I was surprised that MR chose to have the adult man working the train throttle w/ the young boy, presumably his son, looking on as a spectator.
I was under the impression that the primary objective of the "World's Greatest Hobby" recruiting campaign was to entice younger participants to become model railroad enthusiasts. Given that model railroading is competing with SONY Playstation, X-Box, and etc. whose main focus is to create direct interaction w/ the 2D video screen via a hand held joy stick, I would think MR should be placing the train throttle in the child's hand so as to create the same image of interacting with the 3D models in front of you.3D certainly surpasses the impact of 2D. However, and I fear this to be true, MR may need to simulate train wrecks and hideous collisions w/ carnage to overcome the inherent violence of these video games.
IMHO, the target group needs to be either the age group who are not yet old enough to play video games, or the kids who have not yet played video games. I don't think there's any chance that MR can convert video gamers to model railroading. Hence, the campaign needs to rely heavily on visual images [model train related posters, magazine covers, and actual trains [Thomas, etc.] to gain the attention and the enthusiasm of the toddlers. Flood the kindergarten classes and the elementary schools with fun, family like images involving model trains. Create a child level MR magazine like Sports Ilustrated did for children. Place that magazine in school libraries. That's the target group, but the images and the content must place the child in control w/ the parents assuming the spectator role.
Food for thought ... only