|Original work||Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! (1969–70)|
|Owner||Warner Bros. Discovery|
|Comics||see List of comics|
|Films and television|
|Film(s)||see List of films|
|Short film(s)||see List of shorts|
|Television series||see List of television series|
|Television special(s)||see List of specials|
|Video game(s)||see List of video games|
|Soundtrack(s)||The Ultimate Collection|
Scooby-Doo is an American animated media franchise based on an animated television series launched in 1969 and continued through several derivative media. Writers Joe Ruby and Ken Spears created the original series, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, for Hanna-Barbera Productions. This Saturday-morning cartoon series featured teenagers Fred Jones, Daphne Blake, Velma Dinkley, and Shaggy Rogers, and their talking Great Dane named Scooby-Doo, who solve mysteries involving supposedly supernatural creatures through a series of antics and missteps.
Scooby-Doo was originally broadcast on CBS from 1969 to 1976, when it moved to ABC. ABC aired various versions of Scooby-Doo until canceling it in 1985, and presented a spin-off featuring the characters as children called A Pup Named Scooby-Doo from 1988 until 1991. Two Scooby-Doo reboots aired as part of Kids' WB on The WB and its successor The CW from 2002 until 2008. Further reboots were produced for Cartoon Network beginning in 2010 and continuing through 2018. Repeats of the various Scooby-Doo series are frequently broadcast on Cartoon Network's sister channel Boomerang in the United States and other countries. The current Scooby-Doo series, Scooby-Doo and Guess Who?, premiered on June 27, 2019, as an original series on Boomerang's streaming service and later HBO Max.
In 2013, TV Guide ranked Scooby-Doo the fifth-greatest TV cartoon of all time.
In 1968, parent-run organizations, particularly Action for Children's Television (ACT), began protesting what they perceived as excessive violence in Saturday-morning cartoons. Most of these shows were Hanna-Barbera action cartoons such as Space Ghost, The Herculoids, and Birdman and the Galaxy Trio, and virtually all of them were canceled by 1969 because of pressure from the parent groups. Members of these watch groups served as advisers to Hanna-Barbera and other animation studios to ensure that new programs would be safe for children.
Fred Silverman, executive for daytime programming at CBS, was then looking for a show that would both revitalize his Saturday-morning line and please the watch groups. The result was The Archie Show from Filmation, based on Bob Montana's teenage humor comic book Archie. Also successful were the musical numbers The Archies performed during each program (one of which, "Sugar, Sugar", was the most successful Billboard number-one hit of 1969). Eager to build upon this success, Silverman contacted producers William Hanna and Joseph Barbera about creating another show based on a teenage rock group, this time featuring teens who solved mysteries between gigs. Silverman envisioned the show as a cross between the popular I Love a Mystery radio serials of the 1940s and either the Archie characters or the popular early 1960s television series The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.
After attempting to develop his own version of the show, called House of Mystery, Barbera, who developed and sold Hanna-Barbera shows while Hanna produced them, passed the task along to storywriters Joe Ruby and Ken Spears, as well as artist/character designer Iwao Takamoto. Their treatment, based in part on The Archie Show, was titled Mysteries Five and featured five teenagers: Geoff, Mike, Kelly, Linda, and Linda's brother W.W., along with their bongo-playing dog, Too Much, who collectively formed the band Mysteries Five. When The Mysteries Five were not performing at gigs, they were out solving spooky mysteries involving ghosts, zombies, and other supernatural creatures. Ruby and Spears were unable to decide whether Too Much would be a large cowardly dog or a small feisty one. When the former was chosen, Ruby and Spears wrote Too Much as a Great Dane but revised the dog character to a large sheepdog (similar to the Archies' sheepdog, Hot Dog) just before their presentation to Silverman, as Ruby feared the character would be too similar to the comic strip character Marmaduke. Silverman rejected their initial pitch, and after consulting with Barbera on next steps, got Barbera's permission to go ahead with Too Much being a Great Dane instead of a sheepdog.
During the design phase, lead character designer Takamoto consulted a studio colleague who was a breeder of Great Danes. After learning the characteristics of a prize-winning Great Dane from her, Takamoto proceeded to break most of the rules and designed Too Much with overly bowed legs, a double chin, and a sloped back, among other abnormalities.
Ruby and Spears' second pass at the show used Dobie Gillis as the template for the teenagers rather than Archie. The treatment retained the dog Too Much, while reducing the number of teenagers to four, removing the Mike character and retaining Geoff, Kelly, Linda, and W.W. As their personalities were modified, so were the characters' names: Geoff became "Ronnie"—later renamed "Fred" (at Silverman's behest), Kelly became "Daphne", Linda "Velma", and W.W. "Shaggy". The teens were now based on four teenage characters from The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis: Dobie Gillis, Thalia Menninger, Zelda Gilroy and Maynard G. Krebs, respectively.
The revised show was re-pitched to Silverman, who liked the material but, disliking the title Mysteries Five, decided to call the show Who's S-S-Scared? Silverman presented Who's S-S-Scared? to the CBS executives as the centerpiece for the upcoming 1969–70 season's Saturday-morning cartoon block. CBS president Frank Stanton felt that the presentation artwork was too scary for young viewers and, thinking the show would be the same, decided to pass on it.
