Hatchimals Are 2016’s Most Popular Christmas Present, If You Can Find Them

Every year, there’s one Christmas present that children want above all others. In 1996, it was Tickle Me Elmo; 1997: Tamagotchi. Twenty years later, in 2016, toy-makers at Spin Master have finally cracked the code, and combined Tickle Me Elmo’s obnoxious cuteness with the neediness of the Tamagotchi.

Thus, Hatchimals were born.

If you have a kid, or spend an inordinate amount of time watching the Disney Channel (not judging), you’ve probably heard of Hatchimals. Which is to say, you’ve heard Lil’ Jaden screaming about Hatchimals. In case you haven’t, though: The toys come in eggs, and the more they’re played with, the quicker the species (known as Pengualas, Draggles, Owlicorns, Burtles, and Bearakeets; I’m totally Team Burtles) inside hatches. Then they go through different life stages — baby, toddler, and child — before dying, I guess?

Hatchimals retail for $59.99, but because the toys are sold out everywhere, including Walmart and Toys R Us (where a manager said, “Everybody lines up when they come in, and they go right out the door”), they’re going for hundreds, if not thousands, on eBay. “Mommy, I mean, Santa loves you, but not enough to spend three-hundred bucks on some sort of bird thing.”

They might not be back on shelves until after Christmas, either.

“The consumer response to Hatchimals has been extraordinary, exceeding all expectations,” a statement posted on the Hatchimals website reads. “Some of our first shipments have already sold out. While additional product will hit retail shelves in November, we anticipate this inventory will also sell out quickly. We have increased production and a whole new batch of Hatchimals will be ready to hatch in early 2017. This is a special season and we don’t want anyone to be disappointed, nor do we support inflated prices from non-authorized resellers. We are working on creative solutions to help kids and their parents withstand the wait. In the interim, some retailers are developing pre-sale and/or rain-check programs for redemption in January. We will continue to update with program details as they become available.” (Via)

Between Hatchimals and Nintendo’s NES Classic, or the lack there of, it’s going to be a very frustrating Black Friday for thousands of parents. On the bright side, at least Hatchimals don’t poop themselves to death?

(Via US Weekly)