1986-87 Derek & Ken Rockers

A new line for 1986 was the pop band series of dolls and clothing called Barbie and The Rockers. Originally, the only male member was a new boy called Derek. Ken (with the Jewel Secrets Ken head-mold) was added in 1987, along with a second version of Derek. Mattel Spain (and possibly Mattel France) produced their own unique Dereks and Ken. In the rest of Europe the dolls and outfits themselves were identical to the US versions (with the exception of the logo on the 1st edition Derek’s t-shirt), but they were packaged differently, as Barbie & the Rock Stars. There are several foreign versions of these dolls, probably more than listed below.


DEREK #2428

1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek accessories

The European version came with a variation print t-shirt (modelled below right by Hawaiian Ken)

1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 Derek
Identification: © Mattel Inc. 1968 Taiwan
1986 #2428 Derek
1986 #2428 European version t-shirt
1986 #2428 Derek in original packaging
1986 #2428 Derek in original packaging
1986 #2428 Derek (Canadian version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Canadian version)
1986 #2428 Derek (European version)
1986 #2428 Derek (European version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Italian special edition)
1986 #2428 Derek (Italian special edition)

Mattel Mexico and Rotoplast in Venezuela also produced versions of this original Derek.

1986 #2428 Derek (Mexican version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Mexican version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Venezuelan version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Venezuelan version)

Mattel Spain produced unique versions of all three Rockers boys, but, as you can see, they weren’t particularly attractive. I know Mattel France also produced their own version of this Derek, with similar looks and the straight arm body-mold, though I have yet to find one complete.

1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version) accessories
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version) t-shirt
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)
1986 #2428 Derek (Spanish version)

KEN #3131

1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken
1987 #3131 Ken accessories
1987 #3131 Ken identification
Identification: © Mattel Inc. 1968 Malaysia (or Taiwan)
1987 #3131 Ken in original packaging
1987 #3131 Ken in original packaging
1987 #3131 Ken in original packaging
1987 #3131 Ken (Variation liner)
1987 #3131 Ken (Canadian version)
1987 #3131 Ken (Canadian version)
1987 #3131 Ken (European version)
1987 #3131 Ken (European version)
1987 #3131 Ken (European version)
1987 #3131 Ken (European version with variation liner)
1987 #3131 Ken (Spanish version)
1987 #3131 Ken (Spanish version)
1987 #3131 Ken (Spanish version) packaging
Reverse of Spanish packaging

DEREK #3173

1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek accessories
1987 #3173 Derek identification
Identification: © Mattel Inc. 1968 Taiwan (or Philippines)
1987 #3173 Derek in original packaging
1987 #3173 Derek in original packaging
1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek (Variation liner)
1987 #3173 Derek (Canadian version)
1987 #3173 Derek (Canadian version)
1987 #3173 Derek (European version)
1987 #3173 Derek (European version)
1987 #3173 Derek (Spanish version)
1987 #3173 Derek (Spanish version)

The shiny gold coating on Derek’s jacket often disintegrates with age, even in the factory-sealed box, revealing a kind of tan ‘leather’ look fabric (see pic below). This is often mistaken for a variation. Even when the gold coating remains intact, it is as fragile, and prone to flaking, as all Mattel ‘leather’ fabrics of this period.

1987 #3173 Derek
1987 #3173 Derek jackets

THE CLONE

Mattel-meets-Amadeus with this Derek clone Rocker doll called ‘Boss’ by EL GRECO in Greece. El Greco produced their own Barbie & Ken-type doll range called BiBi-Bo. The unpacked doll on the right is presumably a later version, as his face is practically identical to the Rockers Ken.

c.1986 Greek clone Rocker doll by El Greco
c.1986 Greek clone Rocker doll by El Greco
c.1986 Greek clone Rocker doll by El Greco
c.1987 Greek clone Rocker doll by El Greco

THE OUTFITS

There were three extra outfits produced. The Rockers Fashions were released in 1986, and the Concert Tour Fashions in 1987. At least one of these outfits (#2691 shown below) was also produced by Mattel Spain. The Concert Tour outfit came with a whole load of stickers and cut-outs. I bought the Rockers Fashions out-of-box, so do not know if they also originally came with extras.

