Before this Halloween, if you gleefully said you were eating a bowl of milk bones, your friends and family would either look at you strangely for munching on dog treats, or they would say “honey, get the camera: the dog is talking!”
But thanks to Kellogg’s, now you can finally achieve your dream of crunching femurs into dust without fear of social alienation or a life sentence. Along with Halloween Krave, Kellogg’s 2015 Halloween cereal offering features two new seasonal versions of Apple Jacks and Froot Loops, each with orange and white bone marshmallows that let you build a sugary model of a skeleton.
What do I say to this idea? Boo!
(In the cool, ghost way, of course. Not the “you stink” way.)
Just like with the Krave, the box art here is worth framing, as the lunatic happy faces of Toucan Sam, Apple, and Cinnamon all make me think they discovered some ancient demonic secret for everlasting life (maybe the key is immortalizing yourself in a cardboard box that’s so beautiful no one will want to throw it away).
Pouring a bowl, the standard Apple Jacks and Froot Loops we know and love have been tossed with a generous helping of little marshmallow niblets. Now both cereals have featured marshmallow editions before, but now they come in the form of adorably sweet skulls, arms, legs, ribcages, and pelvises.
The plain pieces taste exactly how you remember: Apple Jacks are a blended mix of sweet cinnamon sugar with just a touch of wild spice and an even fainter touch of artificial green apple. The flavors balance each other well, even if they can be hard to tell apart (do the different colored pieces taste different, or is my mind tricking me?).
Froot Loops have an even stronger blast of sugary sweetness, as the tropical mix of generic “fruit flavor” pulls in notes of fake strawberry, blueberry, grape, and lemon that taste nothing like their actual respective fruits, but are nonetheless addictive enough that you’ll be dual-wielding fistfuls of them straight out of the box in no time. And this time we all know that the each color tastes the same.
The marshmallows, however, complicate matters. The little bursts of vanilla confectioner’s sugar sweetness that they impart don’t mix well with the surrounding pieces’ fruit flavors at all. They work in cereals like Lucky Charms where they can act as cloying land mines to contrast earthier oat pieces, but when all the other pieces are already just as sweet, it’s a bit much.
At the same time, the texture of them is too chalky for my liking. And once milk is poured on them, they immediately turn into sticky, gummy blobs. If you want the sensation of fruit and vanilla, your stomach will probably thank you if you just mix some Froot Loops into some yogurt instead.
Plus, if you use strawberry yogurt, you can pretend the yogurt is actually Psychomagnotheric Slime from Ghostbusters II anyway. It’s a win-win!
But all questionable flavor decisions aside, I have to give Kellogg’s kudos (not the granola bar kind) for another cool cereal gimmick with the bone pieces. Inspired by Dinosaur Dracula’s abstract take on the ‘mallows, I had fun constructing my own creature like I was some sort of cereal paleontologist.
I call him “Bonelord the Pelvis-Headed Dragon.” For some reason he has a skull on his ass, and if he were a video game boss, his Froot Loop heart would clearly be his obviously flashing weak point. I expect George R.R. Martin to work him into his next book.
Oh, and one more thing! The backs of the boxes, along with a series of crossword puzzles that I quickly ignored (I came here to feed, not to read), feature pieces of a puzzle that can be combined with pieces from Halloween Krave to make a bigger picture. As one of approximately 6 people worldwide who actually bought all three boxes, I felt obliged to complete it.
It’s only October 4th, and all these great cereal activities already have my heart smiling a toothy jack-o-lantern grin. Keep it up, imaginative cereal makers! Here’s to 27 more great days!
The Bowl: Halloween Apple Jacks and Froot Loops with Skeleton Marshmallows
The Breakdown: Base pieces are fruity and deliciously snack-able as always, but the marshmallow pieces ruin things with their Circus Peanut-esque texture. But of course, I have to give a couple bonus points for box art and concept creativity.
The Bottom Line: 6 “Bonelord the Pelvis-Headed Dragon” fan fictions out of 10