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DC, General Mills team to bring Justice League to cereal boxes

Justice League: Unstoppable Forces #1

DC Comics has struck a deal with General Mills to include custom editions of Justice League in specially marked boxes of Big G cereals, The New York Times reports. The partnership is expected to be announced at New York Comic Con.

The publisher is printing a whopping 12 million copies of four Justice League books — “Unstoppable Forces,” “Artificial Invasion,” “Sinister Imitation” and “Breakout!” — featuring a classic roster of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash and Aquaman. (And they’re in their classic costumes, to boot!) The stories will begin in print and continue online at BigCerealHeroes.com, where you can get a sampling of the four titles.

The 24-page comics, by Scott Beatty, Paul Tobin, Doug Wagner, Joshua Williamson, Christian Duce, Derec Donovan and Bruno Redondo, are 5 inches by 7 inches and ad-free, except for a mention that they’re “brought to you by Big G cereals.” They can be found inside designated boxes of Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Honey Nut Cheerios, Lucky Charms, Trix, Golden Grahams, Reese’s Puffs and Cocoa Puffs.

The DC Comics promotion, which runs through October and November, will be supported with advertising in traditional media, online and through social media.

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Comments

61 Comments

Good initiative…but why couldn’t they simply put the new Justice League #1 in there ???

* the Geoff John/Jim Lee series

This is how you reach new readers.

I don’t get it. The whole point of the reboot/costume updates was to build interest for new readers. Well, this would be a great opportunity to cement all that into this campaign. Otherwise, what’s the point?

These have been in stores since September. The back of each box has a cut -out Batman mask.

Ummm… So DC makes a big deal of a company wide reboot, makes the big decision to take out the red undis, and then thwy put them back for this?? Oh man… Im iust about done taking these guys seriously…

how many will stay sealed for mint issues?lol

Comics in a cereal box is a GREAT IDEA!!!!

(just as long as it’s not Catwoman in a cereal box…. just sayin’)

Good idea, but seems to be a flawed execution as others have mentioned. Why reboot to advertise last month’s wares? They need to bring consistency across the brand.

It’s because these are the real versions of these characters and everyone knows it.

Reboots are off-putting publicity stunts and in a few years all these characters will revert back to this anyway, because it’s what people really want.

@Wally – Its a question of quality. At least it should be

randypan the goatboy

October 13, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Thats like a blast from the past.I remember when DC comics had a create your own character concept with the pebbles cereals from about 30 some odd years ago

But which Big G mascot translates to which Justice Leaguer? I’m thinking Sonny as Hawkman and Lucky the Leprechaun as Green Lantern…

I’m still more pumped about the revival of Count Chocula and Boo Berry.

I remember that Post contest with the mini comics and scratch n’ win game cards. Great memories.

I’m glad they’re going with the traditional versions. The reboots have to earn their time delivering solid, quality stories instead of being used as licensing fodder right out of the gate.

What a way to rebrand the line…

Wally’s got it right – the fact is the DC comics reboot is something that is temporary – these costumes above are what everyone considers “canon” so they don’t change them. It’s why the costumes will eventually revert back to their usual look. Anyway could have seen this coming.

They put that version of the Justice League in the box because they are the “safe” version of those characters and probably more identifiable for kids. You can’t put the new Justice League #1 in there because not five pages in, Batman curses at Green Lantern for being bright. Can you imagine the furor parents would be in if their kid ran up to them with a comic they got out of a box of cereal asking what “damn” means? I would think this would be an obvious thing but apparently some people don’t take the time to think about why certain choices are made and would rather use ANY news as a reason to bash DC. Real men of genius, I tell you what…

They put that version of the Justice League in the box because they are the “safe” version of those characters and probably more identifiable for kids. You can’t put the new Justice League #1 in there because not five pages in, Batman curses at Green Lantern for being bright. Can you imagine the furor parents would be in if their kid ran up to them with a comic they got out of a box of cereal asking what “damn” means? I would think this would be an obvious thing but apparently some people don’t take the time to think about why certain choices are made and would rather use ANY news as a reason to bash DC. Real men of genius, I tell you what…

_______________________________________

You beat me to it. That is exactly why they won’t use the current version of those characters.

