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The Jetsons

The animated television series The Jetsons was the futuristic counterpart of The Flintstones. Both cartoon series, created by Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera, were family sitcoms projecting contemporary American situations into the far-flung past, or as in this case, the future.

George Jetson worked for a short, tyrannical boss named Cosmo G. Spacely, owner of the company Spacely Sprockets. All homes and businesses were raised high above the ground on narrow poles, and George commuted to work in a flying saucer shaped like a Volkswagen Beetle, but with a transparent top. In the original closing credits, he came home and tried to walk the dog but got caught in the treadmill while the dog sat by and watched. This was an obvious counterpart to the Flinstones' closing credits in which the cat put Fred Flintstone out for the night. An alternative credit sequence, possibly produced for a later series - see below - consisted entirely of static captions.

Again, like the Flintstones, much of the show's humor came from the way the cartoon portrayed simple 20th Century living. While the Flintstones lived in a world with machines powered by birds and dinosaurs, the Jetsons lived in a universe of elaborate robotic contraptions, aliens, holograms, and whimsical inventions.

Other Jetson family members included Jane Jetson, the wife and homemaker, raising teenage daughter Judy and preteen son Elroy.

The family dog Astro could mumble, just as Scooby-Doo later on could. This is not surprising as the voice actor for both characters was Don Messick. Astro's best known line indicates impending trouble: "Ruh-ro!"

The original series, of 24 episodes, was made in 1962 but its continuing popularity led to a further 34 episodes being produced in the 1980s. Jetsons: The Movie was released in 1990.