My daughter is turning 3 in nine days.  Her favorite cartoons are Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, and Super Why.  She has seen most of the old Disney movies.  Her favorite right now is Peter Pan.  That’s fine by me, because it’s my favorite Disney movie ever.  But she likes Cinderella, and Snow White.  What little girl doesn’t?

I am a huge fan of cartoons.  Well, let me rephrase that.  I am a huge fan of cartoons from when I was growing up, and even into my young adulthood.  I don’t watch cartoons any longer because, well, I think they suck.  I watch cartoons that are designed for me, like Family Guy, Archer, Axe Cop, and even still watch The Simpsons.  But cartoons for children I don’t find enjoyable.  The most recent cartoon that I liked was probably Invader Zim, and even that was more designed for me than young kids.

Recently, I have started showing her cartoons that I loved that I have on DVD like Ducktales, The Gummi Bears and A Pup Named Scooby-Doo.  Today, she watched her first real Scooby-Doo movie.  It was the newest one, Scooby-Doo! Stage Fright!  It’s alright.  It has Matthew Lillard (man crush alert), who continues to voice Shaggy.  She fell in love.

Scooby-Doo is very important to me.  Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?  is my second favorite cartoon of all time behind The Simpsons.  I love The New Scooby-Doo Movies, Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo (even though I feel that might be sacrilegious), and yes, The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo.  Watching today though, I feel like it’s lost something.  And I don’t know what it is.

I have seen the live action movies.  Both the theatrical releases and the direct-to-video prequel.  I didn’t see the direct-to-video…sequel to…the prequel that was still a prequel to the original…I think.  I don’t know, I don’t care about that.  It always has been and always will be about the animated series.

Every now and then, on Cartoon Network I will stop and watch a Mystery Incorporated episode.  Maybe I am just too old.  I’ve decided that I am now to the age where I think everything now is much worse than it was when I was young.  And I’m only 34.  But apparently I’m 34 going on 74.  Music is terrible, cartoons are terrible… get off my damn lawn you rotten kids!!

There have been 11 different series with Scooby and the gang.  All telling the same story.  Some with real supernatural beings, some with people in crazy get ups who would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for those meddling kids and their dog.  The plot is the same!  So why is it so much worse now than it was in the first incarnation?

Mystery Inc. just ended their series earlier this year.  It’s only a matter of time until Warner Brothers comes up with another Scooby-Doo series.  Maybe they should reboot the movies storyline and have guest stars come onto the show.  That was cool.  When they fought bad guys with Adam West and Burt Ward as Batman and Robin, or Sonny and Cher, even the Harlem Globetrotters made an appearance.  Now this was all before my time, so I don’t know how culturally influential this all was, but these were big stars!  I guess as long as there are children in America, there will be a need for Scooby-Doo and they will love it no matter what.  Even if the best version of the series happened over 40 years ago.

As a fan of the show, I love that new fans are made everyday.  I love that I can turn on the TV and find an episode basically whenever I want.  I also love that I can pop in a DVD and watch an original episode if I want really good Scooby.  I just want to know what happened between Where Are You, and Mystery Inc that changed the series.  Is it dumbed down?  Is it made for a younger audience?  What am I missing?!?!  I really shouldn’t complain.  Any Scooby is good Scooby as far as I am concerned.  Far too many of my favorite shows and cartoons have disappeared from the face of the earth (Two Guys and a Girl, Fantastic Max), so as long as there is Scooby-Doo in the world, and I can teach my daughters the importance of the Doo, I can live happy.



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