Mr Potato Head’s gender change mocked
Toy giant Hasbro have revealed that one of Toy Story's best-loved characters, Mr Potato Head, is no longer a male.
The company that makes the popular plastic toy announced overnight it was dropping the honorifics from the spud's name - making him gender neutral - "to promote gender equality and inclusion".
From later this year, the toy launched almost 70 years ago, will be known simply as "Potato Head."
The toy was brought to life alongside Mrs Potato Head in the Toy Story film franchise, and would often angrily demand other characters not forget his title.
"That's Mr Potato Head to you, you back-stabbing murderer," the plastic spud memorably said to Woody, after the cowboy inadvertently knocked Buzz Lightyear out of a bedroom window.
However, Hasbro believes the toy needs to move with the times.
"Hasbro today announced the iconic brand will be reimagined for the modern consumer," read a statement on the manufacturer's website.
The rebranded toy, in which children add facial characteristics and clothes to the body of a plastic spud, will hit shelves later this year
It will allow kids "to imagine and create their own Potato Head family," said Hasbro.
"The way the brand currently exists, with the "Mr" and "Mrs", is limiting when it comes to both gender identity and family structure," Hasbro general manager Kimberly Boyd told business magazine Fast Company.
"Culture has evolved," she added.
However, the change has been ruthlessly ridiculed by many on social media.
Ah yes, Mr. Potato Head. The man who taught me about gender. Everything I know about my gender came to me the old fashioned way as it did for all the other girls in the neighborhood for generations before and hence and as is rightly so -- directly from Mr. Potato Head.— Nellie Bowles (@NellieBowles) February 25, 2021
Now any child, of any gender, can look at a Potato Head and dream of growing up to be a plastic spheroid with interchangeable parts.— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) February 25, 2021
I told my 7-year-old daughter that Mr. Potato Head is gender neutral now and she smiled and said, "This is the greatest day of my life. Finally I can be at peace." We hugged and I started sobbing. It was so beautiful.— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) February 25, 2021
Mr Potato Head first went on sale in 1952. On the back of its success, Mrs Potato Head was launched the following year, along with traditional feminised accessories.
The move follows other updates to classic brands, including Barbie, who was initially known for being tall, white and blonde but now comes in a range of ethnicities and body shapes.
In 2019, global toy giant Mattel released a line of gender-neutral dolls.
Originally published as Mr Potato Head's gender change mocked