Fred Flintstone

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Fred Flintstone
The Flintstones character
Fred Flintstone.png
First appearance The Flagstones (1959)
Created by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera
Portrayed by John Goodman
(The Flintstones)
Mark Addy
(The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas)
Voiced by Daws Butler (Pilot, 1959)
Alan Reed (1960–1977)
Henry Corden (1977–2005)
Lennie Weinrib/Scott Menville (The Flintstone Kids)
Jeff Bergman (1999–present)
Scott Innes (Toshiba commercial)
Maurice LaMarche (Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law)
James Arnold Taylor (2005–2011)
Stephen Stanton/Dave Coulier (Robot Chicken)
Information
Aliases Frederick J. Flintstone
Fred W. Flintstone
"Twinkletoes" (bowling nickname)
Species Caveman
Gender Male
Occupation Crane operator
Police officer[1]
Family Ed Flintstone (father)[2]
Eithne (Edna) Flintstone (mother)[2]
Stony Flintstone (Paternal grandfather)[2]
James Hardrock (Maternal grandfather)
Lucille Fangstone-Hardrock (Maternal grandmother)
Tex Hardrock (uncle)[3]
Jemina (aunt)
Giggles Flintstone (uncle)[4]
Hatrock (uncle)[5]
Zeke Flintstone (great-great-uncle)[6]
Rockbottom K.(Rocky) Flintstone (Paternal grandfather)[7]
Granny Flintstone (Paternal Grandmother)
Jed Flintstone (great-grandfather)[6]
Tumbleweed (cousin)[8]
Mary Lou Jim (cousin)[8]
Pearl Slaghoople (mother-in-law)
Ricky Slaghoople (father-in-law)[2]
Bamm-Bamm Rubble (godson/son-in-law)
Roxy Rubble (granddaughter)[9]
Chip Rubble (grandson)[9]
Spouse(s) Wilma Flintstone (wife)
Children Pebbles Flintstone (daughter)
Stony Flintstone (adopted son)[10]

Frederick "Fred" Flintstone, also known as Fred W. Flintstone or Frederick J. Flintstone,[citation needed] is the protagonist of the animated sitcom The Flintstones, which aired during prime-time on ABC during the original series' run from 1960 to 1966. Fred is the husband of Wilma Flintstone and father of Pebbles Flintstone. His best friends are his next door neighbors, Barney and Betty Rubble, who have an adopted son named Bamm-Bamm.[11]

Fred lives in the fictional prehistoric town of Bedrock, a world where dinosaurs coexist with modernized cavepeople and the cavepeople enjoy "primitive" versions of modern conveniences such as telephones, automobiles, and washing machines. Fred's trademark yell is "yabba dabba doo!", a phrase that was originally his club's cheer and later adopted as part of the theme song from the third series on and used in the 1994 live-action Flintstones movie.

Since the original series' run, Fred has since appeared in various other cartoon spinoffs, live action adaptations, music videos, and commercials.

Biography[edit]

While the mid-1980s spin-off series The Flintstone Kids depicts Fred as a child, the series may be apocryphal due to its presenting Wilma as a childhood friend of Fred and Barney; the original series asserts that they first met as young adults.[12] Still, the series' depictions that Fred is the only child of Ed and Edna Flintstone (a handyman and a homemaker, respectively) might be taken as canon.

As young adults, Fred and Barney worked as bellhops at a resort. There, they meet and fall in love with Wilma and Betty, who were working there as cigarette girls. Wilma's mother, Pearl Slaghoople, also met her future son-in-law, and took an instant disliking toward Fred (and vice versa), starting a long-lasting rivalry between the two.[12] An unspecified amount of time later, Fred married Wilma.

