Velma Trailer & Images Reveal Redesigned Scooby-Doo Mystery Inc Characters

A teaser and images released for the HBO Max series Velma shows the redesigned look for the Scooby-Doo Mystery, Incorporated characters. Velma Dinkley’s first on-screen appearance was as part of the mystery-centered 1969 Hanna-Barbera kids cartoon series Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, which introduced Velma as the most intelligent member of the Gang. Her character is usually seen in an orange turtleneck sweater and red shirt, along with a bob haircut and glasses, which she often loses. An essential component of the Gang’s mystery-solving capabilities, the brainy Velma was often considered underappreciated in the show’s history, though the character has enjoyed a pop culture resurgence.

The Velma love is still going strong, with an HBO Max animated spin-off centered on the character announced in February 2021. With The Office writer and star Mindy Kaling voicing the character as well as helming the series, the titular character will be of South Asian descent in the new show. An origin story, the Kaling-produced series will be bringing some major changes to the formula of the franchise due to its R-rating, lack of Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Machine, and character redesigns. A first look at Velma released in May revealed that the series will be leaning into the nudity and gore that’s possible with the new direction for the franchise.

HBO Max has now released a teaser for the series, featuring more violence and frights as well as displaying Kaling’s iteration of Velma in action. The tongue-in-cheek teaser features Velma pacing in her dark room, crafting an email on her phone about frustrations over the changes HBO Max is making to an animated character, clearly anticipating the complaints that parts of the Scooby-Doo fan base could have about the new show. THR has also offered a look at the other characters in the gang, showing an overhaul of the classic animated characters with character posters that list the voice actors’ names.

Why Shaggy, Velma & Daphne Look Different In New Scooby Show

Shaggy, Fred, Daphne, and Velma herself have clear similarities to their classic counterparts, including the same iconic outfits, similar hairstyles, and personalities. The changes in the characters come down to race, due to the move to have the Velma animated characters reflect the identities of their voice actors. The new designs likely won’t have too much bearing on the overall changes Velma will make to the Scooby-Doo franchise, which will come mainly from the “no dog, no van” setup and R-rating. However, having the animated characters semi-accurately represent their voice actors could open the door for interesting new storylines that reveal more about the characters’ backstories, offering an authentic direction forward that adds an engaging spin to an old formula.

The adult animated show is taking a big risk, making changes to a beloved franchise with a long history and established fan base, which the new teaser proves that it is completely aware of. However, Kaling has proven her mettle when it comes to scripted comedy, and voice actors Glenn Howerton, Sam Richardson, and Constance Wu are established comedic talents that have each played characters successfully similar to those they will be portraying in Velma. Additionally, audiences sometimes embrace and celebrate change, with Scooby-Doo fans celebrating the reveal that Velma will have a crush on a girl in the new film, Trick or Treat Scooby-Doo!. Viewer opinions of Velma remain to be seen, but the tonal shift, exploration of beloved character backstories, and modern spin set up by the show’s marketing promise a new era of Scooby-Doo.

Source: HBO Max, THR

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