Wednesday, June 18, 2003

The Flintstones have entertained the last two generations like few cartoons can. They are not only fun for children, being a cartoon, but they also have enough "adult" humor to make Mom and Dad chuckle, as well. It's "slice of life" comedy, a formula that has always worked for the American people. Just look at the enduring popularity of the Simpsons, now in it's 15th season(or something like that).I have been a fan of the Flintstones since it was in syndication on early primetime back in the seventies, but there is a darkness that sullies my fond memories of this groundbreaking sitcom. That darkness is "continuity". Let me explain.

In the first season of the show, there was an episode called "The Snorkasaurus Hunter" in which Fred and Barney decide to take the girls hunting to combat the rising prices of meat. Their prey is the elusive Snorkasaurus, known for it's beautiful mating call, "Snork! Snork! Snork!" If you have seen this episode, you know where I'm going with this. The snorkasaurus is a wisecracking dinosaur, voiced by Jerry Mann, who befuddles the two wily hunters and manages to befriend Wilma and Betty. The group decides to adopt the creature, who becomes a servant of sorts at the Flintstone household. Wilma's name for him? Dino.

"What?", you may be saying right now. "But Dino just runs around barking at Fred and knocking him on his ass every time he returns home from work!" This is also true. You never see him even take out the garbage, he just acts like a dog for the rest of his career. He is also later refered to as a "dogasaurus", further adding to the confusion of those of us who remember this early episode. Continuity, Mr. Hanna. Continuity, Mr. Barbera. I know you probably didn't think that your show would be picked apart some thrity five years later on the internet, but you have to have some vision. Now I don't know what to refer to Dino as. Is he playing dumb just to get out of housework? Is it something in the water? I know it's just a cartoon, but there are two different stories on how Dino came to the family, Barney woked at a different place every episode, and Wilma has had two maiden names!

I don't ask for much, but I do ask that you write a script that doesn't confuse me later on. Especially when it's a cartoon. If you need me, I'll be reading my Dynamite! magazine in the can.

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