The Flintstones: Fifty Years of Irresponsible Driving

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The Flintstones
On Wednesday, I expressed concern that Google's celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of The Flintstones appeared to involve a grisly scene with Bamm Bamm's severed head stored on the roof of Fred's car. My post has inspired some comments, including the suggestion that Bamm Bamm is alive and well and merely ridingup there, as well as a "grassy knoll" theory.

The topic clearly merited additional research. My friend Andrew Leal found a number of relevant images -- check ‘em out.

First of all, as the image below shows, the Rubbles have indeed been known to let their son ride on top of Fred's car -- which is an act nearly as alarming as storing his skull with the luggage. (I still haven't forgiven Mitt Romney for doing something similar to his dog.) Not that Fred and Wilma are doing much better here: They're allowing Pebbles to ride in the front, without a car seat. And shouldn't Fred keep his eyes on the road rather than mugging for the camera?

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Also just plain dangerous -- although gripping onto Dino's head provides some slight degree of stability, I guess.

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Why Bamm Bamm would ever ride up top is unclear -- this image proves there's plenty of space for him in the back seat.

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Much better-both Pebbles and Bamm Bamm are in car seats, and Fred and Wilma are wearing shoulder belts. Pebbles, however, should be in the back with Bamm Bamm. Put ‘em both back there with Betty, I say, and leave Dino at home for the sake of safety. Also: Shouldn't Betty and Barney keep their hands in the vehicle?

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Of course, you might just leave the kids at home with a good babysitter (say, Wilma's mother, Mrs. Slaghoople). I'm not sure why Fred is being pulled over here -- you'd think it would be kind of hard for him to speed -- but it's just as well that the kids aren't along for the ride. (Side note: Barney has brought along his radio -- and it isn't a bird!)

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No kids in harm's way, eyes on road -- the only problem here is that seat belts don't seem to have been invented yet. I wonder if that thing has airbags, and if so, what sort of animals they are?

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The guys seem to have left the girls at home to watch the kids. I'm guessing it's a pleasant break for everyone involved. But holding a bowling ball like that looks like a recipe for disaster.

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Lastly, here's Barney serving as designated driver. (At least I hope he hasn't been drinking -- both he and Fred were known to hoist a few from time to time.)

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What can we learn here?

  • It's conceivable that Bamm Bamm is alive and safe in Google's celebratory image. Then again, if the Rubbles repeatedly allowed him to ride up there, isn't it possible that his noggin was knocked off in a tragic accident?
  • With driving like that, it's a wonder that humans managed to survive the prehistoric era.
  • Fred either owned several cars in various sizes, or owned a magic automobile that could shrink and stretch to accomodate different numbers of passengers -- no matter how many passengers were on board, it was always a full load.

That's probably enough discussion of this topic for now -- but see you on September 23, 2012. That's the fiftieth anniversary of the Jetsons, and I'm already concerned about Elroy's well-being...

This story, "The Flintstones: Fifty Years of Irresponsible Driving" was originally published by Technologizer.

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