DVD Release Date: Tuesday, March 10, 2015
After the surprisingly positive reaction to last year’s Scooby-Doo! WrestleMania Mystery, the idea of a WWE and Flintstones crossover didn’t sound quite so crazy. Arriving just about a year after the first animated film in WWE Studios’ history, their second outing, The Flintstones & WWE: Stone Age SmackDown proves to be another success.
This time around a handful of WWE Superstars pop up in the prehistoric days of Fred (Jeff Bergman), Barney (Kevin Michael Richardson), and the rest of “Flintstones” cast. The film begins with Fred showing up late for work, causing damage, and losing his bonus check. This conflicts with his grand plan of taking his wife Wilma and their daughter Pebbles on a beach vacation to Rockapulco, so he has to figure out a way to make more clams.
Later that evening at the fair, Fred discovers the idea of staging fights to manipulate an audience into paying clams to see said fights. His discovery impresses a young Vince McMagma (Mr. McMahon), who at the time was but a lowly salesman. CM Punkrock (CM Punk) and Marble Henry (Mark Henry) get into a scuffle with Barney, which goes so well that Fred immediately envisions a rematch. Fred also recruits the talents of John Cenastone (John Cena), Rey Mysteriopal (Rey Mysterio), and The Undertaker (The Undertaker) to stage some skirmishes for the crowd. Daniel Bryrock (Daniel Bryan) also appears for about 30 seconds and is quickly forgotten, so the film is pretty true to the WWE Universe.
Of course things go awry, and Fred engages in all kinds of hijinks behind Wilma’s back. He promotes entire shows without her knowledge and tries to earn back the money he lost for their vacation fund. Fred’s early success goes to his head, and he forgets about his best friend. Meanwhile, Punkrock, Henry, and the Boulder Twins Nikki and Brie (The Bella Twins) cause mayhem at Fred’s shows, calling Barney out for the rematch that Mr. Rubble has no interest in participating in. Directing team Spike Brandt and Tony Cervone don’t linger too long on much of anything, ensuring a brisk pace throughout.
At a tidy 52 minutes, “SmackDown” manages to stay fairly entertaining and not overstay its welcome. Punk in particular sounds like he’s having fun playing the villain, though it’s hard not to be bummed by how he’s no longer with the company; ditto Mysterio. The writers Jed Elinoff and Scott Thomas are familiar enough with both WWE and Flintstones history to insert classic tropes from both universes and combine them in a clever way.
The Flintstones & WWE: Stone Age SmackDown is another surprising success from the animated division of WWE Studios – this is becoming a yearly tradition I now look forward to.