Now without a centerpiece for the upcoming season's programming, Silverman had Ruby, Spears, and the Hanna-Barbera staff revise the treatments and presentation materials to tone down the show and better reflect its comedy elements. The rock band element was dropped, and more attention was focused upon Shaggy and Too Much. According to Ruby and Spears, Silverman was inspired by Frank Sinatra's scat "doo-be-doo-be-doo" at the end of his recording of "Strangers in the Night" on a red-eye flight to one of the development meetings, and decided to rename the dog "Scooby-Doo" and retitled the show Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! The revised show was re-presented to CBS executives, who approved it for production.
Main article: List of Scooby-Doo media
The first episode of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! "What a Night for a Knight" debuted on the CBS network Saturday, September 13, 1969, at 10:30 AM Eastern Time. The original voice cast featured Don Messick as Scooby-Doo, Casey Kasem as Shaggy, Frank Welker as Fred, actress Nicole Jaffe as Velma, and Indira Stefanianna as Daphne. Scooby's speech patterns closely resembled an earlier cartoon dog, Astro from The Jetsons (1962–63), also voiced by Messick. Seventeen episodes of Scooby-Doo Where Are You! were produced in 1969–70. The series theme song was written by David Mook and Ben Raleigh, and performed by Larry Marks.
Each of these episodes features Scooby and the four teenage members of Mystery, Inc.—Fred, Shaggy, Daphne and Velma—arriving at a location in the Mystery Machine, a van painted with psychedelic colors and flower power imagery. Encountering a purportedly supernatural monster terrorizing the local populace, such as a ghost, they decide to investigate. The kids split up to look for clues and suspects, while being chased at turns by the monster. Eventually, the kids come to realize the paranormal activity is actually an elaborate hoax, and—often with the help of a Rube Goldberg-like trap designed by Fred—they capture the creature suit-wearing villain and unmask him or her. Revealed as a flesh and blood crook who used the costume to cover up their crimes, the villain is arrested and taken to jail, often with the catchphrase "if it weren't for those pesky/meddling kids".
Scheduled opposite another teenage mystery-solving show, ABC's The Hardy Boys, Scooby-Doo became a ratings success, with Nielsen ratings reporting that as many as 65% of Saturday-morning audiences were tuned in to CBS when Scooby-Doo was being broadcast. The show was renewed for a second season in 1970, for which eight episodes were produced. Seven of the second-season episodes featured chase sequences set to bubblegum pop songs recorded by Austin Roberts, who also re-recorded the theme song for this season. With Stefanianna Christopherson having married and retired from voice acting, Heather North assumed the role of Daphne, and she continued to voice the character until 1997.
The TV influences of I Love a Mystery and Dobie Gillis were apparent in the first episode. Of the similarities between the Scooby-Doo teens and the Dobie Gillis teens, the similarities between Shaggy and Maynard are the most noticeable; both characters share the same beatnik-style goatee, similar hairstyles, and demeanors. The core premise of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! was also similar to Enid Blyton's Famous Five books. Both series featured four youths with a dog, and the Famous Five stories often revolved around a mystery which invariably turned out not to be supernaturally based, but simply a ruse to disguise the villain's true intent.
The role of each character was strongly defined in the series: Fred is the leader and the determined detective, Velma is the intelligent analyst, Daphne is danger-prone, Shaggy is a coward more motivated by hunger than any desire to solve mysteries, and Scooby is similar to Shaggy, save for a Bob Hope-inspired tendency towards temporary bravery. Later versions of the show made slight changes to the characters' established roles, such as showing the Daphne in 1990s and 2000s Scooby-Doo productions as knowing many forms of karate and having the ability to defend herself, and reducing her tendency towards being kidnapped.
Scooby-Doo itself influenced many other Saturday-morning cartoons of the 1970s. During that decade, Hanna-Barbera and its rivals produced several animated programs also featuring teenage detectives solving mysteries with a pet or mascot of some sort, including Josie and the Pussycats (1970–71), The Funky Phantom (1971–72), The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan (1972–73), Speed Buggy (1973–74), Goober and the Ghost Chasers (1973–74), Jabberjaw (1976–78), and Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels (1977–80).
In the fall of 1972, new one-hour episodes under the title The New Scooby-Doo Movies were created; each episode featuring a real or fictitious guest star helping the gang solve mysteries, including characters from other Hanna-Barbera series such as Harlem Globetrotters, Josie and the Pussycats and Speed Buggy, the comic book characters Batman and Robin (later adapted into their own Hanna-Barbera series, Super Friends, a year later), and celebrities such as Sandy Duncan, The Addams Family, Cass Elliot, Phyllis Diller, Don Knotts and The Three Stooges. Hanna-Barbera musical director Hoyt Curtin composed a new theme song for this series, and Curtin's theme remained in use for much of Scooby-Doo's original broadcast run. After two seasons and 24 episodes of the New Movies format from 1972 to 1973, CBS began airing reruns of the original Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! series until its option on the series expired in 1976.
