For many people with disabilities a sigh of relief is heard when the news about Hasbro’s agreement to discontinue marketing their Kmart exclusive toys called, “Super Deformed Heroes”.
“How can disabled people ever feel acceptance in a country where toys are using ‘deformed’ as a marketing concept?” said John Newberg from New York.
The concept originated in Japan. Our readers didn’t have a problem with the unique shape of the Star Wars figurines.
“They are really cute and I would buy them,” said Susie Hawn from Washington, “I don’t feel comfortable purchasing a product using words that convey a negative connection to people with disabilities.”
“I can’t believe these Super Deformed Heroes lasted this long without a single outcry. These toys have been out for an extremely long time.
Not one word has been spoken. I doubt anything will be resolved,” stated Gavin Mundy from Texas.
Many people living with achondroplasia, a type of dwarfism, feel offended by all of the companies involved in the toy from the manufacturing to the marketing and distribution of the product. Sears owns Kmart, the retail store marketing the toy as an exclusive. Sears and Kmart were both contacted by Audacitymagazine.com and neither company replied.
However, Gail Carvelli, an official spokesperson for Hasbro, quickly and amicably responded to our requests and questions.
Fortunately, the circumstances will change.
www.audacitymagazine.com received this statement from Hasbro today.
While we can’t make any changes to the product that is already selling at retail -we have been able to make packaging changes on all “Star Wars Super Deformed” products that have not yet been shipped from our factory. Therefore, the next wave of product that will reach store shelves in the fall will not have any mention of the words “super deformed,” nor will we use this terminology going forward in any future product.
As you know, we would never want to offend any individual or group, rather, the line of products we have produced comes from a genre that has been quite popular with collectors in Japan and here for many years including in 2002. Unfortunately we did not hear from groups like you the first time this product went on sale or we would have been able to understand the situation and make changes then.
Again we thank you for bringing this to our attention and we are glad we are able to make some positive changes.
We hope that Hasbro keeps their word. We would like to thank everyone for keeping us informed about the news that interests you.
As of 2014, there are still Super Deformed Heroes for the kids. What’s your point of view on this?