Monday, June 23, 2014

Disney Store 2014 Classic Rapunzel Doll Review

One of the exciting things to come home to was my order from :)  I couldn't wait to see my new Belle and Rapunzel dolls.

I was a little concerned by the box.  It was slightly pushed in on one side (which was difficult to capture in the picture).  Since I've had issues with scrunched boxes in the past, I hoped that the dolls were unharmed.  

Belle and Rapunzel
Sadly, the plastic on Belle's box was scrunched and pressed up against her nose.  I was able to fix the plastic (as you can see from the picture above)... 

...but the nose was irreversibly pressed flat at the tip.

It was hard to capture on camera.  You can see it slightly here...

...but you can really see it in this picture.  See how the end of her nose looks like a straight line?  I hate to be overly picky, but I knew this would bother me each time I looked at her.  I also wanted to have a Belle with a good face for my blog review.  Thankfully, Disney Store's excellent customer service saved the day again.  I called and explained the situation, and they offered to send me a replacement at no extra charge.  They requested that I donate my first Belle to a charity of my choice.  So, once "new Belle" gets here, this one will go to Goodwill, hopefully to someone who isn't as picky as I am. :}

But let's move on to the review of Rapunzel! 

This year's Rapunzel is just breathtaking.  She looked so beautiful in the box. :)

Side view

Back view.  I love the picture of the doll on the back.  Interestingly enough, the boxes this year have no artwork of the original princesses on them.

Other side view.

Top of the box.  The boxes are much thinner this year.

A few other details:

Bottom of the box with the shipping label.

Rapunzel was held in place with the typical thread and twist ties...and those annoying plastic ties in her head. :{

The twist tie around her waist came out easily once I opened the back of her dress. 

Almost completely free!

Her hands were held in place by clear plastic pieces attached to the cardboard, connected to her hands by clear rubber bands.  These were very easy to remove. 

Rapunzel's skirt had the typical paper stuffing to make it poof out, but I was surprised to find that she also had paper wrapped around each leg.

The paper wrapping went all the way up to her underwear.

And here's a look at her out of the box!

I'm very pleased with the look of this doll.  Her facial expression and more movie accurate dress are perfect.

And speaking of her dress, here's a closer look. 

The Bodice

The Skirt

My Rapunzel's bodice is slightly crooked.  As you can see in this picture, the left of her dress (in the right side of the picture) is higher than the right.

A view from the back.  The dress has the typical Velcro closure of the Classic doll line.

Rapunzel has the same articulated arms as her earlier versions, with movement at the shoulders, elbows, and wrists.

She has legs like a Barbie's that click at the knee.  Also, like most Rapunzel dolls, she comes without shoes.

Here's a look at her hair length in the back.  I'll talk a little more about her hair in a bit, but for now, I'd like to move on to my line up of Rapunzel dolls through the years. :)

Here are all of the Classic Rapunzel dolls released so far (not counting the Wedding Rapunzel dolls or Rapunzel dolls from special sets).  From left to right:  2010 Rapunzel, 2011 Rapunzel, 2012 Rapunzel, 2013 Rapunzel, and 2014 Rapunzel.  (Feel free to click on the picture if you'd like to see them closer.)  I thought it would be fun to take a closer look at the dresses and faces of each and compare them.  We'll look at the dresses first.

2010 Rapunzel has the most detailed dress out of all of them.  Small touches, such as the lace trim around the sleeves, skirt, and neckline, the elegant ribbon just under the puffed portion of the sleeves, and the lavender pattern print on the bodice add to the depth of the dress.  Out of all of the dresses, this one is the most accurate to the movie.  

And now we go the the least accurate dress: 2011 Rapunzel's dress.  This was the year that the Disney Store didn't go for movie accuracy, but instead focused on tulle and glitter. ;)  Even Mulan had a glittery tulle skirt this time around!  While this dress still has the lace trim around the neckline, all other trim has disappeared.  This was also the first short-sleeved version of Rapunzel's main dress.

