Thursday, October 12, 2017

Doll-A-Day 2017 #284: Polka Dot Drowsy Two Ways

  Yesterday we saw the original Drowsy,and I mentioned how much I had wanted a Drowsy when I was a kid. Today we're seeing two other versions of Drowsy.

Drowsy was originally produced from 1964 to 1974. She was then brought back in 1984,and again in 1999. By 1999 she had gone from being a pull string operated talking doll, to a battery operated doll. I know that much. But this pair have me confused.

I'm hoping someone who knows more about the history of Drowsy can straighten me out. I've had trouble finding information. (First,I have to apologize for the state of the Drowsy on the right. She was obtained at a yard sale (as was the other one.),and I haven't cleaned her yet.) Ok,here's the thing. Both Drowsy dolls have 'Made in Mexico' on their tags.
Above and below are Dirty Drowsy's tag. No year listed, but it says 'Made in Mexico'.

And here we have the other doll's tag:
It says 1964, but that could just be the original copyright,not the manufacture date. It's like all those 90's Barbie's that say a 60's date on their butts. It's just the copyright on the body type, not the year they were made. (I wish people would learn that...)

From reading the cleaner doll's tag I would say she's obviously older, since Mattel was still using 'shredded clippings' to stuff the dolls, as opposed to the dirty doll's 'polyester fiber'. However, there is something weird about her tag. What is obviously a Drowsy tag is sewn to what's left of a tag sewn into the actual seam of the doll's body,on which can be read the remains of the words...

...Hong Kong. Huh?

So what's the deal with that? Hong Kong,or Mexico?
If I had gotten this doll off Ebay, or from a doll dealer I might have thought somebody was trying to swindle somebody. Maybe trying to pass a newer doll off as old or something? But I got her at a yard sale,or maybe a thrift store. Has anybody else ever come across this?
  So if they were both made in Mexico,what's the time difference? I know the Mattel factory in Mexico burned down in 1970,but when did Mattel start manufacturing in Mexico again?
  Ok,so moving on to other differences.
  Drowsy on the left seems to be older. For one thing,she has the dry,crispy hair the older dolls have.

Dirty Drowsy has silkier hair, which I would say makes her later than Crispy Drowsy.

I said it was silkier. I didn't say it was manageable!
  Crispy has the same hair my Chatty Brother has.That would put her way back. I'm not sure how long Mattel used the Go-Crispy hair,but I know they used it back then. I'm 55, and I got Chatty Brother when I was less than 3 years old.Probably less than 2. She also has vinyl hands. I'm sure the cloth hand version is later, but how late?

I have seen them referred to as  'felt hands' ,but these at least, are cotton.
 I prefer the vinyl hands. Fortunately,later reproductions featured the vinyl hands, not the cloth ones.
Below is a late 60's ad for Drowsy. I know this because Newborn Thumbelina, advertised in the middle,below Drowsy,came out in 1968.

I got my Newborn Thumbelina for Christmas that year. You can see her HERE.

The Drowsy in the ad would appear to be the cleaner,albeit crispy haired Drowsy. Crispy Drowsy also has something the other girl doesn't.

A 'trap door' in her footie pjs.
Dirty Drowsy has no trap door.

And there's another difference: their tags are on opposite sides of their bodies.

As I showed you yesterday, original Drowsy had the trap door.

I'm pretty sure the 1999 reproduction had the trap door, but by then they were battery operated, and that's where the battery door was.
  And here's another difference. Dirty Drowsy has a shaped pink pullstring ring.

I suppose that's something that could have been replaced at some point.
Crispy has the regular ring.

Both of them have collars that aren't sewn to their bodies. 

The collars seem to have had elastic that has died over time, leaving the dolls with baggy lace 'necklaces'.
 Crispy has a face more like the earlier dolls.

Same crispy hair too.

Her face paint is very different from Dirty's.

I thought at first that Dirty just had very worn face paint. But in looking at it again, I see that,it's there. It's just not as dark,and the features aren't painted as large as Crispy's. Dirty has tiny little eyebrows and eensy little eyelashes. Her eyes are painted a different shade of blue,her pupils are much larger, and her shine dot is painted much smaller. Her lips are paler, and painted more narrow.

Kitty Drowsy has the same big lashes and smaller pupils as Cripsy Drowsy.

Dirty even seems to have a smaller head than Crispy.

Anybody know the years on these girls?

Tomorrow we'll see a Drowsy 'cousin'. See you then.

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