Now president of ABC, Fred Silverman made a deal with Hanna-Barbera to bring new episodes of Scooby-Doo to the ABC Saturday-morning lineup, where the show went through almost yearly lineup changes. For their 1976–77 season, 16 new episodes of Scooby-Doo were joined with a new Hanna-Barbera show, Dynomutt, Dog Wonder, to create The Scooby-Doo/Dynomutt Hour (the show became The Scooby-Doo/Dynomutt Show when a bonus Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! rerun was added to the package in November 1976). Joe Ruby and Ken Spears, now working for Silverman as supervisors of the ABC Saturday-morning programs, returned the program to its original Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! format, with the addition of Scooby's dim-witted country cousin Scooby-Dum, voiced by Daws Butler, as a recurring character. The voice cast was held over from The New Scooby-Doo Movies save for Nicole Jaffe, who retired from acting in 1973. Pat Stevens took over her role as the voice of Velma.
Then Joe Ruby and Ken Spears left again to start their own studio in 1977 as competition for Hanna-Barbera. They would remain away from the rest of the 1980s.
For the 1977–78 season, The Scooby-Doo/Dynomutt Show became the two-hour programming block Scooby's All-Star Laff-A-Lympics (1977–78) with the addition of Laff-a-Lympics and Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels. In addition to eight new episodes of Scooby-Doo and reruns of the 1969 show, Scooby-Doo also appeared during the All-Star block's Laff-a-Lympics series, which featured 45 Hanna-Barbera characters competing in Battle of the Network Stars-esque parodies of Olympic sporting events. Scooby was seen as the team captain of the Laff-a-Lympics "Scooby-Doobies" team, which also featured Shaggy and Scooby-Dum among its members.
Scooby's All-Star Laff-a-Lympics was retitled Scooby's All Stars for the 1978–79 season, reduced to 90 minutes when Dynomutt was spun off into its own half-hour and the 1969 reruns were dropped. Scooby's All-Stars continued broadcasting reruns of Scooby-Doo from 1976 and 1977, while new episodes of Scooby-Doo aired during a separate half-hour under the Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! banner. After nine weeks, the separate Where Are You! broadcast was cancelled, and the remainder of the 16 new 1978 episodes debuted during the Scooby's All-Stars block. The 40 total Scooby-Doo episodes produced from 1976 to 1978 were later packaged together for syndication as The Scooby-Doo Show, under which title they continue to air.
The Scooby-Doo characters first appeared outside of their regular Saturday-morning format in Scooby Goes Hollywood, an hour-long ABC television special aired in prime time on December 13, 1979. The special revolved around Shaggy and Scooby attempting to convince the network to move Scooby out of Saturday morning and into a prime-time series, and featured spoofs of then-current television series and films such as Happy Days, Superman: The Movie, Laverne & Shirley and Charlie's Angels.
In 1979, Scooby's tiny nephew Scrappy-Doo was added to both the series and the billing, in an attempt to boost Scooby-Doo's slipping ratings. The 1979–80 episodes, aired under the new title Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo as an independent half-hour show, succeeded in regenerating interest in the show. Lennie Weinrib voiced Scrappy in the 1979–80 episodes, with Don Messick assuming the role thereafter. Marla Frumkin replaced Pat Stevens as the voice of Velma mid-season.
As a result of Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo's success, the entire show was overhauled in 1980 to focus more upon Scrappy-Doo. At this time, Scooby-Doo started to walk and run anthropomorphically on two feet more often, rather than on four like a normal dog as he did previously. Fred, Daphne, and Velma were dropped from the series, and the new Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo format now consisted of three seven-minute comedic adventures starring Scooby, Scrappy, and Shaggy instead of one half-hour mystery. Most of the supernatural villains in the seven-minute Scooby and Scrappy cartoons, who in previous Scooby series had been revealed to be human criminals in costume, were now real within the context of the series.
This version of Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo first aired from 1980 to 1982 as part of The Richie Rich/Scooby-Doo Show, an hour-long program also featuring episodes of Hanna-Barbera's new Richie Rich cartoon, adapted from the Harvey Comics character. From 1982 to 1983, Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo were part of The Scooby-Doo/Scrappy-Doo/Puppy Hour, a co-production with Ruby-Spears Productions which featured two Scooby and Scrappy shorts, a Scrappy and Yabba-Doo short featuring Scrappy-Doo and his Western deputy uncle Yabba-Doo, and The Puppy's New Adventures, based on characters from a 1977 Ruby-Spears TV special.
Beginning in 1980, a half-hour of reruns from previous incarnations of Scooby-Doo were broadcast on ABC Saturday mornings in addition to first-run episodes. Airing under the titles Scooby-Doo Classics, Scary Scooby Funnies, The Best of Scooby-Doo, and Scooby's Mystery Funhouse, the rerun package remained on the air until the end of the 1986 season.
Scooby-Doo was restored to a standalone half-hour in 1983 with The New Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Show in 1983, which comprised two 11-minute mysteries per episode in a format reminiscent of the original Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! mysteries. Heather North returned to the voice cast as Daphne, who in this incarnation solved mysteries with Shaggy, Scooby, and Scrappy while working undercover as a reporter for a teen magazine.
This version of the show lasted for two seasons, with the second season airing under the title The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries. The 1984–85 season episodes featured semi-regular appearances from Fred and Velma, with Frank Welker and Marla Frumkin resuming their respective roles for these episodes.
