The evolution of the Internet has given us the ability to have almost the entirety of Scooby-Doo history at our fingertips with a quick search. However, the same can't be said for the history of the online fandom. In the past few decades, the Internet has changed so much and it’s created countless opportunities for fans to bond over their shared love of Scooby. There are tons of records that trace the history of Scooby-Doo as a franchise over the years. However, to my knowledge, there’s never really been any sort of article that does a deep dive on how the Scooby-Doo fandom has evolved over the years. For the past few months, I’ve been doing research on the evolution of the fandom from its beginning to the present day, both through Internet research and interviewing well-known people within the Scooby fandom. With that, I’d like to present this timeline of the Scooby-Doo fandom’s evolution.
The late 1990s is when the first remnants of the Scooby fandom began surfacing online. One of the first Scooby-Doo sites, The Complete Scooby-Doo Episode Guide, began in 1997 on a university server. The site administrator, Joel, originally made this Scooby-Doo site for a class project while he was attending University (he got an A, if you’re curious). At the time, search engines like Google did not exist yet, thus making it a lot harder to find other Scooby-Doo sites than it is now. Scooby sites would often link to one another, which made it easier to find other sites about Scooby-Doo once you found one. Joel gives us some insight into the process behind building his site while he was in University.
“I found some books on cartoons in my University library that had episode listings of Scooby-Doo along with the voice actors, so I put that online. This was way before Google and the Internet was in its early stages,” Joel explains. “AOL wasn't a huge thing just yet, making it difficult to get online, so the fandom I was introduced to were mainly university and college-aged kids (as you’d get a free Internet account at your school back then) who were nostalgic about Scooby-Doo. Many of them would send me episode synopses and screen captures to help me flesh out the information on the website.”
The fandom was also quite different back then compared to today, given the franchise had been revived with Zombie Island after a long lull of no Scooby-Doo content.
“Way back when I started out, we mostly discussed the original 1960s-1970s series and the made for TV movies like the Reluctant Werewolf and we were all in our twenties. When Zombie Island came out, there was a huge interest and excitement for that as it also brought a lot of new merchandise to the store shelves,” Joel shares. “The Blair Witch parody and Johnny Bravo episode also brought a lot of excitement to our lives back then as this was the first new Scooby material we saw since a Pup Named Scooby-Doo ended.”
Because the online fandom was so small at this time, Joel also got the unique opportunity to talk to a number of Scooby-Doo writers through his website.
“It was an amazing time for me as I started to hear from many of the writers from Scooby-Doo who sent me scripts, storyboards, artwork, and background information,” Joel informs. “By the time 1999 rolled around, the Cartoon Network and Warner (Bros.) would send me free promotional swag and DVDs, and other Scooby fans sent me a lot of toys, colouring books, VHS tapes, T-shirts and collectables.”
Joel also mentions a “separate side” of the fandom that collected rare animation cels costing thousands of dollars.
When Joel graduated from University, he could no longer host the site on his university’s server and found another place to publish his site. Despite Joel’s love of the fandom and the enjoyment he gained through running his site, he eventually had to take his site down in 2003 due to it costing an exorbitant amount to continue to keep it online through the new server. Joel would later go on to create a new site in 2019. (Keep reading to find out more about it, as we’ll return to it once we reach that year chronologically.)
The website Scooby-Doo, We Love You was also created sometime during this period, which to my knowledge, was the first Scooby-Doo website that provided a comprehensive guide to the franchise. The site provided listings for every single Scooby-Doo episode, film, video game and special, and even included a “family tree” page. As a minor aside, I actually liked the format of their episode guides so much that it partially inspired the way I created mine for this site. While I can’t find an exact date for when this site was created, I found a page listing updates as far back as October 2003, which I don’t believe was the first update because I’m almost positive the site was created before then. Unfortunately, the site owner stopped updating it in 2007, and it’s actually been taken offline now. However, you can still view screenshots of the site at Archive.org.
Around that time, there were also some fans that were creating websites on AOL, Angelfire, and GeoCities, all of which have since been taken down, though screenshots of many of them can still be viewed on Archive.org. I wouldn’t say these affected the direction of the fandom as much as We Love You did, and there was little research to be found about how well-known they were, but I still find it interesting to see the difference between what Scooby sites looked like back then compared to today. Here’s one about the “Unofficial Mystery Machine” that someone owned. There’s also the very comprehensive Scoobyville U.S.A. site, featuring episode guides, movies, merchandise, and even a Cartoon Network schedule from back in the day. The CJB Scooby-Doo site really takes us back, given it even has an “enter” button that you have to click before you can view the site. For those that don’t know, this was very common on websites in the 90s and early 2000s, so it was a fun little nostalgia trip to see one of those again.
