Aaron Paul of ‘Breaking Bad’ calls out toy store hypocrisy

While I’ve always loved Aaron Paul, I got giddy when I read his angry Tweet after Toys R Us got rid of its “Breaking Bad” action figures.

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Paul Tweets:

Wait, so @ToysRUs pulled all of the Breaking Bad figures from their shelves and still sells Barbie? Hmmmm…I wonder what is more damaging


Do I think meth dealers should be sold in a toy store? No. But there are so many things I think shouldn’t be in toy stores like Monster High dolls and gender segregated LEGO sets where girls are sold dumbed down structures. I find it kind of amusing when people who never cared about the horribly sexist and racist stuff we market to little kids every single day, suddenly freak out, calling one item in the store dangerous. Their indignation reminds me of when Eminem got popular and middle aged men were so offended by his misogynistic lyrics. Had these newfound feminists ever listened to the Rolling Stones or Led Zeppelin?

Shopping in Walgreens the other day, I saw the action figure Michonne from “Walking Dead” in the toy aisle. I’m always on the lookout for female action figures and my husband is a huge fan of the show, so I bought Michonne for him and blogged about my purchase:

You probably know how rare it is to find a female action figure, not to mention a non-white female action figure, without her breasts popping out of her shirt, wearing pants even, just sitting there on a shelf in a store and not hiding out on some obscure internet site. Let’s just say she’s far rarer than the unicorn in fantasy figure world…Though, in theory, I’d rather my kids play with Michonne than Barbie, I wasn’t sure if I planned on letting them near her, when she comes with exotic weapons and also a couple severed heads. But when my daughter heard my husband’s joyful cry after he saw the package, I thought all was lost. My concern turned out to be unfounded. Not only did he tell her he’s not sharing, but he’s not even taking her out of the package. He’s worse than the evil dad in “The Lego Movie,” pre-epiphany.



Back again in Walgreens last week, I spotted the action figure of Daenerys Targaryen from “Game of Thrones” in the toy aisle, another show my husband watches.


Though I liked GoT in many ways, it has so much rape, I couldn’t stick with it. When I saw Daenerys at Walgreens, I thought: Who are they marketing to? Surely kids don’t watch GoT? Do other women buy for these their husbands besides me? For themselves? (please, let me know) I have a feeling this “Game of Thrones” heroine will be in my house soon. I’ll buy her for my husband. If he releases her from the package, and the kids come across her, I will let them play with her, in spite of the rape fest of a show. I love the dragon on perched on her arm, and I think my children would use Daenerys to make up some incredible stories. Fingers crossed my husband buys me Jesse (I watched every episode of “Breaking Bad” cringing and biting my nails.) That is, if he can find a store that will sell the toy.


5 thoughts on “Aaron Paul of ‘Breaking Bad’ calls out toy store hypocrisy

  1. Now, my parents are pretty lax about boundaries when it comes to television for me. My daily consumption mostly involves dark adult dramas, such as Breaking Bad. Especially Breaking Bad. While the show has some extremely child-inappropriate content, my arguement for shows like that for kids is simple. The conversations that can happen while watching. Shows like the one I mentioned are not only stables in modern and past pop culture, but they raise deeper questions about morality that I personally find very beneficial. I am only eleven. That’s nowhere near the target age. But the time spend with my forty-something parents inrich the experience. I admire people such as yourself, who are able to stand up against norms.
    Thank you, now I’m going to go watch The Simpsons, partly because my mind hurts from trying to sound intelligent. 🙂
    -Nikki Roseworth

  2. Ad Daenerys:
    From what I gather from quotes from the books Daenerys was sold by her brother to some generic horse lord character (“Khal Drogo”) and his people. The only positive point about Khal Drogo is, that he doesn’t “share” Daenerys with the others in his camp.
    He rapes her so often that at some point she “likes it”. Which is an unrealistic male erotic fantasy and basically the author spitting in the face of all people who had to endure sexual abuse by the same person over a longer period of time.
    Among other things like the author apparently not understanding how 3rd person limited works correctly this is the main reason why I won’t read the books and won’t watch the show.

    • The HBO version of Daenerys and Drogo’s first encounter is rape. In the book it is very different. He asks her permission each step of the way and she gives consent. HBO decided to turn this into a rape scene, and it really bothers me. For me, that wedding night was key for understanding her relationship to Drago. The mother of dragons did not fall in love with her rapist!

  3. I’m definitely a bit of a collector myself when it comes to figures of characters from my favorite games, movies, TV shows, etc. And yes, like what Wendy said, figures from more “mature” genre’s of entertainment like Game of Thrones are made for adult collectors, not children. Here in Canada, female collectors like my sister and I don’t seem to be uncommon, so figures like Deanerys are on the shelves for women as much as men, as far as I know.

  4. There are a lot of toys that are sold for the “adult collector” — not intended for kids, the $25 DC Collectibles and Marvel Selects in particular. The GoT, BB, and WD figures are also really not intended to be played with by kids. Yes, they’re toys, yes I advocate taking them out of the packages (I take mine out), but a lot of them are too delicately sculpted with tiny parts that aren’t suitable for kids. (And the plastic tends to be on the hard/brittle side, making them very kid-UNfriendly.)

    I recently had the experience in a TRU buying three female action figures with my husband standing behind me. The (male) clerk asked if they were for him, nodding at my husband. I shook my head and said no, they were MINE. He was astonished and said he’d worked in stores all over the country and had never met a female collector. Which can’t be true — maybe he just didn’t know they were collectors, but I know I am not the only one, though I admit I’ve never met another one in person (that I know of).

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