Nobody has ever quite been sure
how the Jem offshoots were dealt with in the United Kingdom.
Superstar dolls were not sold here, and
there's no evidence to suggest that they ever were to be sold here, either.
So what then, of the loose bits and bobs? And also, what of those second
year parts? Year 2 was still in/just ending production when the plug was
pulled in the UK.
So what happened?
My theory is this.
The quantity of Mexican Hybrid dolls does suggest a link between the end
of the line here and the production in Mexico. If we take as read the fact
that Mexican dolls supplemented the UK line after the end of First Edition
dolls in America, then it seems logical that when the line ended altogether,
bits of Mexican doll and bits of leftover second year doll might get put
together to use up leftover stock. My hybrid Aja, after all, has her second
edition earrings firmly stamped into her head, but a mexican body - and she's
not the only one of her kind. There is also evidence to suggest that some
of the Mexican dolls were haphazardly put together, and not always well matched
with the right parts. So how much attention did the factory REALLY pay to
what they were putting together?
Is it possible...at ALL possible...that
at some point, the bits and pieces left over from the Mexican and ordinary
Jem lines met up either somewhere in Asia or in Mexico, and were thrown together
into dolls in much the same kind of way as the Superstar dolls were for America?
My feeling is that it's not impossible. But the evidence
for this is still very much in the theoretical stages - so bear with me.
This is what we have so far - if anyone can add anything to this, I'd be
more than grateful to hear it!
This doll (top and left) is my weird Kimber doll got from a friend. She is
native to the UK, and she has a Mexican head (unstamped) and a normal body.
So why an absence of utter excitement about this?
Well, it's simple. Kimber's head and body have not always been the best
of friends. In fact, her head has definitely been reaffixed to her body. So
it's possible that she is simply a kiddyhood put together job of some kind.
That would not surprise me and would make complete sense.
However, there is one tiny catch to this theory. Kimber has a perfectly
severed head ball - one half of it is inside her head, and the other half
rattling around inside of her body. This was when the question started to
be raised - how common is it to find a totally severed head ball, let alone
one where the matching parts are in head and body of the doll? This is the
key piece of evidence which suggests that Kimber here might be more than simply
a put together job a la raggy dolls ;)
If Kimber was all the evidence there was, the whole theory would remain extremely
tenuous. But, recently I stumbled across something that adds a little bit
of credence to the mismatched "reverse hybrid" theory...
This doll came to me from a seller in London. He had no other Jem dolls,
nor did he have any further knowledge of her - not even her name. Honestly,
I think he just wanted rid of her :S Pizzazz is what, ideally, we really
needed Kimber to be. Her head is blatantly Mexican - for a comparison with
my Pure Mexican Pizzazz, click here - yet her body is a normal Chinese body,
clearly stamped © 1985 Hasbro Inc and then beneath it, China. The interesting
thing for me is that the China is printed in a neat little oval, which has
been seen on other second year issue dolls (though I haven't found one in
my collection with it yet, and Kimber above does not have it.)
But the oval might yet be significant, because we already know that Second
Year heads were put on Mexican bodies and sold in Mexican boxes. Even with
earrings, in the case of Aja and Shana at the very least. So if this is so,
what happened to the spare Mexican heads and ordinary bodies? All second
year dolls appear to have been Made in China.
Whatever her origin, one thing is in no doubt. Much as I wrestle with it,
Pizzazz's head will not come off. It really appears that she was sold this
way - however she was sold.
And that itself is the big question. How many of these "reverse hybrids"
are there out there? And presuming there are more than a handful, were they
sold in Mexican boxes, or in baggies with no Hasbro association like the
Superstar dolls were? The bodies used are not superstar/ballwrist bodies,
and it's long been wondered WHAT happened to the surplus of other body styles.
Maybe this is the answer - although why so few have yet come to light still
remains a mystery. Honestly, this is something which is still a very new
line of Jem investigation, and until we find one in some kind of package,
it's impossible to 100% authenticate Pizzazz. (Kimber is probably not authenticateable
either, though Pizzazz's existance makes it possible that this is what she
There are many more questions than answers - so at this stage, any and all
help or information on this subject is welcome. We know from other strange
Mexican phenomena, that Mexicana is already
an indistinct collecting science. Is this just another branch of that decidedly
WEIRD Jem tree?