|Come See About Melody!|
Logical Side: Neth, that can't be the opening to your blog post, you have to be articulate and poised and--
Me: *Shoves Logic Side into a wall and beelines for the front door of AG* you're not my momma you can't tell me what to do! I've been itching for since 2015 when AG made a one line Facebook post about a black historical for next year and then her books came out and I've been hyped since last December or longer so if I want the entire opening to be nothing but me screaming my head off like an idiot and singing every early Motown song that ever came out, then I can do that--
Logic Side: ...Neth, there's more that came out than Melody. Also you have to bitch about things for a short point.
Me: ...Damn you, logic side. *kicks dirt*
Well, you heard my Logic Side. As much as I'd like my entire opening to be me screaming so loud about DeeDee that they hear me in Hawaii before the cut, I gotta talk about stuff a little properly. So. On the 25th of August in the Year of our Documentation Twenty-Sixteen, the culmination of books and designs and items and Black history and work came together finally to manifest and release as the cutest American Girl historical released in the last four years,1 Melody "DeeDee" Ellison. Sorry Ellie, I love you so much--but you knew DeeDee was going to bump you when she got here and you understood that. We major? We major.
It's not like y'all didn't expect this of me, I've been hype for DeeDee ever since they showed her first book cover. I snapped up all her books as they came out, on February I declared my entire wallet dead in lieu of seeing her and Edith realized she was queer, and as soon as I could preorder her I did that without regrets.2 And on Friday the 26th, my close AG friend and I went to the store midday to go to Melody's Block Party so we could get tiny doll shirts, poke tiny doll things, talk shit about people there and back cause that's hella fun, actually run into people from IG out of nowhere who recognized us, and buy dolly stuffs as soon as possible. I might have had DeeDee in the gang since the 14th, but I still had to go squeal and dance over her stuff. Melody means a million things to me, as a child of black children who grew up in the 1960s, and who represents me and my history. When AG launched, the grandparents were of the World War II generation3 and about ten when there were victory gardens and rationing and Damn War. But those kids grew up, several had kids in the 60s, and that's the new throwback for grandparents.
Why didn't I write about things sooner, even though I was there Friday midday? Saturday I was exhausted--I'm an ambivert, so sometimes social interaction can be draining for people like me. So I slept until the evening and then pissed around on the internet, making sure all the articles were on the AG Wiki. On Sunday I went out on errands, and Monday I had to go to the dentist because gotta keep my teeth their prettiest. Once again, some of the new stuff wasn't there and others I missed in the walkthrough, because there were a lot of people there to see about DeeDee and her stuff. (The Lea section was being half abandoned. I may have had the schadenfreude.) So I'll have to use the Wiki images until I can go back and take shots, which might be in a few weeks into September. And I'm taking a break from redoing my braids to get my squeal out, because squeal! Not only was there stuff for DeeDee, but some bursts for other Historicals, the Moddie End of Year Release, and a bit of WellieWishers Stuff.
But with DeeDee already, there's a not at all small contingent of people who are out there that are already being racist shitwads. Y'all out there showing your pale chicken cutlet asses and it hasn't even been a month. Y'all think it's okay to take DeeDee's things for your white stank 60s girls from England, disregard her love of Motown4 and the rich sounds thereof to have her like only the boring ass Beatles because you're scared of the "race" music like it's the 1920s and the loud Jazz might give you accidental melanin and teach you to spice your food, talk shit about her hair being too rough because you fucking can't get over the idea of silky White Hair being better and you have European Dominance Poisoning and are going to try to straighten already straightened hair and end up with tangled rat nests that even braid spray can't save the soul of, and continue to barf all over Instagram and other locations that her clothes aren't part of Black History (Black folk didn't dress 100% like the whitebread faves) so you want to feel justified in slapping them on your stupid wonderbread brats and then try to come at me like I won't hex your dry overcooked chicken-with-cheese-as-seasoning ass.
