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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Lalaloopsy Girls Pix E. Flutters review

I've had this post in Draft Limbo for the past month, having had computer problems, family obligations, and some pet-sitting gigs along the way.  In that time Miss Emily beat me to the punch (again) and has reviewed a Lalaloopsy Girl of her own.  She added some info on some other Lalaloopsy lines that are available, including a group of babies that I've never even seen!  I predict that the Lalaloopsy Newborns may be making an appearance here in the future.

I'm continuing with this review because my doll is different than Miss Emily's, and because my opinions vary ever so slightly.  Most of  these pictures (and indeed, most of this review) were done with my cell phone so they're...well, let's say that they're of questionable quality.  But it was better than nothing.  With that said, here's Pix E. Flutters.
Before I review the doll, it's time for the brief history on this new breed of Lalaloopsy.  Lalaloopsy Girls are intended to be teenage versions of the original Lalaloopsy dolls that we all know and either love or hate.  They're high school students, very much like a number of other successful (and not-so-successful) doll lines.  They have the same pets as their Lalaloopsy counterparts, and they're all "sewn" out of various fabrics that determine their personalities (Pix was made from a fairy's dress).  I'm not sure what prompted MGA Entertainment to take this route with these dolls.  Well...okay, I do have a couple of ideas why, but I thought Lalaloopsies were making MGA enough money without the teenage high school gimmick.  I mean, we've got Monster High, Ever After High, the Bratzillaz at their fancy school, the Equestria Girls at Canterlot High, the wannabes at Fairy Tale High, and probably some that I've forgotten along the way.  Heck, if you want to nitpick the Harry Potter dolls and action figures could even count!  I can't help but wonder:  do all these dolly schools know the others exist?  Are there rivalries or alliances?  Do their football teams duke it out on Friday nights in the fall?  It really makes a body wonder! 

LOL, anyway, so far I've counted ten Lalaloopsy Girls in stores, and they come in basic and deluxe-style packaging.   The basic dolls come with a pet and a comb, while the deluxe dolls come with an extra outfit, a pet, a comb, a child-size hair clip, and a pair of smaller hair clips for the doll's hair.  These deluxe dolls also have hair that changes colors when exposed to cold water or temperatures.  So far, there have been ten characters released:
  *Pix E. Flutters
  *Mittens Fluff-n-Stuff
  *Spot Splatter Splash
  *Jewel Sparkles 
  *Bea Spells-A-Lot
  *Peanut Big Top
  *Crumbs Sugar Cookie
  *Suzette La Sweet
  *Cloud E. Sky and Storm E. Sky
Tippy Tumbelina is waiting in the wings, and there has been some whispers about Dot Starlight as well.  I desperately hope that the whispers are true, because I find Dot both cute and underrepresented in the Lalaloopsy world.  Plus...look how cute she is in the show!
Alrighty, back to the review.  For the sake of individuality and simplicity I'm going to refer to her simply as "Pix."  Pix is 9 and 1/4 inches tall from head to toe, putting her in the short end of the fashion doll spectrum.  She's shorter than Monster High and La Dee Da dolls, and taller than Pepper Parson from the now-defunct Pinkie Cooper line.
She's quite a bit smaller than the original Lalaloopsy dolls, thus a much smaller chance that I'll be whacking myself in the face with Pix (I've done that several times with Blossom).
Aside from size Pix and Blossom are highly similar...at least, in terms of build and facial features.  Pix has the black button eyes typical of most Lalaloopsies.  They are ever so slightly more detailed than normal Lalaloopsy eyes:
And she has pink patch cheeks, also typical of most Lalaloopsies.
One feature NOT typical of Lalaloopsies is this mouth!  Instead of having a fully stitched smile, she has a dinky little rosebud mouth.
I promise I'll update this post with better pictures!  Anyway, Pix and her Lalaloopsy Girlfriends have rosebud mouths in shades of pink that coordinate with their skin; Pix has rose-colored lips, while Suzette La Sweet wears a garish shade of hot pink.  My Pix's lip paint is a tad uneven, so keep your eyes peeled for lousy paint jobs.  Lalaloopsies normally don't have molded noses, and Pix is no exception.  However, she does have painted freckles where her nose would be.  They are painted on straight and are of an orange shade.  In all, Pix has a nice face, but it's not as expressive as the larger Lalaloopsy dolls.  When compared to my full-size Blossom and Mint, Pix looks a little blank.  Initially I thought colored eyes might help, but then I saw Bea's blue eyes...and my opinions changed.  Bea is CREEPY!!!!!!!!!!!