Fred is a typical blue-collar worker, who works as a "bronto crane operator" at Slate Rock and Gravel Company (also known as Rockhead and Quarry Cave Construction Company in earlier episodes). Fred's job title in the second season episode "Divided We Sail" is "geological engineer".[13]

During the original series' third season, Wilma gives birth to the couple's daughter, Pebbles. Years later, when Pebbles is a teenager, Fred and Barney join the Bedrock police force for a time as part-time police officers.[1] Eventually, Fred becomes a grandfather to the adult Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm's twins, Chip and Roxy. Fred's family grew again in A Flintstone Family Christmas, when he and Wilma adopted an orphaned caveboy named Stony, and despite a rough start, Fred and his new son bonded well.

Relatives[edit]

The Flintstone family's paternal side originally came from the prehistoric U.S. state of Arkanstone, where they had been engaged in a feud similar to the Hatfield-McCoy feud. The feud was originally started by an ancestor of Fred's making a joke about a Hatrock family portrait ("I don't know what the artist got for doing that painting, but he should've gotten life!"). In the fourth season episode "Bedrock Hillbillies," the feud is ended when Fred helps rescue Pebbles and a Hatrock baby, only to start up again when Fred makes the same joke as his ancestor. The Hatrocks later appear in the follow-up fifth season episode "The Hatrocks and the Gruesomes", where they visit Bedrock. The last of the Arkanstone Flintstones was Fred's great-great-uncle Zeke Flintstone.

Other relatives of Fred include: Giggles Flintstone, a rich, eccentric practical joker whose jokes drive Fred into a mad rage;[4] Uncle Tex Hardrock, Fred's rich Texan uncle;[3] Tumbleweed and Mary Lou Jim, Fred's rich Texan cousins;[8] Rockbottom "Rocky" Flintstone, Fred's grandfather, who was a veteran of Stone World War One;[7] Stony Flintstone, Fred's grandfather and James Hardrock, Edna's father.

Personality[edit]

Fred's personality was based on that of Ralph Kramden of the 1950s television series The Honeymooners and Chester A. Riley from The Life of Riley, both of whom were originally portrayed on television by Jackie Gleason (Riley was originally portrayed on radio, film and later television episodes by William Bendix). Much like Ralph, Fred tends to be loud-mouthed, aggressive, and constantly scheming ways to improve his family's working class lot in life, often with unintended results. Also like Ralph, despite his harshness, he has a loving heart, who is very devoted to his family and cares a lot about his best friend and next door neighbor Barney Rubble. Fred loses his temper easily and is very impatient, but he seems free of malice and never holds a grudge. Although his loudness irritates the people around him, Fred proves friendly, often going out of his way to help others. Also, although Fred often annoys Wilma with his immaturity, he is known to go to great lengths to please his family and apologize when he goes too far.

Fred's interests include bowling, playing pool, golf, poker and lounging around the house. Fred has won championships with his bowling skills; in one episode, he goes so far as to take ballet lessons in order to improve his game.[14] The nickname of "Twinkletoes" stuck with him when Fred attended a local university and became eligible to play on their football team, and it became his call sign.[15] Fred is also an excellent golfer. Fred, is a member of the Loyal Order of Water Buffalos Lodge (named "the Loyal Order of Dinosaurs" in an early episode[16]). Fred also has a serious gambling problem; the mere mention of the word "bet" causes Fred to stammer "bet" over and over again and go on gambling binges.[17] Fred is also an avid driver. In the fifth season episode "Indianrockolis 500," Fred entered the famed prehistoric auto race under the pseudonym "Goggles Pisano".[18]

Fred's catchphrase is "Yabba-Dabba-Doo!", which Alan Reed, voice actore who provided Fred's voice from 1960-1977, reportedly said that the inspiration for the phrase came from his mother, who used to say, "A little dab'll do ya," probably borrowed from a Brylcreem commercial. When the script called for a simple 'Yahoo!' Alan either asked if he could alter the phrase or he ad-libbed. It becomes the subject of a song by Hoagy Carmichael that the singer-songwriter performs in an episode of The Flintstones.[19] Fred's ability to carry a tune was quite good in his younger years. One early episode[16] sees Fred (with Barney, who is a skilled drummer) perform at a nightclub with his musician friend "Hot Lips Hannigan" where his singing caused teenage girls to swoon over him; on this occasion, he was nicknamed "the Golden Smog". In another first season episode, "Girls' Night Out", Fred recorded a demo record at a carnival of the song "Listen to the Rocking Bird", which ended up making him a teenage singing idol named "Hi Fye." As the series progressed, however, his voice became worse and worse, eventually to the point that a temporary maid the Flintstones hired quit rather than having to hear Fred sing.[20]

Due to his impulsive and short-tempered behavior and stubborn and naive nature, Fred seems to be accident-prone. Even his most innocent and mundane actions often cause widespread confusion.

