"Psychic Fiend Network"
"Case of the Cold Trail"
Writers: Robbie Busch; Brett Lewis
Artists: Scott Neely; Karen Matchette(p), Dan Davis(i); Paul Becton(c)
The gang speak like themselves and behave within character, but they drag this first mystery out far too long. Since magic has until the highly recommended Scooby-Doo movie never been accepted in Mystery Inc.'s adventures, the puzzle's solution seems obvious.
The motive of the first mystery doesn't really make too much sense. While I appreciate that money is the root cause, the event described rarely if ever happens in the land of television.
The artwork by Scott Neely offers a strikingly different look to that of Joe Staton's usual effortless depiction of Scoob and the Gang, and Neely gives the characters a lot of depth and distinction while keeping Mystery Inc. on model to make a valid interpretation.
The same can be said of Karen Matchette in the next mystery. She however is stuck with a monster that cannot match the power of the classic Scooby villain The Snow Demon.
Matchette tries extremely hard. If she cannot make the beast menacing in look, she will make it menacing in its actions. The color scheme also enlivens this potentially risible spook into a more respectable oddity.
The second puzzle's plot offers complexity that allows the delectable Daphne to show off her sleuthing ability. Mr. Lewis also has the audacity to construct a Freddie trap that actually works and perfectly times the use of Shaggy and Scooby. The scene not only provides some good-natured fun but also remarks on the friendship shared between the gang of those "meddling kids and their dog."
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