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50th Anniversay Francie

50th Anniversary Francie doll
Barbie Fan Club Exclusive
by Mattel
(literally taken fresh out of the box)

I rarely ever take box photos before I rip a doll out of its package. For Francie, I'd do it. She's always been kinda special to me that way. Opening her box has been just as much a celebration as the doll itself. I had been particularly excited about the 50th Anniversary Francie because the promo shots looked closest to the original than the previous reproduction dolls. I wasn't disappointed.


Let's nitpick (and I say that while rubbing my hands together excitedly and with a smile). 

Would I have chosen a pink box to put her in? Probably not. I'd never associated Francie with pink like her older cousin Barbie. I'd always thought she was more into yellows, lime greens and oranges...the citrusy stuff. But it's just a box so meh. It might interest never-remove-from-box collectors to know that she did come with a dust cover for boxed-in purposes. Again, to a collector like me who has no ounce of self-control when it comes to keeping dolls in their original boxed state, I say, 'meh'.

If you know your Francie, a prom type of outfit as such in this 50th doll is not typical of this gal. When it came to Francie, you could tell it's Mattel, not because she was swell, but because she was groovy. Nothing in this outfit is groovy. No blindingly bright colors or geometric patterns. No mini skirts, tall boots, hoop earrings, fringed hems, etc. etc. Instead, she's a goody-goody Miss Teen Beauty. It looks and feels like a very well-made attire though. And for her 50th year, I kinda get it. She's half a century old. It's a big milestone so why not do it with class. Groovy Francie had always been more a great mix of sweet yet flashy than coy and classy. And I like her that way but I don't mind this other side of Francie one bit. Plus, I think the original version of this outfit is supposed to be rare.

From left to right:
50th Anniversary Francie doll and 1966/68 Straight Leg Francie

Now the face...oh, joy, that pretty face! I do like the face of the 50th doll. This is the first time she's been reproduced without the rooted lashes and with the straight legs. I love the no-lashes Francie just as much as the one with them so it's not a deal breaker to me. 

Someone finally got the hint that to capture the essence of Francie isn't just about her funky wear, it's also the doll's face. To a Francie enthusiast like I, that means ensuring that her doe-shaped eyes were indeed that. This one sure has fact a little too doe-ish if I dare say. Again, I don't mind. I don't expect a reproduction to be a carbon copy of the original. It would be nice but probably not gonna happen. The way her lips are shaped also very much resembles the 1966 version. That made me happy!

The shape of the face on the new reproduction doll is where I found this Francie really missed the mark. This is consistent with the past reproductions. The original Francie does have a rounder shaped face, say, compared to Barbie, but the reproduction takes that to another level of 'round'. There's too much cheeks where cheeks are concerned. And her eyebrows are a tad bit higher than I like...but that's just me being an ass about it. She's still super cute! And her skin tone is nice. It's not overly pink-ish like the 30th Anniversary Francie doll.

The hair flip on the new doll is also not much of a flip but rather a curl as opposed to what the original Francie has. After googling Francie images, I came into the conclusion that the hair color varies in different shades of brown on the brunette versions. I don't know if that's just her age, lighting during the photo shoot, or my computer screen, affecting the color or what. So I really can't comment on it other than how nice, properly thick, and brown the new one is. It's a very rich shade of brown and I like it.  

It's important to note that even though 50th Anniversary Francie had the plastic head wrap, typical to how the originals came in their box, her hair has gel. I had to comb my doll's hair a bit to fluff it out after I took a few pics of her right out of the box.

Overall, I approve this reproduction doll. She exudes the Francie that I know and love. Best reproduction of her yet! (...I expect the next one to have less puffy cheeks...please with sugar on top... ^___^)