the hair so that you could see the ears better--you can also see smears of hair styling product all along her forehead:
This doll's face is nothing like the Disney Store's version of the doll, and frankly nothing like the movie character. She has a reasonably cute face, but it doesn't remind me of Periwinkle at all:
The other problem is that my doll's large eyes are severely wonky, and so she has an unintentionally goofy and disoriented look.
Periwinkle has large black pupils surrounded by three-toned blue irises. There's a dripping shadow line across the tops of her eyeballs, too:
She's wearing silver sparkly eyeshadow and bright pink lipstick. I prefer the more natural face of the Disney Store Periwinkle.
There's hair styling goo all over this doll's mouth, too, so it looks like she's drooling.
Which, I can't help it, makes me think of:
|Homer looking at donuts.|
I think this doll looks the best when she's glancing off to one side. This way, her misaligned eyes are not as obvious and the drool can be hidden in shadows:
Like Tinker Bell, Periwinkle comes carrying a small purse with a penny stamp design. The purse does not open, but I like how it looks:
|It has a different flower on each side.|
Periwinkle is wearing a light blue chiffon dress with glittery accents and a jagged hem:
The glitter accents on the bodice are very nicely done:
The dress has separate sleeves with a matching glittery pattern:
The dress has a darker blue underskirt made out of a stiff synthetic weave:
Periwinkle is also wearing soft vinyl slippers with molded laces:
Underneath the dress, she is wearing a pair of sheer white stockings:
This Periwinkle has a hard plastic torso and articulated vinyl limbs. The color-matching between the plastic and the vinyl is not perfect. She has eleven points of articulation, including flexible wrists.
Her underpants are light blue and have a molded leaf pattern. They're very pretty--as doll underpants go:
Periwinkle's head can look up, down, twist around and tip from side to side a little.
She has rotating hinge shoulders, elbows and wrists--which all give her very good arm mobility:
My doll's wrist joints look a little sloppy because of some vinyl scraps at the joint:
Despite the unsightly wrists, all of Periwinkle's arm joints work well. Her movement is a little sticky at the shoulders (where hard plastic meets softer vinyl), but it's not a huge problem.
Periwinkle has ball-shaped hip joints with rotating hinges. She can not sink down into a full side-to-side split...
...but her knees can be rotated upwards to allow pretty good flexibility...
...and actually, after I had been posing her for a while, she was able to drop into full side-to-side splits with her legs in any position:
A similar thing happened with the front-to-back splits. At first, Peri was a little hopeless at this move:
|Does this count as a split?|
But by the end of the review she could do splits with the best of 'em:
|Yeah! Look at me!|
She can also sit on the ground with her feet out in front of her:
And she can sit in a chair, although (yet again) her knee flexibility was not superb right out of the box:
This was as far as she could bend her leg:
But the movement improved slightly over time, and now she can bend her knee like this:
She also has rotation in her knees, so she can pivot her feet in and out:
|For better or for worse.|
Bending the leg at the knee when the lower leg is rotated feels awkward, though. The vinyl at the top of the joint gets in the way of the lower leg's movement. It's not a great design.
Another strange thing is that the hard plastic at the top of the hip joint is cutting into the softer vinyl of Periwinkle's leg:
So, every time Periwinkle sits down she slices away at the top of her leg. Poor thing.
|That's some serious chafing.|
Here are the two versions of Periwinkle together:
|Disney Store Periwinkle (left) and Jakks Pacific Periwinkle (right).|
As Melissa mentioned, the Jakks Pacific Periwinkle is quite a bit smaller than her Disney Store counterpart.
She is dwarfed by the larger Disney Store Princesses:
And--as Melissa also discovered--she's more similar in size and shape to an Ever After High doll:
|Ever After High Duchess Swan, Jakks Pacific Periwinkle.|
These two dolls can share clothes (and most non-shoe accessories) very well:
|Jakks Periwinkle in Ever After High Holly O'Hair's dress.|
|E.A.H. Duchess Swan in Jakks Pacific Periwinkle's dress.|
The size of Bratzillaz dolls seem to be right in between the two versions of Periwinkle. While the Disney Store Periwinkle was a little bigger than Meygana, the Jakks Periwinkle is a little bit smaller:
|Bratzillaz Meygana, Jakks Pacific Periwinkle.|
Meygana can wear Peri's dress nicely, and Peri can wear Bratzillaz clothes...although they look a little baggy in the chest and shoulders:
|Jakks Periwinkle in a Bratzillaz dress.|
This Periwinkle is more similar in overall size to the smaller dolls like Barbie's Stacie and Licca-chan, but the proportions of these dolls are different.
|Barbie Stacie, Jakks Periwinkle.|
|Licca-chan, Jakks Periwinkle.|
Unlike the Disney Store Periwinkle, the Jakks doll cannot share shoes with the Disney Princesses as reliably. Merida's flexible brown slipper fits, but Belle's hard plastic pump is too small.
As I was dressing and undressing Periwinkle, I noticed that her sleeves became more and more difficult to get on over her splayed fingers:
I figured that her hands must be removable, but so far I have been unable to pull them off...and I'm reluctant to tug on them any harder.
By the end of the review, it had become almost impossible to get Peri's fingers past the netted lining of the sleeves:
Here are a few more pictures of this fairy in her original outfit:
Once I had taken most of the pictures I needed for this review, I decided to see what would happen if I boil-washed the extreme hairstyles on these two Periwinkle dolls.
