By Philip Schweier
Dec 13, 2017 - 9:48
In “Used Scars,” after 40+ years, the iconic Mystery Machine may be due to be replaced, and the gang visits a used car lot in search of a possible replacement – a haunted car lot, of all things. The monster in question is the Slimmer Man, akin one of those blow-up wavy balloons car lots place out by the street to capture people’s attention. The culprit is tenuous at best, without the least bit discernible motive.
In “Fright Ride,” a desperate reporter joins Mystery Inc. on a ride-along, to gain insight to what the do and how they do it. But a mysterious gallery show features a painting which is a clue to a series of unlikely thefts. The who, how and why are revealed at the end, with a bit of come-uppance for the journalist.
Both stories are contrary to the concept of the “play fair” mystery. In both instances, details vital to solution is kept from the audience, and only the Scooby gang is privy to the information. Sure, it makes them look smart, but if the readers had known, we could have solved the mystery as well.
Artwork is weak as well, continuing the appearance of the panels sometimes being assembled from stock images, especially in the first story.