It’s been a while since this modern stone-age family was a factor of the zeitgeist. Since paving the way for the prime-time animated series, The Flintstones have been in everything from movies to vitamin pills. We don’t hear from Fred Flintstones these days, except for Family Guy references. Then along came this comic book series to shake up the franchise to its core. Not only does Mark Russell renews the franchise for a current audience, he elevates it to a new level of mature satirical storytelling.
The first thing that stands out is the artwork. In sharp contrast to the simplistic, cartoony style of Hanna Barbera, artist Steve Pugh redesigns the characters in a realistic style. This transition shouldn’t work, yet Pugh not only makes the characters visually appealing, but still captures the look of the series. The designs of the animals are a mixed bag. The dinosaurs aren’t a problem, but the pastel coloured elephants and especially Dino are jarring when placed next to the real looking humans.