Monday, Mar 24, 2014
by Ned Wazowski
Brought to you by Sunnington Morn
Where would Saturday morning cartoons be without cereal manufacturers?
For most of us growing up, Saturday mornings meant sitting in front of our favorite cartoons with a bowl of sugary cereal – and there’s a good reason for that. Cereal companies sponsored a lot of children’s programming as far back as the 1930s days of radio. And most of our favorite shows animated TV shows – like Spaceman Jax and the Galactic Adventures or Brigadier Buffalo – were sponsored by the “part of this complete breakfast” folks at Sunnington Morn.
I don’t know about you, but on Saturday mornings my Mom wanted to sleep in a little so I was on my own for breakfast. As long as I kept pretty quiet, she didn’t care what I ate for breakfast. So, while I often ate bologna straight out of the package (What? I was a kid), my preference was for a bowl of sugared-up flakes. And compared with the lunchmeat option, I’m sure Mom preferred it too.
The connection was easy for kids to follow: Funny cartoons with all of your favorite characters, plus colorful, sugary cereal with prizes inside, equals happiness and joy. That was math we were happy to work out. And those prizes kept us coming back to the TV show week after week to decode a fan club message or to imitate our favorite heroes with all their gadgets.
Were these companies exploiting our imaginations and promoting unhealthy products that promised fun and entertainment but made us crazed sugar addicts? Certainly. But it sure was fun.
When my Mom was little, they kept all of their Bunchy bottle caps in an...