The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood discovered what may be the worst new toy of the year: The Real Tooth Fairies, an "immersive" Tooth Fairy experience that seeks to turn the simple act of leaving a tooth under one's pillow into a world full of licensed products available for purchase!
To fully enjoy trading a tooth for money, your daughter will require a special treasure chest, outfit, purse, and book set!
Losing a tooth is not a gender-neutral activity. The Real Tooth Fairies company has separate websites for boys and girls. Here is the girl version:
And here is the totally badass boy version:
So much is unnecessary here: The time traveling, the spelling of "elf" with two Fs, the transformation of the Tooth Fairy into--depending on your gender--a gaggle of babes in heels or a chipper boy band.
The Campaign for Commercial Free Childhood found and posted a marketing video the Real Tooth Fairies company made for investors that noted the giant market potential of turning the beloved childhood icon into a line toys and outfits. I watched the video last week but, unfortunately, the video is no longer available online "due to a copyright claim from the 'Royal Council of the Real Fairyland.'"
Oh shit, you know you're in trouble when you piss off the Royal Council of the Real Fairyland.
Anyway, there is a transcript of the marketing video. Here's a segment:
Can you believe that a childhood character known by millions worldwide has not yet been licensed? Every night, millions of children around the world put a lost tooth under their pillow and wait for the Tooth Fairy to come.
Yes-s-s! It's another letter from my Real Tooth Fairy! … Wait a minute. I need to go show my mom. MOM!
What if this moment of real-life magic that kids and parents already buy into could be captured into a Tooth Fairy brand that girls love?
[captioned: Executive VP, Disney Interactive, 1991 – 2011, Took Disney Online to 36 Million Uniques; Acquired Club Penguin $700 million; Built successful Disney Fairies Site]
This is a huge, huge property and a huge character franchise, and the genius of it is no one's really tapped into it the way The Real Tooth Fairies has. We could come up with a list of time-tested characters, from Spiderman to Mickey Mouse to Tinkerbell to Spongebob, and I believe the tooth fairy, herself, as a character, literally stands at the same level of these kind of globally-recognizable characters.
In addition to the obvious notion that commercializing every aspect of a childhood promotes an unhealthy consumerism, the makeover of the vaguely defined Tooth Fairy into a group of skinny, sexy fairies is in line with other depressing toys aimed at girls. In recent years, Strawberry Shortcake and the Care Bears have both been revamped to become skinnier and more sensual.
The people behind the Real Tooth Fairies had better start saving the dimes under their kids' pillows--hopefully no one with any sense will invest in this scheme.