1985 saw the debut of The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo, which featured Daphne, Shaggy, Scooby, Scrappy, and new characters Flim-Flam (voiced by Susan Blu) and Vincent Van Ghoul (based upon and voiced by Vincent Price) traveling the globe to capture "thirteen of the most terrifying ghosts upon the face of the earth." The final first-run episode of The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo aired in December 1985, and after its reruns were removed from the ABC lineup the following March, no new Scooby series aired on the network for the next two years.
Hanna-Barbera reincarnated the original Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! cast as elementary school students (a common trope in 1980s children's TV) for a new series titled A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, which debuted on ABC in 1988. A Pup Named Scooby-Doo was an irreverent re-imagining of the series, heavily inspired by the classic cartoons of Tex Avery and Bob Clampett, and eschewed the realistic aesthetic of the original Scooby series for a more Looney Tunes-like style, including an episode where Scooby-Doo's parents show up and reveal his real name to be "Scoobert". At the same time, the series returned to its original formula in that the group unmasked human villains in costume, as opposed to the supernatural monsters of the early to mid-1980s. The series also established "Coolsville" as the name of the gang's hometown; this setting was retained for several of the later Scooby productions. The retooled show was a success, remaining in production for four seasons and on ABC's lineup until 1991.
A Pup Named Scooby-Doo was developed and produced by Tom Ruegger, who had been the head story editor on Scooby-Doo since 1983. Following the first season of A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, Ruegger and much of his unit defected from Hanna-Barbera to Warner Bros. Animation to develop Steven Spielberg Presents Tiny Toon Adventures and later Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain, and Freakazoid!.
From 1987 to 1988, Hanna-Barbera Productions produced Hanna-Barbera Superstars 10, a series of syndicated television films featuring their most popular characters, including Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound, The Flintstones, and The Jetsons. Scooby-Doo, Scrappy-Doo and Shaggy starred in three of these films: Scooby-Doo Meets the Boo Brothers (1987), Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School (1988), and Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf (1988). These three films took their tone from the early-1980s Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo entries, and featured the characters encountering actual monsters and ghosts rather than masqueraded people. Scooby-Doo and Shaggy later appeared as the narrators of the television film Arabian Nights, originally broadcast by TBS in 1994, Don Messick's final outing as the original voice of Scooby-Doo.
Reruns of Scooby-Doo have been in syndication since 1980, and have also been shown on cable television networks such as TBS Superstation (until 1989) and USA Network (as part of the USA Cartoon Express from 1990 to 1994). In 1993, A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, having just recently ended its network run on ABC, began reruns on the Cartoon Network. With Turner Broadcasting purchasing Hanna-Barbera in 1991, in 1994 the Scooby-Doo franchise became exclusive to the Turner networks: Cartoon Network, TBS Superstation, and TNT. Canadian network Teletoon began airing Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! in 1997, with the other Scooby series soon following. When TBS and TNT ended their broadcasts of H-B cartoons in 1998, Scooby-Doo became the exclusive property of both Cartoon Network and sister station Boomerang.
With Scooby-Doo's restored popularity in reruns on Cartoon Network, Warner Bros. Animation and Hanna-Barbera (by then a subsidiary of Warner Bros. following the merger of Time Warner and Turner Entertainment in 1996) began producing one new Scooby-Doo direct-to-video film a year, beginning in 1998. These films featured a slightly older version of the original five-character cast from the Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! days. The first four DTV entries were Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island (1998), Scooby-Doo! and the Witch's Ghost (1999), Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders (2000), and Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase (2001). Frank Welker was the only original voice cast member to return for these productions. Don Messick had died in 1997 and Casey Kasem, a strict vegetarian, relinquished the role of Shaggy after having to provide the voice for a 1995 Burger King commercial. Therefore, Scott Innes took over as both Scooby-Doo and Shaggy (Billy West voiced Shaggy in Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island). B.J. Ward took over as Velma, and Mary Kay Bergman voiced Daphne until her death in November 1999, and was replaced by Grey DeLisle.
These first four direct-to-video films differed from the original series format by placing the characters in plots with a darker tone and pitting them against actual supernatural forces. Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, featured the original 1969 gang, reunited after years of being apart, fighting voodoo-worshiping cat creatures in the Louisiana bayou. Scooby-Doo! and the Witch's Ghost featured an author (voice of Tim Curry) returning to his Massachusetts hometown with the gang, to find out that an event is being haunted by the author's dead ancestor Sarah, who was an actual witch. The Witch's Ghost introduced a goth rock band known as The Hex Girls, who became recurring characters in the Scooby-Doo franchise.
Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase was the final production made by the Hanna-Barbera studio, which was absorbed into parent company Warner Bros. Animation following William Hanna's death in 2001. Warner Animation continued production of the direct-to-video series while also producing new Scooby-Doo series for television.
The direct-to-video productions continued to be produced concurrently with at least one entry per year. Two of these entries, Scooby-Doo! and the Legend of the Vampire and Scooby-Doo! and the Monster of Mexico (both 2003) were produced in a retro-style reminiscent of the original series, and featured Heather North and Nicole Jaffe as the voices of Daphne and Velma, respectively. Later entries produced between 2004 and 2009 were done in the style of What's New, Scooby-Doo, using that show's voice cast. Entries from 2010 on use the original 1969 designs and feature Matthew Lillard as the voice of Shaggy, the character Lillard portrayed in the live-action theatrical Scooby-Doo films. Two Scooby-Doo! movies were released in 2016, named Lego Scooby-Doo! Haunted Hollywood and Scooby-Doo! and WWE: Curse of the Speed Demon.
