In a press conference held outside its Rhode Island headquarters on Monday, multinational toymaker Hasbro announced a recall of recent “American Idol” winner Scotty McCreery, which it characterized as a “failed animatronic experiment” released into the world too early in its development cycle.
“We would like to apologize to our fans and stockholders for our error in judgment in pushing Project SCMC17, known colloquially and to viewers of FOX’s ‘American Idol’ as Scotty McCreery, out to market before he was ready,” said contrite company spokeswoman Ella Francini. “Rest assured that this will not happen again.”
In a private interview after the press conference, Francini was even more candid. “Technology being what it is, today’s consumers expect their robotic puppets to appear quite lifelike, which is something we failed at in many respects with the creation of Scotty. From the comically exaggerated facial expressions while singing to the mechanical-seeming reactions to human conversational input, the whole thing was just a mess.”
“Plus, SCMC17 had to rely on a tiny crucifix-shaped solar panel as a supplemental energy source, so the programmers made him mention Jesus in every other sentence to justify wearing the panel around his neck all the time. In hindsight, it wasn’t the most elegant solution. After a couple minutes around the guy, even if you were a preacher or a nun, you couldn’t help but want to punch him in the face.”
Also problematic was SCMC17’s voice chip, which sampled too heavily from the tones and timbres of early Josh Turner bootlegs. “People saw right through it,” Francini confesses.
Still, don’t expect Hasbro to halt all activity in its animatronics division.
“As disheartening as it is to experience a setback like this, Hasbro is still very committed to our animatronic projects and finding future ‘American Idol’ placements for them. McCreery might have been a dud, but Ryan Seacrest is still doing very well for us.”
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