This will bring in the ‘fat kids’, alright. :)

Are there any books in that cereal Khloe Kardashian is on?. Frankenberry, yeah that’s it.
Kids don’t care if superman has on his undies, if Flash has a horrible chin strap and if Wonder woman wears stupid silver trim instead of gold. Getting any comics to kids is a big fat plus.

Martian Manhunter gets screwed again. Classic 7 minus 1, once again.

If you look at any DC promotional material outside of the comics themselves, it has traditionally been either the 1970′s Jose Garcia Lopez licensed art or a more current artist using the Jose Garcia Lopez model sheets. It’s very rare that DC ever uses current DC character costumes in promotional material. Case in point – those dreadful “Subway Heroes” comic inserts used the Jose Garcia Lopez models with a more current artist. I think the only thing they updated was the GL costumes and Batman’s. Any toys or merchandise seems to also still heavily rely on the Jose Garcia Lopez art as well – I just recently purchased a Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman Hot Wheels car set that uses the same promotional art they’ve been using for decades. Even in QLD Australia – go to Movie World and the majority of merchandising, and the art on their rides is based on the Garcia Lopez models.

They’re the versions of the DC Universe characters that 99.99999% of the population recognise and will always recognise as the “true” version. That’s why they keep using them. The only reason the majority of the public can even recognise the updated versions of these characters – think “Superman Returns, Batman Begins, and the upcoming Superman: Man of Steel” and the recent DC reboot is because they’re able to compare it to the licensed DC art they’ve been seeing for decades (and will continue seeing).

This is why I always shake my head and chuckle when they “update” Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman’s costumes AND then feature an ad in the same comic selling Superman Sneakers using Garcia Lopez art. It just demonstrates how transient these “updates” are when you see how much the licensed material outweighs the new stuff.

Like we don’t all know Superman’s and Batman’s undies aren’t coming back…

Dick Giordano was right, there are two kinds of DC Characters: The ones in the comics, and the ones who are licensed!

Great, Catwoman and Batman having sex on the back of my Frosted Flakes…..

Now this would surely kill Marvel positions on Market Share and Money Share LOL!

I think it’s a great idea to reach out to young new readers. They are the future of the industry.

***But here is an opportunity to start fresh with a generation of new young readers and once again they have one white female and 5 white guys on the cover. That’s pretty sad.

Are these in continuity or not? I’m so confused.

All I can say is wow. What a way to get more people interested. I say bravo. Get the kids, they want the merchandise, take them to a comic book shop, they get kiddy books, and parents get the adult versions. Good call DC and not been done in a while. I really think this is going to keep Marvel on their toes and DC is really building for the future and making the industry think outside the box more even though I dont like this reboot and I am not supporting it with my money.

So where did all the Lee-Lines (and crazy Collars) go?

What a great marketing idea.

I saw these the other day. I wasn’t too interested. I’d rather have a Justice League cereal.

Everyone,

These comics were written before The New 52 was implemented. I believe the logistics of getting them produced and into cereal boxes during (or around) the Back-to-School window just happened to coincide with DC’s dash to get its new books out. And yeah, the goal here was to provide kid-friendly, all-ages comics with iconic versions of the characters that EVERYONE would recognize. Hope you like ‘em!

Scott Beatty

If these books had a more traditional, kid-friendly interpretation with just an updated look, that’d be fine. That’d be great, even. But when somebody reads these books possibly gets interested in reading new adventures of these characters and goes looking for them, they’re not going to find them. What DC is doing is essentially promoting products they’re not carrying at the moment. It seems really short-sided to be doing things this way.

