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Thursday, July 6, 2017

Throwback Thursday review: Bratz Study Abroad Raya

RagingMoon1987 again, with another Bratz doll.  There was a time when I took the Bratz for granted.  During my teenage and young adult years the Bratz shelves were just as crowded as the Barbie shelves, and for a short while I wondered if the Bratz had what it took to unseat Barbie from her Queen of the Dolls throne.  Then MGA called for a hiatus, the second in less than five years, and I thought that would be the end of it.  Then suddenly the Bratz were back in business again...but only very briefly.  They've since disappeared from store shelves again, and I think it's for good this time.  Either way here's my newest (and possibly last) Bratz doll, Study Abroad Raya.  I've had her since...oh, I think it was shortly before Christmas of 2015 that I got her.
As I've noted once before, Raya has made appearances in the past; her Magic Hair self had tan skin and extremely fair hair, so maybe...possibly, this is the same character.  And maybe not...it doesn't matter, really.  I originally had no intent on buying one of the new Bratz at all.  Sure, they were cute and all that, but I've already got a box full of Bratz and Bratzillaz.  I was originally only interested in the clothes for my older girls, but the scuttlebutt online is that the new clothes don't fit the old dolls so I decided I'd need a new one to fit the new clothes.  I'll find out later on whether the new clothes fit the old Bratz, but first, the doll line.  According to the box, the dolls in the "Study Abroad" line have been participating in some sort of foreign exchange program.  In other words, another school-themed line of sorts.  The dolls thus come with themed outfits and accessories; Jade, my usual go-to doll, has spent some time in Russia, while Raya (or "Sun Rayz," her ridiculous MGA-given nickname) has been to Baja, California.  But enough chatter, let's take a look at her.  At first glance Raya looks like your run-of-the-mill Bratz doll, and for the most part she is...with a few critical differences.  So let's begin.  Raya's hair.
I love the color; Raya's hair is dirty blonde with lighter highlights mixed in, like she's been hitting Baja's beaches on a regular basis.  I love the style; loose with bangs and two small braids on the side.  The braids are fastened with elastic and are well-executed.
I even love the fiber; thank God, it's saran and not nylon.  I don't love the length; long hair tends to get caught in long earrings, so I tied Raya's hair back.  The length made me even more thankful that her hair is not nylon.  Nylon hair is bad, and long nylon hair is VERY bad.  Overall, this hair is a tremendous improvement over Style It! Bratz hair and Bratzillaz hair.  It's surprisingly thin along the lower back hairline, though.  That surprised me.
At first glance, the face resembles your typical Bratz face.
Big eyes?  Check.  Big lips?  Check.  Bold makeup?  Well, not as bold as that of some of my other girls, but bold enough that I'm calling this one a check.  With three checks, Raya has the basic look down pat.  However, when I put her with my older girls, the differences become more obvious.  Here she is with my first-wave Jade (2002, left) and with Style It! Tessa (2011, right).  Kindly ignore the mystery stains of God-knows-what on Tessa's face.
Raya's face looks younger and more...well, more innocent than Jade's and Tessa's.  Her eyes are wide open, as opposed to the heavily-lidded gazes of her predecessors, and she has more eyelashes painted in.  Her eyebrows are also softer.
I prefer the older Bratz eyebrows; they can be sweet, sassy, or downright snarky depending on how I tilt the doll's head.  On the other hand, Raya's eyebrows are more detailed.  They have a couple of separate hairs painted in, which is something I've never seen before.  Her eyes are also more detailed, with iris lines in tow and two reflecty dots per eye, versus the single dots in Jade's and Tessa's eyes.
I love Raya's eye color, by the way.  I'd expected her eyes to be hazel, brown, or green, but instead they're a pale gray with darker gray borders.  Not the first time a doll has surprised me with gray eyes.

Before I move on, I want to take a brief digression down Memory Lane.  Before the first redesign, Bratz eyes had a lot of variation in placement, while after the first redesign all the Bratz had eyes that looked towards their left.  Now most of the new Bratz have eyes that look straight ahead and slightly upwards, and Raya is no exception.  I'd hoped desperately that MGA Entertainment would start varying the eye positions again, because side-glancing eyes aren't seen as often as eyes that stare straight ahead.  Alas, MGA pulled the plug before eye position could vary much in that last line.

