We are constantly bombarded with new methods to manage our stress, and the latest has people conflicted.
According to TODAY, “adults now make up 25% of toy consumers.”
Referring to them as “kidults”, TODAY reports that this growing trend is fuelled by a fixation with nostalgia, adding that a “key factor is adults looking for a stress reliever that reminds them of their carefree youth.”
In a clip, TODAY Show host Joe Fryer explains that new data shows that kids 12 and up make up the kidult category, and toy companies are capitalizing on this trend, marketing their toys to millennials and Gen X.
CNBC reports that data from a research group called NPD Group discovered that “people ages 12 and over spend about $9 billion annually on toys ranging from board games to "Star Wars" figurines” and account for “60% of the growth in the industry.”
The lines between kids and adults have been blurred constantly in 2022, with the rise of “family-friendly” drag queen story hours and the inclusion of minors in sexually explicit ad campaigns, so naturally, his trend caused quite a stir on social media.
As Evie Magazine notes, the negative comments on Twitter in response to the TODAY Show’s clip and the lack of likes prove this trend to be “sad and maybe even a little disturbing.”
Although it may seem harmless for adults to play with children’s toys, the normalization of grown-ups purchasing items typically marketed toward minors comes off as creepy, and perhaps speaks to a larger issue in our culture that needs to be addressed where men and women feel the need to behave like children.