But…

Personally, this is just further proof to me that DC knows that New 52 is just an experiment, and they’re hedging their bets in a big way with the initiative. On one hand, you’ve got them promoting classic versions of the characters. So if the New 52 doesn’t succeed over the long term, then the older versions will still be in the public consciousness. On the other, they’ve introduced this mystery woman, which tells me that somewhere behind all this is a storyline waiting to be told. And sooner or later, storylines have to end. When that happens, DC will have a convenient place return to the previous status quo and say, “We never intended New 52 to be permanent. This was what we always planned.”

So, with this cereal box promotion, DC’s just trying to cover all their bases.

Darn… I was also going to say exactly what Scott Beatty said, but forgot in my own hubris. Promotions like this can take a pretty long time because they need to be approved by a BUNCH of people on all sides, because they need to present a good image for a bunch of different brands.

Still, it makes me wonder of these books couldn’t have been altered once the New 52 designs had been revealed. Jim Lee’s Superman design appears to be essentially the same as the one being used in the movie, which means that it had to have been on the table and available for quite a while before most of us knew about it.

But still, I’m all for anything that presents traditional super-heroes for a more general audience.

I simply don’t buy this argument about how comics are losing their audience? The books might be, but the characters are alive and well. I am convinced my three year old son thinks Batman, Superman et al. are simply the pantheon of Gods our family worships.

It’s almost like the Jim Lee costumes are too silly to use on licensed products or something!

@ Jack: Now you know how your Frosted Flakes got “frosted”.

I wondered the same thing – why not go with the new costumes???

Nice promo, though.

But they need to make a total commitment to the relaunch and using the new costumes for this promo would have helped show that commitment.

Who cares who’s wearing what costume?
The fact of the matter is that the comic book industry has been killing itself with this need to produce massive amounts of trade paperback collections of single issue comics for decades. It’s at a point now where even longtime readers are foregoing the single issue purchase. Comics were just fine when I was a kid and there was no such thing as trade paperbacks. The usual example of Jim Lee’s X-Men #1 selling multi-million copies happened at a time when comic readers frowned upon collected editions. In the comic store I used to manage back then, we couldn’t even give away trade paperbacks.
So…in short (after that rant)…
I fully support whatever it takes to bring people back into the comic stores and buying single issues again.

This is corporate synergy fail. Like others have stated, why not pop a scaled down version of the Johns/Lee #1 in there, or at least include the new costumes? In the age of Photoshop, it can’t be that had to go into already completed art and add some collars / remove some undies. Seems like lazy editorial work on the part of DC, and a lack of understanding how to speak with the same message and tone across mediums. Superman should be in the same or darn similar suit whether in a cereal box comic, newstand edition, video game, or movie. It’s not that hard people!

@Mr Beatty – “kid-friendly, all-ages comics ” Ok fine but hopefully that doesnt mean DUMBED DOWN. I started reading comics at the age of 7 and it was the regular Amazing Spider-Man series at the time. Not ”all ages, cartoon like” comics… Just saying… Dont underestimate kids and what they ought to be reading! ;)

Could have at least tossed John Stewart in there instead of Hal…I guess only us white kids eat cereal.

Realitätsprüfung

October 14, 2011 at 7:52 am

Mr. Beatty – thanks for confirming.

It will hopefully prevent further outbreaks of, “OmigodSupermanhasredundiesagain…!” and “synergy fail” and the like. As if a licensing deal with cereal makers is going to redefine their plans for the New DCU. This is disgruntled fans taking it to another level.

You guys just don’t get it. My 6 year old son will go nuts for these, and he will more than likely be able to read them. The new 52 series, while I enjoyed it, is not really for him. This is a great promotion to get the EARLY readers into comics. DC still has more going on than JUST the new 52 you know.

thesnappysneezer

October 14, 2011 at 8:06 am

This looks so much better than the trash one has to pay for. I”m gonna start collecting cereal again.

@ Another Ian
I was disappointed that Hal was used over John for the Green Lantern movie, but that being done using the recent movie version in merchandising makes sense.

