The Dark Secrets of Scooby Doo Revealed

Netflix on Wii is just unbelievable.  Seriously.  There’s no other word for it.  It’s like we’re living in the future and don’t even know it.  Right now, I’m finishing up Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, and after this, who knows?  The world is at my fingertips, and it’s just something we take for granted.

By the by, Batman Beyond; Return of the Joker is a definitive Batman story as far as I’m concerned.  I think I prefer the edited version.  Not because of the blood in the darker version, which is slight and tasteful.  But because of the way the Joker dies.  I much prefer the accidental and stupid death by his own hand.  It just fits the character to a T.  A clueless, bumbler with delusions of grandeur, killed by his own carelessness.  The perfect end to a chronic failure who strived to embody a concept of chaos.

But let’s put these thoughts aside for now and talk about something really important:

Scooby Doo.

Are you ready to get your mind blown?  Good.  Because I am about to reveal unto you secrets that mere mortals were never meant to know.  FYI: The following secrets disregard pretty much 90 percent of Scooby Doo animated archives.  While The Thirteen Ghosts of Scooby Doo is a great cartoon, it really isn’t canon as far as yours truly is concerned.  No, for this post, we’ll be focusing on the traditional Scooby Doo mythos.  And, yes, I am aware I just used the term “mythos” for Scooby Doo.  I’m a novelologist.  I can get away with it.

Have you ever watched Scooby Doo?  I mean, really watched it?  If you have, then you’ve probably been as confused as I have been.

Usually a standard Scooby Doo episode starts with the gang driving somewhere.  And a monster appears, though not usually where anyone can see it.  Instead, it lurks in the shadows, growling and hissing and generally acting monster-iffic.

And this is the first stumbling block we have to logic in the Scooby Doo universe.  Why exactly would anyone do this?  Oh, sure, if they actually were monsters, it would make sense.  But these aren’t monsters.  These are people in monster costumes.  Yet here they are, prowling around in the dark, acting like monsters when there’s no one around to see them.  Certainly, it’s possible that one or two are method actors and really into their role, but that just can’t be true for all of them.

And speaking of staying in character, the monsters (or rather, people in monster costumes) rarely, if ever, break character.  The mystery gang never stumbles upon the monster acting remotely like the person underneath the mask.  And even when Scooby Doo and Shaggy pull their “Let’s pretend we’re barbers” schtick, the monster goes along with the act for at least a little while before realizing, “Hey, I’m supposed to be a monster!”  But, even when the monster is being tricked, he doesn’t act like a human, which he is.

But perhaps the biggest mystery to Scooby Doo is Scooby Doo himself.  Why does this dog talk?  Nobody remarks on this in the show, but clearly, talking dogs are a rarity.  In fact, as far as I can tell, the only talking dogs in the Scooby mythos are the Scooby clan themselves.  One can’t help but wonder why?  Well, okay, maybe one can help but wonder, but not me.

Finally, why do the mystery gang keep running across monsters in the first place?  Surely, this can’t be mere coincidence.  It’s as if fate itself is drawing our intrepid gang of teens into these strange adventures.  And indeed it is, as we shall soon see.

The secrets of Scooby Doo begin long before the show starts, perhaps long before the Scooby clan was even born.  My theory is that, at some point in the past, a person performed a spell that brought dark magic to the earth.  This magic manifested in the form of cursed monster costumes.

That’s right.  Cursed monster costumes.

Really, it’s the only sensible explanation.  How else can you explain costumes that are so realistic that they can simulate anything ranging from an evil bug from the future, a 10,000 volt ghost, or a tar monster?  Think about this for a moment.  How can anyone take a wetsuit and a car battery and make themselves into an electric monster?  Or a tar beast?  I don’t care how creative you are, that crap just don’t fly.  Not without some magic on your side.

These costumes were spread around the earth by sinister forces.  And every so often, a person of questionable moral fiber discovers them.  The costumes use their powers to coerce these vulnerable souls.  And, if the soul is vulnerable enough, the idea of running around in a monster costume to frighten people makes perfect sense, even though you’d have to be pretty dumb to think that acting like a monster would scare people away.  Hasn’t worked for Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster yet, has it?

So compelled by dark forces, the person puts on the costume and actually becomes a monster.  This is why they never break character, why they enjoy lurking in darkened woods, and why they can manifest surprising powers such as super strength.  It’s also why something as ridiculous as a projection on a fog bank could fool anyone.  It’s magic that makes it work.

Over time the costume becomes more controlling.  Its eventual goal is to transform the person from a costume into a genuine monster.  Often, by the time Scooby and the gang are involved, this is dangerously close to happening.  This is why, even when caught, the “monsters” will rarely admit defeat.  It’s only after their mask has been removed and their humanity exposed that the spell is broken and they become human once again.

But, here’s the real twist.  What does any of this have to do with Scooby Doo, you might ask.  Well, you’ve come this far, so I assume you’re interested.

The entire Doo family is cursed.  I don’t know why.  I don’t know if they had anything to do with the magic that unleashed the costumes or if they just happened to make some powerful enemies.  Either way, they were cursed into dogs until all the costumes are recovered.  On the bright side, they do become more human as the costumes are found.  This is evident with the sliding scale of humanity exhibited by the Doo family.

Scooby Dum is less bright than Scooby Doo.  This can only mean that he’s perhaps a bit older than Scooby Doo, and so, he has more dog in his nature.  While both Scooby Dum and Scooby Doo can stand upright in a pinch, both prefer all fours and have obvious speech impediments.  Meanwhile, Scrappy Doo is always bipedal and speaks perfectly.  One can assume that if the gang continues to gather more costumes that within a few more generations, the Doo clan will once again be completely human.

(And, yes, I’m aware that many people don’t like Scrappy, but for purposes of this discussion, his contribution to the Lore of Doo is essential to our understanding.  So deal with it.)

This is why Scooby and the gang are constantly running into monsters, by the way.  They are drawn to these suits by the very forces of good and evil.  It’s an epic struggle indeed.

As for Shaggy, Velma, Fred, and Daphne, I haven’t quite figured out their place in the battle.  Perhaps they are merely along for the ride, thrill seekers.  Or maybe they’re genuinely good people out to stop the forces of darkness.  Or perhaps there is a more sinister purpose at work, a truly terrifying secret that we dare not explore at this stage.

I’m looking at your Fred and Daphne.

But that’s for another time.

Fighting the good fight, Writing the good write,


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  1. Rippley
    Posted June 11, 2010 at 1:59 am | Permalink

    Scrappy, Ruby-doo, and Scooby-Dum are all talking dogs on Scooby Doo, buddy. The men who dressed up as monsters have a lot at stake, moneywise, and so are trying to protect their fortune. What will men do in the name of greed? They’ll dress up as monsters, and impress upon people that they are in fact monsters, so as protect the fortune. Seriously, did you not watch the Enron trial?

    • A. Lee Martinez
      Posted June 11, 2010 at 2:40 am | Permalink

      I don’t know if any of the Enron guys dressed up as monsters. It’s a fairly unorthodox strategy and one that is proven not to work over and over again in the Scooby Doo universe. Yet people keep trying it. This seems like more proof to me that the monster costume wearers are victims of a terrible compulsion rather than their own free will.

  2. Rippley
    Posted June 11, 2010 at 2:13 am | Permalink

    Dismiss what I said above. Of course you know about the Doo family. You mentioned Scooby-Dum. Ok, I’m beyond that now. What I want to know is how you define magic? What is magic, A Lee Martinez? What is magic and how is it that this magic seems more cognizant than the people it effects? Somehow magic has a destined plan? Pleas explain? Maybe I’ve been wrong about Batman all along. Or not.

  3. Doug Johnson
    Posted June 11, 2010 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Two comments…Loch Ness, Big Foot and lesser regional monsters (goat man of Corpus Christi, for instance) are just Scooby adventures waiting to happen. They can’t be everywhere. That van only moves so fast. Each adventure takes time.

    As for Shaggy, Velma, Fred and Daphne, they were saved by the early Scoobys (pre-Dum? Maybe by Dum working alone?). Less evil than some of those captured in later episodes, or maybe under the influence of the costume for a shorter period of time, they realize how close they came to losing their souls to the evil and so join alongside the Scoobys to find the evil and vanquish it.

    • Charmscale
      Posted June 13, 2010 at 3:29 am | Permalink

      Dum working alone is a scary thought.

  4. Posted June 11, 2010 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    I’ll see your “cursed Scooby Doo family” and raise you a “Velma is Wilma Flintstone’s karmic reincarnation”!

    -The Gneech

    • Montell
      Posted April 12, 2013 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      as in my opinium:
      Fred and Daphne are an item and they have sex while the mystery kids and co. are searching
      Velma is lesbian
      Scooby and shaggy are pot heads because of the Scooby snacks
      the Doo family is cursed
      shaggy keeps on eating but has very good metabolism and has low personal hygenie

  5. Posted June 12, 2010 at 12:45 am | Permalink

    So…in the new generation of Scooby Doo episodes, the suits finally turned people.

    Finally, something that makes sense. I’ve always struggled with the seeming contradictions in the old/new series mythos.

    Someday, you’ll straighten me out on Harry Potter too, right?

    • Amy
      Posted February 12, 2016 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

      why the heck does scooby doo talk we all know dogs can’t talk

  6. Jesse
    Posted June 14, 2010 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    I heard a theory that if you pay attention Scooby only ever talks to Shaggy which is because Shaggy is constantly stoned. They claim there were hints to this in the series but I never went back to confirm.

    • Alex Medley
      Posted May 30, 2015 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

      I just watched Scooby Doo and the Witches Ghost, and in the last five minutes Scooby talked directly to Velma twice.

  7. Posted June 14, 2010 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Ahh, I haven’t paid enough attention, obviously. My son (he’s 8) watches these over and over. I think it may have been therapeutic for him. He’s had a lot of fears, and at first I didn’t like him scaring himself with Scooby Doo’s scary adventures. But I let go, and after reading your post, I’m realizing that he’s learned that scary monsters may be bad guys, but they’re never really monsters. Maybe that’s helped him get over his fears. He’s doing much better lately.

