Out this week is another rock solid Issue of DC’s The Flintstones. The eighth issue of Mark Russell (Prez) and Steve Pugh’s (Animal Man) amazing homage to the classic animated family we all love. The Flintstones is only one of DC’s amazing new comic series based on classic Hanna Barbera cartoons. Others include a post-apocalyptic Wacky Raceland (Wacky Races), the Resident Evil like Scooby Apocalypse (Scooby-Doo) and Future Quest (Jonny Quest, Space Ghost etc).
We start this issue in a flash-back to a time before the modern Bedrock we know today, 30 years, focused on a Hunter-Gatherer settlement. The Gatherers, one of which is Wilma’s mother, are picking berries and wondering exactly when the Hunters will return. Wilma’s mother, has some different ideas about agriculture, and planning for the future to provide more for their tribe. Cut to present day (or technically in the Stone Age) Bedrock Airport, Barney and Fred are dropping off their wives for a visit at Wilma’s mothers farm. Fred ‘N Barn, are left to fend for themselves in a world where their wives take care of the homestead. The next day at Bedrock Middle School, Pebbles and Bam Bam have a guest professor who is there to teach them all about something called Economics. After an unsettling lesson, we find newly elected Mayor Clod “The Destroyer”, being advised by his second in command. Wanting to wage war on the Lizard-people, but lacking in funding, the two start scheming to close a children’s hospital in order to pay for their new weapons. However in order to do so they need to persuade the voters, and what better way than with a celebrity endorsement. Betty and Wilma arrive in Middle of Nowhere, via Slothwest Airlines, and are greeted by Wilma’s mother at Slaghoople Farm. They take a moment to tour around, and reminisce about times past and love one’s lost. Back in Bedrock, Pebbles is reading in her room when Fred interrupts and timidly ask’s her to take over the household chores while her mother is away. Wilma and her mother discuss for the first time Wilma’s reason for leaving the farm years ago, while Mayor Clod is still trying to convince citizens to vote in his favor. His celebrity endorser, Stony Danza, is not working quite as well as he’d like. Later in the town hall, residents have gathered to vote on the current issue and are angry with Mayor Clod. After a rousing speech by Fred, the town votes in favor of the war with Lizard-people thus closing the hospital and getting Clod the Destroyer his shiny new dinosaur armor. After all this Fred, Barn, Pebbles and Bam Bam head back to the airport to pick up Betty and Wilma. Everyone is happy to be reunited with their missing family members, making their home whole once again.
Russell and Pugh keep this satirical Goliath going, with another substantial issue of the latest incarnation, of the worlds most lovable prehistoric family. I’ve been a fan since issue one, Russell frames story arcs in a similar style of the original sitcom cartoon that was suitable for all ages. The present series is geared more for young teens or older, since most of the stories deal with real modern day cultural issues. That being said, it’s not hard to see why it’s so good, Russell has brought the Flintstones back into modern culture. Pugh’s rough and almost grainy style goes hand in hand with the stone age setting. While over exaggerating certain features on the characters, and keeping back rounds authentic to the time period. What is next for this prehistoric family, after discovering religion, aliens, and democratic elections, who knows. I can say with all certainty, that this will be a comic that will go down in history!