Wham-O, the makers of such fine toys as the Hula Hoop and the Slipe-and-Slide are suing the producers of David Spade’s latest movie Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star. The movie features Spade trying to slide on a dry Slip-and-Slide with hilarity ensuing in the process.
In one key scene that appears in Paramount’s trailers for the PG-13 film, Spade’s character launches himself belly first across a dry Slip ‘N Slide — not realizing it’s supposed to be wet first — then rolls over with red welts on his chest, crying "Oooooh, it stings." In another scene, Spade lubricates the toy with vegetable oil, then slides into a fence.
"Wham-O is concerned about the depicted misuse of its product in the film and its advertising, particularly the potential for injury to children and even adults who, after viewing the scene, might use the product in the same reckless manner," said Peter Sgromo, marketing director of Wham-O’s toy division.
He said the movie "violates all safety guidelines that are clearly marked on the product and the packaging." Those guidelines limit the slide’s use to children aged 5 to 12, weighing less than 110 pounds and under 5 feet tall. In addition, the product must be inflated, wet and connected to a hose before being used.
I’m not sure what is more lame – another painfully unfunny David Spade movie (which would have been a better vehicle for the childlike Chris Farley were he still with us) or the completely humorless and overly litigious response from Wham-O.
Both need to develop a sense of humor.