Mystery Incorporated is definitely not your father’s Scooby Doo. I can say this definitively because in this case, I am the father. A few nights ago, while on a bathroom break from watching a French art house movie, I noticed my youngest son Aaron watching Mystery Incorporated. It took about ten more minutes of Cocteau for me to realize, what the heck am I doing watching this when I could be watching Scoobies with Aaron?
Boy, was I in for a surprise. As I said, this is not your father’s Scooby Doo. Check out this quote from the Wiki:
“The series pays extensive homage to the horror genre, drawing on many works from film, television and literature in both parodic and serious ways, from horror movie classics like A Nightmare on Elm Street, modern films such as Saw, television series Twin Peaks, and the works of H. P. Lovecraft.”
Saw?!? H.P. Lovecraft?!? Really??? You’re kidding, right? Turns out they’re not. Personally, I’m torn on this. On one hand, I don’t need darkness, and angst, and complicated interpersonal relationships, and alternative realities in my Scooby Doo for Pete’s sake. On the other hand, it’s nice to see someone do something unique with the franchise. As the Wiki points out, it’s the first time an ongoing story arc has been used. Plus, I like the idea of coming full circle back to what is essentially the starting point of the 1969 series, with the gang setting off on a road trip to look for mysteries and burger joints in the classic Mystery Machine. They just took it a bit way too far.