JJoe Ruby, creator of Scooby-Doo, dies. He was 87 years old and was the creator of Scooby-Doo along with Ken Spears in 1969.
He was, along with Ken Spears, the prolific creator of highly successful animated TV series. The best known is certainly Scooby-Doo, one of the most historic series of the famous Hanna & Barbera house.
We speak of course of the same parent company of series such as Tom & Jerry, The Flintstones and
The Jetstones. The original Scooby-Doo series, which aired on CBS for three seasons, in 1969 and 1970, then gave birth to a franchise that is still very successful today.
As you all know, the protagonists are a ramshackle team of “mystery investigators”, who, aboard their very hippie Mystery Machine, investigate paranormal and scary phenomena which are always revealed to be machinations or deceptions perpetrated by scammers and criminals.
The five characters are Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy and the dog Scooby. The comedy of the series is mainly given by the contrast between the very logical and deductive approach of the first three during the investigation and the coarse behavior, a la Lou Costello, of the last two.
A formula of safe and lasting success.
Joe Ruby did not only create Scooby-Doo: his creations include numerous other animated series, more or less famous, such as Dynomutt (1976) and Jabberjaw (1976). In the late 1970s he and Spears founded Ruby-Spears Production, starting to engage independently in animation for much of the 1980s.
His long career as an animator touched some of the small screen’s most cherished characters, giving life to Dynomutt and his faithful
Dog Wonder and the Jabber shark, but also to the series Gli Erculioidi, Electra Woman and Dyna Girl and even Captain Caveman and the teen angels, true cult of American TV of the 70s and 80s.
The Scooby-Doo franchise, his most popular creation, was born in 1969 at Hanna-Barbera Productions and soon gained international success, so much so that in 1976 the Scooby-Doo Show arrived, while in the 80s the series was re-invented and the character of Scrappy-Doo was also introduced.
In those same years Ruby also collaborated on the animated series Alvin & the Chipmunks, Mister T and Police School, the latter inspired by the adventures of the A-Team of the deranged agents led by Carey Mahoney and Larvell Jones.
However, that of Scooby-Doo certainly remains his best known legacy. Not much is known about his career in the last thirty years and the cause of his death has not yet been disclosed. However, one of the great and silent geniuses of pop culture of the twentieth century is missing, capable of creating unforgettable characters.