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Mermaid Mania!

Remember this was before the Disney Princess marketing which came about in the late 90s early 2000s. This does not include any fandom revivals from movie re-releases.

After The Little Mermaid came out in 1989 mermaids were going strong. They stayed strong for a few years. I think until 1993 or 1994.


The comic was ok. I think it followed the story line of the Saturday morning cartoon series. As a kid I’d rather read Chip N Dale Rescue Rangers or Darkwing Duck comics.


I didn’t like the cartoon much. It confused me, and I felt the cannon was off. I only watched it for one maybe two seasons. 

I remember there being Tyco dolls based off the characters in the series besides Ariel. There was also a set of Burger King toys.


There were a few imitators. Saban had the Little Mermaid series. 

I know this series is very beloved by people in my age range, but I could never really get into it.  I do remember the theme song.

There was a blond little mermaid doll with a video of a (non-Disney) version of the movie. I think it was the movie released in 1992. 

Multi Toys Corp had some mermaid dolls and figures with very colorful packaging.  

There were a few more imitators

Pretty Mermaid 

Mermaid Princess 

There were a lot of other mermaid inspired toys. With red haired mermaids on the packaging that suspiciously looked a lot like Ariel. 


 My Pretty Mermaid


I don’t remember this toyline really well. I never had any as kid. I think I remember seeing the commercials as a kid and wanting them. I wanted most toys I saw on tv from about 1986-1997. They seemed like a mix between Dolly Surprise, My Little Pony and The Little Mermaid.

Lil Miss Singing Mermaid


I had this doll. She was a nice variation from the Lil Miss line. She had a different body mold with fins! Almost all the other full size Lil Miss had color changing something - like hair, clothes or makeup. Lil Miss Singing Mermaid was no different. She had a color changing fin. 


The commercial is misleading. The girl in the commercial is sticking the doll’s head underwater which the instruction book the doll came with said not to do.

In my opinion I thought she was the best in the line since none of the other Lil Miss dolls talked or sang.

I was sad because I lost her boa at school. I wore it in my hair because I thought it was a cool looking scrunchie. 

Mermaid Barbie and Skipper

When Mattel didn’t get the rights for the Disney The Little Mermaid dolls they made Barbie “knockoffs”. There were a few Barbie mermaid dress up sets. 

This one with the bubble necklace is very early 90s.

There was Mermaid Barbie, 

Mermaid Skipper and the Sea Twins, 

Fountain Mermaid Barbie, 

and Magical Hair Mermaid Barbie (European exclusive).


The Fountain Mermaid Barbie has pink hair. I guess that is the closest Mattel could get to red hair.  

I’m not including Jewel hair mermaid Barbie. By 1995, the mermaid craze was already over. 

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raptor Posted on Feb 22, 2013 at 08:59 PM

I'm drowning in mermaids! (pardon the pun)
It's obvious that girls are as bad as boys when it comes to opening up their wallets, or pocketbooks, for any version or variant of a super-popular item.

Hence, the reasoning for my "Curse of the Variant" article.
Liked this one pikachu.

Vaporman87 Posted on Feb 22, 2013 at 08:33 PM

Mermaids are STILL a big seller. I know this because my daughter loves them and manages to find every single one that she DOES NOT have and attempts to get me to buy them.

It is funny to see how, when something gets enough attention, then all of the knock-offs come out of the wordwork. Some are good, some terrible.

Anyhow, this was a fun article. Once again, thank you for this pikachulover!

Benjanime Posted on Feb 22, 2013 at 08:28 PM

yeah, i remember seeing the toys all over the place when nickelodeon was still in its golden age as they showed commercial after commercial of different mermaid toys.

great article!

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