Breaking Bad may be a fascinating show, but fans with kids have a bone to pick with the makers of a new line of dolls based on characters from the show. Not only are the dolls being manufactured, they are being sold at Toys R Us stores across the country.
That’s right. Dolls. Complete with a detachable bag of cash and a bag of meth.
Mind you, the Breaking Bad figures packaging clearly states that the items are intended for ages fifteen and older, and they’re only sold in the “adult” action figure area. So clearly there’s no inappropriate message being sent here, from the drug dealer dolls that sit on the shelf next to GI Joe and Super Mario Brothers.
Parents on a Mission
Susan Schrivjer, a mother from Florida, launched a petition on Change.org last week to ask the toy store to stop selling the figures. More than 2200 people signed the petition by Monday morning. Despite being a fan of the show, Schrivjer points out that “anything to do with drugs” should not be welcome in a store with family friendly values like Toys R Us.
Adult novelty stores, fine. Even Barnes and Noble, although that may be pushing the envelope. But a toy store?
Schrivjer appeared on The Today Show this weekend, adding fuel to the fire and gathering even more support. For Toys R Us, this couldn’t have come at a worse time—sales of most traditional toys have been in a slump for a while. Even Mattel’s Christmas sales declined last year, and Barbie sales continue to slip. Toy manufacturers attribute the dip to soaring interest in electronics over traditional toys.
Toy makers’ strange attempt at being progressive, however, clearly does not come with a stamp of parental approval. Appealing to the modern child is great, but promoting drugs is a different story. That’s not progress—it’s a return to barbarism.
The critically acclaimed TV series Breaking Bad ranks among one of the most well-watched television series of all time. The story follows protagonist Walter White, a struggling high school chemistry teacher diagnosed with lung cancer. In order to provide financial security for his family before he dies, he begins producing and selling Crystal Meth.
A fascinating perspective on a protagonist-turned-antagonist, the show—created by Vince Gilligan, a veteran writer known for Hancock and The X-Files—provides the inside skinny on Crystal Meth. While many are concerned that it is merely a marketing campaign for the deadly drug, others are simply drawn to the story of a man struggling to do the right thing.
Regardless of the artistic qualities or moral aspects of the show, it is a fair guess that parents wouldn’t want their children watching a show that glamorizes Crystal Meth, nor would they want them bringing home a doll that symbolizes the industry.
The production of Crystal Meth is a public health issue, as meth labs often lead to fires or explosions that put others at risk. The toxic waste from meth production is also a danger, especially to children, many of whom have died from exposure.
Crystal Meth is one of the most poisonous drugs on the black market. A mere glance at “Before and After” pictures of Meth users reveals the harrowing effects of the drug on the body. Within just a few months or years, an average person can become pock-marked, haggard, and aged beyond their years. Meth Mouth ravages the teeth, causing severe tooth and gum decay. And yet they continue to use, groping desperately like savage zombies, unable to function without it. The vicious grip of addiction is like a vice when it comes to Crystal Meth.