A feature-length live-action film version of Scooby-Doo was released by Warner Bros. Pictures on June 14, 2002. Directed by Raja Gosnell, the film starred Freddie Prinze Jr. as Fred, Sarah Michelle Gellar as Daphne, Matthew Lillard as Shaggy, and Linda Cardellini as Velma. Scooby-Doo, voiced by Neil Fanning, was created on-screen by computer-generated special effects. Scooby-Doo was a financially successful release, with a domestic box office gross of over US$130 million.
A sequel, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, followed in March 2004 with the same cast and director. Scooby-Doo 2 earned US$84 (€55.98) million at the U.S. box office. A third film was planned, but later scrapped following Warner Bros.' disappointment at the returns from Scooby-Doo 2.
In addition, a live-action television film, Scooby-Doo! The Mystery Begins, was released on DVD and simultaneously aired on Cartoon Network on September 13, 2009, the 40th anniversary of the series' debut. The film starred Nick Palatas as Shaggy, Robbie Amell as Fred, Kate Melton as Daphne, Hayley Kiyoko as Velma, and Frank Welker as the voice of Scooby-Doo. A second live-action TV movie, Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster, retained the same cast and aired on October 16, 2010, and a direct-to-video spin-off Daphne & Velma in 2018. The Mystery Begins and Curse of the Lake Monster serve as prequels, taking place before the events of the 2002 film while Daphne and Velma serves as a spin-off.
Main article: Scoob!
As of 2013, Warner Bros. Pictures was developing a fully animated Scooby-Doo feature film with Atlas Entertainment. Charles Roven and Richard Suckle, who produced the first two live-action films, were producing the animated film, and Matt Lieberman was writing the film. In 2014, Warner Bros. was restarting the film series with Randall Green writing a new movie. As of 2015, Warner Bros. had Tony Cervone directing an animated film, with Allison Abbate as producer and Dan Povenmire as executive producer. Originally planned for a September 21, 2018 release, it was later pushed back to May 15, 2020, with Dax Shepard co-directing and co-writing. The Hollywood Reporter announced that Frank Welker will be reprising his voice role as Scooby, and that he will be joined by Will Forte and Gina Rodriguez voicing Shaggy and Velma, while Tracy Morgan will be voicing Captain Caveman, from the Hanna-Barbera series Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels and Deadline reported that Zac Efron and Amanda Seyfried will voice Fred and Daphne. In addition, Ken Jeong will be voicing Dynomutt, Dog Wonder from Hanna-Barbera series of the same name and Kiersey Clemons will voice Dee Dee Sykes, a character from Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels. Dick Dastardly, from Hanna-Barbera's Wacky Races, will be the film's main antagonist, voiced by Jason Isaacs. In March 2020, the film's theatrical release was delayed indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On April 22, 2020, Warner Bros. announced that due to movie theater closures the theatrical release for Scoob! had been cancelled, with the film released instead on Premium Video On Demand in the United States and Canada on May 15, 2020, the original date of release. In July 2020, Warner Bros. confirmed the film would still play in theaters in select countries with relaxed COVID-19 restrictions. The film subsequently received a secondary theatrical release in the United States beginning on May 21, 2021, in selected markets.
In 2002, following the successes of the Cartoon Network reruns, the direct to video franchise, and the first feature film, Scooby-Doo returned to Saturday morning for the first time in a decade with What's New, Scooby-Doo?, which aired on Kids' WB from 2002 until 2006. Produced by Warner Bros. Animation, the show follows the format of the original series but places it in the 21st century, featuring a heavy promotion of modern technology (computers, DVD, the Internet, cell phones) and culture.
Beginning with this series, Frank Welker took over as Scooby's voice actor, while continuing to provide the voice of Fred as well. Casey Kasem returned as Shaggy, on the condition that the character be depicted as a vegetarian like Kasem himself. Grey DeLisle continued to voice Daphne, and former Facts of Life star Mindy Cohn voiced Velma. The series was produced by Chuck Sheetz, who had worked on The Simpsons.
In September 2006 a new show entitled, Shaggy & Scooby-Doo Get a Clue!, debuted on The CW's Kids' WB Saturday-morning programming block. In the new premise, Shaggy inherits money and a mansion from an uncle, an inventor who has gone into hiding from villains trying to steal his secret invention. The villains, led by "Dr. Phibes" (based primarily upon Dr. Evil from the Austin Powers series, and named after Vincent Price's character from The Abominable Dr. Phibes), then use different schemes to try to get the invention from Shaggy and Scooby, who handle the plots alone. Fred, Daphne, and Velma are normally absent, but do make appearances at times to help. The characters were redesigned and the art style revised for the new series. Scott Menville voiced Shaggy in the series, with Casey Kasem appearing as the voice of Shaggy's Uncle Albert. Shaggy & Scooby-Doo Get a Clue! ran for two seasons on The CW.
