Toy Fair 2019 was a big year for Mattel, who is celebrating 60 years of Barbie. The iconic doll debuted at the fair in 1959 and the legacy continues with a vast assortment of new Mattel products revealed to the world for the first time. Disney fans will be excited to see new Mattel toys from Toy Story 4 and Disney Pixar’s Cars. There were a few other Disney surprises in the showcase of classic toy lines that include brands like Hot Wheels, Polly Pocket, Fisher Price, and Little People. Welcome to the top floor of the Javits Convention Center, an entire floor that is 100% Mattel!
Toy Story 4
A lighted poster display in Mattel’s atrium was the first sign that they have big plans for Toy Story 4. Not only are they bringing classic and new characters to life, they are also applying the Toy Story brand to some classic Mattel products.
After passing through a rotunda of Mattel’s core brands, the Toy Story 4 display was the first area I encountered. Front and center was a line of posable action figures that will debut this Spring ahead of the film’s June 21st release date. Each figure will retail for $9.99 and characters will include Buzz, Woody, Jessie, Bullseye, Rex, Slinky, Bo Peep, Forky, Ducky, and Bunny.
Mattel is taking playtime to “Infinity and beyond” with the Buzz Lightyear Star Command Spaceship Playset. The Buzz Lightyear figure that comes with the set features glow in the dark accents. As for the ship, it splits apart to become four separate vehicles, including a moon rover, flying pod, and base camp. The ships all have lights and sounds, in addition to some extra accessories. You won’t find this in stores when the movie hits theaters, but it will be available in the Fall just in time for the holiday shopping season.
Three pretend play items allow kids to play as Buzz Lightyear and Bo Peep. The Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Armor with Jet Pack allows kids to wear a talking Buzz Lightyear helmet with a dome that lifts up. The Buzz Lightyear Rapid Disc Blaster goes on your wrists and features lights, sounds, and five projectiles. The Bo Peep Action Staff includes motion activated sounds so kids can jump into action as their favorite shepherd girl. All of these items will debut this Spring.
Toy Story 4 Minis is a blind-bag series of collectible figures. Each bag will retail for $3.99 and the figures all feature adorable redesigns from new and classic Toy Story characters.
The Imaginext Buzz Bot is a Buzz Lightyear inspired robot that transforms into different levels of play. The right arm becomes a projectile launcher, the left is a claw that can pick things up and both feet become storage space. Opening his chest reveals a command center, and an alien figure fits inside his head.
Toy Story 4 Barbie pays homage to the 1980’s workout doll that inspired the character in the film. While her face may be Superstar era, her body is more articulated than dolls of that time, with bendable elbows and wrists bringing a modern Barbie trend to what is otherwise a bit of a throwback release. The Epic Moves Bo Peep Action Doll features her original pink dress, in addition to her more adventurous blue romper from the new film.
Three of the upcoming Toy Story 4 Hot Wheels cars were on display. The set will include Buzz, Woody, Aliens, Rex, Forky, Ducky, and Bunny.
A wide array of new toys inspired by Disney Pixar’s Cars will debut this Spring, including new diecast releases and extra large characters. But the real emphasis is on three new playsets split between two themes. The first is all about XRS Mud Racing, inspired by Thunder Hollow. All of the cars in this wave feature mud-splashed bodies, oversized wheels, and all terrain suspension. The XRS Mud Racing Crash Challenge playset features an adjustable loop and the ability to reconfigure the set to send two cars speeding into each other.
This Fall, the emphasis will shift to drag racing with another line of themed diecast cars that are ready to tear up the track. The XRS Drag Racing Playset with a fair start gate, automatic winner flag, and the ability to split the set apart to create a cactus jump.
Also in the Fall, kids will feel like they’ve really been to Radiator Springs with the Race Around Radiator Springs Playset. It comes with a Lightning McQueen car and includes the Cozy Cone Motel and Flo’s V-8 Cafe in addition to a unique bending track.
In addition to co-starring in Toy Story 4, Barbie is celebrating her 60th anniversary this year. Before entering the gallery, the very first Barbie in her black and white bathing suit was on display.
The centerpiece of the Barbie gallery included a giant dream house surrounded by dolls engaging in recreational activities, plus a fantasy section themed to Dreamtopia. This Dreamhouse debuts this Fall and retails for $199.99 This gallery gives a thorough overview of the wide range of Barbie products available now and coming soon.
National Geographic will be one of Disney’s brands after the Fox acquisition is complete. Coming this fall is a National Geographic line of Barbie dolls, where she takes on careers including a Wildlife Conservationist, Astrophysicist, Polar Marine Biologist, Wildlife Photojournalist, and Entomologist. The Butterfly Scientist Playset includes a tree that reveals hidden butterflies and a table to examine them on.
