Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Happy Meals should not be PG-13

Because I am lazy, and love the french fries, my family had McD's for lunch today. The terrors got Happy Meals, which as we all know, include a wonderful cheap plastic toy, invariably tied to a current movie. Usually, I don't mind. I figure the damn things never make it out of the backseat of the car, and generally they are harmless. My kids haven't seen the movies the toys come from, but they don't know they are being deprived.
Today's toy was a plastic skull, the movie of the week being "Pirates of the Caribbean".
Let's ignore the fact that I was feeding my children grease and salt for lunch. Never mind that they can recognize a fast food joint from a mere corner of the sign. For now, I want to focus on the toy.
"Pirates" is rated PG-13. I haven't seen many 13 year olds eating Happy Meals lately. So the assumption is that the younger crowd would know about the movie, be able to identify the toys as being derived from the movie, and would either beg for a Happy Meal in order to have a skull, or would beg to see the movie after chowing down the salt/grease combo.
Why sell a PG-13 movie to small children? Am I the only one who thinks kids don't need to see Harry, Gollum, or the Mummy? Not only do I think they don't NEED to see it, I don't think they SHOULD see it.
The skulls were left at McD's today. Girl Terror asked why, and when we explained to her that those particular toys were meant for older kids, and weren't something we wanted to take home, she was fine with it.
I know I'm going to get some grief from other parents, but for now I would like to maintain the illusion of innocence.


Sarah said...

totally agree!!!!!!!

Karyn said...

I agree! I was so disappointed when they stopped the Cars toys in favour of the Pirates toys. My kids (2 and 4) saw the Cars movie and my son, well, he loves anything with wheels. The toys were totally appropriate. But skulls? Umm, no thanks.

Karyn said...

Ummm, not that we eat McD's all of the time or anything....;)

Northern_Girl said...

I hate those damn toys. All of them. Cross marketing, up-selling SOBs.

Sorry - I haven't had my daily allotment of diet coke yet.

Mary P. said...

You'll get no disagreement from me!

First thing I do with a new family is start training the parents. "This toy can stay, that one can't." No guns, no violence, no PG-13.

They get to be teens soon enough. There is no rush. Let them be little for as long as they can.

Innocence is a wonderful thing!

OldHorsetailSnake said...

But, but, if you let 'em see these things now you will never have to have the birds and bees talk. Won't that be fun? No, huh....

Rootietoot said...

I'm with you there. Taco Bell has pretty cool toys, sometimes they're even kind of educational. It's hard trying to maintain your kids innocence, especially when he has 3 teenage brothers.

sky said...

I am guilty of ordering Happy Meals for me...and save the toys for my nephews, however I agree...Pirates of the Carribean is not a kids movie and most of the kids eating happy meals are little ones, not 13 year then they are eating regular burgers...what really gets me is the gender biasing they the toy for a boy or a girl. They don't always have that choice but when they do, you can bet the boy's toy has a gun of sorts and the girls toy is a doll. boooo!