The Flintstones has overcome a green space alien, a Shmoo-laden sequel, a kiddie version and a live-action feature movie aimed at the “remember when” crowd (do those EVER work?) to remain beloved even today. The show has even overcome me, as the focus on this blog is supposed to be on the comparatively-neglected short cartoons that preceded Hanna-Barbera’s gamble on a half-hour animated sitcom.
However, the 50th anniversary of The Flintstones is only weeks away (September 30) so I’ll empty the Yowp clipping file of a few stories and surprises now and then until we get there.
It’s always a pleasure to do a search of internet news stories and spot things from the past that are not only not forgotten, but still loved. Such is the case with those folks from Cobblestone County. The first stop in making our case is the Sixth Annual Bedrock Cruise-In which has wrapped up for another year today in Windham Township, Pennsylvania. You can read a little squib about the event here.
It sounds like the kind of small-town, family get-together that I keep hearing doesn’t exist in America any more. And it’s one appropriate for a cartoon like The Flintstones where even the satire was fairly gentle and parents didn’t worry if their kids were watching it. It also shows you how things have changed in the world of television animation. Can you picture an event with a chicken barbeque and a corn-eating contest centred around South Park?
Alas, I not only missed that event, but another one a Pterodactyl Airlines Flight away from Bedrock a weekend ago. For it was there that residents of Castleblayney, Ireland, set a Guinness Record for the number of people dressed as the Flintstones in one place. Perhaps they have an affinity for Hanna-Barbera cartoons because of all the Irish cops in them. Or maybe they wanted to emulate the lyrics of the theme song in having “a gay old time.” I suspect the word “Guinness” prompted them to celebrate their newly-won bragging perch with something a little stronger than Cactus Cola. You can read more here.
Almost 50 years after their creation, Fred and Wilma, Barney and Betty, Dino and Arnold the Paper Boy (okay, maybe not the last one) still inspire the innocent fun that was part of the old TV show. Considering how fast “stars” rise and fall these days (quick—name the winner of American Idol this year), the longevity of the modern stone-age family is something of modern miracle.
Oh, from the folk at the website Cartoon Scrapbook, here are a couple of .wav files.
RISE AND SHINE [Original theme]
(MEET) THE FLINTSTONES