STUDIO: Warner Home Video
MSRP: $19.98
RATED: Not Rated
RUNNING TIME: 74 minutes
• Featurette

The Pitch

Talking dog and stoner pal go to Japan.

The Humans

Mindy Cohn, Kelly Hu, Casey Kasem, Sab Shimono and George Takei

I love the new WB animation logo.

The Nutshell

A museum curator in Japan has found the legendary Black Samurai armor. He is thrilled that people with money will finally want to come to his pathetic museum. But, the Black Samurai has returned from beyond to reclaim his armor. What’s a Japanese academic to do? Well, he calls on a couple of American teens and a talking dog. Logic just got f’d in the a.

You will believe that a mop can be stuffed up a man’s starfish.

The Lowdown

Scooby-Doo isn’t even trying at this point. But, if you’re a talking dog that’s managed to down as much as crap as he has, you catch a break. It’s hard to believe that we’ve almost had four decades of this a-hole talking with his canine lisp. This film is the same as the rest of the Scooby-Doo adventures. You’re not going to be surprised by the outcome. The only differences are the cultural references and the villains.

Scooby-Doo and the Samurai Sword opens on the aforementioned Black Samurai attack at the museum. Naturally, the Scooby gang shows up and they immediately set out to discover Japan. Sure, they eventually case the crime scene and find clues. But, Daphne is busy learning martial arts from a local. There’s some debate about life lessons and the old vs. the young. But in less than eighty minutes, there’s not a lot of insight.

Shaggy would fare well in an Eli Roth film. Just slap a Sneepur Patrol shirt on him and I’m entertained.

The film hauls ass through the efforts after the gang arrives and gets accustomed to Japan. There’s a Kill Bill style training sequence where Scooby and Shaggy learn how to take out the Black Samurai. Daphne has trouble with the fact that the older karate master can’t understand how she wants to win. Fred shows up to say something stupid. What’s more f’d up is that Frank Welker’s increasing age is starting to come across in Fred’s voice. Maybe it’s time to hang up the microphone.

Not even in Japan, Velma. Nobody would touch that matted auburn pubic mess even in Japan.

By the time that the Black Samurai shows up for the final showdown, nobody cares. Even the eventual villain identity reveal is lame. You almost want the Scooby gang to get pissed. They’ve been solving cases for years, so maybe they’re jaded by now. I would love to see a shot of the gang hanging around the Scooby office lamenting the fact that they’ve wasted their lives hunting down fake ghosts without ever coming together as an extended family. But, I wish for a lot.

The DVD only sports a featurette about Japan. You get to learn about martial arts and Japanese history from a kids’ perspective. Needless to say, you get about twenty-two minutes focusing on a country’s proud legacy. You learn about as much as it sounds like you would learn. Don’t expect a lot.

Follow Velma’s vision line. Follow it.

The Package

The DVD is kind of lame. It only contains a featurette about taking a kid-friendly approach to Japan and Martial Arts. After your kids spend the next thirty minutes kicking the shit out of each other, they’re bored again. I’ve got nothing for them. However, I’ve made a new special feature* that’s only accessible through this review. Don’t say I never helped you out.

*Those weird cats with yellow fever can use the .gif below for some target practice.

4.0 out of 10