* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Introduction * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
My 2 year old Oscar adores Mickey Mouse, and with his birthday so close to Christmas we now currently own lots of the play sets, as well as teddy's and dvds, so from Santa we wanted something slightly different. I used to dance, and now Oscar loves dancing so we will often dance around the living room to Usher or Jason Derulo. We went shopping just before Christmas and my fiancé spotted this in a toy shop, we went into have a look and immediately knew it had to be on Oscar's list, but priced at £60 we felt it was quite expensive so I came home and found it on ebay for a lot cheaper than shop prices, there was quite a few used ones and brand new ones selling for near enough shop price, i left it a few weeks and I managed to get it brand new for £30 delivered....massive bargain considering they are still selling online at places such as Amazon for over £70!
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Dance Star Mickey * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
Mickey Mouse is an impressive size at 17.5 inches high. Made by Fisher Price, he is recommended for children ages 2 and up, so Oscar was just within the age bracket as he was 2 in November. Mickey is action packed with lots of ways to keep your child busy, with talking, walking and even dancing. Mickey looks exactly the same as in his TV programmes, with his usual smiley face. Mickey has his yellow shoes, red trousers that feature the mickey logo on the pockets and a black polo top showing 'Mickey' across the front. Mickey is operated by touching his left hand or left foot. His face is soft and fluffy to touch, with his body, legs and feet being quite hard, its not easy to grip so can be a little difficult for a little one to hold or carry. His hands are quite firm but you can feel a button and mechanics in his gloves. Mickey has 6 different songs and 2 interactive games. 6 AA batteries are supplied and need to be inserted into the bottom of his feet where you will also find the on/off switch. On the bottom of each foot is 4 wheels so that Mickey can slide across the floor and perform his many moves. Mickey is surface washable and always looks new with a wipe over with a damp cloth.
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Oscar In Play * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
We left Mickey Mouse as one of the last presents to be opened, and I'm glad we did, as soon as Oscar ripped open the wrapping paper he could see Mickey from inside the box and started shouting 'mi, mi, mi' (his name for Mickey Mouse as he is quite delayed with his speech). Mickey was immediately ripped out of the box, due to the size he immediately had the wow factor, especially to my little toddler. Oscar thought the real Mickey Mouse had come to live with us, so carried him everywhere (he did struggle, as Mickey is quite heavy at just over 2.15kg).
As said above, Mickey will sing 6 songs and plays 2 games, the games involve 'Mickey says', where he will sing the 'dance party song' setting tasks such as 'Mickey says, Reach for the sky, Mickey says wave your arms, Mickey says clap your hands, Mickey says dance etc'. The 2nd game is 'musical statue's' where Mickey will play some music where you have to dance and stop when the music stops. Pressing his hands will lead to the games.
In between songs, Mickey will have little sayings, such as 'Can you feel the beat?' 'Heya pal' 'Hot dog' 'Mickey Mouse here, are you ready to tear it up and get down', When tipped upside down or knocked over Mickey will say 'Clean up on isle 5' or 'How about a little help', once stood back on his feet Mickey will say 'Thanks pal!'
If not used for a few minutes Mickey will encourage more play by saying 'I've still got more dance in my step' or 'I'm not all danced out yet, come on, tap my foot and keep on dancing', if still not played with Mickey will say 'see ya later pal!', or 'So long, Mickey has left the building'.
Mickey has 6 songs that he sings, each song lasting aprox 2 mins. Pressing his foot to hear the songs, The songs include:
Dance party song
Shake your groove thing
Get up off my tail
Mickey Mouse song
Oscar can easily press Mickey's foot but does struggle a little with his hand, as he isn't sure where on his hand to press (its missing the usual, 'Press Here' sign),and you do need a little more force than my 2 year old has. Oscar adores Mickey and loves the variety of songs and phrases, he loves dancing to his R'N'B but thanks
to Mickey Mouse, Oscar now has a dance partner that can dance, sing and talk, Oscar can now do the moonwalk! He looks adorable and keeps Oscar busy for 30 minutes a time, but will easily drag him from his bedroom to the living room 2-3 times a day so we now know the songs off by heart.
Mickey is also great for listening and social skills, it gets everyone involved and because it is Mickey Mouse asking my kids to do something, they are always listening.
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Our Thoughts? * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
We were immediately impressed with Mickey Mouse, we saw him in the shop so was able to test him out before buying, both my fiancé and i said 'we have to get him' we knew Oscar would love him because it is Mickey Mouse, but aside from that its awesome what he can do. We were both a little stunned at the price but to be fair, Mickey does do quite a bit for the price. As you would expect, Looks wise he looks exactly like Mickey Mouse, when asking where the real Mickey Mouse is he will point at this and say 'der' so he believes its the real Mickey, which is lovely as he will carry him around, put him in the cot at night time with him, sit him on the sofa next to him if watching and dvd or drawing a picture etc, its great company for Oscar as he will talk to him then press his hand to hear Mickey talk and start dancing.
