Fast-food franchises have been handing out toys with their kiddie meals since back in the late 1970s. These meals were a massive hit, served in these cute and colorful cardboard boxes with a free toy inside! What kid wouldn't like that?
Kids these days are more technological than ever before, making the toys that come with the meal less popular. Fast food is also eaten much less frequently by families than it was in the past. Perhaps one day there won't be such a thing as meals that include toys?
That might not be as bad as it sounds. As this list will show, there has been some bad toys over the years - toys we don't want anywhere near our children. Some were tacky, some created controversy, there were those that just seemed like a money-grab and others that tried to trick children into coming back and collecting them all.
20 Burger King Grown-Up Toys
It's no surprise that there would be tons of buzz surrounding something like this. Basically, the internet went nuts over a supposed Burger King Valentine's Day promotion aimed at adults. The meal included two burgers, two orders of fries, two beers and an "adult gift." It was all blown out of proportion though - but still not something we'd give our kids.
19 Spider-Man 3
Spider-Man 3 was bad. In fact, the only thing we'd like to see turned into a toy from that film would be an emo Peter Parker figurine that reenacts some of those ridiculous dance moves. That might have turned this collection into one of the best Burger King toys to have ever existed. These toys just don't seem to have a whole lot going for them.
18 Pocahontas Finger Puppets
Who decided finger puppets were the way into children's hearts and minds in the mid-90s? Not only that, but imagine your kid's greasy, ketchup covered fingers being shoved up some puppet. Talk about a bacterial breeding ground. The only good thing about this is that it would be pretty hard to get a kid excited about finger puppets in the first place.
17 Backstreet Boys Cyber Crusaders
Nick Carter of the Backstreet Boys approached Stan Lee about getting his crew transformed into superheroes and running a series of comic books around that concept. Thankfully, they only ran a single issue, but they left behind a veritable treasure trove of painfully cringeworthy merchandise, such as these Burger King exclusive action figures.
Here's another BK toy that's just too weird to be cool. These guys are somewhere between a vaguely threatening manly toughness and a cuddly stuffed toy (did we mention they also talk when you squeeze ‘em!?) and leave us feeling rather bewildered with what, exactly, kids are supposed to be doing with these. Who sleeps with a stuffed Undertaker at night?
15 Simpsons Superheroes
The Simpsons have had a relationship with Burger King nearly as long as the show’s been in existence. But these strangely stubby excuses for toys seem to raise very little interest outside of the most hardcore collectors. The design doesn’t exactly scream “fun," and the awkward trashcan shape doesn't do much for aesthetics.
14 Hourglass Space Sprout
This is obviously a toddler’s toy and seems pretty harmless and entirely unworthy of scrutiny. Right? Wrong! There were several incidents that led to them being recalled. The rattle was fragile, and the beads often spilled out to create a choking hazard. Luckily, Burger King took these little contraptions out of the rotation before they managed to hurt somebody.
13 Twilight Eclipse
Nonsensical books, horrible movies, and toys that aren't really toys. That sums up the Twilight saga rather nicely. Want a better reason why we don't like these "toys"? It's nothing more than a collection of baubles with branding slapped onto them. The operative term in “kids meal” is “kids.” They aren’t “young adult vampire enthusiast luncheons.”
12 Wild Wild West
No one remembers anything about this movie apart from the headache-inducing track Will Smith-produced to accompany it. Who decided the world needed collectibles to commemorate it? There was a big robot spider thing, Salma Hayek was there, wasn't she? And probably some other dudes. These toys do have something in common with the movie though - they were rubbish.
11 Angry Birds
There's so much Angry Birds stuff out there, we're kinda left wondering who buys and collects all of their merch. Any kid picking getting one of these with their meal is more likely to just want to borrow your phone and play the actual game. Or pester you for a more authentic piece of merchandise from your local Wal-Mart.
Beetlejuice is a cult classic, so why would we put it on this list? Well, it just seems to have a certain whiff of "rushed promo material" about it. Sure, it is Beetlejuice, they’re supposed to look weird, but there’s something a bit off when it comes to the artistry here. Especially when spending a few seconds looking at the main man’s face. It's the wrong kind of creepy!
This was just rubbish! Silly trolls with wild, ratty, neon dyed mops sprouting from their heads. What's the point of these things? They really don’t appear to do a whole lot, do they? Burger King even tried to sweeten the deal by tossing in a few sheets of stickers to combat the absolute lack of interactivity. Thanks, but no thanks.
8 Fantastic 4: Rise Of The Silver Surfer
For some reason, the Fantastic Four's Hollywood exploits always seem to end in disaster. Clearly, that goes for their toys as well. Why do they have those weird, oversized, deformed hands? Why does the Silver Surfer look like he's melting? Perhaps they were going for more of a comic book style, but it just ended up looking strange.
Teletubbies is one of the worst things that's ever happened! These useless children's dolls certainly didn't provide anyone with a big enough incentive to go out of their way and get a kids' meal at BK. This was just a shameless money grab by them, but we're not falling for it!
The Pokémon figures themselves were actually pretty cool. So why wouldn't we want our kids to have these? Well, they were recalled after a tragic incident. The “Pokéball” container, once opened, each half could easily fit over a child’s face - leading to a tragic accident. Burger King recalled millions of these following the occurrence, even offering a small order of fries in exchange for their return.
5 Shrek 2
Like everyone else, Burger King jumped on the Shrek craze. After all, they had "toys" for the first movie back in 2001. However, these new toys were bad. See that scary Donkey head? That’s a clock. You have to pull his mouth open to see the time. Then there is the book to store perhaps a penny or rock in? Why on earth would we want our children to have this?
4 The Land Before Time
Sure, Littlefoot, Ducky and the gang had a place in the hearts of many a 90’s kid. Who doesn't like cute dinosaurs, right? These toys were not exactly made to last though. Perhaps that's why they fetch around 50 bucks these days? Trying to wind them up, they'll most likely disintegrate in your hands.
As if the real thing wasn’t enough, BK started chucking these cheap imitation Furbies out with every kid’s meal to cash in on the craze while it was still hot. They missed the whole “fur” part of the Furby, opting for a less than cuddly hard plastic format, and did very little to emulate the behaviors of the original. This toy went straight in the trash!
2 Mr. Potato Head
It's just too weird to eat fries while Mr. Potato Head is looking at us with a big goofy smile on his face. It's downright morbid! While Mr. Potato Head technically is a great toy; You could put his ears in the wrong place, turn his eyeballs upside down, whatever weirdness struck your fancy. But these didn’t touch the original toy.
1 Rugrats Treehouse Collection
Knowing that Nickelodeon has nurtured a relationship with children’s fast food for decades, it's hardly surprising to see the Rugrats on the children's menu. The complaint with this bunch is that this set practically begged you to complete it. It just doesn’t look right until assembled. And the sheer randomness associated with getting the toy you wanted could get both frustrating and pricey.