Production Notes: The First Line of Defense in the Toy Industry

Josh Argyle, staff


Toys aren’t released to the public without being first run through a gauntlet of tests. Safety, durability, and fun value are some of the most common tests. However, first they must come under the scrutiny of the toy company’s production notes. Here are some of our favorites throughout the years.








He-Man Notes 1983

We love the idea. This is going to be a huge seller. Kids need a new superhero type and we think this is it. However, we do have a couple of notes. One, where are his pants? Two, where is his shirt? Three, why do his nipples seem to be a prominent feature in his design? We love this toy although it seems quite homoerotic. Please change the name of his castle from castle Great Head to Grey Skull and please change the name of his villain from Deep Bone to Skeletor. Have it on my desk by Monday.


Skipper (Barbie’s baby sister) Notes 1988

We are very excited with this toy. Finally an addition to out Barbie family. However, we are a little apprehensive. If Skipper is Barbie’s baby sister then where is her Mom? Where is her Dad? Did they die? Is Barbie like Batman? Things could get real dark. Also, is Barbie taking care or her? She is already a Doctor, Firefighter, Pilot, Vet, Teacher, and an Astronaut. Who is going to take care of her? Is the Barbie home a broken home? Have it on my desk by Monday.


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Notes 1989

Stop drilling you’ve hit oil! We absolutely love this toy line. Everything about it is fantastic. Well almost everything. Instead of the Turtles drinking a glass of whiskey before they fight the bad guys how about they eat a pizza instead? Also, instead of yelling, “The Holocaust never happened” before a fight, what about yelling, “Turtle Power”? Either way, have it on my desk by Monday.

Bratz Dolls Notes 2001

We love this toy! Finally, a doll to knock Barbie off of her smug pedestal. We only have a couple of notes. Is there a way we could make them look less like runways who strip down by the Waffle House? Also, my wife said they look very “HPVy.” I’m not sure what that means, but it doesn’t sound good. Have them on my desk by Monday.

Hulk Smash: Hulk Hands Notes 2008

This toy is gonna be huge! Huge movie tie-in opportunities! There is only one issue. We are in litigation with an adult toy company over the tag line for the toy. The current tag line, “A fist full of fun,” looks like it is a no-go. One of out interns has suggested the tagline, “Get a friend, it’s fisting time.” Mull it over and have it on my desk by Monday.

About Josh Argyle

Josh Argyle is a Stand-up comedian and writer. He is the San Francisco bureau chief of Savage Henry Independent Times and contributing writer. He is a co-producer of the S.H.I.Ts and giggles comedy festival in Arcata California. You can check out Joshs website for videos and show dates. Are you still reading this? Jesus we are in a recession, go out and invent some shit.

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