Monday, February 26, 2018

Dazzle (Mattel)



Dazzle
Mattel
1981

Dazzle was a set of action figures produced by Mattel in 1981 to compete with Kenner's Glamour Gals line. It featured 4 inch figures with five points of articulation, cloth / denim clothing and brushable (apparently not a real word) hair. In essence, it was Barbie in a smaller scale - with several more friends.

Each figure came carded on its own custom card back featuring a color illustration of the character. Coupled with its bright yellow package and metallic silver header the packages all but screamed at little girls (and boys) as they walked past them in toy isles.

In total there were only twelve characters released over the lines two series - Ten of which were girls, and two of which were boys. It's worth noting that while each girl featured long strands of hair which could be combed or styled, the boys hair was molded plastic.

Dazzle*Glossy*Spangle

Glimmer*Rhinestone*Glissen

Crystal*Diamond*1st Series Card Back

The majority of the figures in the line were released during the first wave, with only four new figures being produced for the second.

Glint*Starla*Ace

Shimmer*2nd Series Card Back

In an effort to sell more toys, but limit cost production, Mattel re-issued a few of the first series figures, and (at least) one second series figure with bathing suits (in addition to their original outfit). These versions are far more difficult to find than the originals. We were able to track down four figures, but there could very well be more.

What we do like about these iterations is the effort which Mattel put into the packaging. Rather than just slap the figures on their original card backs, the company instead created all new ones now illustrating both the original artwork for the character standing next to themselves in their bathing suit.

Dazzle*Diamond

Glimmer*Shimmer

Those familiar with the annual Christmas catalogs from retailers such as Sears, JC Penny and Montgomery Ward (to name a few) will recognize the packaging style to the left. To make things more shipper friendly to customers, these retailers often times received multi-packaged figures in white (or brown) cardboard boxes. This was not only a way to sell more than one figure at a time, but also made it so a shipping label could simply be adhered to the box, and be on its way without additional boxing.

We know of one such particular mailer box for Dazzle which featured three figures; Crystal, Glossy and Glissen. We are uncertain if any other figure packs exist as this was the only one we were able to find / confirm.

Mattel also produced individual outfit packs which could be incorporated with any of the figures. In total there were six of them, each with their own theme. Of course, now that we type this, technically any of the outfits above could be swapped out with the various figures - With the exception of the boys as their clothing was molded plastic. Dang, the boys got shafted left and right in this line, didn't they?

Much like the figures, these were released in both series one and two - three outfits in each series. Unfortunately we put them in alphabetical order, and not by series - Oops. We've denoted which series each one came in next to its name.

Dressy Dreams (2nd series)*Glowing Glamour (1st series)
Golden Gear (2nd series)*Jazzy Jeans (1st series)

Pretty Party (2nd series)*Sizzling Sun (1st series)

Unlike Kenner's Glamour Gals which got bookoo  playsets and accessories (such as the giant Ocean Queen Cruise Ship), Mattel limited the Dazzle line to one animal - A horse named Blaze, and one playset, Dazzle City. Both of which were released in series one.

Dazzle

Dazzle City

It's pretty rare to find such a great quality line of action figures geared towards young girls. This in turn makes Dazzle quite a unique and fun series. We dare say these figures should be enjoyed by boys and girls alike. Not only are they a fun series in and of themselves, but they actually incorporate rather well into Kenner's Glamour Gals line (should you have both) making for one massive lineup of female based action figures. This is a line that deserves some serious consideration from collectors of action figures who are looking for that unique conversation piece on their shelves.

As of this write up, while some figures are a little more difficult than others to find, most of them are fairly reasonably priced at about $15.00 to $40.00 each. That's not a bad price at all for a toy line pushing 35+ years old.

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