    Now he’s moved on to the Pink Panther. We use Netflix instant too, and I think there are 126 episodes in the classic collection. I don’t like him watching this one, either. Pink Panther is smoking, and there are drunks in some of the episodes. (I enjoy Pink Panther myself much more than I liked Scooby Doo.) Do you have any good insights on PP?

  8. Posted June 14, 2010 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    [Crazy online editors, must be under some serious juju. I tried to say my son was 8, but the close paren has taken away my meaning and turned my aside into a sunglass wearing smiley.]

  9. Rippley
    Posted June 15, 2010 at 3:15 am | Permalink


    I’ve been following A. Lee Martinez for about four months. In this time, I’ve read numerous theories and opinions he has on topics such as movies, television shows, and comics. For each of these topics, Martinez has a consistent viewpoint. The viewpoint seems to be surrounded around the suspension of disbelief. I think the question on Martinez’s mind at all times is, “Could this happen in reality?” I am not sure why this question is relevant in Martinez’s mind, or if he has complex understanding of this question. In truth, I’m not sure if “Could this happen in reality?” is the right question.

    Martinez has an absolute standpoint on Batman. “Batman is magic,” Martinez claims. Why is Batman magic, you might ask? Because Batman/Bruce Wayne is better at overcoming obstacles than anyone could be. Batman is an expert at everything, and no one could be an expert at everything; thus Batman is magic. Also, Batman lives in a magic universe. The universe in which Batman and all the superheroes live is magic, basically, because superheroes exist in that universe and do not exist in our non-magical universe. Our universe does not have magic, but the superhero universe does. In the magical universe, magic creates objects not found in this universe (i.e. ray guns (actually do exist in this universe), time machines (paradoxical), inter-dimensional transport machines, and the like).

    Similarly, Scooby-doo is magic, according to Martinez, because 1) Scooby is a talking dog, 2) the antagonists “never breaks from their role as the monster,” 3) both protagonists and antagonists have the ability to use magical artifacts (not mentioned).

    As for movies, take your pick, he mentions that in the movie Kick-Ass “a little girl couldn’t beat up a room full of strong armed guys.”

    While Martinez’s theory of these depictions seems reasonable, it leaves his interlocutors with numerous unanswered questions. For instance, how does magic chose it’s magicians, does magic have a plan within the balance between the protagonal and antagonal forces, is this magic cognizant, and many, many more. (I am still working on more relevant questions as I learn more about “magic.”)

    Also Martinez’s theories are devoid of metaphorical interpretation. I’m sure that the creators of these fictional tales meant for these suspension of disbelief gimmicks to be interpreted in a metaphorical moral sense, rather than in an ab-literal sense. But despite the creators intentions (whatever they might have been) Martinez gives us a new perspective on the pop culture artifacts we know and “love.”

    Now, if only Martinez would explain how such a system works. What is magic?

    • Posted December 19, 2015 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

      Magic is a evil name for it. Biblically speaking it is the “Law of Faith”. Lucas would call it, “the Force”. Either way, the Creator of man-kind did say these kind of people would be more than conquerors, miracle performers, etc. There will also be those that do it for evil, under the power of the dark side. Choose your side and learn more about it from the leader of that side. I chose Jesus because He is God and apart of God’s Salvation plan for man-kind and He is the Light and no evil whatsoever. Haha… have fun with that!

  10. Charmscale
    Posted June 15, 2010 at 4:10 am | Permalink

    If you’d read A Nameless Witch a bit more carefully, you’d know. He actually goes into alot of detail, if you pay attention.
    By the way, your post got on my nerves a little bit. I’ll assume you never intended to irritate anyone, but, in the future, you might want to check to see if your post might sound mocking before posting it.

    • A. Lee Martinez
      Posted June 15, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      Don’t mind Rippley. He’s just trying to figure things out. It might come across as a little antagonistic sometimes, but I’m convinced he means well and is sincere.

  11. Rippley
    Posted June 15, 2010 at 4:13 pm | Permalink


    It’s much more complicated than understanding Martinez’s narrative. I want to understand Martinez. And if have to be an antagonist, if I must be cruel, I will. I want ANSWERS to question that are locked in Martinez’s mind.

    His craft isn’t that easy. I could teach you how write a 3D GTA-style computer game in C++ within a week. After a year, with the right software, you could build a worthwhile publishable game. But I can’t give you the blue prints, the creativity, for that game. I could teach you the fundamentals of philosophy or literary theory, and within a year you will have a deeper knowledge and understanding of life and literature. But I couldn’t possible show you you how to use these subject to make the world a better place to live, or bring folks deeper incite into literature. I could teach you a lot of things that will be useless to you, having learned them, if you are clueless about to use these tools to create.

    Right now, I am clueless. Does A Lee Martinez really have the answers? Maybe. I’m not sure he knows what he knows himself, if that makes sense. But I believe, based on evidence, that he is slowly telling us what he knows. So, I analyze and deconstruct (and reconstruct in my image) every simple piece of A. Lee Martinez. Too bad, if he doesn’t want this. Too bad if I piss him off. He usually doesn’t get too pissed off anyway. A Lee Martinez, as you know, is a great guy (and far too humble).

