A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie is intended to entertain rather than educate.
Characters use courage and teamwork to solve a mystery.
Positive Role Models
An actor who plays Santa hates Christmas and says the parade he's in makes him sick. The real Santa helps the gang out of trouble. Fabian Menkle is the nephew of a toy shop owner and plots to have his uncle removed as the boss. Fred cheerfully takes on the job of uncovering the mystery of the snowman.
No diversity in terms of ethnicity or race -- all characters are White. Some gender balance within the Mystery Gang.
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Violence & Scariness
A mildly scary sharp-toothed scarecrow shapeshifts into spiders and other monstrous forms. A car explodes during a scarecrow attack. Characters are frozen in ice. A monster is hit with a hammer and knocked out. Some slapstick.
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Products & Purchases
Story set in a struggling toy store. Part of the Scooby-Doo franchise, which includes TV, toys, and merchandise.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Scooby-Doo! Haunted Holidays is a Scooby-Doo mystery set at Christmas with scary monsters, moments of peril, and slapstick action. The central villain is a sharp-toothed, shapeshifting snowman (voiced by Fred Tatasciore) that could be scary for some younger viewers. A car explodes and some characters are frozen in ice. But no one comes to any serious harm. The first "Santa" in the movie is a grumpy actor who says he hates Christmas and that the parade he's in makes him "sick." This is balanced by the real Santa turning up later to merrily help the gang. The fact that there is both a real and fake Santa in the movie has the potential to confuse or provoke awkward questions. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Seasonal Scooby-Doo movies give the creative team behind the cartoons the chance to throw Scoob and the gang headfirst into the theme. Not holding back on the monster for Christmas, Scooby-Doo! Haunted Holidays features a fanged snowman that ranks among the most visually interesting of villains. The shapeshifting monster is grotesque in its distorted forms and delectably creepy as a giant spider. It's easy to appreciate artistically but young viewers might not appreciate its presence.
Less easy to appreciate is the first Santa we meet. He hates Christmas and the parade makes him sick. It's not made quite clear enough that he's an actor, so some explaining might be required for younger viewers, especially when the real Santa then turns up. All comes good in the end as the gang unmask the snowman and reveal who's behind it, in a plausible and satisfying way. Ending with Scooby-Doo as Santa in the actor's place in the toy store is a jolly way to end a short, solid holiday special for kids interested in mild scares.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.