Since then Scooby Doo Where Are You? premiered in 1969, fans have had questions about the show. How can Shaggy understand Scooby? Is Scooby a product of Shaggy’s drugged imagination? Why would a person eat dog biscuits?
A Reddit theory opened a can of worms by connecting the beloved cartoon to the Vietnam War.
You have read well. User bigelow6698 believes that Fred Jones and Norville “Shaggy” Rogers dodged conscription to avoid serving in the Vietnam War. that would Scooby Doo Where Are You? a pseudo-political program, since the creators of the program, through the characters, would have been making a statement about one of the most senseless conflicts in the United States.
As bigelow6698 said:
“Scooby Do is supposed to take place sometime in the late 1960s, when the Vietnam War was underway. It seems that the whole gang are probably young adults. If Shaggy and Fred are between 18 and 25 years old, they would be eligible for the draft.
There’s no arguing the logic, with Reddit user Heretical_Cactus adding that Fred’s parents may have prevented him from joining the war effort, while Shaggy may have suffered from PTSD.
“Fred’s (adoptive?) parents are loaded, he paid not to be drafted
“Shaggy toured (1 year) and has PTSD and promised not to fight anymore.
“Or he is a fugitive because he deserted”
Bigelow6698 is not alone in this line of thinking. Three years ago, CNN published an article about the correlation between the program and the current social upheaval.
With so many questions about Shaggy, the theory lent itself to explanations about the beatnik’s strange behavior. InfiniteEmotions pointed to Scooby being a Great Dane as evidence that Norville Rogers was in the military. “He would explain his extreme reactions to vaguely creepy situations. Even Scooby could be explained by many veterans with PTSD (or ‘shell shock’ as it was known at the time) having large dogs.”
Probably the most thought provoking answer came from yourmartymcflyisopen. The user took the theory to heart and practically wrote an essay, detailing how the entire series may be happening in Shaggy’s imagination.
“Nah, Shaggy served and watched people die, the whole show is really his PTSD and drug-fueled night terrors spilling into his everyday life like hallucinations. Scooby-Doo is his service dog whom he hallucinates with a personality: the personality of his dead brother who was killed by the Vietcong, whose dream was to open a sandwich shop after the war. Chasing Monsters are a combination of 3 things depending on the type of monster and the environment: 1. Shaggy chasing the dragon (another term for heroin usage. Note that each monster is not really a monster, it’s just an old in power who is trying to hurt people (kind of like politicians), so there’s really no reward since there’s never really a monster, that’s why they keep getting into this mess, Shaggy keeps injecting), 2 (If the episode is in a swamp, jungle, or Asian-inspired) Shaggy is having fictional flashbacks to his real time in Vietnam, or 3. The monsters represent Shaggy’s demons and post-war civil responsibilities, of the who is always on the run.
“Shaggy uses marijuana and heroin as a coping mechanism that makes Scooby-Doo hallucinate talking and makes him really hungry.
“He is a vegetarian in honor of his brother who wanted to start a vegetarian sandwich restaurant.
“Fred is a ‘Boyscout’ type because he represents one of Shaggy’s platoon leaders: a rich kid who wasn’t drafted, but signed up for the war thinking he’d be a hero, setting traps and leading his gang (squad) through a victory, only for the traps to fail, and his ideas shattered by morally questionable guerrilla warfare tactics, he played too close to the book, and killed many men, including Shaggy’s brother Scoobert (it’s not uncommon to think that his the The brothers’ name could have been Scoobert, Shaggy’s name is literally Norville).
“Velma is Shaggy’s therapist at the VA hospital, who guides him through his hallucinations and flashbacks by offering him her PTSD medication (Scooby-Snacks) before each session so he can work his way through their discussion.
And Daphne. I haven’t found a place for Daphne in this idea, feel free to add.”
The Vietnam War theory certainly adds layers to the caricature of children. Maybe it’s time to give it a second look.