Oct 2, 2006

I Like This New Scooby-Doo

I like Scooby-Doo.

Anybody that knows me either from my frantic postings at the "gated community" known as Toon Zone or the angry, yet somewhat comical updates at The X Bridge knows that I'm not a fan of Scooby-Doo, and yet, for my 100th posting here at Thoughtnami, I never thought I'd utter those words at the beginning of a post.

Let's rewind to the point of my original disdain. Afterall, from the time the show premiered on Cartoon Network in 1994 (yes, it's a little-known fact, but Scooby-Doo wasn't always on CN since it was basically licensed to USA in what would be the last hurrah for the late, great Cartoon Express) until late 2004, Scooby-Doo has been a boil on nearly every CN fan with its almost total dominance on the lineup. Of course in 2006, I would actually kill to see something other than Camp Lazlo, Foster's, Ed, Edd, and Eddy, or Billy and Mandy on the lineup whenever they have an open slot, even welcoming Scooby-Doo with open arms.

Scooby-Doo isn't the best cartoon in the world. I know that statement pisses off a significant group of fans, but the series is very formulaic. And every show looked the same, from Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? to Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf. A Pup Named Scooby-Doo was a variation (a terribly-animated variation at that) that buffered between the original incarnation to the revamp of the late-90s from many of the animators and writers behind SWAT Kats and The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest and the creation of What's New, Scooby-Doo? which not only harkened back to its original incarnation, but also returned the franchise to Saturday mornings, albeit on a network that preferred glorified monster-fighting cartoons and overrated card battles than American-made fare (but dang it, Kids' WB was so much better than what else is out there).

And now, after a season and a half-long break, Scooby-Doo has returned to the airwaves in a new series, Shaggy and Scooby-Doo Get A Clue. However, there's something . . . different about this show. The character designs are stylized and a little hipper than we're used to seeing them. The show seems like it's trying to be more of a cohesive story than just a bunch of teens (as well as concrete proof that the kids are graduates from high-school) galavanting around the world searching for mysteries. It just seems fresh. And as strange at it may seem, I like this new Scooby-Doo. Seems like something I wrote back a couple of years ago on the site. Granted, Shaggy and Scooby-Doo Get A Clue is hardly a teen-oriented show, but it's probably a shakeup that the franchise needed for some years now, and I for one am looking forward to see what else this show has to offer.


Jorge Garrido said...

>A Pup Named Scooby-Doo was a variation (a terribly-animated variation at that)

"A Pup..." was way superior and way better animated than the original Scooby Doo and other incarnations. It used alot of 40's style Tex Avery takes, SMEAR animation, and wacky drawings. It was alot more comical than the original.

jh said...

Okay, I'll take the comment back.

It was just a variation. I think it was just the similarly squashed heads that I also saw on Tiny Toons that kind of turned me off of "A Pup." It was terribly animated in some parts in my opinion and often reused a lot of runaway visual gags, but it was the best Scooby-Doo series since the '69 classic.

The Wacky World of Tex Avery had similar traits, but nobody gives that piece of scat any love, nor should they.

"A Pup" also mocked the original by skewering every aspect and ballooning the character's attitudes so much. Shaggy was a bit more childlike, Daphne was a lot more vapid, Velma was more of a brainiac, and Freddy's ego was blown up to the point of insanity. THAT'S what I liked about the show.

I am curious about your feelings about Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, a film that kind of blended what was good about "Where Are You?" and "A Pup" and yet made it good somehow.

Emperor Fred said...

Yay! Some love for "Pup". Yeah, the animation was sloppy at times, but still had way more energy and humour than anything that came before.

To this day I bemoan the fact that they didn't immediately take the premise of "Zombie Island" and turn it into a series. I really enjoyed its darker, smarter and truly supernatural slant. As well as its slick animation.

I have not checked out "Get a Clue" yet, but now you've got my curiousity!

Jorge Garrido said...

>I am curious about your feelings about Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, a film that kind of blended what was good about "Where Are You?" and "A Pup" and yet made it good somehow.

I saw a few bits of it here and there a few years ago, but trust me, I hane no love for Scooby Doo, even the 1969 version. I thought some of the Zombie Island bits were bettter than the original series, though. It was scarier and mroe dramatic.

Bugs Bunny should still have been elected president, though.