Living Dead DollsLiving Dead Dolls are 11" (28cm) tall plastic dolls which are sold in coffin-shaped boxes. Most of the main series dolls come with a death certificate, except for the showbiz-themed Series 5, which had coroner's reports. The death-date on the certificate is typically that of a significant historical event, or somebody's birth or death. There is also a short poem about each doll printed on the coffin packaging and/or the death certificate. The line of horror dolls was designed by Ed Long and Damien Glonek, and has been manufactured by Mezco Toyz since 2000.
The first Living Dead Dolls appeared for sale in 1998. They were craft dolls individually customized by either Ed Long or Damien Glonek. These customized dolls are called 'handmades' by fans and collectors. The first doll was made by Long using one of his mother's doll kits. He showed the doll to Glonek, and they worked together to make 12 more. After the dolls sold out immediately, Long & Glonek decided to make more for sale. These original handmade dolls were sold exclusively through Glonek's horror memorabilia mail order company Unearthly Possessions, as well as at horror conventions along the East Coast. It was at one of these conventions, Chiller Theatre, that Mike 'Mez' Markowitz, the founder of Mezco Toyz purchased one of the dolls. Mezco subsequently contacted Long and Glonek about manufacturing and distributing the dolls commercially.
After the dolls went into production, it was possible to request custom handmades directly from the creators. These custom handmades originally cost $666 apiece, later increased to $800. A custom handmade was the prize available to anyone who opened one of the five Series 5 blood-spattered chase dolls. In about 2004, Long & Glonek announced on the Mezco message boards that they would no longer accept commissions or make handmades to order, but would instead occasionally offer handmade dolls on eBay to the highest bidder.
The first commercial series of Living Dead Dolls, Series 1, was released early in 2001. Since then, new series have been released roughly twice a year. On Halloween 2008, Series 16 was released. Series 17 was released early 2009.