Comic review: “Scooby-Doo Team-Up” volume 8

Scooby-Doo Team-Up, volume 8: It’s Scooby Time

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: various (see below)

It’s time to look at the final trade paperback volume of the now-ended series “Scooby-Doo Team-Up.” The series features the Mystery Inc. gang teaming up with various DC Comics and Hanna-Barbera characters.

(SPOILERS below.)

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #44 (Dick Dastardly and Muttley)

Scooby-Doo Team-Up #44
“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #44. Art by Scott Jeralds.

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Scott Jeralds

Plot: Dick Dastardly, desperate to catch Yankee Doodle Pigeon, hires the Mystery Inc. gang by making up a story about a “ghost pigeon.”

As usual, the Hanna-Barbera team-ups are zanier than the DC team-ups. Dick, Muttley, and the rest of the Vulture Squadron (consisting of: Zilly, who’s as cowardly as Shaggy; and Klunk, a mechanical genius who speaks in nonsensical noises) are in their usual form here. There’s also several jokes about, and an explanation for, the Vulture Squadron’s existence (and anachronistic biplanes).

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #45 (Big Barda, Mister Miracle, and the New Gods)

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Dario Brizuela

Plot: The gang travel to Apokolips with Mister Miracle to rescue Big Barda, Velma, and Daphne.

If there’s a place Shaggy and Scooby’s fears are justifiable, Apokolips is certainly the one. Also, the fact there’s now a Scooby-Doo story where the Mystery Inc. gang visit Darkseid’s stomping grounds is certainly of note. (That said, there’s no scene with Darkseid telling his minions “the semi-articulate canine and cowardly youth must not leave here alive.”)

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #46 (Black Lightning)

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Dario Brizuela

Plot: The gang visit Jefferson Pierce’s high school in Metropolis, where they end up helping his alter-ego Black Lightning deal with a threat to the school.

We learn that the gang’s incarnation in this series finished school awhile ago, though they’re taking online classes.

Despite the currently airing “Black Lightning” TV show, there’s no clear references to it in this story. That said, there is a mention about Black Lightning’s kids also being superheroes.

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #47 (Magilla Gorilla)

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Walter Carzon

Plot: The Scooby-Doo gang stop by Peebles’ Pet Shop, and end up rescuing Magilla Gorilla from a mad scientist’s lair.

Again, another zany Hanna-Barbera adventure. Magilla’s memorable and catchy theme song gets referenced at a few points. Also, Mr. Peebles sells Scooby Snacks?

Fortunately, things end OK (or at least maintain the status quo) for all involved. A contrast to the outcome of the Magilla Gorilla/Mystery Inc. meeting in the TV series “Scooby-Doo and Guess Who?”

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #48 (The Flash’s Rogues)

Scooby-Doo Team-Up #48
“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #48. Art by Dario Brizuela.

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Dario Brizuela

Plot: The Flash’s Rogues lure the Mystery Inc. gang to Central City, needing their help to deal with the ghost of the deceased Flash foe the Top.

Another Flash-tied story in this series. The Rogues are in their traditional Silver Age form here; we even get that Silver/Bronze Age Central City landmark, the Flash Museum.

This story also seems to answer who the Flash is in “Scooby-Doo Team-Up” (it’s Barry).

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #49 (Metamorpho)

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Dario Brizuela

Plot: Metamorpho and Simon Stagg need the gang’s help to combat a mysterious new monster.

The story has a reference to the classic Silver Age story “Metamorpho Says No!” (where he turns down membership in the JLA).

“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #50 (Batman and Robin, various “Scooby-Doo” incarnations)

Scooby-Doo Team-Up #50
“Scooby-Doo Team-Up” #50. Art by Scott Jeralds.

Written by: Sholly Fisch; art by: Scott Jeralds

Plot: Scooby-Mite and Bat-Mite (from early on in the series) make a return visit, and decide to bring together multiple versions of the Scooby-Doo gang.

While it’s the final issue in the series, this one’s also quite a finale. The gang gets to meet other versions of the Scooby-Doo franchise:

  • “THe 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo”
  • “A Pup Named Scooby-Doo”
  • “Shaggy and Scooby-Doo Get a Clue”
  • “Mystery, Incorporated”
  • “Be Cool, Scooby-Doo”
  • The “Scooby Apocalypse” comic
  • The live-action movies

Interestingly, “our” Scooby gang is treated as a separate universe from the ones above. I always assumed that with few exceptions (“Mystery Incorporated,” the live-action movies, “Be Cool,” etc.), most Scooby-Doo versions are set in the same universe, regardless of the differences in tone. (Similar to how the Batman that wore a rainbow costume in the late 50s is canonically the same one that fought Killer Croc in the 80s.)

Of course, “our” Scooby-Doo gang seem to be the “default” versions thought of by the general public: that is, the versions seen in “Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?,” “The New Scooby-Doo Movies,” and “The Scooby-Doo Show.” Which might explain why they didn’t recognize these other Mystery Inc. versions, or their supporting casts. (In turn, “13 Ghosts” Daphne doesn’t recognize Fred, despite the 80s “Scooby-Doo” spin-offs featuring Fred as an occasional guest star.) Said supporting cast members include Vincent Van Ghoul (“13 Ghosts”), Robi the robot (“Get a Clue”), the Hex Girls (several direct-to-video movies), and… Scrappy-Doo!

Yes, Scrappy finally makes his first speaking appearance in a Scooby-Doo story (not counting “Scooby Apocalypse”) in years. From my research, this is the regular version of Scrappy’s first appearance in a Scooby-Doo comic since the final issue of DC’s “Cartoon Network Presents” in 1999. (Before that, Scrappy appeared in the short-lived Archie Comics run of “Scooby-Doo” in the mid-90s.) That said, Scrappy’s given the usual “respect” he’s received in modern “Scooby-Doo” references. I do wonder why Warner Bros. haven’t considered trying to revamp/revive Scrappy. They’ve done so to other elements of the Scooby-Doo franchise in some very extreme ways (see “Mystery, Incorporated” and “Scooby Apocalypse), so why not Scrappy? Granted, I’m probably the one person online who doesn’t dislike Scrappy.

Finally, I note that while “Scooby-Doo Team-Up” is set on a post-Crisis-style Earth (the JSA and JLA coexist, the Huntress is Helena Bertinelli and not Helena Wayne, etc.), the multiverse does exist. We briefly see a version of Earth-Prime (DC’s stand-in for the real world), plus several Elseworlds.

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