Wednesday, October 17th, 2007
Fantanimals: The Mr. Potato Head of Plush
Fantanimals by Fanny’s Play House are like Mr. Potato Head, but plush instead of plastic, lemons and bowling pins instead of potatoes, and bonded with Velcro instead of peg holes. Got all that?
They’re sold in two 8-inch-tall body versions — a lemon-colored pear thingie sometimes called “Mr. Lemonhead” or “Yellow Thing,” and a green bowling pin that is more “parrot shaped” from a side view.
Each Fantanimal comes with 15 appendages that attach anywhere you stick them on the body. Everything is machine washable and intended for ages 2-and-up or 3-and-up, depending on which retailer you believe.
While 15 body parts sounds like a lot, consider that eyes, feet, arms, wings and horns each constitute sets of two.
This could be a hit toy, hotter than Mr. Potato Head (let’s face it, when he switched from being a real potato to a plastic egg, things went downhill). But Fanny’s Play House has misjudged the potato allure.
Yes, kids love attaching body parts, and being able to put them anywhere on the body is a huge improvement, but kids still want to give their toy a funny face, and then another one, and another one. Moving a mouth a little higher and bringing the eyes closer to the nose isn’t the same experience as swapping out funny hats, happy and sad mouths and big and small goofy eyeballs. That said, it still looks like a cool toy and I want one. I mean, my daughter wants one.