Mickey also sounds exactly like he does in the programme, we have a 'Clapping Hands Mickey Mouse' and a 'Talking Baby Mickey Mouse' and while they all sound exactly like the real Mickey, they are very limited to what they can do, meaning Oscar easily gets bored with them and they now sit unused in his cot. Mickey is very constructive and praises good dancing and encourages kids to keep on dancing and copy him to learn the new moves. He also changes his moves to each song, and looks quite natural when doing so, his hands and feet move with ease but when the batteries are starting to go you can hear some whirring sounds as he moves his hands and feet back into place and that does look quite mechanical when doing so but Oscar doesn't seem to notice.
Oscar loves to dance, not long turned 2 and he knows what music he likes, his nanny will play some Tom Jones to which isn't impressed at all but as soon as something dance like comes on he will start dancing and shaking his bottom so this Mickey is ideal because all the songs are upbeat which means little ones just want to get up and join in with dancing, its great fun but also a great way to encourage dancing and getting little kids (and even my nearly 5 year old!) to burn off some much needed energy. All of the dance moves are easily copied by a 2 year old, so there is nothing hard or difficult that he cannot copy.
The songs are really funny, and even had my partner and i chuckling, most of the songs will be recognisable to an adult but Mickey changes some of the words to make it relevant to him, for example, the song 'Get up off my tail' was originally 'Get up off that thing' but because Mickey has a tail he changes the words.
The variety of dance moves include the moonwalk, Mickey shaking his hands, moving his legs back and forth, twisting and turning meaning Mickey never gets boring, my boys love copying him, and learning new moves. Mickey has been dragged from pillar to post and has been dropped countless number of times, and still works and looks like new, he is probably one of the most durable and played with toys that we own. Oscar has a very shot attention span, and with Duplo and Disney cars being his most loved things to play with, i knew Oscar would love this, but it did cross my mind it would lose its appeal pretty quickly, but thankfully no! It keeps both boys busy so is lovely to watch the boys playing and copying Mickey, listening to Mickey's commands 'Wave your arms', 'Clap your hands' etc.
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Any Negatives? * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
I was only really disappointed with 1 thing with this, during the musical statues game, Mickey commands you to stop as soon as the music does, so my boys did this, but it didn't re-set itself afterwards, so my boys stood still and Mickey did nothing, we had to press the button to get him going again, by which point the song started over again, it didn't carry on from where it left off, my boys did get quite frustrated with this, which resulted in a lot of 'MUUUUUMMMMM!' My boys would shout me to come and get Mickey started again, very annoying if I'm busy doing washing up etc.
Also Mickey is pretty hard for a small person to carry, his body underneath the clothes is very shinny and slippery, meaning the clothes move easily over his body, but this does make it difficult for Oscar to carry him, being only 2 he only has little arms, and the only way to carry Mickey is to wrap his arms around him to lift and carry him, so he does struggle with this, but he does like to take him everywhere. His ears are pretty firm so I guess you could carry him like that but you are risk of breaking something.
Also be sure to buy re-chargeable or decent batteries, we have used the cheaper batteries with Mickey and he does work but keeps stopping and starting so wont sing all of his songs, he also goes through quite a lot of batteries because he is doing so much.
While we love Mickey, it would also be nice to through in some educational facts, he does this in the programme and my eldest will remember random things that Mickey has told him.
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Overall Thoughts? * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
While Mickey does seem a lot of money, you really do get your moneys worth, we paid a lot under the RRP, and while I wouldn't pay the full RRP for most things, this has to be one of the things I would pay full price for, its used 2-3 and sometimes 4 times a day for a good 20-30 minutes. Mickey is entertaining, fun to copy and also encourages little ones to get up and dance. Oscar sometimes goes to nanny and granddads house and will take Mickey with him, he then has both my parents up and copying Mickey which has my 2 boys in stitches laughing, so Mickey really is a great fun family toy, we can all get involved and my boys can play alone.....win win!
* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * Price And Availability * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *
Mickey is now available on Amazon for over £70, it is the only online shop selling him, which I was quite shocked about as he hasn't been out that long, but they have since upgraded to a Mickey that spins on his bottom etc, .... anyway Mickey can be brought from Ebay for £40 brand new (still a fab bargain) or £10 2nd hand.....which is amazingly cheap!
At a Glance Dance Star Mickey comes to life right before your eyes Features and benefits for Dance Star Mickey Dance Star Mickey comes to life right before your eyes. Now more realistic than ever, Mickey walks, talks, and dances to six different songs- he even does the Moonwalk.With multiple songs, interactive activities, and silly humour, Mickey is sure to knock your socks off. Come on and join the dance party. With 6 songs and 2 interactive games, you'll be moving and grooving with Mickey. Tons of dancing, laughter and fun with Mickey.Requires 6 x AA batteries, included.