First, I had to remove the Jakks Pacific doll's blue hair decoration. Here's what it looks like on its own:
I used very hot water for this process, and let the dolls' heads soak for much longer than I normally do. I usually just dunk once or twice and then comb the hair out. This time, I propped the dolls' heads into a cup of hot water and walked away for a few minutes.
Still...the hair was not ready to lay flat:
However, the rooting is good on the Jakks doll, and there are no huge portions of scalp showing.
I let her hair dry completely...
...and then I repeated the boil wash process all over again and wrapped the hair in a paper towel as it dried.
This is how Periwinkle looks right now:
Her hair is very layered, and it still wants to stick up, but it's not a complete disaster to have it down:
|It softens her appearance a little.|
The Disney Store Periwinkle's hair required a similar double-boil treatment. This is how it looked after the first round:
This doll's hair is a slightly different color than the Jakks doll's hair. It's not bright platinum blonde, but more of a grey-ish white. Also, the rooting is not as dense on this Periwinkle's head. She has a couple of areas where the painted scalp shows through--especially when the hair is wet:
Here she is with her hair completely dry:
There were still a couple of strands that refused to behave. There are also more really short strands on the top of this doll's head than I saw on the Jakks doll. This makes it extra-tricky to keep the hair laying flat on top.
The patches of scalp are not as obvious when the hair is dry, though, and I think this is partly because of the short, fluffy sections of hair:
After the second boil wash, I was able to get the hair to lay more smoothly (and stay out of the way of the wings...):
I'm not exactly sure what to do next to tame the hair or keep it laying flat. I guess my recommendation would be (for both dolls) to leave the hair in its original set for as long as possible.
On the other hand, don't panic if the hair eventually starts to lose its factory style and come down. The doll will not be completely ruined if the styling product gets washed out.
Here are both dolls together again--back before I monkeyed with their hair:
Bottom line? Let me try to summarize the main differences between these two fairies in a few broad categories.
Faces: the Disney Store Periwinkle's face is sweet and appealing and looks just like the movie character. The Jakks Pacific Periwinkle's face is more generic, and my doll has wonky eyes. I overwhelmingly prefer the Disney Store face.
Hair: Both dolls have fun, gravity-defying, up-swept hairstyles that rely on copious amounts of gel to stay in place. The Jakks Pacific doll's hair has a bit more styling gel and is quite pointy at the top, giving her a coneheaded look. The Disney Store doll's hair has a slightly more relaxed shape, but the hair looks like it might come out of its style too easily. I prefer the more mellow white-blonde of the Disney Store Periwinkle's hair to the stark white of the Jakks doll. Both dolls can survive having their hair let down, although the Jakks doll's hair length is easier to work with and the rooting is slightly denser. The Disney Store doll's hair interferes with her wings when it is down. When both dolls have their original hairstyle, I like the Disney Store doll's hair better. When the style is taken down, I slightly prefer the Jakks doll's hair.
Clothing: Both outfits have some great features...and some pretty serious oversights. The Disney Store Periwinkle's dress is movie-accurate and has a neat leaf shape with beautiful vein embroidery. However, the feathery underskirt sheds like crazy and leaves bits of white fuzz stuck to everything--particularly the doll's rubber legs. The Jakks Pacific Periwinkle's dress has a lovely, flowing shape and pretty glitter accents. However, the separate sleeves are difficult to fit over the doll's splayed fingers. By the end of the review, it was almost impossible for me to get the sleeves back on. Overall, I prefer the Jakks Pacific dress (minus the sleeves) because it's pretty, it's easy to get on and off, and it doesn't shed!
Articulation/body style: I am not a fan of rubbery legs and internal knee joints. This type of joint is inflexible and way too fragile--at least the way the Disney Store is doing it. Rubbery legs also make dolls hard to dress and tricky to keep dust-free (or fuzz-free). In addition, the Disney Store Periwinkle has limited head movement and no wrist articulation. The Jakks doll has great head movement and eleven points of rotating hinge articulation. This is almost a dream come true--except that the joints take a while to loosen up to their full potential, and there are also a few design flaws that unnecessarily limit movement (or scrape away bits of the doll). Overall, I prefer the Jakks Periwinkle's articulation.
Wings! I love the Disney Store Periwinkle's wings. For anyone who wants to recreate the Disney Fairies stories, these permanent wings seem like a necessity. On the other hand, the Jakks Periwinkle is a more versatile doll with her removable wings. She can share clothing with other dolls and could re-enact scenes from the movies where the wings are folded up or concealed. Still, there are plenty of wingless dolls out there...and plenty of dolls with detachable wings. I like the novelty of having a permanently-winged fairy doll. For me, this is a huge part of the attraction of this particular line of characters.
Despite my fondness for the Jakks doll's outfit and articulation, overall I favor the Disney Store's interpretation of Periwinkle the Frost Fairy.
Melissa and I might have diverged in our opinions once or twice, but my bottom line ends up being very similar to hers: it's all about the face--and, for me, the wings. I love the Disney Store faces and wings. These dolls can't help but conjure the charming characters in the excellent Disney Fairies movies. If I were a kid again, having just seen The Legend of the NeverBeast for the first time, pretty much nothing would have made me happier than a Disney Store Fawn doll and a plush Gruff...allowing the movie to live on in my imaginary games for months or even years after the closing credits. That's the magic of a good doll paired with a great story.