There are several internet postings describing how Isi seems to be an affront to Native American culture. While I am not familiar with the different tribes and cultures of Indigenous/Native America, I was personally happy to see Native American legend represented, and she has quickly become one of my favorites, but, arguably, this design and concept amalgamation is regarded as an insult and disgrace.
Has any other Monster High character received this kind of backlash? What will it mean for Isi's future?
While it was for a different reason, there was a huge backlash on Clawdeen with her bed set, due to it "encouraging" girls to shave at a young age.
I always laugh when people get up in arms about these characters because they aren't meant to truly represent any race/nationality/ethnicity in particular since they are not from our world. If they really wanted to get upset over the characters misrepresenting things, how about the fact that Scarah doesn't have an Irish accent when she speaks? Or that Manny doesn't have anything related to Greek or Roman mythos? Or that Operetta's design uses spiders instead of more music related themes? They don't and shouldn't because the POINT of the dolls/show/movies is that you are awesome, no matter what "freaky flaws" you might have. The fact that these characters don't fully represent their heritage (scaritage) as we would see it shows that.
Sorry, I might have gone a bit off topic there. My point is that they aren't of this world, so people need to cool their jets. Take this kind of thing as a chance to talk to your child about the culture that the doll would be from if s/he was from our world and teach them.
On a side note, based on an earlier comment, based on the culture they represent-ish, there are very few "white" characters:
Scarah - Irish
Draulcuara - Romanian/Transylvanian
Operetta - French (technically)
Jackson/Hold - English
Wolf family - technically of English descent (though could be Greek if you go by the origin of the term Lycanthropy) but visually/personality more African-American
Ghoulia - hard to say since many different places have Zombies. I would say more Creole or African for her.
Spectra - Ghosts are from everywhere, though she seems more European
I have to admit, I kinda liked the whole "zombies are jewish" theory someone had lol. The whole "own culture" thing and the origin of US zombies emigrating to the US in the 1930s (it's in a webisode somewhere) suggests they're probably of european origin, eastern european possibly or even italian or any of those minority groups that emigrated in the early 20th century and now have their own "insertminority American" culture and identity.
But yeah, there's a few who could be any ethnicity and several who are clearly supposed to be a particular one (there's no getting around the fact that Honey and the werewolves were obviously designed with african american features in mind) but there's not too many that are explicitly white and can ONLY be white. There's a few, but given how many MH characters there are? It's quite remarkable how few actually ARE white european.
All the controversy had me looking twice at her and after some reflection I bought her and Batsy when I saw them both at Walmart on sale. In the end I decided she was okay and I liked her just fine. I can't say I am totally thrilled with her outfit but she herself is pretty cute...
I thought it was interesting, Walmart.com has all 3 of the Brand Boo Student dolls are for sale, They list the correct names for the other two dolls, but Isi is called "deer girl", I did a search for Isi Dawn Dancer on the Walmart site and it showed the BYBY trio instead. Are they trying to avoid problems with the protesters?
I hadn't planned to get any of those dolls yet, but since I had a gift card to use, I got Isi.
I don't think she is. I think the inclusion is awesome! We should be represented as well.
More native North American monsters! Sasquatch, Wiindigo, Ogopogo (and other big snake/lake creatures), Mothman, Chupacabra, Lake mermaids, Water Panther, Waheela, Adlet, Shunka Warakin, Jersey Devil, Thunderbirds/Big Bird, Swamp Ape/Skunk Ape... so many monsters here, native to the Northern American continent - do it! :D
I'm Native American, and I think she looks great, and my parents are in love with her too. The way she's depicted isn't a shitty stereotype, so I'm happy. As long as she doesn't run around in tribal clothing, chanting in front of a fire, I'm fine.