A Night of Fright is No Delight

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A Night of Fright is No Delight
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Premiere date: January 10, 1970
Music composed by: Ted Nichols
Directors: William Hanna and Joseph Barbera
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"A Night of Fright is No Delight" is the sixteenth episode of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! season one. It aired on January 10, 1970 on CBS. It was produced and directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, the founders of Hanna-Barbera Productions.

Scooby is in the will of a rich Southern colonel and could win his estate if he can spend the night in his mansion, along with the colonel's relatives. During the night, the relatives soon disappear one by one, leaving only Scooby, but is this a good thing?

Detailed summary

Scooby, Shaggy, Freddy, Daphne, and Velma are boating to a spooky mansion on an island. Scooby has been chosen as an heir to the late Colonel Beauregard Sanders, whom Scooby saved from drowning in a fish pond years before. It is a creepy night and there are thunder and lightning.

The Colonel's lawyer, Cosgood Creeps, comes to greet them and ushers them into the house. The gang meets the other four heirs, Cousin Slicker, Cousin Simple, Nephew Norble, and Sweet Cousin Maldahyde. Cosgood tells the heirs that the only instructions from the Colonel were to play a record. The recording tells them they must stay the night to get the fortune and that the mansion is haunted, much to Scooby's and Shaggy's horror. The whole gang decides they'll stay with Scooby.

Fred, Shaggy, and Scooby are getting ready for the night. Fred and Shaggy are in the bedroom taking turns reading a book while Scooby decides to take a bath. Fred tells Scooby to hurry up and he is scrubbing up when a ghost appears from a tile trapdoor. The bathtub slides through a secret passage and down a chute into a coal cellar with Scooby in it. While he is sitting on a pile of coal, a green, chain-rattling phantom shadow appears, laughing. Scooby is terrified and he breaks out of the basement. He frantically tries to explain what happened, but after seeing the bathtub in place and bolted to the floor, they dismiss it and go to bed.

The clock chimes midnight and a green ghost goes into Cousin Simple's room and stands over his bed, laughing. The gang wakes up and finds Cousin Simple gone. On a dusty mirror, a menacing message warns them to leave the island, signed the Phantom Shadow.

The gang decides to rig up a dummy of Scooby-Doo to catch the ghost when he comes to grab the dummy. Scooby and Shaggy are watching from outside on the drainpipe when suddenly the ghost pushes the drain pipe loose. Velma tries to help them but gets pulled out of the window, too.

The drainpipe swings the three down into a cave which turns out to be a secret passage underneath the house. They find the Phantom Shadow’s footprints and decide to follow them. The footprints lead to a room with a collection of Civil War memorabilia. They find a wagon full of uniforms, and one starts flying and chasing them. It corners them in an elevator and Scooby starts growling and making faces at it. It turns out to be a duck inside the uniform, which flies away scared.

Shaggy and Scooby go up in the elevator, which takes them to a secret entrance to Cousin Slicker’s room. Cousin Slicker is missing as well. The gang all meet up and realize that all of the other heirs are missing, and Scooby is the only remaining heir.

The gang follows the sound of an organ playing. They find the organ and then see something written down on a music book. It reads "Feed the organ, and watch the floor". Scooby plays the organ and the door locks and the walls begin to close in! Scooby starts playing as fast as he can and the walls stop. Velma deduces that Feed means notes. F-E-E-D. Playing the notes, a trapdoor opens and the gang climbs down steps to the catacombs. There they see the heirs inside coffins and one more coffin that is empty and dog-shaped.

Two Phantoms appear, and the gang runs away. Scooby faints, but a Scooby Snack revives him. They continue running and finally hide in a chandelier, but one of the Phantoms cuts it loose and it falls to the floor. Separated, Scooby and Shaggy find a wine rack and use the corks as ammunition against the Phantoms. They then run into a closet and emerge wearing dress clothes, set up a record player, and start dancing with the Phantoms. Leading them into the organ room, Shaggy opens the trapdoor and they send the Phantoms falling into the basement.

