Pebbles cereal, made by Post, is yet another cereal I was deprived of as a child. I’m not sure if was the colorful nature of the cereal, or if it actually had a lot of sugar in the 90s (today, the Fruity Pebbles only has 11 grams of sugar), but all I know is my mom never bought it. To this day, I don’t think I’ve ever had any of the Pebbles cereals. But I do know the names of the characters on the cereal boxes. I wonder if kids today know these names.
I bring this question up because I think it speaks to the longevity of the cereal–which first appeared in 1971–and Post’s ability to keep their “mascots,” even though kids today don’t watch The Flintstones (unless they watch Boomerang, but let’s face it, most kids are watching Spongebob and Dora the Explorer). Despite this, Post is able to sell their products, and they don’t even seem to need to change the box fronts much for the different flavors:
It looks to me like the first ones are identical, aside from their color. Even the pebbles flying around Fred’s head are exactly the same size, shape, and location. The milk is spilling off the spoon in an identical way. Their “catch-phrase” is even the same: “Rocks your whole mouth.” Also, the side of the box has the same promotional text. Clearly, Post doesn’t feel the need to change up their boxes for these two flavors.
Pebbles Boulders is slightly different, mostly because the shape of the cereal is different, and Post needs to advertise that it is a chocolate peanut butter cereal. But even the locations of the “boulders” are highly reminiscent of the pebbles in the previous boxes and the milk is still splashing the same way.
Marshmallow Pebbles is more similar to the first two boxes, especially with the location of the cereal name. It fits in with the [insert description here] Pebbles feel and the pebbles are flying around, the same as with all the other boxes.
Oh, and did I mention, Fred is positioned and smiling the exact same way in every box?
Now, I know the similarities are done purposefully. Kids know that that guy is on the box of one of their favorite cereals, whether they know his name or not. I guess the question is, does it really matter anymore?