Customer Reviews: Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: The Complete Season 1
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on September 2, 2013
Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated is probably the biggest animated surprise I've seen in recent years. Before watching it I would have never thought there was a way of recreating these characters in a new, interesting way. The show managed to not only breath new life in to archetypal characters everyone already knows by heart, but also manages to put them in engaging stories and develop them as characters. I cared about the characters in Mystery Incorporated, and wanted to know how they'd get through things. Pretty impressive given this is the Scooby gang we're talking about.

I'm 20 years old now, and I'm not a hardcore Scooby fan. Of course I loved the Hanna-Barbera cartoons when I was a child, but they didn't exactly have incredible lasting power as I got older. Various other attempts to revise the characters likewise didn't impress me much either. 2002's "What's New Scooby-Doo?" tried updating the stories, and character designs for modern viewers but fell flat, failing to capture my imagination as an older viewer (although the character redesigns were pretty good). After "What's New" I figured that any other Scooby-Doo revival would fail in the same manner.

Boy, was I wrong!

Scooby-Doo!: Mystery Incorporated is different. It follows the general concept that we all know by heart, but it has a great sense of humor, and creates arcs for the characters to go through. And I can't overstate how awesome it is to see this in a 'Scooby-Doo!' cartoon! I feel for the characters, I want to see how they develop, and want to know how the overarching plot of the series is going to play out.

Characters are an important part of the series. While the slapstick and Scooby's antics are always good for young audiences I found that -for a family targeted cartoon- the show effectively tackled issues of growing up, and what being a teenager is like. Issues such as first dates, remaining friends with someone after a break-up, self-confidence, and deciding who you want to be as an adult. The writers perfectly bring these issues down to a level that children may understand, but they don't dumb it down to the point that older audiences can't relate to the gang. In season 1 every character goes through changes and must make hard decisions and it pulled me in so that I was rooting for them from episode 1 to 26!

Mystery Incorporated has smooth, streamlined character design, and returns the cast to their retro-1960s wardrobe (yes, Freddy is rocking the ascot). These designs work as an update while remaining true to the designs embedded in our pop culture subconscious (only noticeable difference being that Velma now has red bows in her hair). But the real star of the animation is the monster designs! Many of these are so good that I honestly wished they weren't just people in masks. Take note, Warner Bros.: Put this team on production of a fantasy series. I want to see what they can do outside the shackles of the "someone in a mask" formula.

The setting seems to be a mix of the 60s and modern times. Devices like laptops and cellphones appear, but I believe the creators made the wise choice of giving Mystery Incorporated a setting that makes it feel as if it could be set in multiple eras. We got the 60s fashion, we got modern technology, a 1970s style radio DJ, and episodes devoted to goth bands, the fiction of H.P. Lovecraft going up against tween vampire novels, the films of Vincent Price, and many more! No matter what decade you owe your childhood to odds are you'll find something to connect to in Mystery Incorporated. In that way I feel this series is going to age remarkably well compared to others series in the franchise.

'Scooby-Doo!' is such a recognizable franchise that they could have slapped anything on the screen and cashed in. They didn't need to write engaging character stories or narrative that branches across multiple episodes, but they did and it makes the series one of the most enjoyable cartoons in recent memory. I am happy to see Warner Bros. is releasing Scooby-Doo!: Mystery Incorporated's first season in a single boxset just in time for Halloween. It is well-written, funny, and provides greater depth to the character than any other series in the franchise's long history. If you have kids, or just want to watch a great revival of these classic characters. I can't recommend Season 1 of Scooby-Doo: Mystery Incorporated highly enough.
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on October 6, 2013
I think this was a show written for the long time fans. There's definitely more character development and some adult themes, but my 3 year old does fine with the show. I like that there is now a story arc and character development. The mysteries are, as expected not terribly hard to solve for an adult, but the sheer number of voice talents from Harlan Ellison, George Takei, Lewis Black, Vivica A. Fox, Mark Hamill and Patrick Warburton and others. This isn't just a cheap thrown together show. Everything seems to have been fairly well thought out and plotted, keeping to the spirit of the original series while adding just a bit more meat to the story. It makes the series and characters seem so much more than 2 dimensional cartoons. I'm looking forward to seeing season 2.
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on October 20, 2013
My daughter is a HUGE Scooby fan. Even though I didn't think it possible, I got tired of watching the classic Scooby episodes from the 70s. There are some changes in Mystery Inc story, but I like the more complex story lines ... keeps me tuned in when I'm watching with my 4 year old.
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on May 13, 2014
Being a 21 year old, I was fearing that this reboot would be too obnoxious/ridiculous/cartoony to watch, but when I watched the first episode, I was instantly hooked!

