THE NEW SCOOBY-DOO MOVIES
(CBS, September 9, 1972-October 27, 1973)
Don Messick – Scooby-Doo, various
Casey Kasem – Norville “Shaggy” Rogers, various
Frank Welker – Fred Jones, various
Heather North – Daphne Blake
Nicole Jaffe – Velma Dinkley
For the background on Scooby-Doo, check out the post here.
|The gang gives Laurel and Hardy a lift.|
After two seasons of unmasking crooked culprits, Fred Silverman wanted to keep what was essentially his baby from becoming too stale. When the time came to renew Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! for a third season, Silverman decided to punch things up a bit with some slight tweaks to the show. Though fundamentally the same, the second incarnation of the franchise ran for a full hour (the first cartoon to do so with a single story and character rather than several segments with multiple characters) and introduced the concept of the celebrity team-up to the Scooby-verse.
|The title screens were replaced by announcing the guest-star(s) for the episode.|
The New Scooby-Doo Movies saw Scooby (Don Messick) and the gang teaming up with an assortment of guest stars who had managed to either be involved or entangled in the same mysteries the Scooby gang always fell into. The title cards from the previous series were replaced with Shaggy and Scooby looking at an image of the featured guest(s) and Shaggy (Casey Kasem) announcing them to the viewer. These guest stars ranged from real people to fictional characters, many of whom were either the stars of or eventual stars of Hanna-Barbera-produced shows.
Real-life celebrity guests included Don Adams, Sonny Bono, Cher, Tim Conway, Phyllis Diller, Sandy Duncan, Dick Van Dyke, Cass Elliot, Davy Jones, Don Knotts, Jerry Reed and JonathanWinters, all of whom provided their own voices. The Three Stooges, Moe Howard (Paul Winchell), Larry Fine (Joe Baker) and Curly-Joe (Frank Welker), were all voiced by imitators due to the poor health of Larry and Moe. The Stooges would later return in the Hanna-Barbera produced The Robonic Stooges.
On the fictional side were characters from Hanna-Barbera’s copies of Scooby-Doo; an attempt to try and duplicate the show’s success. They were the cast of Speed Buggy: Speed Buggy (Mel Blanc), Mark (Michael Bell), Debbie (Arlene Golonka) and Tinker (Phil Luther, Jr.); the cast of Jeannie: Jeannie (Julie McWhirter), Corey Anders (Mark Hamil in his first voice-acting role) and Babu (Joe Besser); and the cast of Josie and the Pussycats: Josie (Janet Waldo), Valerie (Barbara Pariot), Melody (Jackie Joseph), Alan M. (Jerry Dexter), Alexander Cabot III (Kasem), Alexandra Cabot (Sherry Alberoni) and Sebastian the cat (Messick).
|Freddy and The Three Stooges.|
With the same voice actors in tow, Batman (Olan Soule) and Robin (Kasem) appeared fresh off their stint in Filmation’s The Adventures of Batman . Both would go on to star in Hanna-Barbera’s Super Friends franchise. Making their first animated appearance was The Addams Family (John Astin, Carolyn Jones, Jackie Coogan and Ted Cassidy all reprised their roles from the earlier live-action series). The characters were drawn to resemble the original Charles Addams cartoons, and the popularity of their appearance led to their receiving their own Hanna-Barbera series in 1973.
|Mystery, Inc. meets the Harlem Globetrotters.|
Straddling the line between real celebrities being impersonated and Hanna-Barbera characters were the Harlem Globetrotters line-up of George “Meadowlark” Lemon (Scatman Crothers), Freddie “Curly” Neal (Stu Gillam), Hubert “Geese” Ausbie (Johnny Williams), Bobby Joe “B.J.” Mason (Eddie Anderson), J.C. “Gip” Gipson (Richard Elkins) and Pablo “Pabs” Robertson (Robert DoQui), all reprising their roles from the earlier Harlem Globe Trotters series. The comedy team of Stan Laurel (Larry Harmon) and Oliver Hardy (Jim MacGeorge) had also previously appeared in a series of 156 shorts by Hanna-Barbera in 1966.
The New Scooby-Doo Movies debuted on CBS on September 9, 1972. The show was written by Larz Bourne, Jameson Brewer, Tom Dagenais, Ruth Brooks Flippen, Fred Freiberger, Willie Gilbert, Heywood Kling, Bill Lutz, Larry Markes, Norman Maurer, Jack Mendelsohn, Sidney Morse, Ray Parker, Gene Thompson, Paul West and Harry Winkler, with Hoyt Curtin providing the music. It ran for two seasons and was rerun alongside Where Are You! until 1976. In the meantime, Silverman had moved to ABC to become the network president and revitalize their programming in much the same way he had for CBS. When CBS chose to let their option to Scooby expire, Silverman quickly snatched it up and brought Scooby and the gang over to ABC with him.
