The return of The Three Stooges in an episode that is towards the better end of the show
'The New Scooby Doo Movies' is not a consistent show and has its flaws (notably the animation and some episodes that feel stretched due to longer, perhaps 10-15 minutes too long, lengths). However it is still entertaining and is one of the better Scooby Doo incarnations.
Signalling the second of two appearances from The Three Stooges, "The Ghost of the Red Baron" always struck me as the better of their two episodes (the other being the decent if at times dull "Ghastly Ghost Town" and it is still that way now. Not all the plot is as tight or as eventful as it could have been, with some parts feeling padded and stretched.
While the Ghost of the Red Baron himself is a good villain, actually being quite scary to a young adult and he is one of the better drawn villains in the series, he is much more effective when he is flying in that creepy plane of his, when he's jumping around it takes away from his eeriness and makes him somewhat goofy.
People may be sick of me already about ragging on the animation quality, which has never been a strong point of the show and even that was acknowledged in my somewhat too generous review for the overall show way back in 2009, but while there is definitely far worse animation in the show because the episode is very atmospheric and has some nice colours it's still lacking in smoothness and characters look crude and rough.
However, while they could have had more to do, The Three Stooges are still very entertaining, their material is funnier and their humour does mesh better with the mystery aspects. The mystery is one rich in atmosphere and for the show feels more like a Scooby Doo mystery than being too reliant on the guest appearances.
There are some funny moments in the spirit of Scooby Doo and also with the style of the Three Stooges and the climax is quite fun and imaginative. It just feels 10-15 minutes too long, that's all but it's not the first episode of the show to feel like that and it's certainly not the last or even the worst case.
As to be expected, the music is haunting and energetic, with the theme song ever catchy and infectious. The characters mostly, apart from some dull secondary characters, are fine, especially Shaggy and Scooby, their friendship/bond still shining like sunshine wonderfully. The voices are still top-notch, Don Messick and Casey Kasem are without equal as Scooby and Shaggy and while it was a shame not using the original Three Stooges like they did ingeniously with The Addams Family in "Wednesday is Missing" (one of the show's best episodes) the reason why they didn't is understandable and the voice actors still did a good job.
In conclusion, the better episode of The Three Stooges appearance and towards the better end of the show. For the first season of 'The New Scooby Doo Movies' though, "Wednesday is Missing", the Batman and Robin episodes and the Davey Jones episodes are the standouts. 8/10 Bethany Cox
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