The best thing about comic book heroes becoming movie stars? The junk food.
I’d almost forgotten about Spidey’s new movie, but there he was, all over Target, waiting to remind me with an assault of dyed-red snacks. Since promotions like this are all about creating awareness, I’d say they’re pretty effective. The best way to keep a movie fresh in anyone’s head is by transforming that movie into a delicious Pop-Tart.
Below: Three ways to eat Spider-Man.
I feel like there have been a hundred Spider-Man cereals over the past few years. I barely qualify them as “special editions” anymore. They always seem to be around, in some form, lying about being limited.
So, what was it about this one that grabbed my attention?
Was it the pretty picture of Spider-Man, spraying water from a trick Swatch? NO, I didn’t care about that.
Three words, true believers: Lizard Villain Marshmallows.
That’s what did it. Those three words would do it for anything.
The cereal is great. I grew up during an era when “movie cereals” were largely terrible, mixing the worst textures with the worst flavors. I came to accept that whenever I asked for them, it was for the box art alone.
But if this is any indication, they’ve come a long way. Picture Honeycomb pieces, but red, and stinking like Franken Berry. Awesome as is, right? Now add Lizard Villain Marshmallows. Do you eat it or do you paint it?
Lizard Villain Marshmallows. They might be the best chalky bits to ever grace a bowl of whatever cereal is made from. I view them more as “charms” than edibles, ready to spread fabulous luck to the fortunate few who hold them.
Course, it isn’t easy to represent things as tiny marshmallows, and what are supposed to be little Lizard heads look more like the faces of discarded space aliens. If you think I’m complaining, you’re so wrong. I just know this had to be a colossal joke at Kellogg’s HQ.
“Heh, we’re calling these Lizard heads, but we know they’re discarded space alien heads.”
Nothing feels finer than being in on the joke.
Next, Spider-Man returns as a Pop-Tart. A “Yum-azing Vanilla” Pop-Tart. The pun doesn’t read as well as it sounds, so make sure you say it out loud a few times.
Seriously, try it. It’s my new source of stress relief. Nothing will ever hurt me so long as I retain the ability to say “Yum-azing” in response.
The Pop-Tarts have a fantastic odor. Almost like the artificial stuff that bakery in Disney sprays around to make you think their cookies really smell so good. It’s the kind of smell that makes you a slave. If this Pop-Tart ordered me to do an impression of a bear eating glass, I’d be bloody and roaring in two seconds flat.
The splatter of red frosting is expected, but the real wow factor comes from the spider sprinkles. They look like amoebae, or at least amoebae through the eyes of Gary Larson. Never really checked to see how accurate he was.
Inside each Pop-Tart is a gooey mess of vanilla sludge. It isn’t unpleasant, but it does pull the overall grade down. Spider-Man Pop-Tarts should have red frosting and blue filling. I don’t care that they made the spider sprinkles blue. That is not enough blue.
Finally, Spider-Man has become Macaroni & Cheese.
Apparently, this isn’t the first time he’s done that. Take note of the webby word balloon on the upper left. “I’M BACK.” This leaves so much up for interpretation. Is that Spider-Man telling us he’s back, or is it the cheesy pasta?
Hopefully, it was Spidey. See, technically, the pasta should say “WE’RE BACK.” I’d really hate for pasta’s first words to have been such a misfire. It’d be like that thing growing out of George’s stomach in Total Recall saying “quail.”
The pasta comes in various Spidey-centric shapes. There are spiders, Spider-Man heads, spider webs, and skyscrapers. I bet the skyscrapers take shit from the other guys for being so different. As God as my witness, I will protect them from bias.
I’m already wondering how much other Spider-Man food is out there, waiting. I wasn’t actively trying to fill my handcart with Spidey things, you know. I just ran into these by chance. Surely, if I kept looking, there would be more.
Or maybe I’m just trying to convince myself of this so I can go on another trip to Target. It’s Friday night, after all.