Above the face is the hair (what a surprise!).  Pix has chartreuse hair which is part molded and part rooted.  The molded part of Pix's hair is made to look like strands of yarn, another feature of most Lalaloopsies.  She has a center part and sideswept bangs.  She also had some flecks of black stuff on her hair, but I was able to brush that crap off.
The left side of her forehead is adorned with three non-removable plastic daisies.
The flowers are very well executed.  They are molded to look like they were crocheted or sewn.  The centers are buttons and are painted yellow.  This time MGA got the paint job spot-on.  It also turns out that this touch is accurate to the original Pix E. Flutters doll; both the original doll and the girl have three flowers.  If you don't know what the original Pix looks like, here's a picture:
The rooted hair is where things get interesting.  Pix and the other Lalaloopsy Girls have hair made up of flat plastic cording, the kind that I once used to make braided keychains.  It's very curly.
Pix is one of the deluxe dolls so she has the color-changing hair feature.  Some of her locks are made of temperature-sensitive plastic and will turn pink if exposed to cold air or water. When that happens, Pix looks something like this:
It was 54 degrees Fahrenheit and rainy on the day I took that picture.  65 degrees is also cool enough, as I learned when I accidentally left the heat in the house off one night.  When the outside temperature is 65 degrees and the humidity is high, the change occurs more slowly.  A sunny, low-humidity 66-degree day proved too warm for color change.  Judging from the way it behaved in 65-degree weather I suspect that may be pretty close to the threshold temperature.

Before I move on I think I should point out that when Pix was in her package she had her hair tied up in simple little buns.  I took these down, found Pix's curls too much to manage, and put them back up.  Thus her hairstyle varies from picture to picture.  Peanut Big Top sports a similar style; the other Lalaloopsy Girls wear their hair loose or in braids.

Regarding clothes, Pix wears a one-piece dress that is only vaguely based on that of her original Lalaloopsy self.  In case you didn't notice, Big Pix went pretty heavy on the pink!  The girl version of Pix's dress has some pink, but not a ton of it.
The jacket is chartreuse like Pix's hair. It is made of thick knit fabric and is hemmed, but there are some sloppy-looking loose threads in a few places.  This may be because I've already changed Pix's clothes several times.
The whole shebang, dress, jacket, and all, opens with one single strip of Velcro.  The jacket is sewn to the dress, which I think is a shame.  Making it separate would've bumped up the mix-and-match factor just a bit.  But then again, the dress does have a low neckline.  Perhaps the jacket is sewn on so that the dress won't be quite so revealing?  Or maybe the dress wouldn't have stayed up as well on Pix's smooth body?  Go figure.  Anywho, the dress is made of a two-tone striped knit fabric that is based not on the original Pix's dress, but on her painted tights (see above for a reference).  The skirt is doubled under to make a bubble skirt and lined with some netting.  The exterior is covered with a layer of sparkly tulle, which adds some additional volume.  The bodice has no tulle.  Some subtle glitter adds to the visual effect on this part of the dress.

Around the waist is this dark pink sash.
Now that, my dears, is a LOT of glitter.  I find that strange since the reverse side of the fabric is shiny enough in its own right!  The glitter level on this sash is approaching glitter-barf level, but at least the glitter is very solidly affixed to the sash.  I've owned dolls and doll clothes that were practically raining glitter (and I've also seen them reviewed, LOL), and it gets to be a pain in the posterior after awhile.

Underneath the dress Pix wears pink painted tights.  These go to her knees and have scalloped edges.
In true Lalaloopsy fashion, Pix has her sewn-on date "stitched" on her bum.
The shoes help Pix stand out from the rest of the Lalaloopsy dolls...literally!  None of my other Lalas are able to stand on their own, so this is a first.  The shoes are solely responsible for this improvement in balance, as you'll soon see.  But first, let's look at the shoes.
They are made of chartreuse flexible plastic and have tiny raised dots.  The straps are molded to look like braided cord.
There are molded daisies on these shoes, but they aren't as nicely molded or nicely painted as Pix's hair flowers.  The soles ARE nicely painted, and they are highly textured.  Notice that the shoes are marked "left" and "right," which is another Lalaloopsy tradition.
These go on and stay on, by the way.  They won't fall off with the slightest provocation like Barbie's shoes sometimes will.  At the same time they're easy to pull off if you want Pix to go barefoot.

In a nod to her fairy roots, Pix has wings (keep in mind that she is supposed to be a fairy).
They're cute, but they're nothing super-special, just a piece of wing-shaped translucent pink plastic.  They attach to Pix's shoulders with a clear elastic band.  One thing of note is the color; the original Pix E. Flutters has light green wings, while my Pix has pink wings.  I guess chartreuse hair, a chartreuse jacket, chartreuse shoes, and chartreuse wings would have been just a bit monochromatic.

