At the Warner Bros. Discovery Upfront presentation, Mindy Kaling took the stage to showcase the upcoming animated series Velma with one big change to the lead character.
In the first look at Kaling’s adult animation comedy Velma, which is a spinoff of the popular Scooby-Doo cartoons, the audiences got their first glimpse at the reimagined Velma Dinkley. “Hopefully you noticed my Velma is South Asian,” Kaling told the crowd. “If people freak out about that, I don’t care.” Aside from the new look for the titular character, the spinoff certainly looks more gruesome than anything we’ve seen in the past.
While this is the first glimpse we’ve gotten at the upcoming series, it’s not the first there is information about the reimaging for Velma. Last summer, it was announced Velma would be South Asian. Unfortunately, there was a lot of backlash for this from fans of the original cartoon.
Earlier, Kaling addressed the backlash by saying, “ I just couldn’t understand how people couldn’t imagine a really smart, nerdy girl with terrible eyesight, and who loved to solve mysteries, could be Indian.”
The new animated series was announced in early 2021 for HBO Max with Mindy Kaling billed as both executive producer and the voice of the titular character. Velma is part of the streaming service’s push for more adult animation. Velma tells the origin story of Velma Dinkley, the bespeckled brains of the Scooby Doo Mystery Inc. gang.
In a statement from HBO last year, they called the series “an original and humorous spin that unmasks the complex and colorful past of one of America’s most beloved mystery solvers.”
Based on the image teased for Velma, the series definitely seems to be leaning more toward an adult-themed audience. In it, Velma stands at the front of a crowd overlooking a person with the top of their head and brain missing.