A review of The Dreamhouse, my inner child’s dream come true

Liz Curtin

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Photo by Liz Curtin

Barbie. She’s pink. She’s perfect. She’s fun. She’s been a massive part of my childhood through dolls, toys, youtube videos, songs, movies and online shorts. 

Then one day when I was a young tween, my aunt Kari gifted me a beautiful opportunity. She was going to take me to Barbie’s The Dreamhouse at the Mall Of America. Right then I knew, I would soon be experiencing the peak of my existence. 

The Dreamhouse was a replica of Barbie’s mansion from “Barbie: Life In The Dreamhouse,” an incredible animated sitcom series about the adventures of Barbie and her friends. 

It was absolute comedic gold, and if you’ve never seen it, I would highly recommend checking it out on YouTube. 

When we finally visited the experience, along with my mom, I couldn’t believe my eyes. At the entrance, there was a giant pink shoe waterfall surrounded by shrubbery and an arched doorway. It wasn’t exactly like the show, but it was very close. 

My aunt bought our tickets, but my mom chose to stay outside and sleep on a bench next to an impatient dad. I quickly ushered my aunt inside and, unfortunately, into a huge line. 

It looked like we were going to be waiting in a lobby for a long time. Plus there was barely anything to do while waiting except for a couple of photo opportunities. Despite my ADHD, I was able to endure and make it into the elevator. 

Once on, we were greeted by a video screen of Barbie welcoming us to The Dreamhouse. The elevator was extremely cramped though so I’m not sure how effective it is at introducing people to The Dreamhouse. 

After a while, the doors opened, letting us onto the first, and my least favorite, floor out of three. It wasn’t that the floor was boring, it was that it was a complete hodgepodge. And with my expert opinion as a connoisseur of fine Barbie merchandise, I will explain how. 

The first room you were let into is the kitchen which was similar to the show and had touch screens where you could make your own digital cupcake, which is a nod to the episode “Rhapsody in Buttercream”. 

However, then you enter the walk-in-fridge which strangely contains a sleigh inside it and some ice chairs, which is nothing like the show at all. 

I understand it was supposed to be a reference to “Barbie: A Perfect Christmas,” which I consider to be the film that started the downfall of decent Barbie cinema. 

The rest of the first floor, the living room, the outdoors and the bathroom were decent with plastic versions of the pets first seen in the episode “Pet Peeve.”

The outdoor area was odd because it wasn’t in the show at all, but the lighting wasn’t nearly as harsh in that room when compared to the others, so it was a nice place to relax. The final room, the bathroom, was the best room in the house. 

Not only did it contain many references to the show, but it also had a porpoise coming out of the toilet. Yes, you read that correctly, there was a porpoise in the toilet. When I saw that, I was completely overjoyed. 

It was a reference to the episode “Accidentally on Porpoise,” which was the first episode I ever watched as a child. The porpoise may have just been animatronic, but comforts my inner child to this day. Then my aunt and I made our way onto the elevator to the next floor.

The next floor was the bedroom and closet. The bedroom was decent but rather boring. The real winner of that floor was the closet. 

Mirrors were placed on both ends of the closet hall to simulate the infinite closet, a reference to “Closet Princess,” along with screens that allowed you to digitally try on different outfits. 

I made it my mission to try as many poses as I could to make sure the dress glitched out, and I eventually caused the screen to freeze. This floor has a Glitterizer from “Help Wanted” which, while non-functioning, was still a cool easter egg. 

Finally, my aunt and I made our way to the third floor, and while it wasn’t based on the show at all, it was still very cool. You could explore Barbie’s RV, concert stage, runway and more. It was a very cool area that I spent hours in, much to my aunt’s chagrin, as she wanted to leave soon. 

I wanted to get a Barbie makeover before we left but the line was ridiculous. All in all, I’m very happy my aunt agreed to take me on that experience and glad that she’s always willing to try new things for my sake.Curtin can be found at [email protected]