THE CEREAL BOX by David McPhail


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A child coming along to the supermarket and picking out the ""right"" kind of cereal is just what most parents want to discourage, and when McPhail's toddler the next morning at breakfast pulls a whole string of prizes out of the Winkies package you'll be ready to slam The Cereal Box shut. Hang on though -- as the meal continues and the parents preoccupy themselves with the newspaper and the crossword puzzle, the prizes grow curiouser: After the windup mouse and cat come a very live crow and frog and turtle, and when an enormous snake and a silly one-eyed monster (both manageably benign) follow -- still unnoticed by the parents -- it's clear that this whimsical sketch is neither acquiescing to exploitive commercials nor cautioning soberly against them, but simply viewing with some amusement a child's imaginative alternative to human attention. McPhail's black line drawings, with the Winkles box and its contents colored green and the parents so young looking they could be kids playing house, nicely reinforce the light, observant tone.

Pub Date: Sept. 26th, 1974
Publisher: Atlantic--Little, Brown