    Martinez is an accessible representative of a large, complex set of people, but he also is a good representative. Point out the highlights of nearly every genre, his books fit the criteria. Thus, in nagging Martinez relentlessly, I am slowly coming to an understanding of him and the large set of people he represents. You can’t find this information in a creative writing textbook. Creative writing textbooks will tell you that Martinez and people like Martinez eat a significant amount of bananas per day, jog, and are pretty much robotic powerhouses. Martinez confessed to me that he does not eat even a medium consumption of bananas per week–he does, however, drink an average amount of orange juice.

    So there you go. Judge me if you will, but I do not care. I’m on a mission.

  12. Charmscale
    Posted June 15, 2010 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

    So you’re trying to understand how the mind of a writer works? Good luck.
    Try looking into the works of Carl Jung. Don’t know if it will help or not, but it helped me improve my writing skills, and even if it doesn’t help, it’s interesting.
    Sorry if I was a bit rude.

  13. Posted June 15, 2010 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

    Rippley, you will not unlock the secrets of A. Lee Martinez.

    Grasshopper knows the way is guarded by lightning fists, unspeakable riddles and impenetrable darkness. You cannot pierce the mystique.

    Better to build your own mystique, shrouded with secrets and shadow.

  14. Rippley
    Posted June 16, 2010 at 12:26 am | Permalink


    One day, about six months ago, I read Stephen King’s ‘On Writing.’ King explains that he is going to tell you how he became a writer, how his story is unique–how all writers are unique, and pull their stories from the ether. Same crap every creative writing teacher tells their students, blah, blah, blah. Then King unloads his life story, and, at this point, I think to myself, “Really, Mr. King! Because it seems as though the things you do in life directly effect what you write about.” He writes about landing on a story, because he can’t afford stamps; so, he writes a story about a stamp counterfeiter. So, I’m led, by Mr. King, to believe that story ideas come from personal(?) vested(?) intrinsic(?) interests. Or perhaps, the stories spring from some sort of short term desire, such as “I can’t afford stamps, so what if I counterfeit them, write a story about counterfeiting stamps–cathartic-wise.”

    Skip to two months later. I’m writing an extensive literary analysis about the pop culture use of mythology, so I could graduate with an M.A in lit theory. I’m reading piss loads of sci-fi and fantasy authors, on of them being A. Lee Martinez. I google search Martinez and find his blog and numerous interviews and his twitter.

    Anyway, I read through all his content and thought, “Wow! Martinez is exactly the type of person who would write a story such as Monster or Divine Misfortune,” the two books I had read. I mean, clue #1) he reads comic books, clue #2) he actively participates in RPG’s, which usually have a mythical character base, clue #3) he reads books on mythic//crypto creatures, clue #4) he is very aware of pop culture artifacts–shit, he’s a straight Perez Hilton when it comes to generational pop culture.

    Somewhere in there is the key to the ether. His actions lead to an idea, which lead to a story. My hypothesis is that he grabs a handful of mythical characters, slaps television personality personalities onto those characters, and the plot itself comes from random conversations with friends. If so, I would like to know how he put all those ideas together. If not, well, I’ll move on to the next hypothesis. Eventually, systematically, I WILL uncover those keys. And then, I will be able to “build my own mystique,” which I will never shroud in secrets and shadow.

  15. Posted June 28, 2010 at 3:59 am | Permalink

    Awesome, I believe the cursed monster costume theory has a great deal of merit. I don’t trust the talking dog and the teenagers who aimlessly drive around with him until stopped by the latest monster mystery which always has the same solution. Someone is doing it for the money.

  16. L. G.
    Posted December 14, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Very interesting theory, to be honest. I find it amusing though, that so many people are trying to debunk the entire blog post. Why do they do that? What’s the point? We’re talking about a cartoon here, people. It doesn’t need to make sense, it doesn’t need to be over analyzed. And neither does this theory. It’s a good theory, and has some potential for something. No idea what, but it does. Either way, I like the idea that the monsters could actually be cursed.

    Though you also have to figure that this is the 70s(At least the older ones.) And the people behind all the scaring do have their own issues. What I don’t get is why do they get arrested? I mean.. granted they’re disturbing the peace, and scaring people away from finding things inside the house. Or the house itself. But -why- do they get arrested? How is that illegal?

    On the topic of it, how the HELL can someone make a semi-sentient robot capable of running an entire carnival? Also, don’t even get me started with the live action Cartoon Network movies. Those are just UTTER crap. Fred has brown hair in those. And NOONE pays attention to the fact that Scooby can talk.

    There’s so much wrong with the Scooby Doo franchise, that it would take -years- to even begin to actually explain the general reasons behind everything. Though that one theory that Scooby only ever talks to Shaggy is a good one, I’ll have to look into that one myself. Either way, with all of the movies, all of the plotholes, and the weird were-cat women in the first movie they ever made…There’s just too much to really look into. Like I said, it would take years to explain every single bit of Scooby Doo and the reasons for everything.

    Non-Canon, or Not. The movies are insanely borderline on the fact that ‘ghosts don’t exist’ as Velma seems to claim. She’s in denial because of her repressed sexuality as a lesbian, so she focuses on the scientific facts of everything to keep her mind off her secret crush on Daphne. Knowing full well she and Daphne will never have that relationship she’s always wanted, because of the fact that she’s banging both Fred and Shaggy…

    Okay.. that weirds me out entirely for even bringing that up. So I’m shutting up now. XD

  17. grimdemon
    Posted January 7, 2011 at 1:05 am | Permalink

    i just got my wii the netflix is nice you ever played zombies ate my neighbors on your wii?

