The Flintstones Google Doodle
September 30th 2010 witnessed the Google homepage pay doodle based homage to the 50th birthday of The Flintstones. The Flintstones Google Doodle was fun filled and appeared globally. The Flintstones Google Doodle was drawn by the team’s talented doodler Mike Dutton. In cartoon style The Flintstones Google Doodle comprised of the first “G” of the Google logo being a prehistoric peddle car, in which the characters Fred, Wilma and Pebble Flintstone and their neighbours Barney and Betty Rubble are seated. The prehistoric theme is continued in the second “G” which features a long necked brontosaurus sitting in a pond. The Flintstones Google Doodle was fabulous and a real tribute to the wonderful cartoon.
The Flintstones began as an animated, prime time children’s sitcom. The series was first aired on 30th September 1960 and appeared on ABC. The cartoon was set in the prehistoric town of “Bedrock”, however in the series’ first episodes the town was called “Rockville”. In the Flintstones, long deceased prehistoric animals, such as woolly mammoths, sabre-toothed tigers and dinosaurs, including triceratops and stegosaurus, peacefully coexist with the cavemen stars of the series.
Whilst being set in the prehistoric period, the cavemen had access to all the trappings of the twentieth century leisure industry, pastimes such as listening to records, driving cars and eating food in restaurants. However, in the Flintstones all of these items are completely constructed from raw materials and are powered using a mixture of ice age beasts and dinosaurs.
The series focuses around the lives and interactions of two families, the Flintstones and the Pebbles. The Flintstone family is made up of Fred who works as a Bronto-crane operator for the Slate Rock and Gravel Company. Although he is quick to anger, much to the amusement of the series’ viewers, he is a loving and dedicated husband and father. His wife, Wilma is contrasted to her husband as she is far more intelligent and more emotionally balanced than Fred. The couple have a baby daughter called Pebble, who was born towards the end of the series’ third season. The Pebbles clan is a couple comprised of Barney and Betty, who live next door to the Flintstones. Barney shares a number of interests with Fred including bowling, much to the viewer’s amusement the two regularly fall out but are always quick to make up. Betty is Wilma’s partner in crime, the two have a habit of spending money flippantly and their catch phrase is “Da-da-da duh da-da CHARGE IT!”
Other characters include Mr. Slate, Fred’s equally hot tempered boss at the stone quarry. Mr. Slate is friends with both Fred and Barney, however he regularly falls out with Fred due to his antics at the quarry. These antics have resulted in Fred being fired numerous times throughout the series. One of the series’ running jokes is the forever changing first name of Mr Slate, one episode it is Sylvester, another it is Nate, among others. The series features over a hundred other characters.
The Flintstones was the brain child of Hanna-Barbera. The two spent some time playing with concepts including hillbillies, pilgrims and Indians before settling for the prehistoric setting. When questioned in an interview about their choice, Barbera remarked, “You could take anything that was current, and convert it into Stone Age.” Notably, The Flintstones was the first American animated television program to depict two people of the opposite sex sharing a bed. In addition, The Flintstones was voted as the second Greatest TV Cartoon of All Time by TV Guide, a close second to The Simpsons.
This is not the first time the Google doodle team have celebrated the anniversary of a televised cartoon series. Other cartoons to receive the Google doodle treatment include, The Mr Men, Asterix and Obelix and Popeye.