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FLINTSTONES ON BLU-RAY


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#1 of 53 Timothy E

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Posted September 30 2010 - 05:43 AM

50 years ago today, The Flintstones premiered on ABC-TV.  This has not been announced on Blu-ray yet but this series seems likely to be revisited on high definition in the near future.


The entire series has been released on DVD over the last several years.  There is much that Warner Bros. did right with the DVD releases, and a few things they need to correct before this is released again on DVD or Blu-ray.


Among the things they did right were:


1.  Reinstating the correct opening and closing credits for the first 2 seasons.  The song "Meet The Flintstones" did not become the theme song until the 3rd season, and for many years the credits from 3rd season and later were improperly tacked onto episodes from the first and second season.


2.  Including commercials featuring the Flintstones over the years.


The things they did wrong that demand to be corrected in future releases are:


1.  Include the broadcast version of "The Big Move."  The version of this episode that has been released in the 3rd season set, and presumably also in the complete series set, is a shortened, edited version, possibly a syndicated version.  This is mystifying since the complete unedited episode airs regularly in rotation on Boomerang.  It is infuriating to buy a DVD collection with an edited syndicated version when the complete version is readily available.


2.  Provide the episodes in production order instead of airdate order.  For whatever reason, ABC-TV did not air The Flintstones episodes in production order, which created continuity errors:  for example, the episode where Fred and Barney find Dino aired long after Dino was already established as a household pet with the Flintstones.  Another reason why episodes should be included in production order is the artistic evolution of the characters and storyboards, which evolved noticeably over time, but particularly in the 1st season.  The most noticeable change in the first season is that Fred and Barney's noses were originally huge and gradually became smaller.  When these episodes are seen in order of airdate, it is jarring to see their noses be huge in one episode, tiny in the next, and then huge again in the following episode.


3.  Include the Winston commercials and bumpers.  Back when Philip Morris was a proud sponsor of I Love Lucy, the Flintstones also lit up cigarettes to promote Winstons.  I am not a supporter of cigarette smoking by any stretch of the imagination (I personally hate cigarette smoke), but these are a fascinating part of our culture and deserve to be seen.  Some of these commercials were included years ago in the terrific laserdisc set of the first 14 episodes, and their omission in the DVD collections seems to be a reflection of PC bull****.  If the studio is concerned that this will encourage smoking among children, how about using it as an educational opportunity to teach history rather than revise it?  The fact is that people buying The Flintstones on DVD or Blu-ray are typically not children, and in spite of the fact that the studio treats this like it is children's programming, which it is not (the studio seems to have the same mistaken attitude towards Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies), this show was created for an adult audience and primarily viewed as such during its prime-time run (which is why the Flintstones lit up with Winstons in the commercials).  Honestly, if the world did not fall in when these commercials were included on the laserdiscs, does the studio really believe that it would happen now if included on DVD and Blu-ray releases?

4.  Include the stone-age style ABC-TV credit that appeared originally at the end of the closing credits.  If the laserdisc collection could include this, there seems little reason why the DVD and Blu-ray cannot include this as well.


5.  Give us the Busch Beer episode.  In or about 1966, a Flintstones cartoon was made with Fred and Barney promoting Busch Beer.  Stop pretending this is a children's show.  Much of the Hanna Barbera programming that came after the Flintstones was dumbed down for children but the Flintstones was not in its original incarnation.


6.  The movie The Man Called Flintstone was released during the same era as the TV series and should be included, UNEDITED, on any complete series collection.  By unedited, I mean including the animated Columbia logo with Wilma Flintstone posed as Columbia's lady liberty.  The DVD cut this logo out.  I think that Warner Brothers, which is arguably, the most successful film studio in the world releasing this film on DVD can afford to acknowledge the existence of a competitor(Columbia), particularly when the logo in question is artistically interesting and is arguably the funniest gag in the film.


7.  Give us better artwork on the packaging.  These DVDs and Blu-rays might actually sell better if you give the consumer something better than the generic version of the characters.  The laserdisc collection gave us some beautiful John Kricfalusi artwork with an illustrated booklet with more great artwork.  I am sure that the artists who did the final artwork on the DVD collections are fine artists, but how about giving the consumer artwork of the characters that reflects their appearances during those seasons?  The laserdisc collection came much closer to that than the DVD sets.


Does anybody else out there agree with me?  Or disagree?


