?Naming a toy can be a tricky business. Toy companies want something cool-sounding, and unique enough for kids to remember. They certainly don’t want to name their toys something that kids will make fun of.
That distinction seems entirely lost on the companies behind the toys on today’s list. Sometimes this happens because the toy was made in a simpler, more naive time. Sometimes, the marketing people are just dumb as rocks. The result is 10 toys with names that would make any self-respecting 8-year-old laugh
out loud (and adults with the maturity of 8-year-olds, too).
10) Monster in My Pocket
?Probably the most popular and well-known toy on this list, Monster in My Pocket also had a certain obvious double entendre that was not lost on the adolescent kids who collected them. The brand’s use of the singular “monster” only encouraged the joke.
9) Spongebob Squarepants Bikini Bottom Groom & Go
?You’re never too young to learn about bikini waxing. You want a lightning bolt or Brazilian, kiddo?
8) Smurf Punch Balls
?[WHUMP!] “AUGH!! Why, Papa Smurf, why?!” [WHUMP!]
?Seriously, no one in the company’s legal department caught this one?
The Ding-A-Lings were robot toys made in the 1960s. They were actually kind of neat, but there was definitely some oddness. For instance, you’ll notice that the Ding-a-Ling spy keeps his hidden camera in his crotch. And then there’s the whole “King Ding” thing with the “control lever.”
Okay, so this ad is all too aware of the joke. Made by Mego in the 1970s, an audience of toy and game store buyers were allegedly stunned into silence at its first screening. We’re not sure whether this ad actually aired on television back in the ’70s, but it would never fly now.
3) Belly Bongo
What does this thing even do? There’s some suggestion that it’s supposed to be some sort of drum, but all I see is people writhing with a cutting board and a ball on a string hanging over their junk.
Anyway, it’s on this list because “belly bongo” sounds like a tropical euphemism for sexual intercourse.
The Balzac was basically a balloon with a cloth coating. The idea was you put air and water into it and the water would slosh around when thrown, making it whip around in odd ways. It might have been a pretty neat toy, but what made it memorable was the name.
Maybe it was the last name of the company’s founder. Maybe the designers were big fans of the famous French novelist and playwright. But look: you cannot name a toy aimed at middle-school kids — particularly boys — something like “Balzac.” It’s just not going to go well. Though a lot of kids kind of did want a Balzac, if only because the name was so damned funny.
The early ’90s rap is the icing on the cake. The best part of the ad: “Us two Balzacs are where it’s at!” Cue the totally missed high-five.
1) Pull-Along Cock & Pull-Along Pussy
Another word for chicken is cock. Another word for cat is pussy. Another word for owl is hooter (but that’s neither here nor there).
The above toys exist. If you buy one for a child and get pulled over on the way to their birthday party, do not say to the officer, “Sorry sir, I was in a hurry to get this cock to a four-year-old.” That story ends with prison molestation.