The dolls I wrote about here still haven't shown up where I live, but I went to Toys 'R' Us last week and they had a whole bunch of new dolls, all of which have one thing in common: The 1998 Generation Girl™ head. (For the record, as far as I can tell it's the enlarged version from 2004 [a.k.a. "Big Head Syndrome"]. It isn't the smaller "collector" head size.)

Here are some pictures:

Toys "R" Us Exclusive "Fashion Fever™"-type Giftset
I Can Be™ Preschool Teacher
I Can Be™ Newborn Baby Doctor (name changed from "Nursery Doctor")
Barbie® and the Three Musketeers™ Corinne®

I wish I could think the 1998 head thing is just temporary until the new head appears, but the Style Salon™ doll makes me think otherwise....

Style Salon™ Barbie®
The Style Salon™ sample shown at Toy Fair

The picture on the left shows the version displayed at Toy Fair. (The larger original image is here - thanks again BarbieZania!) If you compare this to the picture above of the doll I saw at Toys "R" Us, you'll notice that several things were changed. Most importantly, the pictures in the circles, which originally showed a doll with the new head, were replaced with pictures of a doll with the 1998 head.

When I saw this, a little part of my died inside. (That's only a slight exaggeration.) If the old head were just temporary, you wouldn't really expect the box to have been changed like this.

For the record, I like the 1998 head, and most of the dolls I saw were very pretty (the ones whose eyes weren't painted on their foreheads ). However, I like the current 2005 head a lot more, so I'm very disappointed to see it go. (It's still being used for Teresa®, but I wish Teresa could have gotten a new head instead.)

And, even though the the new head might not have been "perfect" (I think it's very pretty though ), at least it was something new and interesting.

Since it's the 50th anniversary, I was hoping any changes that would be made would be moving forward - not backward. If the old head thing turns out to be permanent, this would be the first time in 50 years that Barbie will have "reverted" to a previous version after a major makeover.

Here are some side-by-side pictures showing prototype dolls with the new head next to the production versions with the old one:

Barbie® as Corinne® - Production vs. Prototype
Salon Style™ Barbie® - Production vs. Prototype

You can also click here to see a big picture of the prototype Corinne doll's face.

Unfortunately, it's starting to look like we may only ever get to see this new head in pictures after all.

You may also be interested in these entries (or not - it's your call):
   • Barbie®'s New Logo Isn't New
   • Ken® Gets a Makeover
   • Head Games: Barbie®'s Old Head Replaces her New One
   • Tyler Wentworth® Gets her Old Head Back
Doll Diary 20 June 2009