Scooby-Doo! The Sword and the Scoob
Cartoon violence, monster imagery in tired Scooby mystery.
Scooby-Doo! The Sword and the Scoob
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Scooby-Doo! The Sword and the Scoob is a 2021 animated feature in which Scooby and the gang fly to England and encounter King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Expect some cartoon violence and monster imagery. The violence in this one is more of the medieval variety, as characters face off against dragons, wizards who throw exploding orbs, and fight with swords, bows and arrows, spikes, punches, and kicks. Scooby and the gang also must venture down a long corridor to rescue Shaggy, a corridor filled with traps that set off swinging axes and arrows. After offering Shaggy a job in Waste Management, King Arthur makes reference to "a few ripe buckets of..." before he's cut off. Some bodily function humor, such as Merlin burping the alphabet. The best thing about this movie is that Daphne is given a chance to be heroic for a change, and takes on the Knights of the Round Table in a variety of contests, and bests them all.
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What's the Story?
In SCOOBY-DOO! THE SWORD AND THE SCOOB, Scooby and the gang have just cracked another mystery, this one involving a "monster" attacking a passenger plane. In the process of solving the mystery, Velma got a DNA test of the villain, but also obtained DNA results for her fellow sleuths. While looking his test results over, Shaggy (Matthew Lillard) sees that his ancestral roots are in a small village in England. Velma recognizes the name of the village as the place rumored to be where Camelot used to be. In exchange for solving the mystery, the CEO of the airline offers the gang free tickets to England, a proposal they happily accept. However, once they arrive in the village, they soon see that something is amiss. Shaggy pulls Excalibur out of the rock to cut cheese, and his surname alarms the villagers, as they believe that Shaggy is, technically, the rightful owner of the village and the surrounding land. Before this issue can be resolved, Merlin and Morgan LaFay appear, and the gang find themselves transported through time to the Dark Ages. They soon meet the smug King Arthur (Jason Isaacs), and soon Daphne (Grey Griffin) must face off against all of the Knights of the Round Table in a variety of medieval challenges in order to determine who is the rightful ruler of Camelot -- King Arthur, or Shaggy. As they face off against wizardry, dangerous traps, and fire-breathing dragons, the kids must find a way to restore King Arthur to goodness, stop Morgan LaFay, and get back to the present time.
Is It Any Good?
It's almost impressive to create a Scooby mystery that's more preposterous than the rest, and Scooby-Doo! The Sword and the Scoob manages to do just that. One would have to go back to the days when Scooby and the gang were hanging out with the guys in Kiss to find anything as ridiculous as this movie. The whole thing reeks of laziness, something churned out and thrown together, and it's not hard to pick up on the fact that the creators of this movie seem to know this. While this is Scooby, Shaggy, and the others solving a mystery in the days of King Arthur, everything about the story is a little too convenient. The creators of this are in on the joke, and they really, really want you to be in on the joke as well, even if the jokes revolving around the many well-known Scooby-Doo tropes aren't especially funny by this point.
The best thing that can be said about this is that Daphne is given the chance to be heroic. She takes on the Knights of the Round Table in sword fights, bow and arrow contests, and jousting, among other battles she wouldn't have been allowed to fight not that long ago, due to outdated gender roles and all. It's the only stand-out aspect to what's otherwise a stock, paint-by-numbers Scooby mystery. Even the animation looks cheap. The explanations at the end for "what really happened" defy even the basic logic of the Scooby-Doo universe, and there's a glibness to it that comes across as insulting to the audience. Overall, it's a slapdash movie that's an okay choice for a rainy day, but families are better off checking out the classic TV series.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about cartoon violence in Scooby-Doo! The Sword and the Scoob. How does the violence compare to other Scooby-Doo movies and TV episodes going back to the 1970s?
Typically, if Fred isn't the hero, Velma uses her intelligence, or Shaggy and Scooby stumble into solving the mystery, but in this movie, Daphne emerges as a strong female heroine. How is Daphne usually portrayed? How is this different?
Why do you think there's an enduring appeal for Scooby-Doo decades after it was first released?
- On DVD or streaming: February 23, 2021
- Cast: Matthew Lillard, Grey Griffin, Jason Isaacs
- Director: Maxwell Atoms
- Studio: Warner Bros. Animation
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Topics: Princesses, Fairies, Mermaids, and More, Cats, Dogs, and Mice, Great Girl Role Models, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Run time: 76 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Last updated: October 8, 2022
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