Other Show Questions By John Likeglass
This section is new. Many people write in with questions regarding the production or other aspects of the show. I thought it might be fun to have a page where these questions can be displayed.
Tarankin19 Writes- Who came up with the names for the Scooby Doo Characters? I'd never even heard of names like Daphne or Velma or Norville until I saw the show!
Blame Fred Silverman for that one!
Chad Writes- I read with amazement to personal lives of the characters who played the voices on Scooby Doo. I am most fascinated with the voice changes with the Velma character. I understand Nicole Jaffe left the show to become an agent for other actors. Is there a reason why her name always appeared at the top of the credits during the 1969-1974 seasons. Also, why did Velma have much fewer lines in the The Scooby Doo movies 1972-1974 than she did in the Scooby Doo Where Are You series.
Another question, why did Velma's hair change from brown (Nicole Jaffe) to red (Pat Stevens).
Actually, the credits were in alphabetical order! As for the fewer lines, the Pat Stevens Velma was a bit more mellow. The hair color is a real mystery! Velma was chartered with brown hair and there was no reason given for the change. Sources tell me that the red hair was a painting goof-up by the new staff. (Remember, the show had been retired then brought back.) Once it occurred, they stuck with it. (Also, see below.)
Kyle Writes- I just wanted to say that your site is the coolest mystery inc. site I ever saw! My favorite part is the stories, I hope you get more. I had a question for you. Do you know when the live action flick will come out and who will play Velma ?
Check our Rumors page! More is becoming fact everyday!
Also, in the episode Haunted House Hang-up, they stop at the haunted house cuz the mystery machine over heated, they open the front and there was an engine, so that's what powered the thing.
Maybe... But that engine did a lot of moving around!
Susan Writes- Why are the lenses in Velma's glasses tinted blue?
This actually has more to do with Hanna-Barbera's animation techniques that Velma starting a new fashion trend in eye-wear! In almost all of the old HB cartoons, glasses were tinted like that. It helped define that they really had glass in them. (Ironic, as most glasses nowadays are not made with glass lenses.) The technique was dropped on most newer cartoons, but became such a part of Velma's character, that even in the latest movie, "The Witch's Ghost", she is drawn with the tinted lenses. This, despite the fact that Ben Ravencroft, who also wore glasses in the flick, is drawn without the classic lens tint. When Velma accidently ends up with his glasses, the tint is gone!
Abhawk Writes -
Hi, I was wondering if it is true that Velma didn't talk very much, or if that was just part of her later character in the remade version of Scooby Doo.
As the series went through it's changes, each production and writing team put it's own spin on where the focus should be. Velma was quite talkative in the first series. Subsequent teams focused on the "Fred & Daphne" pair, or the "Shaggy & Scooby" pair. In both cases, Velma got the back seat, so to speak. When Scrappy was added, Velma was one of the first characters cut from the show. (This was also when Nicole Jaffe, the first voice for Velma disappeared from Hanna Barbera) I was glad to see that when Warner Brothers released "Zombie Island", Velma was back in all of her glory, and played a major role in "Witch's Ghost."
Kelley Writes -
I've watched Scooby Doo for many years. Velma really changed over the years, do you know why?
Three people played the teen/adult Velma on Scooby over the years. Each added their own flavor to the character. The original Velma was Nicole Jaffe. During the Nicole years, Velma could be quite outspoken, was more daring, and lost her glasses a lot. She always had a comment, and was quite the smarty pants. This was a 15 year old Velma that had a lot of youthful energy. She was thin (95 lbs) and just liked baggy clothing. She was somewhat of a loner, and tended to go off exploring on her own, a lot of times, getting herself into trouble. In the mid 70's, Pat Stevens took over the role. Pat's Velma was a bit more mature and soft spoken. She thought about what she would do before doing it. A "kinder and gentler" Velma. This Velma was drawn as a tad heavier. (Picture below.) When Pat left the show, she went on to become a collage professor. The latest Velma is being played by Betty Jean Ward. This is an adult Velma, who has mellowed out even more. However, this new Velma is more aggressive than Pat's. In some ways the loop is now completed, as the old youthful energy rises it's head from time to time. Her voice is more mellow, which fits the character, who is now 24 years old. Check out the "Casting" page for more info on the crew who gave Velma and the others life!
Update! In the 2003 release of "Legend of the Vampire", Nicole has returned to voice Velma!
There is an early production picture on your site that shows Velma without glasses. When and why do you think they decided to give her glasses?
Although Fred Silverman and Iwao Takamoto are the only ones who know for sure, I believe this change occurred in the "Character Development" stage of pre-production. During this stage, personalities as well as final looks are developed. Velma looked to be more of the cultural / artistic type in the original picture. This was changed to be more of an intellectual type, which would fit the theme of a mystery show better. To support that image, glasses were added and the image "clicked." The writers have had a field day with those glasses, and today it is hard to imagine Velma without her world famous glasses!
In 1998, Professor Pat Stevens (Velma #2, 1974 to 1979) was interviewed about her work with Scooby-Doo, here are some of her thoughts-
She doesn't drive the Mystery Machine to campus, she doesn't eat Scooby Snacks, and "jinkies" is not a permanent part of her vocabulary. But you can call her Velma, if you want. Pat Stevens, a visiting professor in the UNL Department of Theatre Arts and Dance, was born with the voice that any child of the '70s identifies with - the "smart one" from the cartoon hit that ran every weekday for a full decade, "The Scooby Doo Show." "I was working in L.A. and taking a class from Gordon Hunt, who also happened to be a director, "Stevens said. "The woman who had been doing the voice left, and it was just one of those things. He asked me if I wanted to try out, so I did, and ended up doing it for five years. It was wonderful." Stevens got the audition after the original actress and voice of Velma, provided by Nicole Jaffe, left the show to become an agent for other actors. Stevens remains amazed at the overwhelming popularity of the show, as well as at many of the metaphors surrounding the series. "It is fabulous. It really is great. The first time someone asked me if all the characters were on drugs, I was stunned," Stevens said, laughing. "I had never made the connection. But I thought it was really funny." Stevens said she never realized how big the series was until she met a student who wrote his dissertation based around the show. "The show was absolutely not a metaphor for anything," she said. "It was just us kids riding around in a mystery van and doing our thing. Stevens said she usually doesn't tell her students about her interesting past, but they often find out one way or another. "It was 20 years ago, but it still trails around," she said. "When they do hear about it, they usually say 'But you don't understand how important it is to us!' "It's great to be a part of that."
Pat Stevens comments come from October 98 interview. See Legal Disclaimer for credits.
For more information about some of the other Velma's, see our Casting page!
Have a question? Mail it here. In the "subject field" put the word "Production"
Back to The Hub (to explore more of Velma's site, as well as links)