Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Monster High: school can be a nightmare



I was in Target (one of the least frightening places I know) and came across a few of the dolls from Monster High. Dolls such as these make me hope I have a little girl someday. There are plenty of scary toys for boys, but not enough for girls.

The "fashion dolls" were released in 2010 by Mattel. You may know that company for its other successful fashion doll, Barbie. The dolls are purported to be marketed to tween girls and ... wait. What the hell is a "tween"? Not to offend any of the the 12-year-old girls reading this (of which I am sure there are none) but you are either a pre-teen or a teen. There is no in be"tween."

Monster High has its own web universe where those interested can interact with the teen children of classic monsters such as Clawdeen Wolf, Draculaura, Ghoulia Yelps and Abby Bominable. The character design, complete with a variety of outfits, pets and relationships, is a good reflection of what I think high school might be like in the new age of social media.

Part of the point of Monster High (one of the greater points of horror, in general), is to make the outsiders feel cool. Everyone in Monster High is weird, which makes everyone normal. It'd be nice if real high school (and younger) students could grasp that concept.

Let me repeat that: everyone is weird in their own special way which makes everyone normal. If you are still in school and reading this, try to remember that and pass it on to your friends. And if you are thinking instead of some weird kid in one of your classes, why don't you try and make a new friend instead of teasing him or her? It'll be good for both of you.

From the few webisodes of "Monster High" that I watched before writing this, it looks like the students deal with the same problems that have plagued teens throughout time: fitting in, gossip, body image (great stuff on how Clawdeen Wolf has to shave twice a day), young love, and sibling rivalry. There are two seasons-worth of three-minute shows on Monster High's YouTube channel. If you have a teen girl, give them a shot. Enjoy them together.

It would make the transition into watching the movies about the students' parents easier.

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