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Whoot! I have been lusting after the Monster High dolls for months now, but to my dismay, they’ve been difficult to get my hands on, due to their incredible popularity. I FINALLY got one last Sunday when Jason and I ran by Satan’s Store (aka Walmart) to pick up a few things and buy each other an Easter gift. I got him Legos (hmm…perhaps I can get him to guest post a review?). He got me Ghoulia Yelps from the Skull Shores line, which was the last MH doll left aside from two of the Black and White Frankie Stein dolls. I realize that those are harder to find and will probably have a greater value than Ghoulia, but when was I ever one to collect toys for value? I may pick the B&W Frankie up in the future, but I’m too much of a color-lover to pick her as my first MH doll.

I was, of course, ridiculously excited and couldn’t wait to get Ghoulia home and debox her. I always keep an eye on the fashion doll isles of toy stores to see what is new and interesting, and as I mentioned earlier, I’ve had my eye on the Monster High line for a long time now, but never could find them when I actually had money to spend (and I wasn’t about to pay the inflated prices they sell for on the Internet). I’m not really into the paranormal craze that is so popular right now, but I don’t hate it, either. I really love these dolls because they have such a quirky anatomy, and they’re so dang pose-able. And you know I can’t resist bright hair colors.

Here she is straight from the box. I’m no expert on the back story of the characters, but I do know that Ghoulia is a daughter of the zombies (all of the characters are kids of famous monsters). She has greyish skin and blue hair with grey streaks. I’m not sure how blue hair figures in to the “zombie” theme, but I suspect it got picked because it goes well with her skin. Who’s complaining, anyway? 😉

Look at those hands! Aren’t they so petite and quirky?! Ghoulia’s non-clothing accessories include her stand, hairbrush, and this little island drink in a coconut shell!

Ghoulia’s bangs are hard and crunchy to hold their shape, but the rest of her hair is soft and brushable, and of surprisingly nice quality. I’m not sure how well it would hold up under a child’s rough yanking and brushing, though, since I have no child to test it out on! She has a little red hair clip in her hair which I believe to be a bit of coral reef (not real, of course!).

She also comes with these green sunglasses. They’re rubber-banded to her head in the box, but they fit securely without the rubber band, too.  I imagine it would take a good deal of shaking for them to fall off!

When you removed her glasses, you can see that Ghoulia has bright green eye makeup. You can’t tell from this picture, but it’s actually quite sparkly! Much like the Bratz line, the MH dolls have very large heads compared to their body size, with exaggerated eyes and lips, although they’re more realistic than the Bratz dolls.

You can see from the previous two pictures that Ghoulia has mismatched earrings – a white dangly one on her right-hand side, and a red stud on the left. Her earrings are quite small and are removable, so if you’re thinking about getting a MH doll yourself, be careful about losing them!

When you remove her sheer red skirt (which has a Velcro closure), you can see that she is wearing a black halter-top swimsuit that ties over one shoulder and also has a Velcro closure in the back. I’ve got to say, I love that she is wearing a one-piece swimsuit. It’s incredibly cute, and it’s so refreshing to see a skinny figure in a one-piece! Her clothes seem to be of comparable quality to other doll clothing from play lines. You can also see her red bracelet in this picture. I’m not quite sure it is also supposed to be coral, or if it it fashioned to look like dripping blood as a tie-in to her zombie parentage, but I suspect the latter.

Ghoulia wears red peep-toe heels. The ankle straps match her dripping-blood bracelet and are split in the back so that it is easy to get them on/off.

Here I’ve stripped her naked to give you an idea of her anatomy, and put her between a newer Barbie and a Moxie Girl for comparison’s sake. This is where the fun really begins! Mattel seems to have given up realistic body proportions altogether and just gone for an extreme look with this dolls. Remember the big stink about how Barbie gave young girls’ body image issues? Well, Barbie’s got nothing on the MH line. My Ghoulia makes Barbie look positively chubby! The Monster High dolls give hope to pear-shaped women everywhere, because these dolls’ hips are about twice as wide as their busts. They have an exaggerated sway-back and curvy legs that go on forever. These dolls really make me think of fashion design drawings of unreasonably skinny women. To those of you who worry about your daughter’s body image, this may be a negative thing. After all, Ghoulia does kind of have the stature of a starved child. I don’t buy these dolls for kids to play with, though – I buy them to dress them up, and they suit that need quite well. Their big hips, swayed backs, small chest, and petite arms and legs are basically made for designer clothing (oh, shut up, we all know that stuff isn’t made for real women)! As you can see, MH dolls won’t be trading clothes with Barbies or even Moxie Girlz unless you’re going for a baggy look (which seems a shame to me, since their weird figure is part of what makes the MH dolls so charming!).

One of the best things about the MH dolls is that they’re much more poseable than most fashion dolls. They have joined shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, and knees, which offer any number of posing options. I’ve given some examples above. Overall, though, I would be hesitant to give these dolls to a child that likes to play rough with their dolls, because they seem to me like that would break easily if put under a lot of stress. I’m not going to test this theory out, though, obviously. =P

Overall, I am thrilled to finally have one of these dolls, and I fully expect to buy more when I am able! This particular doll was about $13 at Wal-Mart, and I think that is a fair price for a doll of this quality. I probably wouldn’t pay more than about $15 myself (granted, I’m a very thrifty spender), unless the doll came with a fair number of outfits and accessories. Ghoulia is a great choice if you want a doll that has a neat retro vibe going on. Check back in the future to see more Monster High posts as I make clothes for her and get new dolls!