Moving along, lips.
The paint on Raya's lips also strays from what I once perceived as the "Bratz norm."  They're big and beautiful, done in a red-orange paint that looks good with Raya's skin, but they're also...well, they're too glossy to be matte lips, but they have no shimmer.  With the exception of a couple of my Bratzillaz, all of my other Bratz dolls have lips that shimmer.  Not a huge deal, really; Raya's lips have the basic shape and that's what matters.  Well, that and the lips are well painted.  Raya's lips are straight and they don't have any dings in the paint, which can sometimes be a problem with mass-produced dolls.  They lack the detail that my other Bratz have in the lip area, but that's my only complaint.

Like Barbie, Bratz have a few different head molds that are used from time to time.  One has a closed mouth (left) and one has a slight opening for some teeth (right).
Some also have what collectors term "fish lips," which is an oft-derided paint job rather than a face mold.  Tessa has these fish lips, as do Shania (top right), Nadine (bottom left), and Maci (bottom right).
Shania is the only member of the Style It! line with a closed mouth and oddly, the only one with any visible attitude, but I digress.  Raya, thank God, does not have fish lips.  She has an open mouth like my Cloe does, though her teeth are not painted in.  I like this effect as it gives Raya a Steffie vibe (I'm a huge Steffie fan), but it also gives Raya a...well, a "sweet" sort of look not often found in the Bratz world.  One would think that since Cloe and Raya have similar heads, they'd have the same head mold, but if you look closely it's clear that these two molds are not the same at all.
Cloe's head is round, and Raya's head is more oval in shape.  That can only mean that these new Bratz got a complete retooling, head and all.  While I am not one to tinker around with something that isn't broken, I like the new head and the new face.  It's got all the components that a Bratz face should have.  If I had any critiques, it would be the eyebrows, which just aren't expressive enough to suit me.  Luckily, Raya's bangs cover them, so she dodges the too-sweet bullet that some of the last Bratz had

Like the head, the new Bratz body is similar to the old bodies, but not exactly like them...and here is where things start to go rotten in Denmark.  Here's how Raya's body (center) compares visually to Jade's (left) and Tessa's (right).
Jade's body has an hourglass shape with thick thighs, while Tessa's body has a wider waist and a smaller bust.  Raya's body is slimmer than both Jade's and Tessa's around the chest, and wider at the hips.  Her torso has a sway back and a popped-out butt, similar to a Monster High body (doll in the comparison is Skull Shores Frankie Stein).
All three dolls have hard plastic bodies and rubbery arms, but Raya's arms are slimmer.  The rubbery material and the slim-bodied shape make for some highly bendy arms.
The arms could theoretically be crossed (Miss Emily's doll Sadie could hold hers crossed), but Raya can't hold hers crossed.  I think it's a shame these arms didn't have some sort of armature inside; they're slim enough that it could've worked, sort of like those Gumby-esque toy rabbits that we used to get in our Easter baskets.  But I can also think of a number of reasons why MGA didn't do such a thing, so maybe it's good that these arms can't bend and stay bent.  Notice the difference in hand shape, by the way.  Jade's hands are graceful, Tessa's hands are realistic, and Raya's hands are...long and skinny!!!
Raya's legs are different from both Jade's and Tessa's.  She's slimmer in the hips and in the calves, and she also has external knee joints.
Tessa has internal click joints in her knees, and Jade doesn't have any knee joints at all.  Indeed, I didn't run into a Bratz doll with knee joints until 2005 (UPDATE:  first-wave Jade's knees do bend; I'm only now learning this after fourteen years, LOL).  Anyway, Raya's knees are more like Bratzillaz knees than old-style Bratz knees, only a lot slimmer (doll in the comparison is Bratzillaz Magic Night Out Yasmina).
The mobility in these knees is average, better than Tessa's click knees and Winx Club Musa's warpy old spaghetti knees, but nowhere near as good as the robustly-constructed Bratzillaz knees or LIV knees.  Much to my delight, these knees do rotate a little.  Raya's ankle "joints" are tight, so the knees' rotation makes it easier to pose her legs and feet.  Because of these rotating joints Raya can sit cross-legged, something that precious few of my other dolls can do.
Unfortunately the knees also make Raya's stance unstable.  They are very stiff right out of the package, and their slim construction makes them feel fragile.  Due to this slim build and the initial stiffness of these joints, I recommend being extremely careful with Raya's knees until you've played with them a bit.  They have a better range of motion than Tessa's knees (and Jade's too, as it happens), but they're nowhere near as strong.