Main article: Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated
The next Scooby series, Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, premiered on Cartoon Network on April 5, 2010. The first Scooby series produced for cable television, Mystery Incorporated is a reboot of the franchise, re-establishing the characters' relationships, personalities, and locations, and expanding their world to feature their parents, high school, and neighbors. The series also borrowed pieces from many parts of Scooby-Doo's long history, as well as characters and elements of other Hanna-Barbera shows to form its back story and the bases of some of its episodes. Matthew Lillard was brought over from the live-action theatrical series as the new voice of Shaggy, while Welker, Cohn, and DeLisle continued in their respective roles. Patrick Warburton, Linda Cardellini, Lewis Black, Vivica A. Fox, Gary Cole, Udo Kier, Tim Matheson, Tia Carrere, and Kate Higgins were added as new semi-regular cast members. Casey Kasem appeared in a recurring role as Shaggy's father, one of his last roles before retiring due to declining health.
The series, while still following the basic mystery-solving format of its predecessors, was broadcast as a 52-chapter animated televised novel and included elements similar to live-action mystery/adventure shows such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Lost. An overarching mystery surrounding the gang's hometown of Crystal Cove, California became the series' main story arc, with pieces to the mystery unfolding episode by episode. Also featured were romantic entanglements and interpersonal conflict between the lead characters. The series ran for 52 episodes over two seasons, with a three-part finale airing across April 4 and 5, 2013—exactly three years from the debut.
Main article: Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!
On March 10, 2014, Cartoon Network announced several new series based on classic cartoons, including a new Scooby-Doo animated series titled Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!. The show features the gang "living it up" the summer after the gang's senior year of high school. Along the way, they run into monsters and mayhem. The series premiered October 5, 2015 on Cartoon Network and concluded on March 18, 2018.
Main article: Scooby-Doo and Guess Who?
On May 23, 2018, Boomerang announced that a new Scooby-Doo series titled Scooby-Doo and Guess Who? would be released sometime in 2019. The series is currently airing on the Boomerang streaming service and app since it premiered on June 27, 2019. The series features the Mystery Inc. gang teaming up with a variety of guest stars to solve mysteries. Confirmed guest stars include Halsey, Sia, Bill Nye, Mark Hamill, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Ricky Gervais, Kenan Thompson, and Chris Paul. The series also includes fictional guest stars, including Jaleel White as Steve Urkel, Kevin Conroy as Batman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, and Sherlock Holmes.
On February 10, 2021, it was announced that Velma will have her own series, to be released on HBO Max. The series, Velma, is set to air in 2023, and will be adult-oriented. The series is a prequel to the main franchise, taking place before the formation of Mystery Inc., and does not include Scooby-Doo himself. Unlike in the previous series and films, the main characters (and main voice cast) in Velma are multi-racial.
On May 23, 2022, it was announced that a CGI-animated adventure comedy preschool series starring Scooby-Doo and Shaggy titled Scooby-Doo! and the Mystery Pups will be released on HBO Max and Cartoonito in 2024.
Beginning in 2012, Warner Bros. Animation began producing direct-to-video special episodes in the style of the concurrently produced films for inclusion on Scooby-Doo compilation DVD sets otherwise including episodes from previous Scooby series. These include Scooby-Doo! Spooky Games, included on the July 2012 release Scooby-Doo! Laff-A-Lympics: Spooky Games, Scooby-Doo! Haunted Holidays, from the October 2012 release Scooby-Doo! 13 Spooky Tales: Holiday Chills and Thrills, and Scooby-Doo! and the Spooky Scarecrow and Scooby-Doo! Mecha Mutt Menace, from the September 2013 DVD releases Scooby-Doo! 13 Spooky Tales: Run for Your 'Rife! and Scooby-Doo! 13 Spooky Tales: Ruh-Roh Robot!. On May 13, 2014, another episode, Scooby-Doo! Ghastly Goals was released on the Scooby-Doo! 13 Spooky Tales: Field of Screams DVD. On May 5, 2015, Scooby-Doo! and the Beach Beastie, the sixth direct-to-video special, was released on the Scooby-Doo! 13 Spooky Tales: Surf's Up Scooby-Doo DVD.
The direct-to-video series' 34th installment, Trick or Treat Scooby-Doo! (2022), made headlines for portraying Velma as a lesbian (by showing her "crushing big time" on a guest female character), which was in accordance with long-held fan speculation but had never previously been depicted.
Main article: List of Scooby-Doo characters
Gold Key Comics began publication of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! comic books in December 1969. The comics initially contained adaptations of episodes of the television show drawn by Phil DeLara, Jack Manning and Warren Tufts. The comic books later moved to all-original stories until ending with issue #30 in 1974. Several of these issues were written by Mark Evanier and drawn by Dan Spiegle. Charlton published Scooby comics, many drawn by Bill Williams, for 11 issues in 1975. From 1977 to 1979, Marvel Comics published nine issues of Scooby-Doo, all written by Evanier and drawn by Spiegel. Harvey Comics published reprints of the Charlton comics, as well as a handful of special issues, between 1993 and 1994.
