Seems 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?