2012 Rapunzel's dress went back to the long, sheer sleeves.  It featured a tulle-less glittery skirt and a dark purple bodice.  

2013 Rapunzel's dress, while back to the short-sleeved design, at least brought back the layered look to the skirt, the lighter-colored bodice, and some pretty detailing on the outer skirt.

Now here's another look at 2014 Rapunzel's dress.  It is so refreshing to see another version of the dress that is quite close to the movie version.  The original dress is still the most detailed, but this one comes very close to it, and is definitely the best Rapunzel dress we've seen in recent years from the Disney Store.

Now on to the faces!

2010 Rapunzel has no eyelashes.  She has green eyes in a sideways glance, odd light green highlights in her eyes, freckles, and light pink lips.  She also has iridescent strands in her hair.

2011 Rapunzel added some eyelashes.  Her eyes are a slightly lighter shade of green (but the green eye highlights are still there).  A touch of pink eye shadow is on her eyelids, and she appears to have a bit more blush.

2012 Rapunzel is what I called the "Barbie Version" of Rapunzel.  She has darker pink lips, eyes in a darker, "prettier" shade, and lighter, fuller eyebrows.  This particular Rapunzel's freckles look a little less prominent, but that's because I lightened them with nail polish remover. :}

2013 Rapunzel has one of my very favorite Rapunzel faces yet.  She kept the darker eye color but toned down the lips a notch.  Her face has a softer, more natural look to it.

I really love my 2014 Rapunzel's face, too.  I think the slightly raised eyebrows give her a sweet, innocent expression that matches movie Rapunzel's facial expression.  I wish her freckles were just slightly lighter (and may modify them in the future), but the freckles do tend to vary from doll to doll, so it's possible that there are some 2014 Rapunzels out there with lighter ones. 

I have to say, this is the first time I've been disappointed by the hair on a Disney Store Rapunzel doll.  One of the things I've always loved about my Classic Rapunzel dolls is the amount of long, beautiful hair they have.  2014 Rapunzel's hair was much thinner by comparison.  I tried to think of how I could best show the differences on camera.  It was difficult to make it really clear, but I'll do my best.  In the above picture, you see my 2013 Rapunzel on the left and 2014 Rapunzel on the right.  This is not a perfect comparison, because 2013's already thicker hair looks even thicker than usual because of the braided style it was in. 

  As you can see from the above picture of 2014 Rapunzel, I barely had to move any hair at all in the back to reveal her scalp.

Even when the hair is hanging normally, it is easy to find thin spots, as demonstrated here...

...and here.

 Here is the back of 2013's head.  It's hard to tell from the picture, but I had to move quite a bit of hair before the rooting beneath became visible.

And when her hair is hanging naturally, you see nothing but beautiful hair.

In fairness to 2014 Rapunzel, here's another shot of her hair that doesn't show through, so some of it is probably the angle. 

It's so hard to tell from a still picture, but the amount of hair is so drastically different on these two.  2013 Rapunzel's hair is thicker and heavier.  It almost feels like real hair.

2014's, by contrast, is much thinner and lighter.  As soon as I picked up this doll for the first time out of her box, I could tell she had less hair because she was so much lighter.

Again, the pictures don't do it justice, but here's a look at 2013's from the back...

...and 2014's.

I thought another way to show the difference would be in the thickness of the braids.  Here we have my 2012 Rapunzel on the left and 2014 on the right.  Notice how much thicker 2012 Rapunzel's braid looks?

Here's a closer look: 
2012 Rapunzel

2013 Rapunzel (Okay, that didn't really work because I took a closer picture of this braid. :}  Hopefully you get the idea, though.)

I've seen other online pictures of 2014 Rapunzel where her hair thickness was not mentioned, so it's possible that I just happened to get a Rapunzel with thinner hair.  I truly hope that is the case, because it would be a shame if the Disney Store started skimping on hair, improved dresses or not. :(

Here's a look at all five Rapunzels from the back.  Since I have their hair in braids, it's not the greatest comparison on hair length, but I really didn't feel like redoing everyone's hair. :}

I thought it interesting that 2014 Rapunzel's hair is a slightly warmer honey color than the previous versions.

