If you’ve been following things that are extremely relevant to my interests, you’ll know that this week marked the release of The Flintstones & WWE: Stone Age Smackdown! We’ve shared the trailer and a clip, but I now own it on DVD and thought I’d write up a review. It’s in Best and Worst format, by request. No, I have never kissed a girl, I don’t know why you’d ask me that
Anyway, I sat down with the film and really drank it in, and here’s what I thought.
Best: It’s Actually A Scathing Commentary On What It’s Like To Promote Pro Wrestling
If you watched WWE and Hanna-Barbera’s first collaboration, Scooby-Doo! WrestleMania Mystery, you’ll know what I expected. Cartoon characters do their thing, interact with a bunch of WWE Superstars on the vaguest-possible terms and a small amount of wrestling happens to justify it. When Scooby-Doo meets Batman, you expect a Scooby-Doo episode with Batman in it. You don’t expect a bad-ass episode of ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ about a talking dog that solves mysteries.
Surprisingly — unbelievably, even — Stone Age Smackdown goes beyond a regular episode of The Flintstones and becomes a biting satire of pro wrestling promotion. Fred Flintstone wants to take his family on vacation but f*cks up at his shoot job, so he’s out of money. The next night he finds himself at a charity carnival watching his neighbor Barney be the biggest carny in the world and giving people the chance to step into a homemade ring and fight a dinosaur/kangaroo hybrid in boxing gloves. People get knocked out and it draws a crowd, which gets the attention of local tough CM Punk-Rock. Punk gets in with the Hopparoo and verbally berates him, causing Barney to get in the ring and get between them. HIJINX occur, Punk jobs to Barney Rubble and Fred realizes there’s money to be made in making weird people fight.
He goes around town looking for talent and forms FFE, Fred Flintstone Entertainment. He has no idea what he’s doing and promotes a small show that makes him a little money and garners critical acclaim. He’s got enough to go on vacation and everybody’s happy, but his ego kicks in, and he decides to blow the money on fancy clothes and bigger, crazier shows. He stops listening to the talent, orders them to do things they don’t want to do and buries Barney for being too popular. When he realizes he’s screwed it up beyond repair, he sells out to Vince McMahon.
Fred Flintstone is straight up explaining the life cycle of a wrestling promotion in a 52-minute cartoon for babies.
Best: It’s Also A Commentary On The Convention Scene
During the Charity Carnival, there’s a short scene where ersatz Flintstones Nikki and Brie Bella have set up a “kissing booth” and are charging 100 clams for like five seconds of interaction. Their line is like 20 thirsty dudes in cosplay. They’re from the Loyal Order of Water Buffaloes but they’re wearing furry hats with horns, so go with me here.