Because of the nature of the series, agreements had to be reached with the various guest stars and their estates in order to reproduce the episodes for home video. Unable to do so for some of them, in 2006 Turner Home Entertainment released The Best of the New Scooby-Doo Movies in the United States which contained 15 of the 24 episodes. The British version only had four episodes and was labeled as “Volume 1,” although no further volumes were released. The included episodes had an edited introduction that removed The Addams Family, Batman & Robin, The Harlem Globetrotters, The Three Stooges and Laurel & Hardy. However, in 2009, the supplemental DVDs Scooby-Doo Meets the Harlem Globetrotters and Scooby-Doo Meets Batman were released, each containing two episodes featuring the titular characters. The Batman & Robin episodes were later included as extras on the 2018 direct-to-video movie Scooby-Doo! & Batman: The Brave and the Bold. For Scooby’s 50th anniversary in 2019, WB was able to secure the rights to 8 of the missing 9 episodes and released them as a supplemental Best Of the New Scooby-Doo Movies Volume 2 and in an (Almost) Complete Collection on Blu-ray. To date, “Wednesday is Missing” was only made available on VHS by Worldvision Home Video in the United Kingdom as Scooby-Doo Meets the Addams Family. From 2014-19, DC Comics, who had been publishing Scooby comics since 1997, ran a series revisiting the concept of the show called Scooby-Doo! Team-Up. The series featured Scooby and the gang teaming-up with various DC superheroes and other Hanna-Barbera characters.
“Ghastly Ghostly Town” (9/8/72) – The gang helps the Three Stooges stop a giant bat from ruining their theme park: a real ghost town with real ghosts.
“The Dynamic Scooby-Doo Affair” (9/15/72) – The gang teams-up with Batman and Robin to uncover a counterfeiting ring supplying the Joker and Penguin.
“Wednesday is Missing” (9/22/72) – The gang ends up becoming the housekeepers for the Addams family when a giant vulture terrorizes the house and kidnaps Wednesday.
“The Frickert Fracas” (9/29/72) – Jonathan Winters invites the gang to Maude Frickert’s chicken farm to help her find a secret formula before a scarecrow gets it first.
“Guess Who’s Knott Coming to Dinner?” (10/6/72) – The gang takes shelter in a mansion where everyone believes them to be relatives of the late Captain Moody, including Don Knotts.
“A Good Medium is Rare” (10/13/72) – Phyllis Diller’s fortune is sought after by a gargoyle, and she recruits the gang to help her after they return her dog to her.
“Sandy Duncan’s Jekyll and Hyde” (10/20/72) – Sandy Duncan’s movie is disrupted by various monsters, prompting the gang and a lovestruck Scooby to help her.
“The Secret of Shark Island” (10/27/72) – The gang runs into Sonny and Cher at a hotel that’s under siege by the Shark God Pescado Diabolico and his Shark Men.
“The Spooky Fog of Juneberry” (11/4/72) – Don Knotts and a mysterious fog lead to mayhem in the western town of Juneberry.
“The Ghost of Bigfoot” (11/11/72) – The gang helps Laurel and Hardy solve the mystery of the ghost of Bigfoot terrorizing a popular ski resort.
“The Ghost of the Red Baron” (11/18/72) – The ghost of Manfred von Richthofen terrorizes the Three Stooges when Curly-Joe takes a crop-dusting job.
“The Ghostly Creep from the Deep” (11/25/72) – The gang and the Harlem Globetrotters encounter a ship populated by ghost pirates.
“The Haunted Horseman of Hagglethorn Hall” (12/1/72) – A phantom knight seeks to keep Davy Jones from taking over Hagglethorn Hall, a fortress he’s inherited.
“The Phantom of the Country Music Hall” (12/8/72) – The gang goes to a Jerry Reed concert only to discover the singer is missing.
“The Caped Crusader Caper” (12/15/72) – The Joker and Penguin kidnap Professor Flaky, reuniting the gang with Batman and Robin.
“The Lochness Mess” (12/22/72) – The Harlem Globetrotters visit Shaggy’s uncle’s house only to encounter colonial ghosts and a sea monster.
“The Mystery of the Haunted Island” (9/8/73) – The gang and the Harlem Globetrotters end up on a haunted island where they meet three hooded ghosts.
“The Haunted Showboat” (9/15/73) – Ghosts seek to sink the showboat The Dixie Queen, where the gang has ended up with Josie and the Pussycats.
“Mystery in Persia” (9/22/73) – Jeannie recruits the gang to stop Jadal the Evil Djinn from preventing a young prince from becoming sultan.
“The Spirit Spooked Sports Show” (9/29/73) – The ghost of an athlete haunts Velma’s alma mater where Tim Conway is a coach.
“The Exterminator” (10/6/73) – Don Adams is hired to exterminate the house of horror actor Lorne Chumley, but he and the gang end up encountering monsters at every turn.
“The Weird Winds of Winona” (10/13/73) – A town’s population is mysteriously declining, and it’s up to the gang and the Speed Buggy crew to figure out why.
“The Haunted Candy Factory” (10/20/73) – The gang helps Cass Elliot try to find out why her candy factory is haunted.
“The Haunted Carnival” (10/27/73) – A ghostly strongman haunts the carnival run by Dick Van Dyke.
Originally posted in 2014. Updated in 2020.