The hips are your average dolly hips; they are hinge-jointed and pivot around their anchorage.  Raya can sit...
...do almost-complete lateral splits...
...and some fairly decent front-back splits.
Raya's hips have an odd ratchet joint that I'm not quite used to, and this makes lateral splits tricky to achieve.  See the teeth inside there?
Once again, I advise care when flexing your doll this way; if treated roughly she could break.  Don't try to force these leg joints into a position.

Raya's shoulders are a huge disappointment, particularly when compared to the motion of past Bratz dolls.  They are ball-jointed, but the soft plastic arms cause a lot of friction against their hard plastic anchors.  Therefore, the mobility of this joint is not good at all.  My first wave Jade doll's arms stick out a bit too, but not as badly as Raya's do.
In fact, these shoulders are so stiff that Raya's arms permanently stick out from her sides a bit.  I can't make them stay down any further than how they're held in the picture above.  Raya's stiff shoulders and tottery knees make her look like she's constantly fighting to maintain her balance, and indeed, this is how I have to pose her if I want her to stand on her own.
Raya's neck is sub-par to the other Bratz necks in that it can turn but not tip.
Alrighty, so far Raya's body falls a little flat.  She does better than some of them in the knee department, but not as good as her more recent predecessors.  How does she do in the clothing department?  When the first two waves of Bratz dolls came out during my teenage years, each doll came with two outfits, one for day and one for night.  I can remember thinking that that second line would be the last one...HA, little did I know!  The Bratz lasted far longer than two waves, but as the brand aged the second outfit was phased out in favor of separately produced outfits.  The Study Abroad line hearkens back to the early days by also coming with two outfits.  Here's the first one, which Raya wore in the box.
It's a very cute outfit, but I'm not seeing much Baja influence in it unless the bright colors count.  On the plus side, it's wonderful to see a ton of little outfit pieces again.  MGA created layered mix-and-match outfits in the beginning, but by the time the Style It! dolls came out the elaborate outfits had fallen by the wayside.  Thus I'm thrilled to see Raya in such a complete outfit.  Let's start with the jacket.
Wait a minute...who wears a jacket in Baja???  As far south as the place is I doubt it gets cold much, but then again I've seen people in Sarasota, Florida wear sleeves during January.  Both Florida and Baja are pretty far south, so maybe it does get cold there sometimes.  Regardless, Raya is wearing a jacket.  At first glance it looks white, but in truth it's a very light pink with hot pink stitching.  Four silver "buttons" adorn the left front.  In this picture it's also easy to see the dark pink seams that provide a nice visual contrast but are a little slipshod in places.
The sleeves, collar, and front of the jacket are made of this silky material that I can't identify from feel alone, and the back is a white panel of lace.
Now THAT makes more sense.  Lace is light and airy, perfect for Baja's climate, or what I assume it's like.  The sleeve cuffs are trimmed with more of this lace.
The jacket is not lined, and I wish it was.  Raya's hands catch in the seams and make them ravel, and then the raveled ends hang out of the sleeves in a manner similar to the red shorts that my Courtney doll wears.  I clipped off these ends so they wouldn't look too sloppy, but I assume there will be more ends to contend with if I dress and undress Raya aneough.   I hope that this raveling won't compromise the jacket's structural integrity, because it's a cute little item.

The Baja influence is more obvious in Raya's top.
The Bratz aesthetic is also more evident here, as the top is fairly revealing.  It shows a bit of Raya's midriff, as Bratz tops often do.  The material is some sort of jersey-knit stuff with two tulle panels on the chest, and it's printed with a tribal design that I love.  It's printed all the way around too, so MGA has that much over some of Mattel's items.  The top fastens in the back with Velcro, and while it LOOKS strapless, it's actually not.  Two clear elastic bands hold it up.
I have mixed feelings about these bands; they do their job when they're new, but as they age they get brittle and discolored.  Not a huge problem right now, but I'll be keeping an eye on these in the future.

Then there's the skirt, arguably the most eye-catching piece of the ensemble.
The stripes on this skirt make me think of the stripes that are commonly woven into to traditional Mexican blankets and serapes, and the shape is similar as well.  The skirt is asymmetrical and cut at an angle that again mirrors the shape of a serape.  The striped material on top is set at an angle and is hemmed with blue thread.  Underneath that are two layers of stretchy blue...I guess that fabric is tulle, cut in the same shape as the top layer.
The back of the skirt closes with Velcro and bunches up a little in that area.  Not much, but enough that it might annoy those who are OCD about their dolls' appearances (like me).  Encircling the top of the skirt is this belt.
It's made of strips of brown pleather and has a bow sewn to the front.  The ends Velcro together.  It's a nice little accessory, but it's also very small and delicate.  I can picture this piece being the first clothing items to be lost or broken at the hands or a child...or a fumble-fingers like me.

