I was a big time cereal eater in my day, and I still enjoy popping open a box of Trix or Cap’n Crunch every now and then to recapture that feeling of Saturday morning cartoons and multiple bowls of sugar-saturated cereal before anyone else was up. The 80s, in my opinion, was the champion decade for kid’s cereals, and here my favorites from my childhood. Feel free to mail me a box and I’ll love you forever.
#3: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Cereal
I ate this stuff at the height of turtle mania in the late 80s, early 90s, when they had an early morning cartoon and I was in my TMNT pajamas (shut up) wolfing these down before firing up the Nintendo to play some TMNT games. The cereal was really just rice Chex with “pizza” shaped marshmallow triangles, but this magical combo of the larger textured Chex squares with the sugar shapes hit a sweet spot (pun totally intended). For a marshmallow cereal, this was tops, better than Lucky Charms, better than Count Chocula. Except for maybe…
#2: Kaboom Cereal
Oh man, was this stuff good. These multi-colored smiley-face oat shapes with a liberal amount of star marshmallows were a delicious concoction that spiked my sugar-buzz levels off the charts. The circus theme might have scared off some, because yeah, clowns can be creepy as hell, but I always had a thing for circus, carnival, and big-top themes, so a punch bowl of Kaboom with Big Top Pee Wee or Something Wicked This Way Comes might have been a perfect Sunday morning for me at age 9.
#1: King Vitaman
Bow Down Before the King of All Cereals. Unless you find the old fella on the box a tad creepy, then just eat some cereal. Most people probably found this one boring. Those people have a fair argument, because there were no rainbow colors, no marshmallows, no buckets of sugar or chocolate or berry-flavored anything. But they were dependable, crunchy, and they had a slightly sweeter taste than Cap’n Crunch and didn’t feel quite as heavy or dense. To me they were a perfectly balanced and straightforward cereal, and the fact that they were even hard to find in their heyday made them the cereal I still seek out to this day. I also like how they had the same puzzle game on the back of the box for pretty much 40 years or something. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. I might cheat a bit here and say Quisp was a sci-fi themed similar cereal that I also love that had a similar taste to King Vitaman, but for me, the King was tops, and still is.
Honorable Mention: Nintendo Cereal System
This one gets a special mention because I only recall having them once or twice, but they were delicious and the box came with two bags of two different cereals, one for Mario Bros. and one for Legend of Zelda, which was totally badass. The cereals weren’t all that different from each other aside from colors and shapes and I guess "flavors" (one was fruity, the other berry...wow, what a variety). I wish I saw more of this one as a kid because it felt like it was in and out of stores before you could say 1-Up. But if you were lucky enough to have them as a kid, my congratulations to you. You certainly won breakfast that morning.
How about you? What were your favorites?