Scooby-Doo and Blue Falcon? I’m so there!
I loved both as a kid, so I couldn’t resist the latest direct-to-video “Scooby-Doo! Mask of the Blue Falcon,” which came out last week. Most of these are fairly mediocre and, truth be told, this one isn’t much different. But it’s so imbued with nostalgia, adult fans can still get a kick out of it, especially the opening credits. And little Scooby fans will still enjoy it.
Scooby and the gang head to the Mega Mondo Pop Cartoon-a-Con in San de Pedro, Calif., to geek out. Shaggy and Scooby have some minor Blue Falcon and Dynomutt cosplay, and it just so happens a dark, edgy, new BF movie is premiering at the show. They get caught up in a mystery, of course, when a villain from the vintage TV series appears and causes trouble.
Is it Owen Garrison (a nod to original voice actor Gary Owens), the actor who originally played Blue Falcon and is bitter about being shut out of the character he made famous? Maybe it’s the new film’s gonzo director, anxious for publicity, or the film’s actor, scared about being typecast and wanting the movie to fail. It could even be an exhibitor friend of Shaggy’s who’s seen acting strangely.
The movie is filled with background references to vintage Hanna-Barbera, including “Super Friends,” “Space Ghost,” “Herculoids,” “Teen Force,” “Frankenstein, Jr. and the Impossibles” (improper punctuation theirs, not mine) and more. More characters from “Dynomutt Dog Wonder” than just the villainous Mr. Hyde show up, too. There’s even a nice tip of the hat to Shel Dorf, one of the main founders of San Diego Comic Con (and its precursor here, Detroit Triple Fan Fair).
It’s a Scooby-Doo film, so there’s a certain amount of fun built in from the start. Matthew Lillard has done a terrific job taking over the voice of Shaggy, and the two of them get into their classic hijinks. (There’s one point where they missed a perfect opportunity to slip in a Matter-Eater Lad reference, but I’ll let it slide.)
It was a bit surprising to see Scooby steal a doughnut from a couple of convention-goers, but otherwise, this is a pretty by-the-numbers Scooby-Doo adventure, complete with the “meddling kids” line at the end.
And if anyone wants the domain scooptube.com, used in the movie as a YouTube stand-in, it was available for sale as of this writing.
Scooby-Doo, where are you? Still in my living room — and that’s a good thing.