I watched a documentary last night about a new type of doll called a Reborn
. The dolls are highly customised to make them look as close to a real baby as possible even down to features such as veins and scratches. They weigh about the same as a real baby and have rooted hair and even manicured nails. The result is a doll like the one below.
The documentary which was shown on Channel 4 last night followed a lady who customises these dolls in order to make them look as real as she can. Personally I find the dolls more than a little disturbing but what I found more disturbing was some of the people that purchase them.
The programme centred on a few individuals, one lady who has converted a room in her house into a nursery. She owned several dolls and spent her time buying them expensive clothes, changing their nappies and styling their hair. She even went as far as to take them out shopping with her in a pram. The programme went onto to show her excitement at going to the US specifically to pick up her new “baby”, only to find it was not perfect and she would need to leave it behind, despite the fact she had already bonded with it.
Another lady featured in the documentary wanted a baby as a substitute grandson. Her grandson Harry had lived with her for the first few years of his life, when his mother had met a new partner and emigrated leaving the grandmother, missing the baby. Her solution was to visit the doll maker who made her a “Harry baby” which she appeared to adore. Her husband, however, was not so enthusiastic bout the new addition to the family. Personally I felt this lady would have benefitted from either spending some time with her real grandson or seeking some help to get over her feeling of loss.
You can view some of the clips from the documentary
here but I think most people will agree there is something slightly odd about a grown woman pushing a doll around a shopping centre in a pram. As for the dolls themselves I’m not sure why but they remind me a little bit of Childs Play
, maybe I’m missing the point? Either way the programme made interesting viewing.