Retail giant Walmart is reaching out to the plus size market in an ill-advised way this Halloween: by offering online shoppers a section of "Fat Girl Costumes."
This tip comes to us from a reader, who was hunting high and low for a Halloween costume when she turned to Walmart, because sometimes desperation makes us do strange things. That's when she noticed that the retail giant was helpfully directing her towards the section for "fat girl costumes."
As of this morning, the Fat Girl section is still up; it features a lot of the same outfits as the Women's Plus Size Adult section, which makes us think some web developer created the section as a "hilarious" joke and then neglected to change it. At least one person has complained about it to Walmart on Twitter, where they got a very polite, very general, only slightly robotic apology:
Walmart, God bless them, has something to offend just about everyone: if being called fat isn't quite your speed, why not peruse one of these racist American Indian parody outfits? Or this entire selection of "Gypsy" costumes? Or, returning to fatness, this super witty and sophisticated Fat Tinkerbell get-up for men? The description reads "Tinkerbell really let herself go since she has been out of work for so many years!" Get it? Get it? Sigh. There's also this incredibly bizarre description for a "Marie Antoinette costume," which features both beheading jokes and random symbols in the place of apostrophes:
I bet sheÕs regretting that crack about letting them eat cake by now. The WomenÕs Ghost Marie Antoinette Costume is a quality costume. There arenÕt very many costumes of the Dauphin of France floating around, and even less where sheÕs a ghost. Spirits that used to be royalty must be the worst. ItÕs one thing to haunt some abandoned, old shack, itÕs a whole other bag of marbles to haunt a palace. ThatÕs gotta bring the property value way down.The WomenÕs Ghost Marie Antoinette Costume comes with a dress, a neck slash, and cobwebs. Bonnet rouge not included.The WomenÕs Ghost Marie Antoinette Costume is a spectral outfit of the last Queen of France. Ghost plus Royalty. A winning combination.
That same bizarre description, by the way, is featured on a few other costume websites, right down to the weird typos. It's not clear where the original description was penned by the budding Shakespeares behind Walmart's website copy or someone else.
Walmart's costume section, in other words, is truly the hottest of messes. Let's start taking bets on how long it'll be until the Fat Girl section disappears and we're subjected to a totally sincere apology from a retail giant who really really cares (about taking your money, in return for a shitty costume).
Update, 11:15 a.m.: The gears are in motion over at Walmart's HQ — as of 11:15, all the costumes have been removed from the "Fat Girl" section, although it still shows up like this:
Getting closer, guys!
Update 2, 1:30: The Fat Girl category appears to have disappeared altogether, and Walmart is busily auto-replying to many, many angry customers on Twitter: