Thursday, February 28, 2013
Oz the Great and Powerful dolls: The Wizard and Glinda
I've picked up the Oz-themed issue of D23 magazine, and the junior novelization, and now two dolls.
"Wait," you might say. "Jared, you're a guy, and you bought dolls?"
"Well, you ordered them online, right? You wouldn't be seen picking them up in a store, right?"
Oh, I did. And my dad was with me when I did. And a guy at the register processed my transaction. He mentioned he wasn't sure about James Franco playing the Wizard. I just replied that it's the first time the young version of the Wizard's appeared in a movie. Let's just say that when it comes to life, there's bigger things to worry about than buying Oz dolls at a store.
I decided to get The Wizard—or, as the box says "Oz (Oscar Diggs)"—and Glinda mainly because they're L. Frank Baum's characters. I could have also picked up Evanora and Theodora, but I am on a budget. Anyway, if I decide I really want them, the way Disney can really saturate the market, I'm sure I could pick them up later after they've been marked down.
It's worth noting that these dolls are by Tollytots, and there's a fifth doll of the China Girl, but she's not in scale. Sadly, there is no toy representation of Finley the Winged Monkey, which is too bad, because he's such a nice-looking Winged Monkey. I wouldn't mind army-building a flock of Finleys. The Disney Store has an exclusive line of dolls, featuring better sculpts and much more elaborate clothing and nicer packaging. However, those dolls are more expensive than these (almost twice the price), and there's no longer a Disney Store in Springfield. (They do, however, also have a Finley plush toy, but he's not in scale, and way too pricey to army build.) Also, the Disney Store line doesn't have Theodora and has the Wicked Witch of the West instead.
That being said, although the Tollytots dolls aren't as nice as the Disney store line, they're not bad. The face sculpts are rather generic doll faces rather than being modeled after James Franco and Michelle Williams.
The quality of the clothing is rather cheap. It's nicely designed, but the material is cheap and looks like that if you tried to modify it, it'd start to unravel quickly. (So don't.) Glinda has a dress that begins thin around her thighs and then fluffs out near the knees. She also has a crown sewn into her hair, which is pretty nicely styled for a doll. She has high-heeled boots that go all the way up to her knees. To help them go on easily, they're slit on the back. For an accessory, she comes with a wand, which you can't keep in her hand without the aid of something else, like glue, blue-tack, or one of the many rubber bands that help package the doll.
Oscar has a suit jacket, striped pants, a bowtie (which makes him cool), and a shirt that has the front of a vest sewn on. He has some nicely detailed boots and a hat which fit on nicely. However, his hair doesn't look so great since it's a short length and can't be styled in many ways. I saw someone say they had styled it with gel, which seemingly worked well. For accessories, he has a bag (which, again, takes an additional substance to make him hold) and...
...China Girl. That's right, one of Oscar's accessories is another character. This tiny version of China Girl is articulated at the shoulders and the legs right under the skirt. It's difficult to make her stand on her own, especially since her legs are made of a less hardy plastic than her body and head. Oscar can hold her, however.
The dolls also come with a charm, which is a piece of plastic on a tiny ring, shaped like the first letter of the accompanying character's name. (Glinda has a G, Oscar has an O, etc.)
The big nightmare here is the packaging. Getting the dolls free requires battling through a mass of tape, ties, and rubber bands. This might make some decide to leave them in the box for collectors, but if you were serious about collecting, the Disney Store versions would likely be what you'd go for. (Though you might pick up the Tollytots Theodora doll, since that character is unrepresented in that line.)
And in the end, don't bother picking these up if collecting Oz dolls or toys isn't your thing. As it is, these are actually the first mass-produced Oz toys in my collection. They're pretty nice, actually.