Post’s <em>Beep Beep</em> The Road Runner Cereal Post’s <em>Beep Beep</em> The Road Runner Cereal

Post’s Beep Beep The Road Runner Cereal

Here’s a real Looney Tunes curio: A 1968 animatic for a Post Cereals commercial that was never produced – for a breakfast cereal that never was.

(Thanks, Frank Panucci)

  • It’s all sugared up! (for go!).
    And honeyed up!

  • I think they would have sold truckloads of that. I wonder what killed it?

    But it does present the problem of how to spell “Beep, beep” when in the cartoon it’s really “Meep, meep”.

    I presume that’s a temp voice track and that someone who didn’t sound like they were reading lines from “Dragnet” would have been cast.

  • MadRat

    Looks kind of like Flash animation.

  • Christopher Cook

    That made the Rudy Larriva Road Runner cartoons look like Disney made them.

  • David Breneman

    That “someone who [sounds] like they [sic] were reading lines from ‘Dragnet'” sounds a lot like William Conrad to me.

  • That’s Conrad, all right — “the man of a thousand voice.”

  • I was going to say Phil Hartman but, yeah, it DOES sound like Conrad.

  • Gary Flinn

    You mean the narrator of the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons did this commercial?

  • erik griott

    it sounds like the road runner is censoring the real name. just replace all of the “beep beep”s with the word Sh*t and it’s even more entertaining!

  • It’s interesting to see that the agency artist who drew the animatic was referring to various Gold Key comic books for character poses to “swipe”.
    There are many shots of Wile E. Coyote that obviously were copied from art by Pete Alvarado and Phil DaLara in this!

  • JB

    My guess was Orson Welles, but Conrad is probably correct.

  • Robcat: in the comics of the time, “beep beep” was spelled as such, and Beep Beep the Road Runner was RR’s given name.

    Looks like Post’s intention must have been to model the cereal on the comics, an interesting choice. RR using his wings as hands (in this case, to eat the cereal) is also the kind of thing the comics did.

  • I hate to be one of those “get off my lawn” types but wow, it’s amazing how animatics from the 60s are more expressive and fluid than most finished animation today.

  • Raoul

    Had to be Conrad. Phil Hartman would have been too young in 1968.

  • some guy

    beep beep!

  • Bill Sauder

    Wow, what a time capsule! For 60 seconds I was 8 years old again.

    I’m sure the voice is Conrad’s, he did a lot of voice work at this time, mostly for boys’ toys from what I recall. And the detached, deadpan delivery was actually the style at the time — check out YouTube commercials for the period (live action for toys especially).

    I don’t know why the cereal never went into production, but Warner Brothers was busy renting out the Road Runner to other companies at the time. Chrysler had come out with a muscle car “Road Runner GTX” for 1969 (or there abouts) that prominently featured Road Runner decals on the car itself, and topped it off with a “Beep Beep” horn.

  • I can’t listen to the audio, but I think it have gone to television as is, based of the drawings.

  • Roberto Severino

    Great find, Jerry! Now I wanna be the road runner myself. Funny how they didn’t use the original audio of the Road Runner’s “beep beep” from Jones’ cartoons though. I can really imagine someone taking this animatic and actually animate the commercial using it. It would probably be better than a lot of the cereal ads I see on television.

  • Andrew J. Lederer

    This animatic, as is (and it’s pretty entertaining), is probably better than the upcoming Looney Tunes show. William Conrad’s VO works (and has a different tone than his Ward work). Would like to have seen a theatrical RR done that way.

  • Mesterius

    Wow, this looks GREAT! I wonder if the new Looney Tunes TV show will be half as good! To think that the upcoming series will actually have animation that moves, when instead they could have just used the mindblowing tecnique seen in this masterpiece!

    (Oh well….. still, I guess, the fact that they went for the comic book look – rather than the cartoon look that’s been the standard in almost every LT commercial I’ve seen – DOES make it kinda interesting.)

  • Chris Sobieniak

    I was getting some Gold Key vibes out of this one with Wile E.’s look. It’s definitely of that period.

  • Gerard de Souza

    I don’t think that’s William Conrad. Similar.
    I think it’s just a scratch track.

  • James E. Parten

    It does sound like Conrad, using a voice maybe a tone higher than that which he used for so many years on radio’s “Gunsmoke”. It’s not quite the same emphatic read that he’d use on his work for Jay Ward, but I’d be inclined to chalk that up to an afternoon’s work for ol’ Cannon!

    Apparently, there were a lot of breakfast cereals that got only to the test-marketing stage, and never got out into general distribution.

  • Pedro Nakama

    What a find!

  • Steve Menke

    A lost opportunity to drive millions of parents insane, with their little urchins (of which I was one at the time) demanding “Beep Beep” while roaming the supermarket. (We settled for Qwisp, Great Shakes, and Whip ‘n’ Chill instead.)

  • Chris Sobieniak

    When I think of William Conrad doing narration outside Rocky & Bullwinkle, it would be The Wild, Wild World of Animals. God I miss that show.

  • David Breneman

    Conrad was one of the “go to” voices of authority in the 60s, like Paul Frees or Thurl Ravenscroft. (“Friendly” voices went to people like Mel Blanc or Daws Butler.) This was definitely an “Eat this cereal, kid, it’ll put hair on your groin” type of message. His “Bullwinkle” work was Conrad doing a self-parody. This is much more like his natural “authoritarian” delivery. Find some old episodes of “Gunsmoke” for comparison.

  • Kyle B

    Im deeply confused. There can’t be this many people who don’t know what an animatic is on a cartoon site, right?

  • Funny video! :-D I have to see this movie, thanks for the hint. LOL

  • steve w.

    William Conrad? No way. He had a lower tone to his voice (except when he was working for Jay Ward, which sounded more frenetic). No, the narrator on this did a lot of commercial work in 1960s/70s, but I can’t tell you his name. He sounds a lot like Conrad, but it isn’t William Conrad.

    I wonder what commercial house did the animatic?

  • dr. giraud

    I think it is William Conrad. Wasn’t he still working a lot at W-7 at this time? He also did the narration on the CAMELOT trailer.

  • Mac

    If this was made of All Bran,it really would have been the cereal for those really on the go. I remember laughing out of my seat when a stand up comedian gave a clue that one cereal he saw on the shelf was a potent laxative:it had a picture of Tony the Tiger sitting on a toilet. Actually,Stan Freburg should have been the one in charge of the “Beep Beep” campaign. One spot could have had Pete Puma in place of the Coyote asking for sugar on his cereal:”One lump or two?”

  • Is that Mel Blanc doing the “Beep Beep”?

  • Tim

    It wasn’t well animated. Was it done by WB animators. The Road
    Runner has always been favored by Madison Avenue. Long before
    Time Warner, The Road Runner sold Pontiac cars.

  • Keith Paynter

    Reminds me of Jimmy Kimmel’s “This Week In Unnecessary Censorship”

  • Steve Sbraccia

    This was not a finished product.. It was pretty much an animated storyboad used for a client presentation. And yes that IS Bill Conrad doing the v/o…. He was one of the major commercial voice talents of that era before he returned to on camera in such shows as Cannon and Jake and The Fat Man.