I have been online a lot lately, trying to figure out who will retire this coming year. It has become something of a game for me each year to figure out who will be retired and (if I have wanted her for a bit) save up and buy her before AG even announces it.
I think it is possible that Kit, Caroline, Addy, Rebecca, and Josefina might be on their way out. Not all at once. But probably one of them will be retired, either winter or summer. That is typically when they retire dolls.
I’m going to show my reasons for Kit, Josefina, and Caroline today. The rest will come in the next week or two.
– She normally sells really well, and now she is selling really badly. They’ve been featuring her like nuts (BeForever spotlight and all) which bodes ill for her.
– There is a lot of pressure on AG to not make as many blond hair, blue eyed dolls. (Which I agree with – they should work on getting more diversity in the mix.)
– The only dolls that are left that have been around for longer than Kit has are Josefina and Addy, and both are non-Caucasian.
– Ebay is saturated with hundreds of decent condition Kit dolls. Some people are buying used Kit dolls instead of buying them straight from AG.
– People have been dissatisfied with her new BeForever outfits more than pretty much any of the other dolls.
– She has been around for quite a while.
– She was the only one who did not get her BeForever makeover yet. When Molly was about to be retired, she had a bunch of new stuff released right before.
– There have been rumors spread by AGP employees and Personal Shoppers.
– Some people think that she isn’t “American” because she lived in a time and place that was owned by Mexico at that point.
– She has been called the 18″ Barbie because of her pink dress, blond hair, and blue eyes.
– Her hair is harder to care for.
– There is a lot of pressure on AG to not make as many blond hair, blue eyed dolls.
– She has also had low sales.
Right now I think it most likely that Kit will be retired out of those three. I know a lot of people think it will be Josefina, but I think Kit and Caroline should be considered candidates, too.
A few things that might help each doll not be retired:
– Her hair is super easy to care for, which means lots of moms buy her for their girls.
– Her stories are about a time that lots of the target age’s grandparents grew up in (my grandpa included.)
– She is very tomboyish, which lots of people can relate to. However, lots of tomboys I know are 0% interested in dolls. For that matter, I’m a complete and utter girly-girl. (Glitter!)
– After AG has been dropping hints about Josefina’s possible retirement this summer, they’ve gotten tons of backlash, especially as it is right after Ivy and Cecile retired. Some people have been feeling that AG is a bit biased, since the last 9 dolls that have been released in a row are all Caucasian, and most have blue eyes.
– Erm….she is new. From 2012. But that didn’t stop them from retiring MG and Cecile, and they had been out for three years.
I really think it will be Kit (out of these, anyways), honestly. I might be wrong, but I bet it will be Kit or Josefina. I hope it is Caroline.
Kit is a really strong character in the books and some of the historical characters seem a bit conceited and bratty, so I hope that they keep her. Plus, the woman reporter in the 1920’s/30’s plot is becoming a trend in books (e.x.- Hattie Big Sky and Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson.) She has also been a big seller in the past, so AG might not retire her in the hopes that she will become really popular again. I think that a lot of girls in the target age range (target age range is 8-12 for the 18″.) really like her, Claire and I included. The thing that pushed me to put her on my wishlist was when I found out that she had the dark blue eyes (which only three AG dolls have ever had.) Her character is really fun.
Josefina wants to be a healer, (1824 equivalent of a more natural doctor) so I think it is partially important for her to keep her because of that. Seeing as how basically none of them are anything very STEM-focused (not that they really knew much about how the human body worked in 1824) it is nice to see that in a girl’s toy line. I mean, we have a reporter, an actress, a girl’s rights activist (or two? Would Samantha count as one? Or more of an equality activist?), and a sailor. (I don’t know what Addy and Kaya would really grow up to be.) A girl’s rights activist is a very good cause, but I’m glad that there is someone focused on science. Another one of the things I really like about her is that she is one of the non-Caucasian dolls in the BeForever line.
I’m not super fond of Caroline. Releasing a second doll with blond hair and blue eyes in the BeForever line was pretty risky in my opinion. I don’t really like her character (she is one of the ones who sounds really bratty in bits of her books) and a lot of her newer clothes are either really cheap looking, aren’t historically accurate, or just not at all appealing. The only things I would even want from her collection is her Travel Outfit, her Nightgown, and her Winter Coat.
I think they’re focusing less and less on the company’s values and more and more on marketing and money. I think that it might hurt their sales in the long run, (Pride cometh before a fall 😉 ) and so I hope they make the right decision in who to retire this year. I think that out of all of the BeForever dolls, no matter whether I think they might be retiring or not, I think that they should retire Caroline. I don’t feel like her books are contributing a lot to the line overall, and we have a blond hair, blue-eyed, Caucasian, classic mold doll already, who has a great character.