To celebrate the 20th anniversary since the initial release of the Bratz doll line, the fashion doll manufacturers have come out with a new set of dolls being sold all across the USA and internationally. The dolls were discontinued back in 2010, then reemerged in 2014 after some rebranding but weren’t nearly as popular as they once were.
Through the years Bratz have faced many issues, with parents complaining about how the dolls were too “sexy” and competing with other brands such as Barbie. However, this comeback is making headlines and although Bratz have faced several issues in the past, these 20th anniversary dolls have been welcomed with open arms by the community. When the dolls first emerged in 2001 they were some of the only dolls to actually represent different ethnic groups. The four dolls went by the names Cloe, Sasha, Yasmin and Jade, these dolls became so popular because of their looks and because young girls were able to see themselves in the dolls.
The Bratz brand has been able to stay alive through brand deals and entering different markets, such as the makeup industry. Earlier this year Revolution announced the collaboration with Bratz, then was launched on the 18th of June. Four palettes were released, each one representing a member of the famous quartet. Bratz were also able to stay popular through their TV shows, movies and web series (which is still available on Youtube). Even after the brand ended, those who loved the dolls kept them alive through word of mouth. Bratz have also entered the clothing market by working with brands such as NO NAME, Bershka and Puma.
Meet The Girls
Cloe forms part of the original quartet and was designed by Carter Bryant. She was originally going to be named Zoe and has appeared in all Bratz movies and series.
She is known as ‘Angel’ by her friends and plays the role of trend setter. She is into her photography and filming, as well as participating in several sports. Cloe is lively and charismatic, and she is nothing but kind and caring.
This blue eyed angel is played by Olivia Hack in the new series Talking Bratz.
Sasha, also known as bunny boo was originally named Hallidae. Like the other core girls she was designed by Carter Bryant. When it comes to what role she played in the series and movies, many said she played the role of leader whilst others seem to think she was more of a secondary character.
She is more into her music, and studied French and Political Science. Like Cloe she has appeared in every movie and series.
Sasha has been played by Tia Mowry-Hardict in her past roles but is now going to be played by Julyza Commodore in Talking Bratz.
Known as Pretty Princess & Yaz, but originally named Lupe, like the other core girls she was designed by Bryant.
Yasmin is known to be the Latin bohemian princess when it comes to her style. Like Cloe she is a fashionista but is much more shy. She is a very talented writer, and likes to focus on her school work. She is protective of her friends and likes to help out whenever she can.
In Talking Bratz, Yasmin is played by Valeria Rodriguez.
Jade is another important member of the group, unlike the other girls Jade is actually mixed-race. Known as Kool Kat by her friends, she is half Eastern Asian and half white. When Bryant first drew up her character, he also saw her as a Jade.
She is depicted as music-lover like Yasmin, but more into the classical works. In high school she studied classical violin and children’s psychology. Her style also stands out like the other girls, she is know to be stylish but unique.
She is now played by Ratana Vox in the new Talking Bratz series.
As a way to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Bratz, producers decided to start a mini web series on the Bratz TikTok page. Since the release of the two episodes, Bratz fans have gone wild and have been hyping up the brand. Especially when fans heard Cloe in the first episode, who is being played by her original voice actress Olivia Hack.
The show has also introduced new Bratz character Felicia played by Jaimi Grey, who has played the perfect role as host. When the Bratz original series and web series came out in 2005, the girls were 16. The series came to an end in 2008, and it has been announced that in this new web series the girls are 18, the Talking Bratz episodes are part of a senior year project. Yasmin took to Instagram to announce the news:
“Hey Bratz Pack— Pretty Princess here! Me and the girls have been working on a super rockin’ senior project that we can’t wait to share with you! Can you guess what it is?! 📹📺 Keep your eyes on our Tik Tok this week( @bratz ) to find out!! 👄 #bratz”@Bratz on Instagram
Bratz: Why They’re Significant
Growing up in the early 00s’ and being a person of colour, seeing all things Barbie was overwhelming. Although, yes, Barbies were pretty and the ‘perfect’ little girls doll, I could never understand why I didn’t look much like her. I am a mixed-race woman who still has a hard time with my ethnic identity. However, when I got my first Bratz doll, I realised I didn’t have to be fair with blue eyes and blonde hair. I no longer felt insecure about my features, which I think a lot of girls felt growing up during the reign of Barbie.
Many issues came about when Bratz were in stores, the dolls were cast as too ‘sexy’, too ‘foxy’. In reality they weren’t, because when those ‘curvy’, sexy features were put on a Barbie doll there weren’t as many issues. Barbie was cast as the beautiful doll even when the doll followed the same trends that Bratz did. Although the initial Carter Bryant designs of the dolls were mainly stereotypes, Bratz found a way around that. They decided to recast some of Bryants ideas, which is how the legendary group came about. Cloe, Sasha, Yasmin and Jade all come from different ethnic groups but all get along based on their love for fashion.
Yasmin was my first and most favourite doll, this is probably because she is the Latinx Bratz doll. The thing most people have to appreciate is that beyond skin tones, and feature all the girls have, they also have big and unique personalities. Which anyone can identity with, the fact that you could also see these girls on your TV screen gave them 3 dimensions. Now-a-days the fashion doll industry has tapped into social representation, which makes Bratz less unique than before. However, to those who went through their Bratz phase, they can appreciate this 20th anniversary and use it to reminisce.
What You Need To Check out
Written by Karla Louise Hallett