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Kellogg’s Cornflakes: Tell Me a Story (c.1943)


In this partly animated cinema advertisement for Kellogg’s Cornflakes, the benefits of a fast, nutritious and easy to prepare breakfast cereal are illustrated through a children’s story about Lady Kangaroo and her large family.

Curator’s notes

Packaged into a delightful children’s story complete with animated pictures and anthropomorphised characters, this clever Kellogg’s Cornflakes advertisement uses these devices to appeal to both children and their mothers. By framing the body of the advertisement in a storytelling format (beginning with a twist on the traditional introduction ‘once upon a time, not very long ago…’) the advertisement appeals to children as a story, and their mothers as the children’s carers. Thus it positions Kellogg’s Cornflakes as the perfect family breakfast.

Other advertisements for Kellogg’s products (such as Allbran) produced at the same time, were also sold on being quick to prepare, a rich source of energy, and great tasting (although this is probably as much to do with the added milk and sugar as it has with the cereal). In general, products which saved time in the kitchen or the laundry (the women’s domain) were often marketed to women as miracle time and energy savers, thus freeing up their time for other things.

Cartoonist Syd Miller who is probably best known for his creation of the iconic Australian character 'Chesty Bond’ drew the animation for this advertisement.

The mother in the advertisement is played by singer and actress Queenie Ashton who appeared in musical comedies and television, but is most well known for playing Granny Bishop in the long running ABC radio serial Blue Hills from 1949-1976.