Monday, November 12, 2007

Meet George Jetson (Wall Street Journal, 2007)

Jason Fry has a very interesting piece in today's Wall Street Journal about those who long for the Jetsons' version of the future. The November 15, 2007 issue of Rolling Stone also has an article about paleo-futurism, although I haven't read that one yet.

An excerpt from the Wall Street Journal piece appears below but just to clarify, there were only 24 episodes of the original 1960s version of the Jetsons. New episodes were produced in the 1980s.
I doubt the creators of "The Jetsons" ever imagined how they'd influence kids growing up in the 1970s. The last episode of the original "Jetsons" aired in the spring of 1963, but its real heyday came in syndication, with the show playing on what seemed like continuous loop in the late 1970s. Amazingly, there were only 24 "Jetsons" episodes --- it's a bit frightening to imagine how many times I must have seen each one.

And I'm not alone. Rolling Stone just released another anniversary issue, this one interviewing 25 big names about the future of the music industry, global warming, politics and the like. Turns out a fair number of Rolling Stone's famous interviewees spent their childhoods the same way I did: watching George and Jane and Judy and Elroy.

Kanye West and Bruce Springsteen would like their flying cars already. The future was "The Jetsons," George Clooney recalls -- it "meant getting into a silver costume with a ring around your neck and riding around in floating cars. It was antiseptic and perfect." Chris Rock also grew up expecting airborne cars and moving sidewalks. Mr. Clooney finds it "funny that none of it really came around," but Mr. Rock notes that flying cars aside, "The Jetsons pretty much came true. My kid even has a mechanical dog that does flips." (Who's right? I'll get to that.)

See also:
Paleo-Future in the Wall Street Journal




At this blogsite, you can see some early artwork depicting what polar
cities might look like, interior views. Art was created by Taiwanese
artist Deng Cheng-hong, with production notes from Dan Bloom, creator
of the ''polar city blog''....


Dan Bloom

Matt said...

It'd be interesting to do a study into how images of the future in movies and TV actually influence scientists and inventors, and ultimately lead to similar technological advances.

It wouldn't surprise me if shows like The Jetsons, which are aimed at kids, actually turn out to have the bigger impact, speaking as they do to impressionable young minds.

Syl said...

I've heard Star Trek has had quite the influence on inventions. The flip phone, for example, was inspired by the original series communicators.

Billy Susbuck said...

Hasn't come true!? I ordered about 50 sprockets off the internet yesterday! You can never have enough sprockets, right?