Monday June 26th 2017

Search Store

Random Products

17" Mega Electroplasma Lava Lamp

17
$59.99
The 17" Mega Electroplasma Lava Lamp replaces slow-moving wax "lava" with real, live arcs of electricity to set the ...

The Hangover Baby Carlos Pint Glass from Warner Bros.

The Hangover Baby Carlos Pint Glass from Warner Bros.
$7.99
Get ready for some serious hijinks with the gang from The Hangover with this cool pint glass! This 16 oz. ...

5 Axis Adjustable Tablet Stand

5 Axis Adjustable Tablet Stand
$189.99
Your tablet is a serious device that brings the world to your fingertips. But you can't experience its full ...

Random Products

The Hangover Baby Carlos Pint Glass from Warner Bros.

The Hangover Baby Carlos Pint Glass from Warner Bros.
$7.99
Get ready for some serious hijinks with the gang from The Hangover with this cool pint glass! This 16 oz. ...

17" Mega Electroplasma Lava Lamp

17
$59.99
The 17" Mega Electroplasma Lava Lamp replaces slow-moving wax "lava" with real, live arcs of electricity to set the ...

5 Axis Adjustable Tablet Stand

5 Axis Adjustable Tablet Stand
$189.99
Your tablet is a serious device that brings the world to your fingertips. But you can't experience its full ...

Charles Cheese, geared to adults

Facebook Twitter Reddit Digg Pinterest Linkedin Tumblr Stumbleupon Delicious Plusone Email

So the Federal Trade Commission issued a subpoena last week to Chuck E. Cheese because it says the restaurant chain markets its product to kids.

I thought adults were naturally drawn to noisy restaurants filled with screaming hyperactive children; child-friendly arcade games and flashy lights; some of the worst pizza you wish you hadn’t eaten and the always alarmingly high potential for a public vomit sighting. The restaurant’s logo is a cartoon mouse and it’s slogan is “Where A Kid Can Be A Kid.” Adults are prone to hanging at restaurants that double as the perfect place to hold a birthday party for large groups of children, 13 and under. I forgot the costumed mouse mascot running around no doubt humiliating whoever’s inside — you know, that guy doesn’t tell his friends where he works?

Other than the games and flashy lights, which is federally-allowable junior varsity Vegas, I don’t understand the kid appeal.

In certain sections of the gaming area at a Chuck E. Cheese, an adult can closes his or her eyes and imagine for a moment that they were standing inside a casino. While possible, that moment is usually short-lived. It’s much easier at Dave and Buster’s, where you swear you’re at the MGM Grand and you wonder how all these kids got there. Coupons instead of chips and no matter what prize you take home, the house always wins.

Sure there’s the occasional violence at Chuck E. Cheese (here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here) but that only (also here and here) makes it seem more like Vegas. A parent may use the lure of a potential police situation as a way to feel like he was in the game — on the front lines. Violence at Chuck E. Cheese gives it a level of street cred around the water cooler on Mondays.


“You went to Chuck E. Cheese??? Wow! Nice.”

But this subpoena is strictly about the marketing of food. All that other stuff is fine. What in the menu and marketing are they doing to lure all those kids?? Roman Polanski would like to know.

Yes, it’s entirely possible that Chuck E. Cheese sets its laser of appeal to children, same as the Spearmint Rhino attempts to attract men who like lap dances and have money. A ranker, darker strip club somewhere off the beaten path might have more dirty pick-up trucks in the parking lot than pimped out BMWs — the obvious question is why isn’t the FTC stepping in to investigate what business practices are being employed to attract these high rollers to the Rhino and not the lesser club? This goes on the same level of “need to know.”

And shouldn’t the FTC be more concerned with senior citizens? Who exactly is Sally Field pitching Boniva too? Impressionable children worried about their bone density? People in their later years are just as susceptible to advertising as children but are much more dangerous. Last I checked, the main audience Chuck E. Cheese allegedly appeals to can’t drive or own a handgun. They need a parent or grandparent to tell them no. A grandparent is more likely to have an accident, forget something (a child) and is less apt to give a shit. Senior citizens other than Sally Field — who is pumped up on once-monthly Boniva, which works with your body to help stop and reverse bone loss — may have lost 2 or more inches in height. They’re angry, their viewpoint behind the wheel is lower than when they were in their driving prime and it’s always possible they’re packing heat.

This all spells a level of trouble that the FTC clearly is intent on overlooking.

>> Follow: @SoapyJohnson on Twitter.

>> Comment: Place it on Lucky Dan on Facebook.

© 2010 – 2013, Soapy Johnson. All rights reserved.

Facebook Twitter Reddit Digg Pinterest Linkedin Tumblr Stumbleupon Delicious Plusone Email