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The Simpsons toys banned in Iran

The Simpsons join Barbie on Iran's banned-doll list.
Barbie ban 160112Enlarge
Barbie has officially been pulled from Tehran's shelves, as Iran's religious leaders attempt to quash Western cultural influences. (Miguel Villagran/AFP/Getty Images)

Iran has banned dolls based on characters from the television show The Simpsons, the Associated Press reported today

Marge and Homer join Barbie on the country's black list of toys, part of Iran's "soft war" on Western culture. But some Western toys are still allowed. 

Spiderman and Superman are legal in Iran because they help the oppressed, Mohammad Hossein Farjoo, secretary of policymaking at the Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults, told the Shargh daily

Officials would not explain what was problematic about the Simpsons dolls, other than to say that toys in Iran cannot have distinguishable human genitals, be based on adults or blare Western music.

More from GlobalPost: Banned in Burma: The Simpsons?

The Simpsons, a cartoon on Fox, is not shown in Iran, but residents with foreign satellite channels are able to see it, Reuters reported

In January, Iran's "morality police" cracked down on Barbie. They visited toy shops and asked merchants to remove the offending dolls. But the government-approved replacement dolls have not been as successful. 

"My daughter prefers Barbies. She says Sara and Dara are ugly and fat," one mother told Reuters in January.

Imported toys are a $57 million industry in Iran. AP reported that an additional $20 million worth of toys were smuggled across the border in 2011.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/the-simpsons-toys-banned-iran

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