After the gang meets up, Velma notices that Shaggy has gotten green paint on his hands. That gives Fred an idea. They devise a trap, including a fan, soap suds, a spring-loaded ironing board, and a washing machine. It backfires when Scooby turns on the fan not only too soon, but also the wrong way, and the entire contraption goes airborne; however it still catches the Phantoms, who are unmasked as Cosgood Creeps and his partner, Crawls. They were trying to scare all of the heirs off of the island so they could keep the million dollars to themselves. The bodies in the coffins were dummies and they painted themselves to be green ghosts. As the only heir still on the mansion grounds, Scooby inherits the million dollars, only to learn it's all worthless Confederate money. Then a floating bone materializes, but that's one thing that Scooby isn't afraid of.

Memorable quotes

Cosgood Creeps: Attention everybody! As you all know, I am Cosgood Creeps, attorney of the late, Colonel Sanders. My partner, Mr. Crawls, couldn't make it tonight.
Shaggy: Creeps and Crawls! They sure picked the right lawyers for this job.


Velma: All but Shaggy and Scooby, they've decided to play it safe and watch this show from outside on the drainpipe.
Shaggy: I can't think of a safer place.


Velma: I told you I'd save you.
Shaggy: Great, but next time, please don't do me any favors.
Scooby-Doo: Reah, no ravours. Reah.


Fred: Four missing heirs, a haunted house, and a phantom shadow.
Shaggy: Like, all that's missing is a spooky organ.
Velma: It's not missing anymore!

Characters

Legend
Character debut Speaking debut Ep. debut No lines Mentioned

In order of appearance:

Character Actor
Daphne Blake Stefanianna Christopherson
Velma Dinkley Nicole Jaffe
Shaggy Rogers Casey Kasem
Scooby-Doo Don Messick
Fred Jones Frank Welker
Colonel Beaugard Sanders Casey Kasem
Cosgoode Creeps Hal Smith
Cousin Simple N/A
Nephew Norble N/A
Cousin Maldahyde N/A
Cousin Slicker Casey Kasem
Goldfish Unavailable
Green Ghosts Hal Smith
Duck Unavailable
Mr. Creeps N/A
Sheriff Casey Kasem


Organizations

Locations

Objects

Vehicles

  • Mystery Inc.'s boat

Production

Development

Joe Ruby and Ken Spears either wrote or story edited, as they were unable to remember what they specifically did past the fifth episode.[1]

Filming

Music

The theme song's lyrics were written by David Mook, while Ben Raleigh wrote the music, which was performed by Larry Marks. The score was composed by Ted Nichols, who was credited as the musical director.

Release

Dates are in order of release:

