Showing posts with label music. Show all posts
Showing posts with label music. Show all posts

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Kuu Kuu Harajuku Dolls by Mattel

At the end of May I was looking at the new wave of Project Mc2 dolls on Amazon (apparently I can't stay away from those science girls!) when a recommendation popped up on my screen: Mattel's Kuu Kuu Harajuku dolls.  I had never heard of these dolls, but they looked really cute in the pictures.  At the time when I was shopping, there were three ten-inch fashion dolls and five four-inch mini dolls available.

The fashion dolls are a bit like a mash-up of Ever After High girls and Little Charmers (with big oval heads, round eyes and good-looking articulation), but they also have Japanese Harajuku-themed accessories...similar to the Shibajuku Girl dolls I reviewed back in December.

The dolls are based on an animated television show inspired by Gwen Stefani's 2004 Harajuku Girls song.  The show's five main characters, G, Angel, Music, Love, and Baby are based on Gwen Stefani and her four (controversial) Japanese backup singers from the Love. Angel. Music. Baby. album.  Dolls were made from each of the five main characters.  I chose to purchase large and mini versions of "G," the lead singer and alter ego of Ms. Stefani herself:

Kuu Kuu Harajuku "G" fashion doll ($19.99) and mini doll ($5.99).

Saturday, October 3, 2015

"Tsumugi Kotobuki" Pure Neemo doll by Azone International

I've been hearing about the Azone International doll company for a few years now.  Both Jessica (from the first Photo Mission) and Charlotte (from Milklegs Dolls) have listed these Japanese dolls among their favorites.  I was curious about this highly-articulated brand from the first time I heard it mentioned, but it took me a really long time to choose a doll to buy.  It often takes time to get acquainted with a new doll company, but I found the Azone doll selection particularly overwhelming.  One obstacle is that there are several different sizes of doll made by this company.  To name a few, there are 1:3 (18-20 inch) Original Series dolls, 1:12 (~6 inch) Picco Neemo dolls, and a wide array of 1:6 (9-12 inch) Pure Neemo characters.

Even after I decided on the 1:6 Pure Neemo size range, I still had a lot of options in front of me.  First of all, there's size variation within the 1:6 scale.  These dolls can be XS (extra small, 7.2 inches), S (small, 7.76 inches), M (medium, 8.43 inches) or L (large, 8.86 inches).  There's some chest size variation, too.  In addition, not all Pure Neemo bodies are articulated in the same way.  I ended up with what's called a regular Flection body, but there are also Flection Advanced and Flection Full-Action bodies...the latter of which I probably would have liked better than the one I bought.  However, I got distracted by the characters of the dolls and didn't pay enough attention to articulation until it was too late.  I was fascinated by the characters because many of the Pure Neemo dolls are based on Japanese anime series.  I didn't want to buy a doll without knowing her backstory, so I watched quite a bit of anime.

After browsing and deliberating, I decided on a doll from the K-On! anime collection.  The K-On! manga and anime follow a group of Japanese high school girls who belong to a rock band. My doll is named Tsumugi Kotobuki (Mugi for short), and she is the band's wealthy and kindhearted keyboard player:

Pure Neemo 1:6 "Tsumugi Kotobuki" by Azone International.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Beatrix Girls "Lark" by Popstar Club

The Beatrix Girls are 12 inch dolls that represent a group of four (teenaged?) friends who are in a band together.  Each character sings, plays an instrument, and writes music.  The girls are designed to be role models for young kids because of the talent, determination and hard work that have made their band a huge success.  The Beatrix Girls are manufactured by Popstar Club LLC, a new California-based company that plans to focus on cross-platform products.  The dolls are part of a multi-media world that includes short (live action) webisodes and tracks of pop music.

When I first saw the Beatrix Girls dolls on the shelves at Toys R Us last year, I was turned off by the huge heads and facial expressions on these characters.  Frankly, the combination of wide eyes, angrily-slanted eyebrows and large smiles made these dolls look sinister to me.  However, the body proportions on the Beatrix Girls reminded me of Pullip and Blythe dolls, and I couldn't help but wonder if this brand might be an interesting and inexpensive alternative to some popular large-headed collector dolls.

Over the past year, many of you have encouraged me to take a second look at The Beatrix Girls.  I took your advice, and will admit that by the third or fourth time I saw these dolls in the store, the faces started to seem less angry and more appealing.  However, I was still bothered by the fact that the first release dolls did not come with their instruments (nor were the instruments originally available for separate purchase).  This was an oversight for a doll brand designed around music.  Last May, however, I was able to find a Justice exclusive version of the redheaded character, "Lark," who actually came with her bass guitar.  I decided to purchase this doll for review and paid $24.99 for her through Amazon (where she's now on sale for $20).  Incidentally, all of the newest Beatrix Girl dolls come with instruments, and the instruments have also recently been released in separate accessory sets.  Here's my Lark:

Beatrix Girls Lark doll
Beatrix Girls "Lark" $24.99.