Before I get off my soapbox, allow me to comment on the DVD releases of those other prime-time H-B cartoons from the 1960s, The Jetsons and Jonny Quest, and suggest what needs to be corrected on future releases:


The Jetsons:  This first season set was almost perfect.  I was ecstatic that the studio reinstated the original closing credits with George walking Astro, screaming "Jane, stop this crazy thing!"  In the early 1980s, these terrific closing credits were chopped off in syndication and replaced with then-modern credits to match the new episodes being produced at that time.  The only thing that W-B did wrong with this set, other than the character design on the packaging (too generic), is they left in the title cards created in the 1980s with the 1980s character design.  (There really is a difference and fans can tell.)  Please fix this on future releases.


Jonny Quest:
1.  Please give us these episodes as originally aired.  Dialogue cuts in 2 episodes on DVD are not acceptable to fans.  You can see the character's lips moving but there is no sound.  In "Monster In The Monastery", Jonny's line "Uh oh, here comes the Oriental Express" was cut.  In "Pursuit of the Poho", Race's lines are cut where he says "heathen monkeys" and "ignorant savages."  The strange thing is that the same studio also released Freakazoid! on DVD which had the same lines used as a parody of Jonny Quest in the "Toby Danger" episode.  If the same thing can be said on Freakazoid!, it should be acceptable on Jonny Quest.  Remember, this show was directed more to adults than to children, and we can always use this as a teaching opportunity to educate, rather than conceal history, which only allows past mistakes to be repeated into the future.


2.  Please give us the original opening and closing credits.  Different artists were credited on different episodes of the closing credits, and most of the episodes have the wrong closing credits attached.  The DVD gives the impression that the same screenwriter wrote every episode, which is not the case.  The very end of the opening credits were also snipped on the DVD where there is a fade to black, fade back in with the Jonny Quest logo and the narrator stating "Jonny Quest."


3.  Give us artwork on the packaging that reflects the character design from that time (too generic on the release version).


And how about keeping the original Screen Gems logo at the end of these series?  (And if you leave out the modern Cartoon Network credit that is now on the DVDs, that would really be a plus.  I love the Cartoon Network but I find that 3 second credit sequence to be one of the most obnoxious and annoying credits ever.)



#2 of 53 Corey3rd

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Posted September 30 2010 - 08:18 AM

Did you not notice how many Flintstones season sets ended up at Big Lots that were supposed to be destroyed? Hard to think Warners is going Blu-ray crazy at this point. It's not even like Warners is putting a celebration of the Flintstones on Cartoon Network tonight- it's SD Boomerang.


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#3 of 53 Xenia Stathakopoulou

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Posted September 30 2010 - 08:53 AM

The world economy is really bad right now, but I wouldnt count out seeing flintstones blu rays in a few years down the line.


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#4 of 53 Guest__*

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Posted September 30 2010 - 08:54 AM

Dukes of Hazzard ended up at Big Lots too (several seasons) and that was a big hit on dvd.



#5 of 53 Nelson Au

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Posted September 30 2010 - 10:20 AM

I was a huge fan of the original as a little kid in the 60's.


I bought the one box set laserdisc and I only got the first season on DVD. So it would be cool to see it on BD. But from you guys are saying, it sounds like it won't happen or it won't be for a while.



#6 of 53 ChrisALM

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Posted September 30 2010 - 01:20 PM

I would look forward to the Bluray treatment for The Flinstones, The Jetsons, Jonny Quest and, in addition, Top Cat. Restoring these shows, fully uncut, would be the only way to go. Including all of the commercials would be great, too. I do wonder how realistic a Bluray release is for these shows, though. We have had no Looney Tunes on Bluray. In fact, the latest SD releases look like a step backward.



#7 of 53 dana martin

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Posted September 30 2010 - 02:08 PM



Originally Posted by Timothy E 

50 years ago today, The Flintstones premiered on ABC-TV.  This has not been announced on Blu-ray yet but this series seems likely to be revisited on high definition in the near future.


The entire series has been released on DVD over the last several years.  There is much that Warner Bros. did right with the DVD releases, and a few things they need to correct before this is released again on DVD or Blu-ray.


Among the things they did right were:


1.  Reinstating the correct opening and closing credits for the first 2 seasons.  The song "Meet The Flintstones" did not become the theme song until the 3rd season, and for many years the credits from 3rd season and later were improperly tacked onto episodes from the first and second season.


2.  Including commercials featuring the Flintstones over the years.


The things they did wrong that demand to be corrected in future releases are:


1.  Include the broadcast version of "The Big Move."  The version of this episode that has been released in the 3rd season set, and presumably also in the complete series set, is a shortened, edited version, possibly a syndicated version.  This is mystifying since the complete unedited episode airs regularly in rotation on Boomerang.  It is infuriating to buy a DVD collection with an edited syndicated version when the complete version is readily available.


