Sunday, September 8, 2013

Catty Noir: Redressed!

"Here I am! Rock you like a hair-icane!"
This is going to be about half review and half (bad) photo gallery, so I'll warn you upfront.

I got Catty a couple of weeks ago when the local Wal-Mart put her out early. She was only out on the shelf for 24 hours (I went back the next day to check), so either they pulled her after I bought her, or she was bought up completely in that time. She's supposed to be released on Friday the 13th, so we'll see if she suddenly re-appears then.

"I feel... sparkly. Like millions of fairies were wrung out over me in a cloud of glitter."

I tossed her nightmareish pink performance dress in the MH clothes box immediately after opening her, because I really don't care for the thing. It's sparkly, it's appropriate for her in her on-stage persona, and it's incredibly striking against her black skin/fur(?)... but it's like getting whalloped with a magenta-based glitterbomb every time you see it. So you won't be seeing Catty in it during this. I put Catrine in it though, just to show what it looks like. (The magenta looks good on her, the silver does not, really.)

Catty comes with a saddle stand, which is great if you want to pose her standing in shoes that are exactly the right height for it. In thinner-soled shoes, she floats a bit (as you can see with Catrine, above). In "float mode" your doll has more limited options for posing, as she has to be balanced in order to stay upright. With Catty's massive hair, that can get a little tricky.

Careful... caaaaareful...
It can be managed, though.

Let's talk about Catty's hair for a moment. It's just... something close to terrible. It really is. The color is beautiful. It's a deep magenta with streaks of pink in it. The length is breathtaking and dramatic.

Catty Noir IS Esmeralda in Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame!"

And the texture is super-thin and prone to flying all over. She sheds like a real cat when you brush her, and short of boil-straightening, there's not a lot you can do with it. I took her hair down out of the stock ponytail to look at her rooting, and it's rather thin up around and behind her ears, imo. There's so much of it that there's not a lot you can do with it. Braided, it makes a massive thick rope that's almost wider than Catty is at the shoulders.

Singing a sweet, soulful love ballad?

For all that, though, she is absolutely stunning and has tons of personality. She seems to really love costume changes, and it takes very little work to make her look stunning. Besides her pink nightmare dress and saddle stand, she comes with a metallic pink microphone, clear magenta earrings (hoops in one ear, "13" in the other), and four bracelets. Three in metallic pink (one with a bell, seen on her left wrist above) and the others cuffs with spikey grommets. One matching in silver. This is way too many bracelets, so I've put most of them away.
Finally, someone who kind of pulls off this ugly, ugly dress...
Catty is the first doll to come out with the new "split" style shoes, where the shoe is two halves made of hard plastic that you snap together on the doll's foot. While I applaud Mattel for coming up with a solution to the "ugly slits up the back of the shoe" problem, I wonder if they realize that they have created the "Can only find one and a half shoes of this pair" problem. Arguably, this is worse than the "Can only find 1/2 of the shoes in this pair problem. She also comes with a diary, where she talks about wanting to quit the popstar scene and be a regular teenager. One really cute detail I didn't seem to get a photo of is her autograph on the doll box. This is a tremendously adorable detail!
"Talk to the claw, cuz the ears ain't listening!"
So what is the bottom line on Catty, for me? I think she's a gorgeous doll with very unfortunate hair that is a lot of trouble to keep looking decent. I'm seriously considering getting mine rerooted in something easier to manage. I wouldn't pay over retail for her, since the downer that is her hair would probably make you feel very frustrated with your purchase very fast. She's good for a $22 doll, but she'd be disappointing as a $30 doll, I think.

"No one will know that it's me! It's the perfect disguise!"
She is a ton of fun to dress up, though. Especially in incognito mode. Catty, you have a metric ton of magenta hair, you're not fooling anyone with this.

A word of caution: Check out the face of your doll. Lots of Catty's have been noticed to have misaligned face prints. Mine is a little off, and has a little paint rub, but I kind of like the look it gives her. Sort of friendly-clueless.

"Hope you can sing, rookie."
If you're gonna wear that dress, you're gonna have to learn to sing, Catrine. Them's the rules.

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