I hope y'all get booty rash you can't scratch in public that runs all the way up to your shoulders, the elastic in your dolls breaks at the most inopportune time with restringing nowhere near convenient, your fave customs get unexpected ink stains on their face, you get a bad haircut you have to let grow out for six months, you realize your wallet isn't in your purse after you've already made a custom order at Starbucks that the barista didn't wanna make anyways, and a cat leaves dead things in your house you can't find and suck up with the vacuum attachments. Play me if you want. I'm Too Witches to be challenged.5 I will hurt all your little feelings and even some you didn't know you had til I hurt them.
Ahem. *brushes that dirt off her shoulders*
Also two bits of Historical news. First of all, Addy was out of her display box, cut down to almost nothing at the store and a lot of the stuff being online only. I suspect soon they will announce her retirement, which means I need to get one for my mom along with some of her stuff, and her new bed, for me. How do I feel about this? That Addy's had a good long run and that, while it's hella problematic to remove her and only leave one Black Historical again when there's so many white dolls in the historical line that are out and about oh my god Samantha go back in the damn vault already, she is the oldest one out other than Second Release Samantha so it is her turn to go into the Vault and take a break. (Also, maybe now people can stop bitch-barfing in badly written articles that the only black doll is a slave!!1!11!!)
Ah, yes, the Vault. Let's touch on that, because it's come out recently that there's three BeForever books due out in early 2017: A Stand for Independence, Love and Loyalty, and Gunpowder and Tea Cakes. I don't know about y'all but that sounds like Revolutionary Revolutions to me. So is Felicity coming back out? This is a strong hint. They're at least rereleasing her stories, which means I have to buy yet another copy of them. What can I say, I'm a book crazy kid, and I like having AG books of all my faves. I already have four versions of Sam's books.
Me: *looks at Logic side* Have I said enough proper talk now? Are you pleased?
Logical Side: ...g'won. I can't stop you any longer.
Melody Elizabeth "DeeDee" Ellison of 1960s Detroit: Neth's Wallet Died a Noble Warrior's Death and Gets to Go to Valhalla
|I...might have got every outfit in this case already. Whoops, not even sorry.|
Praise Sweet Yemaya, Mother of the Seas and the African Diaspora, they didn't fuck it up. I'm going to cover all that came with her in the Rewards first, cause hey my pics allowed that.
|I am not Jackie O. I'm Michelle O.6|
Melody comes in a cute as hell green-blue-yellow houndstooth a-line sleeveless dress with bow accents and a cowl neckline, a blue bow headband, white knee socks, and blue patent leather slip on shoes. And white panties like Ellie's. Sinple but hella fashionable. Still, this is a dress suitable for school more than church, because you didn't go into church sleeveless unless you wanted to get the disapproving clucks of every black woman in the church. To add on to the set, you have a felt hat with another bow, a little purse cause you gotta be carrying your pocketbook with your stuff in it that perfectly matches your shoes, cat eye sunglasses so that Melody can throw all the shade and give everyone the looks through them, and an accurate '63 March in Detroit pin that unfortunately does not come with an actual pin because the fear of your child learning that sharp things are sharp remains so you're left to clip it on her clothes awkwardly7 And hat tip?8 Her had is not a pillbox hat. Pillbox hats don't have brims. That's one of the defining features of a pillbox hat. Small, round, no brim. This? Is a Bretonne hat. Education! Love it. And of course, if you want your girl to dress like DeeDee, there's the Blue Bow Top and Pleated Plaid Skort. Which I missed pics of so next time.