2.  Provide the episodes in production order instead of airdate order.  For whatever reason, ABC-TV did not air The Flintstones episodes in production order, which created continuity errors:  for example, the episode where Fred and Barney find Dino aired long after Dino was already established as a household pet with the Flintstones.  Another reason why episodes should be included in production order is the artistic evolution of the characters and storyboards, which evolved noticeably over time, but particularly in the 1st season.  The most noticeable change in the first season is that Fred and Barney's noses were originally huge and gradually became smaller.  When these episodes are seen in order of airdate, it is jarring to see their noses be huge in one episode, tiny in the next, and then huge again in the following episode.


3.  Include the Winston commercials and bumpers.  Back when Philip Morris was a proud sponsor of I Love Lucy, the Flintstones also lit up cigarettes to promote Winstons.  I am not a supporter of cigarette smoking by any stretch of the imagination (I personally hate cigarette smoke), but these are a fascinating part of our culture and deserve to be seen.  Some of these commercials were included years ago in the terrific laserdisc set of the first 14 episodes, and their omission in the DVD collections seems to be a reflection of PC bull****.  If the studio is concerned that this will encourage smoking among children, how about using it as an educational opportunity to teach history rather than revise it?  The fact is that people buying The Flintstones on DVD or Blu-ray are typically not children, and in spite of the fact that the studio treats this like it is children's programming, which it is not (the studio seems to have the same mistaken attitude towards Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies), this show was created for an adult audience and primarily viewed as such during its prime-time run (which is why the Flintstones lit up with Winstons in the commercials).  Honestly, if the world did not fall in when these commercials were included on the laserdiscs, does the studio really believe that it would happen now if included on DVD and Blu-ray releases?

4.  Include the stone-age style ABC-TV credit that appeared originally at the end of the closing credits.  If the laserdisc collection could include this, there seems little reason why the DVD and Blu-ray cannot include this as well.


5.  Give us the Busch Beer episode.  In or about 1966, a Flintstones cartoon was made with Fred and Barney promoting Busch Beer.  Stop pretending this is a children's show.  Much of the Hanna Barbera programming that came after the Flintstones was dumbed down for children but the Flintstones was not in its original incarnation.


6.  The movie The Man Called Flintstone was released during the same era as the TV series and should be included, UNEDITED, on any complete series collection.  By unedited, I mean including the animated Columbia logo with Wilma Flintstone posed as Columbia's lady liberty.  The DVD cut this logo out.  I think that Warner Brothers, which is arguably, the most successful film studio in the world releasing this film on DVD can afford to acknowledge the existence of a competitor(Columbia), particularly when the logo in question is artistically interesting and is arguably the funniest gag in the film.


7.  Give us better artwork on the packaging.  These DVDs and Blu-rays might actually sell better if you give the consumer something better than the generic version of the characters.  The laserdisc collection gave us some beautiful John Kricfalusi artwork with an illustrated booklet with more great artwork.  I am sure that the artists who did the final artwork on the DVD collections are fine artists, but how about giving the consumer artwork of the characters that reflects their appearances during those seasons?  The laserdisc collection came much closer to that than the DVD sets.


Does anybody else out there agree with me?  Or disagree?


Before I get off my soapbox, allow me to comment on the DVD releases of those other prime-time H-B cartoons from the 1960s, The Jetsons and Jonny Quest, and suggest what needs to be corrected on future releases:


The Jetsons:  This first season set was almost perfect.  I was ecstatic that the studio reinstated the original closing credits with George walking Astro, screaming "Jane, stop this crazy thing!"  In the early 1980s, these terrific closing credits were chopped off in syndication and replaced with then-modern credits to match the new episodes being produced at that time.  The only thing that W-B did wrong with this set, other than the character design on the packaging (too generic), is they left in the title cards created in the 1980s with the 1980s character design.  (There really is a difference and fans can tell.)  Please fix this on future releases.


Jonny Quest:
1.  Please give us these episodes as originally aired.  Dialogue cuts in 2 episodes on DVD are not acceptable to fans.  You can see the character's lips moving but there is no sound.  In "Monster In The Monastery", Jonny's line "Uh oh, here comes the Oriental Express" was cut.  In "Pursuit of the Poho", Race's lines are cut where he says "heathen monkeys" and "ignorant savages."  The strange thing is that the same studio also released Freakazoid! on DVD which had the same lines used as a parody of Jonny Quest in the "Toby Danger" episode.  If the same thing can be said on Freakazoid!, it should be acceptable on Jonny Quest.  Remember, this show was directed more to adults than to children, and we can always use this as a teaching opportunity to educate, rather than conceal history, which only allows past mistakes to be repeated into the future.


