This is a spoiler-free review
Scooby Apocalypse #2 is written by Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis with art by Howard Porter and colors by Hi-Fi.
In this reboot, Velma is a research scientist at a facility in France that experiments on making dogs intelligent. Shaggy is a dog trainer there who befriends Scooby. Scooby-Doo is one of the experimental dogs but his intelligence never progressed past a toddler. Daphne is the host of a TV show on unexplained mysteries and Fred is her cameraman. Velma called Daphne and Fred in to expose a secret experiment. Velma and her colleagues invented nanites that could alter human behavior such as taking out greed. However, her colleagues manipulated it so that the nanites will disperse and make everyone docile and easy to control. The nanites were released accidentally and turned people into monsters.
The Scooby gang must fight their way through the facility in order to survive.
Daphne continues to be the stand out character of the book. It almost feels like a personal challenge for the writers. I feel like they wanted to see if the worst character on the show could be the best. She’s bad ass, fun and probably the most interesting character. Because the monsters are, or were, people, they are killing human beings. That hits Daphne really hard because she is the only one that can defend herself in the group so she has to do the dirty work but that means doing terrible things. She’s definitely the most fleshed out of the group with the most personality and a clear ideology.
There are great moments with the other characters as well. Shaggy and Fred get several hilarious lines. Velma has a great moment where we see how she has to detach herself from the situation and be as cold as possible so that she can find a solution. Everyone is certainly likeable; DeMatteis’ dialogue really shines throughout the issue.
The art is great. Porter’s work is really cool. I like the monster designs quite a bit. And Hi-Fi’s colors are always a stand out in the industry.
Scooby doesn’t get to do much in this which is unfortunate. He gets a couple of moments where he attempts to fight a monster but he generally sits in the background.
While I like the designs, I hope to see some of the classic Scooby monsters at some point.
Overall, this is another really solid issue. The characterizations are honestly the most appealing aspect of the issue with Daphne being the stand out character. I was really impressed with the ethical questions raised and I had a lot of fun with this book. I definitely recommend picking this up.