Okay, I have something I'm dying to post about, but I made myself promise that I would finally post about the Anastasia dolls I got on eBay awhile back before I posted ANY MORE new stuff. Ready? Let's take a look at Anya/Anastasia and Dmitri, circa 1997!
As you probably know, Fox's Anastasia was one of their many attempts to "out-Disney" the competition, and it's just about as close as they ever came. There were probably a song or two in excess, and comparing the real Romanovs to the film would just give you a headache with all the inaccuracies, but as a fictionalized representation of an adapted story that's being marketed as a "fairy tale", they did quite alright with it.
I don't remember there being ANY merchandise for it on the shelves at the local stores, but that's probably due to a combination of it being a very small town, and early senility making me forget that this stuff was there. At any rate, I've admired the dolls off and on in the secondhand market for a long time, and finally managed to score a lot that included dolls of Anya/Anastasia and Dmitri, plus an extra doll's clothing set for a really good, couldn't-believe-it price on eBay awhile back.
(Note: Anya/Ana's tiara was included, but I couldn't get it to stay on her head for love nor money.)
A quick look at Google or eBay for the boxed version of this doll reveals that she also would originally have come with a cassette tape of the "waltz sequence" song, "Once Upon a December". I think this is actually the ONLY thing that the eBay lot I got didn't include.
The dress is composed of two layers of skirt, the topmost of which had a clear elastic to loop over the doll's arm to aid in holding it up as in the film. The bodice has a square neck and the sleeves are made of pearly shimmery material. The blue sash at the waist is sewn into a nice bow at the back, which is nice because you don't have to worry about tying and untying it to change the doll's clothing. As you can see, there is a little bit of staining, possibly from the other dress I got, on the lower back seam of the ballgown.
Anya/Anastasia also includes a "pearl" bracelet, ring, and earrings, plus a hair bow that matches her sash which is on an elastic tie. Her shoes are small white flats, which fit very, VERY tightly on her feet. Her arms have a swivel in the elbows, and she has a torso joint in addition to her bend/click knees. I was surprised to see that she had this extra articulation. Weirdly enough, Anya looks graceful with very little effort. Her skintone is oddly pink, but it does prevent her from being completely washed out by the yellow gown. I wish the texture of her hair was nicer. It feels frizzy and a little brittle, but that could be due to age.
Meanwhile, let's check out Dmitri.
Although Dmitri's doll and outfit were disappointing, I have to say that I'm impressed with the Anastasia dolls over all. The Anya/Anastasia dolls have gorgeous, well-made clothing and the dolls themselves are capable of some very expressive posing. I'm glad I got this lot, and rather sad that I wasn't able to grab any of the merch for this movie when it came out. Maybe eBay will bring another bargain lot my way, though?