Jetsons Meet the Flintstones


When I was a kid waiting for my turn at plate during afternoon recess at Henderson elementary school, conversation always turned to Worldly Things.


"Did you see Suzy's hair? Her pony tail holder is pink!"


"John got a new SST for his birthday!"


"Ellen kicked me but I only hit her with two spit balls."


"What would happen if Scooby Doo and the Johnny Quest team were in the same episode?"


Cartoon Crossovers. In the great chain of cosmic importance, conversations about girls, cooties, trucks, bikes, and sports fell three links below Cartoon Crossovers. Girls were one thing, but the implications of a clashing of cartoon cultures, environments, technology and characters had universal implications. What would happen if Shaggy ran out of Scooby Snacks or Bandit didn't get along with Scooby?


Important stuff. If Scooby & Co. landed in Johnny Quest's world, they would encounter tough, street-hardened criminal masterminds bent on world domination and the destruction of anyone foolish enough to pursue them. Scooby and the gang might jump into the Mystery Machine, drive 200 yards down a gravel road after Jeremiah Surd only to find themselves blown off the road by high-explosives! Zoiks! Johnny Quest villains meant business and no amount of guest stars (Globetrotters anyone?) could help Scoob and the gang enough to win. And Race, Hadji, Johnny and the Quest team would be unable to work around the bungling of the Mystery Machine crew. Can you spell disaster? Double zoiks!


If Johnny Quest and crew landed in Scooby's world, I can only imagine one thing happening: Quest takes over the world. Why battle villains when you could have the world? Not with an iron fist but through superior technology and intelligence. Scrappy (if in the episode) would be sent off to military school. Scooby and Shaggy would be given their own groovy shack near Haight Asbury and the rest of the crew would be given minor posts in the new government. How menacing is a villain wearing a mask. A mask! Every single episode. Most of the time, the villain was an old guy trying to "scare away a bunch of kids" from his gold/silver/platinum/diamond/etc mine filled with untold riches.


And so the conversations would go.


"How about Bugs Bunny and Hong Kong Phooey?"


"That stinks. Who watches Hong Kong Phooey? Roadrunner and the Super Friends!"


That one had possibilities. The Super Friends have formidable power and would likely take an interest in Wile E. Coyote's continue attempts to eat the Roadrunner and, in the process, fall victim to one of Mr. Coyote's Acme weapons. Poor Aquaman! It is also possible that the Roadrunner would go off with Superman his Fortress of Solitude to practice Yoga and eat birdseed away from the world's harms leaving Wile E. nothing better to do than to take over the world. Or a grocery store. Or a Burger King. Given time, he might even decide to match wits with Wonder Woman and Batman / Robin. Wonder Woman would bring some whoop-ass to the game, but Batman and Robin? This was well before he was known as the Dark Knight...


"What about the Jetsons meet the Flinstones?" This was a natural because it was a collision of the future and the past, of two families of similar size and age, similar pets, and fathers who were owned by a mortgage. Fred did not have a desk job, George did, and both had bosses who were tyrannical, hot-headed, unreasonable, and obnoxious (with voices suspiciously similar). Jane and Wilma had plenty in common -- both had to deal with the crazy shennanigans focused around their husband on a weekly basis, from gangsters to strange space aliens. The Jetsons had more (and older) kids, but each had a dog. Dino was the equivalent of Astro even though Astro commanded a much larger vocabulary.


Imagine the Flintstones dealing with futuristic technology.  No more elephant trunks delivering the hot and cold water. And no more scraped heels slamming on the brakes while navigating nasty 5pm Bedrock traffic. Cars in the future aren't cars -- they are space ships. Imagine that. People movers, machines to fix your hair and your dinner, gadgets to manage every aspect of your life except deskwork. How would the Flintstones adapt? How would Fred get a job? Are dinosaur operating skills transferrable to Gadgets of the Future? Do they have bowling alleys? Is there a local lodge of the Loyal Order of Water Buffaloes? Can Fred order a batch of BBQ ribs so large it topples his space ship? Are there any drive in movie theaters?


Poor Fred, Wilma and Dino. Pebbles would adapt, she is young enough to handle the new environment. But what about Wilma and Dino? Jane could help Wilma, but Astro might be too smart for Dino. Or would there be a spin-off show about their hi-jinx, a variant of the Odd Couple? Jane would ultimately cope, but Dino has only his pedigree to fall back on. Ruh-roh.


Even as a kid I thought that if the Jetsons went back in time to Bedrock, they would be like Yankees in King Authur's Court. Jane (George isn't clever enough) would repackage some of the simplest futuristic gadgets and ideas and rake in the stones/clams/whatever Bedrock currency is. Think about it. A town full of folks using pelicans for dishwashers and porcupines for back scrubbers represents a multi-million (or -billion) dollar market. This might have a negative effect on pelican, porcupine and other work-animal employment, but they could retrain and work for Jane Enterprises. Fred and Barney would hang out at George's mansion playing cards, smoking stogies and talking about zany adventures, maybe do a few episodes of the "The Real Life" or "Pimp My Crib".


Hollywood Suits ultimately did envision the Jetsons metting the Flintstones. I would have rather watched Astro scratching fleas for an hour.

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