ShePop: Is the new 'Dora the Explorer' doll too sexy?

Doraexplorer_lSeems moms across the Internet got all whipped up about a new tween Dora the Explorer doll, mostly based on a "teaser silhouette" that Nickelodeon and Mattel released early to generate excitement about the new product. Oops: While there was plenty of excitement, it was more of the "How dare they turn our beloved-if-squeaky heroine into a little hussy?" variety. Yes, from the mysterious outline, the little gal known for her bowl cut and talking backpack appeared to have sexed up quite considerably between the ages of six-ish and 10-ish, with tons of long, flowing hair and a micromini.

But now the kids’ channel and toy company have assuaged the masses with a fully detailed rendering of the doll (pictured), complete with tunic and leggings. Turns out that’s a long shirt as opposed to a short dress. Phew. (Her hair really is fabulous, but a girl can’t help what she’s got, can she?) Furthermore, the corporate powers reassure us that our gal (who connects to a computer USB port for interactive games) "will expand into the world of solving mysteries that have overt and relatable pro-social themes — like volunteerism, water conservation, or planting trees to help the environment." If she’s really going to do all that, we can’t help but like this idea. (In fact, we’re kind-of reevaluating what it is we do with our free time….) And here’s to hoping she stays away from those tarty Bratz dolls — you know that’s really what had all these moms so jumpy.

What do you think of the new Dora the Explorer? Is she too grown up or a perfectly good role model? And more importantly: Do you like her leggings?


Comments (449 total) Add your comment
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  • Joy

    She looks very cute. Maybe she could turn into the new Nancy Drew! ;)

  • NikkiB

    She is adorable. I have a 10 year old and she would fit right into that group.

  • Allie Beth

    As in the words of Blair, “leggings are not pants!”

  • Kim

    Are you kidding me! She looks fine! Have you seen the Hussy Brat Dolls!? Dora looks like a regular 10 year old, maybe to make moms feel better they should let her be missing teeth or something….

  • Ruth Kenney

    Why fix what ain’t broke? Elmo has managed to remain popular to the age group he was created to relate to. Let the ‘tweens’ have their own role model and let the original Dora relate to the toddler set she was created for.

    • Con’s dad

      Why wait till it is broke and a joke, look at Simpsons, my god Bart’s been 10 for the past 23 years. Come on now the world is changing every day don’t be scared.

      • rhysha

        noooo duah dummby

  • Shamrock

    She looks more realistic than cartoonish.

  • Holly

    There is nothing wrong with the way she looks and my 3 year old likes her too. I dont know why people are getting all worked up about her but I do agree with if it aint broke dont fix it. The todlers love her how she is why change it

  • Janine

    When I first read something on this yesterday, there was no picture and I imagined it looking much worse (like a Bratz doll). I think this is just fine.

  • Joyce

    Why do people always try to improve on perfection? If Dora were to go preteen, then you’d develop another character to take her age slot…right? Why not just keep Dora, and come up with “someone” else to fill the “Boots” of the preteen you see such a need for. I think that would be easier, than asking tots to accept a totally new character.

  • Michelle

    This is ridiculous! Too sexy? I swear people have nothing better to do than to find stuff to complain about. It’s not like they made her over into Jessica Rabbit! Look at the Bratz dolls, or let’s talk about Tattoo Barbie, cuz THAT’S a good role model for children. The new older Dora is just fine and anyone who says otherwise has nothing better to do with themselves.

  • coco

    She looks very cute. My friends have tween girls and they dress them just like new-Dora and they always look adorable.
    If you don’t like, don’t buy it! What a concept!

  • Mana

    My beef with the new Dora was never the “sexiness” of the silhouette, but the idea that she would now be into fashion and shopping instead of exploring. Heaven forbid we teach tween girls that they can be more than fashionistas and shopaholics. If we were getting, say Teen Diego, Im sure he’d still be having adventures and learning things, not hanging out at the mall. But because Dora’s a girl character, she must fit into the “girl mold” and can’t be smart, can’t be adventurous (outside of the mall), can’t get her clothes dirty. THAT’S the problem with new Dora, not how short he clothes are. (As for the “pro-volunteerism” that networks claim: we’ll see if Dora does more planting trees than shopping. I’m doubting it.)

  • Winona

    I think it’s fine – sure as heck a lot better than the Bratz prostitute dolls.

  • jcarla

    I read an article that original Dora will stay the same and continue in her adventures. This is for kids like my niece who out grew Dora, but parents still want that type of role model. So far tween Dora will only be in doll form.

  • ej

    She looks great..I think it is a great idea why not let our children follow her along as they age with her..hopefully they keep the environmental themes

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