    • A. Lee Martinez
      Posted January 7, 2011 at 2:41 am | Permalink

      No, I haven’t played Zombies Ate My Neighbors on my Wii, although I did play the heck out of it on my Super Nintendo. One of my favorite games ever.

      • grimdemon
        Posted January 7, 2011 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

        i love all the mix of the 1950s b movie icons in it
        ive read gil’s all fright diner and monster, and plan on reading In the Company of Ogres
        and The Automatic Detective, wish i could find more books like those got any ideas?
        something like the attack of the 50 feet woman or something with big bugs like the movie starship troopers.

        theres also ghoul patrol that comes after zombies ate my neighbors, and
        Herc’s Adventures thats made like the other 2 , zombie panic source is pretty fun on steam

  18. Revereche
    Posted July 3, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    Well now, that actually makes sense.

  19. thailand
    Posted March 13, 2012 at 7:25 am | Permalink


    We look for the benefit of not-expensive GUI designers. Please advice.

    We make apps for Android phone.

    Ann Chapmak

  20. Fantasia
    Posted April 26, 2012 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    I never really understood why people tried to give meaning to cartoons. They are, after all, cartoons!! Their purpose is one to amuse the viewer and according to their age target cartoonists will try their best to put themselves in their public shoes. Hence, storyline and drawing are done in a way that cartoonists know that will attract and entertain such viewers. If you see, a lot of cartoons,even movies, have talking animals for no special reason. For what I can understand (from my own memories and the children I babysitted) the idea of a talking animal, or an animal that can understand you, it’s very popular amongst kids. It’s something from the world of fantastic.
    A lot of cartoons also try to possess a moral spine, I think this is obvious on Scooby Doo when the purpose is to help people to get rid of these monsters and hence vanquishing evil. And I agree with a lot of people have said here about monsters/humans might be a way to show children that people can be bad.
    As for Fred, Daphne,Velma and Shaggy, I suppose they were all friends, probably bored out of their mind and just decided to do something fun.
    People are naturally curious, especially children, and I think the element of adventure and mistery on Scooby Doo is perfect to stir children’s curiosity.
    Please don’t dwell to much on the meaning of cartoons… or fantastic movies… after all if you read way back, it’s said that the purpose of cinema was make people be able to dream awake and to break their boring routine.
    Let us dream and see the impossible on TV or books or Cinema, since the reality can be ever so dull and monotome.

    • Kaleb
      Posted November 29, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      I agree. You’re trying to make sense out of nonsense–frankly, when I read this it seemed rather absurd. Is it too hard to believe that perhaps the villains in Scooby Doo are all so similar because that’s all the show requires? Scooby Doo has created this archetype of desperate criminals that happen to have an extraordinary knack for cosplaying, and there has never been any need to stray from this blueprint of villain. After all, the show is child oriented. It’s for kids. Too often I see people over-analyzing things that aren’t meant to have a meaning. This show definitely has a Edgar Allan Poe gothic detective style about it, though. Consider the bumbling cops helped out by the civilian[s], the [pseudo]supernatural culprits, the mystery-solution walk through at the end of each episode, and the general gothic atmosphere. Obviously, it’s not true Gothic, rather a mock Gothic–hence the humor–but the connections remain. Also, hippie-esque themes presented in the form of Shaggy and psychedelic colors are evident, but anything past that, aka speculation about magic suits (many of which are shown to be mechanical in nature, rather than Venom/Spiderman style “skins”) and cursed were-dogs is simply that: speculation. Some things aren’t meant to be understood, and some things simply have no depth below entertainment.

      • A. Lee Martinez
        Posted November 29, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for the comment.

        How should I reply? First of all, I think you’re entirely right. None of this “theory” is required to enjoy the show, and it is definitely me overthinking something. I have no doubt that your points are exactly true, that there was nothing more to Scooby Doo than a simple cartoon show wit a strange theme.

        That said, I think you’re misreading my intention with this piece. It wasn’t meant to deconstruct Scooby Doo or redefine it. It was just an exercise in alternative interpretation, a more “realistic” version of the show. Though it’s not really more realistic, so even that doesn’t count.

        In no way do I want to imply that understanding this thought experiment is required to enjoy Scooby Doo. And I’m not trying to make Scooby Doo better or improve upon it. It’s just a little bit of imagination, a fun diversion. I was never intending to “fix” the show, which obviously works fine as it is.

        And in no way was I attempting to create any kind of Scooby Doo canon.

        Just wanted to be clear on that.

        Still, there’s nothing wrong with thinking about stuff and overanalyzing it on occasion. It might be nothing more than a bit of imagination, but if someone can use a show or idea to explore their own thoughts, I’m all for it.

    • Rassoull
      Posted August 10, 2013 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

      I agree 100%! I believe it’s more of a attraction of imagination than actual reality concepts.

