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Framstorn and Ooll Rut!

September 15, 2011

So today I was browsing in a bookstore near the market in Da Lat, and after realizing that all the books were in Vietnamese and therefore unreadable, I went to the “media and other stuff” section that is apparently mandatory in all bookstores, even ones over here.

Vietnamese Harry Potter

The adventures of Harry Potter, now in a form I can't read!

Western movies caught my eye, but it took a little browsing to find the real gems of the bookstore: Vietnamese toys. You see, like China, Vietnam seems to have a toy industry based on copying toys from other countries (namely the US and Japan), shoddily making them, and then giving them hilarious names:



This guy is amazing: usually ripoff toys use slightly-related but comprehensible names. But “Framstorners”? That’s an amazing level of ripoff insanity. More after the break:

This guy is more typical of ripoffs: “RoboWarriors” is a name you could conceivably give to a franchise about fighting robots.

Apologies for the blur

Thomas and Friends become “Funny Train”. You can’t see the train’s faces in this pic, but trust me, they’re there.


Among a groups of Lego ripoffs is this member of “Special Police Z-Force”. Although most ripoff toys are known for their shoddily cheap construction, ripoff Legos might be the worst kind. Real Legos go through strenuous quality control so they can easily be put together and (sometimes less) easily come apart, and keep doing that for a lifetime of use. Even western Lego-like toys like Megabloks are known for being much worse at this, imaging what these guys must be like.

"Machine City Builder"

In the vein of the last one, here’s a Duplo ripoff.

And these were the toys I found in a relatively upscale bookstore. There are tons of smaller toy shops in the streets of Da Lat, and even more general shops will have products featuring the near-names and images of western brands. And don’t get me started on how much stuff there is with the Disney logo that most likely didn’t get vetted by the Mouse…

One Comment leave one →
  1. Gary Childs permalink
    September 16, 2011 9:26 pm

    Ripoffs: incredible!

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