Melody's Dog, Bo: Y'all know how I feel about AG pets. Most aren't worth the cost. I don't even have "real" Penny, though I have real Patriot, and the only reason I have "real" Grace is because she came in a eBay purchase with Kit's entire Scooter outfit. That being said? I like this little puppu. He's named after the famous dancer black dancer Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. and, while he has embroidered eyes--clearly the way of things now--they aren't enraging me. I wish the leash wasn't tied to his neck like Bonbon, but if it really pissed me off to the point of intolerance I would cut it off and I haven't, so clearly it's not 100% pissing me off. Was he worth the cost? Eh. He is a lot more unique than I could get for Ellie9 or most other AG girls. But his cost is high. He was the part of the bundle I could have gone without but now that he's here he's not going anywhere.
|Making awesome music.|
Melody's Microphone Set: Melody is so about music it's in her name. So a lot of her things are musically inclined, and this is the first I'll cover: a standing old style microphone she can turn away from to breathe,11 a copy of Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing, and a tambourine to shake it don't break it. The mic makes sounds when you push the buttons and can record some audio. I want it, but I have to wait because I went for clothes and something else first. That tambourine is giving me life, though. And the microphone is actual metal, so I could kill a man with it. Truly, what I need in my toy mics.
|I want it I want It I have no space--|
|omg ploink ploink ploink|
IT HAS THREE FULL OCTAVES INCLUDING HALF NOTES. IT HAS FOUR DIFFERENT MODES OF PLAY. I CAN TAP OUT SONGS ON IT WITH MY PITIFUL PLAYING STYLE. AG ACCESSORY OF THE YEAR 2K16 ploink ploink ploink. When the assistant at the AG store told me that it actually had functioning keys I was lost and my choice was made and it jumped into my bag and came HOME. Oh and there's sheet music too that's nice anyways. I'm going to practice playing Part-Time Lover and Heart and Soul and Ode to Joy on it. Piano~
|Block Party! Block Party! Block Party! Oh this the Block Party!13|
Melody's Table and Chairs: For all your outdoor party needs, a card table and folding chairs of
metal, with extra banner. The chairs don't actually fold and neither does the table, but I can live with it. I have memories of these tables at family reunions and watching the old folk play cards in the garage every family get together on the card tables. They look small, but AG furniture always looks slightly out of scale to the dolls. Later get.
Melody's Block Party Set: Melody is holding a party and she got all the goodies: a working bingo set, hot dogs, two pies in springform pans, a ginger float, and ginger ale of a brand that apparently is the fresh goodies in Detroit and the surrounding area. Look I grew up in Texas, I don't know the taste of Vernor's. Is it good? Someone wanna hook me up? I drink ginger ale all the time. This and the table and chairs, if I can swing it, might be a birthday gift if I'm not getting something else.
|Gold Fancy--wait dem shoes.|
Melody's "Christmas" Outfit: You will notice I put Christmas in quotes. This is because fuck you very much for calling it a Christmas outfit. DeeDee doesn't even get it on Christmas. She gets it on New Year's Eve as early birthday present. If you'd called it a holiday dress not only would it be more inclusive, it'd be closer to right. Now instead I have to deal with these dickshits all over the internet clapping like drunk seals that AG "fought the PC police" and just called it Christmas instead of saying "Holiday" because in their eyes inclusiveness and covering everyone's Winter Holiday is for communists and the Irish. Thanks AG. Next time read your own books. Hmph.
The dress is gold brocade with lovely bows, a matching head band, white tights, and--what are those. So we're just doing black shoes now, is that the thing? Just not matching at all? My older sister would snatch me and Fashion Police me for days if she thought for a hot half second I'd pair my nice cream and gold dress with black shoes. This will have to be alleviated. I plan to pair it with some gold shoes once I can get some gold shoes. The black is nice, but it's jarring to the look, especially wth no other black anywhere else in her clothes. Don't get me wrong! I love the shoes, they have the cutest velvet bows. And they're not going anywhere! They'll just be used for something else. That isn't her holiday dress that matches Edith's holiday dress almost.14
|The coat is winter but DeeDee travels in the summer.|
Please ignore everything AG says about Melody being socially conscious and thus choosing faux fur. While yes, the set is faux fur because all animal products are simulated, in the 60s fake fur was just starting to take off and most people would still wear real fur. If her parents are giving her a nice fur hat and coat, they're not giving her no damn faux fur. She's wearing rabbit. This is the same color as the rabbit fur coats my relatives wore and they looked classy and elegant and they weren't cold. Fur is murder? Fine, then it's warm, insulating, natural not made of plastic polymer murder and means using all the parts of the bunny. Mmm.