  • United States: January 10, 1970 at 10:30 am on CBS

Behind the scenes

Errors

  • The table with the phonograph disappears.
  • When Shaggy takes out his sandwich, the fishbowl beside him is completely empty, with no water or fish. But a few seconds later, when he grabs the box of fish food, the bowl has water and a goldfish that bares teeth and snaps at Shaggy! The fishbowl is empty once again when Shaggy repeats back to Scooby about his bathtub being dropped to the basement.
  • During the scene where Scooby is trying to tell Shag and Fred about the bathtub tipping into the basement, Freddy is wearing his regular clothes, when he tells them to look in the bathroom instead of his pajamas. Also at this time, the front of the fish food box has no writing.
  • Fred is also out of his pajamas when he shouldn't be when the gang peeks out of their rooms after they hear spooky noises coming from Cousin Simple's room.
  • When the drainpipe is falling towards the ocean, the pipe hits the ocean like it is glass. There is no splash!
  • When Velma tells Shaggy to follow the Phantom Shadow's footprints, her glasses have no lenses or the tint is missing from them.
  • In the scene where Velma figures out the "Feed the organ" riddle on the music sheet is musical notes, the maestro tail coat Scooby is wearing disappears briefly before he is shown with it again in the next scene after the secret passage in the floor is revealed. 
  • When the uniform is chasing Shaggy, Scooby, and Velma, the shoulder strap changes shoulder whenever the uniform changes direction, even though it should remain on the same shoulder as the uniform is always seen from the front.
  • The Green Ghosts' chains often switch from arm to arm and sometimes vanish altogether.
  • When Shaggy and Scooby pull the corks from wine bottles, the racks hold four bottles in each row but in the next shot, they hold three bottles per row.
  • Velma asks Shaggy, "How'd you get that green stuff on your hands?", but there is no visible "green stuff".
  • When Fred, Daphne and Velma are looking to the left upon hearing the Green Ghosts about to enter the trap, Daphne's pantyhose is missing.
  • The door on the washing machine has a right-hand opening swing when the trap is being set, but when Shaggy and Scooby catch the Green Ghosts, the door swings shut the other way. The hinges in the close-up shot afterward, however, continue to indicate which way the door should swing.
  • It is very unlikely that Beauregard Sanders could actually have taken part in the Civil War, which ended in 1865, 105 years before "A Night of Fright is No Delight" aired (the last verified Confederate veteran died in 1951 at the age of 104). However, many Southerners then and now have been obsessed with the Civil War, and Beauregard might very well have had himself painted in a Confederate uniform without having actually been a Confederate officer.
  • None of Beauregard's relatives have a problem competing with a dog, or at least aren't very vocal about it.
  • Since the gang did not come with any luggage, it's unknown where Shaggy and Fred got their pajamas from.
  • The goldfish in Beauregard's home should've been removed after his passing, yet still remains in one of the (presumable) guest rooms. After the scene, it's completely forgotten as is typically the case.
  • The first time a Phantom Shadow appears, just before the bath tips, it isn't a shadow. This isn't supposed to be known until later in the episode.
  • Although the boys wear pajamas for bed, the girls remain unchanged. It's unclear where the former got theirs from, or why the latter isn't changed.
  • Velma claims that the dummy Scooby looks just like the real one when it very evidently does not. The only resemblance is the shape of the dummy.
  • When the Gang finds the coffins, Fred says, "The cousins!", when one of them was a nephew, rather than a cousin.
  • When running away from the Green Ghosts, after Scooby faints, the Gang runs to the left through a doorway, dropping Scooby. Shaggy leans back through to wake Scooby up and is then chased by the Green Ghosts, who float through the doorway from the left. Next, the Green Ghosts are in front of them, running to the left again.
  • When priming the wine bottles to fire them at the Phantom, Shaggy says, "Don't fire till you see the green of his eyes," yet the Phantom's eyes are red/orange.
  • How did the cousins escape the island? There were no boats, or any form of transportation for that matter, at least insight, in the scene that overviewed the mansion at the start of the episode, aside from the gang's. The supposed boats may have been docked behind the mansion or out of sight elsewhere, but this seems unlikely since the wooden dock that should have been and is typically used as shown in front of the house, completely unused, in the aforementioned scene.
  • When Velma is running from one of the Green Ghosts, a phone rings and she picks it up. Why would anybody be calling the mansion if nobody lives there anymore? (Perhaps it was a nuisance caller, or, as it sounded, one of the phantoms.)
  • When "flying" on the washing machine, Shaggy proclaims, "I can't steer this crazy machine!", followed immediately by, "We'll take the shortcut", which implies a level of control.
  • Given Colonel Sanders' attorneys should have known the money was Confederate and only worth something as a collectible, their behavior in trying to keep control of the "fortune" makes no sense.
  • Beginning in the late 1980s, Confederate money started being sought after by collectors so Velma's "worthless" comment might puzzle modern viewers of this episode.
  • The flying bone isn't explained. One can only imagine that the mansion really is haunted.
  • It is never established what would happen to the house.

Everlasting influence

  • This episode has been adapted several times in the following decades:

Critical reception

In other languages

Language Name Meaning
Greek Μια Νύχτα Τρόμου δεν είναι Ωραία A Night of Terror is not Nice
Hungarian Örökölni nem öröm Inheritance is no delight
Latin America Spanish Una noche de espanto causa quebranto
Una noche de terror, no es un primor
A night of fright causes brokenness
A night of terror is not a babe
Polish Milion w spadku po upiornym dziadku A million in inheritance after a scary grandfather

Home availability

References

  1. ^ Joe Ruby and Ken Spears. Scooby Addicts.