|First appearance||"What a Night for a Knight" (Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!)|
|Created by||Joe Ruby, Ken Spears and Iwao Takamoto|
Scooby Doo  is the eponymous character and protagonist of the animated television franchise of the same name created in 1969 by the American animation company Hanna-Barbera. Scooby-Doo is a male Great Dane and lifelong companion of amateur detective Shaggy Rogers, with whom he shares many personality traits. Named after a nonsense vocal line in Frank Sinatra's hit song "Strangers in the Night", he features a mix of both canine and human behaviors (reminiscent of other funny animals in the Golden age of American animation), treated by his friends more or less as an equal while speaking in a famous (and much parodied) speech impediment. His catchphrase is "Scooby-Dooby-Doo!"
Writers Joe Ruby and Ken Spears created the original Scooby-Doo series, Scooby-Doo, Where are You!, for Hanna-Barbera for CBS's 1969-70 Saturday morning cartoon schedule. Originally titled Mysteries Five, the dog who later became Scooby was originally more of a sidekick character - a bongo-playing dog named "Too Much" whose breed varied between Great Dane and sheepdog between treatments. By the time the show was pitched to the network as Who's S-S-Scared? in early 1969, Too Much was solidified as a cowardly Great Dane. Both the dog and the series would be renamed Scooby-Doo by Fred Silverman, CBS's head of daytime programming, between its unsuccessful first pitch and a second pitch which earned the show a green light. Silverman came up with the name from the syllables "doo-be-doo-be-doo" in Frank Sinatra's hit song "Strangers in the Night".
Taking notes from a Hanna-Barbera colleague was also a breeder of Great Danes, Production designer Iwao Takamoto designed the Scooby-Doo character with a sloping chin, spots, a long tail, a sloped back, and bow legs - all traits in direct opposition to those of a prize-winning purebread Great Dane. In defining the personality of the dog, Ruby and Spears looked for inspiration to the characters played by Bob Hope in his horror-comedies - a coward who shows traits of bravery when his friends are in danger. Veteran H-B voice artist Don Messick was the original voice of Scooby and spent decades working on the character.
Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! premiered on CBS on September 13, 1969 at 10:30 a.m. EST and ran for two seasons, for a total of 25 episodes. Its final first-run episode aired on October 31, 1970.
In most incarnations of the series, Scooby is regarded as a unique Great Dane dog who is able to speak in broken English, and usually puts the letter "R" in front of words and noises made. Other incarnations, such as A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, present talking dogs as quite common. In recent years (most notably in Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated), Scooby is able to speak in complete sentences and has more dialogue, partially retaining his speech impediment.
Different iterations of the character have been developed and expanded in the various series featuring the characters, many of them contradicting, such as the original series and recent live-action movies where Shaggy and Scooby first meet as older teenagers for the first time, contradicting the A Pup Named Scooby-Doo animated series where they know each other from almost infancy.
In all versions of the character, Scooby and Shaggy share several personality traits, mostly being cowardly and perpetually hungry. But their friends (Velma, Daphne and Fred) encourage them to go after the costumed villains, usually with "Scooby Snacks", a biscuit-like dog treat or cookie snack (usually shaped like a bone or, in later versions of the cartoons, Scooby's dog tag), though Scooby's inherent loyalty and courage does often force him to take a more heroic stance. Scooby is also extremely ticklish and this is seen in many of the television shows and movies.
Scooby has a speech impediment and tends to pronounce most words as if they begin with an "R", though most characters are able to understand him perfectly. In most iterations, he keeps his sentences relatively short, usually using charades for anything longer than three or four words. His catchphrase, usually howled at the end of every production, is "Scooby-Dooby-Doo!" or "Rooby-Rooby-Roo". Scooby was voiced by Don Messick through Arabian Nights in 1994, after which point Messick quit smoking; quitting smoking changed his voice and prevented him from achieving the same raspy vocal effect (despite Messick's efforts, he suffered a career-ending stroke in 1996 and died in 1997, before any further Scooby-Doo productions were made). Messick is also known for providing the voice of the dogs Astro on The Jetsons and Muttley (who snickered). The characteristic voices of Scooby and Astro are so similar that Astro's signature phrase, "Ruh-roh!", is popularly and improperly attributed to Scooby (as in "Ruh-roh, Raggy!").
