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Which are you?
Fred 4%
Daphne 3%
Velma 11%
Shaggy 16%
Scooby 3%
A person who was raised to appreciate the finer things in life, and not to waste time on silly cartoons. 29%
Yo, fuck you, man: I *liked* Speed Buggy! 32%

Votes: 62

 Don't Do What Scooby-Doo Does

 Author:  Topic:  Posted:
Jun 18, 2002
So, Scooby-Doo: the first and easily the greatest of all Hanna-Barbera ghost-hunter cartoons. A cast that seemed to be drawn from the primal ur-archetypes deep within humanity's all-consciousness. Fred, the big lunky guy, Daphne, the hot, scarlet-tressed chick, Velma, the zaftig brainy chick, Shaggy, the wiry, squeaky-voiced, nervous guy (and crpto-stoner), and Scooby: A talking dog, man. They solved crimes, revealed terrifying ghosts to be nothing more than projections of human venality. All the big questions: courage vs. self-interest, truth vs. belief, the individual vs. the group, reason vs. emotion, looking for clues vs. eating chocolate covered fried baloney and pickle sandwiches, all set out in cheapass lets-recycle-the-backdrop animation every Saturday morning.

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Myron Schell, inventor of "first post!", dead at 47
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Fellowship Of The Rings Comparative Movie Review
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9/11 and Class Conflict
I'm very disappointed with Noam Chomsky
Thoughts on Lee Harvey Oswald's widow's affair with his Brother
Blade II And The Twilight Of Science
The Time To Act Is Now
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Four Spider-Man movies reviewed
Can't Sleep? Blame God.
Summer Blockbuster Showdown!!!
So powerful was the spell of this simple television show - millions of boys, gnashing their teeth through "Schoolhouse Rock": "C'mon, END! I dont give a fuck about adjectives, give us Daphne shakin' her thang in them purple tights!!" - that for a generation of children, those cartoons were like Proust's mom coming upstairs for tuckins and kissys, the indelible, lingering images of our childhoods.

Hanna-Barbera would repeatedly attempt to recreate the Scooby formula, with disappointing results: "Speed Buggy" (callow, annoying), "Jabberjaws" (halfassed, embarrassing), "The Funky Phantom" (Please-God-make-it-stop-awful, like watching maggots emerge from your own flesh). The Scooby cartoons themselves were doomed to quickly degenerate into gimmickry, stunt casting, and repetitive, phoned-in horseshit. Still, the Scrappys, the C-list-celebrity guests, Scoobies Dum and Dee, and a whole pile of other godawful crap I've managed to repress, all this was not enough to sink the franchise. Scooby lives on in our hearts and minds.

And yet.

This new thing, this "Scooby-Doo Movie", does it represent some kind of transgression against, um, all that is good and civilized? Well, no. Scooby-Doo cartoons seem real great to a five-year-old, but then so does the prospect of subsisting on Snickers Bars for the next eighty years. I mean, didn't that sentence "Scooby lives on in our hearts and minds" make you wince (if not, seek help)? So my take was: "let them make a "hip" "ironic", Gap-Ad Scooby-Doo movie. Hell, I liked Zoolander, I didn't think Charlies Angels was a complete waste of time (shaddup!) - maybe this new movie will be good".

Having seen it... well... the movie isn't a complete waste of time: as the saying goes, it has some brilliant moments, and some interminable five-minute stretches. Long story short, the film is a sexed-up (male and lesbian viewers will find themselves spending a considerable portion of the second half of the film ogling Velma's tits. Think about that for a minute), violent, grossed-out (the movie contains pee and fart jokes, but no humor involving scatophilia or fistfucking: presumably these will be included in the director's cut), "ironic", revisionist treatment of the Scooby mythos, sort of along the lines of what Frank Miller did in Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, only stupider, and in movie form. And just as Miller's comic book is the sort of thing that passes for serious literature among fourteen-year-olds, I'm sure the towering intellects behind the Scooby-Doo movie are, in between lines of coke, congratulating themselves for being Kevin Smith or David Foster Wallace or whomever. The Scooby-Doo movie is sort of intresting as an exercise in missed opportunites, and worth checking out for free, but if you are going to shell out eight dollars, I recommend buying beer instead.

And yet.

Thirty tears on, flipping channels. Scooby Doo rerun, classic Scoob, first season. Madeline moment: all the constituents of childhood experience flood back into the field of being like a tape being played. That dark brown couch that left courdoroy marks under the thighs; Fruity Pebbles made milk sweet and colorful and grainy: skim off the sludgy flakes floating on top and slurp 'em down, then drink the orange-brown milk; Daphne is so beautiful: one day you will marry her, like with Mom and Dad, presently asleep in their bedroom. A child reflects on phenomenology: Mom and Dad are sleeping, for them this moment, this whole episode of Scooby, is not happening: how can it be that time is for them rushing by infinitely fast, while for you it moves along at normal pace? Where does the time go for them? Where has the time gone for you? Where are you, Scooby-Doo?


bravo! (1.00 / 1) (#1)
by topaztic on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 06:41:29 AM PST
very insightful but how can i completely trust someone who did not find charlies angel's (the movie, i presume) a complete waste of time?

