I was supposed to be on a spending moratorium. No spending money because I spent $300 at PullipStyle. That was my deal with myself. Then I got this coupon in the mail from Toys R Us, $5 off a $25 or more purchase of Monster High. “Well, $25 isn’t so bad,” I thought. “Especially since their website says that only one of the new dolls is out yet.”
So I went down there last night.
And there were new ghouls everywhere.
The whole aisle was full of them!
If my brother hadn’t been with me to be a voice of reason…god, I hate to think how much I would have spent. I still ended up using the $15 off a $100 purchase coupon instead of the $5 off a $25 Monster High purchase coupon. (I’ll use that coupon later. Lots of ghouls left to buy still…) Fortunately, some of that $100 was actually my brother’s stuff–about $30 worth–and part of it wasn’t Monster High, but that miWorld Pizza Parlor set I’d been looking for, but it was still Monster High’s fault I was spending money when I wasn’t supposed to be, darn it!
It’s all your fault I have no more backbone, Mattel!
UH, anyway, the main purchase was Gooliope Jellington, the amazingly cool super-size ghoul, 17 inches tall. But before I get to her, I have to say something about her line, the Freak du Chic line. Is it that someone at Mattel is watching Groove with jealous eyes, or are they just Black Butler fans, or what? Because look at the designs in the Freak du Chic circus! They would fit into Joker’s circus so well that it’s downright eerie! I mean, seriously, Toboso could probably sue Mattel. Okay, maybe they’re not that similar, but…the fact that Mattel came out with this circus-themed line the same year Groove’s releasing their Book of Circus Kuroshitsuji dolls seems a bit more than mere coincidence, especially given the similarity of the look. (Of course, given the popularity of both lines with adult collectors like myself, Mattel would hardly be foolish to look to Groove/anime/manga for inspiration, so…I’m not quite sure what my point is…)
Unlike with normal dolls, Gooliope is sort of crunched up in her package, to make the package as close in size as possible to a normal package’s size. She’s also trying to escape from the package:
You can’t see the impact marks too well in the photo, unfortunately, but they’re a really cute packaging touch: she’s in the process of punching her way out of the packaging. 😉
The first thing I noticed as I was getting her out of the package was that not only was her entire body a much harder plastic than most Monster High dolls, but also that she was hollow, making her lighter than she would be if she was solid, but giving her a slightly different feel, unsettling at first contact, but you get used to it very quickly. It’s hard to describe exactly; an illusory feeling of brittleness, perhaps? (I suspect you’d have to run her over with a motorcycle–or at least a motor scooter–before you could do her any serious damage, but the hollow nature makes you think she’s brittle. Or it makes me instinctively think that way, anyway.) Another thing I noticed early on was that she has more joints than the normal-sized ghouls.
She’s actually using a joint here that the normal ghouls don’t have, but I’m not sure you can tell. One thing you also can’t tell in the photo is that I really shouldn’t have cut the clear rubber band holding her epaulets in place. I thought it was going to interfere with her shoulder joints (and it was) but her epaulets just won’t stay in place now. 😦
This is that joint the normal dolls don’t have, btw. 😀 Finally, a Monster High doll with a torso joint! Unfortunately, all her extra joints actually make it a little harder to pose her; making her sit is a much more deliberate process than it is with a normal doll. For that reason, I’m afraid Mattel may find dolls in this scale a harder sell to children. Adult collectors should eat them up, though, because the added poses are fantastic. (I believe we’re supposed to get the original ghouls in this size later on, and I’m practically drooling over the idea…though I have no freakin’ clue where I’m going to put them…)
Her arms also have an extra joint, as you can see, just below the shoulder, as well as a more detailed elbow. (Similar to the more detailed knee you may have noticed on the funky pose photo.) Essentially, her joints are more like the kind you find on many BJDs…except they’re not all quite ball-jointed…which I realize doesn’t quite make sense. Anyway, this photo of her arm is as good as any to point out how she’s covered in “drips.” Even though they’re officially calling her the daughter of “unknown,” she’s clearly supposed to be the daughter of the Blob, so they decided to make her dribbly, which is pretty cool…except that if you pose her so her arm is pointed up, then her drips are going up her arm, contrary to gravity. (Admittedly, there’s not really anything they could do about that. Uh, not without making the doll prohibitively expensive. Technically, there are insanely complex things they could do, but…yeah, basically nothing they could do.)
