Why is Scrappy-Doo hated? Defend Scoob’s infamous nephew


There are a lot of things that i don’t understand Scooby doo franchise. I don’t understand why the confident and affable Velma in the first series has since become a cynical, deadpan nerd with self-esteem issues. I don’t understand why Scooby and Shaggy have become peripheral characters in so many of their own shows, at best unrelated to the plot and at worst an active hindrance for the gang. I do not understand why Scooby doo is a franchise at all; the formula can be entertaining, but there’s only a limited number of times I’m willing to sit in it, even with the real monster and the occasional design update. Most importantly, I don’t get the continued disdain for a pint-sized nephew named Scrappy Dappy Doo.

He was put to the test, Scrappy did. He was unceremoniously removed from the franchise in the late 1980s and has not been allowed to return to the TV series since. These few references which are made to him on the various emissions of recent years are pejorative. The misguided live-action movie of 2002 made him a maniacal villain. Harvey Birdman, lawyer liked to subject him to humiliating cameos, often like a corpse. Even Cartoon Network got started through one of their bumpers in the early 2000s. And “the Scrappy” has become a popular term for belatedly added characters rejected by fans.


Image via ABC

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Of course, that kind of outrage about a Saturday morning cartoon should always be taken with a giant shaker, especially in the age of Twitter and YouTube comment sections. It’s a safe bet that these rabid anti-fans have more volume than numbers. Still, Scrappy has taken pictures quite regularly over the past three decades, so there is something negative reception from fans. Is he really that bad?

Scooby fans who laugh at Scrappy and blame him for bringing down the franchise should know that Scrappy is the only reason Scooby doo survived long enough to reach the era of modern media franchising. In 1979, after three series and a line of gadgets ranging from guest celebrities to silly cousin Scrappy-Dum, Scooby doo in its traditional incarnation was on its last legs, and ABC was talking about cancellation. It was untenable for Hanna-Barbera, and they decided that what Scooby doo a new star character was needed. Joe barbera established the basic idea of ​​a little nephew named Scrappy-Doo, animator Iwo takamoto (probably) prepared a character design, and writer Marc Evanier developed the personality of Scrappy with Looney Tunes star Henry Hawk as a model. Evanier also wrote the script of what amounted to an unofficial pilot for Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo.


Image via ABC

It was, ultimately, the same old story: spooky mysteries ending with a masked guy. Only now there was an irascible puppy who wanted to fight the crooks instead of running away from them or solving the mystery. Scrappy’s cries of “Let me attack them!” And “puppy power!” ” (Apparently an ad-lib from a rejected voice actor that Barbera loved) sounded relentlessly with each new episode, and the action focused more and more on the trio of Scooby, Shaggy and Scrappy. Such attention was paid to them that in the second season Fred, Daphne and Velma were written. Daphne would sometimes join the cast, but for much of the 1980s, Scooby doo was a three-man team.

Scrappy did the job it was made to do; ABC didn’t cancel and the grades improved. The writers (at least some of them) even appreciated work with the character. But Scrappy got in trouble before he even got in the air. According to Évanier, the Standards and practices found it “too independent”, needing to be softened. Evanier successfully refuted their demands at a conference, but Hanna-Barbera relented nonetheless. Evanier ultimately concluded that Scrappy was not a good addition to the long-term cast, his ability to speak understandably compared to Scooby. “[tearing] the already fragile “reality”.A money dispute cost Scrappy his first voice actor. The fortuitous decision to have actual supernatural beings during the Scrappy years was a bigger upheaval in the formula that was not universally loved. And the fact that this new character burst onto the scene with equal billing on the title – as three core cast members were dumped – rubbed some fans the wrong way (and helped inspire Poochie on The simpsons years later).


Image via ABC

But as originally designed, Scooby doo was a series with five main characters and two personalities to share between them. Velma had a slogan and a gag with her glasses, but Fred and Daphne had hardly any distinguishing features. Daphne’s time away from the show didn’t earn her a personality every time she returned for a season or two, and the focus remained on Shaggy and the Dogs in any case. Whatever else you can say about him, Scrappy has a well-defined personality, which could affect the course of a story. Which was not always positive; review episodes of Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo for this post, I’ll gladly concede that Scrappy is a obnoxious little boy, aggressively pushed into every possible scene with catchphrases that are beaten to death – in his first season.

But Scrappy has evolved over time, much faster than the original cast. A season and a change in cast later, he had mellowed considerably, becoming more of a wide-eyed, greedy young detective than a so-called brawler. His blind, delusional adoration of his uncle Scooby has given way to a more realistic (but still affectionate) view of him. The narrowed cast would allow it to evolve further. As bland as they are, Fred and Velma gathered clues and solved mysteries, and along with Daphne, they delivered much of the exhibit and asked the necessary questions. With their departure, and with Shaggy and Scooby still played as comic book characters, Scrappy was left to take over, in effect becoming the straight man of the franchise – a younger, more lively, and active straight man who found the idea of ​​ghosts and goblins exciting.


Image via ABC

This was most evident in what you might call the Red Shirt Shaggy era. This franchise period began with The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo. Daphne (and Flim Flam, a much more heinous sidekick than Scrappy ever was) were still there, but when The 13 ghosts finished his very short run, Scooby doo has persisted as a series of TV movies with Scooby, Scrappy, and a paddle-swapped Shaggy mixed up in various supernatural situations. His red shirt seemed to give Shaggy a little more sense of responsibility, and as the only human in the main cast, he almost had to become more of a detective and a straight man. But it was Scrappy who embraced any adventure the gang got involved in and pursued the mysteries and monstrosities involved – and at this point, he did so without trying to “splash” anyone. either or to evoke the “power of puppies”.

Were these TV movies good? The ’80s as a whole aren’t exactly the most beloved era of Scooby-Doo, or animated television for that matter, and a padded, curvy film like Scooby-Doo meets the Boo brothers is not going to win an Emmys. Corn Scooby doo is a franchise for kids, and as a kid I enjoyed Scrappy and the Red Shirt Shaggy era as much as I enjoyed any other Scooby series – that is, quite well. Looking back as an adult, I don’t see a reason why Scrappy brought the franchise to its knees. Hanna-Barbera’s TV animation never had good production value, and the writing quality (never exactly Pulitzer-worthy) began to slip in long before Scrappy appeared. If Scrappy was pushed too aggressively on his first appearance – and was a bit too much of a twerp – he’s grown into a more tenable character over time.

Fred, Daphne, and Velma would eventually be back to stay, and more recent series and films have attempted to graft personalities onto them (often at the expense of any meaningful roles for Shaggy and Scooby). The efforts were moderately successful, but Scrappy still comes across as a stronger character during his ten-year stint. A clean cast with him, Shaggy, and Scooby has made this latest duo more effectively the true stars of what is nominally their show. And for their inequality, there was a sense of experimentation with the various ghostly encounters of the Red Shirt Shaggy period which is fun to watch, and at least offers a sort of break with the “man in the mask” phrase. So for all of these reasons – no, Scrappy wasn’t that bad. And if the franchise is to continue – which all signs point to, as baffling as I find it – then it might be worth giving Scoob’s nephew his own reintroduction.

KEEP READING: “Scooby-Doo” Animated Prequel “Velma,” Featuring Mindy Kaling, Coming to HBO Max


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