Wednesday, July 20, 2016

20/20 was NUTS FOR NINTENDO in 1988

Citing the fact that kids never want to stop playing video games and when they do they "speak a language only they understand," one of the most popular news programs in American history looks to dive deep into why kids are "Nuts for Nintendo."

The story begins in front of a toy store in New York City, with the report standing in line with other adults waiting for the store to open so they can buy copies of Super Mario Bros. 2. John Stossel, the reporter says that the director of the show asked him to wait in line for him so he could get his child a copy of the game. The journalist then begins to interview various people in the line, one of which says he traveled from Indiana to New York City just for a copy of SMB2. Yeesh.

 "What's Nintendo and why should you care?"

The narrator talks about how people in the community say that children no longer talk about fashion or what other kids are doing on the school bus, but instead they talk about video games. To sell the audience on just how CRAZY these kids are for using this device that "controls the characters" on the TV, they arranged a "Nintendo party."

Nintendo is big, and I mean big, according to some toys industry suit they interview in the piece. He said that Barbie, an institution of the toys industry, brings in about $500 million in revenue per year. Impressive, except for the fact that Nintendo triples those numbers.

The story says that there are two types of games that exist on the platform, sports and adventure!

When asked what is good about Super Mario Bros. 2, this kid says "Birdo" because "he shoots eggs out of his nose."

They say that Nintendo has exploded in popularity primarily because the quality of the games available is much better than what people were previously used to in the home on platforms such as the Atari 2600.

We cut back to the news reporter, who is in shock that you can throw enemies as weapons in Super Mario Bros. 2, and this little kid in an over-sized sweater calls him out on it, saying that it is because he's a grown up. He says "You're a grown up, you have work to do." Hey now, kid! I'm a grown up and I knew that you could do that!

The story cuts to Nintendo of America's headquarters in Washington and says that their army of customer support people receive FIFTY THOUSAND calls a day asking for tips & tricks regarding the most popular games. Here's this dude playing a light gun game in his cubicle.

He says that Nintendo's games are an even bigger success in their home country of Japan, where large crowds of people get upset because they can't get copies of the newest Dragon Quest game.

Mr. Stossel asks a question that I've heard several times throughout Nintendo's history; is Nintendo really running out of supplies or are they holding back shipments to increase the mystique and demand for their product? This is something that Nintendo has been accused of even up to the release of the Wii console ten years ago, so it wouldn't necessarily be shocking that it was the case as it is a strategy toy manufacturers have utilized in the past.

The last point that is brought up in the story is "Should parents buy Nintendo products for their children at all?" He brings up something about a TV violence group that says that kids shouldn't play it because it makes them violent, but the reporter doubts that. He does say that playing these games a lot could lead to children becoming obsessive.

After the piece ends we cut to John Stossel at a desk with Barbra Walters, who asks if these games are harmful and will cause the kids to become brain dead. John believes that under the right time restrictions that children who plays these games will be fine and that he doesn't believe that the violence, which is mostly cartoon-like, is something that is harmful necessarily. He ends to say that he ended up buying an NES because of this story and that he and his wife have been enjoying it.

So take THAT, kid that says grown ups can't play Nintendo!

Watch the story in its entirety here.

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