Melody's Travel Essentials: When DeeDee goes on trips down south with her family checking the Green Book15 all the way for places they can stop and stay the night or get a meal, she's got her little classy round suitcase with toiletries and postcards they picked up along the way. I like it--it's very accurate to the times. But this is probably going to be one of the latter things I get, just because there's a lot more other things I want more than postcards, a suitcase, and a toothbrush first.16 Priorities.
|Blue for bedtimes.|
|Bed times. Blurry pic failure. I'll retake it next time.|
Melody's Bedroom Accessories: I dickered for a time between this and the piano, but the piano won out because ploink ploink music ploink ploink. But this will be next. Less for the sticker posters to stick on the side of the bed (hey guess who has sticker anxiety) and more the radio that actually works and the plushie elephant oh my gods and the copy of The Secret Garden which has the exact cover of the version I have and had read so many times it's madness.
When it comes to DeeDee's collection?--I want it all, I want it all, i want it all and i want it now~
BeForever: Because Neth's Wallet Wasn't Slain Enough
DeeDee got all the things. Neth bought almost all the things. But she also was tempted by Ellie and Josefina, and managed to stay in the budget set for her because she is trying to behave. Having been hit in the face by all of DeeDee's stuff, AG proceeds to bust the other eye by releasing cute stuff for other Historicals that I want. Onward!
|It only looks salmon. What it is is pink. Also wrap dress.|
Maryellen's Refrigerator and Food Set: 50s food is terrible. You can simulate eating tv dinners and having the milkman show up to pump your wife with this fridge, complete with various TV dinner meals, ice tray, non removable eggs, TV trays, gelatin, and casserole because white people sure do love casserole. Is it the right size? No, it's a touch undersized. Is it pink? Yes. ...do I want it? Shut up maybe I do.
|Finally a proper holiday dress!|
|But I wanted the cookies!|
|And now they're here, in '17!|
Maryellen's Holiday Cookie Set: And to go with your soda-juice-rum punch, we've got cookies, like any good girl of the 50s who is being pushed towards domestic life but gets to fight it all. Seattle didn't have it out--and from what I hear none of the other stores did either--so until they do, generic catalog pic. Cookies, Milk, cookie cutters that are the absolute best, an apron straight out of Better Homes and Gardens, and a tray. I'll get this before I get boozy punch. I like every bit of it. Damn my weakness for dolly food.(pic added 1/2/17)
|Bitch better have my money.|
|Oh we're allowing the Jewish Girl to be Jewish again.|
|Josefina! You're getting clothes again!|
|And speaking Spanish too!|
New Outfits: For the child that wants to look like an AG character without getting too hard into the cosplay paint, we've got three new items:
No one else got anything, which is fine cause we're having a DeeDee Party.
Walking in a 'Wishers Winter WonderLand (Also Here's A Tent For Reasons)
Girls you just came out in June and already you're doing add ons. Okay fine. Have your section too. Also, WellieWishers are starting to show up in Toys R Us stores nationwide. Stuff costs a touch more and you won't get rewards points, of course. But if you're far from an AG store or have a 20% off coupon or what have you, it might be a good choice. I'll probably still get stuff at the store.
Winter Friends Skating Outfit: If you'd rather skip the dressy part of winter and go for the sporty, here's your hit: a jacket, pants, headband, mittens, and skates. This is the much cuter of the two WellieWisher sets, and I love ice skating even if I can't do it. I might snap it up.
|Mary-Lee we roll along--|
|Egghead likes her Booky-wook!|
|Puppets and plays.|
Winter Woods Stage Accessories: The first add-on to the Garden Theater Stage, we've got a double sided winter scene, faux props such as trees and a pond, and three animal hand puppets so we can tell the story about how Squirrel Nutkin is a punk ass bitch. They didn't have any that I saw, look though I may. $20 for animal puppets--the only part I'd use--aren't worth it. Also I'd have to burn the snowman. On principle. (Pic added 1/2/17)
Pic added 1/2/17. It was out and it was being crawled in.
