DC Comics’ current The Flintstones series is incredible. Far and away the strongest book of the company’s Hanna-Barbera revival, The Flintstones has been called “the most woke comic book of 2016”, and every single issue tackles a major modern issue through a delightful prehistoric comedy lens. (Read this A.V. Club Big Issues on The Flintstones for a deeper look at the series.) During especially trying times, The Flintstones feels like a soothing balm, and last month’s issue ended with an extremely powerful moment where Fred Flintstone reveals why humanity is worth saving when humans do such horrible things to each other. Writer Mark Russell is writing smart, hilarious, poignant stories that blend satire with genuine emotion, and he’s working with an exceptional art team that navigates all the shifts in the scripts with grace, nuance, and just the right amount of silliness.
After fill-in art from industry legend Rick Leonardi last month, regular artist Steve Pugh is back for this week’s The Flintstones #8, which tackles gender inequality in domestic roles. This exclusive preview establishes this theme as it looks at the history of gatherer women carrying a large workload at home while the hunter men carry a much smaller burden. When Wilma and Velma take a vacation, their husbands are left in charge of domestic duties, and they quickly find themselves overwhelmed by the responsibility. While written well before the Women’s March, these preview pages are heavily reminiscent of The New York Times’ piece exploring the challenges men faced when their wives left home to protest, an article that read like Flintstones-esque satire except it was actually serious. It’s astounding just how in-tune this creative team is with current events, and hopefully it will have the opportunity to continue exploring the major issues of today for a long, long time.