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Meet Barbie's New Beau-Blaine!

By John Medeiros

Yes, the rumors circulating last February and then confirmed by Mattel, have now reaped vinyl evidence. At my local TRU this past weekend-there he was. Blaine.the new guy in the "Cali" series.and as it turns out, Barbie doll's new boyfriend. Long known as Barbie's sweetheart, Ken has been dumped and a new hunk from Down under has dethroned him.

From the text on the doll's box: "Moving to Southern California has turned out to be surprisingly awesome. The people are totally cool and laid back and it is a good fit for my extreme sports lifestyle. I can hit the waves at sunrise, the rails at noon and get in some dirt biking or rock climbing before sundown. It's the ultimate! Today was no exception.

Jumped in my 4x4 this morning and hit the waves with my surfing buddies at sunrise. We caught some pretty radical rides. At one point I looked back to shore and caught my sister with some friends heading into the surf. I couldn't take my eyes off the blonde. It's not like me to hang around my baby sister and her friends, but something about her was different. I made a note to self to casually meet up with them later.

I spotted them at the boardwalk café drinking smoothies. She was definitely a babe! My sister gave me a strange look as I headed toward the table with my friends. We hung out for a couple of minutes, long enough for me to learn her name. I think I might have to spend more time with my sister.

As I jumped back into my 4x4 and headed up the coast for home, my mind kept drifting back to those beautiful blue eyes"

This is not the same "Blaine" that was released as a part of the Generation Girl series a few years back. This guy is a real hunk with a super face sculpt. Very realistic and handsome. My Mom has already claimed him as a matter of fact.

His rooted short hair is styled great and is various shades of blonde from sandy to sun-bleached. He has the tan Malibu look. As a matter of fact, Malibu Barbie and my Mom may be having a cat fight over him. His eyes are blue with light ash blond brows and real looking painted lips. His neck markings are 2001 Mattel Inc.

He has the basic play line Ken body with posable neck, shoulders, elbows, hips and knees. Also molded in a tan color and his back is marked Mattel, Inc.1968 Indonesia. Hopefully, a more posable body will be added down the line as the character develops.

He comes with a wardrobe of two mix and match beach style outfits ready to surf. Included are tan cargo shorts with key chain, tropical isle print tee-shirt with long tan sleeves, navy tricot beach jacket with white sport stripe trim, island print surfer shorts, Two-toned blue sweatshirt, white knit cap, beaded rope necklace and walking boots.

His cool accessories include a boogie board, swim fins, sunglasses, sunscreen, bottled water and two energy bars.

The packaging on this wave is great. The larger gift set boxes have a thatched hut roof top, really giving them a tropical look. The doll also comes with a vintage-like wrist tag with his name on it.

Inside the box is a copy of the "Cali Girl Zine" and there are a couple of interesting things to note about it. The mag has bios of all the Cali characters except Ken, although he does make it to the pullout poster and is shown in several photos. Blaine's bio says he hails from Sydney, Australia. Another new character named "Summer" (gorgeous!!!) is also from Blaine's hometown and is his sister as a matter of fact.

The ultimate insult to Ken doll comes in the form of one of the games in the magazine. In "Every day's a Beach Party" we are shown two seemingly identical photos of a beach scene and asked to find 9 things different between the two photos. The first one I noticed? Ken is missing from the second photo.

I understand that Ken will still make appearances in the Barbie line. He will just no longer be identified as Barbie's boyfriend. He is now relegated to the "Friends and Family" of Barbie.