That’s right, our favorite meddling kids and their dog just turned 50!
If you are like me, then the first thing you did as a kid on a Saturday morning was to jump out of bed and turn on Saturday Morning Cartoons. I probably owe some of my creativity to that weekend ritual.
On September 13, 1969… Scooby-Doo and the gang took their first ride in the Mystery Machine and set out on whacky adventures. Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? written by Joe Ruby and Ken Spears, quickly became a success. The show featured four teenagers: Fred Jones, Daphne Blake, Velma Dinkley and Norville “Shaggy” Rogers. The original series aired on CBS from 1969 to 1976 and then moved to ABC. Since then there have several iterations of the show, but solving mysteries has remained the heart of it all.
Surprisingly, Scooby-Doo was created because of parent-run activist groups such as Action for Children’s Television. At the time, groups of this nature were protesting the violent nature of some of the shows such as Space Ghost and the Herculoids. In order to appease these groups, CBS’s Fred Silverman asked William Hanna and Joseph Barbera to work on a new show.
Using The Archies and The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis; Ruby and Spears along with a character artist by the name of Iwao Takamoto began to work on what would ultimately become one of the most cherished cartoon shows of all time.
Diving deeper into the history of Scooby-Doo and the gang, one will discover that there has been one constant pretty much throughout the gang’s history. That one thing is the voice of Fred. Frank Welker has provided the voice for Fred Jones since the beginning, with the exception of A Pup Named Scooby-Doo and the live-action films. Welker also provides the current voice of Scooby himself. Originally Welker wanted to play Shaggy, but Barbera pushed him towards Fred. As we all know, Casey Kasem ended up providing the voice of Shaggy. In 2020, Zac Efron will be taking over the mantle as Fred in a new animated film.
The world of Scooby-Doo, has been interesting to say the least. Even DC Comics hopped on board with the reimagination of Scooby-Doo and company in the comic Scooby Apocolypse. Printed from May 2016 to April 2019, the comic was conceived by DC Comics co-publisher and artist Jim Lee. The idea was to invision Hanna Barbera classics in a unique and fun way… maybe more so in a unique way.
On June 27th of this year, Boomerang launched Scooby-Doo and Guess Who? on their streaming service. The new show will bring back teamups with celebrities. Although having viewed the list of celebrities taking part, I have my doubts on how successful this will be. But who wouldn’t want to watch the gang team up with Wonder Woman or Ricky Gervais?
The development and marketing of Scooby-Doo over the years has been spot on. For a cartoon to have an audience for this long is quite amazing. Among the 25 to 36 age group, Hanna-Barbera is considered one of the most nostalgic brands. Because of this Scooby-Doo has high potential when it comes to Nostalgia Marketing.
Needless to say, Scooby Doo will continue for future generations.
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