BARBIE AND THE ROCKERS FASHIONS #1177

1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions socks
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions in original packaging
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions in original packaging
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions (European version)
1986 #1177 Rock Stars Fashions (European version)

BARBIE AND THE ROCKERS FASHIONS #2691

1986 #2691Rockers Fashions
1986 #2691 Rockers Fashions
1986 #2691Rockers Fashions
1986 #2691 Rockers Fashions
1986 #2691Rockers Fashions
1986 #2691 Rockers Fashions
1986_2691_Barbie_Rockers_04
1986 #2691 Rockers Fashions sneakers
1986 #2691Rockers Fashions in original packaging
1986 #2691 Rockers Fashions in original packaging
1986 #2691Rockers Fashions
1986 #2691 Rock Stars Fashions (European version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars (Spanish version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars (Spanish version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars (Spanish version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars (Spanish version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars (Spanish version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars shoes (Spanish version)
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars
1986 #2691 Vestuario Rock Stars (Spanish version) in original packaging
1986 #2691Rockers Fashions
Jacket details (US version left / Spanish version right)

CONCERT TOUR FASHIONS #3395

1986 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1987 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1986 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1987 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1986 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1987 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1986 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions
1987 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions accessories
1987 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions in original packaging
1987 #3395 Concert Tour Fashions in original packaging
1987 #3395 Tour Fashions (European version)
1987 #3395 Tour Fashions (European version)

BOOKLETS & CATALOGUES

From 1986 World of Fashion booklet
From 1986 World of Fashion booklet
From 1986 World of Fashion booklet
From 1986 World of Fashion booklet
From Mattel Toys 1986 catalogue
From Mattel Toys 1986 catalogue

The Sears Wish Books for 1986 and 1987 offered unique own-brand clothing sets for Derek & Ken.

From 1986 Sears Wish Book
From 1986 Sears Wish Book
From 1986 Canadian Sears Christmas catalogue
From 1986 Canadian Sears Christmas catalogue
1986 JCPenney Christmas catalogue
1986 JCPenney Christmas catalogue
From 1986 Spiegel Christmas catalogue
From 1986 Spiegel Christmas catalogue
From 1986 French Barbie booklet
From 1986 French Barbie booklet
From 1986 French Barbie booklet
From 1986 French Barbie booklet

Despite the stock photos in the Spanish booklet below, their Derek was only ever produced with the straight-arm body mold. The French booklet above also features a straight-arm Derek, looking remarkably similar to the Spanish doll. I have noticed this Derek for sale (out-of-box) in France. I’d always assumed he was the Spanish version, but now I’m convinced that Mattel France also produced some Dereks like this.

1986 Italian Rock Stars Derek advertisement
1986 Italian Rock Stars Derek advertisement
From 1986 Spanish Barbie booklet
From 1986 Spanish Barbie booklet
From Mattel Toys 1987 catalogue
From Mattel Toys 1987 catalogue
From Mattel Toys 1987 catalogue
From Mattel Toys 1987 catalogue
From 1987 European Barbie booklet
From 1987 European Barbie booklet
From 1987 Sears Wish Book For Kids
From 1987 Sears Wish Book For Kids
From 1987 JCPenney Christmas catalogue
From 1987 JCPenney Christmas catalogue
From 1987 Canadian Sears Wish Book
From 1987 Canadian Sears Wish Book
From 1987 French Barbie booklet
From 1987 French Barbie booklet
From 1987 French Barbie booklet
From 1987 French Barbie booklet

THE SOUTH AMERICAN ROCK KENS & DEREKS

BASA PERU

Basa produced a Rockers Derek/Ken with the Great Shape Ken head-mold with two-tone brown hair. His outfit is a unique silver-grey version of Derek’s gold ensemble. There are three variations of t-shirts, glove and socks; purple, red and blue. Basa Kens usually have pale ghostly faces, as the plastic discolours with age. The screenshot is from a period BASA TV advertisement.

c.1987 Rockers Ken or Derek Basa Peru
c.1987 Rockers Ken or Derek
c.1987 Rockers Ken or Derek from Basa TV commercial Peru
c.1987 Rockers Ken or Derek from Basa TV commercial Peru

TOP TOYS ARGENTINA

Top Toys released a Kenny Rock Star doll, a very watered-down version of the Rockers Ken, with the Great Shape era head-mold with mid-brown hair.

Kenny Rock Star
1986 Kenny Rock Star
c.1987 Kenny Rock Star
Reverse of packaging

ESTRELA BRAZIL

Estrela produced several Rock-inspired Bobs and Kens, all with the Superstar-era head-mold. Curiously, they start off really wild, all tight leather and chains, and become slowly more conservative each year.

1986 #105307 Bob
1986 #105307 Bob
1986 #105308 Bob
1986 #105308 Bob
1987 #10.53.12 Ken Roqueiro in original packaging
1987 #10.53.12 Ken Roqueiro in original packaging
1987 #105312 Ken Roqueiro t-shirt
1987 #105312 Ken Roqueiro t-shirt