I love Scooby-Doo, not as much as someone like Creepy for that matter but I’ve always wanted to do a Scooby-Doo Halloween event. Though I realized how daunting that could be, one idea I had was reviewing Halloween issues of Scooby comics leading up to this
But there have been a lot of Scooby comics, so I decided to keep it small, with one Halloween episode, a Scooby-Doo comic, and a review of my Scooby movie on Halloween. Today, we start with a Halloween episode from The Scooby-Doo Show. Which is Scoob’s third incarnation and this episode comes from 1976 and this episode pulls from one of the most beloved Halloween stories, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
However, this episode does something that I’ve seen a couple of times before in that it makes the events of Irving’s beloved story real and that they happened years ago. This calls to mind both an episode of Are You Afraid of the Dark playing with this idea and there is of course the Fox show, Sleepy Hollow.
However, this episode does a bit less with the idea of the story being true. And perhaps that’s because this is an early Scooby entry whereas if Mystery Inc. had handled this, The Headless Horseman wouldn’t just be a myth but an actual supernatural creature. Does that make it bad? No, rather you just have to know what to expect with this episode.
The gang is taking part in a party at Crane Manor, which is our first giveaway that Ichabod was a real person within the world of this show. They are there along with Scooby’s brother, Scooby Dum. Oh yay, my least favorite Scooby-Doo character. For all the hate that Scrappy gets, this guy is so much worse as he is just the trope of idiot that thinks he’s smart. I will say that I do love seeing the characters in Halloween costumes.
Scooby, Shaggy, and Dum are chased by The Headless Horseman and we will get to this but the episode doesn’t really try with its Horseman in my opinion. And this is where we learn the story of how this family is related to Crane.
Mrs. Crane’s niece, Beth. Beth mentions her great-great-grandfather was Ichabod Crane. Scooby and Shaggy run in and tell their story, and Beth fears that the Headless Horseman has come back to haunt her family, considering her grandfather Ichabod was chased by one years earlier
This will play a larger part as the Horseman is a Crane family member, the cousin, Elwood and he has been trying to get his aunt’s necklace ever she brought into the house. And this is where the episode loses me a smidge. I get the idea of The Headless Horseman wanting a head but for a good portion of the episode, his disguise is just him covered in makeup making the characters believe The Horseman had taken Elwood’s head.
Something about that didn’t sit right with me. I get the idea and maybe because this is an earlier Scooby entry but I would hope the Mystery Gang would be better detectives than this. Which comes to the next point being the sleuthing. I believe the clues were laid out fairly so the audience watching could figure being that of how Elwood crashed his car but left his key on him, Shaggy found a newspaper clipping that highlighted that he was after the necklace because his company had gone bankrupt. And Elwood was planning to flee the country with his aunt’s necklace.
It’s not a bad episode and a good one for the holiday plus there are some fun moments such as The Horseman chasing Scooby and Shaggy through the manor and then again on a plane. Which called to mind the LEGO movie, Haunted Hollywood. I believe the LEGO minifigure for The Headless Horseman may have pulled from this Horseman’s design.
There’s not a whole lot of need to go into the characters with this episode as this was still a period where while the characters are great, they weren’t as fully realized as they would become.
My Final Thoughts
Not a bad episode and a fun one for Halloween to be sure but I dunno, I still feel that while it’s good, there were parts that were lacking. I don’t dislike it as I said but I wish there was more to it. Join me next time as we look at a Halloween issue of Scooby-Doo Team-Up