Tom Slater

Lego, George Floyd and the politics of playtime

Lego, George Floyd and the politics of playtime

Time was that toys would be recalled, removed from sale or quietly had their advertising pulled if they were covered in lead paint, defective, or in the case of Disney’s hilariously misjudged 1999 ‘Rad Repeatin’ Tarzan’ doll, appeared to be masturbating. Today all it takes is for them to be potentially perceived by someone, somewhere, as insensitive. The Culture War has so seeped into every corner of modern life that Lego has actually pulled marketing of its police and White House toys – presumably in an effort not to stoke more civil unrest – in the wake of George Floyd’s death. Amid the protests and riots that continue to roil the United States, sparked by the brutal killing of Floyd and inflamed by president Trump’s authoritarian response, an email was reportedly sent on behalf of the Lego Group to marketers, requesting the immediate removal of marketing for more than 30 products.

Tom Slater

Lego, George Floyd and the politics of playtime

Lego, George Floyd and the politics of playtime

Time was that toys would be recalled, removed from sale or quietly had their advertising pulled if they were covered in lead paint, defective, or in the case of Disney’s hilariously misjudged 1999 ‘Rad Repeatin’ Tarzan’ doll, appeared to be masturbating. Today all it takes is for them to be potentially perceived by someone, somewhere, as insensitive. The Culture War has so seeped into every corner of modern life that Lego has actually pulled marketing of its police and White House toys – presumably in an effort not to stoke more civil unrest – in the wake of George Floyd’s death. Amid the protests and riots that continue to roil the United States, sparked by the brutal killing of Floyd and inflamed by president Trump’s authoritarian response, an email was reportedly sent on behalf of the Lego Group to marketers, requesting the immediate removal of marketing for more than 30 products.

Podcasts

More podcasts

Magazine

The Critics

The good, the bad and the ugly in books, exhibitions, cinema, TV, dance, music, podcasts and theatre.

Cartoons