Mattel’s Monster High dolls have become the latest toys to be optioned into a tie-in film, with The O.C. and Gossip Girl creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage at the helm. Have you seen these dolls? They are insane. There are like a thousand of them, and they all have horror-pun names like “Venus McFlyTrap” and “Frankie Stein.” Each doll has a bio on Mattel’s website, where they each confess to their Freaky Flaw. (“Since I can’t see my reflection, I have to leave the house not knowing if my clothes and makeup are just right.”) They don't look like people, but they don’t really look like monsters, either. In fact, they kind of look like Bratz dolls but in a wider color scheme, with little skulls and hearts and pink bats everywhere.
The dolls are mostly girls, but there are a few guy dolls as well—presumably for Monster High Prom purposes. They’re also monsters because their parents are monsters: They are the (privileged, beautiful) children of genies, werecats, and sea monsters. So it’s hardly surprising that Schwartz and Savage, the chroniclers of the soapy, sexy lives of ultra-elite teens, want to take a crack at the franchise. All the dolls are designed to have a backstory of monster-specific but also “normal” teen concerns, like makeup, dating, pets, and, uh, statements like this: “My tail gets in the way sometimes and it’s really hard to find haunt couture fashions that accomodate it.” The characters are a horrifying blend of sanitized elements of scary stories and the worst impulses of modern consumerism—but wait, you can also create your own “fangtastic” avatar!
No word yet on whether or not the film will be live-action or animated, but Schwartz and Savage specialize in real teens being metaphorical monsters, so probably expect a bunch of teenagers with blue and green skin prancing around in a theatre near you. In the meantime, please explain to us how it’s possible that these dolls are things that exist.