LIBERATIONS 8 & 9: ANASTASIA & DIMITRI “ALWAYS & FOREVER” GIFT SET
July 13, 1999
I admit it, I’m a sucker for a good romance. Anastasia has its problems, but they never occur to me while I’m watching it. The extensive line of dolls, put out by Galoob, were impressive in both their depth and quality. Unfortunately, the line was not the huge success Galoob was hoping for, and most of the dolls later turned up in the clearance bins. There was also a fabulous line of fashions, which I saw once long before the movie hit and have regretted not snatching up ever since. Other characters who received their own dolls were Czar Nicholas and the Dowager Empress Marie, complete with grey hair and molded wrinkles.
The Grand Duchess
Complicated hairstyles don’t always translate well to the smaller doll scale, and this one is no exception. Without her tiara, her hair looks more than a little strange. Despite the odd finish on top of her head, I have to admit I’m very impressed that they managed to get that french twist in place. Her face paint is minimal and very stylized, with thick brows and eyelashes that turn up at the corner. The face mold is nicely done, with a lovely wide smile. Her jewelry is little silver studs, and a silver and gold ribbon choker that can’t come off without removing her head.
This body mold presents a very slim silhouette and is quite poseable. Her knees have a reasonable range of motion. Her waist is a ball joint that bends nicely. Her arms have an interesting elbow that rotates a full 360 degrees! In most positions the arms have natural looking poses thanks to the marvelous job they did on her hands (see photo below). The torso also has a nicely molded collarbone which gives additional definition when wearing her shoulderless gown. I was disappointed when Galoob’s next line of fashion dolls, the Spice Girls, didn’t use these great molds, but they redeemed themselves by bringing them back into use for the Concert Collection dolls.
Anastasia’s Doll Scorecard Face: A Body: A Hair: B- Overall: B+
Galoob actually did two head molds for Dimitri, the slightly mussed one shown above and a slicked-back style used for the Paris Romance Dimitri (the one in the classic tuxedo). Both have the great molded hair lines and contrasting black and brown paint that gives such depth to the this mold. The features are sharp and chiseled, with deep brown eyes and another big smile.
Dimitri’s body mold is different, to say the least. After all the work they put into making Anastasia posable, this poor guy didn’t even get a twist waist! Even more curious, he has molded on underwear and little love handles that pouch out slightly above the underwear line. Aside from the love handles, Dimitri has a slightly muscular build with some minor definition on the torso. There is also some nice detailing with the neck and collarbone. His arms are nicely done, with the elbows partially bent and the hands neither flat forward or flat to the side.
Dimitri’s Doll Scorecard Face: A Body: B Flexibility: C- Overall: B
As you can see, the cheap polyester satin did not handle being wadded up in the box well. Other than the fabric wadding, this outfit is nicely done. The skirt has several panels and a full train, although unfortunately no petticoat. The front of the gown is accented with a swatch of white and some fabulous gold ’embrodery’. There is more gold trim along the waist and the neckline. The sleeves are lovely gossamer things. The blue sash is attached at the shoulder, unfortunately, and it won’t be coming off easily. Accessorizing is done with soft peach low heels (which fit the Queen Amidala dolls, hooray!) and a ‘crystal’ tiara.
Anastasia’s Outfit Scorecard Fabric: B+ Style: A- Execution: C+ (one grade lost for velcro) Overall: B
Galoob used a huge variety of fabrics in Dimitri’s suit. The jacket and pants are a textured brown and black stripe suiting. The jacket has tons of interfacing and other reinforcing to keep it looking neat, and it fastens with plastic snaps. The oxford is a pale green cotton (the color doesn’t show up well in the photos), the vest is teal plush, and the tie is satin. The outfit has really nice tailoring, although I wish the pants and shirt were separate. The black shoes highlighted something I hadn’t actually noticed: all the dolls in this line, as well as their shoes, have left and right feet!
Dimitri’s Outfit Scorecard Fabric: A+ Style: A- Execution: B- (one grade lost for velcro) Overall: A-
Don’t they look cute? Dimitri models a Ken Fashion Avenue outfit, while Anastasia wears a Teen Skipper dress. Both have to keep wearing their own shoes, though.