In 1995, Archie Comics began publishing a monthly Scooby-Doo comic book, the first year of which featured Scrappy-Doo among its cast. Evanier and Spiegel worked on three issues of the series, which ended after 21 issues in 1997 when Warner Bros.' DC Comics acquired the rights to publish comics based on Hanna-Barbera characters. DC's Scooby-Doo series continues publication to this day. In 2013, DC began a digital bi-monthly comic book titled Scooby-Doo Team-Up, crossing over Mystery Inc. with other DC and Hanna-Barbera characters. Since then, the series has become a monthly comic book available in print.
In 2004, a limited series of a 100 comic books called Scooby-Doo! World of Mystery was released. In each issue, Mystery Inc. go from country to country solving mysteries. Each issue came with a pack of exclusive cards, with 350 in total able to be collected.
In 2016, DC launched a new monthly comic book entitled Scooby Apocalypse, with the characters being reinvented in a story set in a post-apocalyptic world, where monsters roam the streets and Scooby and the gang must find a way to survive at all costs, while also trying to find a way to reverse the apocalypse.
Early Scooby-Doo merchandise included a 1973 Milton Bradley board game, decorated lunch boxes, iron-on transfers, coloring books, story books, records, underwear, and other such goods. When Scrappy-Doo was introduced to the series in 1979, he, Scooby, and Shaggy became the foci of much of the merchandising, including a 1983 Milton-Bradley Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo board game. The first Scooby-Doo video game appeared in arcades in 1986, and has been followed by a number of games for both home consoles and personal computers. Scooby-Doo multivitamins also debuted at this time, and have been manufactured by Bayer since 2001.
Scooby-Doo merchandising tapered off during the late 1980s and early 1990s, but increased after the series' revival on Cartoon Network in 1995. Today, all manner of Scooby-Doo-branded products are available for purchase, including Scooby-Doo breakfast cereal, plush toys, action figures, car decorations, Barbie dolls from Mattel and much more. Real "Scooby Snacks" dog treats are produced by Del Monte Pet Products. Hasbro has created a number of Scooby board games, including a Scooby-themed edition of the popular mystery board game Clue. In 2007, the Pressman Toy Corporation released the board game Scooby-Doo! Haunted House. Beginning in 2001, a Scooby-Doo children's book series was authorized and published by Scholastic. These books, written by Suzanne Weyn, include original stories and adaptations of Scooby theatrical and direct-to-video features.
From 1990 to 2002, Shaggy and Scooby-Doo appeared as characters in the Funtastic World of Hanna-Barbera simulator ride at Universal Studios Florida. The ride was replaced in the early 2000s with a Jimmy Neutron attraction, and The Funtastic World of Hanna-Barbera instead became an attraction at several properties operated by Paramount Parks. Shaggy and Scooby-Doo are currently costumed characters at Universal Studios Florida, and can be seen driving the Mystery Machine around the park.
In 2001, Scooby-Doo in Stagefright, a live stage play based upon the series, began touring across the world. A follow-up, Scooby-Doo and the Pirate Ghost, followed in 2009.
The Mystery Machine has been used as the basis for many die-cast models and toys, such as from Hot Wheels.
The brand made $800 million in retail sales in 1999.In 2004, Scooby-Doo merchandise had generated $1 billion in retail sales Licensed merchandise also sold $496 million in 2015, $501 million in 2016, and $353 million in 2017.
|Scooby-Doo... Where Are You! Game||Board game||Milton Bradley||1973|
|Scooby-Doo.. och Monstret||Alga||1978|
|Scooby-Doo Game||Milton Bradley||1980|
|Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo Game||1983|
|Clue: Scooby-Doo! Where Are You?||Parker Brothers||1999|
|Scooby-Doo! Mystery Card Game||Card game||United States Playing Card Company||1999|
|Scooby-Doo! Betrayal at Mystery Mansion||Board Game||Avalon Hill||2020|
|Scooby-Doo: Escape from the Haunted Mansion||Board Game||USAopoly||2020|
Main article: List of Scooby-Doo media § Seasonal shows
|Season premiere||Season finale||Network|
|1||1||Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!||17||September 13, 1969||January 17, 1970||CBS|
|2||8||September 12, 1970||October 31, 1970|
|2||1||The New Scooby-Doo Movies||16||September 9, 1972||December 23, 1972|
|2||8||September 8, 1973||October 27, 1973|
|3||1||The Scooby-Doo Show /
The Scooby/Dynomutt Hour
|16||September 11, 1976||December 18, 1976||ABC|
|2||The Scooby-Doo Show /
|8||September 10, 1977||October 29, 1977|
|3||The Scooby-Doo Show /
Where Are You!
