WARNING: The image at the top of this post may be NSFW due to violence and implied nudity.
According to Deadline, at the Warner Brothers Discovery Upfront today, our first look at Velma was revealed in the image above. The image shows the design for Velma, and demonstrates that the series may be a bit graphic. The concept of the series has received considerable backlash online due to how much it differs from the previous library of Scooby-Doo media. However, Mindy Kaling, the series creator and executive producer, was upfront those criticizing the show at the upfront today.
“Hopefully you noticed my Velma is South Asian. If people freak out about that, I don’t care.” Mindy says.
Mindy had also previously addressed those criticizing the show in her appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers.
"When it was announced that I was going to do the voice of Velma, people were very supportive and happy on Twitter. And so I felt great,” Mindy informed. “Then it was announced a month ago that the Velma character would be reimagined as South Asian. And people were not happy. There was a lot of, like, ‘So not Velma!’ Those kind of tweets. ‘Not the classic Velma that I’m always thinking about.'”
This encouraged Mindy to be careful when taking on the role of the classic character she will be voicing, and ensure she was not portraying Velma with any stereotypes of how people of Asian descent are supposed to be "nerdy." but she also was critical of people challenging Velma's race when they know little about the show. She argues that if a talking dog can solve mysteries, then Velma can be brown.
There's still no date announced for this origin story for Velma, but the fact that it was shown at the Warner Brothers Discovery Upfront potentially hints it may be coming within the next year or so.
5/18/2022 01:09:59 pm
I'm just gonna nope out of this one... not into gore in my children's cartoons sorry.
5/18/2022 03:20:42 pm
Fair enough. I'm surprised this is the first image they chose to release, honestly. Certainly a bold statement to first release a character design with them standing over a corpse lol.
5/18/2022 05:55:42 pm
Short version, I don't think this was released cause it makes it look good, considering this was likely announced pre merger and is kinda being shoved out after, I wouldn't be surprised if this was approved by someone who's no longer there and was far enough along they couldn't kill it till it was already at least a season in
5/18/2022 09:23:47 pm
That certainly could be, I have no idea. It will be interesting to see if this lasts more than a season, but I doubt it will.
5/18/2022 01:31:45 pm
Velma is nowhere near as popular as Shaggy or Scooby, you remove her from the gang, you drastically alter her race, you change her usual tone to go after the Rick & Morty crowd and you inject blood and guts like its its a french eclair. Adult Swim parodies had more respect than HBO. At any rate I am gonna pass on this series.
5/18/2022 03:21:44 pm
Fair enough. I will give it a shot and most likely review the first episode for the blog.
5/19/2022 12:41:53 am
The french eclair got me ngl lol
5/18/2022 01:34:36 pm
Why call her Velma, then? Just make her a new character. If creators really wanted to be bold, they'd stop cashing in on existing franchise names and let their vision stand on its own merits.
5/18/2022 02:29:01 pm
I am worried that the show may be edgy for the sake of being inappropriate, but from this image we still can’t tell what the actual tone of this show will be. I have zero problem with them changing Velma’s race, the skin tone and ethnicity are not important to the core components that people know about the character (or at least shouldn’t be). I’ve always wanted to see a Scooby murder mystery show, and this seems to be presenting just that! There’s 50 years worth of other Scooby, no reason for anyone not interested in this to be mad that it exists I don’t think.
5/18/2022 02:50:55 pm
But this really isn't a a Scooby murder mystery show, since we know Scooby will not appear in it will just focus on the gang and teenagers.
5/18/2022 03:24:29 pm
I'm also a little worried about that given this is the first image they chose to release for the show, as I'm not really a fan of shows like 'Family Guy' given they often take things a step too far. I also have no issue with them changing Velma's race and I agree with your point about how ethnicity/skin tone aren't necessarily altering the core components of a character. I'm definitely checking out the show and it will be interesting to see a murder mystery show with Velma, I just hope that it being an "adult show" doesn't mean it's going to be overly inappropriate just for the sake of being raunchy.
5/20/2022 08:15:26 am
I hate to disagree with you WildWind but.... I have been watching Family Guy for as long as I can remember and I still enjoy it to this very day even in the shows newer seasons.
5/20/2022 02:03:24 pm
No worries, glad to hear you enjoy Family Guy!