Another interesting site from around that early 2000s time, which is actually still active, is VelmaDinkley.com. The site was maintained by John Likeglass and was first published in late 1999, and was an entire website dedicated to all-things Velma related. There were also some fanfiction and fan art contests, character bios, some images from various episodes, and more. If you look at the bottom of the site, people who are old enough to remember those little view counters from the 90s/2000s will notice there’s one of those at the bottom of the site!
Though there were a lot of fan sites in the early 2000s, many of them were somewhat niche and unfortunately are no longer updated today. It wasn’t until 2006 that a Scooby site that nearly the entire fandom has likely used, or referenced in some way, came into existence. That site is Scoobypedia, a Scooby-Doo fan encyclopedia that now has pretty much all the information you could ever need about Scooby, and continues to grow to this day. The site does have some unexpected origins, however. Scoobypedia was created by a user named The Scoobypedian in 2006, who according to his user page was a 12-year-old boy at the time of starting the site. Other than these few details, it’s unknown who this person was, as they created the site and left within a few months. At the time, however, Scoobypedia was relatively bare bones and nothing like how you see it today. Scoobypedia didn’t start growing into the expansive encyclopedia of all things Scooby until 2010, which I will come back to once we reach that year chronologically in the article.
Around this same time period, PantherGR’s Scooby-Doo site went live on GeoCities. Most likely, this is not a name you would recognize. However, the administrator of this site has since created one of the most well-known Scooby-Doo sites on the Internet. This person is Nikki Blake, who created the ScoobyAddicts site and forum. The ScoobyAddicts website has an extensive amount of information about Scooby, including a history of the series, character info, an episode guide, merchandise, and a blog.
“I mainly started ScoobyAddicts so that I could have as much Scooby-Doo information in one place to make it easier for me to find it all. There wasn't really anywhere to go to get all of the information in one place,” Nikki explains. “I knew my old site needed a new name and a new look so I updated everything about it. I made the site for myself, but I also hoped that other people could possibly get some benefit out of the website too if they were interested in Scooby-Doo.”
After a lot of research and planning, the ScoobyAddicts site went live on February 1, 2007. A year later, on April 15, 2008, Nikki also created one of the most popular places to discuss Scooby in the fandom: the ScoobyAddicts forum.
“I created the forum because I wanted a place to talk to other Scooby fans. I never really had anyone in my life that was as interested in Scooby-Doo as I am, and no one that wanted to discuss Scooby-Doo with me in any capacity,” Nikki shares. “The forum allowed me to have conversations with other people that were also interested in Scooby-Doo and we could share our opinions on different series and shows or just about general topics revolving around Scooby.”
Since 2008, the forum has blossomed and still remains a popular place for fans to discuss all things Scooby to this day, whether it be the episodes and films, the comics, merch, and everything in between. The ScoobyAddicts forum was one of the first places on the Internet that was specifically dedicated to fans interacting with one another, and has arguably influenced how interactive the fandom is today.
Around this same time in 2009, SpiderScooby of ScoobyFan.net was just getting into the franchise.
“I was getting back into Scooby again after falling off the Scooby bandwagon for a couple years. I decided to check out some Scooby-related websites. One of those was ScoobyAddicts.com. I thought it would be fun to create my own blog where I could post reviews and news.” SpiderScooby shares. “I think the announcement of a live-action prequel headed to Cartoon Network may have pushed me to do it too. When I started digging into the Scooby fandom around 2008 / 2009, it definitely felt more niche.”
Besides the couple of Scooby sites out there at the time, social media was also just rising to popularity within the broader society. However, the social media side of the fandom back in 2009 looked almost nothing like it does today.
“It was basically non-existent.” SpiderScooby informs. “There was me, ScoobyAddict, and a few others back then. But that was it.”
A few years had passed since the creation of Scoobypedia, and the site remained relatively stagnant besides the occasional editor and addition. 2010 was the year Scobypedia began to start really growing, all thanks to James, who you may know better under the usernames Anythingspossibleforapossible or TheAtomicLight. James, who was an admin on Scoobypedia for nearly 11 years before recently stepping down, was essentially the driving force which built the encyclopedia up to be what people know it as today.
