The Blind Bag Phenomenon

Have you noticed when you’re walking through the toy aisles that there are a heck of a lot of “blind bag” toys on the shelves? What do I mean by blind bag? It’s usually some kind of small toy that is part of a series in a bag or box with no indication of which toy from that series you’re getting. I don’t know about your kids, but my kids go nuts for them! It doesn’t matter what toy line or franchise the blind bags are from — Minecraft, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Shopkins, Lego, the list goes on and on — if there is a mystery toy inside, my kids are interested. It can’t just be my kids either, because blind bag toys have been on the shelves for a while, which means they sell well enough to keep making more.

Tales from the Dad Side - blind bag

I get it, there’s something about the mystery of what you’re picking out and the possibility that it could one of many different toys before you buy it. And I admit, occasionally I’m suckered in to buying a blind bag of something or other for myself. When the Lego Batman Movie blind bags first came out, I bought a couple trying to get some cool, weird Batman minifig. (For the record I got Catman and the Caveman version of Batman.) Usually I am disappointed when I buy one of these toys and I don’t buy any more for a while. For instance, there are some Kreo Transformers blind bags that I keep seeing in the store, and I’m tempted to buy one, but I’m afraid that instead of getting Soundwave or Hot Rod, I’ll end up with some random Decepticon that I’m not interested in.

My kids though, even if they don’t get the toy that they want from the blind bag, they aren’t discouraged. They want another blind bag to try to get that super rare, super cool mystery toy that will make their lives complete!

It seems like it doesn’t matter what’s in the blind bag either. For instance, my 7-year-old, who has never shown much of an interest in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, got two TMNT blind bags a little while back. We spent a few minutes in the aisle of the store, feeling the various packages to try and find a Leonardo and a Shredder. She found a Leo, but the other one was a Foot Soldier. Still, she wasn’t discouraged.

Speaking of standing around squeezing packages in store aisles, there’s a friend at work who became quite adept at feeling the packages of the Lego Batman Movie minifig blind bags trying to round out his collection. He got pretty good at it too! The trick was trying to figure out which accessory was in the bag and figure out which character it was from there. Eventually he found out there was a code of braille-like bumps on the packages that he could use to narrow down his hunt even further.

I’m half convinced you can sell just about anything in a blind bag and kids will be interested in it. I bet if you started packaging rocks in blind bags with the possibility that every so often you’d get a semi-precious stone like a piece of quartz or an amethyst, kids would buy it. Say, that’s not such I bad idea. I just need some rocks, some opaque plastic bags, and a cool name. I’m off to the store!

What about you, do your kids go nuts for blind bags? Does the prospect of mystery platic drive them nuts? Let us know in the comments!

Leave a Comment