CARU Finds Advertising For Bandai’s “Megazord” Does Not Mislead Children

New York – August 11, 2011 – The Children’s Advertising Review Unit of the Council of Better Business Bureaus has determined that advertising for the Samurai Megazord, advertised by Bandai America Incorporated, did not mislead children about the product’s performance.

Broadcast advertising for the product came to the attention of CARU, the children’s advertising industry’s self-regulatory forum, through CARU’s monitoring of advertising directed to children.

The advertising at issue depicts three boys playing with “zords,” smaller component that can be combined to build a “Megazord – the ultimate fighting machine.”  The advertising features shots of the Megazord pivoting as it wields a sword. In one shot, a small part of child’s thumb is visible as he manipulates the Megazord. In a second shot, a child’s hand is mostly obscured is behind the Megazord.

CARU questioned whether children viewing the commercial could take away the impression that the Megazord moves on its own.

CARU’s Guidance on Advertising Depicting Movement of Stationary Toys (“Toy Guidance”) states, “to avoid misleading children, commercials for toys that do not move on their own, but that are depicted as moving, should clearly and conspicuously demonstrate how the toys are made to move.”

After carefully reviewing the commercial, CARU determined a child viewing the commercial would not expect that the toy would move on its own.  CARU based its determination on the fact that the initial shot showing the two hands building the Megazord was clear and conspicuous, the standard for depicting movement in CARU’s Toy Guidance.

Bandai, in its advertiser’s statement, said the company “is committed to ensuring its advertising is not deceptive, unfair or inappropriate for intended audience.  We appreciate CARU’s efforts in promoting responsible children’s advertising and strive to uphold the CARU guidelines in all of our advertising efforts.”