Thursday, September 30, 2010

Flintstone's 50th, Google Doodles, and All That

"Google Celebrates 50 Years of The Flintstones: A Doodle Flashback"
Ian Paul, PCWorld (September 30, 2010)

"Yabba Dabba Doodle! Google is celebrating the 50th anniversary of "The Flintstones" Thursday with a special Google Doodle featuring Fred, Wilma and the rest of the Bedrock crew. Long before "The Flintstones" were a lunchtime and afterschool favorite for kids across North America, the show debuted as a prime time comedy series on ABC on September 30, 1960. It lasted six seasons on television, and the franchise has been featured in theme parks, two live-action movies, and assorted merchandise including chewable children's vitamins...."

(Google Doodle, via PCWorld, used w/o permission)

Then there's that phrase from The Flintstones (1960-1966) theme that only a select number of folks can decipher:

"...Let's ride with the family down the street
"Through the courtesy of Fred's two feet...."

That was a fun series - that, and the (original/early) The Jetsons (1962–1988). In the Lemming's opinion.

Speaking of "select number," the PCWorld article displays a number of other Google Doodles of the 21st century, some of which appeared around the world: and some which didn't.
  • Global
    • Claude Monet
      • November 14, 2001
    • Sputnik
      • October 4, 2007
    • TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol)
      • January 1, 2008
    • Large Hadron Collider
      • September 10, 2008
    • E.C. Segar
      • December 8, 2009
  • Selected countries
    • NASA Moon Landing
      • July 20, 2009
    • Sesame Street 40th
      • November 10, 2009
    • Akira Kurosawa
      • March 23, 2010
  • Germany
    • Fall of the Berlin Wall
      • November 9, 2009
  • United States
    • Martin Luther King Jr.
      • January 19, 2009
Some of the regional selections made sense, like Martin Luther King's birthday: noteworthy to the dominant culture here in the United States, not so much elsewhere.

Others I'm not so sure about. Sputnik as a global celebration, the Yankee moon landing commemoration restricted to "selected countries," followed an all-too-familiar pattern: but Germany's Doodle about the fall of the Berlin Wall included this phrase: "Soviet oppression." That isn't politically correct, so there's probably some other reason for keeping the commemoration of humanity's first steps on another world out of some countries.

Then there's Elzie Crisler "Popeye" Segar - which was a global Doodle. and Akira "Seven Samurai" Kurosawa, which wasn't.

Google probably had a system for deciding which countries saw which doodles: but knowing that factoid isn't necessary. The Doodles are fun, by themselves - more so with the PCWorld descriptions.

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