ASM Toy Fair 2005
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Welcome to ASM's Toy Fair 2005 Coverage!

Mattel - Barbie Toys Report

Amy Lipkowitz, General Reporter
02-20-2005

Last Toyfair, Mattel put a strong focus on storyline-based Barbie collections. There was the CaliGirl line, which was a serial story about the adventures of Barbie and her friends in California... and the momentous split between Barbie and Ken. There was also Barbie in the Princess and the Pauper (her first musical role), Barbie in Fairytopia, and so much more.

This year, Barbie combines storyline-based play with fun dolls that connect Barbie to culturally relevant icons that young girls will recognize.

American Idol Barbie, for example, traces Barbie and her friends' rise to reality TV stardom as they participate in the famous musical competition show. The Spring 2005 dolls are the "audition phase", and come with a "karaoke machine" that plays a real musical clip. The Fall 2005 dolls will be the "competition phase", and feature new outfits, and a child-sized microphone that will project sounds through the stage. The dolls also feature a flexible bendable body which allows them wild dance poses.

Upcoming in the American Idol line is a Recording Studio Playset, which comes with a child-sized headset for recording voice clips and mixing with pre-recorded beats, or the build-in digital FM radio. The doll-sized Recording Studio also comes with a recording light and various lounge accessories.

Check out these pictures here.

Just like in the American Idol show, fans will be able to vote for their favorite doll in May at Barbie.com.

Fairytopia

The Fairytopia line of dolls has been building up momentum, with various sizes of dolls ranging from the standard Barbie-sized Wonder Fairies, to the tiny plastic Sprites, to the Petal Pixie fairies and mermaids, to the slightly larger Flower Fairies and Elf dolls.

This year, the Fairytopia CG movie will be released, along with several doll-size and pocket-sized playsets representing environments from the movies. Currently, three characters from the Fairytopia movie are available in stores: Barbie as Elina, Dandelion, and Dahlia. Also on display at Toyfair were two additional fairies with transparent arms and translucent legs, with glitter suspended in the plastic. According to packaging mock-ups, the blue crystalline fairy is Jewelia, and the pink gem-like fairy is Crystal. These fairies have clip-on wings, and a light-up feature that we unfortunately were not able to see in person.

Another size-class of doll spotted at Toyfair were some large-headed tiny-bodied dolls with bright-hued hair. These were displayed in teardrop packaging as "Jewel Necklace" dolls.

Check out these pictures here.

Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus

For those doll fans who prefer pretty princesses to fanciful fairies, Mattel has its first original fairytale movie. "Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus" is a CG movie that comes with four 3D glasses for home viewers to enjoy the film in full 3D.

Barbie will play Annika, who explores the secrets of Cloud Castle. Other dolls include the multi-ethnic Rayla the Cloud Queen, and the handsome Prince Adrian (not a Ken doll, according to our guide).

Just as Barbie's fairy friends come in a variety of sizes, the titular pegasus for Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus is available in a multitude of sizes. A trio of tiny pegasus ponies will be made available, and they work perfectly with the separately sold Magical Cloud Kingdom castle playset. Barbie's little sister Kelly and her friends will be sold astride wee pegasus colts. A larger Pegasus with real combable mane and tail will be available as well, with 3D glasses. Finally, a styling-head pegasus will also be available, for hair play and making people an offer they can't refuse.

No Barbie movie is complete without some animal sidekicks. This year, the interactive plush buddy is Shiver the polar bear, who shivers and shivers from constant cold. When hugged, Shiver's cheeks light up as she blushes and stops shivering. Little girls can also play with the Musical Magical Wings, a pair of electronic wings that has four speeds of flutters, and motion-activated sounds.

The movie is set for a fall release, and hopefully the dolls will start hitting the stores in advance of its release.

Check out these pictures here.

Barbie Fashion Fever

Fashion Fever is one of the non-story oriented lines that debuted last year. The core of the line is a series of dressed dolls in plastic tubes that double as display cases. The doll's stand is built into the base of the tube, so the doll stands perfectly in the tube. The dolls are available in multiple ethnicities and many different hair colors and make-up styles.

In addition to the dressed dolls, a line of color-coordinated fashion and accessory packs have been released. The fashions include coordinated outfits, mix and match tops and bottoms, hats, handbags, and shoes. Unlike traditional fashion packs, the Fashion Fever outfits come on fashionable stylized mannequins, allowing for display as well as play. Furthermore, the packaging is color-coded so that the different outfits and accessories can be harmoniously matched up.

The Fall 2005 line will introduce a new male doll to the line, as well as "lifestyle elements" such as the girl-sized notepads and stationery included in the "Styles for 2" doll-and-accessory giftsets. There will also be large Fashion Fever styling heads, for make-up application and fun.

Hopefully the male Fashion Fever doll means that we can eventually see male fashions sold separately as well.

Check out these pictures here.

MyScene

The big MyScene news is the upcoming movie, MyScene Goes Hollywood, in which the characters from the world of MyScene Barbie are cast in a Lindsay Lohan movie. Despite the glamor of Hollywood (and MyScene Barbie's first celebrity friend, Lindsay Lohan doll), the focus of the movie will be the values of friendship and honesty.

The MyScene Goes Hollywood line will include many playsets and accessories, including a limo and various show-biz related scenes and fashions.

Separate from the MyScene Goes Hollywood line is the Swappin' Styles. Early reports spoke of dolls who would have swappable hairstyles as well as fashions. What did this mean? Would they have plastic coiffs that popped on and off? Would they be bald (or molded-hair) dolls with wigs?

As it turns out, the Swappin' Style dolls come with two extra torsos on special stands. Using a unique mechanism, the doll's torso from the collarbone up comes off, and can be replaced with one of the extra torsos. Each torso comes with different make-up to match the hair style's mood, whether it be formal, sporty, or casual. The dolls have pierced ears, and many mix and match accessories such as shoes, earrings, necklaces, and more.

Check out these pictures here.

Finally, the MyScene line has a series of large plush dolls called Stylin' Friends. These slightly muppety dolls feature huggable plush bodies, real hair that can be combed and styled, clothes such as a padded bra, manicure and pedicure options, and share-and-wear accessories.

Barbie Famous Friends

Finally, Barbie will also have her share of celebrity tie-ins and easily recognized cultural icons. Barbie Loves Spongebob Squarepants is joined by Barbie Loves Shrek (complete with ogre-ear headband) and Barbie Loves Mickey Mouse. Dolls in the likenesses of Destiny's Child and Lee Ann Rimes will be produced, as well as the protagonist from Disney's teen sitcom That's So Raven (dressed in her outfit from the opening sequence).

Check out these pictures here.

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