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- This article refers to a line of toys. For the flat, slitted transparent bags used to hold documents, see Punched pocket.
Polly Pocket was a toy line of dolls and accessories. The name comes from the fact that many of the original Polly Pocket dolls came in pocket-size cases. The Fashion Polly dolls sold by Mattel differ significantly from those originally sold by Bluebird Toys. The original Bluebird dolls were less than one inch tall and made of hard plastic. Mattel's versions are two to three inches tall and are composed of a pliable plastic with soft rubberized clothing and fashion accessories.
Polly Pocket was first designed by Chris Wiggs in 1983 for his daughter Joanna. Using a powder compact, he fashioned a small house for the tiny doll. Bluebird Toys of Swindon, England licensed the concept and the first Polly Pocket toys appeared in stores in 1989. Mattel held a distribution arrangement with Bluebird Toys for Polly Pocket items in the early-1990s. In 1998, while production lulled, Bluebird Toys endured several hostile take-over attempts until Mattel finally purchased them later that year.
In 1999, Mattel redesigned Polly Pocket and created a new series of collectible items. The new doll is larger and has a more lifelike appearance than the original dolls. That same year, Mattel also introduced Fashion Polly!, which used the same characters from the new Polly Pocket (Polly, Lea, Shani, Lila, etc.), but they came in the form of 3 3⁄4 inches (9.5 cm) plastic jointed dolls. They gave a new spin on fashion dolls; instead of traditional cloth clothing, Polly Pockets used unique "Polly Stretch" garments, created by Genie Toys, rubbery plastic clothes that could be put on the dolls and removed. There are also some boy dolls (Rick, Steven, etc.) Like Barbie and Bratz dolls, they also star in Polly Pocket movies, books, and sites.
In 2003, Mattel introduced the Polly Pocket "Quik Clik" line. Instead of having rubbery clothes. The dolls had plastic clothes that would click together by magnets. On November 22th 2006, 4.4 million Polly Pocket play sets were recalled by Mattel after children in the United States swallowed loose magnetic parts. Affected toys had been sold around the world for three years prior.
For the 2010 relaunch, Mattel made further changes to the Polly dolls, including increasing feet size, head size and leg size, although the height remains approximately the same. However, fan reactions were mainly mixed, with criticism due to the dolls childish look instead of the tween look of the originals. Mattel hasn't announced anything new as of 2015. It is unknown if the line is taking a hiatus or if they are discontinuing the line completely as no new products have came out as of 2015.
Below are the list of characters who appeared in the Polly Pocket series:
- Polly Pocket - the title character with light tone skin, blonde hair and light blue eyes. She is described to be very confident, cool, friendly, optimistic, adventurous, resourceful, and loyal. She loves having fun, adventures, and, importantly, friends. She has many hobbies, such as roller-skating, water-skiing, snowboarding, shopping, playing music, and singing. Polly has a fun-and-cool fashion style.
- Shani - dark tone skin, dark brown hair and brown eyes. She is described to be intelligent and creative. Shani is a technical genius who loves taking things apart to see how they work, as well as a proficient inventor. She loves gadgets, such as MP3 players and headphones. Shani has an urban fashion style.
- Lea - tan tone skin with freckles, orange hair and light green eyes, and later red hair and blue eyes. She is described to be athletic and giggly. Lea is an athlete who enjoys many sports, like skiing and soccer. She is also curious about something new to her and is an animal lover. Lea's fashion style is girly.
- Lila - pale tone skin, brown hair and light purple eyes, and later strawberry blonde hair and blue eyes. She is described to be sweet and fashionable. Lila is a fashionista who loves to go shopping for the latest styles, trends and accessories. She is also best friends with Crissy, as well as a talented dancer. Lila's fashion style is glam.
- Crissy - olive tone skin, black hair with a magenta streak, and brown eyes. She is described to be stylish and outspoken, and hates it when her looks are messed up. Crissy is an aspiring fashion designer who is always full of many artistic, fashionable ideas and she love to be a rock star. She has many hobbies, such as roller-skating, snowboarding, practicing sports, shopping, singing and playing music. Crissy has a fun-and-cool fashion style and it's artsy.
- Rick - light tone skin, blonde hair and light blue eyes, like Polly, and has a crush on her. He enjoys playing pranks, skateboarding, and likes being his own rock star. Like Crissy, Polly and Shani, he has his own fashion style.
- Electronic Polly Pocket
- Polly Pocket: Super Splash Island
- Polly Pocket: Lunar Eclipse (2003)
- Polly Pocket 2: Cool at the Pocket Plaza (2005)
- PollyWorld (2006)
Just like Monster High and Barbie, Polly Pocket series also won a number of animation for internet primarily to promote the new version of the doll launched in 2010. The first season had a flash animation and other CGI. Early episodes showed the adventures of Polly and her friends together for their pets the Cutants, mixtures of animals with objects. From the second season Cutants are left aside and the series begins to focus only on friends Polly and her adventures for the best day ever. Recently premiered the third season presented a reboot with Polly and her friends in a new design living their adventures in the fictional town Pollyville.
- The Scotsman, 22 November 2006. "Toy recall over magnet hazard". Accessed 8 January 2006.