Matching the wings are these hair clips.
Again, these are cute but nothing to write home about.

Normally that would take us on to the body review, but remember that these deluxe dolls come with an extra outfit.  With that, here's Pix's pajamas.
I probably should have made it clear earlier that the extra outfit is always a pajama set.  So let's take a gander at Pix's pj's.  The top is pink and printed with fireflies, Pix's favorite insect.  It closes in the back with Velcro, and is decorated with tulle ruffles.  I wish the fireflies could glow; that would've been a cute touch.
The pajama bottoms appear to be made of the same striped knit fabric as Pix's dress.  The pants are elasticized at the waist and cuffs, the latter of which have some more tulle trim.
Perfect for the world's biggest pajamas party that Lalaloopsy's Facebook page is holding.  I also included the star of the next review in this picture (poor old Mint had to sit this one out due to a lack of pajamas).
Now that the clothes are out of the way, time for the body review.
You know how parents are always whining about how dolls are giving girls complexes about their bodies?  Well, I think they'll be pleased.  Pix is supposed to represent the teen/tween demographic, and yet behold!  No boobies!  No skinny little waist!  No butt cheeks!  Pix has an egg-shaped torso with the aforementioned painted tights and an X-shaped "stitched" bellybutton (another Lalaloopsy feature). 
She has what may be called "mitten hands," the type that have a thumb but no other definition.  The only joints are in the shoulders, and they are ball joints.
The motion in the shoulders is average-good; they rotate all the way around and stretch out from the body nicely.  However, the range of inward motion depends on what Pix is wearing.  When she's nude or in her pj's she can lower her arms all the way down to her sides (kindly ignore Horatio in the background).
But what Pix is wearing her dress her arms stick out a bit (see above).  Regarding legs, they too look like grown-up versions of Lalaloopsy legs (or nubbins, as Miss Emily calls them).
Notice the size of Pix's feet...and the shape as well.  They are huge, and completely rounded.  It's impossible for Pix to stand without shoes unless she is propped up, held up, or placed in a stand.  At first I wondered why MGA didn't include stands for these girls, but then I remembered that Pix stands solidly when she has her shoes on.  Plus it wouldn't be a huge travesty to put her shoes on when she's in pajamas.  So I can see MGA's reasoning there.

Okay, where was I?  Oh yes, joints.  Pix's legs are jointed at the hips, and they too are ball joints.  WARNING:  the next picture is somewhat crude. 
LOL, all apologies for that; my phone's camera doesn't have the best zoom.  Anyway, Pix doesn't have great mobility in her hips.  The ball joints are a step up from the simple hinges that Lalaloopsy dolls have.  She has a bit of lateral movement that big Lalas don't.  She can do some mediocre splits...
...and she can cross her legs like this when she stands.
She can sit, but unfortunately she sits like a bimbo on Quaaludes.  She also has to use her arms to prop herself up when she sits.
The leg joint feels like it could break if I get too pushy with it.

Oops, I forgot the neck joint!  It swivels and...it swivels!  Pix can't look up or down, only sideways.
Her head is connected very solidly, though.  It doesn't loll from side to side like a big Lalaloopsy head.

Now, let's see how well Pix can share clothes with the other dolls.  One reason why I bought her was to see who she could swap duds with, so now's the chance.  Unfortnately I had to rule out several candidates right off the bat.  Barbie and LIV clothes are way too big.  Novi Stars, Bratz, Moxie Girls, Monster High, Cutie Pops and La Dee Da clothes are all too small.  I thought Ever After High might have a chance, though.  C.A. Cupid has a shorter, thicker body than her spooky-chic compadres back at Monster High, so I thought that might be a good match.
That's what I get for trying to think, LOL!  Cupid's dress is WAY too tight for Pix, and the skirt flatters her body about as well as a paper sack does.  That's too bad, because the pink looks good with Pix's bright hair.  Pepper Parsons' dress told a similar tale, but the colors didn't look quite as good together.  That's a huge disappointment that Pix can't share clothes with any of her new friends.  However, I'm only halfway done!  Some of these dolls might be able to wear Pix's clothes...
...or not.  Too short for Sloane.
Too short for Cupid too.
This dress is so short on Cleo that her hip joints are showing!
SCORE!!!  Pepper can wear this dress with no problems at all.  Getting her paws threaded through the sleeves was a bit fiddly, but other than that Pepper is good to go.

