Correction to This Article
An Aug. 2 Style article misidentified the manufacturer of Bratz dolls. It is MGA Entertainment, not Mattel.

'Bratz,' the Living Dolls

By Jennifer Frey
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, August 2, 2007

Breakfast with the Bratz at the Georgetown Ritz-Carlton:

Tresses are rich and free-flowing, jewelry is brightly colored and dangling. Belts are apparently in, heels are high, clothes are fashionable without exposing too much skin.

Special K and skim milk are favored food items ("with a side of scrambled eggs" in two instances). They eat off each other's plates.

The conversation is constant and intimate, with the four dolls-come-to-life talking over each other and telling stories out of school and giggling as if they've been friends for years -- rather than just the months since they first gathered to film "Bratz." The live-action version of the popular Mattel-marketed toys opens tomorrow.

"There are biffles and BFFs," explains Nathalia Ramos, who, at 15, plays Yasmin. "A biffle [as in BFFL, or best friend for life] is a fun friend that you phone. A BFF is a best friend forever that you love."

"What are we?" chimes in Skyler Shaye (Cloe).

"You are BFFs!" Nathalia says.

And they laugh, and Skyler explains that on the very first day they met -- when they were asked to start helping to develop their characters' personalities -- the Bratz got along so famously that they went to the bathroom and took pictures of each other in front of the mirror, then went home and texted back and forth half the night.

Is it genuine? Or have they become their own characters? Or does it even really matter? Isn't being a teenage girl so much about artifice, in its own way?

* * *

Here's the quick Bratz cheat sheet:

Skyler plays Cloe, the blond, soccer-loving daughter of a struggling single mom.

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