Saturday, September 04, 2010

The Cheerios Kid Beats Up A Train

Here's some fun design from a 50s Cheerios Kid commercial.
I love the clever use of values. It's amazing how good black and white can look when it's done with control and know-how.
Besides the design, the other thing I like about old animated commercials is that they tell a story.












I like how the real kid accepts the magic of a little super elf that inhabits his cereal.
An adult probably wouldn't buy it.
Man, look at him shove that stuff into his maw.

"Thank Heaven for little animated imps who tell me what to eat!"
"I can hardly wait to stand in front of a train, now that I've eaten my wholesome breakfast grains!"





Grow extra faces with Cheerios!



It's ready to eat, unlike other cereals that you have to mill and grind to a powder first.
This is a perfect commercial. In a lot of modern cereal commercials the tasteless airbrushed graphics just throw themselves at random at the screen and you have no idea what the commercial is about. These old ones tell us the message both logically and in a fun way. It made kids like the characters and want to savor every sugary morsel of the cereal.

18 comments:

RooniMan said...

Dang, if Cherrios could make me that strong, I'd buy a million of them.

Roberto Severino said...

I've always loved the way that old commercials in general were done in the 50s. They were never in your face about the product in any way, and were actually a pleasure to listen to and watch. Now in a lot of these modern advertisements, it seems like it's the advertiser's goal to heckle and annoy the viewer to death, ultimately driving them away from buying their product (at least for me).

"In a lot of modern cereal commercials the tasteless airbrushed graphics just throw themselves at random at the screen and you have no idea what the commercial is about"

Maybe it's because these companies believe that kids watching these commercials nowadays have the attention span of a peanut and are too stupid to even wanna pay attention to a commercial that actually has a meaning and coherent story. That's always what I've thought when I saw a character like Chip the Wolf annoyingly bouncing around my television set. Yet again, I hardly watch TV anymore anyway.

Even if the kids do have a short attention span, that doesn't mean you have to speed up every single damn commercial for them. Blame it on the parents for not bringing them up right. Just my two cents. Great post, as always.

Paul Penna said...

Well, to be fair, Cheerios wasn't/isn't a sugared cereal in the Sugar Frosted Flakes sense. But I sure added plenty of my own, enough so that I'd have a sugar/milk pudding left over at the bottom of the bowl. Yum. Still waiting for biceps like that, tho.

Niki said...

They still tell a story sir. It's just that the story is stupid, and says the magic just comes from the cereal so you don't have to eat it. Honey nut cheerios shoot lasers to stop bank robbers now.

Jorge said...

This commercial is better designed than the box and that awful tasting cereal!

Yowp said...

Today, this would run afoul of do-gooder groups that helped suck the life out of cereal ads and names from boxes. I think kids are smart enough to ignore claims of cereal ads. They're attracted to a product if the ad is fun.
What studio animated this? Ray Patin, Transfilm and John Sutherland were all doing some animation for General Mills in 1955.

HemlockMan said...

Some years back I was at the big Universal Studios theme park in Orlando walking around minding my own business when I was asked to watch some TV commercials--they paid me $20 cash to sit for fifteen minutes, watch the commercials, then answer some questions.

I wanted the cash for lunch, so I agreed. I watched the TV commercials. About twenty of them. Then they asked me what I thought of the Raisin Bran commercials sprinkled throughout the other ones (which were about all kinds of products). And I told them that I didn't recall any Raisin Bran commercials. They'd made no impression on me whatsoever. None. I couldn't recall that at all.

But I can still recall the Sugar Pops commercials from my childhood.

Martin Juneau said...

The story is pure silly but it's at least more honnest than any Cereal commercials i seen on TV since my childhood. I can't stand those Lucky Charms and the others ad's with those goddamn airbrushs.

Elana Pritchard said...

That train is damn sexy. Seriously. I almost want to get a tattoo of it.

Trevor Thompson said...

Save for the haircut, that imp and the boy are doppelgangers.

Bob said...

that last frame grab kinda reminds me of popeye

Isaak said...

Am I the only one who thinks "Be Human" would be a great commercial for PETA or other animal associations? It may offend all tastes and be barbarically tasteless, but its got a beat you can dance to!

Remember

"Its futile to be brutal so be human all the time"

mr paal said...

i want a second face! John what happened to the search box on yr blog? i miss it...

Jeff Read said...

In the late eighties the Cheerios kid (and related indicia, like the "Go Power" slogan and the cheerio in the bicep), was revived for a short time. The animation was a lot worse than the 50s version, but still not as abominable as the cereal mascots of today.

Severin said...

Has anyone noticed that some grocery stores have started stocking the old-fashioned boxes of Cap'n Crunch? I wonder if the old commercials could be next?

zmerrill said...

"In a lot of modern cereal commercials the tasteless airbrushed graphics just throw themselves at random at the screen and you have no idea what the commercial is about"

This commercial is very logical, entertaining, and makes lots of sense. But for the complaining parents and TV watchdogs will blame this commercial for some kid trying to punch a train after eating Cheerios, and then a bunch of bureaucratic FCC fascists come in and tell us "we can't have fun" because the kid was too stupid to know that the commercial was pretend.

I'm guessing with the modern commercials, they think kids like airbrushed colors (yuck!), and they don't care how retarded the commercial really is.

In other words, blame the FCC and corporate parasites (or as you say, "hippies"), for the "dumbification."

Jerry Beck said...

FYI - I'm running a whole two hours of 50s and 60s animated commercials on the big screen tonight at the Silent Movie Theater in Hollywood: http://www.cinefamily.org/calendar/jerrybeck.html#jerrybeck

L-TV said...

This is just great.