You can really see the difference here.

Here are a few candid shots of 2014: 

So, it's time for my thoughts.  As I mentioned in earlier posts, I'm started a new rating system for my blog reviews.  Each product will have the possibility of 5 points in several different categories.  On special occasions (when I have time and it works out), I'll also have my daughters share their thoughts. :)

Since this is the first time I'm using this system, I've included thoughts on what each category stands for.  As we all become more familiar with the new system, I won't include these.

Pleasing Qualities: (What do I like about the doll?)  4 out of 5
   2014 Rapunzel has a beautiful face and a lovely, movie-accurate dress.  I feel she's a great representation of the movie character.  I'm knocking off a point for the thinner hair and slightly lopsided bodice.

Posability:  (How well does the doll move and hold a pose?)  5 out of 5
   For the design she has, Rapunzel works great.  She holds a pose nicely, and her articulated wrists and elbows make for fun doll photos.  I would love to see the Disney Store come up with a superb design for more articulation in the legs.  However, until they do, I actually prefer the "clicky legs" to the less than satisfactory articulated Princess doll legs we've had in the past. :}  

Playability:  (How well can the doll be played with?)  4 out of 5  
   My three girls all have dolls from the Disney Store and I've been overall very satisfied with they way they've held up.  I knocked off a point because any doll with hair almost to her feet can get a little overwhelming for younger doll enthusiasts. ;)  I'm actually wondering if that is one of the reasons this year's Rapunzel has less hair.  Perhaps the designers at Disney thought that less hair would be easier for the kiddos to manage.  I also made the deduction because I have noticed that the satiny material used for these dolls just does not last long, even with my more gentle daughters.

Price:  (Is the doll affordable?  If it is expensive, is the quality worth the price?)  5 out of 5
   As Disney dolls go, these are a good price, especially if you take advantage of the "2 for $10" offer that usually goes with the Classic doll line. (Sadly, I ordered my two dolls two days too early to get them for $10 each...rats!)  Even at the $16-something you pay for a full-priced doll, I think they are worth it.  Especially since I'm not investing in the super expensive limited edition dolls. ;)

I didn't have a chance to get my girls' thoughts this time around, but I'll be sure to have them chime in for some of my future posts.

Even with the thinner hair, I'm glad I got my newest Rapunzel doll to add to the collection.  If any of you get one, I'd be very interested to see if yours also has thinner hair.  I'm curious if mine is just an odd one in the batch.

I hope you enjoyed the review!  If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them for me!  I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)

Which version is your favorite so far? ;)


Meritre said...

You were pretty quick with doing the review! Sorry to hear Belle had a problem! If I remember correctly 2013 Belle also had a nose problem but she was lucky and got away without any faults.
All the Rapunzels look lovely but overall I like the first one best. The 2013 and 1014 dolls both have really pretty faces but 2010 has besides also having a lovely face longer hair and her dress has the most details although 2014 dress is a pretty close second. :)
What I really like about your posts is that you try to come up with en explanation even if it is something you do not like about the dolls. (for example: shorter, thinner hair - easyer for kids)

beastsbelle said...

Lol, yeah, every once in a while I'm actually on top of things. ;)

2013 Belle's box was also smooshed up against her face, but her nose wasn't completely flat like this one. ;) Unfortunately, having scrunched boxes in my Disney Store orders has become more and more common. :( I try not to make a big deal out of it as long as the doll is not damaged since I usually debox my dolls. I knew this time it would really bug me, though.

I love seeing all of the Rapunzels together and being able to pick and choose what I like best from each. I enjoyed hearing your thoughts on them. :)

I try to look for something positive in every doll I review, even if there are things about the doll I don't care for as much. I try to remember that behind each doll is a person who put time and effort into the design. Even so, I've had instances where people have been upset by my reviews, so since then I've tried even harder to be honest but kind. This is one of the reasons I came up with my new rating system, so I could point out a doll or toy's good points in some areas even if (in my humble opinion) they didn't do so well in others.