Lastly, shoes.  Or rather, shoe-feet.
Yep, we've witnessed the return of the pop-on, pop-off shoes/feet that are a hallmark of Bratz dolls (and some other dolls too, for that matter).  When the Bratz were the new kids on store shelves, these shoe-feet were quite large, large and heavy enough to help the doll stand unassisted.  By the time the Style It! line came out, the shoe-feet had diminished in size.  Oh sure, they were more proportionate to the doll's body, but that also made it a lot harder for the doll to stay upright.  It got bad enough that some of the dolls were packaged with stands.  Raya's shoes are huge...even bigger than the original Bratz shoes.  I also threw in Costume Bash Jade's dinky little boots for good measure.
The shoes are strappy orange sandals with big "wooden" heels.  Three marigolds adorn the front strap.  The rest of the shoe is unpainted, revealing the plastic underneath.  The plastic matches Raya's skin tone perfectly...and no one else.  Shoe sharing is OUT with Raya.  I thought that Tessa might be a match since she has a tan, but her tan is a different shade altogether.
Tessa looks like she spray-tans, while Raya looks like she tans in a bed.  But in the end it doesn't matter, because Raya's shoes are ill-fitting on my older Bratz anyway.  It takes an unreasonable amount of force to shove these shoes onto the other dolls'...stubs, for lack of a better term, and nine times out of ten they just pop back off.  In fact, it's even tricky to put these shoes on Raya!  Her bendy knees make it hard to apply the correct amount of force required to get the shoe on.  And get this:  the shoes don't help Raya stand any better.  This is the fault of the knee joints rather than the shoe, but I thought I'd throw that out there.

But wait, there's more!  Remember when I said these Study Abroad dolls came with two outfits?  I wasn't lying.  Here's the other one.
Can't beat jeans and a cute top!  The top is a cropped babydoll top.
The print appears to be blue and yellow flowers on an orange background.  It's decorated with a blue satin belt and blue tulle on the bottom edge.  I like the detailing on the collar best, though.  I love the little pleats.
This ruffle is not hemmed, but the armholes are...unlike some of MGA's other outfits.
I would have assumed that with a retro-style top Raya would prefer bell bottoms, but that's not what she came with.  Her jeans are skinny jeans.
I've always had thick hips so I've never been a huge fan of skinny jeans.  These are cute, though.  They have a slightly stripey look to them, and the legs are decorated with...oh, those look like hollyhocks to me.
Lastly, the jeans are topped with a belt.  And guess what the belt buckle is shaped like???
A SUGAR SKULL!!!  Oh my, I love it!  Overall, these pants are nice but I can think of two ways they could be better.  One, they could've been longer.  When the Bratz were a young brand their pants extended down over their feet, and since their feet were big the pants had to be flared at the bottom, like bootcut pants or bell bottoms.  I loved this effect and still do.  Number two, these suckers are pretty tight.  They're tight enough that I have trouble moving Raya's joints, and I already had trouble doing that without the jeans in the way.  So these pants aren't perfect, but they're not terrible either.

Raya's accessories are your typical bits and bobs, some of it useful and some of it crap.  Her useful bits and bobs include jewelry.  Plastic earrings that can be worn by my other Bratz dolls with pierced ears...
...this bland necklace...
...this pink bracelet that has a tiny bit of painted detail...
...a large tote bag that is ridiculously heavy and doesn't hold many of Raya's things...
...this neat headband, which makes me think of Catarina Calaveras's hat decorations...
...and this suitcase, which holds most of Raya's loot but isn't as detailed on the inside as Monster High suitcases were.
The crap bits and bobs consist of this piƱata, which I suppose could make a cute Christmas ornament...
...this cactus, which is quite cute despite being just a hunk of plastic...
...a brush, which serves no purpose whatsoever...
...and a sheet of stickers, supposedly for decorating the suitcase.
I like the jewelry and the suitcase, but I feel like the remaining bits and bobs could've been left out in favor of a second pair of shoes.  Raya's orange sandals are cute, but they won't match everything she's got, and they couldn't be shared back and forth with any of the other new Bratz dolls.  Such a problem wouldn't have been a huge issue with Raya's crony Yasmin, who is also tan...but what if I'd wanted Sasha or Jade???  The mismatch would've been a little obvious then.