  21. Posted April 27, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Permalink
  22. Alan Jacks
    Posted September 7, 2012 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    Hoe many drugs are you on?!?!

  23. dfhdfjhdff
    Posted December 16, 2012 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    lmfao this is so stupid I’m sorry. You are reading WAY too far into it. it’s just a cartoon! all of your explanations for why this and why that are completely random and not grounded in any sort of evidence from the show. the doo family is cursed? lmao what in the show gave you that idea?
    you’re desperately searching for explanations when there /are no explanations/. it’s not meant to be that read in to

    • A. Lee Martinez
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for the comment.

      Okay, let’s go through this once more.

      This was just an exercise in overanalysis. It is certainly not intended to be a “real” explanation for how the Scooby Doo universe works. Such an explanation is unnecessary, and Scooby Doo is exactly what it is. Please don’t misinterpret my post as an attempt to make sense of Scooby Doo. It was just a flight of fancy, a bit of fun. Scooby Doo neither needs this explanation, nor would it be better with it.

  24. Layla
    Posted April 21, 2013 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    Oh my god, I love you.

  25. Captain Nitpick
    Posted May 25, 2013 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    If you’re still interested in this idea, you should look into Scooby Doo! Mystery Incorporated. The producers did the same sort of overthinking you did.

    It starts off with guys in rubber masks. Things slowly get…weird.

  26. Spacechamploo
    Posted June 23, 2013 at 3:19 am | Permalink

    First I’ve got to say, this interpretation was pretty cool. Im a big mythological fan especially when it comes to monsters, i also grew up on scooby doo and loved over analyzing everything. I know that scooby doo doesn’t need to be overanalyzed, but I liked what you wrote and so I’m going to bring up some scooby stuff I remember to poke holes in your theory, not because I think your firmly believe this, but because I think its fun.
    Anyway blabbing aside. The episode im speaking on is about a monster called the creeper(green skin, yellow bug eyes, green suite, and hunched over). This monster is probably one of the more frightening ones and based on your theory seems very likely to be a human which was completely taken over by the evil costume, but heres the problem. We find out at the beginning of the episode that the creeper is a phantom who can walk through walls and has been robbing banks in the dead of night( i dont know why no one says that anymore, its such a good expression). We learn this from the bank manager, and after some chases and horse rides the gang captures the creeper by sending him through a hey bailer, which i think might just kill him, and rip his mask off to find hes the manager of the bank thats been robbed. We then learn that the manager was the last to leave the bank during the day and would then steal money and leave. Then he would return at night with a briefcase dressed as the creeper, and make sure people were around and run from the bank making it look like the creeper robbed the places rather than himself. Now im going to assume that since they claimed the bank had been robbed on multiple occasions, it would mean the manager would be able to take the costume on and off. If your theory is true, and once again just for fun, how would he do this? If the cursed costume turns them into monsters and makes them act like monsters, how would this old bank manager (looked about 60) be able to combat those dark forces on multiple occasions. And yet when the gang meets him he is crazy go nuts, screaming and running about crazily. This would suggest the human is in his latest stage of transformation, but the manager took the costume off about an hour before he went berserk. Once again I know this is just for fun, but im just asking you to indulge my curriosities simply for the awesome fun of scooby doo.

    • Eileen Andrews
      Posted November 24, 2014 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

      In your continued spirit of fun, the bank manager is the exception. He knew about the Doo Curse, the Accursed Costumes, and the Mystery-Solving Kids and decided to double…no triple fool them.

  27. YellowSchoolBud
    Posted February 14, 2014 at 9:02 am | Permalink


  28. FutureAuthor
    Posted March 2, 2014 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    Well, Shaggy and his family are the owners of the Doo clan. Maybe the two families were close friends and when the doos were cursed, the Rogers took them in.

  29. Average Joe
    Posted April 29, 2014 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    This could be true, and if so, it would be an excellent explanation for why dogs talk. Or it could just be that dogs don’t talk, and, being the 70s, everyone was just perpetually high. I mean, have you seen the Mystery Machine?

  30. chrisjay
    Posted June 15, 2014 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    Yes indeed they were just tripping out their skulls on scooby snacks , they were just some youngsters hoovering bongs and getting wasted hahahaha

  31. Logic Seeker
    Posted July 7, 2014 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Like the author of this article, I too prefer my chosen media to make some sense. Unfortunately Scooby Doo completely fails and severely irritates me beyond words.

    If their target audience is 5 year olds and their intention is to mesmerize them with moving pictures then the show is a success. But when it fills airtime during my favourite time slot on “kids WB tv” it becomes an annoying problem.

    Okay lets forget the same repetitive predictable storyline taking place at a hotel or carnival and how they setup this ridiciliously unrealistic trap to catch these fake monsters. But what annoys me the most aboyt Scooby-poo is the superhuman level of damage these people in haloween costumes can do.

    In todays episode the people in these tight skinny latex monster suites were able to smash through the walls like it was made of paper, they broke down the large front door of the hotel, they climbed up walls like spiders and then took these huge chunk of bites right through the hard wooden staircase and demolished it. Need I say more?

