Baby Alive vs. Real Baby

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I still remember her big painted blue eyes, her blonde hair that was pulled into two cute little pigtails at the top of her head, and her strange o-shaped gaping mouth that would “chew” when I pushed on it with her hard plastic bottle. Oh, the glorious memories of “Baby Alive”, the doll that promised to be just like a real baby for millions of little girls across the US. “Baby Alive” provided me with hours upon hours of entertainment. OK, maybe 2 hours. Because after her food packets ran out and her diapers ran out, she was just a doll with a weird mouth and a suspicious-looking derriere. A child of young parents in the 80’s, my family didn’t have a lot of money to feed the extra little robotic mouth at the table, so “Baby Alive” didn’t see much food after her first week. She eventually went with a small group of other toys out to a “hideout fort” in the woods behind our house, where she and the other toys were thrown to the top of an abandoned railroad car by suspected child vandals.

Now that I’m grown and have a real baby, I can say with absolute certainty that “Baby Alive” does not live up to it’s promise of being “so real”.

– Real babies have horrendous gas. Baby Alive has airless passage of food.

– Real babies get constipated, and cry nonstop until they are finally able to go poop-poop. Why doesn’t Baby Alive do this?

– Despite the stories of Baby Alive munching up little girl’s hair in a dangerous fashion because of her “digestive gears” (older models), Baby Alive doesn’t ever grab handfuls of hair and yank them repeatedly while laughing as mommy yelps in pain.

– Baby Alive always keeps her hands and legs still. To make her more like a real baby, her arms and legs need to be constantly kicking, flapping about, clapping,  and slapping anyone who is holding her as they struggle.

– Baby Alive was only a couple of pounds, yet she talks. The typical talking 1 or 2 year old weighs between 20 and 30 lbs. Baby Alive should also raise her hands up in the air and whine, “Pick me up! Pick me up!”

– Baby Alive has soft plastic fingertips. Real babies have ultra-sharp little fingernails which they use to scratch themselves and others, leaving red scratches (and sometimes blood!) in their wake.

– Baby Alive doesn’t cry. This has to be the biggest downfall of this product. If they want her to be “so real”, they need to make her cry A LOT. Especially at night.

– It seems like Baby Alive comes with SO many accessories. Mine came with a bottle, bibs, a spoon, diapers, and little packets of food. She may have even had a hairbrush. I’m not sure. However, if she is going to be like a real baby, she needs 100 times more stuff. Each delivery of a Baby Alive doll will require a subsequent dropoff from a freight truck full of accessories. Crib, toys, 10 diapers a day, 5 different kinds of bottles because baby Alive will refuse the other 4 brands, swingy dangly toys, rolly toys, stuffed toys, pacifiers, gas drops, tylenol drops, strollers, carseats, stroller accessories, and carseat accessories. She will need food grinders, mesh self-feeding snack gadgets, food storage systems, multiple spoons, special BPA free bowls, vitamin D drops, multivitamin drops, lotions, bubble baths, bath toys….and more.  Much more.


I imagine a more accurate “Baby Alive” doll being similar to the movie “Chucky”, only with more accessories.

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