5/18/2022 03:20:24 pm
WB veteran Ernie Altbacker, who worked on Scooby Doo And WWE: Curse Of The Speed Demon, took part in a podcast interview about the movie. Here is a link for it enjoy.
5/18/2022 03:25:02 pm
Thanks for the the link!
5/18/2022 03:35:13 pm
I have some reservations. This is definitely trying to be bold, and presumably there's a purpose to this. Hopefully, it's not just doing it for the sake of it. I find it interesting though, that not even Birdgirl is this bold (so far).
5/18/2022 04:29:41 pm
I also hope that there's a purpose to the boldness rather than "let's be as edgy and inappropriate as we can!"
5/18/2022 05:10:38 pm
Yeah, I meant to say it's out of context.
5/18/2022 09:24:35 pm
Okay, gotcha. Speaking of which, I should have said "It would be interesting if it was," not "if you was."
5/18/2022 04:09:27 pm
Yeah, I'm not too sure about this one.
5/18/2022 04:38:20 pm
I think it's more than fair to be skeptical.
5/18/2022 05:09:47 pm
I think the reason why Hayley/Velma's race has never been issue, because she basically blended in. I couldn't exactly look at her Velma and say "Oh, it's Asian Velma." Like with Sarah Jeffrey's Daphne, you can't not see her darker skin.
5/18/2022 09:31:55 pm
That's a great point. Both of them not only blended in, but their races weren't ever a point of discussion, while this series seems like it will be making a bigger deal out of it. Personally, that's not a turnoff for me but I'll be interested to see how they handle discussing her racial identity in the show.
5/18/2022 05:40:44 pm
This looks.... different I guess to me so far from this image alone it looks like it's going all out with the adult stuff I don't know how I feel about that I just hope that they don't have sex and gore in it for the sake of having it in. I wonder what the rest of the gang(minus Scooby :( ) are going to look like in this.
5/18/2022 09:28:09 pm
Yep, seems that way. I'm also hoping that they don't go wildly inappropriate just for the sake of being edgy. That's what I'm most worried about for the series, though I'm still going to give it a chance. I'm wondering if the nude redhead is Daphne, but if not, I'm also interested to see what her (and Shaggy and Fred) will look like.
5/18/2022 07:08:08 pm
I will definitely check out this series. It is already drastically different from the norm in this franchise just in that still image. That is what I want, a different experience.
5/18/2022 09:30:12 pm
It's really interesting to see all the different perspectives in this comment thread! I'm also remaining open-minded and trying to be excited for the series. Like I've mentioned in a couple comments above, the one thing that I wouldn't want is to have it be edgy for the sake of being edgy. I've never particularly been a fan of shows like that, but that's just my personal preference. It definitely seems this show is going for the "go big or go home" mentality given the first image they chose to reveal, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the quality plays out.
5/18/2022 10:03:15 pm
I saw the image earlier today. A few thoughts:
5/19/2022 02:57:47 am
I agree yeah it's different but it's like in it's own universe so they change it if they want weather or not people like it.
5/19/2022 09:30:07 am
A. I completely agree with you. Shows are created in alternate universes from the main canon all the time, so just because it relates to Velma's race isn't a problem.
5/19/2022 01:01:56 am
That's not the kind of image I expected them to release first lol. I have no idea what to make of this show right now.
5/19/2022 09:31:02 am
I'm a bit surprised they chose to release this image first too. It was definitely a bold choice of them to do this. I'm still planning to give it a chance, even if I also am a bit uncertain now about what this show will be like.
5/19/2022 04:26:42 am
When I first this I thought this could be interesting, then, when I looked at it again I was like wait, is that supposed to be Velma? Oh hell no. One of my biggest pet hates is re-imagining classic characters to fit modern social norms. For me its just lazy and cowardly. The studio simply wants to look like its ethnically diverse without taking any risks, hoping the name of a big hit slapped on a character that is clearly not them does the job.
5/19/2022 05:37:40 am
Jellystone turned a bunch of male characters into females, because Hanna-Barbera didn't create enough females, but then the people of Jellystone couldn't be bothered to put to good use the female characters Hanna-Barbera did create.
