The Jetsons & WWE: Robo-Wrestlemania

| March 14, 2017

Wrestlemania, the biggest wrestling event of the year, is mere weeks away. It’s all the WWE has talked about for months, as “The Road to Wrestlemania” is a long and winding one that gives hardcore fans many things to complain about even as more casual fans find themselves getting excited about the prospect of high profile matches. Titles have changed hands, part-time wrestlers have taken the spotlight away from the full-timers, and some rivalries have been set in motion that really nobody asked for—I’m looking at you Roman Reigns vs Undertaker! Still, the most curious thing we’ve passed on this “Road to Wrestlemania” has to be without a doubt the straight-to-video, feature-length, animated WWE tie-in film, The Jetsons & WWE: Robo-Wrestlemania (2017).

When I first learned of Robo-Wrestlemania, my first thought was, “Why does this exist?” Seriously, is there a demand for Jetsons content anymore? Do kids these days even know who the Jetsons are? I mean, mine didn’t before this movie came out and he’s pretty darn media savvy! My second thought was of course that I absolutely had to see it. After all, this sounds the cinematic equivalent of mad science; let’s combine two totally unrelated things and just see what happens, consequences be damned.

The crazy thing is, though, as mad as throwing WWE Superstars into the Jetsons universe seems, it actually resulted in a surprisingly enjoyable 81 minutes of entertainment, even if you/your kids have no idea who The Jetsons are. The basic premise follows a megalomaniacal Big Show who is frozen and then awakened in a Jetsons future where he finds himself the only strong person in the world. After besting the future’s robot-based WWE Universe, he sets his sights on conquering the world. As a result, George Jetson and family have to go back in time to gather a team of WWE Superstars to help them vanquish Big Show and his robot army.

It sounds ludicrous, but it works, and in no small part thanks to the sheer amount of WWE Superstars present in the film. And not only do a number of wrestlers voice themselves, but they get to voice their robot counterparts as well. The male roster of WWE voice talent includes Big Show of course, in addition to Seth Rollins, Sheamus, The Usos, Vince McMahon and Michael Cole, as well as Dolph Ziggler and Stardust, who voice only robot versions of themselves. However, the only female wrestler in the film is Alicia Fox, which is sad considering there is actually more than one woman in the WWE. Judy and Jane do disguise themselves as Charlotte and Becky Lynch, respectively, at one point, but that hardly counts.

Ultimately, mixing cartoonish exaggerations of these Superstars’ already cartoonish characters with robotic renditions of the very same Superstars finds Robo-Wrestlemania serving as a more consistently sensical and hilarious animated WWE feature than either of the Scooby-Doo proved to be. Why? Given that The Jetsons is no longer a property people are terribly interested in so far as I can tell, this movie was clearly made with WWE fans in mind, first and foremost.

The filmmakers get so many things about the WWE and these characters right throughout that I, for one, felt grateful that they’d put forth such effort. Seth Rollins comes across as arrogant yet consistently hilarious—his horrible Sheamus impression had my entire family in stitches. The Big Show makes at least three turns from heel to face throughout the course of the movie. The Undertaker and Kane are treated like total monsters, given that they only appear as robots and don’t talk. And perhaps most hysterically, Michael Cole actually calls a move wrong during one of the mid-movie matches.

[Side note: The Reactor Rollins robot also curb-stomps the Reigns robot, which is surprising since the move has been banned in the WWE.]

The only thing the movie doesn’t get right here is that all audiences throughout cheer for Roman Reigns and treat him like he’s the absolute greatest, and if you’ve been watching WWE as of late, you’ll know that he’s hardly a fan favorite. If I’ve any problem outside of that, it’s simply that the movie doesn’t do much to change the dated gender dynamics that defined the characters in the original Jetsons series. Giving the women even just a little bit more to do throughout would have gone a long way. Heck, they had Jane and Judy dressed as Charlotte and Lynch already. Why not have them do some wrestling themselves? George gets in the ring basically as himself, after all, so let the ladies get in on the action. Having the two of them wrestle Alicia Fox in an impromptu handicap match or something would have been pretty rad!

Still, those are minor gripes against what was otherwise a shockingly entertaining animated feature. Again, though, if you’re not a fan of WWE, you likely won’t find much here to latch on to… unless you’re still really in to The Jetsons.

The Jetsons & WWE: Robo-Wrestlemania is now available on DVD and Digital HD from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. The DVD includes three brief featurettes about The Jetsons and their world, as well as WWE Superstars’ perspectives on the franchise, as well as three episodes of The Jetsons, so you can show your kids who The Jetsons are before they watch Robo-Wrestlemania.

About the Author:

Jef is a writer and educator in Chicago, Illinois. He holds a degree in Media & Cinema Studies from DePaul University, but sometimes he drops it and picks it back up again. He's also the Editor-in-Chief of FilmMonthly.com and is fueled entirely by coffee (as if you couldn't tell).
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