“I had been watching Scooby-Doo casually since December 2007, which eventually led to me joining Scoobypedia on January 10, 2010. Why I was inspired to join was out of simple curiosity if there was a Scooby-Doo "wiki." I didn't join as a major Scooby-Doo fan, as some other people would've. Me becoming a fan and joining Scoobypedia actually came hand in hand,” James explains. “Contributing to Scoobypedia had become an outlet for me, a hobby for me when there was nothing else to do.
James began to significantly expand on the amount of content on Scoobypedia through doing significant research watching Scooby-Doo episodes and films.
“I had to watch Scooby-Doo more regularly than I had done if I was going to be of any proper use to the site, and that's where my interest and love of the franchise grew.” James says..
After a year of hard work, James was approached by Pandio, the administrator of the site at the time, and was given rollback and bureaucrat rights on Scoobypedia. Shortly after, Pandio decided to move on from Scoobypedia, and left James in charge.
Now that James was an administrator, this increased his motivation even more to make sure Scoobypedia was a reliable place where fans could come and know they were getting the right information.
“Over the 11 years that I was there, I just wanted to provide all the information that came on-screen, in a book, etc, providing readers with what actually happened and reveal little tidbits that they may not have ever known before, providing clarity and squashing false facts. I think I succeeded in that.” James says.
Of course, given Scoobypedia is a user-contributed site that anyone could sign up and edit, the experience building up the encyclopedia was not always positive. Over the years, there were a number of trolls, spammers, and editors who sought to trick others by adding false information.
“It's something you have to maintain frequently because it does get heavy attention and not always the best attention.” James shares. “You have to monitor vandals, and if people are following the rules and guidelines, which when we finally did set up, some just ignored (them) anyway.”
There were also some logistical problems in running such a widely-viewed encyclopedia. James cites one example of a rule that he had to create when episodes or films would air in some countries long before they would be shown in the United States.
“I had to make the decision to only cover stuff when it officially aired in order on Cartoon Network in the USA. That decision always bugged me, because I felt like I was denying the encyclopedia, but I was also trying to be fair to readers.” James explains. “I also did it for movies and Be Cool, and Guess Who (there was no important order with those two series, of course, but it had become a habit by then).”
For 11 years, along with the assistance of Scoobypedia contributors, James ran the site and continuously added new information by adding new content as it came out, and improving upon the old content by adding new details and correcting whatever mistakes editors may have unintentionally (or intentionally) added. More and more, editors joined as the years went on to add information to articles, and the encyclopedia still(?) continues to get more and more expansive.
In addition to the content pages, Scoobypedia also includes a forum area in which fans could discuss various Scooby related topics.
This past year, however, James decided to step down from his role as the administrator of Scoobypedia, and handed the leadership role over to some others who he trusted. He has since moved on to another Hanna-Barbera related project.
“My favourite part of running Scoobypedia was knowing that I was making some kind of difference, in my humble opinion.” James explains. “I was fortunate enough to find out there were people I could trust, and when they would leave, others would come in their place, and keep that feeling going for almost 11 years until I had had enough of running the place and moved on.”
Today, Scoobypedia still remains one of the most expansive Scooby-Doo sites on the Internet. If you’re looking for a piece of information on Scooby, whether it be the title of an episode, the name of a villain, or even as specific as a random object that appeared in the episode, you will most likely find what information you need there.
During the summer of 2014, I decided to create my own Scooby-Doo site, ScoobySnax.com. At the time, I’d been a part of the fandom for six years, which all started when I joined the ScoobyAddicts forum in 2008. I didn’t go into making the site thinking that I was the most knowledgeable Scooby fan out there or to attempt to compete with any other Scooby content creator. The site was simply a project that I wanted to make for myself based on my unique take and opinions on the franchise. I wanted the site to be very simple and user-friendly, so it was approachable to anyone who was a fan of Scooby regardless of how much they knew. Along with the site, I decided to create a blog. Originally, I wasn’t really sure how I wanted to use the blog, other than I knew I wanted to use it to share news about the franchise. I didn’t really have any expectations for if people were going to read or engage with the blog or not, and I came in with the mindset that I was just making the blog for myself, and if anyone else enjoyed it, then that was a bonus. After months of work creating the episode and movie guides, character guide, video game page, along with a few others, the site and blog were published for the first time on September 3, 2014.
