The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones (1987 TV Movie)
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So there is a reason for this plot, which I didn't expect. Bravo.
But some things bugged me. Both shows were satires of our society, but in different ways.
The Flintstones worked because, ha-ha, we knew they REALLY didn't have all those "modern" conveniences and heavy equipment made from animal labor. They really didn't wear tattered versions of our American clothes. And they didn't have TVs made from rock or newspapers made from slate. But it was funny to see them use their available resources to look like us. That was the fun of it.
The Jetsons worked because, ha-ha, we knew we MIGHT have those machines one day. It took our 1960s "modern" conveniences into the future and made them even more so. Jet-propelled grocery carts, automatic tooth-brushers, honeymoons on the real moon. Machines and robots did everything. And it was funny to watch people with more resources look like us.
But I find it hard to mix them. They both ask for different suspensions of disbelief. The Jetsons asks us to accept that we will become so dependent on our machines that we can't even get dressed without them. The Flintstones asks us to accept that we were once doing well enough with rocks and animals. George Jetson might exist one day. Fred Flintstone, however, never did. Maybe there were extroverted, opportunistic cavemen back at the campfires, but no rock televisions. So the Jetson pokes fun at future possibilities, while the Flintstones pokes fun at past impossibilities.
(Spoiler warning) Check this: Rosie at one time uses the time machine to go back into the past to rescue the Jetsons from Bedrock. But she first stops in medieval England, where two jousting knights are on ... horseback, the way knights REALLY fought. But hey, if the Flintstones already had cars, why are the knights reduced to horses?
Really, if the Flintstones were that advanced in Bedrock, what happened? Why the decline?
I mean, by the time of the Roman Holidays cartoon series, we saw that Fred's foot-powered car had developed into Gus Holiday's roadster with actual horses under the hood. What led to the decline next?
I never asked that while watching the Flintstones, but throwing the Jetsons into the same movie brings this question.
Yeah, yeah, I know. It's only a cartoon....
Not without its flaws by all means. To me the biggest flaw was Judy's rock star romantic subplot, that went absolutely nowhere and was practically neglected. It just felt unnecessary for it to be there in the first place when so little was done with it and like it was there solely to pad out the running time. Too many of the characters have too little screen time, some even completely wasted, and with little to do.
Animation quality is uneven, faring better with The Jetsons, where some vibrancy and imagination can be seen, than with The Flintstones, where things look cruder and more rushed-looking.
However, both the Jetson and Flintstone families are immensely enjoyable and are well characterised, especially Fred and George. The terrific voice cast, full of highly respected voice actors who give their all and succeed brilliantly, helps hugely. There are some nice small details as well, such as Fred being given his favourite breakfast as a way of persuasion by Wilma for a vacation.
Writing is very amusing, perhaps borrowing a little some gags from both shows, but the humour is very true in spirit to both shows, corny but often very funny and smart (especially with The Flintstones). The story deals with the fish out of water premise in a way that's compelling and fun to watch and gives a real sense of nostalgia, which are enough to compensate for its relative predictability and one useless subplot.
Overall, interesting and mostly works well. As far as the "Superstar 10" made for TV specials/films go, 'The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones' while not one of the best is a long way from one of the worst. 7/10 Bethany Cox