‘The Jetsons’: THR’s 1962 Review

On Sept. 23, 1962, ABC debuted The Jetsons at 7:30 pm to television audiences. Like the Stone Age Flintstones, the futuristic animated family sitcom would become an enduring franchise for producers Hanna-Barbera. The Hollywood Reporter’s original review of the first episode, “Rosey The Robot,” is below:

The Jetsons is based on the same premise as The Flintstones, with the difference that the projection is in the future instead of the past. A family situation comedy, done in animation (and for those with color sets, color), the new Hanna-Barbera production should attract a good audience.

The jokes are familiar, but the setting gives them novelty and an added dimension, and cartooning is certainly suited to the TV screen.

Larry Markes’ script for the initial episode lightly sketched in the characters, mother, father, two children (boy and girl) of the Jetsons, a 21st Century family.

Jokes are built around gadgetry of the future and some eternal problems: a skinflint boss, a jewel of a maid (Rosey the Robot), a nosey mother-in-law, etc. But the lines and situations get a fresh boost from the background, just as they do in Flintstones.

Viewing in black-and-white, the animation appeared clean and bright. Voices are good, by George O’Hanlon, Penny Singleton, Janet Waldo, Daws Butler, Don Messick, Mel Blanc and Jean Vander Pyl.

William Hanna and Joseph Barbera are co-producers and directors, with Alex Lovy as associate producer. — James Powers, originally published on Sept. 25, 1962.

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