A month after its creation, I decided to randomly post some trivia bits each week just to do something different and fun. To my surprise, people started engaging with them, and telling me how interesting they found the trivia and that they looked forward to me posting them each week. I decided to make publishing these trivia bits each week a regular thing. I chose Mondays as the publish day, since people traditionally find Mondays to be the most challenging day of the week, and I wanted to bring a little fun into people’s lives on their least favorite day of the week. To this day, I’ve continued to post the fun facts every Monday, and sometimes even get people asking to guest-write them, which is always fun. I’m now approaching 400 weeks in a row of posting these weekly fun facts, which is far more than I ever would have expected when I started.
Over the years, I’ve slowly continued to grow the site with various new pages and projects. Out of everything on the site, I’ve gotten a lot of feedback on the How to Have a Complete Scooby-Doo Collection page. I originally created the page because purchasing Scooby episodes can be very confusing given how many times WB chooses to release the same episodes over and over on DVDs (“Hassle in the Castle” has been released over 20 times on different DVDs). I’ve been super happy how helpful people have found that guide, and it always makes me happy when someone sends an email telling me that they were able to grow or even complete their home media collection thanks to my list.
Since its creation, I’ve expanded the blog to include weekly polls asking a different question about the franchise each week, as well as monthly editorial articles and other collaborative projects. It’s been so much fun getting to share news and creatively express myself through the blog, and I’m so honored that it’s become a community where new and old fans alike can discuss aspects of the franchise and bond over our shared love of Scooby-Doo.
In mid-2016, Canadian Scooby fan Mike Jozic began preparations to start his own Scooby-Doo podcast. At the time, there were very few Scooby-Doo podcasts out there.
“It was basically a desire to find more information on the creation of Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island. I have always been interested in behind-the-scenes stuff and after watching the movie one night I was curious about the events that led to the development of that film. What was the state of WB Animation at the time? Who was responsible for giving the green light? What were the ambitions for the project? What was the process like for the team who put it together? After a bit of a search online I discovered that there really wasn’t a lot of in-depth information on that period of the franchise or that project, in particular. Having a background in this sort of thing, and needing a platform to contact these people and ask the questions I had, I decided to create the podcast.” Mike says on putting his podcast together.
Mike decided to approach his podcast from an interview-based format, talking to cast and crew members who had worked on various Scooby projects. Previous to this, interviews with people who had worked on the shows had only been done in written format, so Mike’s podcast, A Podcast Named Scooby-Doo!, was needless to say quite revolutionary for the fandom.
There were also no commentaries of any sort on works of the franchise by Scooby creatives. This was another motivation for Mike in creating his podcast.
“There’s a reason some of my first interviews were with Lance Falk and Steve Bramson. Another drive to create the podcast was to create opportunities to approach creatives and have them record audio commentaries for episodes of films that they’ve worked on,” Mike explains. “I, myself, am a big special features nut and commentaries are things that I particularly enjoy so, being able to provide that when Warner Bros. so clearly has no interest in it, that was also a big plus to creating the show.”
Through these interviews, Mike asks detailed questions of the people responsible for creating the franchise, to uncover never-before-heard history tidbits about the Scooby franchise. The first episode of the podcast, featuring Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! writer Tom Konkle was first released November 12, 2016.
As the podcast went on, Mike decided to broaden the scope of his episodes and began covering some other Hanna-Barbera content unrelated to Scooby.
“I also adopted a broader Hanna-Barbera mandate with the show that I never intended at the outset of the project. I found that over the course of developing the podcast and my continued research into the franchise and Hanna-Barbera Studios I discovered there wasn’t a lot of actual history done on most of the H-B shows or the creators at the studio,” Mike shares. “They have sort of fallen into historical obscurity, mostly due to the fact that it was often cheaply done and mass-produced. Even Scooby-Doo, their most popular IP to date, doesn’t have a lot of historical work or archival discussion beyond the original 1969 show, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! Joe and Bill kind of saved animation back in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s, employing many artists and other creatives when all the studios were shutting down their animation departments, and laid the foundation for most of the shows we enjoy today by showing that there is a market for animation on television. That stuff, and the boom and bust that followed, really interests me and I hope that, as the show continues on, that will be something I continue to explore.”
