It’s a tough day for all you kids at heart out there—the iconic toy emporium, the obsession of ’80s and ’90s children across North America, the number one employer of people in giraffe costumes, Toys ‘R’ Us has filed for bankruptcy protection in the US The company is reported to be on the verge of doing the same thing here in Canada very soon.
The news comes as a serious bummer to anyone who has ever had the pleasure of riding up and down the store’s aisles on one of those giant bouncy balls with handles (back in the day before your pilates teacher began torturing you with them), or wandered while browsing for hours, deciding what to ask your grandparents to get you for your ninth birthday (limit: $25).
So far, it’s pretty much business as usual in Canadian Toys ‘R’ Us stores and for the 65,000 people that Toys ‘R’ Us employs in countries all over the world. Financing to the tune of US $3 billion will keep most outlets open for now, while the company’s money people figure out how to, or if they can, stay open long-term. The future for Toys ‘R’ Us, however, is uncertain, and that will probably make anyone who grew up singing the store’s jingle all week, praying that their parents would interrupt the weekend routine with a spontaneous trip to Toys ‘R’ Us (‘Just this once PUH-lease Mom!’) a little bit sad.
Out of all the ads that divided up your Saturday morning cartoon binge (Count Chocula! Power Wheels! Transformers! Kool-Aid!) the Toys ‘R’ Us spots, starring some of your fave kid actors, always had the catchiest song. We bet you still know it. Some of you can probably still picture an adorable baby Jaleel White belting it out from a swingset, or Rilo Kiley singer Jenny Lewis sweetly serenading us from inside a mountain of stuffed animals. But just in case you haven’t committed these classic ads to memory, we’ve got them right here for you—and they’re the perfect remedy to get us through these tough times. Check out this one featuring White, Lewis, and Beverly Hills, 90210 actor Lindsay Price:
And here’s the version the company did 14 years later, featuring some of the exact same actors—proof that they definitely didn’t want to grow up:
And finally, this one, with it’s updated, oh-so-nineties attempt at modernizing the jingle with a bit of hip-hop-inspired flavour (same old Geoffrey, though):
Sigh. Growing up is totally overrated.