From the archives: The Morality of Sugar Bear

April 24, 2009

sugarbear_bar

So what’s the deal with Sugar Bear (you know, that seemingly cute character that always terrorizes his victims by chanting the “you can’t get enough of that Golden Crisp” jingle), is he a good guy or a bad guy? While the traditional response is that he’s a good guy, I propose that he is pure evil. He’s constantly stealing the cereal from Granny Goodwitch, and doesn’t her name suggest that she’s a “good witch?” She goes all the way back to the old wild west in an attempt to escape him, but he’s always there, he’s always one step ahead, waiting to crush the hopes and dreams of an old lady. And if he is a good guy, is this encouraging kids to steal?
- Contributed by Joshua L.

Hmm, actually Sugar Bear has constantly walked the line between good and evil. In all of his early commercials he was that defender and not the aggressor. Alligators and other animals would constantly try to steel his Super Golden Crisp and he would eat it and smack them around (think Popeye with cereal). But in his more recent commercials he does indeed steel cereal from Granny Goodwitch, so the question is, what caused Sugar Bear to fall from grace?
-Contributed by Karmacide

Reading this stuff about Sugar Bear’s transformation from good guy to bad made me think that this change was brought about by society’s view of sugar! Originally, the cereal was known as Post Super Sugar Crisp. Somewhere in the 1980’s, society decided that all things sugar were bad (note that Tony the Tiger once sold “Sugar Frosted Flakes”). Sugar was demonized, and dropped from the names of cereals everywhere – Kellogg’s Corn Pops and Honey Smacks were once Sugar Pops and Sugar Smacks – thus the transformation to Super Golden Crisp. Unable to change the name of an established and possibly possible character, the powers that be probably changed the animated ursine’s personality traits to make them more in line with the view of sugar in American society.
- Contributed by Rich S.

Actually (at the risk of dating myself) Sugar Bear was part of a trilogy of cartoons that used to run on ABC in the late 60s/early 70s (?). He appeared in his own episode along with a postman that represented another Post cereal, Alpha-bits, and a lion that represented yet another cereal I have forgotten. In his cartoon, he was a good character.
- Contributed by Ken G.

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