Toys “R” Us has pulled the “Breaking Bad” doll collection from the toy retailer’s shelves, a move that comes after a Florida mother petitioned to stop sales of the adult-themed line in a store mostly meant for children.
Susan Schrivjer, of Fort Myers, Fla., had generated a ton of media attention in recent days after a petition she posted on Change.org called on Toys “R” Us to stop selling character action figures based on the hit TV show “Breaking Bad.” In the petition, Schrivjer wrote that an action figure inspired by the show — complete with a detachable sack of cash and a bag of meth — was a “dangerous deviation from their family friendly values.”
Toys “R” Us spokeswoman Kathleen Waugh said the action figures had taken an “indefinite sabbatical,” after initially explaining to Fortune that Toys “R” Us sold a variety of fictional action figures in the adult action figure section of its stores. When “Breaking Bad” figures were on the retailer’s shelves they were carried in “very limited quantities,” Waugh said. The figures are manufactured by Mezco Toyz.
The retailer has in the past stocked action figures based on material with adult themes without raising red flags. For example, Toys “R” Us sold a line of action figures based on the “Hunger Games” movie when it was released in 2012, with some of the figures based on teen characters that were killed in the dystopian film.
But the decision to pull “Breaking Bad” from its shelves allows Toys “R” Us to move on from a controversy that had been brewing online and could have potentially been a distraction ahead of the key holiday shopping season–when a bulk of toys in the U.S. are sold. Toys “R” Us has reported stronger same-store sales in the U.S. for two consecutive quarters, but the pressure is on for the retailer to continue to drive more business to its stores as other retailers like Target (TGT) focus more on the toy market.