Yabba Dabba Don’t: ‘Flintstones’ Sold Cigs, Sexism

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Kids who grew up in the 70s and 80s were treated to a more kid-friendly version of those beloved prehistoric working stiffs, the Flintstones. But when it started out in the 60s, The Flintstones was a Honeymooners clone made for adults. This was obvious from the content of the 1960 to 1966 original run, featuring domestic and blue-collar situations. Can kids really relate to getting laid off, working a thankless, dead-end job, or getting into trouble with the little lady?

It was also obvious judging from the products the characters shilled for. In a classic YouTube commercial clip, Fred and Barney are lazing about watching Wilma and Betty doing chores, which becomes too much for them. Our heroes move themselves to where they can’t see the women working, and decide to take a Winston cigarette break. The cigarette maker actually sponsored the show.

The cavemen also sold Busch beer in a promo short portraying the brew as a magical elixir that can help get your job back and even score a raise. The Stone Age was a simpler time.

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Ad Age shares more on the history of Flintstones TV ads.

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