In celebration of Barbie’s 60th Anniversary, a playline updates six of her most iconic careers over the decades. The back of the packaging showcases Barbie’s history in that field, including an astronaut, political candidate, pilot, news anchor, firefighter, and an athlete. This collection is available now.
From the Barbie Signature line of collector dolls comes three releases that celebrate Barbie’s 60 years of iconic fashions. The official 60th Anniversary Barbie celebrates Barbie’s diamond anniversary in a gemstone dress and her most modern style. She even includes a themed price, $60. Proudly Pink Barbie is a throwback to her original Silktone style and the first time a Silktone doll has had pink hair. Both of these dolls will debut this Spring, while a third release is expected later this year in a black and white ball gown inspired by Barbie’s original bathing suit.
Barbie Dreamtopia is a fantasy line that expands this year with even more mermaid, princess, and unicorn fun. This Spring, kids can add Brush n’ Sparkle Unicorn to their Barbie playtime, which features four different light and sound shows when her hair is brushed. This Fall, the Barbie Slime Mermaid adds sensory fun to the franchise where each doll comes with two colors of sparkly slime that can be added inside her transparent fin.
Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures adds new toys themed to caring for babies and pets. Barbie Babysitters Inc. pairs Skipper with a baby doll in a variety of options, including a Bath Time Playset available this Spring and a Nursery Playset this Fall. Also in the Fall, Barbie cares for her pet horse in the Hugs N’ Horses Playset and gives her dog a bath in the Play & Wash Playset.
Barbie is about to embark on a world tour, and I’m not referencing her pink limo trip around Epcot’s World Showcase. Barbie’s Helicopter is available this Spring and can seat two dolls. This Fall, air travel will take her farther with the Barbie Travel Dream Plane, which includes luxurious amenities like a dining cart and in-flight meals. An array of travel dolls and accessories will also debut this Spring and Fall.
Continuing the tradition of Barbie Careers, she will expand into new fields this Fall. A Cake Decorating Playset finds Barbie becoming a cake boss and includes pieces that let her bake, decorate, and display her creations. Three individual dolls will also be available, each with two career outfits that include a biochemist, musician, veterinarian, artist, athlete, and chef.
We wrap up our time in Barbie’s world with a look at expansions coming to the Fashionistas series. With this new Spring wave of dolls, the series will have had over 100 unique looks and the series is committed to representing Barbie in a realistic variety of skin tones and body types. More will be coming in the Fall, including the first Barbie with a prosthetic leg, which will be removable. This Fall will also add the first Barbie in a wheelchair, which even includes a ramp that can be used to help her access a variety of Barbie playsets, including the Dreamhouse. For kids who love to play with Barbie’s hair, the Rainbow Sparkle Hair doll comes out this Spring and the Ultimate Curls doll will debut this Fall.
If Barbie is Mattel’s most infamous girl-centric brand, Hot Wheels is certainly that for boys. In fact, it’s usually the “Boy toy” against Barbie when Mattel takes over McDonald’s Happy Meals. The centerpiece of their display highlighted an array of Hot Wheels products, including some Disney licensed cars and a Barbie 60th Anniversary release.
Hot Wheels Monster Trucks is the next big thing from this brand. As proof, there’s a live tour event going on now in cities across America. Mini Monster Trucks and diecast vehicles debut this Spring, along with action cars with demolition and bashing features. Playsets are coming this fall, including the 2-in-1 Mobile Downhill Race.
Last Fall, Mattel’s Lego City brand became reptilian with the Ultimate Gator Car Wash. That line expands this Spring with an array of Dinosaur themed play sets, including the Smashin’ Triceratops and smaller playsets. In the Fall, the T-Rex Rampage adds even more prehistoric fun to the line.
Hot Wheels Track Builder adds experimental elements to the Hot Wheels system. A Deluxe Stunt Box and Vertical Launch Kit will debut this Fall, allowing kids to expand their creativity and defy gravity with their race tracks.
Polly Pocket is celebrating 30 years of micro fun and the popular 1990’s toy line is back! A few throwback pieces will recreate her original style, but she has otherwise been redesigned and updated for a new generation, including an animated series on Hulu. New compact playsets will debut this Spring and Fall, but the big exciting release is the Pollyville Mega Mall, which features several stories of fun activities, including a movie theater. Smaller shops sold separately can be added to expand Pollyville, and Polly’s house will offer another larger playset to the series.
