The Jetsons (TV series)
- This article is about the TV series. For other uses, see The Jetsons.
On-screen title card.
|Created by:||William Hanna|
|Original release:||September 23, 1962—March 3, 1963; September 16, 1985—November 12, 1987|
|Run time:||22 minutes|
Jean Vander Pyl
|Executive producer(s):||William Hanna|
|Music composed by:||Hoyt Curtin|
Gordon Hunt (voices)
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The Jetsons is an American animated sci-fi TV sitcom produced by Hanna-Barbera (H-B) for ABC. It originally ran from 1962 to 1963, for 24 episodes. It was the third prime-time sitcom geared towards adults, after The Flintstones and Top Cat. The series was revived between 1985 to 1987, with 51 other episodes, but aired as part of The Funtastic World of Hanna-Barbera programming block in syndication.
It was the Space-Age counterpart to The Flintstones, who lived in the Stone-Age, where life was assisted by dinosaurs and birds, whereas The Jetsons lived in a far-off future utopia, with robots and other fantastical gadgets eased everyday lives. The humor of it, though, was that they still found life difficult.
The series is largely about the middle-class George Jetson dealing with the everyday problems of his loud boss, Cosmo Spacely, despite his mundane routine of pushing a button to get Spacely's factory working. He also deals with family life, having to fulfill the needs and expectations of his wife, Jane, teenage daughter, Judy, and preadolescent son, Elroy. He also has to deal with an overly loving pet dog and a snappy robot maid. In the second season, an alien named Orbitty was added to the family.
Soon after this new version ended, two TV movies followed, which were The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones and Rockin' with Judy Jetson, followed by a seemingly de facto series finale in Jetsons: The Movie, a theatrically released film by Universal Pictures in 1990. 27 years later in 2017 (with Hanna-Barbera having been absorbed into Time Warner in the late 1990s), Warner Bros. Animation produced the first and only direct-to-video film, The Jetsons & WWE: Robo-WrestleMania.
A live-action film has also been in the works since the 1980s. In 2017, a live-action TV series was announced to be executive produced by Gary Janetti, Jack Rapke, and Robert Zemeckis, and written by Janetti for ABC. With a name as big as Zemeckis, things will surely get moving quickly... Not. Nothing has been announced since.
Between 1963 and 1985, Hanna-Barbera's first attempt in reviving the series was in the form of a sequel that would have aged Judy and Elroy by ten years. It was pitched to CBS in 1974, but the network rejected it and had Hanna-Barbera retool it as Partridge Family 2200 A.D.
The score was composed and conducted by Hoyt Curtin, who also composed and arranged the theme song, with lyrics written by Joseph Barbera and William Hanna. The music was directed by Paul DeKorte for the second season, then Joanne Miller was the director of music supervision for the third season, according to the credits.
- Theme song lyrics
Meet George Jetson
His boy, Elroy
Jane, his wife
- George O'Hanlon as George Jetson
- Penny Singleton as Jane Jetson
- Daws Butler as Elroy Jetson
- Janet Waldo as Judy Jetson
- Jean Vander Pyl as Rosie
- Don Messick as Astro
- Mel Blanc as Cosmo Spacely
- Frank Welker as Orbitty
The Spümcø tributes
Former Hanna-Barbera animator John Kricfalusi, better known as John K., started up his own animation studio Spümcø in 1989, which created the referred The Ren & Stimpy Show for Nickelodeon in 1991. In 1999, Cartoon Network gave him his chance to show his "love" for old Hanna-Barbera cartoons by creating a short called "Boo Boo Runs Wild." Other shorts followed periodically, which included his takes on The Jetsons. In 2001 and 2002, he created "Father & Son Day" and "The Best," respectively, for Cartoon Network's official website. After this, the world never had to see another one of John K.'s tributes again.
In popular culture
- In the film The Terminator, Sarah wears a Jetsons t-shirt while getting ready for her date.
- In the film Demolition Man, Spartan calls Dr. Cocteau "Spacely Sprockets" after he first meets him.
- In the Moesha episode "The Ditch Party," Hakeem calls the Mitchell family the Jetsons, as part of the recurring joke of him referring to the family as popular families, whether they be fake or real. His reason for calling them the Jetsons, is because Frank has the same haircut as George.
- In the Malcolm in the Middle episode "Malcolm Babysits," Malcolm is told he can't have a robotics kit by his mom because it is too expensive ($90). Hal also adds that robots are evil, such as Rosie, who he also considers to be creepy.
- In the Jeopardy! episode "Producer's Pick episode 4 (Jeffrey Schwartz Game 4), the question for "TV & Movie Common Bonds" for $600 is Berta, Alice Nelson, Rosie the Robot, with the response being who are maids/maids and housekeepers.
- In the Teen Titans Go! episode "Sandwich Thief," in the future, when Nightwing opens his front door, it makes the same jingle as the doorbell from Jetsons.
Comic Book Men
- "Stash Wars:" When the guys talk about the background of a cartoon they'd like to live in, Ming picks Jetsons.
- "To the Bat Cave:" Mike's favorite talking dog is Astro.
- Main article: Family Guy
- "Brian in Love:" In the closing titles, George takes Astro for a walk on the hovering treadmill, which ends disastrously for George when Astro starts chasing the cat that has jumped on their treadmill. Astro and the cat end up jumping off and watch George caught spinning around on the treadmill screaming for Jane. In "Brian in Love", the scene continues with George eventually finding his way back inside the house, with bruises and a torn shirt, excuses Elroy to leave, and then chastises Jane for not hearing his cries for help. Jane can only apologize, although she is not forgiven. Seth MacFarlane voices George and Elroy, while D.D. Howard voices Jane.
- "From Method to Madness:" Peter thinks it's fine for Stewie to go into acting at such a young age because he thinks Elroy turned out okay. But Elroy has grown up to become a poor drunk. He gets taken out of a bar by its bouncer and put into a taxi driven by another former child star Bamm-Bamm Rubble. The bouncer tells Bamm-Bamm to take Elroy home, but he wants to go to Astro's grave, instead.
- "Meet the Quagmires:" Peter and Brian's tampering with the timeline has caused them to get flying cars, which Brian attributes as Al Gore being in office. The scene then shifts to an authentic take in the opening theme song where George drops off everyone to their destinations, only this time George stops Jane from taking his wallet when she doesn't accept the money he gives her. She says she was just going to buy groceries, but George cries, "Bullcrap!" Immediately after when Peter and Brian discuss how to get Death's attention (who transported them into the past to begin with), Jane's body drops to the ground, with her money falling on top of her dead body and the sound of George's space car swooshing away. Bergman and Beth Littleford voice George and Jane, respectively.
- "Play It Again, Brian:" A caricaturist interprets Lois and Brian as Jane and Snoopy, respectively.
- "Something, Something, Something Dark Side:" Among the probes shot out of the Star Destroyer is Elroy in his pod on his way to Little Dipper School. This is accompanied by the "His boy, Elroy" part of the theme song.
- "Pilling Them Softly:" When Quagmire fires Peter from his kitchen show, Peter says he can only be fired by Mr. Spacely, who pops up on the set and fires him without remorse, which causes Peter to sadly walk away. Mr. Spacely is voiced by MacFarlane.