And who does not recognize that Fred and Daphne were not actually key characters but mere, if handsome, window dressing for the menage of Scooby & Shaggy & Velma?

obviously, by making velma a lesbian, the films makers were trying to mask the real perversion, or to add to it. I just hope that they did not mess with the chemistry between the three.

Charlie's Angels. (1.00 / 1) (#3)
by hauntedattics on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 10:24:00 AM PST
Charlie's Angels was my second-favorite show as a kid, right after Scooby-Doo. While the movie couldn't even hope to live up to the mystique that Kelly, Jill and Sabrina created, it was enjoyable nonetheless.

Please tell me that you're not one of those tiresome people that will only watch movies with "meaning" or "subtext" or some philosophical orientation. Sometimes movies are just entertainment. Which is fine.

(Was anyone else as freaked out by the KISS-esque ghost as I was? I remember having nightmares for days after that episode.)

Charlies Angels (3.00 / 1) (#5)
by topaztic on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 12:05:22 PM PST
You can rest easy, I am not adverse to "fluff" movies. Being an escapist by nature I enjoy most movies i watch including the TV series re-do genre such as, The Beverly Hillbillies, The Brady Bunch Movie, the Addams Family and the sequels, so I obviously do not require MUCH of a plot. charlies angels (the movie) is only topped by Pokeman I, II, III...etc, as Movies I Will Never Sit Through Again, EVER.

After a brief and not to thourough introspection as to the reasons that Charlies Angels fell flat for me. I think that besides the lack of camp, it is because they failed to nail the characters essence, making it impossible to tell which was the smart one, which was the pretty one and which was the T&A draw, nor did they even attempt to exploit the mystique of charlie, or the relationship between him and the angels as well as I remembered it, but of course i could be misremembering both since one was 25+ years ago and the other was totally forgetable.

Personally, after I see this summers offerings up of Nick Cage and Hugh, I will just be waiting patiently for the Dukes of Hazard movie, I hear that they are looking at Burt Reynolds to play Sherrif Hogg, but they are having a hard time finding a car to play the General E. Lee.

Pokemon? (5.00 / 1) (#6)
by budlite on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 04:12:54 PM PST
I am seriously worried about the mentality of any grown-up who would willingly sit through a Pokemon movie even once.

There are much better animated films out there.

Princess Mononoke, Laputa: Castle In The Sky, Slayers, Blood: The Last Vampire.

Similarly, there are far superior TV series and anime OVAs.

Cowboy Bebop, Kenshin, Slayers (OVA and Slayers Try), Gokudo, Macross Plus, Childs Toy, and the purely insane Digi Charat.

I know what I've listed here is all anime, but please don't assume that I think Pokemon is anime by a long way.

sorry to prick your balloon (1.00 / 1) (#7)
by nathan on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 05:47:47 PM PST
But the last twenty minutes of Mononoke were just laughable.

Li'l Sis: Yo, that's a real grey area. Even by my lax standards.

Really? why? (n/t) (5.00 / 1) (#9)
by budlite on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 06:16:43 PM PST

Well, (5.00 / 1) (#10)
by because it isnt on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 06:35:56 PM PST
it's probably because Nathan's of the psuedointellectual Christian persuasion, so not only does he find idol worship distasteful (oh my, they're worshipping spirits! Don't those fools know they're merely demiurges?!), but he finds the idea of humanity having any meaningful control over gods blatantly sacreligious. Hey God! You're dead! I just killed you!; Here's your head back Mister! Thankee very much! -- because it isn't

sorry for the delayed response, (none / 0) (#25)
by nathan on Mon Jun 24th, 2002 at 06:58:39 PM PST
As I have been busy having a life, but anyway.

I thought the last twenty minutes of Mononoke were stupid because they unravelled the rules of the rest of the movie. In particular, the cartoony bounding and leaping (while not inherently bad in itself if had been within the movie's internal logic) completely violated the physical rules established at the beginning. The protagonist is all but flying, tirelessly, over some damned rough terrain. I couldn't ignore that, it was just too jarring.

Li'l Sis: Yo, that's a real grey area. Even by my lax standards.

Well, to be honest, (none / 0) (#26)
by because it isnt on Mon Jun 24th, 2002 at 07:30:11 PM PST
I'd explained that one away to the spirit/cancer inside him reaching its zenith. The immortal words from an Eric Schwartz animation came to mind: Hey, it's a cartoon. You can do anything in a cartoon.

My favourite anime with incredible protagonist vitality is 3x3 Eyes, although it seems to be a trait of the action-anime genre. Perhaps Japanese cartoonists are overcompensating for something or other. -- because it isn't

who said it was willingly? (none / 0) (#8)
by topaztic on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 06:14:02 PM PST
it was by force, i assure you.