2.  Please give us the original opening and closing credits.  Different artists were credited on different episodes of the closing credits, and most of the episodes have the wrong closing credits attached.  The DVD gives the impression that the same screenwriter wrote every episode, which is not the case.  The very end of the opening credits were also snipped on the DVD where there is a fade to black, fade back in with the Jonny Quest logo and the narrator stating "Jonny Quest."


3.  Give us artwork on the packaging that reflects the character design from that time (too generic on the release version).


And how about keeping the original Screen Gems logo at the end of these series?  (And if you leave out the modern Cartoon Network credit that is now on the DVDs, that would really be a plus.  I love the Cartoon Network but I find that 3 second credit sequence to be one of the most obnoxious and annoying credits ever.)



Amen, when it is done correctly, this way on blu, then i will buy it, just like Batman:TAS needs adressed this way, Primetime show, not a syndicated saturday morning version


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#8 of 53 LeoA

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Posted September 30 2010 - 06:53 PM

It's my understanding that a episode or two on the DVD's had the incorrect title opening (And perhaps closing) used. So that would be another minor problem that should be fixed if the series ever is released on home video again.


"The movie The Man Called Flintstone was released during the same era as the TV series and should be included, UNEDITED, on any complete series collection.  By unedited, I mean including the animated Columbia logo with Wilma Flintstone posed as Columbia's lady liberty.  The DVD cut this logo out."


Didn't it have more problems then just that? I thought the DVD was 4:3 while the movie was originally in a widescreen aspect ratio (Like the iTunes download of it)?


Or was it created fullscreen to start with like Snoopy Come Home and just had the top and bottom of the frames lopped off for the theatrical release?



#9 of 53 Corey3rd

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Posted October 01 2010 - 01:22 AM



Originally Posted by LeoAmes 

Or was it created fullscreen to start with like Snoopy Come Home and just had the top and bottom of the frames lopped off for the theatrical release?



That is how a majority of non-Cinemascope films are presented as 1.85 widescreen in the movie theaters. They put a matte in the projector to give it that aspect ratio, but in reality the movie fills the entire frame. Look up a good website that breaks down the process.


Far as Dukes of Hazard at Big Lots go, the ones I remember seeing in the rack were for the later seasons which are normally the worst selling.


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#10 of 53 darkrock17

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Posted October 07 2010 - 08:23 PM

I agree that The Flintstones should be on Blu-Ray as well as all the earlier HB series. My sets right now are not looking so well for 5 years old as the cel packing is starting to flake off.


#11 of 53 Guest__*

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Posted July 25 2011 - 11:22 AM

Some of the episodes of The Flinstones skip on my copies due to scratches. I hate flipper discs! I wish they would correct all of these errors as this is my most beloved animated series.



#12 of 53 Timothy E

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Posted September 30 2012 - 07:36 AM

Well, tonight marks 52 years since The Flintstones premiered on ABC-TV and 2 years since I began this thread.  The Flintstones has not been announced for release on Blu-ray in the last 2 years.


Seth MacFarlane was developing an animated remake of The Flintstones for some time, but that project may never see the light of day.  A new Flintstones TV series on the air might help to expedite a release of the original series on Blu-ray.


Every home video format, from VHS, Beta, laserdisc, and DVD seem to follow similar patterns with the TV shows that get released first in each new format.  Star Trek, The Twilight Zone, The Dick Van Dyke Show, and The Flintstones have typically been among the first TV series released in those formats due to the popularity of each series, so perhaps we will yet see The Flintstones on Blu-ray in the near future.



#13 of 53 Mark Collins

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Posted October 01 2012 - 07:49 AM

