I can't believe today is the day! Scooby has been on the airwaves a full 50 years, and has aired a plethora of series. To celebrate the day, I want to give my definitive ranking of the all the series we've gotten in the past 50 years, from worst to best.
The Richie Rich / Scooby-Doo Show and The Scooby & Scrappy-Doo Puppy Hour are both tied the worst series, in my opinion. 7 minutes just isn't long enough for this series, and doesn't do it justice. We get sort of rushed comedy romps, and the mystery element is completely taken out the series. Don't get me wrong, on occasion I'll watch these and sort of enjoy them, but they're certainly not my go-to Scooby-Doo series and I don't watch them more than once every few years.
I don't even know if it's really fair to rank this series on the same level as other Scooby series, because it really just is another comedy-focused romp. It's nothing like classic Scooby, and while enjoyable, again, I wouldn't go to these as a "can't wait to watch" series. It's certainly cute, but not the best series by any stretch of the imagination.
The one thing I always tell people who haven't seen Shaggy & Scooby-Doo Get A Clue! is that it's a good, funny show, but if you're expecting the classic Scooby formula, it's going to be terrible. Fred, Velma and Daphne are gone, and the series exclusively focuses on Shaggy and Scooby trying to stop the evil Dr. Phibes from dominating the world. Dr. Phibes and his agents, especially Agent 2 are pretty funny. Two of the later episodes, "Super Scary Movie Night" and "Runaway Robi" were awesome, the former because of the horror elements and the latter because of the comedy. It's been easily seven years since I've seen this show though, so I'm not sure if it holds up anymore.
The Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo Show is next on the list. I don't think this series is too dissimilar from The Scooby-Doo Show, except for the fact that Scrappy's here. In all honesty, Scrappy's voice is annoying here and his personality is beyond overbearing, which makes this not quite as enjoyable for me to watch as some of the later Scrappy series.
I liked The New Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Show much more than the 7 minute ones, despite that they're only about 4 minutes longer. The addition of Daphne is what the show needed, in my opinion, and she provides a little grounding to an otherwise zany show. The mysteries coming back was also a great touch.
The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries is basically the exact same series and rationale as the above one, with the bonus of Fred and Velma appearing in a few episodes!
Though I know quite a few people don't enjoy A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, I really like it. It has a lot of quirky humor, and quite honestly I love shows that have their own distinct style to them. The monsters were pretty silly, as were the kid versions of the gang, but this was a really fun series regardless.
Some of you might be surprised by this, but I'm gonna place Scooby-Doo and Guess Who? here. It's also inadvertently a nice transition from the last, where I was talking about distinct style. From what we've seen so far, this show has no distinct style. It's purely basing itself on nostalgia, and while some episodes are entertaining, the show doesn't seem to have gathered itself much of an identity beyond just taking elements from old shows and playing on people's nostalgia.
The Scooby-Doo Show was a cool series which had some genuinely dark plots, particularly in season 2. The contrast here is nice between the guest stars in The New Scooby-Doo Movies. I also liked us getting to know the gang's families more here, and of course, Scooby-Dum and Scooby-Dee!
What's New, Scooby-Doo? gives us an update on the classic series we all fell in love with, but with its own unique identity unlike Guess Who. The monsters were also some of the coolest we've seen in a long time, compared to the preceding A Pup Named Scooby-Doo.
The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo was hands down the best Scrappy series, and I'm sure many of you are surprised how high I'm putting this one (I'll probably be surprised when re-reading this article in a year, haha). I think though this show had a bit of an identity crisis, the mix of comedy and horror certainly made for an interesting, unique and quirky series that was enjoyable. The premise is also awesome, particularly in contrast to the ghosts always being fake previously. Some of the 13 ghosts' designs were genuinely pretty creepy as well!
Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! gets such a bad rep because of the animation, but the clever and absurdist humor in here is what brings this so high for me. The writing is just all-around amazing, and it's hard not to love this series once you give it a chance.
Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated's overarching plot, cleverly placed Easter eggs, and more dark/mature tone is what makes this series rise up to the top 3 for me. Plainly stated, it's an awesome series that does everything (besides the relationship drama) amazingly and is a must-watch for any Scooby fan.
Call me crazy, but I have some serious nostalgia around The New Scooby-Doo Movies. I grew up watching reruns of this series, and I liked all the guest stars and the very fluid tone to this show. I'm sure this is nostalgia talking, but this is my second favorite series of the franchise.
Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? is the series that started it all, and we're still getting new series based on this 50 years later...what more needs to be said haha?
I hope you enjoyed this article, and happy 50 years to Scooby! I'd be interested to know if people agree with this ranking, so let me know in the comments if you have an opinion.
If anyone's doing anything super awesome to celebrate, let us know in the comments below! :)
9/13/2019 11:44:53 am
You sure put the work in for the anniversary!
9/13/2019 12:47:54 pm
Thank you!!! More fan spotlights to come even though the anniversary is done after today, and we have a bunch of really good ones coming up!
9/13/2019 10:19:11 pm
I really had to think about this. Pretty much everything below the top 6 are versions of Scooby I'm only a fan of because they're Scooby. Scooby takes "meh" cartoon stuff and makes it a bit magical by his presence. The top 6 just rock though.
9/14/2019 10:42:52 am
I don't mind at all. I agree with all your rankings, though did you hate Don Messick's Scrappy voice. As Messick voiced him in Puppy Hour and I thought it was far better than the original series.
9/14/2019 11:28:02 am
Messick's Scrappy is probably less irritating but not enough that I'm opening a Scrappy fan site any time soon. I get that some folks really love Scrappy and that's great and that opinion is at least as valid as mine. Fact is, I fall on the other side of that fence and while it doesn't stop me from enjoying the Scrappy included shows, I will always prefer Scooby-Doo when he's Scrappy free.
9/14/2019 03:25:24 pm
Agreed, Scrappy is nowhere near my favorite character, but towards the end of his appearances (in the shows Daphne was in and the 80s films) I sort of enjoyed him. At least far more than the irritating Lennie Weinrib voice he had in 1979-1980.
9/13/2019 12:56:18 pm
I agree with your list on the most part. 45 mins is about right for the correct story. I wish that some of these direct to dvd films would sometimes be 45 mins because they tend to run out of steam after he half way mark. The new Scooby doo movies is a fantastic series.
9/13/2019 02:15:47 pm
Agreed, some of the more recent DTVs (Phantosaur especially comes to mind) seem to just drop off a cliff after the 45 min mark. That's so cool about the full moon thing, didn't even think of that! And very cool choices for your marathon. I'm watching the first eps of Where Are You (1-9) then Mystery Begins and the new Guess Who ep with Kenan Thompson.
9/13/2019 01:49:12 pm
It started as expected but as I went through I started to see more and more surprises. Anyway here's my list:
9/13/2019 02:14:10 pm
Yeah, as I said in the post I'll probably be surprised at myself for ranking 13 Ghosts so high in a year or so haha. I'm surprised you put Pup below 2 of the Scrappys, but then again you could probably say the same about some of my answers haha.
9/13/2019 02:36:07 pm
It was a tough one, but pup lost a lot of points for just being to overly simplified and seemed to be directed at kids almost of pre-school age. Fred was also quite annoying and idiotic in that series. it had its good points but when you knew who the villain was after 2 minutes, it quickly lost its charm. As for 13 ghosts that was quite a surprise.
9/14/2019 10:41:06 am
I just finished watching/rediscovering 13 Ghosts for the anniversary so I'm sure it's a bit artificially inflated here. Makes sense about Pup, though I think it had its charm IMO.
9/13/2019 02:50:04 pm
I'm going by the Wikipedia list of Scooby shows, but I won't include the Laff-A-Lympics, cuz it's more of a HB crossover show than a Scooby show.
9/13/2019 02:54:53 pm
I meant the Scooby franchise in general is subjective, and keep in mind.
9/14/2019 10:47:15 am
I'm not horribly surprised by anything on your list besides SDMI being so low, but I know that series wasn't for everyone. The romance was super annoying IMO.
Scooby dooby Doo
9/13/2019 03:41:27 pm
My favorites are:
9/14/2019 10:43:34 am
Those three are definitely classics!
Thomas Allen Holste
9/13/2019 06:20:45 pm
Great list! I'm much too tired to make a list of my own today, but since it's the official day, I had to stop by and say: Happy 50th birthday, Scooby-Doo!! :D
9/14/2019 10:39:30 am
Thanks! Happy 50th Scooby!
