Barbie can’t hold a candle to the Bratz girl dolls when it comes to Slut potential. While Barbie has been chastised for years because of her unrealistic body shape, compared to the Bratz dolls, Barbie truly is wholesome.
One of my brothers gave my daughter a Bratz doll for Christmas. He claimed, at the time that Bratz would give Barbie a run for their money, that soon they would be outselling the Barbie dolls. I doubt it, I suspect that a number of these dolls will sell. But I expect that their appeal will be more to the teen-aged boys set than the young girls set. While the design of the dolls is interesting, I don’t particularly need a doll that encourages my pre-teen daughter to dress like a mini-gang b*nger slut. Which is what, these so called Ethinic dolls really seem to encourage with their mid-drift showing, mouth- pouting Tammy Faye Baker style make-up looks.
So What Is A Bratz Doll? a Bratz doll is a Barbie-Type semi-posable doll that comes with several outfits, a change of shoes and a backpack/purse or something like that. There are 4 different Bratz dolls. There is an African-American doll (the one pictured here on Epinions is Sasha The African American doll). There is a Hispanic doll-Yasmine-this is the one my daughter has. There is an Asian Doll and there is a “White” doll. While I have looked at all 4 dolls, the only ones I’ve had any “experience” with are Yasmine and Sasha. These dolls are supposed to be pro-ethnic, but the design and style of the dolls is hardly flattering to any ethnic group.
A brief Description-these dolls are about an inch shorter than the average Barbie Style doll. They are “thinner” than Barbie, with smaller breasts. Their heads are bigger than a Barbie head-about twice as big and soft. They have very, very long hair-waist long or longer-Yasmine’s hair is a light brown and slightly curly with a small braid on each side of her head. One of the main things that makes this doll different than other types of girl doll are the feet. Instead of changing shoes-you change feet. The feet literally twist off just above the ankles. Yasmine comes with a pair of pink sandled feet and a pair of high-heeled brown flowered boot/feet. This idea/design will ultimately lead to the loss of a shoe/foot. Unlike Barbie, where it doesn’t matter if you lose a shoe or two, with Bratz dolls it really does matter because if you lose a shoe-you lose a FOOT!
Face And Make-up : This is where I really start getting into the problems I have with these dolls. The people in design over at MGA must have taken make-up lessons from Tammy Faye Baker and Company. To say these dolls look smutty is an understatement. Yasmine has slightly slanted dark eyes that are ringed with heavy “mascara” and a TON of multi-toned purple eye shadow. Her lips are fat and pouty and dark reddish purple. Personally, I DO NOT want my pre-teenaged daughter encouraged to wear makeup like this. To be honest, I recall wearing makeup much like this as a teen-and I remember my father making a comment that if I were to insist of wearing bright purple eye shadow I should stay away from East Colfax or someone might think I was a “working-girl”. Not exactly a subtle statement, but he made his point. He didn’t tell me not to wear the makeup-he just pointed out what it made me look like. All of the Bratz girls have makeup like this, the only differences are the color tones and the poutiness factor.
The Clothes-Okay, this is where I really began to dislike the dolls. Yasmine comes with two outfits. She comes out of the box wearing a pair of bell-bottom, hip-hugging belly showing tan canvas style pants and a midi-shirt. She has a change of clothes-a denim mini skirt-and I do mean MINI skirt –this thing is so short it barely covers the essentials. And then there is the 2ed-midi top-blue with light gauzy see through arms-the only thing the “shirt” does is cover the breasts-and that it barely does. Yasmine also comes with a triangle sized hair thing/bandana (brown). And I’ve already mentioned the boots/shoes/feet.
Sasha comes with what I like to call your standard Gang-Banger outfit, which includes one of those little ski caps. Like Yasmine she comes with exchangeable feet and a short body hugging clothes. The only difference really is the colors of the clothes. Getting the clothes on and off the dolls is also a major pain in the you-know-where. While you can bend the arms and legs to a certain degree, the waist is made very narrow, the pants are made to fit the waist-getting the pants and skirts on is a struggle. The shirts cling to the dolls body and getting the tight blouses on isn’t easy either-it was hard for me to do, and impossible for my daughter. The only item of clothing that goes on and off with any ease is the exchangeable feet-this is the same for BOTH dolls and I’ll assume the other two dolls available
I am NOT impressed with the clothes offered for Bratz dolls. I am already having enough trouble with my daughter over clothes. She WANTS to wear things that show off her shoulders and belly buttons. These dolls just encourage her. My brother gave her the Hispanic doll because my daughter is Hispanic. (although I wonder if the look of the doll simply appealed to him because of how she looked in tight clothes and makeup). I don’t like that these dolls seem to encourage children of different Ethnic origins-heck of ANY Ethnic origin to dress like mini-sluts.
Overall When I started thinking about this review I was torn on whether or not to recommend these dolls, but the more I’ve seen my daughter play with her doll and the more I’ve looked at the other doll and the doll we own the less I like them. While at first I thought the dolls to be sort of “cute” in a different style way( and let me tell you I’m sick to death of Barbie-we have at least 50 different one-one of the “bonuses” of having a brother who is an aspiring toy designer and used to work in a toy store) I think that these dolls might be something of a collectors item, I also suspect that in about six months you will be able to find the left overs of these dolls in the $1.98 shelf at the toy store. Right now they seem to be somewhat popular-particularly the African-American, Hispanic and Asian versions. If you are interested in these dolls you can look them over at Amazon.com-all but the white dolls are out of stock at this time.
NO, I wouldn’t recommend these dolls for young impressionable girls. Besides the design flaws such as lose a shoe-lose a foot, and the too-tight clothes that Mommy has to put on, there is the whole sleaziness factor that these dolls come with. I think these dolls might appeal to teenaged boys more than girls, and while I might say give them to a teenaged girl-I would not recommend that you give them to a 5, 6 or 7-year-old.
A Few Last Words-these dolls are recommended for children aged 5-12 years old. You can buy extra clothing for the dolls in packages. To get an idea of what the other dolls look like you can go to :
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/search-handle-form/102-8697784-3743369 for full specs.
If you click on Full Specs up above and to your left you will see that although Epinions is only showing a picture of Sasha-they do mention Yasmine as well.
Tom(4-1-1) was nice enough to let me know that the amazon.com link isn't working right-here is a link to the kbkids.com site if you want to see some of the packs of clothes and one of the dolls available
http://www.kbtoys.com and type in Bratz(Epinions won't let me do the whole link!)If you go to http://www.toysrus.com and type in BRATZ then that should bring up a list and pictures of all 4 dolls. since all but one are out of stock, if you go to amazon.com right now and type it in, you will only see what is available in ZSHOPS
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Amount Paid (US$): 0.00
Type of Toy: Action Figure
Age Range of Child: Other