Bratz: A Retrospective (Part 1: Bratz World)

The Bratz are, perhaps, the instrumental catalyst in propelling me to where I am today. The spunky, cartoon-like dolls with big, pouty lips and a provacative fashion flair known to have enraged soccer moms everywhere had captured my attention and have taken me along a journey (from childhood through puberty to young adulthood) that I’ve yet to stop! Even though there have been times where I have tried to move on, I’m still drawn back to “the Girls with a Passion for Fashion!” (if anything it’s the magnetic pull of childhood nostalgia).
In order to celebrate the brand, I’ll be doing a week-long retrospective covering everything from their road to success to the packaging design to the movie deals to their downfall to the road to recovery.

Let’s get started, shall we?

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[Bratz X-Press It! Sasha, Meygan, Yasmin, Jade, & Cloe]

       The Bratz girls came on the scene in 2001 and were like unlike anything in the fashion doll market like ever before. Quirky features such as their petite, smaller scale bodies in contrast to their big, cartoon heads and their snap-on feet was a new formula that challenged the norm that had been set decades back in 1959 by the iconic Barbie doll.

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[Bratz Tokyo-a-Go-Go Cloe, Sasha, Fianna, & Jade]

       Unlike previous competitors pitted to take down Barbie, the Bratz proved formidable and were here to stay. Cloe, Yasmin, Sasha, and Jade had managed to interest the tween and teen market that had left behind their childhood Barbie in attempts to rebel and grow up.I mean, with lines like Flashback Fever, Tokyo-a-Go-Go, Midnight Dance, and Princess, the Bratz were paving the way for success with brand, new exciting visions and an edgy style that was distinctly Bratz.

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[Bratz Boyz Twiinz Zack & Alek; Movie Bryce; Play Sportz Cameron]

       In fact, the Bratz brand was doing so well that the brand expanded. What’s a world without Bratz Boyz? The male counterparts to the Bratz were just as fashion-forward and had this suave yet also boyish charm to their appearance. Cameron, Dylon, Eitan, Koby, and Cade proved to be just as stylish in lines like Funk Out!, Wildlife Safari, Punkz, and Sun-Kissed Summer.

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[Bratz Wicked Twiinz Ciara & Diona]

       Something had to be in the water in the fictional city of Stilesville because the Bratz had set after set of new Twiinz as friends practically each year. The first, Roxxi & Phoebe, were introduced in 2005 and since then, it’s been a signature Bratz thing in the fashion doll market.

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[Bratz Babyz Triiipletz Valentina, Oriana, & Sierna]

       “Before they were Bratz, they were Bratz Babyz!” An odd little spin-off concept, if I do say so myself, yet somehow it worked in their own weird little way? From 2004 onwards, fans were taken back in time to witness the ideation of Yasmin, Cloe, Jade, Sasha, and other Bratz friends as adorable, spunky little toddlers.

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[Bratz Kidz Jade, Yasmin, Sasha, & Cloe]

       As much of their target audience were tween girls, I thought it was a brilliant part on MGA Entertainment, the makers of Bratz, to introduce Bratz Kidz in 2007! To bridge the gap from Babyz to a Bratz, the Kidz were released and definitely embodied an age-appropriate but still stylish vision of the Bratz in their kid years.

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[Bratz Lil’ Angelz Cloe, Yasmin, Dana, & Sasha]

       Thought the Bratz couldn’t get any younger? You thought wrong! The Bratz Lil’ Angelz were introduced in…2008 or so, I believe? I didn’t follow that extension too closely, but now I’m sort of wishing I had at least one! There’s always eBay…

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[Bratz World Yasmin & mom Portia]

       So how else can the world of Bratz expand? The creative minds at MGA had an answer and introduced the Bratz’s family in 2008. While Yasmin only introduced us to her mom Portia, Cloe revealed she had four other members to her family. There was her big sister, Sonya; her mother, Polita; and her twin baby siblings, Issa and Colin. That’s a big family you got there, Cloe!

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[Bratzillaz Cloetta Spelletta, Sashabella Paws, Yasmina Clairvoya, Meygana Broomstix, & Jade J’adore]

       Well then, that’s it. There’s no other way the Bratz world can get any bigger right? Not quite. See, there’s a thing called fantasy. Or alternate universes. However you perceive it, it’s tangible fact that the Bratzillaz, branded as the “wicked cousins of the Bratz” came about in 2012. I’m not gonna lie, this spin-off seemed like it was created just to compete with the popularity of then newcomer Monster High. The names of the characters were just a little too…ridiculous. “Sashabella Paws” and “Cloetta Spelletta” are giving me drag queen vibes. If anything, at least in my weird little Bratz canon, the world of the Bratzillaz (which got rebranded as House of Witchez in 2013, oddly enough) was some sort of story one of the Bratz girls had dreamed up as part of a creative writing series.

There you have it. A brief little look into the rather expansive world of the Bratz. In the next segment, I’ll be taking a look at some battles the Bratz brand has dealt with in its history.

Have a natty day!

Natty

 

 

 

 

 

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