Reflecting back on the podcast’s impact now, Mike has had a few favorite experiences that he will never forget.
“Putting together the Christmas Special that I did back in 2017, The Doo Meaning of Christmas, was something that I’ll never forget. It was a logistical nightmare and I had one genuine anxiety attack in the middle of producing it. Still, it was so rewarding in the end. Bringing all of those people together to create segments for the show on such short notice was an absolutely crazy idea to begin with but everyone was so accommodating and made the time to contribute even though they were all so busy with their own holiday stuff. Tom Konkle recording his parts on his iPhone, off of my emailed script, while driving to visit his family on the 23rd of December was just madness. But we did it. It came out on Christmas Eve, on-time, as planned, and…you may have noticed I have yet to tackle something like that again. You know, the making of that show would literally make an interesting blog post or VH1: Behind the Podcast episode. Maybe something for me to consider,” Mike shares. “Honestly, I think I discovered the Doo meaning of Christmas putting that show together. Art imitating life, right there.”
Besides specific experiences, Mike has said that he just enjoys the process of making the podcast in general.
“Connecting with the creatives is always a joy. I love talking to writers, artists, and what-have-you about their work, history, and process and hearing some of their comments about revisiting that period in their careers is really rewarding.” Mike reflects.
Also around 2016, Instagram started getting bigger, and thus so did the Scooby community. 2016 is when one of the first Scooby-Doo Instagram accounts, Scooby_News, joined. While the account wasn’t fully Scooby-Doo focused at first, it slowly evolved into an all-Scooby account.
“I made the account back in 2016 and just posted random Scooby stuff but also simple edits I made. Soon the account included other franchises I was a fan of, from Gravity Falls and Avatar to Steven Universe and Twin Peaks. However, it became hard not only to balance my content between so many shows but also to attract people who liked all of them.” Scoob16, who runs the account, shares. “As a result, I reverted back to Scooby content for some time before changing my theme into Scooby comics, since I kept up with them due to Scooby Apocalypse, which was my favorite and the focus of the account.”
In 2019, the Scooby Apocalypse series ended, leaving Scoob16 with a dilemma: either abandon the account, or change the theme of the account to something more broad so it would still be relevant.
“The idea for a news page popped up in my head almost immediately,” Scoob16 explains. “Scooby-Doo is a constantly ongoing franchise and, at the time, there was already confirmation on Scooby-Doo and Guess Who? and news on SCOOB!, so I thought a news account would certainly be busy. Turns out it's not as busy as I thought it'd be, at least the last few months, but I have found ways to keep the account as active as possible: I have upped my editing game and post almost daily, I organize themes and contests, and most recently I announced my first giveaway (long story, I was sent 2 copies of the Scooby-Doo! Encyclopedia book so I'm giving one away).”
Through posting news, creating edits of various Scooby-Doo images, and organizing contests for fans, Scoob16 has continued to see great success with his account, as have others. Over the past few years, there has been a huge increase in Scooby-Doo themed accounts on Instagram.
“When I first joined the app in 2016, there were very few fan pages. Now you almost see a couple of new pages every day!” Scoob16 informs. “A lot of them end up being abandoned and eventually deactivated, but you can clearly see there's an increasing love for Scooby, from older and younger audiences alike.”
In recent years, the ways of contributing and interacting in the fandom have diversified significantly. Another such way that shows the unique contributions of the Scooby fandom is demonstrated by Ashton Hardy, who runs the smASH YouTube channel.
In February 2016, Ashton created his YouTube channel, which originally focused around his life and varied interests.
“I have always loved making videos, whether it’s recording them or editing. I had my family's video camera handy with me at such a young age and would make all kinds of videos with my friends growing up. I never really saw that as any sort of passion path, more so just something I enjoy doing but that wouldn’t take me anywhere. When YouTube came out I could never get into it, all I saw it as was the cat videos website but never found content that interested me,” Ashton explains. “It wasn’t until one day when I was in high school I stumbled across a very well known youtuber ‘iJustine’ who covers a lot of different tech, especially Apple products. I loved her personality and was genuinely interested in what she made content on. I found her sister Jenna soon after and eventually that opened up doors to other content creators with more of my interests. It made me realize I could make videos on so many different things and I wanted to try it, so In February of 2016 I made my account and recorded my first video on my iPad. But I didn’t tell anyone, not my family and very few friends because I was so scared about doing it and what to even do. I continued to make videos but didn’t get too serious with it until about a year or two ago.”
