Poe’s Point > Toy packaging comes under fire from local TV news guy

Mrs. Ghostal-to-Be and I are often amused by the promo spots for Jon Keller, a Boston TV news personality. He’s sort of a cross between John Stossel and a daytime talk show host; every promo follows a formula whereby something seemingly positive is revealed to possibly be negative. “Doctors say regular exercise is good for you. But some people say that may not be true–find out why at 11!”


Now Keller has turned the burning focus of his scrutiny upon a true scourge of the modern world: toy packaging. In this special report, Keller argues that when it comes to toy shopping for Christmas, “the cost and the crowds are nothing compared with the agony of getting the darn things open.” He’s even created an online petition telling toy companies “Our children want to be able to play with the toys they open Christmas morning–or for Hanukkah or their birthday–without watching their parents fight, fumble, cut themselves, and curse at the packaging.”

My parents were usually able to do all that independent of any toy packaging in the vicinity (especially Mumma Ghostal–she has the vocabulary of a drunken sailor). But I have to admit, toy packaging is a big pain in the ass these days. I’ve cut myself more than once on clamshell cases.

And yet, I do think clamshells make for the best collector’s packaging. Many collectors keep their toys in the package, and plastic clamshells don’t wear the way cardboard boxes and backing cards do. I suspect the rise of clamshell packaging has much to do with the rise of toy collecting as an adult hobby. As someone who opens all of his toys, I’m not too fond of having to tear my way into clamshells, but frankly, I find the innumerable wire twist-ties far more irritating than getting the package open.

So will you sign the petition? Clamshells–yea or nay?


DC Universe Classics – what do you think?


Space Ghost: Speaker to Speaker


  1. Poe

    Having once sliced my finger open on a box cutter while cutting some flash from a Stikfas kit, I can say that X-Acto knives and their ilk are dangerous in the wrong hands.

    The said, a tool designed specifically for opening clamshells does seem to indicate a problem in the industry.

  2. PrfktTear

    As much of a pain as they are, I have to agree that clamshells do make for better packaging, having to resort to my tool box to get them open is another.

    I do really hate the twisty ties more than the packaging itself. Again, I use a pair of wire cutters for that. The fact that there is a market for packaging openers is beyond me, but I suppose for some people its safer than an Exacto knife!

  3. Mumma Ghostal

    Ah…figure packaging! It's the annoyance equivalent to all of those little tiny stickers back when I was a kid! Although didn't one of your Toyfare guests describe how exciting it was getting a wrapped package knowing by the its shape that it was an action figure? I seem to remember a young ( and not so young ) Poe holding the present wondering WHICH guy was in there! However, more than once, Mumma Ghostal took a sharp knife to the package and twist ties and tried to cut her way to the prize, only to nick it…but just a little! I vote to keep it for toys ( I say this after I realized last night that I STILL have not mastered the art of wrapping one of those suckers!), but banish it for absolutely everything else.

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