One of the greatest mascot trios in advertising history lives in the cereal aisle of grocery stores, and yet they remain a mystery to so many breakfast enthusiasts. What do we really know about Snap, Crackle, and Pop, the faces behind Kellogg’s Rice Krispies? If you’ve ever been curious about how the three characters have evolved over the decades or enchanted by their humble beginnings as gnomes (yep, you read that right!), you’ve come to the right place for five bite-sized trivia tidbits.

1. Hey, who’s who? Here’s a quick primer for telling the threesome apart.

  • Snap — He’s the redhead wearing the chef’s toque and red bandana around his neck. Snap was actually the first of the three mascots to be brought to life on cereal boxes. By default, he is also the oldest and a problem solver by nature.
  • Crackle — The blonde middle child who wears a blue shirt and red and white striped sleeping cap. Nobody loves to have fun quite like Crackle!
  • Pop — Last, but definitely not least, Pop is the youngest and a big jokester. He can be spotted wearing a drum major’s shako atop his head.

P.S. If you really need help telling them apart, just look at their hats for their names!

2. Ad agency N.W. Ayer might have coined the phrase “Snap Crackle Pop” for Kellogg’s, but it was artist Vernon Grant who brought the icons to life in the 1930s as… Gnomes? Yep, they were initially designed as elderly gnomes with large noses, ears, and hats for print advertising.

3. As mentioned earlier, Snap was the first character to go on Rice Krispies cereal boxes in 1933. Crackle and Pop would join him in 1941 and the three would receive their first makeover in 1949 to transition away from gnomes into elves with smaller hats, younger features, and brighter colors. They would begin making commercial appearances in the 1950s including this spot for stuffy dolls for fans — and they only cost 15 cents and one Kellogg’s box top apiece!

4. The guys had a lot of famous voice artists lend their pipes to voice them! The original actors included Daws Butlet, Paul Winchell, and Don Messick. Other voices over the years included Frank Welker, Joel Corey, and more recently, Andy Hirsch, Danny Cooksey, and Mark Ballou.

5. In 2013, Snap, Crackle, and Pop turned 80 years old. Now in their 84th year, these elves are popping to life from the cereal box to the breakfast table to make magic happen with Rice Krispies. But first, a selfie — we especially love this holiday campaign from 2015 where Pop and Crackle take quick selfies with snowmen treats!

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