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Minion madness: The minion craze of Despicable Me

Meld Magazine

Wed Aug 28 2013


MINION mania took hold of McDonald’s restaurants all over the world, with avid Despicable Me fans lining up and even camping out to collect a full set of minions. Jessica-Anne Lyons and Jyethe Wong cover the collecting craze.

If you caught Despicable Me 2 at the cinemas, you’re likely already infatuated with the little yellow creatures. If it’s still on your to-see list, let’s fill you in.

Storyline aside – because it’s really these guys who stole the show – the Despicable Me minions are adorable jellybean-like characters who talk in endearing little voices and get up to hilarious antics throughout both Despicable Me films.

Since the sequel’s release, it appears the love for these creatures has spread from the movie theatre out into McDonald’s Happy Meals all over the world and in turn, winning collectors’ hearts.

A range of mini Minion toys were available with a Happy Meal purchase in July this year and it has since exploded into a full-blown collecting craze.

But with some toys only available in certain countries, collecting the entire set was quite a feat and soon the competition became intense.

Think long lines outside of McDonald’s restaurants where passionate minions fans even camped out overnight to get their hands on the limited edition toys. An example of this craziness can be seen in the video below which was filmed in Malaysia.

Sarah Chin, a second year RMIT University architecture student, first experienced Minion mania when she returned home to Malaysia over the winter break and managed to get her hands on three while there.

“There were people queuing in McDonald’s in Malaysia for hours just to get their hands on a toy,” she recalled.

When she came back to Melbourne, she went to four different McDonald’s restaurants in the city to find the missing minions from her collection.

“In Melbourne, I didn’t have to line up for any of them because it seemed most people here weren’t looking for the toys,” said Sarah.

“But surprisingly a lot of places ran out of stock pretty fast.”

There were some limited editions that I couldn’t find, but I have a friend in America that collected 6 for me there and he shipped them to me,” she said.

With a complete set reaching more than $700 on eBay, it’s no wonder that passionate fans are fighting to get their hands on the full collection.

“I heard someone selling their collection on eBay for thousands of dollars and I thought I could do that with my collection,” said Sarah.

“But they’re just too cute to be sold, so in the end I decided to keep them.”

A full collection of minions certainly means a lot of Happy Meals, so it begs the question, did Sarah really eat almost twenty meals to feed her love for the minions?

“Oh no, I hardly eat McDonald’s,” she admitted.

“Many McDonald’s were nice enough to just sell the toy to me without having to buy a Happy Meal.”

When asked if this was her first time ever collecting things, Sarah laughed it off.

“Yes it is,” she says with a smile. “I’ve never collected anything before”.

Did you or anyone you know get swept up by Minion madness? Let us know your stories in the comments below!