Chapter 32 | Sexist Breakfast

Cereals are innocent, right? Wrong. It dawned on me at breakfast the other day: there are no female cereal mascots, except for that one unicorn I saw on Fruit Loops this year.

Kellogg's Fruit Loops 2019


Here are the Fruit Loops offerings in Australia. Why does female mean unicorn or mermaid? Have you ever seen a female cereal mascot? The only one I could find is Loopy, the mascot for Honey Pops Loops. It’s competitor Honey Nut Cheerios features a male character called BuzzBee, whom I know from my childhood.

Bee cereal mascots

Sources: Loops (Kellogg’s) and BuzzBee (General Mills)

Jezebel tackled this topic in an article in 2013 and another blog The Sneeze tackled this in 2008. If this topic was brought up over 10 years ago, why has nothing changed?

I did some research and found out that there used to be a few female mascots in the 1970s. Did you know that Tony the Tiger has a wife? And the Corn Pops mascot used to be a porcupine named Poppy. Why did they get rid of her?

I want to see a sporty tigress called Tonya and have her body slam Tony while saying she’s strong because of the “well-balanced” breakfast she’s eating. I want to see a non-binary mascot flying circles around Toucan Sam and his nephews, who are a little too reminiscent of Scrooge McDuck and his three nephews.

Cereals aren’t the only culprit here. This topic was originally on my mind because of Clementine Ford’s book Boys will be boys. She pointed out that most character movies feature male heroes.

  • Monsters Inc.
  • Toy Story
  • WALL·E (EVE is there, but she’s secondary)
  • Transformers
  • Cars (Sally is secondary to Lightning McQueen and Doc Hudson)
  • Up
  • Coco
  • Finding Nemo

Here are a few great exceptions:

  • Inside Out
  • Brave
  • The Incredibles
  • Moana
  • Wreck-it Ralph (although the film is named after the man, not Vanellope)
  • Frozen (although Sven, Christoph and Olaf are males)

It’s slowly changing, but still male-dominated and girls are usually “pretty” or “quirky” side-kicks. I want to be positive about the changes. Let’s support and demand more female heroes in our everyday lives!