Warning: The following comprises SPOILERS for the Velma pilot.HBO Max’s R-rated Scooby-Doo spinoff Velma debunks the concept Shaggy makes a behavior of utilizing medication. This is stunning, provided that the character has been the topic of jokes suggesting his ferocious urge for food and paranoia have been the results of in depth marijuana abuse since he first appeared in Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! in 1969. Velma reveals, nonetheless, that its model of Shaggy lives a drug-free way of life.
Velma has courted scandal because it was first introduced, with many decrying the present’s base idea of an R-rated Scooby-Doo as a nasty thought. Much of the controversy was primarily based across the producers’ resolution to make use of color-blind casting to diversify the basic Mysteries Inc. group, that includes a Black Shaggy and Asian Daphne, along with a South Asian Velma voiced by Mindy Kaling. The present additionally defies custom by presenting a extra pushed tackle Shaggy, who’s often portrayed as a laid-back hippie with few pursuits exterior of meals and avoiding monsters.
Velma’s Shaggy, in distinction to the unique, is extremely vocal about his dedication to keep away from utilizing medication on even essentially the most informal degree. An aspiring journalist who acts as editor-in-chief of the Crystal Cove High School newspaper, Velma‘s model of Norville “Shaggy” Rogers is proven to be investigating rumors of the native malt store being a entrance for drug sellers. This leads him to voice his deep hatred of unlawful medication to Velma, as they begin exploring the demise of their classmate Brenda, which Norville thinks is tied to his investigation.
The more than likely purpose that Velma’s Norville Rogers would not use medication is as a result of jokes about Shaggy being a ordinary marijuana smoker have been completed to demise in different Scooby-Doo parodies, and even made their manner into official Hanna-Barbera productions. Shaggy was arrested on suspicion of drug possession within the Adult Swim collection Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law, within the episode “Shaggy Busted.” Another joke teased Shaggy’s love of marijuana within the first live-action Scooby-Doo film, which James Gunn wrote, by having Shaggy fall in love with a woman named Mary Jane, which he famous was his favourite woman’s identify. Not coincidentally, Mary Jane is a typical slang time period for marijuana.
Good comedy is predicated upon stunning the viewers, and jokes about Shaggy’s drug-taking fame are exactly the type of factor most would count on to see in an grownup tackle the Scooby-Doo mythos. Given that, it is smart that Velma would make its model of Shaggy into an anti-drug crusader. Beyond being surprising and ironic, this additionally permits the present to keep away from unfavorable stereotyping by portraying a Black teenager as a drug person.