I’m sure you heard, a sweet old lady named Susan Myers in Florida started a petition last week to have Breaking Bad action figures removed from Toys R’ Us, and not surprisingly has succeeded, as the giant toy chain succumbed due to the negative media and backlash it was receiving from it. A lot of parents were getting pretty upset over the toys, but quite frankly there are many other toys that are carried at these stores that are way worse than any Breaking Bad toy that you will ever find.
Now I’m not saying that parents should run right out and purchase these Breaking Bad toys for their children for Christmas, but I don’t think it’s fair for Toys R’ Us to be singled out, targeted and attacked, when ultimately it’s the parents responsibility to monitor what their children purchase and play with. Plus, many adults collect toys, I know grown men who have every single Star Wars action figure ever made proudly displayed in glass cases in their homes, so I think it’s safe to say that there is a market for these toys.
Since I think it’s a bit absurd that these toys were removed from the stores, I wanted to share with you some of the other toys that Toys R’ Us carries online and in their stores:
Walking Dead Action Figures
As you can see, this Walking Dead action figure toy set promotes violence and even has a gun pointed at another one of the action figures. Also note that this toy doesn’t have an age limit on it – well unless your under 3, so basically any kid can walk in to a store and buy this without any issues whatsoever.
Dexter Board Game
Dexter Board Game – As Dexter, travel through the streets of Miami trying to hunt down a suspect that has slipped through the cracks of the justice system and make them your next victim. Keep your day job by completing blood spatter reports to avoid any suspicion and reap the rewards of a job well done. In the meantime, try to avoid your opponents, who will expose you, the first chance that they get. Once you have found your suspect and have collected the tools that you need, you must head over to the marina to get rid of the evidence and win the game.
Now this Dexter board game based on the show Dexter, which is about a serial killer, does have a 17+ warning on it, but still I’d assume it would be pretty easy for a kid to order it from their online store. This board game is stained with bloody graphics and features various murdering scenarios, including ways to dispose of a body – but no one seems to have an issue with this being sold by Toys R’ Us.
Grand Theft Auto 5
Los Santos: a sprawling sun-soaked metropolis full of self-help gurus, starlets and fading celebrities, once the envy of the Western world, now struggling to stay afloat in an era of economic uncertainty and cheap reality TV. Amidst the turmoil, three very different criminals plot their own chances of survival and success: Franklin, a former street gangster, now looking for real opportunities and serious money; Michael, a professional ex-con whose retirement is a lot less rosy than he hoped it would be; and Trevor, a violent maniac driven by the chance of a cheap high and the next big score. Running out of options, the crew risks everything in a series of daring and dangerous heists that could set them up for life.
Grand Theft Auto has been a game for years that has pushed the envelope as far as violence in video games go, and in their last version you can pretty much do anything that you want, no matter how violent. Here are some of the things that you can do in the game that isn’t listed on the Toys R’ Us website: Drive a bus off a cliff, Kick a dog to death, Crash a Jet into a freeway, Take hostages, Torture terrorists, and many more violent and graphic things that I don’t even feel comfortable writing about. And guess what? Toys R’ Us sells it!
Yeah, this is a game that very well may be the most violent video game ever made and you can walk into any Toys R’ Us store and buy it, but they have removed the Breaking Bad action figures from their shelves because one parent decided that every other parent in the world needed her help with making the decision if the toys were suitable for their children or not.
Dear Sweet Old Lady In Florida Who Thinks That Everyone Needs Her Help With Making Parenting Choices,
I can appreciate your passion for wanting to keep children away from toys that you feel as though are inappropriate for them to play with, but personally I think you went about this in the wrong way. I don’t think it was the right thing to do to bring negative publicity to Toys R’ Us for carrying a toy that you, and many others, including me mind you, think is inappropriate for children. Why? because that is a decision for the parents to make themselves, not a decision that parents need someone else to make for them. I’ve shown three other toys available by Toys R’ Us that are arguably more violent and inappropriate than the Breaking Bad action figures – so why are we singling out one specific set of toys?
This is the thing, I don’t have a problem with stores selling these types of toys because I know that my child isn’t going to go home with one of them, but what if I wanted to pick one up for my office? I damn sure couldn’t buy a Walter White action figure from Toys R’ Us because you, and your recent actions have already made that choice for me. It just doesn’t seem right.
I also don’t like the GTA video games. They are too violent for my kids, but I have no problem with Toys R’ Us selling them, because again, it’s the parents responsibility to police what their children are exposed to – it’s not the job of the retailer, the government or anyone else.
Again, I can appreciate your concern but I think your actions were a bit misguided.
Now, thanks to you, I have to hop over to Amazon to buy my Walter White action figure.