American McGee's Strawberry Shortcake

On April 14, 2003, Penny Arcade ran a comic titled "Tart As a Double Entendre":

Seeing the new McFarlane "Twisted Land of Oz" toys got us thinking about American McGee's Oz, about which fairly little is known. We do, however, have some insights on his next project.

Then they got sued. Well, threatened to be sued, at any rate. American Greetings Corporation (yes, the greeting card people you go to in the unlikely event Hallmark doesn't have what you want) owns Strawberry Shortcake, and made them take the comic down, replacing it with the following disclaimer:

On the plus side, Penny Arcade got a second comic out of it.

Anyway, apparently American Greetings had never heard of the Streisand Effect: wherein any attempt to censor information leads, invariably, to more and more attention. If American Greetings had just ignored the comic, it would be forgotten today, just another joke in a huge archive of them; but by completely failing to understand how the internet works, they made the comic something famous. And thus, when I think of "American McGee" (as in the case of today's Minimate), that's what I think of...

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4 Responses to American McGee's Strawberry Shortcake

  1. jestergoblin says:

    You're a monster for linking to TVTropes.

  2. PrfktTear says:

    I'm surprised it didn't fall under the right to parody.

    What about the artist who drew "grown-up" versions of She-Ra, Rainbow Brite, and Strawberry Shortcake or ToyFare, did that encur the wrath of American Greetings?

    • yo go re says:

      Oh, it totally would fall under right to parody. And a long, expensive court case would have definitely ended up siding with the Penny Arcade guys, at some point years down the road. Alternately, they could take the comic down, put up a big disclaimer, and make everyone curious about what had happened, thus winning in the long run...

  3. I actually asked Muriel Fahrion about her reaction to the comic when she was editing her article on Wikipedia back in 2019. She paid no attention that as she wanted to stay positive and all.

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