Tuesday, 30 December 2014
46 Scooby-Doo Where Are You !
First watched : Uncertain
Another Hanna-Barbera classic Scooby Doo has a special place in my affections because as a franchise he's lasted through to the present day. My son knows who he is and that continuity makes me feel a little less old.
Because of this durability it feels a bit superfluous to explain the premise but never mind. Scooby-Doo Where Are You ! ( sic ) is the bridge between Enid Blyton's Famous Five and The X-Files. Scooby ( I'm not sure the other characters ever call him by his full name ) is a Great Dane - a breed whose size makes them terrifying to me but Scooby's scared of his own shadow - who accompanies four late sixties stereotypes on missions to investigate supposedly supernatural occurrences, a task for which he is fundamentally unsuited of course. His companions are Fred, a square-jawed jock, Daphne a sultry sex bomb with a propensity for becoming a hostage, Velma a bespectacled library-bound wallflower and Shaggy, a proto-slacker dude and Scooby's human equal in cowardice. Every episode was pretty much the same - the ghosts / monsters would be revealed as ordinary criminals disguising earth-bound nefarious activities thanks to the efforts of "those meddling kids " - but it was lovable just the same.
The original series was made between 1969 and 1970 comprising 25 episodes over two seasons. It re-surfaced two years later as The New Scooby-Doo Movies which were 45 minute long episodes , less formulaic and featuring guest stars, either fictional characters from other TV series or real-life celebrities in animated form. These were all American of course and this is where I first heard of many of them such as Sonny and Cher .Mama Cass Elliott died shortly after the Mamas and Papas episode was broadcast here in 1974 ; without it I wouldn't have had a clue who she was, This format lasted two years and 24 episodes were made.
By the time of the third format, The Scooby-Doo Show in 1976 I had tuned out so I missed the introduction of the infamous Scrappy-Doo. I only heard about him in the mid-noughties when members of my walking group used him as a nickname for a diminutive member. The guys on Pointless are fond of bringing him up with a sigh as having wrecked the franchise making him the equivalent of Fonzie's shark.