A to Z Challenge: Fictional Favorites, Day 22

V is for — Velma Dinkley, from the Scooby Doo cartoons

When I was growing up, I loved Saturday morning Scooby Doo. The original series, Scooby Doo, Where Are You?, ran from 1969 to 1970. Mystery solvers, Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy, and their Great Dane, Scooby Doo, traveled to various places in their psychedelically-painted van, the Mystery Machine. Wherever they went, strange things happened, and Fred would invariably say, “Looks like we’ve got another mystery on our hands.” Or words to that effect. Then the gang would set about gathering clues and solving the mystery.

Velma was the smartest of the group, always figuring out whodunit by the end of the show. “Jinkies!” — her catchphrase — prefaced many a startling discovery or sudden “monster” appearance that sent everyone scrambling. Her one Achilles’ heel was her glasses, which she was forever losing at the most inopportune moment, usually when she was about to run into the ghost or whatever villainous creature they were investigating at the time. And as anyone who has ever watched Scooby Doo knows, she can’t see a thing without her glasses!

The Scooby Doo show went through several incarnations over the years, including animated movies and live-action feature films. I haven’t seen any of the live-action films because I just don’t think they can compare to the cartoons I loved so much. My favorite animated Scooby Doo series are the original Scooby Doo, Where Are You?, the New Scooby Doo Movies with celebrity guest stars (1972-1974), and What’s New, Scooby Doo? (2005-2006).

One of the funniest episodes is A Terrifying Round with a Menacing Metallic Clown, from season three of What’s New, Scooby Doo?. Velma, who is terrified of clowns, swaps roles with the cowardly Shaggy, who wants the mystery solved so he can continue his mini-golf tournament and win the championship. He boldly analyzes the clues and takes on the monstrous clown, while Velma cowers and runs. Other favorites include, from the New Scooby Doo Movies, Episode #15: The Caped Crusader Caper with Batman and Robin and the gang helping a hilariously stuttering professor, and Episode #17: The Mystery of Haunted Island with the Globetrotters.

Velma

Velma

Fred, Velma, Scooby Doo, Shaggy, and Daphne

Fred, Velma, Scooby Doo, Shaggy, and Daphne

14 thoughts on “A to Z Challenge: Fictional Favorites, Day 22

  1. I’ve only seen the original Scooby Doo. Velma is cool and smart. Except when she drops her glasses, then all reason seems to disappear with them. This was one of my favorite cartoons growing up. This is like a nice trip in Mister Peabody’s Wayback Machine.

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  2. Velma and the gang are a lot of fun. There’s a lot of Scooby books out right now for young readers. In some of them, there is never an actual villain – it always turns out that Shaggy and Scooby are afraid of something that has a mundane explanation (and they end up looking silly). This drives me crazy. The whole point of Scooby Doo is to solve real mysteries, and frankly I think kids can handle that. Luckily, there’s still a lot of books out there that are like the old show. There’s also a newer show out called Mystery Incorporated that I rather like. It has a very different style than the original, but it still works.

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    • We’ve seen some of the Mystery, Inc., shows. They’re a lot creepier, and they have a running theme which is interesting. My only complaint is that Fred seems to get less and less intelligent with each new incarnation of the show. And I’d prefer they ditch all the angst about relationships and stick to solving mysteries.

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  3. Velma is a cool character. But when she’s looking for her glasses, she always seems to be looking up at the sky instead of the ground. Always seemed odd. Like she didn’t really want to find them.

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  4. I always identified with Velma most of the mystery machine gang, because she seemed to always be the logical thinker and very practical. Except of course, whenever she lost her glasses!

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    • Yes, she was amazing at putting all the clues together. If I had been one of the gang, I would have bought her one of those straps that people who play sports wear to keep their glasses from falling off. But then, Velma wouldn’t be Velma if she didn’t lose her glasses at least once per episode. 🙂

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  5. Darn, I clearly missed something very special by not seeing any Scooby Doo series. The combo of mysteries, a girl who can’t see anything without glasses, and the name Velma all ring close to my heart. I cannot remember whether it was a TV series, movie or musical where there were two “floozy” female characters, and one of them in her little girly high-pitched voice would say, “I and Velma ain’t dumb.” That was the first I heard the name Velma.

    Now I’m gonna have to find me some Scooby Doo reruns. Right after I find my glasses. 🙂

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