"When I was young I had a thing for Judy Jetson.
Now that I'm older I've got a thing for Jane."

- W.J. Flywheel, Webporium Curator

The Jetsons was a prime-time American animated television series produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions, and aired from September 23, 1962 to March 3, 1963. Like The Flintstones, it was a family sitcom projecting contemporary American culture and lifestyle into other time periods. While the Flintstones lived in a world with machines powered by birds and dinosaurs, the Jetsons lived in a utopian future of elaborate robotic contraptions, aliens, holograms, and whimsical inventions. Also, the Flintstones represented the contemporary American blue collar lifestyle while the Jetsons were white collar.

The original series of 24 episodes was made between 1962 and 1963 and was re-run on Saturday morning for decades. Its continuing popularity led to further episodes being produced for syndication between 1984 and 1987. The series was extensively merchandised and followed by two made for-TV movies and one feature film.

George Jetson worked 3 hours a day and 3 days a week for a short, tyrannical boss named Cosmo G. Spacely, owner of the company Spacely Space Sprockets. Typical episodes would involve Mr. Spacely firing and rehiring or promoting and demoting George Jetson. Mr. Spacely had a competitor, W.C. Cogswell, owner of the rival company Cogswell Cogs. All homes and businesses were raised high above the ground on narrow poles, in a style reflective of the architecture of Seattle's Space Needle and the distinct Theme Building of the Los Angeles International Airport. George commuted to work in a flying saucer with a transparent top. Daily life was characterized as being comically leisurely due to an incredible sophistication and number of labor saving devices. George's work day consists of pressing a single computer button. Despite this, characters would often complain of travails and difficulties of living with the remaining inconveniences.


Other Jetson family members included Jane Jetson, the wife and homemaker; teenage daughter Judy and preteen son Elroy. Housekeeping was seen to by a robot maid, Rosie; she only appeared in two episodes of the original 1960s show, excluding her appearance in the closing credits, but made many appearances on the 1980s show. The family dog Astro could mumble, just as Scooby-Doo later on could (voice actor Don Messick played both). Astro's catch phrases were "Ruh-ro!" and "Right, Reorge!"

Names of locations, events, and devices were often puns or derivatives of contemporary analogs with explicit futuristic or space-age twists. The same technique was used in The Flintstones with archaic or stone-age twists.


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