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Ampy said...

Awesome review!
I like the grading system.
If I had to pick a favorite among those rapunzels,2010 wins hands down. But the new rapunzel(2014) has her charm.Shes 2nd place in the most accurate rapunzel doll face(first place for me is the really rare disney on ice rapunzel).

Speaking of new dolls,I have news!
There are pictures around flickr showing the sleeping beauty deluxe doll collection.

There are also new singing dolls,with lots of accesories!(It has merida,aurora,tiana,and rapunzel)

(rapunzel closeup)

Frozen will also have new doll offerings such as:
New DAC Anna and Elsa:

And another frozen 2-pack,with elsa in her ice dress and anna with the dress she was wearing in the ending

BlackKitty said...

I think the new doll is my favourite. I never held a Disney doll in my life so my opinion is based entirely on your photos. They probably used less hair to make it more natural (less poofy) and less top-heavy (My Catty Noir, which I dubbed "Monster Rapunzel", topples over ALL the time). I like the warmer colour too, the others appear to have green hair on my monitor. If you were to put the best head (the one you like) and the best dress (the first) together, the result would be pretty close to the last doll. And it has clicky knees. You didn't mention which ones have those awkward knees, but it's nice that this one doesn't. Overall, I think the design is a step forward. I hope your Belle issue is solved soon. It's great to see you back with reviews!

Anonymous said...

Although I love all the Rapunzel dolls, 2012 is the one that I prefer. :)

Skelita Calaveras said...

My personal favorite is 2012. ;-}

beastsbelle said...

Thanks for all of the updates, Ampy. :) I saw a lot of these on Facebook yesterday. I really love Singing Rapunzel and the new Frozen dolls. :) I'm hoping I can add at least Singing Rapunzel and the Ice Skating Frozen dolls to my collection. I'm not sure about the DAC dolls. Although they're adorable, I don't know that I'd have the room for them! ;)

Hi BlackKitty! :) Your ideas about the thinner hair make sense. Even though it's not as practical, I just love the longer, thicker hair.

I do agree that the newer warmer hair tone is nicer. Sorry that the other Rapunzels look green-haired on your computer! :}

I didn't think to mention which dolls have the articulated legs. 2012 Rapunzel is the only one. Mine is particularly bad. One leg wasn't attached properly at the hip, so she can't sit very well. I would love to see the Disney Store do a design more like the LIV dolls. That would be so fun!

My new Belle is on her way, so hopefully I can have my Belle post up by next week. :)

Anonymous and Skelita, it's fun hearing everyone's favorites. :) Sounds like you two have similar tastes! :)

Addy and Emma said...

I love the 2010 and the 2014 version! Okay I might start another blog what do you think? but I'll still post on my drawing blog as much as I can, if do start another blog it'll be about ever after high. What do you think?

Michele said...

Really enjoyed the review, loved seeing all the dolls side by side. I agree about the 2010 dress- the best and closest version. I really like the shape of 2014 face and her eyebrows, but I like the lighter green eyes (with out the really light green liner) and the freckles really are to dark. It is a shame they have made her hair thinner. Rapunzel really needs all that hair, but she is still a beauty. Can't wait to see Belle's review. I would not have been happy with having her nose like that, so happy they are sending you a new one!

beastsbelle said...

Addy and Emma, starting another blog could be really fun, especially if you have varied interests. Try to take it slow and not get too overwhelmed. Keeping up with more than one blog can be a little crazy, but if you want to try it, go for it! ;)

Michele, so glad you enjoyed the review. :) I'm bummed about the hair myself. Hopefully future Rapunzel dolls will have fuller heads of hair like the earlier versions.

I'm very thankful for the Disney Store's customer service. Whenever I've had a problem, they've always been wonderful in their response. :) I can't wait to see my new Belle and do the review, too! :)

Amber Spaulding said...