  32. TGAB
    Posted July 8, 2014 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    I quite enjoy the ideas put forward in this article but, going by the theories posed here as fact, could the scooby clan in fact be wearing costumes themselves?
    think about it scooby dum had been wearing the costume longer and so had become more like a dog losing much of his intelligence. Scooby doo himself had worn it for enough time that both his speech and walking patterns had been effected but much of his intelligence remained.
    As for scrappy; it would make sense that he put on his costume last of all. This would explain not only his unaffected speech and walking patterns but also the fact that he did not appear in the show until much later.
    My final point is that all these costumes draw to one another. This explains why, not only they always find monsters everywhere they go, but also why the scooby clan see themselves as related. Not by blood but because they are people of a similar mindset who are also in a similar predicament!

    • Eileen Andrews
      Posted November 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm | Permalink


  33. TGAB
    Posted July 9, 2014 at 5:02 am | Permalink

    This could also explain why when called a dog scooby doo always replies with
    “dog, where?” this is because as a human trying to keep a hold on whatever humanity he has left he finds great pain in the acknowledgement that he is in fact now a dog

  34. Rfsm
    Posted July 22, 2014 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

    I beilieve that the doos have somehow merged with light and also, im pre-ety sure that crystal cove atleast explains a little

  35. Rustin or um Justin
    Posted July 26, 2014 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

    There are all sorts of real world issues and we have 44 comments on this subject? Well I will end it all right here so we can get back to U.S.A. and Russia and their plan to have thermonuclear war over Ukraine.

    Here it is folks: Scooby-Doo is in fact the reality, we are the cartoon and Scooby and the gang watch us; daily.. There is a reason for this, not only are scooby and the gang fantastically perverted that they watch us every second of every day, they are the creators of the Matrix (which turned out to be true, so Leela tells me). Scooby and the gang monitor us to make sure things are running as it should, and for the pleasure they derive from it.

    So hopefully this puts a rest to this thread for now there is no more mystery to solve. And remember there is always money in the banana stand.

  36. Poohbear
    Posted September 9, 2014 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    Why is everyone making an innocent cartoon into something it’s not? I take it none of you know the history to Scooby Doo. If you pay attention to the episodes the bad guys clearly state why they decided to do what they did, no dark force came upon them and made them do anything. It’s a kid-friendly show, it means nothing, Scooy Doo has no “dark” meaning to it. I wish people would stop making this cartoon out to be something it’s not and educate themselves with the creation of the cartoon.

  37. xsentrych
    Posted September 9, 2014 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

    I do remember one reference to Scooby talking. I think it was during an episode of the Scooby Doo Movies (the spin-off where they meet celebrities who helped them solve the mystery). The Mystery Inc. gang met the Speed Buggy gang. Scooby was puzzled as to why Speed Buggy was
    was talking and someone said something to the effect of “That’s awfully strange coming from a talking dog!”

  38. Ryan
    Posted September 9, 2014 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    I got kicked out of a college English discussion on turn of the century gothic enlightenment for calling it scooby doo fiction…..that is all I have to contribute to the conversation.

  39. Prince Of Pot
    Posted October 26, 2014 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

    *sigh* ok… Lee, first and definitely THE most important thing (which also shudnt be anything less than “up-in-your-face-shouting” obvious) but dude its a cartoon, cartoons arnt supposed to make sense or even merits any sorta obligation to be logical in any way, and secondly, the scoobs’ arnt exactly talking they are mimicing the sounds human make when speaking as close as they possibly can with their barking notice that alsmost every other word if not all the words the scoobs’ are “saying” starts with an R sound cuz when u spell a dogs bark usually u wuld spell it like “Ruff-Ruff” am i right? of course i am and also look up on youtube “dog says i love you” it shud be a husky in the vid atleast there is in the vid i seen and yes its a real life husky dog barking the words “i love you” and also the criminals that are in those “cursed” costumes stay in character til the masks are pulled off is bcuz its a lil thing called hiding their faces so they’re not identified doin the crimes and also trying to intimidate n strike fear into everyone in the area of the crime they’re committin so that they culd finish their crimes with no one around n out of the costumes you so deeply believe are cursed, Zoinks! like Lee u need to settle down or get yourself a tampon which ever one settles you down k? Lol oh ye i almost forgot, as for scrappy doo, well.. i got nothing, possibly its all that PUPPY-POWER!!!! hes always all hopped up on lol i unno scoobys nephew is alil gangster hes cocky n seemingly fearless cuz he runs in first without any regard to his own well being but ye in short scrappy is the onli one i still scratch my head about when i over think about all these cartoons lol

