Once Upon a Zombie is a doll line that I initially wrote off as a Monster High spin off when I first heard of it. The dolls were sold in stores like Target for a short time, but unfortunately for me I didn’t get into collecting the dolls until they were out of production and had become more scarce. Upon coming to the OUAZ Facebook page, I was delighted to find that the dolls would eventually be coming back into production to be sold online. It took months and months of waiting, but the dolls are now in stock! Along with the original six: Rapunzel, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Belle, Cinderella and the Little Mermaid, a new doll, Zombie Alice, has been created, celebrating the 150th anniversary of the creation of Alice in Wonderland. I ordered her and Belle at once to add to my collection. I was delighted with them as soon as they arrived, and immediately pulled out my camera for a photo shoot.
The Once Upon a Zombie dolls are similar to Monster High dolls in their supernatural theme and skinny bodies, and similar to Ever After High in being fairy tale themed yet deviant from the original stories. However, I wouldn’t want to give the impression that these dolls are simply imitations of the brands Mattel makes. Once Upon a Zombie is an excellent doll line that will appeal to Monster High and Ever After High collectors alike, but brings a charm and moxie all its own. There is a graceful beauty and maturity to these dolls that I haven’t seen reflected in any other brand.
These are dolls that would appeal to children and collectors alike. The dolls are sturdy, and their removable hands make it easy to change their clothes. Their hair is high quality, and the dolls will still look gorgeous with their hair tousled and wild from hours of play. Their outfits and accessories are so pretty that most collectors will want to keep them as is. They come in beautiful packaging with detailed illustrations, so those who like to keep their toys in-box will be glad to do so. Also, each zombie princess comes with her own collector’s stand and brush, an important detail for collectors that Mattel has been skimping on lately.
One of the most striking features of the dolls is their eyes. Most fashion dolls have their eyes painted on, but OUAZ dolls have beautiful inset eyes that come in a variety of colors and shades. This elevates the quality of the dolls and gives them a deeper level of realism than many other dolls on the market today. They also possess rooted eyelashes on top of their painted ones, which draws even more attention to their charming faces.
Once Upon a Zombie really hit the mark in designing zombie fashion dolls. Each doll has her own unique scars and stitches, with marks on the arms, waist, legs and face. These marks don’t detract from the dolls’ makeup; in fact they add beauty to them. All the dolls come barefoot, as zombies have no need of shoes, and their slim feet are sculpted with tiny toes. No detail is lacking. These girls are definitely zombies, but they have the elegance of princesses. It’s exactly what a little girl who wants to be edgy but still feel like a princess would be looking for. It’s the sort of fantastical fun that many grownups search for as well.
Looking at the OUAZ dolls on a deeper level, I believe they embody the human experience quite well. They show that even when we’re down, even when we feel messed up or broken, we’re still beautiful and should carry ourselves with dignity. Thus even though this may seem like a horror themed doll line, Once Upon a Zombie reminds us that true beauty isn’t only skin deep, but rather shines forth from within.
To buy the dolls (and the first book!) for yourself, go to onceuponazombie.com.
To read a review of Once Upon a Zombie’s first book, The Color of Fear, click here: