“The story I’m about to tell you is Camp Little Moose’s darkest secret. A tale so terrifying, if your parents knew, they’d never a sent you here in the first place.”
Scooby Doo has spanned generations and over 40 years. Since the 1960’s the name and conventions have become a part of the pop culture. The original cartoon series had a series of conventions. The Scooby Gang would drive around in their green Mystery Machine van and solve ghostly mysteries. Fans of the show quickly grew to learn that these spirits and goblins were usually just normal people using scare tactics to get revenge or make a profit. The cartoon classic spawned music albums, live action movies, and several new shows and animated features.
The jokes haven’t changed much, even if the voices have. Frank Welker, who voiced Freddie briefly in 1970, returns as Freddie and Scooby Doo. Unfortunately Don Messick died in 1997, and Welker has been voicing the pup since that time and before. Mindy Cohn has been voicing Velma since 2004, replacing a line of actors starting with Nicole Jaffe. What’s important is that Casey Kasem does not return as Shaggy, a part he’s played since 1969. That part now goes to Matthew Lilard. Don’t get me wrong, he does a fine job, but this was the most unmistakable voice in the mix up until now. Older fans will notice the change with sadness. Part of me is very glad to see that Scooby and the gang are still out there working for Scooby Snax. The charm remains, even if the jokes don’t appear quite as funny anymore. There’s one where Freddie reminisces about the day he went up Schmidt Creek without a paddle.
Freddie is eager to return to his old summer campgrounds at Camp Little Moose. He spent many a summer here as a young boy. Now he’s convinced the gang to join him, this time as camp counselors. Shaggy and Scooby are fine with the idea, so long as there aren’t any ghosts. Sorry Shag. When they arrive at the rundown camp, they discover it is being shut down. It appears that the star of one of the camp’s famous campfire legends has actually come to life. The Axe Man is terrorizing the camp. Freddie won’t let a little mystery stop the camp from opening, and when a busload of young campers does arrive, he’s eager to be their mentor.
But times have changed. The new kids aren’t interested in the old-school camp activities. They’d rather play video games or chat on the computer. The only reason these kids climb a tree is to get better cell reception. But the new kids are the least of the gang’s troubles. All of the old camp stories are coming true. Before you know it, the gang is hip-deep in monsters.
Scooby Doo is presented in its original 1.78:1 aspect ratio. The colors are actually pretty good here. The entire image is very bright and sharp. Black levels are above average. The animation is clean and smooth. Certainly, Scooby didn’t look this good back in the day. The print is clean, and I saw no real compression problems.
The Dolby Digital 5.1 track does exactly what it was originally intended to do. It delivers dialog and some mid-range music. Nothing to write home about, but nothing to distract. A perfectly average presentation.
Bonus Scooby Doo Mystery Incorporated episode: Beware The Beast From Below
and Scooby Doo Camp Stories.
Just in time for Halloween, we’ve got a brand-new Scooby adventure. Even if the film appears to be summer-themed, any Scooby Gang mystery works at Halloween. The show features some real bubblegum-pop summer songs. There’s a voice appearance by Mark Hamill as well. You could do worse than Scooby Doo, you know? The gang takes on not one, not two, but three monsters in this one. “Now they’re just showing off.”