|16||9||September 9, 1978||November 4, 1978|
|The Scooby-Doo Show /
|7||November 11, 1978||December 23, 1978|
|4||1||Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo ('79)[nb 1]||16||September 22, 1979||January 5, 1980|
|5||1||Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo ('80) /
The Richie/Scooby Show
|13||November 8, 1980||January 31, 1981|
|2||7||September 19, 1981||October 31, 1981|
|3||Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo ('80) /
The Scooby & Scrappy/Puppy Hour
|13||September 25, 1982||December 18, 1982|
|6||1||The New Scooby and Scrappy Show||September 10, 1983||December 10, 1983|
|2||The New Scooby and Scrappy Show /
The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries
|September 8, 1984||December 1, 1984|
|7||1||The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo[nb 2]||September 7, 1985||December 7, 1985|
|8||1||A Pup Named Scooby-Doo[nb 3]||September 10, 1988||December 10, 1988|
|2||8||September 9, 1989||November 4, 1989|
|3||3||September 8, 1990||November 3, 1990|
|4||August 3, 1991||August 17, 1991|
|9||1||What's New, Scooby-Doo?[nb 4]||14||September 14, 2002||March 22, 2003||The WB|
|2||September 13, 2003||March 27, 2004|
|3||14||13||January 29, 2005||April 16, 2006|
|1||June 21, 2006||Cartoon Network|
|10||1||Shaggy & Scooby-Doo Get a Clue!||13||September 23, 2006||May 5, 2007||The CW|
|2||September 22, 2007||March 15, 2008|
|11||1||Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated[nb 5]||26||April 5, 2010||July 26, 2011||Cartoon Network|
|2||July 30, 2012||April 5, 2013|
|12||1||Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!||26||20||October 5, 2015||March 12, 2016|
|6||June 20, 2017||Boomerang|
|2||15||September 28, 2017||December 22, 2017||Boomerang SVOD|
|11||March 8, 2018||March 18, 2018||Boomerang|
|13||1||Scooby-Doo and Guess Who?||13||June 27, 2019||September 19, 2019||Boomerang SVOD (episodes 1–41)|
HBO Max (episodes 42–52)
|13||July 2, 2020|
|2||26||October 1, 2020||October 1, 2021|
During its five-decade broadcast history, Scooby-Doo has received two Emmy nominations: a 1989 Daytime Emmy nomination for A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, and a 2003 Daytime Emmy nomination for What's New, Scooby-Doo's Mindy Cohn in the "Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program" category. Science advocate Carl Sagan favorably compared the predominantly skeptic oriented formula to that of most television dealing with paranormal themes, and considered that an adult analogue to Scooby-Doo would be a great public service.
Scooby-Doo has maintained a significant fan base, which has grown steadily since the 1990s due to the show's popularity among both young children and nostalgic adults who grew up with the series. Several television critics have stated that the show's mix of the comedy-adventure and horror genres was the reason for its widespread success. As Fred Silverman and the Hanna-Barbera staff had planned when they first began producing the series, Scooby-Doo's ghosts, monsters and spooky locales tend more towards humor than horror, making them easily accessible to younger children. "Overall, [Scooby-Doo is] just not a show that is going to overstimulate kids' emotions and tensions," offered American Center for Children and Media executive director David Kleeman in a 2002 interview. "It creates just enough fun to make it fun without getting them worried or giving them nightmares.
Older teenagers and adults have admitted to enjoying Scooby-Doo because of presumed subversive themes which involve theories of drug use and sexuality, in particular that Shaggy is assumed to be a user of cannabis and Velma is assumed to be a lesbian. Such themes were pervasive enough in popular culture to find their way into Warner Bros.' initial Scooby-Doo feature film in 2002, though several of the scenes were edited before release to secure a family-friendly "PG" rating. Series creators Joe Ruby and Ken Spears reported that they "took umbrage" to the inclusion of such themes in the Scooby-Doo feature and other places, and denied intending their characters to be drug users in any way.
Like many Hanna-Barbera shows, the early Scooby-Doo series have been criticized at times for their production values and storytelling. In 2002, Jamie Malanowski of The New York Times commented that "[Scooby-Doo's] mysteries are not very mysterious, and the humor is hardly humorous. As for the animation—well, the drawings on your refrigerator may give it competition."
By the 2000s, Scooby-Doo had received recognition for its popularity by placing in a number of top cartoon or top cartoon character polls. The August 3, 2002, issue of TV Guide featured its list of the 50 Greatest Cartoon Characters of All Time, in which Scooby-Doo placed twenty-second. Scooby also ranked thirteenth in Animal Planet's list of the 50 Greatest TV Animals. For one year from 2004 to 2005, Scooby-Doo held the Guinness World Record for having the most episodes of any animated television series ever produced, a record previously held by and later returned to The Simpsons. Scooby-Doo was published as holding this record in the 2006 edition of the Guinness Book of Records.
In January 2009, entertainment website IGN named Scooby-Doo #24 on its list of the Top 100 Best Animated TV Shows. Writing in 2020, Christopher Orr of The Atlantic queried why the franchise had remained popular for several decades, concluding that it was primarily due to the many differing ways in which the relationship between the main characters could be interpreted or used as a metaphor.
As with most popular franchises, Scooby-Doo has been parodied and has done parodies.
The Great Dane was supposed to be the biggest dog around ... and there was a woman [at the studio] who actually bred and reared Great Danes. So, she came over, and spent a solid hour describing all of the positive things that makes a prize-winning Great Dane. And I selected about five things, I think, and went in the opposite direction. For instance, a good, strong straight back, so I sloped his back. A strong chin, so I under-swung his chin ... and I think straight hind legs she mentioned. So I bowed them ...
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That character [Fred] started out ... I think his name was 'Geoff' ... and then he became 'Harvey'. And then all of a sudden, Fred [Silverman] came in and said [the character] was going to be 'Fred'. So, I guess he had something to do with that.
Fred was based on Dobie, Velma on Zelda, Daphne on Thalia and Shaggy on Maynard.
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