I think that covers it!

*Joints are stiff and feel fragile
*Eyebrows are a little bland
*Shoes are hard to get off and on
*Jeans are tight
*Raya has a lot of trouble standing, despite her big shoes
*Comes with plenty of miscellaneous odds and ends that serve no purpose other than to get lost or swallowed
*Clothes cannot be shared with any consistency; none of my old Bratz can wear Raya's clothes or shoes, and only a handful of the other new fashions have pieces that will fit.

*Hair is soft and smooth.  I wish all MGA dolls had this.
*Face is lovely; eyes and lips are both colorful and flatter Raya's darker skin.
*Clothes are appropriately Bratz-like, and there's a lot of pieces to play with.
*Jointed, though the joints aren't great
*Lots of cute little details; I especially love the sugar skull sewn onto the jeans.
*Not all the accessories are miscellaneous pieces of crap.  The headband is particularly cute, having a Day of the Dead theme that I adore.

Raya is a cute doll, but as with Ari Hauntington I just don't think she lives up to the standards set by her predecessors.  She's not as flexible, she doesn't balance as well, and her face is missing some of the spunk that the older Bratz have.  In my life I've seen Bratz dolls that looked a little too snarky, but hey, they ARE called Bratz after all!  A doll line with a name like that can get away with looking a little snarky, but Raya is missing that.  She doesn't have quite the attitude that my old dolls do.  In addition to that, Raya can't share her clothes with her new friends.  I tried fitting the jeans on Cloe, but Cloe's leg stubs (stubs???) proved to be too thick, and the jeans absolutely would not go on.  Nor would the jeans fit the Bratzillaz, whose large feet proved to be too large for the narrow legs.  Shoe sharing is hit and miss; my first wave Jade can wear Raya's shoes if I push and shove, but Cloe cannot.  Tessa can wear the shoes below, but only because her rubbery calves hold them on.  The shoes don't click onto her stubs.
I also tried another pair of shoes on my old Sasha doll because they're the only pair I've got that match her skin, and they didn't work either...nor did the pants that come with this particular outfit.
The exact opposite is true for the next outfit.  Sasha can wear the skirt, but the top barely fastens in the back.  The socks are tight, and the shoes fit but took a lot of pushing to get on.  Shame too, because Sasha looks cute in this.
Poor Sasha, once again left without an outfit that is hers and hers alone...other than her pretty blue stock dress, that is!  I that was a big mistake on MGA's part, not making these new dolls and their clothes compatible with the older dolls.  When I bought all the new outfits I essentially bought items that Raya and Raya alone can wear.  My older dolls can wear the odd piece now and then, like so...
...but for the most part those clothes are strictly for the after-the-reboot Bratz.  To sum it all up, I think this Bratz relaunch was a classic case of fixing something that wasn't broken to begin with.  If MGA had gone with the old bodies, or if they'd left the measurements alone but added joints like my Movie Starz Cloe has, then the Bratz relaunch likely would have been more successful.  Instead we got dolls with faces that lacked the usual Bratz attitude, skinny arms that stuck out, skinny bodies that needed a new size of clothing, hips that got jammed up a lot, knees that were wobbly and flimsy, terrible balance, and shoes that won't fit any of the other Bratz.  Raya does have a few things going for her, including nice hair, pretty face paint, clothes that are colorful and hemmed (unlike Yasmin's new outfit), and clothes and accessories that hearkened back to the day's when ALL Bratz came with two outfits.  On her own, Raya is a perfectly acceptable little doll...but because she comes on the heels of a doll line popular enough to threaten Barbie, and because she differs from her predecessors in several crucial ways, she's little more than an afterthought, a final attempt by MGA Entertainment to grasp something that they let get away.  What a shame, because I really was hoping the Bratz would be big again.  They were a lot of fun while they lasted.


**UPDATE**  The girls with the passion for fashion are NOT gone for good; Isaac Larian apparently announced that the Bratz will be returning again in the fall of 2018.  If this is so, then I desperately hope MGA will go back to basics and stick with what made them great.  Maybe do a remake of the original four or something like that?  Regardless of what MGA does, I hope that this news is true and the Bratz will once again make a comeback.


  1. I have a totally different relationship with Bratz dolls than you do. Bratz came out when I was a mom to a preschooler and a young grade-schooler. They were *definitely* not what myself and the moms I knew (or the dads, for that matter) wanted our daughters to emulate. I think only one of my daughters ever got one as a gift, and that went back to the toy store and my daughter got to pick out something else. Fortunately, they were cool with it, but then neither of my daughters was ever super into dolls. They were happy enough with the dolls that they had.

