The Sixth Day of Christmas – Usagi Dress-Up Doll
On the sixth day of (Sailor Moon) Christmas, we got ourselves an interesting little piece of history that I desperately wish I was able to find in its complete original packaging (or at least with all its parts), but is a neat little toy all the same. This is a part of the “Sailor Fashion” shokugan (食玩; toy-and-candy)1 series that was released by Bandai throughout the life of the Sailor Moon series, though the dolls that it came with, their design, and their construction changed with each season. The one we’re showing off today is from the Sailor Moon S series and is a rubber variety, coming with hard plastic snap-on dresses. Unlike previous years, though, you can actually see which toy you’re getting before you buy!
As you can see here, the set originally came with the doll (I’d assume dressed in her Sailor uniform), one dress to show off, and then included the rest of her accessories behind the case. We can probably assume that the original product was wrapped in plastic, but alas, the one I purchased had see much better days. Unfortunately, we can’t worry sit around and about these things, and the show must go on! So what is this toy actually like?
Here you can get a better idea of hoe the toy is intended to be played with – you can clip various clothes onto Usagi (or any other member of the Sailor Team you happened to buy) and dress them up in one of three outfits: her Sailor Soldier “costume,” a “long dress,” or a “two-piece dress.” All of the outfits are made out of hard plastic and the doll itself is made of PVC (or poly-vinyl chloride, as the Japanese language so cheerfully tells children).
The toy itself isn’t much to write home about, probably, but it has a certain Polly Pocket2 charm to it and is reminiscent of those hard pvc dolls with limited poseability, though for some reason the clip-on clothing reminds me of a completely different (and mostly unknown) toy line from the early 1990s, Snailiens.3 Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find any other toys from this series belonging to the Sailor Moon S run, so I can’t say whether or not their clothes could be swapped from one character to another, but judging by the previous runs in the series and the generic pose of her arms and body, it seems safe to say that the clothes could be shared among several characters, allowing you to mix-and-match styles.
Overall, I’m sure this must have been an interesting toy and since it seems like it was definitely on the cheaper side (from what I could find – and judging by prices of shokugan toys nowadays – likely in the 500 yen range), I’m sure it would make a semi-decent toy to keep young kids entertained after a run to the supermarket, or as a hold-over between your birthday and Christmas. Besides, it also came with candy as an added bonus! So that’s definitely a plus.
- Shokugan is a contraction of the two kanji compounds, 食品玩具 (shokuhin-omocha) and read as shokugan. The first character means “food” and the second “toy,” basically meaning that it’s a toy which comes with a snack – or the other way around, depending on your outlook. See Shokugan (Wikipedia) ↩
- See Polly Pocket (Wikipedia) ↩
- See Snailiens (Virtual Toychest) ↩