You have to feel bad for Hasbro: Transformers: The Last Knight didn’t do as well as expected at the box office, the company’s profits as well as its stock have taken a hit due in no small part to the Toys R Us bankruptcy, and the next HasCon–which is a trade show that is open to the public and not an actual convention–won’t be on the radar for the next couple of years.
Yeah, things aren’t so great right now. But then, this had to happen, which only adds to the egg on Hasbro’s face.
Right now, one of the current Transformer lines–known as Power of the Primes–has been making its way to shelves and pegs in toy departments across America. This is a good thing, right?
Well, it should have been. Then things like this happen. Yes, you are reading that correctly: someone slipped “MAGA” in Cybertronian glyphs on a Jazz figure.
I can’t facepalm hard enough.
There is so much wrong with this. Dear Primus, there is so much wrong here. The message in question is on a white race car, that was originally voiced by a black man. As for the message itself, why would the Autobots give half a scrap in making America great? They aren’t American citizens that I know of; instead, these are giant alien robots. Who in their right mind thought this was such a great idea, anyway? Here’s what Hasbro had to say about the entire thing:
It was brought to our attention that a graphic appears on one of our Transformers figures that, when translated from Cybertonian letters to English, spells out MAGA. We investigated the issue, and discovered that one of our vendors inserted this as part of the design without authorization. We are addressing this with the vendor.
We do not intend for our products to carry political messages, and apologize to anyone who was offended by this message.
That’s all well and good, but you seriously need to fire the hell out of this vendor. This guy shouldn’t get a job at Hasbro cleaning the damned toilets, let alone doing any freelance work. Seriously. He needs to be outed and fired. His name should be made public so that other toy companies won’t contact him to contract him out for any freelance work. He needs to be held accountable in every way possible. Make his stupid backside unemployable.
It goes without saying that I am livid. This wasn’t cute. This wasn’t funny. This. NEVER. Should. Have. Happened.
It doesn’t matter that this was probably done a year ago, when the election was happening. It shouldn’t have happened. This should have been caught. Now, I get that the higher-ups probably don’t have the world’s greatest grip on ancient Cybertronian. However, translation keys exist. There are fans out there who could do that sort of thing for free, Hasbro. They’d be happy to do it; you wouldn’t have to pay them, either. In most cases, a fan having the chance to get a look at a new figure before everyone else would be more than payment enough. But there were ways to prevent this well before the figure was produced and shipped to stores. Somebody somewhere failed and failed miserably at quality control. And don’t even get me started on the asshat who thought that this would be funny. Keep your damned politics out of my toy collections; the last time we mixed shit like that was in the 1980s when we had the Satanic Panic.
There’s an Allspark thread about this lovely fiasco as well. If you want to read up on this disaster over there, go right ahead. Me, I gotta go binge a few dozen cute kitten videos. Because if I don’t, I’ll go into a blind rage over here.