TV SERIES Review: Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? S1E7 – Never Ape An Apeman ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Season 1
CBS (HBO Max)
October 25, 1969

Episode 7 – “Never Ape an Ape Man”

The gang are invited to Daphne’s Uncle John Maxwell, a director on a film about an Ape Man. He explains to them that there is a legend of an Ape Man.

Uncle John then shoots a scene with the Ape Man in the movie and Carl the Stuntman as the ape with the actress Candy going out on a bridge. It’s not Carl the Stuntman. Something goes horribly wrong when the Ape Man goes off script and shakes the bridge.

Scooby is dispatched to confront the Ape Man comically. The Ape Man breaks the bridge and Scooby bounces off a branch below.

The gang must now solve the mystery of the Ape Man legend and find Carl the Stuntman. They find Carl locked in a case. Carl says he was knocked out.

This leads Candy to quit the picture over fear of further attacks by the Ape Man.

The gang must now work to learn the truth behind the Ape Man so Uncle John can continue making the picture.

Summary

Have to wonder if this was at least partially inspired by Planet of the Apes (1969)?

My favorite scene is the Ape Man putting on a Scooby mask and looking like Scoob in the mirror. Scoob then try tries to explain to the gang he has seen a freaky reflection.

This one plays with the established formula of the gang being in the wrong place at the right time to solve a mystery. As for this week’s monster, the Ape Man, doesn’t prove to be a very formidable enemy. The mystery is one of the least complex. It’s an episode more about using costumes to make yourself be someone else.

An entertaining, but not blow me away episode.

Overall episode rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Behind The Scenes: The Laugh Track

Why the laugh track was removed from the original episodes, then added back in the late 70s?

Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! utilized a laugh track, a common feature in most animated TV series until the late 1970s. It was removed for syndication in the 1980s. Following Turner’s purchase of Hanna-Barbera and its networks’ (TBS, TNT and Cartoon Network) initial broadcast of the series in 1994, the laugh track was reinstated in 1997.

Wikipedia entry

I vaguely remember watching the show with the laugh track, but not without. While rewatching the first season to write these reviews, it wouldn’t seem right without the laugh track, despite how poorly timed the track is utilized at times during the show. For example, there are moments that are supposed to be scary, yet the laugh track kicks off. Maybe this was done so as not to be too scary to young children, but it distracts adult viewing.

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