In 2011 Jim Lee, the co-publisher of DC Comics, was tasked with the daunting prospect of redesigning the storied comic book company's iconic heroes.
The results were mixed (underwear-less Superman gets a “pllt” in our book, but Orion and Booster Gold are among the thumbs ups).
But now, in 2014, Lee has faced an even more daunting redesign task … and triumphed. According to USA Today, Jim Lee is one of four artists who took a stab (a gentle stab, using a cereal spoon) at refreshing General Mills’ Monsters Cereals mascots. Lee tackled Boo Berry, Dave Johnson brought a new Franken Berry to life, and the team of Terry and Rachel Dodson resurrected Count Chocula, everyone’s favorite chocolate-chomping vampire (at least until Nina from Eerie Cuties showed up).
As a whole, the images play with light and color technique and the redesigns look more dynamic. It’s as if the Count is ready to sweep you up in his cape or Boo wants to
possess you hold your hand. Frankie looks taken aback, like he’s a little cowardly or shy; Certainly not the classic bruiser, but also notably absent are the sleepy eyes that made him look kind of like of a dumb-dumb. It’s a bold move for a cereal line that nowadays is only available during the Autumn months (because we only want to eat monster stuff around Halloween? What? Or is that when all the monsters are unearthed and want to consume cereals that honor their fellow undead?).
For fans concerned about crunchy continuity, don’t worry – it’s temporary, and the designs are true enough to the originals that Monty Burns will still recognize the carton with the cocoa crypt-dweller as the cereal that “look(s) enough like me.”
In the USA Today story, Lee shares his personal connection to the Boo Berry cereal, but the art tells a more interesting story. For example, now we have a small idea of what a Jim Lee-penciled Casper project (we’re thinking “Spooky the Tuff Little Ghost”) could look like if he ever resuscitated those Harvey properties.
The promotion will hit nationwide in September, with some select distribution before that, and will feature comic strips drawn by Brent Schoonover.
Editor’s Note: Count Chocula is my favorite cereal. I want the year round production back. And furthermore – where the Hell are Fruit Brute and Yummy Mummy?
Step it up General Mills. – B. Kronner
Images: DC Comics, General Mills, Fox