Moddie End Of Year Sales Event: All the Holiday Stuff That's Fit to--Is That a Kitchen?
Why wait til October to release new Moddie stuff when you can do it at the end of August and add another month of potential sales for the Giftmas season? Time for accessories and outfits and also--new girls? Yep, new girls. And #41 and #43 are gone bye bye. As is #46, who went missing one day and we're hoping shows back up in either a new form or as the black Girl of the Year we've always wanted and never had.
|The shadows hide that her eyes are blue. Because of course they're blue.|
|Not the Fina!|
|For all your casual holiday needs.|
|AHHHHHH PUT IT BACK WHERE IT CAME FROM.|
|These cookies are for me. Screw Santa.|
Christmas Eve Set: All hail the coming of the Snow Prince with cookies and milk as a offering, and the Poem of Summoning. And the Hat of San-TA. He will bestow upon you a stocking covered in sparklebarf and give you a bracelet. I already have a Santa hat and don't want the rest.
|oh my gods that is a kitchen.|
|Mmm, meat and sauce cakes.|
|DETHSHAKE. And the bad girl sits on the floor, this chair is for good girls.|
Dining Table and Chairs (II): Did you have to name them after the set you just retired, AG? C'mon. Stop that. And I can't buy this, my furniture needs flow towards the BeForever stuff. I'd rather learn to make a set for my moddies or buy off brand.
Waffle Breakfast Set:
*~*~*Hair Stuff: Error! Guess who somehow managed to miss all the hair stuff and taking pictures of it. In my defense, my friend literally came off her lunch break for us to go up to AG and get her back in time for work, so we were pressed for time.. So, um, I'll get a good shot next time of all of it. That's the Hair Salon Scene, the Truly Blue Hairstyling Caddy, the Hairstyle Essentials Set, the Salon Chair and Wrap Set, and the Ready to Style Hair Kit. Watch this space in the next month or so for correction. I'll maybe give it its own post.
Were there bad in the releases? Yes, there were. There's always something I'd like to burn, generally if it's covered in sparklebarf. But also shiny good things, cute stuff for the BeForever Gang, and DEEDEE DEEDEE DEEDEE. DeeDee we've been waiting since Grace came out and we were not disappointed. I love you DeeDee Darling, and so does the AGGiB.
I swear at this rate of wanting and getting, I'm going to hit the AG Rewards' Berry Level by Giftmas, if not before. Money: the fleeting entity between me and doll things.
1 I specifically said four years instead of a cool number like five or ten because, uh, Cécile's right there and she's cute as hell too.
2 On DeeDee's Launch day, several bundles of her and her things released at discounts, and were available until the 29th. The preorder bundle did not have these discounts--the only discount was the standard $5 off for getting a girl with her meet accessories. I wasn't chuffed, though. When I did the math the major benefit of early DeeDee was well, early DeeDee since there was no discount, with a neat box--and I had her over a week before the official release. Also my first task is clothes anyways. When I added in the fact that none of those bundles had free shipping and none come with her Meet accessories--and I love my Historicals with their meet accessories no matter what? None of those appealed to me as much as the one I got, regardless of discounts. The only thing I was meh on was Bo and now I just like him, he's a cute puppy. But I wouldn't, say like one person said, call AG to lament the situation and say they screwed me over. I wasn't screwed. I paid Early Adoption Fees, and this isn't the first time or the last I might pay for something to be one of the early kids (says someone who bought a 3DS before the first price drop).
3 This apples to me. Goose was a little girl in the 1940s. And if I want to take it back my other grandma would have been about five years older than Kit.
