SavannahNow Article

Pulling of Al Snow doll shows Wal-Mart missed the point

By Doug Gross

Savannah Morning News

Plenty of valid complaints could be lodged about some of the WWF's often over-the-top content. But Wal-Mart's decision this week to pull an Al Snow doll from the store's shelves was just plain wrong, and showed the folks making the decision hadn't done their homework.

The company pulled the Summer Slam '99: Road Rage Al Snow doll on Tuesday, after complaints that the doll made light of violence toward women. Apparently, a couple of people complained about the doll, which depicts Snow holding a long-haired mannequin head, with the words "Help Me" scrawled across its forehead.

Just a couple of problems here.

First of all, anyone familiar with the "Insane" Al Snow character knows that the mannequin head gimmick has nothing to do with violence toward anyone.

It has everything to do with Al being an odd, odd man.

As most folks reading this column -- and I'm assuming the mother of two who complained to Wal-Mart probably isn't -- realize, Al's schtick is that he talks to and receives messages from the mannequin head.

He loves the head. He respects the head. He fights for the head. And, clearly, he ain't right in the head.

Second, as wrestling fans know, Snow is the one who usually has the words "Help Me" scribbled on his forehead, not the mannequin.

He needs help, mainly from very nice licensed professionals.

A little research on the part of Wal-Mart would have shown them that anyone likely to buy the doll knows that suburban Atlanta mom didn't see what she thought she saw.

Not that we should be surprised at Wal-Mart. These are the same folks, remember, who refuse to sell rap albums they consider violent, yet continue to sell guns which, from what I've heard, are pretty good at making violence happen. Heard of any brutal compact disc slayings lately?