I never thought I'd say this, but the Spice Girls are actually sort of tame in comparison! Now let's take a look at the dolls.
The prototypes have pretty faces...prettier than the actual girls, I think! Anywho, from what I've read these dolls were supposed to be released in 2006, and I think they were intended to compete with the Bratz and My Scene Barbie. If they'd been released I think they'd have at least moderately successful as they fit into the then thriving trend of pouting dolls in uber-trendy clothes in varying degrees of tackiness. However, a wave of controversy hit before production even started and Hasbro ended up axing the line. CNN even derided the idea, listing the dolls on the year's list of 101 dumb business moves.
Parents and watchdog groups can be meddlesome at times, but I can't say that I blame them for feeling uncomfortable with a line like this. The Pussycat Dolls are hardly what any right-minded mama or daddy would call good role models. The thing of it is this: big-name toy companies have released other dolls in the likeness of other trampy musicians and the dolls have been a hit. I've seen dolls done up like Jennifer Lopez (whom I loathe), Destiny's Child, Brittany Spears, Christina Aguilera, and the Spice Girls, and I don't remember those dolls causing that big of a flack. Okay, I'll admit that Brittany Spears was still in her cutesy "Hit Me Baby One More Time" phase and Beyonce Knowles wasn't prancing around half-naked singing about "who rules this mutha" when the dolls in their likeness were produced, but I think y'all get the point. The world was full of scantily-clad dolls back then, so what was one more? The Bratz were capable of looking like little bimbos and generated a good deal of their own controversy, and they still sold like hot cakes!
My personal take is a bit hypocritical, because I feel a bit conflicted about it all. Probably if I were a mother my feelings would be more against these dolls; I certainly wouldn't encourage a child to listen to that drivel that the band calls music, that much is certain. But when I was a little kid I rarely paid attention to themes or brands, focusing instead on a doll's smile or eyes or hair. Indeed, I remember wanting (and receiving) a doll based on a character from...I thought it was a Beverly Hills 90210 doll, but my online search was fruitless so maybe it was some other television show. Either way I remember wanting her because I liked the way her hair stuck out from her helmet (she was an equestrian). I was entirely too young to be a fan of whatever show it was; I was six and more into cartoons than live-action TV, but that doll called to me and Daddy didn't argue my reasoning. My point is that a lot of kids (or the ones I know, at least) are still too innocent to know whether something is inappropriate or not; they see a pretty face or a particular hair color and that's what they want. If they're anything like my sister the doll's clothes will be coming off anyway, so no worries about indecent outfits.
What do y'all think? Stupid idea on Hasbro's part, or no worse than the Bratz?