When Ashton decided to create a narrower focus for his YouTube channel, he was originally thinking it would center around HRHS, a heart condition that Ashton has. However, the eventual focus of Ashton’s channel shifting to Scooby came about in an unexpected way.
“This is a funny one because originally I wanted my channel to be more about my heart condition, which I still include and I think have slowly become the Scooby fan who lives with half a heart xD But one year I was challenging myself to make a video a day, and let me tell you now never do that, it drains you in so many ways. So one night I was like, “Shoot I haven’t gotten a video out today,” and it was already nearing 11pm. So I decided to make the crappiest video ever and show my Scooby-Doo DVD collection at the time,” Ashton shares. “The audio was horrible, the lighting was harsh, it was thrown together in like a half hour, but somehow that became one of my biggest videos, people got so interested in what DVDs I had and they were all so impressed.”
When the trailer for Scooby-Doo and the Curse of the 13th Ghost dropped, Ashton created a reaction video, and found that his viewers loved his Scooby-Doo videos. He also discovered that many people felt just as he did: fearing that people would make fun of him for liking a cartoon. However, what ended up occurring was just the opposite.
“I started to get comments on my Scooby related videos saying like “Finally someone on YouTube that likes Scooby,” or “I love Scooby-Doo but I never bring it up with my friends because I’m worried they’ll think I’m childish,” and that stuck out to me.” Ashton recounts. “I suddenly felt like the person on YouTube that people came to watch for more content on this franchise that is thriving but kept quiet because of this weird “it’s for kids” mindset that’s been set for it.”
Unfortunately, many people in the fandom have found themselves worried about expressing their enjoyment of the franchise, due to the stigma that surrounds adults liking a show technically targeted at children. However, this stigma has begun to dissipate in the past few years due to the welcoming nature of the community.
“It really feels that in the last three or so years it has slowly become more… acceptable? To share your passion for it, and now my social pages are flooding with Scooby content, which is amazing because it seems this Scooby community that’s forming just keeps growing and many are so welcoming,” Ashton observes. “I do think a lot more adults, young adults as myself, mainly are present in the community from what I see, but I hope this is the start of making Scooby-Doo a more “acceptable franchise” as any other out there that has a big following.”
As the years have gone on, we are increasingly seeing the fandom grow, both through increased content creation and from more fans joining the fandom to talk with others about their favorite cartoon dog.
“I’ve been able to really get a feel of “my channel’s community” and what they want to see, what they want to talk about, and just their overall feelings are around all sorts of topics, Scooby and other things,” Ashton shares. “So in the end it’s the community that makes me keep making content, and I know I have kind of become the “Scooby YouTube channel.” I am beyond blessed to feel I even deserve to be given that title from the community, and I hope to continue to connect, grow, and interact with everyone who comes by to chat about those meddling kids.”
Around this same time, Joel, who you’ll remember started one of the first Scooby-Doo sites back in 1997, decided to create a brand new Scooby-Doo website to celebrate the franchise’s 50th anniversary in 2019. The new website was called Planet Scooby, which Joel approached from a different angle. On this new site, Joel decided to post weekly reviews of Scooby-Doo episodes through making in-depth YouTube videos. After a brief period between June 2020 and July 2021 the website was shortly taken offline, but has recently returned, and Joel continues to post his reviews every week. The site also has a “mystery map” where you can geo-locate real-life places the gang has solved mysteries around the world!
Reflecting back on his original site from 1997, Joel says he notices a distinct difference in the fandom between then and now.
“Since then, so much Scooby content has come out. Half the people I talk to have never even seen the original series and are just big fans of the live action movies. Others only love Mystery Inc or the direct to DVD movies,” Joel explains. “The amount of variety out there regarding Scooby-Doo is fantastic! The internet has brought everyone around the world together, so I get to talk to fans from everywhere, including Argentina, China, and England.”
However, his favorite thing about the fandom has remained the same through all these years: getting to connect with fans and hear their diverse perspectives on the franchise.
“My favorite thing is always to hear other Scooby fans’ perspectives on Scooby-Doo,” Joel shares. “I love it when people's views differ from mine and make me see a Scooby-Doo property in a different light. I also love it when people agree with me, and we can nerd out over a specific monster or scene from the episode.”