It certainly plays homage to the original 'Scooby Do: Where are You?' series in the very first episode when Velma showcases some of the villains from the first series, such as Miner 49er. A whole episode is even dedicated as a homage to The Creeper from the first series. Even younger fans can appreciate references from the surrounding Classic Hannah Barbera cartoons, and my personal favorites from 'The Witchs' Ghost'/'What's New Scooby Doo', The Hex Girls. I also love the classic homages to horror, such as Cthulu, the Mummy, and Fright Night.
But despite the amazing homages to its own series and horror, it sets its own image with witty writing, humor that reaches all ages, and intriguing plot. To revamp the series, they had the classic 'every episode is a new mystery to trap' ordeal, with a season long mystery regarding a "Mr. E". I also applaud the visual quality, and the over-all "scary-ness" of the episodes.
My only critique is the stereotypes of each character, particularly Daphne's obsession with Fred, where in multiple episode, she did not feel as a stand-out character, but more of a compliment to Fred's character development.

I think the series wrapped up nicely, but I hope they bring it back!

TL;DR: this revamp can certainly be enjoyed by all ages, particularly avid Scooby Doo fans!
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on September 11, 2013
I was pleasantly surprised with Scooby-Doo: Mystery Incorporated when it debuted on the Cartoon Network. The clever writing paid homage to the original series and much of the cartoon's long history. We even saw glimpses of other vintage Hanna Barbera cartoons pop up now and then. The animation style of the characters is a little too stylistic for my taste, being a bit too angular but it is nice to see them in their original clothes. The backgrounds are bright and a bit impressionistic but they work well and add greatly to the artistic feel of the series.
Unfortunately much of this artistry is greatly diminished on standard definition DVD. These brilliant colors and great animation scream for Blu-Ray presentation. As a long time collector of nearly every Scooby presentation from Warner Brothers, I struggled to put off buying the piecemeal release of this iteration of the franchise but succumbed eventually. Now we have a new release of the first season in a complete package, but still no BD option. Come on guys! I'm waiting for Mystery Inc. in all it's beautiful glory.
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on April 20, 2015
This series is my favorite version of the gang. I laughed at jokes that went way over my kids' heads but they still love to watch these episodes more than me.

The episodes themselves deviate from the standard formula enough to hold interest.

I liked the first season best, where it's strictly men in masks. My kids like the second, which features some real monsters like reluctant werewolf and ghoul school do.

I put off buying this series even though Amazon kept recommending it to me because I thought from the covers the animation quality would be something like power puff girls. It's not, it's similar to the newer Scooby movies like Scooby doo wrestlemania. Shading, clear backgrounds ect.

I hope they will continue this series in a road trip / college theme for the gang.
I highly recommend it.
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on May 31, 2014
Scooby Doo has undergone many different formats from its original incarnation in 1969. This is a great tribute to the original series and probably the closest to "Scooby Doo Where are You". While there is a little too much love drama going on, but the characters development is very good. The monsters/villans are either very creative or very ridiculous...depends on the episode. Overall the series is written very well and if you love Scooby Doo than this is a must have for your collection
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on April 24, 2014
I bought this collection for my husband's birthday. Yes, my husband. My children keep asking for it and we find ourselves popping in a disc after they've gone to sleep at night. As much as we liked the original Scooby Doo, we're enjoying the Mystery Inc. version just as much. There's a lot of little quips, subtle humor, a good ongoing storyline and all the fun of the original characters. Probably our only objection would be ... where's the Complete Second Season?
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on May 1, 2016
It is s fresh take on the series. It is much darker, and they did put too much relationship drama in it.
The on and off relationship with Velma and Shaggy really rings false. The new snarky Velma is also not and improvement.

Season Two gets very dark, so that's something to think about before starting in the first place.
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on June 26, 2014
I was a fan of A Pup Named Scooby Doo back in the day, one of my favorite shows. My little brother watched Scooby Doo almost religiously. So when I found out about this series, I decided to take it upon myself to rekindle our mutual love for Scooby Doo.
We were not disappointed.
This series is damn-near perfect. It has the old-fashioned, campy fun of the original series and adds on to it with an over-arching story that, in itself, gets darker the further it progresses. The characters are rebuilt from the ground up and given personality, while maintaining their over-all look and feel. There are even some big-time cameo voices in the series: Lewis Black, Vivica A. Fox, Harlan Ellis, George Takei, James Hong, and even Casey Kasem (Rest in Peace, Casey, you were THE SHAGGY!) as Shaggy's father.
The series is definitely worth watching, even if you're an old-time Scooby fan, this series will make you relive the good old days of yore, and there's an episode a lot of children from the '60's and '70's would appreciate. Granted, the episode alone was kind of throwaway filler, but it's still worth watching for the amount of nostalgic insanity it would invoke in parents who grew up with the old Scooby Doo.
It's good, honest fun with a great story, excellent writing, jokes, and animation and I recommend it to anyone who wants to go back to the old formula with a few new ingredients.
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