Scooby-Doo: Surf’s Up! Recap/Review Part 2
5 villians from the past come together with the sole purpose of destroying Mystery Inc!
Artwork by Joe Staton again, the first 5 stories in this volume are his so apologies if I get a wee bit repetitive.
I don’t think I have anything new to say about his art or his style as a whole, but being story specific, I do have one or two issues. The very first panel shows 5 villains, and their “costume” alter egos, from Mystery Inc’s past. Now, the “costumes” all appear to be original WAY monsters but none of these people were the wearers of those costume on that show.
A missed opportunity that would have been a nice nod for sure, small nit picky gripe.
Now my big problem with the art is a continuity issue that’s only partially Staton’s fault. The 5 humans we open with are all over the map from the first panel through the rest of the story, mostly due to colorist Paul Becton. We see 2 black guys, a green spiky haired Frankenstien’s monster looking dude, and 2 women. 3 panels later, on of the black guys is now a white dude and his gray mustache is now snowy
Later, on the 2 pages, his mustache goes dark again and his hair grows back. Also, the Frankensteiner turns into a white dude…shimysaywhatnow???
That aside, once again, Staton knows how to fill a panel. He only uses the dull single color background twice, and both have logical story reasons to exist so I don’t care one bit. He fully services the story, but more on that later.
Story: Revenge, Inc by Chris Duffy.
Fresh off of a vacation that obviously turned into a case, the Gang arrives home to Coolsville.
As they drive down their hometown streets, a man opens a door and calls for help, being the helpful folks they are, they rum to his aid and discover he only wants a photo of the famous mystery solvers.
With little warning, he snaps the pic and quickly disappears leaving the fivesome disoriented.
After a quick look around, not finding the man, they decide to go their seperate ways, Shag and Scoob head to the diner, Fred and Daph go to catch a movie, and Velma goes home to record the latest case. But right away, Velma starts taking notice of the weird things going on, a mysterious new sign carrying man in town and her case log is a Mystery Inc smear campaign.
Very soon the rest of the gang realizes something is amiss, Shaggy and Scooby are eating everything in sight but nothing can satiate their ever growing appetites, no matter where Fred and Daphne go everybody turns into a monster.
Velma, Daphne, and Fred (the latter 2 with a town full of monsters hot on their trail) meet up outside the diner before going inside to help the hungry duo. Inside they find the twosome depressed because no matter what or how much they eat they’re still not full.
Meanwhile, Fred starts barricading the door as the terrifying townsfolk start tearing their way in! Everything starts clicking into place for Velma and finally she solves the mystery with a hearty WAKE UP!!
I’ll admit it, I left a few details out of the summation just to make this party even sweeter. This here is one of the types of stories that made me love the old Scooby comic. It has all of the elements of classic Scooby with a slight twist, there’s no man in a mask here folks.
But what we do get, and I say this without hyperbole, is a masterfully crafted comic.
The little hints throughout, like the new man in town with the “Wake up! The end is near” sign and “Wake Up Little Suzy” playing on the radio, that aren’t super in your face yet are painfully obvious once the reveal is made.
Without the delicately simple way the art complements the script, never once being blatantly on the nose, this could have easily been solved in five pages and forgettable, and even laughably stupid, by the time Velma starts unraveling the dastardly plot on page 9. And this is coming from a dude that finds the concept of hypnotism to be both of those things.
Staton gets HUGE points for subtlety!
I always loved these stories that tried to look at the format through a new prism, more often than not it works.
So after Velma yells, the Gang wakes up still in the room with the camera. Shaggy and Fred wondering how they got back there, Velma explains they were in a shared hypnotic trance and her unconscious mind was sending her literal signs.
They find the villainous quintet celebrating a successful revenge plot of plunging Mystery Inc. into their worst nightmares, which leaves the gang with the perfect opportunity to screw with them.
Shag grabs the Hypno cam, bursts into the room posing as a photographer commemorating the gathering of gruesome ex-ghouls.
The cops come and the last panel shows the villains worst nightmare is to be constantly taunted by Rooby-Rooby-Roo!
Overall: Nothing else to say really, it’s a great story with Artwork that is perfectly supportive of it. No heavy handedness here.