After letting the movie go through the indie circuit for a while, Disney has finally decided to release a little marketing effort for Frozen.
In case you haven’t heard of it, Frozen is a small little movie from Disney. The studio has its fingers crossed that they will turn a profit, and it looks like they will have a good chance given the fact that the box office and merchandising have brought in approximately eleventy skillion dollars.
The cereal’s release is a bit odd, since it seems like they’d have put this out a while ago to coincide more directly with the movie’s release. But I guess this is one of those “tying in with home video” cereal releases, which are usually reserved for when a movie did insanely well in theaters but they forgot to release a cereal back when it first came out. I’m completely guessing with that whole thing, and using only this movie as my evidence.
Frozen cereal is a yin yang of effort – a fantastic cereal box with an extraordinarily lazy cereal inside. Frozen goes the route of lots of licensed cereal, with the whole “slightly larger than variety pack-sized” box size – 8.4 ounces. Going off memory, The Amazing Spider-Man Cereal was the smallest licensed cereal box I’d seen in a long time, and Frozen goes even smaller than Spider-Man’s 8.7 ounces. Insert shrinkage joke here.
While the box itself is small, it looks great. The box is covered front to back in a shiny, winter-y sheen. My usual horrible pictures don’t nearly do the box justice, as the box is legitimately really well designed. It’s bright and reflective, with a nice balance between showing the characters and still giving the nice background imagery a chance to shine through.
Disney hedged their bets between letting the Anna and Elsa star on the box, and showing the whole cast, by doing a double A-side box. Instead of having a pointless maze or something on the back of the box, they just had two fronts of the box. This way they get to have the two main characters again, but also show Olaf, red-nosed human guy, and Moosey the moose.
It’s a dumb thing to get excited about, but this really is the nicest cereal box I’ve seen in a long time.
Now, the bad news. The cereal kind of sucks.
I mean, the cereal isn’t bad, it’s just lazy and boring. It’s cereal pieces with marshmallows. And yes, most movie tie-in cereals nowadays goes this route. But Frozen used these grimy cereal pieces – puffy without being puffs, sort of crunchy without being nice Lucky Charms-esque pieces. They’re in this unpleasant middle ground, and have a distinctly cheap “store brand” appearance.
Like the texture, the taste is also in a middle ground. For a sweetened cereal with marshmallows, it’s bizarrely restrained when it comes to sweetness. Not sweet enough to be an indulgence, not not-sweet enough to taste healthy.
The cereal pieces are almost as pale as the white marshmallows. I know it’s a Frozen cereal, but this pale, washed-out color palette reads as depressing, not wintery.
Obviously, Disney didn’t have to put much effort into the cereal, because all they had to do was slap “Frozen” on a box of bran flakes and kids would be violently grabbing the boxes off store shelves. But since the box is so well done, it’s a shame the inside didn’t match the outside.
[no seal of approval]
[but I wouldn’t begrudge you buying it just for the packaging]
Froot Loops have always been a minor-league call up cereal for me. I never go out of my way for it, but occasionally I’ll get a box and remember that it’s awesome. Then Kellogg’s released Froot Loops Treasures last year, and the Froot Loops name has stayed among my upper echelon of cereals. Froot Loops Treasures are one of my favorite cereals released in a while. So while the Froot Loops brand gained favor with me, regular Froot Loops has still sort of hung around in the background.
Kellogg’s seemed to struggle with a unique brand extension, and finally just said, “what if we made the loops into spheres?” After the rest of the people in the meeting presumably shrugged and responded with, “I guess”, Froot Loops Bloopers were born.
Naming your product after a term that means “error” or “hilarious mistake” doesn’t seem like the best start. Then bragging on the box about your “Out of this world new shape!”, when referring to a bowl of uniformly-shaped circles doesn’t seem like a strong follow-up decision.
Despite Froot Loops Bloopers being off to a very unimpressive start, I soldiered on.
Bloopers seem to keep the same shades of colors that the regular Loops have, making for a nice-looking bowl of cereal. The colors themselves are a little more subdued than the almost-neon colors of Trix or Oops! All Berries, and the pastel shades make for a nice change of color pace.
I was surprised at just how good the cereal was. Going from loops to spheres has improved the cereal’s taste. Not that Froot Loops don’t taste good, but I just seemed to like the flavor better in this – dare I say – out of this world shape.
I’ve never been a fan of Trix – something about the flavor of it always seemed unpleasant to me. And while Oops! All Berries is okay, I don’t particularly want a whole bowl of the berries without some of the blander Cap’n pieces to balance them out. Bloopers seems to be the best compromise of fruit (froot) flavor in a spherical venue, without comically high levels of sweetness.
I can’t imagine this cereal lasting too long, only because of how pointless this product seems – at least until people try it. Then again, I assumed Treasures wouldn’t last that long, and they’re still around. So hopefully Bloopers stick around for a little while, because they’re awesome.
[insert seal of approval here]