A lot of Barbie collectors are excited about the new Barbie Basics line of 12 dolls. I've seen plenty of doll-related blogs and bulletin boards teeming with excitement over them.
Each doll has a different face mold and little black dress. It's a neat concept, and designer Bill Greening did a good job with their vampy styling.
So why do they fail to excite me? It took me awhile to figure it out, but I think it comes down to this: I am forever and always, first and foremost a fan of the Superstar face mold.
The Barbie Basics face molds from left to right in the picture are:
Where's my Superstar?
Mattel introduced the Superstar face mold in the late seventies with Superstar Barbie. It features an open-mouth smile, and Mattel used the mold heavily throughout the 80s and 90s. (Here's a nice collection of Superstar mold pictures. You can see some of the different ways it has been painted and styled.)
As a child of the 80s, it's the mold I grew up with, the one used on most of the dolls that I played with as a kid.
And now, as an adult, it's the face mold I naturally gravitate towards as a collector.
A close second-favorite face mold for me is the Mackie, which is included among the Barbie Basics dolls. She is my favorite out of the 12.
Mattel introduced the Mackie mold, which features a closed mouth, with Bob Mackie's Neptune Fantasy Barbie in the early 90s. Many of the dolls in my collection and those I played with in the 90s had this face mold. (Check out some examples of the Mackie mold here.)
I know I always will choose dolls with these face molds over others. They just appeal to me. It's a combination of nostalgia and liking what's most familiar.
Do other collectors experience the same thing? Do you typically go for one face over the others?
Happy Birthday, Barbie!
13 hours ago