Sunday, April 18, 2021

Mr. Potato Head to Relaunch as Gender-Neutral Toy

*Hasbro is giving Mr. Potato Head a gender makeover. 

In an effort to “promote gender equality and inclusion,’’ the company said the beloved toy will be replaced with a gender-neutral Potato Head this year, the Associated Press reports. 

“Hasbro is making sure all feel welcome in the Potato Head world by officially dropping the Mr. from the Mr. Potato Head brand name and logo to promote gender equality and inclusion,” the company said in a statement on Thursday. The toy first arrived on store shelves in 1952.

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The company followed up with a statement on Twitter noting that the characters would retain their Mr. and Mrs. titles.

“Hold that Tot — your main spud, MR. POTATO HEAD isn’t going anywhere!” the company said. “While it was announced today that the POTATO HEAD brand name & logo are dropping the ‘MR.’ I yam proud to confirm that MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD aren’t going anywhere and will remain MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD.”

Per the New York Times, Hasbro will introduce its new “Potato Family Pack” that will encourage children to “create your Potato Head family.” The pack will come with two large potato bodies, one small potato body and 42 accessories, according to the report.

The change has been welcomed by many liberals and the cancel culture movement, but some conservatives are not feeling it, as many are expressing outrage on social media. 

Meanwhile, LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD has praised the name change.

“Hasbro is helping kids to simply see toys as toys, which encourages them to be their authentic selves outside of the pressures of traditional gender norms,” said chief communications officer Rich Ferraro

News of the toy’s gender flip comes as the House on Thursday passed the Equality Act that would prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ Americans.

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including Emmys.com. She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.

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