I love all the Rapunzels, but 2012 is my favorite one. Her hair is amazing and even though I don't like her glitter filled dress, I do like it a lot. I also like her because '12 is the only one with articulated legs, I really wanna rebody her but I don't think my liv Sophia would color match her.

beastsbelle said...

Amber, I'm pretty sure I used a LIV Katie to rebody my original 2010 Rapunzel doll, and the skin was a pretty good match. Of course, the skin tones between 2010 and 2012 Rapunzels are slightly different. Still, you might just keep it in mind if you find a cheap thrift store Katie somewhere. ;)

Mark Patraw said...

I like the 2012 and 2013 heads the best, and the 2010 dress is the nicest, although I agree that this year's dress is very close in (the floral print on the skirt really makes a difference). Disney had definitely been working to improve the quality of their dolls lately, which is great to see.

Did Rapunzel even have prominent freckles in the Tangled film? I've seen it twice, although it's been months since the last time, but I seem to recall her complexion being pretty clear in the movie.

It'd be great if Disney gave their Princess dolls ball-jointed ankles and knees (their dresses would hide the knee joints anyway), similar to how the arms are done. While the seamless look is more realistic, I've never liked internal ratchet knees, due to how limited the mobility is. I also think it'd be cool if somebody made an 11-12" Rapunzel doll with a ridiculous amount of hair (like literally three feet or more) someday . . . I'm sure that much hair would be cost prohibitive (even real wigs usually aren't that long), but it'd sure look amazing.

Your mini Mother Gothel doll must be in heaven with all that magical Rapunzel hair around her--she'll never age a second!

Cylinders/cones are trickier to work with than rectangular boxes, but I'd bet a little tower to display all your Rapunzel dolls in, similar to your American Girl rooms, would look neat. Just an idea for an art project, if you ever feel so inclined.

beastsbelle said...

Hi Mark! Great to hear from you, as always. :)

I agree, it's wonderful that the Disney Store is continuing to work to improve their doll lines. It's always fun to see what they come up with next. :)

Rapunzel did have freckles in the film, but they were very light and only noticeable when you got a really close look at her face. That's my one big bone to pick with the Disney Store...they've always done her freckles too dark. They've gotten better in recent years, but this year they were really dark again. Usually I use some acetone-free nail polish remover to either lighten them or remove them completely...I just haven't gotten around to it yet with a few of my dolls. ;)

I would love to see them do a good ball-joint system for the legs. The only reason I'm okay with the "clicky-knee" legs is because their previous design on their articulated legs is pretty awful. I really hope they work on that, though, because a doll with lots of posing options is always more preferable than one with limited posability for me.

Lol, yeah, I'm pretty sure mini Mother Gothel is quite content where she is. And there are enough big Rapunzels around her that she shouldn't be able to abuse her power. ;)

A tower display would be really cool! At the moment, I'm trying to condense things a bit so I can keep the space in my room, but if I'm ever in a position where I want to change that, I'll definitely keep your idea in mind! :)

PottercatxD said...

I like 2014 the best. I was just ripped off from amazon[more about that on my blog] so maybe I will order her when I get my money back. The worst thing was it was a ag outfit!!

Alexander Smith said...

Her face is getting closer to the movie version, now if only they would lose that huge face, but she's perfect for a retouch for me :D, the 2010 version can't be found anymore, but this looks like a great alternative

Anonymous said...

Hi, when are you going to do a post on 2014 Belle? I've been anxiously awaiting that! :)

beastsbelle said...

Hi Anonymous! Sorry to keep you waiting. :} My 2014 Belle review should be up by the end of the week! I'm in the middle of finishing up a Zelf and Lalaloopsy post that should be up within the next few hours, then I'll tackle the Belle post. Yikes, I'm so behind!! :}

Anonymous said...

Haha, that's quite alright, beastbelle. We all get a little behind sometimes! Very excited for the up incoming post!

beastsbelle said...

Thanks! :)

Jones said...

