Theology & Scooby Doo

Growing up with these cartoons, and now watching my children devour the originals as well as all of the subsequent spin-offs and modified shows, this essay hit a soft spot in me.

I’ve often mused (because I have nothing better to do, obviously) that Scooby Doo is a snapshot of our culture.  The series began with the kids stumbling into events well out of their league.  But tenacious curiosity triumphed over fear and terror, allowing the gang to unravel mysteries time and time again.  In later iterations of the show, there isn’t even a pretense of belief that any of the odd creatures and events they encounter might be real.  The assumption has become that it’s a cover up for something and someone else.  Initial fear is still there -we can’t control that primal response to the unexpected – but the entire premise is that in overcoming fear and applying our minds, logic and reason will show without a doubt that the supernatural doesn’t exist.  
We can explain everything, given enough time and clues.
I like this essay a lot, though I don’t agree with his conclusions.  Yes, greed and power are traditionally behind the occult, the desire to personally be like God (or more accurately, to displace God and be God) that has been at the heart of sin since Eden.  But Scooby Doo is alleging that these ‘demons’ are nothing more than the playing out of our own issues.  The demons aren’t real, because all of these motivations come from within.  I believe that Scooby Doo really does mirror our cultural insistence that we can explain and control everything.  Our human frailties set us up to do wrong, but that wrong will be conquered by application of the intellect.  
If we just think properly, we can expunge the ‘demons’ from within us, even the age-old demons of desiring to be God.
In which case, Scooby Doo is wrong, just as modernism and the scientific mindset that is both it’s ancestor and offspring is ultimately flawed in this assumption.  We can and should explain a great deal.  But that doesn’t necessitate that there is nothing inexplicable, nothing beyond our ability to understand, nothing supernatural, whether angelic or demonic.  
But that would wreck the model that has made Scooby Doo a success for over 40 years, so I can’t really expect them to change!

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