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This popular animated television cartoon featured two Stone Age families, the Flintstones and their neighbors, the Rubbles. Much of the humor was based on its comic portrayals of modern conveniences, reinterpreted using Stone Age 'technology.' Most notably were their cars, complete with absence of floorboards to allow them to be 'foot-powered.'Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
Something old - Something new! But nothing borrowed and nothing blue! A brand new idea - an adult cartoon series! THE FLINTSTONES!...a couple just like the folks you know - except they live in the Stone Age!
The Flintstone's top two characters, "Fred Flintstone", (voice of Alan Reed) "Wilma Flintstone" (voice of Jean Vander Pyl) and their nearby neighbors, the Rubble's, "Barney Rubble" (voices of Mel Blanc & Daws Butler and "Betty Rubble" (voices of Bea Benaderet, in first four seasons & Gerry Johnson, in seasons five and six) were originated from the four main characters and with extremely identical personalities, from The Honeymooners (1955). Jackie Gleason was heavily tempted to sue the Hanna & Barbera studio, over The Flintstones (1960)'s resemblances, (in animation) to The Honeymooners (1955) until friends pointed out to him that it might be bad for his current acting career image and heavily tarnish his acting career (from then on), if he became known as "the man who killed Fred Flintstone" & deeply weaken his popularity & acting career, with a negative note. If Gleason did go through,with his extremely heavy thought & temptation of suing Hanna & Barbera, he most likely would have been given the role of Sheriff, Buford T. Justice, in 1977's top theatrical comedy role in theatrical movies, Smokey and the Bandit (1977) & its sequel Smokey and the Bandit II (1980). A Warner Brothers cartoon, Wild Wild World (1960) was also been cited as an additional influence, as a "trouble maker". See more »
In numerous episodes throughout the series, the capacity of passengers in both Fred and Barney's cars changes back and forth from seating two passengers to four passengers. See more »
First season episodes incorporated an ad for Winston Cigarettes into the opening credits (this version of the opening was removed for syndication). Due to the decision to use a standard opening and closing for syndicated versions of the episodes, numerous episodes have incorrect closing credits. Sixth & last season episode debuted with, The Flintstones: No Biz Like Show Biz (1965) dropped the "Meet the Flintstones" closing credit song, in favor of footage of Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm singing "Let the Sunshine In." (a reminder of Fred Flintstone's dream, earlier in the musical program). See more »
In Hungary, the series' dialogue was famously rewritten in prose by renowned playwright József Romhányi, who has made all of the characters speak in constant rhymes. Most of the characters were also given new names that often also rhymed with each other (such as Frédi & Béni for Fred & Barney, and Vilma & Irma for Wilma & Betty), and even the Hungarian title had a rhyme in it ("Frédi és Béni, avagy a két kökorszaki szaki", or in English, "Fred and Benny, or the Two Stone-Age Mates"). Due to the rhyming dialogue and various inserted puns and jokes, which Romhányi's work was notorious for, the series became an astonishing success in the country, gaining cult status very fast, and it continues to influence many Hungarian cartoon dubs even to this day. Romhányi's reasoning for this drastic reinterpretation was that he had felt that rhymes and word-plays would not only add a new layer of humor, but also help non-Americans audiences familiarize themselves with the American themes and jokes. One urban legend even claims that upon hearing of the show's success in Hungary, the original creators attempted to rerecord the dialogue according to the Hungarian translation, however there are no known records to confirm this and it is likely just a rumor. The series was given a modern Hungarian dub later on with a new voice cast, however the rhyming stayed -- although there also exists another dubbed version for certain episodes, spin-offs, movies and specials, which was a faithful adaptation of the original dialogue and featured no rhyming. See more »
None of the other Hanna-Barbera cartoons were this funny--or this smart
"The Flintstones" was so dead-on satirical in its view of a prehistoric suburban world that I don't really understand it when people tell me they liked "The Jetsons" better. There's nobody I can relate to on "The Jetsons", no character who exudes any warmth or wit. The characters here (Fred, Barney, Wilma, Betty, Dino, Pebbles, Bamm-Bamm, Mr. Slate, Mrs. Slaghoople, etc.) have expressions and personalities which are instantly recognizable to an audience. They're a very funny bunch, and they often find each other greatly amusing as well (each character has a sense of humor--and their friendships really do seem like a bond). I don't know why the Hanna-Barbera team weren't able to duplicate the quality of this show in terms of its writing and voice-casting (perhaps it was all a fluke?), but "The Flintstones" has it all: great writing and voices which bring one-dimensional drawings to life, terrific plots, fantastic music by Hoyt Curtin. Not a kiddie show...not a sitcom...not a child-pacifier. "The Flintstones" is a minor miracle.
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