If you have children of the age 6 and under, and if you have a smartphone or an iPad, and you leave it in the vicinity of that child, within 20 seconds, he or she will be able to crack your password (“I learned it by watching you, Dad”) and locate an unboxing video. This is true even if you have deleted YouTube from your phone because now Prime Video has unboxing videos and I’m sure that Netflix is probably working on an unboxing series and also because kids can’t consistently flush the toilet but they can sift through the 109 apps on your phone and find the one with an unboxing video in its deeper recesses.
I do not understand the appeal of unboxing, but kids love it. For the unfamiliar, unboxing is just videos of people opening packages, usually of toys. They all have one thing in common: All we see are a pair of well-manicured hands opening the packages and all we hear are women with high-pitched voices of varying levels of obnoxiousness describing what it is that they are opening.
This video, for instance, has 875 million views.
For comparison’s sake, the official Avengers: Infinity War trailer has only 213 million views. The most popular viral video of all time, “Charlie Bit My Finger,” uploaded 11 years ago, has only 864 million views.
That’s how poular unboxing is. It is a thing. It is a very popular thing. And so, Paramount Players has hired Ice Age: The Meltdown writer Jim Hecht to write a movie about that thing called Unboxing.
Kids will hate it, and I’ll tell you why: It’s because Hecht plans to write a movie with a plot. From Deadline:
The plot centers on a mischievous 11-year-old YouTube star who unboxes her father’s secret safe as a stunt for her channel and unleashes the treacherous Puck and his band of evil tricksters on a small town.
The idea of a plot completely ruins the concept of unboxing. Kids don’t want a plot. They want to watch hands open blind bags and pull mini-figures out of cardboard and plastic while a soothing voice (to them, I guess?) describes the very thing they can see with their eyes.
I’m not sure exactly what the appeal is, but I think there’s a sense of mystery? Or living vicariously through others who are opening presents? God knows, kids typically do not give a sh*t about toys once they are unwrapped. A child will give up a meal in exchange for a blind bag, but once that bag is open, the child will lose complete interest with what’s inside. It’s the act of opening that’s the draw, and no kid is going to give a good goddamn about Puck and his evil tricksters.
Moreover, no parent — no matter how much they love their children — will be convinced to take their kid to a movie called Unboxing unless Gwyneth’s head is inside. Parents must draw the line somewhere, and that somewhere is “unboxing” and any movie involving the five-finger family that does not involve those fingers being mutilated and forcibly removed in an act that causes as much pain as possible.
Actually, though I generally loathe Eli Roth films, he would be perfectly suited to make a film called The Massacre of the Five-Finger Family. I would watch that movie. Twice.
Header Image Source: YouTube