4 I told my momma about people who want DeeDee to be a big Beatles fan over the Motown sound. Momma went off. Why in the fresh hell would a little black girl from DETROIT ever go for the Beatles over the Motown? Naw, that's some purebread racist white nonsense trying to remove her blackness from her. When Momma was a kid in Milwaukee, and her and her cousins they had their little money to buy a 45 for a quarter or so and play it on her record player (cause she had one, or they used the one at her Grandma Mellie's house)? They weren't buying no Beatles when they could have "Baby Love" and "Come See About Me" and be "Dancing in the Street." They wasn't even gonna waste their money. She didn't even touch a Beatles record to put it in her collection til she was grown with two kids (and the second one was me so we're talking the 1980s here). Yeah, they would listen to the Beatles. When they were on Ed Sullivan or the TV and the radio and they didn't have a choice. (Black stations maybe got a little bit of time. Hell, my mom was like the first time there was a 24 black music on the radio, her and her folk bout fell out with joy, getting to listen to all the music they wanted without white music as a prelude and only having a few hours in the afternoon.) But if they had a choice? The Motown sound was lit. Her and her cousins and family were not going to Cobo Hall in Detroit all the way around the lakefront spending their gas money to watch no Beatles play. They would drive all that distance around Lake Michigan to see the Motown Review. And when I said "but mother, it's just dolls" in my sarcastic teasing way mocking the fools on IG? She snorted and was like "it's 'just dolls' when folks wanna show they little racist ass, but when black folk wanna be seen and have their music heard then they gotta be acting out trying to talk us and our experiences down." Y'all wonder where I get it from.
5 Take my word on the Too Witches Part. I will explain on request.
6 Michelle Obama was born in 1964 so, uh, it counts.
7 I already know one person that lost it (*sad face*)so you might want to either modify it into an actual pinback or do as I do and put a safety pin in the dress to display it and be really paranoid about it going anywhere the whole time you have it around anything.
9 Seriously, Ellie, if you want Scooter I'm just going to find a fat dachshund plush.
10 If you don't know what a lacefront is, go look it up and learn.
11 Chocolate Rain~ Some stay dry and others feel the pain, Chocolate Rain, a baby born will die before the sin~ (Tay Zonday.)
12 Guess what Neth's saving up for now!
13 You have to sing those words like the cadence of Missy Elliot's "Pep Rally."
14 Seriously, first the green themed meet dress then the gold Holiday dress. Edith and DeeDee were made for each other.
15 Folk just couldn't stay anywhere on the road, especially driving down to fucking Alabama in the 1960s. Shit, there's towns right now that I wouldn't want to be caught in after sunset.
16 Like the microphone.
17 Except Kaya.
18 Several months ago, I got an Ikuzi doll with dark skin, beautiful eyes, and a slamming fluffy fro. The moment I put her in "Julie's" Maxi Dress to see how it looked on a doll with a shoulder plate, she said her name was Aisha (ah-ee-sha) and she was from the 1970s. And so here we are.
19 I will have all kinds of things to say if Felicity does come back out and her shoes have all mysteriously turned into ballet flats.
20 Recycled name from a Bitty Baby outfit. AG Recycled names will be death of me.
21 When some mean little kid broke the keys of my sister's play piano, I took it apart and fixed the keys myself. With glue and a screwdriver. Hell yeah.
22 I got DeeDee with gift cards I've been saving for a year and change, I preordered a Naturally Perfect and Carpatina's Diya back in February and May respectively and my NP is on the way, and I got Jamiya, a Moddie #1 of the bay who needed her hair fixed up bad when I got her.
23 There is this Buzzfeed thing that Black Tumblr was having none of regarding. It involves making chicken food without spices and flavor by mixing a bunch of food badly, using three kinds of chicken products and flavoring nothing, putting too much cheese, and claiming it was tasty. I had a lot to say about that dreck on Tumblr, including how even poor people put spices in their food and defending whiteness leads to blandness and shame. Also at least one fool said that the pepper and onion powder mixed with the rice and broccoli would be lifted by the steam into the chicken and flavor it that way and that's not how chemistry works.