According to its IMDb reviews, HBO Max’s adult-oriented Scooby-Doo spinoff Velma does not sit well with fans of the original franchise.
After more than 10 years on the throne, Dragonball Evolution has to hand over the crown for the most unpopular screen entertainment product on the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) to HBO Max’s new animated show Velma.
Several users on Twitter pointed it out: Dragonball Evolution has fallen. Or rather moved up. With its low audience score of 2.5 out of 10 at the time of writing, it is no match for the adult Scooby-Do spinoff Velma, which comes in at a lowly 1.3. Individually, the two episodes available so far only did marginally better, having been given scores of 2.7 and 2.3, respectively. The low IMDb scores mirror the show’s audience reception on Rotten Tomatoes.
Velma Is Facing Backlash from Scooby-Doo Fans
In user reviews, viewers criticized Velma’s lack of the old Scooby-Doo spirit as well as the lack of Scooby-Doo himself. Several reviewers wondered which kind of audience the show’s creators had in mind since it didn’t seem a good fit for the tastes of people who liked the older, family-friendly show. But even fans who had no reservations about turning a beloved kids’ cartoon from the 1960s into a raunchy adult-animation show found fault with this particular raunchy adult-animation show, criticizing not so much the nature of the jokes but their perceived lack of quantity and quality.
Outside the world of unamused fans, Velma fared somewhat better. While it wasn’t a runaway hit with professional critics either, their reviews seemed more on the average than the bad side, praising the show’s potential while lamenting it wasn’t fully reached. Whether disliked or not, Velma so far has been a ratings hit for HBO Max and might already be up for a second season.
Besides their lack of popularity with IMDb users, Velma and Dragonball Evolution have something else in common: Both are new interpretations of well-established franchises with passionate and opinionated fans. Dragonball Evolution dates back to the manga Dragon Ball, created by Akira Toriyama in 1984. The fantasy tale about a group of friends searching for the legendary Dragon Balls that can summon a wish-fulfilling dragon has since been expanded into a multimedia franchise incorporating several manga and anime series, animated films, video games and theme park attractions. Dragonball Evolution is so far the only live-action adaptation. It made only about half of its $58.2 million budget back.
Velma stars Mindy Kaling as the geeky amateur sleuth. The show is now streaming on HBO Max.
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