Hi Timothy, I very much wanted to post here when I read what you had to say about the Flintstones Sunday. I was a very big fan of the show as a kid when it first ran. I even have an early memory of a commercial on ABC to watch for the first Adult Cartoon. The funny thing is that is all I remember. The next memory was my best friend and I allowed to watch the show on black and white TV set. The show was one of the few leading up to Pebbles birth. I then remember when color TV's came out and everyone said you must see the Flintstones in color. I had a very nice Aunt who had a color set and allowed me to watch one episode. I used to collect all the cartoons from the Chicago Sunday papers and all the comic books plus the Flintstone candy cigarettes. I even had the grape jelly glasses bubble bath anything to do with Flintstones. I gave them all up at a garage sale. I remember of course the last years of the show and hated when Bea Benaderet left the show. The show went right into syndication when it ended. You Tube has the opening for that syndicated run and a great deal of Flintstone clips. I wish they had been included in the DVD set. I simply loved the show. I and my Grandfather would watch it together when the show went into syndication. I saw episodes I had never seen or should i say never remembered watching. I also remember Saturday mornings NBC had took some of the episodes from the syndicated deal. I would watch those episodes and even taped episodes on my reel to reel tape recorder. I did tape over them with Dark Shadows ep. I remember NBC brought the show back for just a few episodes at night i think 1977. I watched Pebbles and Bam Bam and the Flintstone Comedy Hour. Alan Reed passed away after those shows and I just could never get used to the new Fred. I had one friend say to me this. The Flintstones were more popular to us kids then Disney cartoons. I am sorry to report this is the latest info on the show from Gord and Dave. http://www.tvshowson...te-Series/17452

#14 of 53 Nelson Au

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Posted October 01 2012 - 09:14 AM

I played the first 4 episodes yesterday! Poor Barney.

#15 of 53 Carabimero

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Posted October 03 2012 - 11:50 AM

I'm a huge FLINTSTONES fan. But...since THE FLINTSTONES is animated, and the animation was done in the 60s, how much better would it really look on Blu-Ray? That is, how much more significant detail is there in terms of intricate clarity in the animation that wasn't captured on DVD? Of course I know it would look better, but would it look THAT much better? Thanks for any information.

#16 of 53 Guest__*

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Posted October 03 2012 - 05:23 PM

It was shot on 35mm film, so yes it would look significantly better as any film would. The colors would also be better, if the source material looks good. The dvds had very good color.



#17 of 53 mrz7

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Posted October 03 2012 - 05:38 PM

I'm a huge FLINTSTONES fan. But...since THE FLINTSTONES is animated, and the animation was done in the 60s, how much better would it really look on Blu-Ray? That is, how much more significant detail is there in terms of intricate clarity in the animation that wasn't captured on DVD? Of course I know it would look better, but would it look THAT much better? Thanks for any information.

Often when comparing Blu-Ray vs. DVD.....alot of people just focus on the clarity of the picture. From what I read (somewhere on another thread here on the forum) the Home Video Industry can put alot of these classic T.V. shows on Blu-Ray, and it will have some effect to picture quality, but a show like "All In The Family" (which was filmed on videotape) will not show much improvement because of the way it was filmed. The Home Video industry will avoid putting something like this scenario on video, because the average consumer would not notice a big difference. However, there is one thing about Blu-Ray disc that are not talked about that much when comparing it to DVD. My understanding of the physical traits of the Blu-Ray discs are scratch resistant. Whereas DVDs (and for that matter CD's) can easily be scratched, and therefore life expectancy on a Blu-Ray disc is much longer than a DVD or CD. I just wish the Home Video Industry would mention this more as why Blu-Ray is a better media source than DVD's. But for some reason, they focus on the picture clarity (enhanced) than the other attributes Blu-Ray offers. Now, though I don't mind DVD's (I take good care of mine), but when your are investing money in a collection (of movies, classic TV etc), I would much rather have them on Blu-Ray, for the fact that Blu-Ray is a better media source for storage based on the life expectancy of the disc from getting damaged. Just food for thought. :)

#18 of 53 Carabimero

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Posted October 03 2012 - 06:17 PM

That's a good point. For me, however, having already invested in the complete Flintstones series, I need a larger inducement to double dip. Thanks for your thoughtful post.

#19 of 53 Mark-P

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Posted October 03 2012 - 07:11 PM

I'm a huge FLINTSTONES fan. But...since THE FLINTSTONES is animated, and the animation was done in the 60s, how much better would it really look on Blu-Ray? That is, how much more significant detail is there in terms of intricate clarity in the animation that wasn't captured on DVD? Of course I know it would look better, but would it look THAT much better? Thanks for any information.

Actually the DVDs showed way more detail than the original broadcasts. What really stands out is cell dust, fingerprints, smudges and so forth. Hanna-Barbera was on such a limited budget that the cel-work was really sloppy, compared to Disney. I can only imagine how much more the imperfections would show up on Blu-ray!

#20 of 53 Carabimero

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Posted October 03 2012 - 07:15 PM

Great point. Plus, there's hardly more detail coming from the animation images to compensate for all the smudges higher resolution will bring out.




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