Scooby-Doo #40

Posted: Sunday, September 17
By: Ray Tate
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"Roc Around the Clock"
"Ghost Tour"

Writer:John Rozum, Dan Abnett
Artist:John Delaney,Anthony Williams(p),Dave Cooper,Jeff Albrecht(i), Paul Becton(c)

Plot: Scooby and the gang unmask atypical Mr. Haneys in two adventures.

Thank the cosmos! After last issue, I thought the world had stopped making sense.  Scooby-Doo regains its bark and its bite.

In the first story, Scoob and the gang while searching for an anniversary gift for Daphne's parents find themselves between a Roc and a hard place.  The presence of the mythical bird makes for a nice change from the usual faux spectral hauntings, and Mr. Rozum feathers this particular nest with extremely subtle writing.

Why a Roc, you may ask? The answer for the inspiration floats in Shag's and Scoob's exchange.  Naturally, it's not a real Roc.  The formula to Scooby-Doo has always been to provide a rational explanation for seemingly supernatural events.  It's the element that distinguished Scoob's and the gang's adventures from every other cartoon.  No accident that the only super-heroes who guest-starred on the canonical shows were Batman and Robin the only heroes who would work in the real world.  The motive and the method of the Roc satisfies and regarding the bird's construction ingenious.  Not a hologram, folks.

John Delaney, Dave Cooper and Paul Becton provide the plumage, and though the delectable Daphne is shamefully neglected, the chase is exciting, and the bird is Hanna-Barbera styled serious.  The dramatic shading and shadows emphasize the elements of the mystery and give the book a foundation in reality.

In the second story Dan Abnett takes the gang on holiday.  I thought I could predict this amusement, but Mr. Abnett surprises by keeping the ghost on the road.  Again, Daphne is sidelined, but Anthony Williams makes the masked miscreant interesting through a period style dress.

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