Appearance and anatomy
Scooby is brown from head to toe with several distinctive black spots on his upper body and doesn't seem to have a melanistic mask. He is generally a quadruped, but displays bipedal 'human' characteristics occasionally. Scooby also has opposable thumbs and can use his front paws like hands. He has a black nose and wears an off-yellow, diamond-shaped-tagged blue collar with an "SD" (his initials) and has four toes on each foot. Unlike other dogs, Scooby only has one pad on the sole of each of his feet (so that it was easier to draw in the Scooby-Doo Annuals).
Scooby has a fully prehensile tail he can use to swing from or press buttons. Both his head and tail are malleable and useful as a communication aid or creating a distraction.
Creator Iwao Takamoto later explained that before he designed the character, he first spoke to a Great Dane breeder, who described to him the desirable characteristics of a pedigree dog. Takamoto then drew Scooby as the opposite of this. He said "I decided to go the opposite [way] and gave him a hump back, bowed legs, small chin and such. Even his color is wrong."
According to the official magazine that accompanied the 2002 movie, Scooby is seven years old.
Don Messick originated the character's voice patterns, and provided Scooby-Doo's voice in every Scooby-Doo production from 1969 until his retirement from the character in 1996. The legendary Frank Welker (also the voice of Fred) voiced Scooby-Doo in a 1996 episode of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch and from 2002 he took over beginning with What's New, Scooby-Doo? and other spin-offs including the live-action prequels Scooby-Doo! The Mystery Begins and Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster. Voice actor Hadley Kay voiced him once, in a 1997 episode of Johnny Bravo. Scott Innes (also the then-voice of Shaggy) voiced Scooby-Doo in four late 1990s/early 2000s direct-to-video films. Neil Fanning provided the voice of the computer-generated Scooby-Doo in the first two Warner Bros. live-action feature films. Luke Youngblood is the stand in for the computer-generated Scooby-Doo in the live-action Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster while Frank Welker voices him. Dave Coulier and Seth Green have both voiced him in Robot Chicken.
- Don Messick (1969–1994)
- Frank Welker (2002–present plus Scooby-Doo! The Mystery Begins and Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster)
- Hadley Kay (1997; Johnny Bravo)
- Scott Innes (1998–2001)
- Neil Fanning (2002 and 2004 live-action films)
Voiced by in other shows and languages:
- Dave Coulier (2005; Robot Chicken)
- Seth Green (2007; Robot Chicken)
- In Brazil, the actor Orlando Drummond has been the voice of Scooby-Doo for 35 years, getting into Guinness World Records as the longest serving voice actor for one character. As of 2012, Drummond still is the only voice for Scooby-Doo in the country.
- In Romania, Scooby-Doo is voiced by Florian Silaghi.
- In Albania, Scooby-Doo has been voiced by Genci Fuga and Lorenc Kaja.
- In Denmark, Scooby-Doo is voiced by Lars Thiesgaard.
- In Japan, Scooby-Doo has been voiced by Kazuo Kumakura and Naomi Kusumi.
- In Hungary, Scooby-Doo was voiced by Attila Hanko, in the first two seasons of The Scooby-Doo Show, and is now voiced by Gabor Vass and Gabor Melis.
- In Sri Lanka, Scooby-Doo is voiced by Gaminda Priyaviraj.
- In Sweden, Scooby-Doo is voiced by Stefan Frelander.
- In Poland, Scooby-Doo is voiced by Ryszard Olesiński in most movies and by Wiktor Zborowski, Jacek Jarosz and Jan Kulczycki in '89 version of Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo.
Over the course of Scooby-Doo's various spin-offs, various relatives of Scooby were introduced:
- Scrappy-Doo: Scooby's young nephew (and son of Scooby's sister Ruby-Doo), Scrappy is the bravest of Scooby's relatives. Scrappy became a recurring character in the Scooby-Doo series beginning in 1979, and was noted for being quite headstrong and always wanting to face off in a fight with the various villains (unlike his uncle). He has one or two catch phrases, the one he uses the most is "Puppy Power!" Scooby and Shaggy were present at Scrappy's birth.
