Warning: The following incorporates SPOILERS for the Velma pilot.Is HBO Max’s new Scooby Doo present Velma present appropriate for youths? The sequence courted controversy instantly after being introduced, each due to the producers’ intention to current a extra numerous ensemble of characters based mostly on the unique Mysteries Inc. workforce and due to its core idea of being an R-rated Scooby Doo. This raises questions relating to the exact content material of Velma and simply what makes it a present for mature audiences.
The Scooby Doo franchise isn’t any stranger to grownup humor. The first live-action Scooby Doo film was trimmed down from a script for an R-rated Scooby Doo film written by James Gunn. Despite many of the overt horror and sexual content material being eliminated, the completed movie nonetheless contained numerous nods to long-running theories relating to Velma being a lesbian or Shaggy being a stoner. Given that, it’s pure to take a position that Velma may not be fully unsuitable for youths, if many of the mature content material is delivered via innuendo.
Velma establishes itself as not appropriate for youths from the outset. The first scene of the Velma pilot takes place within the ladies’ locker room at Crystal Cove High, as Daphne Blake and her gang of imply ladies talk about how tv pilots at all times appear to function “more gratuitous sex and nudity than the rest of the series.” This units up a sudsy cat combat and the invention of certainly one of their classmates, whose mind was scooped out of her head. Between the naked buttocks, grotesque corpse and frank speak about intercourse, Velma lives as much as its R-rating and is clearly not meant for a similar viewers as Scooby Doo.
Thankfully, the remainder of the Velma pilot proves the sequence has greater plans than merely being Scooby Doo with intercourse jokes, blood and curse phrases. One main subplot facilities upon Velma’s compulsion to unravel mysteries and the hallucinatory panic assaults she suffers every time she’s confronted with a thriller to unravel, following the disappearance of her mom. These sequences are shockingly intense and stuffed with horrific imagery. They are additionally notably not performed for laughs, regardless of Velma‘s largely comedic tone. This marks Velma as a really mature sequence.
Another approach through which Velma asserts itself as not being appropriate for youths is by referencing reveals children are unlikely to have seen. While based mostly on Scooby Doo, the Velma present makes use of the tropes of the traditional cartoon to parody darkish reboots of traditional kids’s franchises, like Riverdale or The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. This good humor is prone to go over children’ heads, however dad and mom usually tend to fear about Velma displaying Daphne having a shower than they’re about their kids being uncovered to satire.