Halloween is the time of year for pumpkins, candy, horror movies, costumes, and the inevitable bad costume choice. In 2005, pictures of Prince Harry dressed as Adolf Hitler surfaced—turns out that was not actually a good idea, no matter how scary the dictator may have been. Every year, retailers come up with ideas for costumes that are just in bad taste (remember last year's recently robbed Kim Kardashian?)—like this one that was just recalled of famous young diarist and tragic Holocaust victim Anne Frank.
Several people on Twitter noticed the costume, which was being sold by by online retailers. It included a beret, a bag, and a dress with a "destination tag," which (I think?) is the concentration camp to which Anne Frank would have been sent.
At least one person said that this was actually a British evacuee costume, which could also explain this "destination tag."
But either way, the costume is definitely being marketed as Anne Frank, no question about it. The description for the costume reads,
We can always learn from the struggles of history. Unfortunately, World War II shook the world in a way that no one could have foreseen. It showed us what true and mettle were. It also created some unexpected heroes, where even a young girl like Anne Frank with nothing but a diary and hope could become an inspiration to us all. We can all learn from someone like that!
I can't imagine what the photo shoot for this one must have been like. The young girl looks "sassy," which is probably a slightly more palatable for marketing than "existential horror."
As you can imagine, people were not particularly happy about this costume.
After receiving complaints, at least one retailer removed the costume from their site. I'm sure others will follow suit, if they haven't already. True, Halloween is time for things that are scary and maybe even shocking, but costume designers should maybe throw on their ol' thinking caps before manufacturing costumes that are indecorous and more sad than scary. Anne Frank was a real victim of the Holocaust, and should be honored, not made into a dress-up costume.