The pajamas are a bit more promising:
The top is short on Sloane and Cleo, but it doesn't look so bad if you don't mind crop tops.  The set is too big overall for Sloane; the pants gap at the waist and want to fall down.  Cleo has the opposite problem; the pants look good on her, but they're tight enough that she can't pull them all the way up. 
Cupid can wear the pajamas a little better, but the top is still too short.  The outfit in general is tight on Cupid's chunky little body, so I don't recommend shoving these pajamas onto your Ever After High dolls, lest you stress the fabric.
Once again, Pepper wins this one.  The pants are a little tight, but not enough to concern me.  She can wear this like a champ. 

Out of curiosity I trotted out the Novi Stars, Sila and Mallie.  Talk about odd couples!
These spacey little minxes have smaller bodies than any playline doll I've got, so just for giggles I'm going to try Pix's clothes out on them.  I have my doubts about Mallie since her arms can't detach, but it's worth a looksie anyway.
That turned out to be a good idea!  The over all fit is a bit loose and the pants sag a teensy bit on Mallie, but I'm satisfied enough to call this a success.  Heck, Sila's stock shoes even match Pix's sash!  If I had something else to put Pix in I'd leave these gals this way awhile!  Threading Mallie's arms through those holes proved to be fairly easy, by the way.  It takes a little patience, but nothing more.  In short, Pix can't wear anyone else's clothes, but Equestria Girls, Pinkie Cooper, and Novi Stars can wear Pix's clothes.  You might also run into the occasional piece that fits an Ever After High doll, but I doubt that will happen often.

I've already touched on some of the accessories since I've described Pix's hair clips, but for the sake of completion I'll go over the other items as well.  Pix's pet firefly is probably the most important of these accessories; in her bio Pix proclaims a deep love for him.  I can't say that I blame her.  For a hunk of plastic he's pretty cute!
Firefly is made of translucent chartreuse plastic.  His features are painted, and his wings are yellow as apposed to the pink wings of the big Pix's pet.  He's smaller than the pets that my full-size Mint and Blossom came with.

From left, Mint's dog, Pix's firefly, and Blossom's butterfly

Remember when I said that Firefly was the best of Pix's accessories?  Yeah...I meant it.  The comb is plastic and cannot be used for doll hair or human hair.  It's cute, but a waste of plastic.
And lastly there's this thing.
I haven't tried wearing this in my hair (yet), but it looks super uncomfortable.  I'll try it out and get back to you on that.

Now let's conclude this auction.

*Blank face which, depending on the eye color can be somewhat creepy.
*Paint is offset in places.
*Clothes are somewhat skimpy and can't be reliably shared with other dolls.
*Not very flexible; Pix can't sit worth a dang, and the mobility in her neck is not the greatest.
*Accessories, for the most part, are extraneous pieces of plastic crap.
*Small pieces are included, important if you're someone with young children (or pets).
*Somewhat difficult to dress, and sleeve seams look flimsy.
*Prices are ridiculous in some areas.

*Changing hair is a cute feature and works well.
*Doll can stand on her own if wearing shoes.
*Hair and clothes are made of bright, cheerful colors.
*Cute details, like the hair flowers
*Small; these dolls are easy to carry and don't easily double as clubs, like the big Lalaloopsies do.
*Clothing is well-made for the most part.  Just don't pull on the collar!
*Extra outfits (WARNING: not all of these dolls come with extra outfits)
*Doll is faithful to her larger counterpart without being a carbon copy.
*Hair is easier to style and untangle than that of most dolls.
*Shoes go on and stay on; they aren't constantly falling off.
*Smaller, lighter alternative to the big dolls. 

In all honesty, these Lalaloopsy Girls are cute dolls.  I like the direction that MGA Entertainment is going here, even if the high school theme is getting a bit clich├ęd for dolls.  I also like how the characters hold onto their living rag doll theme, even though they are clearly dolls meant for kids who should be out of the rag doll stage.  I advise caution, though:  if you hate extraneous bits of plastic that are supposed to be "accessories," or if you have creatures that put things in their mouths, OR if you are bugged by dolls that can't wear a wide range of clothes, DON'T GET THIS DOLL.  Stick with one of the regular Lalaloopsies or one of the Babies (one of which will be the subject of the next review).  However, if the above things don't apply to you and you want one of these, knock yourself out!  I especially recommend these if you're an ardent fan of one of the represented characters, or if you really, really wanted a certain character in big Lala form but never found her (that was a problem with Mittens Fluff 'n Stuff a few years back), or if you want some new duds for your Novi Stars, OR if you want something cute but don't have a lot of room.  I don't recommend the characters with blue eyes, though.  They're just a tad freaky.

Yours always,

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