9/14/2019 10:03:10 am
Also, I wrote a little blog post about the show's 50 anniversary, if I may humbly share it with the group:
9/14/2019 10:46:24 am
Nice post! I commented on it :)
9/22/2019 09:38:52 am
I know im a little late, but it really isn't too late to get my opinions
9/22/2019 09:40:27 am
14 Puppy hour. sorry some of my answers didn't get saved so I will add the final couple, I remember this show being about crookes and criminals and not actual monsters, and overtime it got boring for me.
9/22/2019 03:29:23 pm
Great rankings, IkeDaKil! I agree with your reasonings for all of them even if my order is slightly different.
12/17/2020 06:26:43 am
Going back to this post over a year later. There's been a few changes in my ranking, especially the middle section, but none of the shows have jumped up or down more than 2 places since then.
12/17/2020 10:30:25 am
So fun to see you came back to this article! :) I'd honestly say my rankings are the same as last year. For me, mainly the order of favorite episodes switch around, but favorite series stays pretty static.
12/17/2020 01:20:30 pm
I do wonder though, why is TSDS only #5 on your list? It rivals WAY so much and they're pretty much on par, yet not so close in the ranking.
12/17/2020 08:56:55 pm
Honestly, while I love The Scooby-Doo Show, Where Are You (and The New Scooby-Doo Movies) will always be the classic to me. SDMI and BCSD get third and fourth place, respectively on the list because they both tried something unique and experimented with the formula in a way I really enjoyed. That's not to say The Scooby-Doo Show is a rehash to me, I just think nostalgia raised Where Are You and The New Scooby-Doo Movies to the level they were because those were the first Scooby things I was introduced to as a kid.
12/18/2020 12:17:30 am
I have nostalgia for a lot of Scooby shows, from the beginning to pretty much almost all the way up to WNSD. But TSDS just seems to click best for me, it's the stuff my mind most often goes to when I think about Scooby, and the stuff I most often wanna rewatch.
12/24/2020 06:05:10 am
I need to add something to my re-ranking. 1983-1984 is the hardest one to rank for me. It's two seasons with different names, they're more similar to each other than not, but you could still consider them two separate shows. But that's not the hard part. The hard part is that the 1983 season, TNS&SDS, on its own would be just below SD&SD (the first series), while the 1984 season, TNSDMy, on its own would be just above TNSDMo. So trying to weigh those two seasons within a ranking of the shows is hard. It's the biggest quality gap between seasons within any Scooby series (imo), even though I like both of them, but to clearly different degrees. When you have series like TSDS where each season is overall very close in quality to the other two seasons, it's much easier to weigh and rank.
12/24/2020 09:50:02 am
Yeah, I totally agree there. I rewatched The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries last holiday season, and there's a lot of varying quality within that show. Three of the episodes in that show are some of the best Scrappy episodes ever, but you also get weird and/or crappy ones like "The Bee Team," "Mission Un-Doo-able" (though this one's an unpopular opinion if the reviews on ScoobyAddicts are anything to go by) and "The Dooby Dooby Doo Ado." It's super tough to rank these.
12/24/2020 10:14:25 am
There's some weird and bland 11 minute eps in TNSDMy, but most of them are good, probably overall better than in TNS&SDS. And then you have the clearly best stuff in this show – the 23 minute eps with Fred and/or Velma; all 6 of these eps are great, 3 of them in the top 50 best Scooby episodes.
12/25/2020 10:27:11 am
Just to make sure we're talking about the same three episodes, the three I'm talking about are "Happy Birthday, Scooby-Doo," "A Halloween Hassle at Dracula's Castle" and "The Nutcracker Scoob." You're referring to the same ones...I hope? Haha
4/24/2021 02:09:05 am
Really interesting ranking! I read a few others toay, and almost all of them put Mystery Incorporated in the bottom 3 or 5 and just seeing that nearly gave me hives lol. I haven;t watched all the shows yet, but if I were to rank the ones I've seen in full, it's probably this:
4/24/2021 10:39:10 am
I definitely agree with the reasoning for your rankings even if I put them in a slightly different order! It's unfortunate that SDMI gets a lot of hate, when IMO the only bad part was the whole Velma/Shaggy relationship, which was painful to watch. Other than that, I think it was one of the most amazing Scooby series of all time!
4/24/2021 12:03:39 pm
It really is! Though I've actually never seen hate for it until reading those rankings. Everywhere else I've seen discussion of it, people love it. So hopefully the hate isn't widespread.
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