My 2014 version is standing on her toes, probably because the manufacturer used standard legs (the ones they use for every doll of that size) - there are holes in both her heels, which are there to keep high heeled shoes in position, I guess. I think they should have fixed that for a doll without shoes...
My favourite version is the 2010 first edition with Pascal and hair that is longer than she is tall - definitely not a doll to play with, but a great collector´s item.

beastsbelle said...

Jones, my 2014 doll is the same. It would be kind of nice if they'd make the Rapunzel dolls flat-footed, wouldn't it? ;)

I agree, the 2010 doll is lovely, and one of my favorites for her movie accuracy and amazing hair. You're right, though...definitely not the best play doll with all that crazy hair!! ;)

tofanpw said...

My rapunzel doll finally arrived after 3 months, apparently that's what usually happens to packages from US disney store. I was advised to buy from EU disney store next time. Now for her pros and cons.

1. Perfect dress(your picture didn't show how glittery her skirt though).
2. Thick and strongly rooted hair.

1. There are faint smudges, one on her cheek near her right ear, another on the left side of her face near her nose.
2. Her hair is frizzy and the material seems to be of low quality.

I actually like the smudges on her face, she looked like someone who just ran around in the woods. Her hair is a nightmare to maintain, I'll probably ignore it until she have to be rerooted.

beastsbelle said...

Hi tofanpw! Wow, three months is a long time to wait! I hope an order from the EU Disney Store will be a little quicker for you next time. :)

Sorry you didn't notice the glitter in the skirt pictures. I see it pretty clearly, but I do have a pretty big screen. I also don't know that I actually mentioned the glitter in the text this time. :{ Sorry about that.

Yes, the hair is pretty crazy on pretty much any Rapunzel doll. That's why I tend to keep them in fancy braids all the time. ;) It makes it easy to keep the hair under control.

Thanks for stopping by.

tofanpw said...

Her glittery skirt is only noticeable in movement, like a disco ball. Anyway, I washed and conditioned her hair, but failed at straightening it, her hair can't be combed when wet. Being wet also revealed how thin her hair actually is, and the quality and technique used to root her hair is really bad, the inside of her head has a mass of tangled, frizzy hair, the other end of the plastic tie I cut to free her head from the box can't be taken out because of that.

beastsbelle said...

Yeah, I was really disappointed in her hair rooting this time around. The thickness of the hair is half what it was for the other dolls. :( Sorry you weren't able to straighten her hair like you wanted.

DisneyWorksGirl said...

Hi beastsbelle! OMG i really love your blog never grow up and belles bulletins
oh and Tess and Maggie's blog! Anyway my favorite Rapunzel doll is the 2010 one. It is really like the movie character.
(Though the 2011 one is gorgeous) so sorry for this long comment!
Love 10 year old DisneyWorksGirl

beastsbelle said...

Thanks, DisneyWorksGirl! Nice to meet you. :)

Gib said...

Hi Beastsbelle!
Thank you for this amazing blog! With the arrival of the 2015 Rapunzel, I got interested in the details of the previous ones, and I stumbled upon your article that occurred to be EXACTLY what I was looking for!!
Will you complete your comparative article with the new generation Rapunzel? I would be delighted! I will probably not see it in person before a while, living in Europe!
Anyway, I'll keep an eye on your great blog ^^
Cheers from France :)

beastsbelle said...

Hi Gib! Nice to meet you! :)

I placed an order today for the 2015 Rapunzel, Belle, Beast, and Eugene dolls, so I will be reviewing them (and comparing them to the previous versions) as soon as they arrive. :)

I always love hearing from readers around the world. Thanks so much for stopping by and saying hello! :D

Gib said...

Ah, awesome! I'll be as impatient to read your article as you must be to receive your package :p
Thanks for your reply, I'll be back ^^

beastsbelle said...

You're welcome, Gib. :) My package is supposed to be here tomorrow!! Waiting anxiously... ;)

Katrine said...

I recently came across this doll at a goodwill and i got her for 10 cents on sale. Her hair was a mess and she didn't come with her clothes but I managed to tame her hair enough to braid it and found her some clothes and I'm so glad to have her. She's gorgeous! Great review!