|Consumers line up to get their paws on a Hello Kitty character toy in a skeleton outfit. Source: AFP-JIJI|
So it is now with a faceless stuffed toy taking their fancy. I am referring to the ubiquitous and asexual Hello Kitty stuffed toy which McDonalds is selling along with its flaccid burgers. Apparently these dolls are themed around fairy tales; so even the creative context of the toys comes from other sources. An excellent example of marketing hype over substance.
Reuters reports that is a black Hello Kitty with a white skeleton and pink bow, based on a German tale called the "Singing Bone" that everyone one in line is fighting over. Hundreds lined up for the midnight launch and before stocks ran out the police were called in to maintain law and order.
Not everyone succeeded in their quest to get their hands on the hello Kitty toy. McDonald's Facebook page recorded their frustrations. One grandfather had hoped to get one for his young granddaughter but failed to do so.
"I am one unhappy grandfather! I had deliberately taken public transport in the haze to buy the 'Ugly Duckling'," he wrote, referring to hazardous levels of smog from Indonesian forest fires that recently wreathed Singapore before scattering.
"I tried 3 outlets without success."
While this speaks volumes of the devotion of a grandparent, why anyone would risk permanent lung damage for the sake of a plush toy is beyond me.
Surely Singaporean toy manufacturers can come up with a local competitor that is more appropriate? I have in mind the 'Hello Haze Doll" based on Indonesian fairy tales of regional cooperation.
Just think of the toy accessories: the miniature face mask, the plastic portable respirator, a small phrase book of bahasa Indonesia excuses - the list of possibilities is endless.
Maybe readers can suggest the names for these dolls? Let me start the ball rolling.
First off the assembly line would be the "Wheezing Wilma" doll, a consumptive toy with a mechanical mechanism that emits a repetitive coughing sound.
Send me your ideas for this unique range of plush toys - I think we are on to a winner!