    1. LOL, I was actually very surprised when Daddy asked me if I wanted a Bratz doll! I grew up in a very conservative home and the Bratz were the last thing I expected Daddy to like; they really can be trampy at times! But then again, I was fifteen when these hit store shelves. Probably if my sister and I had been smaller Daddy would've felt the same way you did. And to show my hypocrisy, I too would think twice before giving a Bratz doll to a younger children. I guess we should thank our lucky stars that things never got worse; remember the dolls that HASBRO wanted to produce!

  2. I never had Bratz growing up, and I never found the old ones very appealing. When the new line came out and failed big time, I managed to snag probably about 20 of them for $5 or less. My daughter and I will occasionally drag them out to play and redress. I think they are cute and have a sweetness to their faces. The biggest thing I don't like is the shoe feet. A few of them pop off and on easily, but most of them are a real battle to get on. That is a major flaw in a kids toy when an adult can't even make it work!

    1. I'm going to have to put that in my list of sayings, because it IS bad when an adult can't make a kids' toy work! Yes, the new shoe-feet don't go on easily; I have to push and shove to get Raya's shoes on, and I have to pull like mad to get them off. The old dolls' shoes weren't usually that bad; my old Meygan occasionally gives me trouble, but the others? No sweat! If the stories of yet another reboot are true I hope MGA addresses that problem.

  3. Bratz have definitely grown on me and I think your Raya is beautiful! It was interesting to see the comparions shots. Bratz were totally off my radar until I started collecting a few years ago as I was probably in college with they first came out. I think they are pretty cute and I think Sasha is my favorite!

    1. Bratz are definitely an acquired taste for some! Gotta admit, they're not gray area! They're worth collecting, though; maybe I'm a bit biased towards the ones I grew up with, but the old ones I think are the best ones. So glad you like Raya and Sasha!

  4. As a young teen, I could not stand Bratz. I found their makeup trashy and their clothes so slutty compared with their Mattel rivals, the My Scene (Your Blonde My Scene, I think you will find she is a Club Birthday Barbie. My first and long favorite My Scene, which is why I recognize her). I loved the My Scene girls' realistically colored and styled clothes, the original first wave Chelsea's denim skirt with a scarf as a belt and Barbie's pants. The jeans the My Scene girls wore.

    It wasn't until I started collecting when I was about 15 years old that I really looked at Bratz for what they were...and I now own about fifty Bratz, equally as many My Scene, a fistful of old Barbies, a few Liv, Moxie Girlz/Teens and more Monster High than I ever thought I'd own...and perhaps about fifty newer Barbies.

    Psst...my latest Bratz was the Study Abroad Meygan who studied in Scotland...maybe I ought to review her once I can get into the Bratz totes in my basement again.

    1. Go for it! I love reading other folks' reviews, and I love Meygan and Scotland! Yeah, I noticed that despite wanting to compete, the My Scene dolls never took it as far as the Bratz did. Granted, I HAVE seen some scantily clad My Scene dolls, but they didn't look too tacky.

      So my blonde My Scene doll is Barbie, not Kennedy! I wasn't sure; they all start to look the same after awhile. I named one Svetlana, so unsure was I about her real name.

    2. ...Okay, some of the later My Scene right before they went down the tubes had gone to a cross between glittery pink Barbie and skimpy Bratz clothes. Have you seen the My Bling Bling dolls? Eesh. Same can be said for Juicy Bling, Club Night and a few other lines.

      And yes, she is Barbie. There's a fairly simple way to tell...while Barbie was part of the My Scene gang, Nolee was the only doll to have her own special eye paint as the Asian character. Barbie, Chelsea, Madison and Kenzie all had very wide open eyes. Later, all the dolls' eyes got a revamp. They had heavily lidded, what are known to My Scene collectors as "Sleepy" eyes. That was when Kennedy took Barbie's place. If you come upon a blonde My Scene, the eyes will tell which character you have. ;)

    3. LOL, My Bling Bling was the very line I was thinking of! That cute fabric, and it was used for little scraps of clothing. Shame because those dolls really could've been pimped out to be extra blingy if Mattel had thought of it. Thanks for the tip on how to tell the My Scene dolls apart, by the way. That may mean that both of my blonde dolls are supposed to be Barbie!