(See what I mean about “dripping up”?) I love the curl beside her face there. The strawberry lemonade hair is nice overall, too, a pleasant combination of colors, and the two shades of pink–her hair and her skin–work together surprisingly well. (There are some shades of pink that I am violently opposed to seeing together.)
I love her shoes. Although I have to admit, my first thought was that it was a raptor skeleton rather than a horse skeleton, but that wouldn’t actually make sense.
Now, just in case you’re wondering just how much bigger than all the other dolls in my collection Gooliope is (and even if you’re not), I took a bunch of comparison shots. Because she is seriously the largest doll I own.
Because I hadn’t yet noticed the scaled-up doll stand inside her box, I found her a chair on this lunchbox. For the sake of shot composition, this was probably the better idea anyway.
Even seated, she towers over Taeyang, and she thinks my still-nameless miko is cutely tiny.
Gene’s giving her the cold shoulder, and Emma doesn’t know what to think.
Tristen looks petrified, but young Amelia (aka Little Mismatched) likes everyone. Gooliope looks strangely contemplative here.
The only doll whose scale is comparable (Belle is also sitting on the lunch box, not standing beside it), but Gooliope’s still larger, because her head is so huge. They don’t know what to make of each other at all.
So, moving on, it looked like Toys R Us had the entire Freak du Chic and Boo York lines out on the shelves already–well, maybe not the entire Boo York line, as I didn’t see the new Nefera de Nile doll, and I’m fairly sure there’s supposed to be one of her in that line–and they all looked great. The new ghouls all looked wonderful, especially Moucedes (Mousecedes? How the heck did they spell that?) and whatever the moth girl was named, and Elle Eedee. The Freak du Chic versions of Rochelle, Frankie (who was making her own hand come out of a hat), Toralei and Jinafire (who was breathing out green fire!) were also fantastic.
However, in order to not spend a zillion dollars again–and because Toys R Us tends to charge about $5 more for Monster High than other stores, though they get the dolls in about two weeks to a month earlier in many case–I held off, and all I got other than Gooliope was the I Heart Fashion Iris Clops, which, if it’s like the other such sets, will be a TRU exclusive.
As much as I adore Greek myths, I have to agree with my brother on this one. Based on her coloration, she’s not the daughter of a cyclops. She’s the daughter of Scaroth, the last of the Jaggeroth. That’s way cooler. She just needs a new name to go with it. Besides, guys, if her name’s Iris, where are all the rainbows, huh? Get with the program! Anyway, whatever her new Doctor Who name is, I had to take her photo with a couple of Greek myth based eye-girl customs of mine.
So, on the left we have the daughter of Argos Panoptes, formerly the three-eyed ghoul Create-a-Monster. Then I went and gave her more eyes with the temporary tattoo-style faces from the design studio, only I put them in unexpected places, like her hands, belly and sides. Then I gave her the eye-decorated peacock tail that came with one of the, uh, what were they called? The ones you press on their brains to change their eyes. Them. And the eye-pants and eye-headband came on a Yasmina Clairvoya Bratzilla doll, but what could be more perfect for the daughter of a guy covered in eyeballs? (The peacock tail, btw, for those less steeped in the Greek myths than myself, is because after Hermes slew Argos Panoptes, Hera took his eyes and put them on the tail of her bird, the peacock in memory of her devoted servant.) She doesn’t have a first name yet, just a surname, Panoptis, “daughter of Panoptes”.
Moving to the doll on the right, which was done without the aid of, you know, talent, you have my attempt to make a cyclops out of one of those blank dolls for that sold online-only device to let you design a doll and then have a printer draw on a blank doll with water soluble markers. (Which it sounds like didn’t really work too well.) Anyway, I attached air-dry clay to her face to give her three dimensional facial features, because I think they look better with some dimensionality, especially considering how badly drawn my facial features are. (This reminds me, I really need to finish the second doll in the set…) Her hair is kind of a disaster…it’s the wig that came with the outfit (for those Mystixx Vampires dolls), and I’m still not entirely sure about it. I haven’t decided on her character at all, except that she’s the daughter of one of the original Cyclopes, the ones who were sons of Gaia and Ouranos, the blacksmiths who made the thunderbolt for Zeus. (Not to be confused with Polyphemos and his ilk.)
Okay, I think that sums up the results of Monster High swallowing up my spine. Album here. I am still going to try not to spend any more money, though. Apart from using that $5 off $25 coupon. Maybe on the Cleo and Deuce Boo York gift set. Those sets are frequently TRU exclusives, too…
Maybe I should start buying lottery tickets…