Sunday, December 11, 2016

Nostalgia Theater: The Flintstone Kids Go Back to Bedrock

Last week I talked about A Pup Named Scooby Doo, which took the beloved Mystery, Inc. characters and de-aged them. Well, staying in that vein, I thought I'd look at another Hanna-Barbera series that built its premise on "youth-ified" versions of beloved animated mainstays: The Flintstone Kids. Now, The Flintstones first debuted as a primetime animated series in 1960, and by the mid-to-late '80s, they'd become part of the cultural wallpaper. Between Flintstones vitamins, Pebbles cereals, and omnipresent syndicated reruns of the original show and the ten (!!) subsequent spin-offs, everyone knew Fred, Barney, et al.

And so, in the interest of doing something new and different with the property, The Flintstone Kids re-imagined the Bedrock milieu by positing a "prequel-ish" series that showed us Freddie Flintstone during his grade school days, hanging with best chum Barney Rubble, his puppy Dino, and future wife Wilma. Yeah, I'm not sure why it was called The Flintstone Kids when "That Flintstone Kid" might have been a more apt title, but branding is branding. Regardless, the show premiered on ABC just over thirty years ago, September 6, and here's what it looked and sounded like:

I have a lot of fond memories of The Flintstone Kids, but those are firmly rooted in seven-year-old me's perspective. Each episode was comprised of various longer and shorter segments, including "Flintstone Funnies" and "Captain Caveman & Son," and the whole thing would end up being sixty minutes. There was enough kick in the premise to get two seasons and thirty-two episodes out of before the show left the air in '88 (you can watch it digitally via Amazon). There was even a short-lived Marvel Comic for a little while there. Of course, it wouldn't be long before the modern stone-age family would return to the screen again, and maybe I'll get to that one of these days.

One Year Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Star Wars in the '90s

Two Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Sonny Spoon Edition

Three Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: The Disney Afternoon Dominates Weekdays

Four Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: He-Man and She-Ra Get Awkward

Five Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Mission: Impossible Edition

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