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Face Time: a charity doll raises awareness and two teen “living dolls” raise eyebrows on the Net.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

This has been an interesting week—seven days filled with dolls that promise to be made in the image of often-overlooked children, while abald-barbie1 pair of children came to the foreground and demanded to be seen, heard, adored and looked at, via YouTube, of course.

After an online campaign, which had launched on Facebook, brought a massive amount of signatures to Mattel’s attention, the California-based toy company conceded to the group’s requests. A “bald Barbie” will be manufactured and distributed to children’s hospitals and alopecia foundations to be given as comforting playthings and as reminders to children with cancer and other health issues that they are not alone.

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American Horror Story: Should a John Wilkes Booth doll light a powder keg of controversy?
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

For consistent readers of my blog, you know that I often discover issues concerning dolls in the most unlikely places. This week, I initiallyLincoln-Assassin-Bobble1 came across a story on “The O’Reilly Factor” that had host, Mr. Bill O’Reilly, seeing more red than usual. The FOX News Channel—with its “fair and balanced” tagline—could easily change it to “fairly ball-jointed” because their news anchors do spend hours of airtime covering doll concerns. It is always highly entertaining to watch the FOX “foxes,” the very good-looking women who populate the station, reporting on the latest Barbie ballyhoo or breast-feeding brouhaha.

 

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Lady Luck: RuPaul may be a walking-talking doll, but what happened to the fashion figure?
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Is it possible to be ahead of one’s time, and then behind one’s moment to shine, followed by the exact moment when the rest of the worldrupauldragrace1 has caught up and all constellations align for perfect acceptance? If that sounds all sort of “touchy/feely” or New Age nonsensical, I apologize. I just don’t know how else to explain the career of RuPaul and his/her emergence as a charismatic and enjoyable television commodity.

 

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China Doll: The forbidden doll photography of Liu Xia strikes a blow for freedom and democracy.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

A rose is a rose is a rose, but a doll is not always a doll. At least, that’s the guiding force behind the photos of Chinese poet and artist Liudollinculture_NEW Xia. In a society like ours, where every person with a keyboard and a camera phone can become an Internet gadfly—I’m looking in the mirror here—it’s difficult to imagine a culture where access to television, radio, the Web, and public discourse is denied daily. In fact, it’s beyond being denied—it’s squelched, squashed, and declared “a crime against the state.”

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Oscar Opus: A cyber awards show made for collectors to feel like a red-carpet winner!
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

The fantasy of million-dollar fashions and age-defying figures that is Hollywood’s most breathtaking night has ended, and the awardsoscarstatues1 season has come to a Technicolor end. Or has it? I think host Billy Crystal was right when he joked about the TV audience watching “a bunch of millionaires giving golden statues to one another.” Admittedly, there is something odd about seeing highly paid people, who already receive accolades and applause, garnering more trophies and prestige. Still, the night is festive, glamorous, and allows movie lovers a chance to revel in the spectacle and place some wagers on the side. It is the Super Bowl for cinephiles! (I did very, very well with my Academy Award picks.)

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Toy Fair 2012: My fair ladies, lambs, long lines, and laughter.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Toy Fair is a unique and magical place. And what makes the February staple at New York City’s Javits Center even more unusual is thetoyfaircutoutkids1 total absence of real children. Yes, a huge cut-out of curly-haired, smiling moppets greet you as you slog in from the frigidly cold Manhattan streets, but the real deal is nowhere to be seen. Kids are an exotic rare creature at Toy Fair—seeing one or two (the offspring of some determined dealers or manufacturers) is like spotting a unicorn or an original swirl-ponytail Barbie #1, Mint in Box, at a local garage sale.

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Hits and Misses: Which doll would you like to see on the big screen?
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

The other day while watching the Super Bowl—no, not watching it, rejoicing in it—I had to do a double take. During one of the manybattleship1 advertisements that bookend the pigskin plays, I thought I saw a line of text scrawl across the screen about “Hasbro, the company that gave you the Transformers.” And then, lo and behold, there came a series of scenes that depicted fleets, and vessels, and men in uniform, and women with headsets on, and finally Liam Neeson. Most of the action seemed to be taking place on a battleship.

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Too Hot to Handle? Computer geeks, Middle East hierarchies & public demand combust.
In the Spotlight
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   

Writing a doll blog makes me supersensitive to what is selling and what is percolating in the toy industry. Hoping to brew a finely tunedstevejobsdoll1 sense for what is going on, I’m also called upon to meditate and ruminate on all these developments and how they impact our daily lives. So, blending the practical (doll sales) with the philosophical (my blog ramblings), if a doll DOESN’T sell in the forest of toy stores and websites, does it still make a sound? In the case of this week’s blog, it makes an even bigger sound than you could ever imagine.

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