10 Cereal Tie-In Fails

We all know of Mr. T Cereal. “I pity the fool who don’t eat my cereal,” Mr. T would say.


Mr. T Cereal was a “Crispy Sweet Corn And Oats Cereal.” The cereal was shaped like the letter “T” and it tasted just like Cap’N Crunch. Kids who ate Mr. T cereal were known to be: “Teaming up with Mr T.”

Needless to say, Mr. T cereal is no longer with us; it went the way of other such bad tie-in cereals such as C-3POs (a new force at breakfast). Many of these cereals are just a quick tie-in – just to cash in on a movie or TV show’s popularity. Most taste like Cap’n Crunch. Here are the worst cereal fail tie-ins of all time:

1) Urkel-Os


Urlelo-O’s was based the wacky character from the television sitcom Family Matters Who would have thought an Urkel cereal, Urkel-Os would have never caught on? The year was 1991. America was going Urkel-crazy. That’s when Ralston introduced Urkel-Os: a strawberry and banana flavored cereal with yellow and red loop pieces. I guess Ralston were thinking, “Who wouldn’t want to eat a bowl full of Urkel?” Second worst choice for a name: “Urkel Logs.” Still, you can buy a box of Urkel-Os on eBay for a mere $99.


2) Indiana Jones Frosted Mini Wheats: Strawberry Delight


Holy Temple of Doom – this was actually a cereal. It seems like the creators of this cereal were just phoning it in. Take some Mini-Wheats, slap Indiana Jones’ face on the front of the box, and make it taste like strawberries. If that’s not enough to entice kids, also give away a free DVD. One question: Why strawberry?

3) Bill & Ted’s Excellent Cereal


It’s most excellent! A can confirm that that this is the only cereal to exist that was inspired by Keanu Reeves. In 1991, the good folks at Ralston, once again came up with another breakfast winner.  The cereal was cinnamon-flavored and had mini music-shaped marshmallows.  A notable promotion was a free audio-cassette holder, shaped in the image of the Phone Booth, and with a sticker depicting Bill and Ted on the front.


4) Breakfast with Barbie


This sounds awkward, like the thing you eat after a sloppy one-night stand with Barbie. Which begs the question: When it’s breakfast time with Barbie, do you phone her or simply nudge her awake? How can you look Ken in the eye after you have a bowl of these colored loops? Basically, the joke I’m implying is you’ve just had sex with a doll. The cereal was marketed at young girls – and creepy old dudes.

See if you can watch the Breakfast with Barbie commercial from the ‘80’s without getting a toothache:


5) Ghostbusters Cereal


Do you really want to think of dead people when you eat breakfast? Brought to the world in 1985, the cereal’s theme song says it all:

There’s a new cereal in the neighborhood
with O’s and ghosts
(Tastes real good… Ghostbusters!)
Marshmallow ghosts… fruit flavored O’s
Ghostbusters taste great with milk and juice and toast
(a nutritious breakfast with the ghost… Ghostbusters!)
What you gonna crunch? (Ghostbusters!)

Every good cereal deserves a sequel; over the course of a few years, Ralston also introduced the cereals: The Real Ghost Busters and Slimer! and The Real Ghostbusters. All three cereals appear to have been the same cereal repackaged.

6) Gremlins Cereal

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The ‘80’s surely were an era for idiotic cereals. This was pitched to kids as a tasty way to satisfy your Gremlin appetite. Legend had it that Gremlin’s Cereal tasted just like Cap’n Crunch. The cereal went away after the movie left the theaters. The only problem with Gremlin cereal; don’t feed yourself a bowl after midnight. The commercial’s theme song will haunt your dreams forever!


7) Spock Sugar Smacks


According to the box, “Space Energy Comes From Sugar Smacks.” Or is it all that damn sugar? In the late ‘60’s Kellogg’s slapped Spock’s face on the front of a cereal box – with phaser pointed directly at the breakfast-eater. Spock cereal turned out to be highly illogical.

8) Donkey Kong Cereal

This involved “Crunchy Barrels of Fun.” The crunchy corn taste, it claimed, will drive you ape. The TV commercial has a monkey and Mario falling out of the box. I’m sure that breaks some sort of health code violation. Brought to the world in 1982 (the golden age of stupid cereal), Again, it tasted just like Cap’n Crunch cereal.

9) Donkey Kong Jr. Cereal

Waaaa? Didn’t anyone learn a lesson from Donkey Kong Cereal? Apparently not because it spawned a sequel. The cereal featured fruit-flavored cereal pieces shaped like bananas and cherries.

Watch the TV commercial and pretend it’s a really bad acid trip:

10) New Kids On The Block Cereal


This cereal was so bad, that Ralston pulled it even before it was released in 1990. All that is left is a bunch of sales boxes – and the magic that could have been…The side of the box trumpeted: “The hottest musical group in America has a hot new release!” Would you want a bowl of Donny Walhberg’s hot new release? I wouldn’t.

This would have been either a great cereal or the greatest cereal ever!

Follow Harmon Leon on Twitter @HarmonLeon