5/19/2022 10:57:44 am
I guess personally, I don't think we know enough about Velma's character yet to know if her character is going to be a one-dimensional racial stereotype. I'm hoping that it will allow them to explore a different side of Velma's character, although I'm not sure we have enough information of how the race change will actually play out in the show. I'm definitely not saying either of you are wrong, I'm just not sure we have enough information about the show to definitively say the studio is trying to "look like its ethnically diverse without taking any risks." I guess I'm just not sure how big of a factor race will play in the series, and if it will be explored in a way that feels natural and allows Velma to be a three-dimensional character that isn't necessarily completely defined by her race. I do understand and respect both of your opinions and wouldn't say I disagree, I guess I'm just waiting for more information before I make any judgement.
5/19/2022 11:13:24 am
Agreed, I'll withhold complete judgement until it comes out but these first impressions are not great and it isn't good when you want a show to fail before you even watch it, especially a cartoon you have loved for all your life.
5/19/2022 04:47:56 pm
Yeah, I agree the first impressions are a bit worrisome, although I'm remaining open minded. Honestly, what I think is probably going to happen is 95% of the fandom is going to hate it. There probably will be a niche group that enjoys it, but it won't last more than a season. I guess personally, I don't really care if this show succeeds or fails. Regardless of the quality, there's just no way they're going to say "WOW, this did so incredible that we're now going to change the entire franchise to be like this!" For the past 50+ years, the target audience for this has been young audiences and there's no scenario where they're going to ditch the normal Scooby DTVs/content and say "Scooby's rated R now, find another show to watch kids!!!"
5/21/2022 04:31:37 am
Good point. I suppose I should give them credit for at least trying something different rather than trying to reuse the nostalgia value for the hundreth time.
5/19/2022 08:31:34 am
Warner Brothers Discovery needs help
5/19/2022 10:56:33 am
Here's a tweet from Mindy Kaling herself about Velma
5/19/2022 10:58:12 am
Thank you, I actually just posted about that a few minutes ago!
5/19/2022 05:58:41 pm
When I first heard about a Velma spinoff, I was a little skeptical because I wasn't entirely sure how it was gonna go. When this new image was released, I was like "WTF?!" I did NOT see this coming in a million years, I didn't even think this was going to be an adult show. While I am a little disturbed by this, I'm not gonna judge it right away until we get a proper trailer for the show, which shouldn't be too far away, and who knows, it may end up like the Harley Quinn show, which I think is one of the best DC shows.
5/20/2022 02:06:53 pm
I was a bit surprised by the choice of image as well, but I wasn't turned off by it and I don't plan to judge the show until the first episode is out. I hope we get a trailer soon! I haven't personally seen the Harley Quinn show, but I've seen a lot of people thinking it will be like that, so it will be interesting to see if that's true.
5/20/2022 08:30:49 am
Call me crazy but... looking at the character designs that are seen in this early image... it kinda looks oddly similar to Be Cool, Scooby-Doo's art style only it is a more improved version of it.
5/20/2022 02:04:28 pm
Yeah, the animation reminded me of Be Cool too. It's interesting, JCB (the head writer) just posted a tweet about how people should give it a chance, and reminding them how a lot of people didn't give Be Cool a chance because of the different animation.
5/22/2022 03:43:37 am
I kinda wished they picked a different image as the First Look.
5/22/2022 03:49:37 am
But I definitely am intrigued by it and will watch the first episode when it releases. I will admit that I’m not into gory stuff. I hope the show doesn’t really abuse the whole “adult animation” thing by being too violent and gory for no reason but to push that Mature rating.
5/22/2022 04:02:10 am
Ok I just read the Mindy Tweet about Concerns about the Velma lol
5/23/2022 10:31:33 pm
I'm not really into gory stuff either, but I think it's possible this image was out of the context of the show. I'm also a little worried about it being edgy just for the sake of being inappropriate, since I don't think I'd enjoy the show if it took that direction, but I'm keeping an open mind and am looking forward to the first episode.
5/23/2022 10:49:34 pm
I feel the same way. If it do become too much for me then I might lose interest in it, but I don’t know.
5/23/2022 10:54:18 pm
Unless it got SUPER raunchy, like to Family Guy levels where they're actively making outrageously offensive and/or disgusting jokes, I probably wouldn't stop watching it. I'm very much a completist when it comes to media I love, so it has to be like REALLY bad for me not to watch it haha.
5/24/2022 01:25:59 am
I hope it NEVER get to that level. I really want to support this show by watching all the episodes!
5/26/2022 09:09:01 am
Me too! :)
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~ WildwindVampire ~