You forgot (5.00 / 1) (#11)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 06:41:19 PM PST
Metropolis and Ah! My Goddess the movie


I'm just talking about things I've seen. (5.00 / 1) (#12)
by budlite on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 06:54:11 PM PST
I have seen more than I listed, but I either can't remember it or didn't like it. Like, for instance, I saw Jin Rh, which was fairly good, but extremely confusing, and I've never wanted to actually watch it again. I also saw an episode of the series Neighbourhood Story, which I didn't like much either.

then see them (none / 0) (#13)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 07:29:49 PM PST
They are the best in my book, especially "Metropolis"; Its a must see


Call me out of touch (3.00 / 1) (#14)
by T Reginald Gibbons on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 08:25:10 PM PST
You aren't saying that Fritz Lang's Metropolis has been remade as a manga film, are you?

Yeah (none / 0) (#15)
by Anonymous Reader on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 09:27:37 PM PST
well not remade actually.....Tezuka Osamu (Creator of AstroBoy) only heard about the story about "A city where the rich and famous live on the top and the poor live at the bottom" and "The city being controlled by a female robot", he never saw the film. What I heard is that the anime film and German 1926 film are very similar.


I was terrified of the skull-head astronaut ghost. (none / 0) (#19)
by Chocolate Milkshake on Wed Jun 19th, 2002 at 01:15:11 AM PST
You know, coincidentally, your uid happens to be perfect for this discussion.

"Charlie's Angels" the movie. (1.00 / 1) (#4)
by tkatchev on Tue Jun 18th, 2002 at 12:03:33 PM PST
Wait, I seriously believed that the movie was a clever parody. Was I wrong?

Peace and much love...

I agree with your assesament. (none / 0) (#17)
by Chocolate Milkshake on Wed Jun 19th, 2002 at 12:23:12 AM PST
Plus, anytime there's a movie that features women in form-fitting bodysuits kicking people in the head, I'm pretty much going to enjoy it.

Me, too. (none / 0) (#24)
by hauntedattics on Sat Jun 22nd, 2002 at 01:39:29 PM PST
Although doubtless for different reasons. For me, it's all about homage to my heroine.

thanks. (3.00 / 2) (#18)
by Chocolate Milkshake on Wed Jun 19th, 2002 at 01:05:07 AM PST
But to address a few of your concerns:

who does not recognize that Fred and Daphne were not actually key characters but mere, if handsome, window dressing

I disagree. Fred and Daphne provided vital Aplha Male/Female counterbalance to the nerdier/stonier/doggier trio of Velma, Shaggy, and Scooby. They also did a lot of the legwork re: clue-finding and setting up ghost-trapping devices. Daphne also ended up getting captured a lot, and when rescued, was invariably found bound and gagged, the sight of which which gave many boys their earliest experiences with the myserious phenomenon of the boner.

the menage of Scooby & Shaggy & Velma (...) obviously, by making velma a lesbian, the films makers were trying to mask the real perversion

My bad. I did not mean to imply that the character of Velma as portrayed in the movie is a lesbian. She is not. Re: Scooby-Doo sex triangles, the standard joke when I was in high school went something like: Velma's hot for Daphne, but Daphne's hot for Fred, but too bad for her, cause Fred's hot for Shaggy, who's too busy doing bong hits to get it on with anybody. The only one who's satisfied is Scooby, because he can lick his own nuts.

how can i completely trust someone who did not find charlies angel's (the movie, i presume) a complete waste of time?

That's easy: you can't. See also below.

I hope they didnt forget... (1.00 / 1) (#20)
by Anonymous Reader on Wed Jun 19th, 2002 at 08:04:23 AM PST
I hope they didnt forget the scenes of scooby and shaggy taking bong hits in the back of the mystery machine (we all know what was going on in there)

You're not the only one. (none / 0) (#21)
by because it isnt on Wed Jun 19th, 2002 at 04:12:58 PM PST
I mean, look at how wide they can open their mouths to eat those huge sandwiches. Imagine what those mouths can do when huaghghahahghghghg -- because it isn't

dark brown corduroy couch (none / 0) (#22)
by Anonymous Reader on Fri Jun 21st, 2002 at 11:57:21 AM PST
I still have the dark brown corduroy couch! Goddamn! It's a 1970's relic that got handed down to me when the family decided to redecorate. The thing is still in good shape and it still leaves corduroy marks on your thighs. Rock on.

I was scared (none / 0) (#23)
by First Incision on Fri Jun 21st, 2002 at 10:32:29 PM PST
I vaguely remember watching a few episodes of Scooby as a very small child. I was extremely frightened by the ghosts, and decided to stop watching. I think there was one time where Batman and Robin made a guest appearance, and I tuned in until ghosts showed up.

But keep in mind, at this age, I thought the shows "Incredible Hulk" and "Battlestar Galactica" were real-life, and I believed science fiction information on "Superfriends" as scientific fact. (There must be plants on Venus, because they said so on Superfriends!)

I knew the basic premises of cartoons were make-believe. Pretty much the only live-action show I thought was make-believe was "Ripley's Believe it or Not." And yes, Jack Palance scared the hell out of me. But not as much as Scooby Doo monsters.
Do you suffer from late-night hacking? Ask your doctor about Protonix.


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