THE AISLE SEAT - by Mike McGranaghan
"SCOOBY-DOO WRESTLEMANIA MYSTERY"
Own it on Blu-ray combo pack or Digital HD March 25th
Scooby-Doo and his gang have been solving mysteries for decades. I watched them as a kid, and now my son watches them. Their ongoing popularity provides an occasion to ask some nagging questions: How did Scooby-Doo learn to talk? Why, after debunking so many paranormal activities, are Scooby and Shaggy still afraid of ghosts? What's really going on between Fred, Velma, and Daphne? You won't find the answers in the new animated feature Scooby-Doo! WrestleMania Mystery, but you will see some of the WWE's most well-known wrestlers coming together with “those meddling kids” for some spooky adventures.
Shaggy (voiced by Matthew Lillard) and Scooby win an all-expenses-paid trip to a WrestleMania event in “WWE City.” (If that was a real place, I know at least six people who would move there.) They convince the rest of the gang to tag along in the Mystery Machine. No sooner do they arrive than a ghost bear begins threatening the city and trying to steal the championship title belt, much to the dismay of Vince McMahon (playing himself). Fortunately, they have a slew of famous WWE wrestlers – including John Cena, Triple H, Sin Cara, Brodus Clay, AJ Lee, The Miz, Santino, and Kane - to help them uncover the truth behind the evil plot.
Putting the Scooby Gang in the middle of the WWE is an unlikely idea, but that's also part of what's amusing about the movie, even if you don't care for professional wrestling. (Which, in honesty, I do not.) It's a kick watching the familiar wrestlers make cameos. WrestleMania Mystery finds some fun things to do with them, such as having Daphne develop a hopeless crush on John Cena. And since the WWE allows itself to be spoofed, there are moments that gently poke fun at the absurd antics of WrestleMania events. Nowhere is this more evident than in the sequence in which Scooby and Shaggy have to participate in a WWE bout. The fight eventually makes its way under the ring and evolves into a loopy cage match. There are most definitely a few laughs to be had, for kids and adults.
Is 84 minutes a little long for this kind of thing? Yes. Sixty minutes, tops, would have felt just about right. The explanation of the mystery is also needlessly complicated and likely to go over the heads of very young viewers. That said, it's safe to say that if you have A.) a Scooby-Doo fan; B.) a WWE fan; or C.) both in your household, Scooby-Doo WrestleMania Mystery will provide sufficient entertainment for them.
The Blu-Ray contains two bonus features. “Behind the Scenes with Scooby-Doo and the WWE Gang” is a seven-minute segment in which the wrestlers discuss their involvement with the project. There's also a bonus wrestling-themed episode of “A Pup Named Scooby-Doo.” A digital copy of the film is additionally contained within the Blu-Ray/DVD combo pack.
Scooby-Doo WrestleMania Mystery is unrated, but contains some mild wrestling violence. The running time is 1 hour and 24 minutes.
Buy a copy of my book, "Straight-Up Blatant: Musings From The Aisle Seat," on sale now at Lulu.com! Paperback and Kindle editions also available at Amazon.com!