- Yabba-Doo: According to Scrappy and Yabba-Doo Yabba is Scooby's brother, a white dog owned by Deputy Dusty in the American Southwest. Unlike Scooby, Yabba is brave. Unlike Scooby's and Scrappy's, his typical custom catchphrase at the end is "Yippity-Yabbity-Doooo!!!" (and not "Yabba-Dabba-Doo!", presumably due to Fred Flintstone's usage of that phrase).
- Scooby-Dum: Scooby's cousin (according to Shaggy in "Headless Horseman of Halloween), a blue-grey dog. A Mortimer Snerd-esque dog who longed to be a detective. Was rather dimwitted (he would keep looking for clues even after the mystery was solved). His catch-phrase was also different than Scooby's and Scrappy's. Instead of "Scooby-Dooby-Dum" his typical custom catch-phrase is "Dum dum Dum DUM!", an intoning the opening four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, which he would do after someone said the word "clue".
- Scooby-Dee: Scooby's distant cousin, a white dog. Spoke with a Southern accent, and was an actress.
- Dooby-Doo: Scooby's cousin, a singer. He is one of Scooby's few relatives to have hair on his head. Only appeared in "The 'Dooby Dooby Doo' Ado".
- Momsy and Dada Doo: Scooby's parents. His mother is the only one who calls him by his full name, "Scoobert".
- Whoopsy-Doo: Scooby's cousin, a clown. Owned by Shaggy (Norville)'s uncle, Gaggy Rogers.
- Ruby-Doo: Scooby's sister, and mother of Scrappy-Doo.
- Skippy-Doo: Scooby's brother. Highly intelligent; he wears glasses.
- Howdy-Doo: Scooby's brother. Enjoyed reading supermarket tabloid newspapers. He appears to become a redhead.
- Horton-Doo: Scooby's uncle. Interested in monsters and science.
- Dixie-Doo: Scooby's cousin and the pet of Betty Lou, Shaggy's Southern cousin.
- Grandad Scooby: Scooby's grandfather.
- Great-Grandpa Scooby: Scooby's great-grandfather.
- Yankee-Doodle-Doo: Scooby's ancestor. He was owned by McBaggy Rogers. He also appears to be a pilgrim. Little is known about him.
- Spooky-Doo: Scooby's uncle. He was the former owner of Doo Manor.
- Amber: In Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders, Shaggy and Scooby are abducted by the "aliens" and abandoned in the desert. There they meet a wild life photographer, Crystal and her dog Amber. Scooby was heartbroken when it is revealed that Amber and Crystal are actually aliens from another planet and must go home, though he and Shaggy quickly forget about them at the film's end when they found out there was one more Scooby Snack box left. Amber and Crystal did seem to have actual feelings for Shaggy and Scooby but do not pursue them due to 'long distance relationships never working out'. Amber's disguised form is that of a Golden Retriever wearing a red bandana while her true form is a large, blue reptilian creature with a beak-like mouth. Like Scooby, she is capable of speech but only shows so at the end of the movie and unlike Scooby, she speaks like a normal human.
- Scooby-Dee: In the The Scooby-Doo Show episode "The Chiller Diller Movie Thriller", Scooby and his cousin Scooby-Dum compete for the affections of canine movie star Scooby-Dee, who is also their cousin.
- Chiquita: In Scooby-Doo and the Monster of Mexico, Scooby meets up with Chiquita, Alejo's son's pet Chihuahua, when the gang arrives at Alejo's family hotel.
- Sandy Duncan: In The New Scooby-Doo Movies episode: Sandy Duncan's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Scooby fell for Sandy Duncan at a studio.
- Sled dog: In The Scooby Doo Show episode, A Scary Night With a Snow Beast Fright, Scooby falls in love with a sled dog. At the end, she kisses him.
- Chrissie: Mr. B's prize dog, and mother of the Secret Six (Maize, Flax, Jingle, Knox, 14-Carat, and Bling-Bling) appeared in the What's New, Scooby-Doo episode "Homeward Hound".
- Roxanne: An old girlfriend that Scooby meets again in What's New episode, A Scooby-Doo Valentine. In the end, she leaves Scooby for singer J.C. Chasez's pet bulldog Reecho.
- Nova: In the Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated episode "The Hodag of Horror", Scooby falls in love with Fred's parents' female dog Nova, a cocker spaniel. In the second season, she falls from a plane and goes into a coma, where she is then possessed by the Anunnaki, who warns Scooby of Nibiru and advises him on what to do.