According to the original series' third season episode "The Birthday Party" (originally aired April 5, 1963), Fred's birthday is February 2. Fred's address has varied through the series' run, with addresses given for the Flintstone residence including 345 Cave Stone Road,[citation needed] 1313 Cobblestone Way,[citation needed] Fred's address was cited as "55 Cobblestone Rd" in the 1961 episode "The X-Ray Story". and 222 Rocky Way.[citation needed]

Portrayal[edit]

In other media[edit]

Commercials[edit]

During the first several seasons of The Flintstones series, Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble were pitchmen for Winston cigarettes, the show's sponsor at the time. In one Winston ad, Fred and Barney saw the men working hard at the quarry and decided to retire out of sight for a smoke break. After extolling the virtues of the Winston brand cigarette, Fred lit up his cigarette and delivered the catch phrase: "Winston tastes good like a cigarette should". Another similar ad for the cigarettes featured Wilma and Betty as well; the women were working hard mowing the lawn and beating dust out of a rug while Fred and Barney smoked behind the house. Vignettes also aired in which Fred lit Wilma's Winston cigarette, and the couple shared a smoke. By the original series' third season, Winston had been dropped as a sponsor in favor of Welch's.[25]

See Also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b The Flintstone Comedy Show, 1980-1982, NBC
  2. ^ a b c d The Flintstone Kids, 1986-1988, ABC
  3. ^ a b "Baby Barney," The Flintstones, season 3
  4. ^ a b "A Haunted House is Not a Home," The Flintstones, season 5
  5. ^ "They Went That Away," The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show, CBS
  6. ^ a b "Bedrock Hillbillies," The Flintstones, season 4
  7. ^ a b "The Story of Rocky's Raiders," The Flintstones, season 6
  8. ^ a b c "Droop Along Flintstone," The Flintstones, season 2
  9. ^ a b Hollyrock-a-Bye Baby, 1993, ABC
  10. ^ A Flintstone Family Christmas, 1993, ABC
  11. ^ The Flintstones The Museum of Broadcast Communications
  12. ^ a b "Bachelor Daze," The Flintstones, season 4
  13. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0580165/
  14. ^ "Bowling Ballet," The Flintstones, season 3
  15. ^ "Flintstone of Prinstone," The Flintstones, season 2
  16. ^ a b "Hot Lips Hannigan," The Flintstones, season 1
  17. ^ "The Gambler," The Flintstones, season 2
  18. ^ Video on YouTube
  19. ^ "The Hit Song Writers," The Flintstones, season 2
  20. ^ "Wilma, the Maid," The Flintstones, season 3
  21. ^ "Voice of Fred Flintstone, Henry Corden dies at 85". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  22. ^ McLellan, Dennis (2005-05-21). "Henry Corden, 85; Played Film and TV Heavies, Was Voice of Fred Flintstone". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-08-24. 
  23. ^ Brennan, Judy (1994-04-24). "Will 'Flintstones' Bolster Goodman's Rocky Film Career?". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-08-24. 
  24. ^ Harrison, Eric (2000-04-28). "Meet the Young Flintstones in Livelier Prequel". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-08-24. 
  25. ^ http://legendsrevealed.com/entertainment/2012/12/09/did-the-flintstones-do-commercials-for-winston-cigarettes/

Further reading[edit]

  • Yabba Dabba Doo! The Alan Reed Story, by Alan Reed and Ben Ohmart. Albany, 2009. ISBN 1-59393-313-4