Great idea, but I have a question – let’s say kids do go nuts for these comics, and want more after they burn through the six boxes of sugary cereal and the comics contained therein. Where do they go from there? The “new 52″ Justice League, that most people seem to agree a) looks nothing like these comics, and b) is not appropriate for the same age that the cereal comics are aimed at?

@Joseph
I’d say this would be a good start.
http://dckids.kidswb.com/

Nice idea. Hopefully these stories will be better than this most recent “re-boot” tripe the company has been putting out. That fact that they’re using the classic line-up and classic costumes gives one hope.

Do you know which issue is in which box, or is it completely random and after buying 20 boxes of cereal trying to get a complete set, you’ve got 18 copies of one book, 1 copy of each of the next two and are still trying desperately to hunt down ‘Sinister Imitation’ and are getting so sick of Cinnamon Toast Crumch you’re never going to buy another box of General Mills cereal for as long as you live.

@tj9000 – so are kids and/or their parents supposed to know to go to that website? I wonder if there is something in the “cereal” comics directing them there, or if there are ads for the “comic book shop locator”?. Also, are kids who enjoyed reading the physical books in the cereal boxes going to want to read one on the computer? Is the point of these to ultimately direct the kids to digital comics? Finally, the art style (at least on the cover) looks much more “regular comic book” style and less cartoony, like the books you pointed to. I would think any kid that likes the style of this freebie would be less inclined to read the more kiddie styled Shazam, Supergirl in the 8th grade, or Brave and the Bold comics (not a criticism of those books in the slightest).

@joseph
wow, not exactly man. Just saying it took me a simple google search to find that. That particular site offers digital books, and plenty of offerings on how to get print copies, including a store locator. Don’t know about yours, but my kids wouldn’t be as nit picky about art styles. If they enjoy looking at and reading them, then they will absorb many different styles. Plus, do not under estimate the abilty of the upcoming generation to utilize computers and the internet. My kids are 4 and 6, and surprisingly adept on the family computer. Just saying that this promotion is for kids, and there are plenty of options out there for those kids to continue reading comics in a variety of styles and subjects. As a parent who reads comics, I will encourage them.

I totally see what you’re saying – and I agree, kids these days are basically groomed on tech since birth. I know 1st grade kids who are better with a smart phone than their parents are. My comments were not meant as criticisms, just genuine questions that sprung to my mind. I think a lot of the problem with getting kids to read comics is that the companies just kind of throw stuff out there without any real plan. Getting comics into kids hands is relatively easy if you’re going to give them away, but if no one is asking “what happens next”, it’s kind of pointless.

Totally true. Lets hope there are also some ads for “read more comics!” and not just “eat more cereal!”. Funny side note, my family and I were just commenting the other day about the fact that are no more cereal premiums these days.

Yeah, I miss those days of either rapidly eating through or sticking one’s hand into the bottom of a full bag in order to get the toy/sticker/etc inside.

DC is not trying to get kids into comics with this promotion. Good grief. Can’t believe the number of people who believe licensed merch and the comics line have any relation to each other. You guys really do need to get out more.

Ah, cereal promotions…the only places where characters are still in their iconic looks.

Great idea with the cereal boxes- I think everyone agrees with that component of it.

Sorry to break it to the geezers here in the forums, but kids don’t like the traditional costumes: they look old fashioned, and it’s one of the reasons that kids are interested in the comics. They look like something their dad would read.

For those that are claiming that kids won’t recognize the characters in their “new” costumes, you need to get your bi-focals checked. (with the exception of maybe Wonder Woman) the new costumes have all of the iconic characteristics of the originals (i.e. a red cape and the same S logo), no kid will be confused about who these characters are.

D.C. updated these costumes to appeal to the younger generation: the only reason that I can think of for them to keep them off the cereal box is that they don’t want the mature content of the comics to get confused with “kids” comics.

@mike :how many will stay sealed for mint issues?lol

Hi mike,

That was all I was concerned about when I got it. lol It’s will stay in the wrapper until the next ice age.

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