So, Scholastic Freakin’ Books and Kaiser Permanente have put up this online video game called The Incredible Adventures of the Amazing Food Detective, in which children are encouraged to investigate the “crime” of ostensibly unhealthy eating among their peers.
You can read about just how twisted and ridiculous this game is over at Junkfood Science. A highlight:
The Food Detective game invites kids to click on the “AFD Case Files” of various “Suspects:” children who are supposedly behaving badly. The fat little 10-year old girl is Emily. The game tells kids that Emily is fat because “she eats too much and needs to learn portion control.” The food detective sets up a security cam in her house “to catch the culprit in the act” and she is shown gobbling nonstop a table of fattening foods and a chart shows her eating a whopping 4,550 [kilo]calories.
Here’s the thing that really interested me when I played the game, though: Emily’s problem is supposedly that she eats too much, not that she eats the “wrong” foods. The Amazing Food Detective introduces her by saying, “Emily has a good diet, but she eats too much. She needs to learn portion control.”
However, in Emily’s case file, we see a grocery list that reads:
- potato chips
- chocolate bar
- frosted doughnut
- chocolate chip cookies
When you “solve the case” by shrinking all of Emily’s portions (don’t even ask), that changes to a grocery list featuring fruits and vegetables.
Even when they’re specifically saying the fat kid does not eat tons of junk food, that grocery list tells a different story. Old stereotypes die hard, I guess. And apparently, video games don’t have copy editors to catch blatant logical errors like that.
Worldwide Headquarters and Editorial Office
New York, New York 10012
(e-mail links available at BFB)
Their “media” contacts (yes, an HMO has media contacts) are:
* Sybil Kelly-Wartenberg
* Susannah Patton
Go get angry, y’all. Then come back here and chill out on Fillyjonk’s Friday Fluff thread.