Sunday, September 13, 2009

ken doll comparison ---a glimpse into the madness of the real doll nerd

from left to right:
"ted" tammy's brother, by ideal / "bob" miss suzette's boyfriend, by uneeda /
"ken" painted hair 'shortie' by mattel /"ken" painted hair /"ken" flocked hair /"ken" porcelain /
"ken" silkstone / "ken" malibu / "ken" one modern circle / "pierre" fashion royalty, by integrity

so, here's how this comparison chart came about:
a couple of weeks ago, i was surfing ebay. i won the porcelain ken (wearing his tuxedo, nrfb) for $28.00 and the silkstone ken (the 'fashion insider' gift set, nrfb) for $15.00. i was excited for such fantastic deals! i was also excited to compare the sizes of these dolls, as i always keep an eye out for dolls that can share their clothes with supercooldollhouse's fashion royalty boys. the pierre doll pictured belongs to supercooldollhouse. i'll show more interest in the fashion royalty dolls when integrity figures out how to get the color of the head, hands, and feet to match the rest of the doll's body. [although i do love the misaki that supercooldollhouse gifted me]

when the porcelain ken arrived, he went through the same 'alien abduction' procedure as do all dolls belonging to the real doll nerd: full strip-down and inspection. this way, the doll's quality can be assessed; outfit and accessories are assessed separately. porcelain ken's body sculpt is very nice. his paperwork explains that he is not a true reproduction of the original ken, but an updated sculpt; i like it. the porcelain has a nice weight and feel. the details of the sculpt are displayed well by the porcelain. i'm very happy my new porcelain ken (his partner, porcelain 'vintage' barbie in her wedding gown is on her way) if i had to pick one thing i would change, i would give him a poseable head --his head and torso are one piece, rather than two separate pieces which would be preferable.

silkstone ken actually arrived the same day as porcelain ken. the sculpt is the same as porcelain ken except for the right arm and the articulation at the neck. the details of the sculpt have been mostly lost in the silkstone. i'm also not happy with the neck; at the seam, the neck angles inward rather than continuing straight as it should. just a funny side note (funny-sad, not funny-ha-ha) both 'premium' dolls come with plastic display stands --oh mattel, tsk tsk.

then the o.c.d. kicked in and i felt the need to do a big 'police line-up' comparison. so the early ken dolls were dug out of their respective hiding spots. during this game of dolly 'hide-n-seek' i came across ted and bob. neither are "kens" or even mattel-made for that matter, but since one could argue they were ken-knock-offs, i included them. poor bob, what an odd-looking guy. whereas mattel debated over the size of ken's "bump," bob's unique leg joints don't even leave him room for a va-jay-jay.
malibu ken is included because his sculpt represents most ken dolls since his first makeover back in the 60's. yes, some have twist-waists and different arms, etc, but the torso has remained the same. is mattel still using it? the 'one modern circle' ken is included to show a better execution of the vintage repro head-sculpt than is seen on the silkstone ken. pierre is included to show how he towers over all the other guys.

so even though i didn't find any guys to share clothing with the fashion royalty dudes, i'm glad i added the porcelain and silkstone kens to my collection. silkstone ken has several silkstone barbies to hang with (if he wants to) and a porcelain barbie is on the way....... hhmmm ....... looks like a barbie comparison line-up could be in store for the real doll nerd.


  1. BRAVO!!!! very comprehensive..... Thanks!!!

  2. I have always liked posts that compare dolls. It helps newbies like me to decide which doll to get or avoid. Thanks.

    I'll look forward to more posts like this. :)

  3. Thanks for this comparison article. I, too, love doll comparison photos.

    Poor Bob! Poor Ted! I think the Uneeda female doll - forgot her name, always considered her Barbie's afflicted cousin aka whacked by the UUUUGGGLLLYYYY stick, had the same peculiar lower torso design. Shudder.

    My Kens are jumping around and high-fiving each other. They are ecstatic that they have "boy bumps." Well, most of them LOL

    On the Keeping Ken News page, there is information and photos about current Ken bodies. Some Kens are posers and others are anti-posers. (Well, anti-posers isn't an "official" designation, but I find it an apt description. What do you call a Ken whose knees don't bend?)

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  6. I loved your post :) I am getting my first silkstone Ken. He's coming naked so I'll have to make clothes for him. Can Silkstones share clothes and shoes with regular Kens? I have a silkstone Barbie and she shares clothes but I had to buy Barbi Basics shoes for her. I'm hoping Silkstone Ken can wear regular Ken shoes.
    Oh and just a side note--the font color is almost the same color on Mobile so we'd have to view your blog on full site in order to read it.

  7. Add me to the fans of comparison posts and photos. It helps put things in perspective, especially when you don't own all of the dolls.