Don't believe the hate. After six episodes, HBO Max's Velma is, quite plainly, a very good show.
Episodes five and six of the controversial and much-hated animated series Velma aired yesterday, showing even more evidence that the show's many haters are at best misguided, and at worst, maliciously misleading.
The two episodes, which advanced the show's plot and fleshed out its characters, focused on Norville's new girlfriend and Daphne trying to solve the mystery of her birth parents. Fans of the original series who were hoping for more mysteries should love these episodes.
The episodes also introduced the team's missing member Scooby Doo, who in this series lends his name to S.C.O.O.B.I., (Special COvert Operations Brain Initiative) a secretive project worked on by Norville's mad scientist grandmother. "What did S.C.O.O.B.I. do?" Velma asks in a hilarious joke.
With all the secrets revealed in this episode, Velma is picking up steam and becoming one of the most fun and exciting weekly watches on TV.
While many complaints surrounding the show have focused on the humor, the cringe jokes are becoming fewer and fewer with each episode. In fact, I think I only cringed at one joke over the two episodes.
At the same time, the laugh-out-loud jokes are getting more numerous. Jokes about high school band sleepovers, Fred's misguided journey into feminism after reading The Feminist Mystique ("Ooh, I love Mystique!" he says, referencing the X-Man villain when picking up the book), Velma's daddy issues, and her queerness are all top-notch, leaving my friends and I laughing throughout the episodes.
As Velma continues to air, it's all coming together in increasingly fun and clever ways. The more I get to know these characters, the more I love them. Even Velma herself, who is objectively terrible, has earned some love. And both the animation and voice acting continue to shine, being some of the best in adult cartoons.
I truly feel like I have entered bizzaroland when I read negative takes and reviews for Velma. Over the last decade we've seen dozens and dozens of truly terrible, bottom-of-the-barrel adult animated shows -- but this is not one of them.
Some of the most popular adult animated series like Big Mouth, Rick and Morty, Solar Opposites, and American Dad are all vastly more ugly and harder to watch than Velma. Where Velma has fun and unique character designs and beautiful animation, those shows all look like they were scraped from the bottom of the same pair of boots.
Every animated rip-off of shows like those (which can be argued are actually funny and well-written) has a groan-worthy joke every other minute and zero jokes that actually make you laugh out loud, making them not just ugly to look at, but also terribly written and unfunny.
But those shows have been ignored while Velma has been hated with the passion of a thousand angry incels.
What's the difference between this show and those? People think this show is created by a brown woman who likes to talk. And they are looking for any excuse to hate on a woman like that.
Mindy Kaling, who serves as an executive producer and voices the main character, has been receiving much of the hate for the series, despite the fact that she did not create it, design the characters, or write the episodes.
Maybe if people can get over their hate for Kaling (which there are certainly some fair criticisms of her), they can actually watch the show for what it is and finally find themselves enjoying an afternoon full of laughs, queerness, and teen mysteries. I know that's what I'll be doing every Thursday when new episodes come out.
RELATED | Velma Is Much Better Than Haters & Trolls Want You to Believe