The Lil’ Glimmerz line of light-up interactive animal characters will expand this Fall with a new line of glittery animals, as well as babies.
Two new Mega Blocks releases will thrill toddlers this Fall. The Mega Blocks Chompin’ Croc is a sit and scoot ride-on crocodile that comes with an assortment of blocks. Cleanup time becomes a game when you ride over blocks to scoop them back into his belly. Suggested retail price will be $34.99.
Mega Blocks Jungle Tree House Band allows kids to stack and create a jungle escape, while placing animal figures on the included bases will create sounds. They can create their own music, with over 100 possible combinations. Suggested retail price will be $39.99.
Fisher Price was a Toy of the Year Award Winner this year for their Think & Learn Rocktopus. This interactive musical toy is a game, but also an educational tool that teaches math concepts for preschool ages. It’s an exciting product for parents of young children and perfectly demonstrates the significant advancements of the Fisher Price brand through the years.
This Fall, Code ‘n Learn Kinderbot will help kids get ready for Kingdergarten that teaches colors, letters, shapes, and coding. It comes with a secret codes booklet to unlock even more fun. Suggested retail price is $59.99.
The world of Disney’s Frozen meets Fisher Price’s Little People series this Fall. Elsa’s Ice Palace features an extendable playset that lights up and plays “Let It Go.” Elsa and Olaf figures come with the playset and when placed on bases, activate magical features. Kristoff’s Sleigh comes with Anna, Kristoff, and Sven. The lamp on the sleigh lights up and when you move it, the sleigh bounces.
Beetlemania comes to the Little People world with the Yellow Submarine four-pack of figures.
Linkimals is a new line of interactive infant toys that respond to a baby’s movements. When you have more than one, they link together to create a show of synchronized music and lights. This line will debut this Fall and products range in price from $9.99 to $29.99.
Wonder Makers is a new line of gender neutral, mixed material toys that inspire kids to “Imaginat, design, and create.” This series will debut this Fall and different play sets allow kids to create locations, cars, and roads. Nearly everything can come apart to be reassembled in a variety of ways. The same pieces that make tracks can also be used to create buildings. With a mix of wood, plastic, and fabric pieces, it adds sensory elements that are missing from similar products from other brands. Prices vary from $4.99 for individual vehicles to $39.99 for bigger playsets.
Fisher Price Role Play items allow toddlers to be just like you! New sets this Fall allow kids to make their own cake pops, have a s’mores campfire, have a wallet full of the latest tech gadgets, and play doctor and patient.
Bounce & Spin Puppy is another great product for toddlers that promotes gross motor development while entertaining kids. You can bounce and spin 360 degrees while the puppy uses songs and phrases to teach alphabets, numbers, and colors. Suggested retail price will be $59.99.
Designed to help babies sleep, Sooth and Snuggle Otter will debut this Fall. This soft stuffed friend has a calming motion, soft lights, and gentle music in addition to a breathing pattern that mimics that of an adult, making babies feel like their parent is nearby. The motor is quiet and best of all, it’s machine washable. Suggested retail price will be $39.99.
The Fold & Go Portable Gym folds up to fit inside of a diaper bag and pops open thanks to two foldable arches. The bottom has a soft mat and four oceanic toys dangle from the roof to satisfy sensory needs, including teething. It debuts this Fall for $29.99.
The game of Uno gets a K-Pop spin this year with a BTS card pack. To celebrate, Mattel had a collection of outfits worn by the band on display at Toy Fair.
New this Spring is Uno Flip, which adds a double-sided card revealing element to the game that makes it more challenging. Dos adds another element to the game, action cards that can help thwart your opponents.
Pictionary Air will debut this Fall and uses a light pen and a mobile app to draw pictures in 3-dimensional space without paper. The app can be launched to smart TVs, turning your living room into a game. Turns can even be recorded for playback.
Lastly, a stacking game called Hackin’ Stackin’ Alpaca is coming soon, guaranteed to cause some stress for players as they take turns adding items to the alpaca’s back.
It’s clear that Mattel has some great products in store in 2019, from Toy Story 4, Cars, and Frozen toys to their most iconic traditions thriving in the future. It’s a big year for Barbie, Hot Wheels, Polly Pocket, and Fisher Price. There’s a little something for everyone from Mattel.
Alex has been blogging about Disney films since 2009 after a lifetime of fandom. He joined the Laughing Place team in 2014 and covers films across all of Disney’s brands, including Star Wars, Marvel, and Fox, in addition to books, music, toys, consumer products, and food. You can hear his voice as a member of the Laughing Place Podcast and his face can be seen on Laughing Place’s YouTube channel where he unboxes stuff.