Unsupervised children often delve into inappropriate content when they are given free rein on their gadgets. A recent addition to this horrific thread of online mischief is called Huggy Wuggy.
The unassuming name showcases why youngsters can easily be misled into clicking on the disturbing content.
Appearance-wise, Huggy Wuggy is a blue-furred video game character with large, dilated googly eyes, a wide mouth with sharp teeth and lengthy arms that almost touch its feet. Some have described the menacing animation as a combination of Grover, the Slender Man and Forky from Toy Story 4.
Reports hailing from the United Kingdom stated that children earned negative ideas from watching fan-made Huggy Wuggy videos, due to the songs featured in them with lyrics urging children to go up to people and hug them tightly until they ‘pop’.
A concerned mother took to Facebook to share an email from her child’s principal, addressing the matter. In the email, Huggy Wuggy was referred to as a “deceiving teddy bear who sings worrying songs about hugging and killing.”
Sky News also reported a similar instance, whereby a three-year-old boy had attempted to jump out the window upon watching the videos. Other sources claim that the videos encourage children to harm their parents.
In response, the Lafayette County Sheriff’s Office shared a Facebook post explaining the true explicit dangers imposed by the videos, with detailed descriptions of what some of them entail.
“In one video, a female character is drugged, passes out, and it is inferred a sexual assault is performed on her. In the same video, the female character’s husband sees a video of the sexual assault and believes the female character had committed adultery. The male character then hits the female character and divorces her,” the post read.
The post also explained that Huggy Wuggy is indeed a real character from the video game Poppy Playtime. The game is also not age-appropriate for children, as it consists of horror-related themes as well, centering around a toy store worker who is threatened by Huggy Wuggy, amongst other diabolical toys.
Equally terrifying jumpscare videos from the video game featuring the ‘teddy bear’ are also easily accessible on Youtube.
Although many of the videos have been taken down, trolls intending to endanger children continue to upload them on illicit sites, and many children get to them when they pop up, and possibly download them, before the site managers become aware.
The YouTube creator responsible for the production of the ominous lyric video, known as TryHardNinja, has released a statement in the comment section of his video to address the criticism he has faced.
In the statement, he explained that the facts displayed by the news articles are inaccurate, and he only tailored the lyrics to his vision of Huggy Wuggy, who is an official character in a horror game, and therefore already related to the horror genre which was never meant for children in the first place. Furthermore, he has marked the videos as unsuitable for kids, and he has no control over the video beyond that.
He closed his statement by saying, “Thanks so much for your feedback but there is nothing more that I can do to properly categorize this video. Deleting this video will not change the game, the thousands of other videos or Huggy Wuggy in any way. I hope this adds context to the misleading articles and posts.”