This Is Why You Don’t Advertise Movies In Schools

April 9, 2004

Right now there is a “children’s” movie in the theaters that features a main character abusing inhalants. “Huffing” is the term and it is a real problem for a growing number of children. Huffing kills kids. It is irresponsible for a movie aimed at kids to normalize inhalant abuse.

The movie is “Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed.”

It was advertised on Channel One News.

It was advertised to high school students and middle school students.

The movie was heavily promoted on Channel One’s web site. Channel One News ran a contest to encourage children to see the movie.

Obligation’s Jim Metrock said, “Channel One News never previews movies that they advertise on their show. Channel One executives are too lazy, too insensitive and too greedy to dare preview a movie. They don’t want to know what is in the movies they advertise, because if they knew, they would have to turn down some ad revenue and ad revenue is in short supply at Channel One. Principals and teachers can’t preview these movies either because they are usually advertised before they premiere. Schools may have legal liability if they continue to help Hollywood pitch their movies to a captive audience of students. What happens if a 12-year-old boy becomes brain damaged because he copied the huffing he saw in the movie his middle school repeatedly encouraged him to see? If a school had Channel One News in March 2004, then that school indirectly promoted inhalant abuse.”

Some comments about Channel One News-advertised “Scooby-Doo” movie:

From the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools:

April 6, 2004 – Scooby Doo Movie Criticized for Showing Nitrous Oxide ‘Huffing’  Charging that Warner Brothers’ new kid movie, “Scooby Doo 2—Monsters Unleashed” includes a segment showing the character Shaggy inhaling nitrous oxide from a whipped cream can, the National Inhalant Prevention Coalition alerted its members last week to check the episode out with their children and to try to make sure it is deleted from future releases of the film.


From (a conservative web site):

April 5, 2004
Huffing and Puffing Blake Wylie spotlights the unconscionable decision by Warner Bros. to include a scene in the new Scooby Doo 2 movie that portrays “huffing” – inhaling nitrous oxide – in a humorous light. Wylie provides a link to a clip from the movie. In the scene, “Shaggy” huffs nitrous oxide from a whipped cream can. What’s so bad about that? Huffing can kill you – and its incidence among children is on the rise. I’m going to say this as plain as I can: If one child sees the new Scooby Doo 2 movie and is motivated by the scene to inhale nitrous oxide from a whipped cream can, and is injured or killed, Warner Bros. will have blood on its hands. It used to be that “kids’ movies” were really okay for kids, but this movie actually endangers children. Do not let your children see this movie.


from WindyCity Media Group: Scooby Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed (Universal): The de-dyking of Velma (Linda Cardellini), the frumpy, brainy and bespectacled member of the crime-solving group Mystery, Inc. continues in this sequel to the live action, big-screen adaptation of the popular ‘70s Hanna-Barbera cartoon. Coolsonian Museum curator Patrick (Seth Green) is the object of her affections (and suspicions), and when she isn’t distracted by trying to track down the array of monsters and ghosts that are taking over Coolsville, Velma finds the time to slip into a noisy red leather jumpsuit for the purposes of seduction. Adding insult to injury is blatant product placement (from the tarnished crown of Burger King) and a scene in which the computer-generated dog Scooby Doo and his “human” counterpart Shaggy (Matthew Lillard) are huffing a can of whipped cream, making this “monstrosity” inappropriate for discriminating children and adults. (D-)


April 05, 2004
A PUBLIC SERVICE MESSAGE. IMPORTANT. It is important that you take the following into consideration before you take your kids to see Scooby Doo 2.

Reports are coming into the NIPC, NATIONAL iNHALANT PREVENTION COALITION that the new Warner Brothers’, PG rated, Scooby Doo movie, “Scooby-Doo 2, Monsters Unleashed,” has a scene with Shaggy huffing nitrous oxide from a whipped cream can for “fun” (one Mom told me she saw this in the movie’s trailer on a Saturday morning during a cartoon TV show, see link below). On March 26th, the Saint Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press newspaper reported “… but they still can’t resist having Shaggy huff spray-can fumes …” This movie promotes inhalant abuse. I and other parents who are concerned of the prevalence and seriousness of inhalant abuse in children and teens strongly recommend that you not let your children see this movie. If you absolutely insist that they see it, be prepared to have a serious talk about the dangers of inhalant abuse with them.

Drug abuse is no laughing matter. It can injure, maim, and even kill, regardless of age. It can destroy families and lives. Please send a message to Hollywood – we will not condone such portrayals of drug abuse in our entertainment! Posted by pietro at


April 6, 2004
Scooby Doo Bill Hobbs has more on the Scooby Doo inhalation scene that I mentioned here. If you’ll remember, in the first Scooby Doo movie several scenes were edited out of the final cut to make the movie more children-friendly which included a possible drug-reference of Shaggy and Scooby getting high.”

We played on all those things,” said actor Matthew Lillard, who portrays creaky-voiced Shaggy. “Is Velma gay? Is Shaggy high? Are ( Fred and Daphne) hooking up? All those jokes were in there, but we found at the end of the day it was more important to go the other way … and that was to be more family oriented.”

That was the first Scooby Doo. Now comes the sequel, and the fact remains that this movie is still marketed toward kids. When you take on that role, you have to act responsibly. Bill Hobbs referenced a good excerpt from Phoebe Flowers in the Sun-Sentinel. Monsters Unleashed is a kids’ movie, which explains its frenetic pacing. It feels, at times, like a prototype for a theme-park ride. But that doesn’t explain its multiple examples of bad influences. This is not the sort of movie to which you really want to bring an impressionable child, unless you’re cool with your elementary-schooler learning about recreational nitrous oxide inhalation or the ignition of flatulence. You should not take your kids to go see this movie. It’s as simple as that.


**Is Scooby Doo Sending the Wrong Message?  Warner Brothers’ new movie, “Scooby Doo 2, Monsters Unleashed,” reportedly has a scene with Shaggy huffing nitrous oxide from a whipped cream can for fun — a dangerous image for children that ignores the deathly potential, warns the National Inhalant Prevention Coalition. For more information, E-mail Harvey Weiss at

Tags: , ,