In recent years, the amount of special features on Scooby-Doo home media releases has been noticeably less, particularly behind-the-scenes featurettes for each of the DTVs and the series releases with more sizable content. Noticing this lack of featurettes, Alexa Lawlor decided to create her own: through making her own podcast centered around interviewing people who have worked on Scooby-Doo.
“I always loved watching the behind the scenes featurettes on Scooby VHS tapes and DVDs, but they haven't been doing that much anymore, and I really felt like the people working behind the scenes had so many great stories to tell about working on Scooby that I wanted to have a platform to showcase that!” Alexa explains. “I always wanted it to be about the interviews, I never want to talk too much, and it's something I always focus on when I'm working on an episode.”
The Unmasked History of Scooby-Doo Podcast focuses on interviewing people who have worked on the Scooby-Doo series and films over the years, from cast members, to writers, to producers, to background designers and art directors, and much more. Alexa has found the process of doing these interviews with Scooby cast and crew members quite rewarding, and says that her favorite part is getting to hear about some of the behind-the-scenes experiences that her interviewees have had creating Scooby-Doo media.
“I absolutely adore getting the chance to talk to the people who have worked on Scooby, everyone has been so nice and great about sharing their experiences. I love the behind the scenes stories, and more often than not it gives me a greater appreciation of the shows, movies, etc. And of course we wouldn't have as much Scooby content without the people that bring all of this Scooby media to life!” Alexa shares.
The podcast has been an incredible success for Alexa, and she has received a lot of great feedback from both interviewees and podcast listeners alike.
“The most memorable pieces of feedback have always been when someone tells me they've listened to multiple episodes of my podcast in one day! No greater compliment than that I don't think.” Alexa recounts. “I've also gotten really great feedback from the people who I've done interviews with, whether they listened to some episodes before coming on the podcast, or if they keep listening to episodes after they've been on!”
The Scooby-Doo fandom has evolved in a lot of different ways over the years. Through websites, podcasts, social media accounts, and YouTube channels, fans can share their love of Scooby with others, and join in on the online interaction with other Scooby fans in whatever way they desire.
The Scooby fandom is also notable for being incredibly inclusive of all fans, for the most part. Regardless of how much or little a Scooby fan wants to be engaged, or in what ways they want to be involved, you can almost guarantee that they will be welcomed with open arms.
SpiderScooby, the webmaster of ScoobyFan.net, expresses this sentiment perfectly, saying that his favorite part about this fandom is “the positivity. Other fandoms can get so bogged down in negativity. While there has been some of that in the Scooby fandom over the years, the community tends to be more open and supportive of each other.”
While there is the occasional rude person, it is incredibly rare that anyone is ever bashed for their opinions within the fandom. All perspectives and opinions are almost always accepted and embraced, regardless of what you believe.
The online fandom is continuing to evolve in so many ways - for example, through some YouTube channels doing interviews and panels, a new Scooby Museum website created by Nikki Blake, and various Instagram pages doing live interviews with fans and people who have worked on Scooby. Through all of this evolution, the fandom continues to be incredibly inclusive and welcoming to everyone to share their love of Scooby with others.
“As long as there are fans who are understanding, accepting and, of course, respectful of others' opinions, the online Scooby-Doo fandom is a safe and welcoming place for everyone.” Scoob16, of the Scooby_News Instagram page, shares.
“We all have the same goal...to share our love of Scooby.” Nikki, of ScoobyAddicts, says.
The evolution of the online fandom since it first began in the 1990s has been incredible. Between websites, podcasts, social media, videos and much more, we have come so far and created so many different ways to express our love of Scooby over the years. I have no doubt that the fandom will keep changing over the years, and that new modes of creative expression will develop as the fandom continues to evolve. While some fandoms can be overly negative, standoffish, and even toxic, it’s a breath of fresh air to have such a welcoming, inclusive community where people can come and discuss Scooby-Doo with other fans without worry of being ostracized or ridiculed for their opinions. This is what makes the Scooby fandom truly one of the special online fandoms out there.
As an editorial note, I also want to mention that because of the gigantic amount of people within the fandom, it would be impossible to include every single site, podcast and social media account out there. This article was merely meant to provide a sampling of voices that represented each of these changes in the fandom close to the time when they first became a part of the fandom. If you are someone reading this who has a huge Scooby project and wish you could have been part of the article, I’m more than happy to update this article to include as many people as I can!