Appearances in other media
- Scooby-Doo and Shaggy made a non-speaking cameo in Teen Titans Go! episode "I See You" when Cyborg and Beast Boy were rapping.
- Scooby-Doo appeared twice in Cartoon Network's The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy as a character who is described as being on the "wrong show" along with the other principal members of the Mystery Inc.
- Scooby has appeared in Johnny Bravo in the episodes "Bravo Dooby-Doo" and "'Twas The Night" during the first season voiced both times by Hadley Kay.
- In an episode of Yin Yang Yo! called "Slumber Party of Doom", Scooby and Shaggy make two cameos. The first being Shaggy complaining about Yin and Yang stealing their montages and Scooby saying, "It sucks!"
- Scooby-Doo and Shaggy made a cameo appearance in Looney Tunes: Back In Action complaining to Matthew Lillard (who played Shaggy) about his performance in the first live-action Scooby-Doo movie. They both threaten to come after Lillard if he ruins the sequel. Scooby-Doo states that he will give him a "Scooby snack" and begins growling viciously.
- Scooby-Doo appears as a guest in a 1996 video called Kids for Character.
- Scooby-Doo also appears in an episode of Drawn Together.
- Scooby-Doo was once impersonated by David Beckham in an animated Scooby-Doo promo from the United Kingdom.
- Scooby-Doo appears in the Robot Chicken episode "Operation: Rich in Spirit" voiced by Dave Coulier (who previously imitated Scooby's voice in Full House). He is amongst Mystery Inc. members who end up killed by Jason Voorhees except Velma. Seth Green voices him in the episode "Ban on the Fun" when in the segment that parodies the Laff-A-Lympics in the style of the Munich massacre. This time, Scooby did not get killed.
- In an episode of Robotboy, when Robotboy and his 'mother' escape from police with a big speaker, a dog which looks like Scooby hangs on to the speaker and follows them home.
- In an episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, this alludes to The New Scooby-Doo Movies where Batman originally starred in. However, with some meddling from Bat-Mite, not only were the dynamic duo able to fight unlike in the original appearance, but he also removed Shaggy and Scooby's cowardice allowing them to, for the first time, fight the villains toe to toe.
- In the episode "Saturday Morning Fun Pit" (7ACV19), on the Futurama series, Bender is re-conceived as a parody of Scooby-Doo, they call him Bendee Boo.
Casey Kasem, the previous voice actor for Shaggy Rogers, said that Scooby is "the star of the show--the Shaquille O'Neal of the show." Kasem explained "People love animals more than they love people. Am I right or wrong? They give more love to their pets than they give to people. Scooby is vulnerable and lovable and not brave, and very much like the kids who watch. But like kids, he likes to think that he's brave."
- Joe Ruby
- Ken Spears
- Iwao Takamoto
- Don Messick
- William Hanna
- Joseph Barbera
- Astro (The Jetsons)
- List of fictional dogs
- Scooby-Doo's Snack Tracks: The Ultimate Collection (Compact disc liner notes). Rhino Records. p. 4. R2 75505.
- Shostak, Stu (05-02-2012). "Interview with Joe Ruby and Ken Spears". Stu's Show. Retrieved 03-18-2013.
- Ruby and Spears (2002).
- Scooby Doo : Scooby History Cinema.com
- (2006). Interview with Iwao Takamoto. Eerie Mystery of Scooby-Doo and Dynomutt's History [documentary featurette from The Scooby-Doo/Dynomut Hour: The Complete Series DVD bonus features]. New York, Los Angeles, CA: Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc. Excerpt: "The Great Dane was supposed to be the biggest dog around ... and there was a woman [at the studio] who actually bred and reared Great Danes. So, she came over, and spent a solid hour describing all of the positive things that makes a prize-winning Great Dane. And I selected about five things, I think, and went in the opposite direction. For instance, a good, strong straight back, so I sloped his back. A strong chin, so I under-swung his chin ... and I think straight hind legs she mentioned. So I bowed them ..."
- Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!: The Complete 1st and 2nd Seasons: "Scooby-Doo Facts" interior
- "Scooby-Doo creator dies aged 81". BBC. 2007-01-09. Retrieved 2009-11-25.
- Sigesmund, B.J. "The Inside Dope." Newsweek. June 14, 2002. Available at Lexis-Nexis.