Fruit Brute and Other Forgotten Cereals

August 21, 2013

Wheaties and Rice Krispies have taken up permanent residency in America’s breakfast bowls—these forgotten cereals, not so much.

Fruite Brute and Other Forgotten CerealsFruit Brute: General Mills debuted a line of five monster cereals in the 1970s: Franken Berry, Yummy Mummy, Count Chocula, Boo Berry, and Fruit Brute. The biggest flop of the bunch: Fruit Brute. But it has a cool factor—filmmaker Quentin Tarantino collects old cereals, and his personal box of Fruit Brute has appeared in his movies Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction. BREAKING NEWS: This Fall we will see the return of Fruit Brute and Fruity Yummy Mummy for Halloween. This may be the best Halloween EVER!

Graham Crackos: Kellogg’s released this graham-cracker-flavored cereal in the late-1970s, a few years before the crack-cocaine epidemic that hit American cities. In light of this, old commercials for Crackos become unsettling. In one, a character named George arrives at a suburban house to deliver a box of Crackos to a new family. In the background, a cheery balladeer sings, “Something new is comin’ to town, George the Milkman is bringin’ it ’round.” After the mother takes a bite, she asks George if the cereal will help slow her kids down. “Long enough for them to eat,” he replies.

Mr. T Cereal: Based on the fool-pitying strongman’s animated self in Mister T, his early-1980s cartoon show, it was made up of crispy corn chunks shaped like the letter T. Essentially, Mr. T Cereal was a clone of Alpha-Bits, but with just one letter.

Prince of Thieves: This cash-in on the 1991 film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves had a couple of problems: 1) Manufacturer Ralston-Purina couldn’t get the rights to Thieves star Kevin Costner’s likeness, so they had to put a generic Robin Hood image on the box, and 2) the cereal was supposed to look like little arrows, but came out resembling a certain part of the male anatomy.

Featured story from Uncle John’s Fully Loaded 25th Anniversary Bathroom Reader.