October 25, 2014 posted by

Cereal Thrillers


Why was animation used so often to sell cereal? A lot of people in advertising think cereal is just for kids, and they think the same thing about cartoons. Of course, we know better than that, don’t we gang? So pull up a chair and enjoy these vitamin fortified spots. You may even be able to beat up bullies afterwards.

Kellogg’s Corn Flakes – Boat/ Strongman

Produced by Playhouse Pictures in 1955.

Kellogg’s Rice Krispies

Featuring the Gummo of cereal mascots, Pow. Also From Playhouse Pictures, 1955.

Trix – Faces

Produced by Cascade. Dick Tufeld joins in the fun. I’m guessing the distortion effect on the cereal box was achieved by making a series of photo enlargements and curving the photo paper progressively while doing so. Tricky stuff for those pre-computer days.

Cap’n Crunch – Mutiny on the Bouncy

From Jay Ward Productions. Featuring the voices of Paul Frees, Daws Butler and William Scott. The ever present Ben Washam and Phil Duncan are among the animators here.

Kix – Colodney

Directed by Len Glasser with voices by Len Maxwell.

Kellogg’s Apple Jacks – Violin

From DePatie-Freleng productions. Animated by Don Williams and Gerry Chiniquy. The designs look like the work of Tom Yakutis. This is a fine example of the “spinach” technique of selling cereal. The weird apple guy is voiced by Paul Frees.


  • Interesting how General Mills originally touted Trix as “The Sugar Cereal with the Fruit Flavor.” Boy, that kind of up-front honesty in advertising doesn’t exist today.

  • “Care to join me in a bowl of cereal?”…”No actually, I don’t think we’d both fit.” (Sounds kinky though…)

  • “The Gummo of cereal mascots” Hee-hee-hee! Good one!

  • Now I’ll have the “Trix is a happy cereal” tune in my head all day..Thanks..

    I’d forgotten about the original Apple Jacks spot//

  • One good thing about that Trix ad: No annoying Silly Rabbit!

  • When Snap, Crackle, and Pop went out barhopping in the evening, did they get drunk with Power?

  • That Trix song sounds like something Raymond Scott or Mahlon Merrick would produce.

  • ohhhh, my dear God! What a great memory you’ve given me today (with Apple Jacks…and bullies!) And…on a new note….. It seems Pow has the same apparatus that we New Orleanians have on our Mardi Gras Floats to “stay on!” A riot!!!

  • In that Kix spot, Len Maxwell sounds like he’s trying for an impression of Pete Smith of MGM short subject fame.

  • I love how they were so unashamed and even proud about sugar content!

    • There’s nothing to be ashamed about sugar, it’s High Fructose Corn Syrup we need to be ashamed about.

  • Another great series of classic animated commercials. I liked the Apple Jacks ad.

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