Theodore Rashid Ibrahim Xavier Rabbit (born December 2, 1959), better known to the world as the Trix Rabbit, is a major figure in the field of active-cereal-based-satisfaction-denial. The rabbit was known for trying to steal the infamous Trix cereal or having his own Trix cereal stolen, only to be confronted by children, saying their sadistic catchphrase: "Silly rabbit, Trix are for kids!"
In the Beginning
Until the Trix Rabbit burst on the scene in 1959, General Mills was having great difficulty moving its gray, soggy spheroid breakfast cereal Crushed Spirit Puffs. Several mascots were unsuccessfully tried to move boxes off the shelves, including a cantankerous otter, a sickly hyena, and an incontinent moose. General Mills was just about to consider introducing sugar into the gray, flavorless puffs when a chance meeting would change everything.
While drinking himself stupid at a local comedy club, General Mills executive Ted "Insane #######" Johnson noticed a stand-up comedian cartoon rabbit that tickled his barely functional sense of humor. Johnson approached him after his set, and the high-spirited, enthusiastic cartoon comedian Theodore Xavier Rabbit was soon destined for cereal stardom. Marketing executives, even those who were not drunk, realized they had a chance to revitalize the brand via advertisements featuring the naturally funny, excitable rabbit.
But Theodore's pilot stand-up based commercial tested poorly, and he was almost let go before execs discovered audiences loved him in a revamped ad where he was being cruelly tormented by spoiled rich white children.
As a young rabbit he witnessed the Dust bowl first hand, after that he swore he would get back at the humans by stealing their children's sugary cereals. Theodore starred in over fifty commercials over the next decade. The storyline revolved around his desire to eat a bowl of delicious Crushed Spirit Puffs as part of this complete balanced breakfast, only to have spoiled rich white children have him arrested, spit on him, refuse to let him eat in the same restaurant with them, prevent him from riding public transportation, or let him vote, among other ingredients.
A particularly well-received episode had the spoiled rich white female child, Mary, accuse Theodore of whistling at her. Sentenced to death by hanging, Theodore is spared at the last moment, with his sentence reduced to a public lashing. As the rabbit is flagellated, Mary utters, "Silly rabbit, Crushed Spirit Puffs are for spoiled rich white children!" and a catchphrase was born.
Steadily, but surely, Theodore became increasingly embittered as the commercials continued. In a now infamous 1968 ad, Theodore snapped, beating Tommy (the spoiled rich white little boy) within an inch of his life, seizing his cereal and urinating on him as he greedily devoured it. An outraged public complained to General Mills, and Theodore and Crushed Spirit Puffs were placed on indefinite hiatus.
For his part in the cartoon beating, Theodore was sent to cartoon prison, where he served seven years of hard cartoon time for assault and battery, attempted murder, and theft of puffed cereal. There, he became obsessed with self-injury and self-made tattoos; in 1971, he was introduced to the Qu'ran and converted to Islam soon thereafter. Theodore would later credit both Islam and its decidedly non-wacky prophet, Mohammed, as saving him from a life of crime.
Theodore also adopted a new, Islamic name, Rashid Ibrahim, though still went by "Rabbit" among his associates.
During Theodore's incarceration, General Mills quietly renamed Crushed Spirit Puffs Rabbit Raisins, colored them brown, and for the first time, added sugar. The cereal did not sell as well as it had during Theodore's ad campaign, though critics responded favorably to its "near edilbility" and its failure to resemble "soggy cardboard", one of the chief critiques of Crushed Spirit Puffs.
The Emergence of TRIX
In 1976, General Mills was a sinking ship. Sales of all their major cereals, such as Lifeless Crisp, Mordibund Mix and Depressing Oh's, were flatlining, and in Q3 of that year, not a single box of Rabbit Raisins moved.
So, when Theodore Rashid Ibrahim Xavier Rabbit was released from prison, General Mills leapt at the chance to bring him back. Teamed up with a radical new cereal what espoused colorful, crunchy, fruit-flavored pieces (as opposed to the limp, drab and tasteless fare that had dominated their lineup), the rabbit and the ceral both became to be known as TRIX, a clever acronym of Theodore's name.
The Golden Years
TRIX took off in a big way following the return of Theodore to the small screen. However, unable to re-use the previous ad theme of abuse at the hands of spoiled, rich white children, General Mills rolled out a new campaign with two mysterious female scientists named Mary and Kay who would test cosmetics and personal care products on Theodore while preventing him from acquiring TRIX.
Typical commercials would have him escape his cage at TRIX laboratories and get very close to a bowl of TRIX, only to have Mary and Kay capture him and subject him to various injections, surgeries and applications of chemicals and unknown agents that were probably not part of anyone's complete breakfast.
Though he never gained the fame or respect of colleagues such as Bugs or even Roger, Theodore Rabbit still lives on to this day, continuing to appear in commercials.