  40. ThePothead420
    Posted October 26, 2014 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    *sigh* ok… Lee, first and definitely THE most important thing (which also shudnt be anything less than “up-in-your-face-shouting” obvious) but dude its a cartoon, cartoons arnt supposed to make sense or even merits any sorta obligation to be logical in any way, and secondly, the scoobs’ arnt exactly talking they are mimicing the sounds human make when speaking as close as they possibly can with their barking notice that alsmost every other word if not all the words the scoobs’ are “saying” starts with an R sound cuz when u spell a dogs bark usually u wuld spell it like “Ruff-Ruff” am i right? of course i am and also look up on youtube “dog says i love you” it shud be a husky in the vid atleast there is in the vid i seen and yes its a real life husky dog barking the words “i love you” and also the criminals that are in those “cursed” costumes stay in character til the masks are pulled off is bcuz its a lil thing called hiding their faces so they’re not identified doin the crimes and also trying to intimidate n strike fear into everyone in the area of the crime they’re committin so that they culd finish their crimes with no one around n out of the costumes you so deeply believe are cursed, Zoinks! like Lee u need to settle down or get yourself a tampon which ever one settles you down k? Lol oh ye i almost forgot, as for scrappy doo, well.. i got nothing, possibly its all that PUPPY-POWER!!!! hes always all hopped up on lol i unno scoobys nephew is alil gangster hes cocky n seemingly fearless cuz he runs in first without any regard to his own well being but ye in short scrappy is the onli one i still scratch my head about when i over think about all these cartoons lol

    (I resent this cuz ibwasnt sure if it successfully sent the first time)

  41. Alexander Holgersson
    Posted November 19, 2014 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    One thing I can never understand is why people think Velma is a lesbian… But anyway let’s talk about this post, Obiously, this isn’t true, the mystery gang solves mysteries for a living, but why does scooby talk? Well… It is a kids show, duh.

  42. JereWolf
    Posted November 20, 2014 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    @ A. Lee Martinez I am a nn published writer I am writing a story that basically is your idea of cursed masks I have been writing before I found your blog but you wrote it first I know I need to get the permission of WB to publish it first. But I also feel it would be plagiarism to not ask you if I can use your idea if yes message me at

    • A. Lee Martinez
      Posted November 22, 2014 at 3:25 am | Permalink

      People are often confused by what is and isn’t plagiarism.

      Using this idea, even as an acknowledged springboard, would not be plagiarism. Only if you used large sections of my own written text would it be usually be considered plagiarism. This is only an idea, and I have no copyright on an idea.

      In other words, go for it.

  43. Posted November 21, 2014 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

    Of course it’s only a cartoon! But it’s fun to try and explain it in real-world terms. I loved the cartoon when I was a kid, but never questioned the fact of a talking dog–it was a cartoon, after all!

    But if you think about it too much, then yes, you have to wonder why Scooby is has a (nearly) human intelligence and can talk.

    The idea of Scooby being a human in a dog costume doesn’t really impress me that much, I’m afraid. I think it’s more likely that Scooby Doo is the result of secret genetic experiments on animals. Maybe the gang found Scooby while on an early mystery, and the scientist was dressing up as some kind of monster to keep people away from his secret lab. Scooby-Dum and Scrappy were also the results of experiments at the lab, but were held by the authorities for investigation and observation before they were finally freed to live their own lives.

    In fact, this theory ties in rather nicely with the Mystery, Incorporated series, because we see in the later series that they have a special facility for holding weird animals, as Scooby is temporarily put into it. They probably keep them there because they don’t know what else to do with them.

    But yeah, if it were real, I think everyone would be questioning why Scooby can talk, and many people would have designs on poor Scoob, wanting to experiment on him or put him on special exhibition, or what have you.

  44. Eileen Andrews
    Posted November 24, 2014 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    I cannot even tell you how much I LOVE this article! I am sitting at work desperately trying not too laugh out loud. I had to cover my mouth a couple times. And I am pretty sure a couple co-workers might think I’ve gone off the deep end! I love everything Scooby-Doo…and adore picking it to pieces. Thanks for the intellectual stimuation and lightening my whole day.

  45. TC
    Posted March 23, 2015 at 3:47 pm | Permalink
  46. Posted June 9, 2015 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Vigilantism is illigal. The Mystery Gang are out catching criminals independent of the police. They are vigilantes. The police should be arresting them instead. End their reign of terror today. #VigilantismIsAScoobyDon’t

  47. Billy da Stoner Kyd
    Posted August 20, 2015 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    Nah man. Scooby and Shaggy is always high on pot and LSD. That is why Shaggy can only talk to Scooby. But the whole gang dose smoke pot. Just notas much as Scooby and Shaggy. But thy are all drop outs driving cross country selling weed(and other drugs) that Velma grows. Everyone knows Daphneand Fred are having sex. But people believe they are sex addicts.
    Some also believes Velma is a lesbian. While others believes she is fucking Scooby. I think its both. I believe she is also a sex addict that is fucking the whole gang. That why she sit in the back with Scooby and Shaggy. Thats why Daphne aways disappears and found tied up, and Fred and Velma find her together.
    Just think about it man.

  48. kaingin longeto lario
    Posted September 25, 2015 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    Why does dahpne doing in scooby doo and scrappy show? I thought that shaggy is the only. one who parted with scooby

  49. christian
    Posted January 9, 2016 at 1:21 am | Permalink

    very good theory , but you forgot some episodes that the woman not dressed like monster , instead he made a robot monster

One Trackback

  1. By SF Signal: SF Tidbits for 6/12/10 on June 12, 2010 at 3:37 am

    […] Johnstone on Travel By Thought: Cherie Priest's Boneshaker, Hype, and Taste.A. Lee Martinez on The Dark Secrets of Scooby Doo Revealed.JG Ballard: Warrior for Gaia?Amanda Rutter on Fantasy Films vs. Fantasy Books: Why so […]

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