|First appearance||"What a Night for a Knight" (Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! episode, 1969)|
Daphne Blake is a fictional character in the Scooby-Doo franchise. Daphne, depicted as coming from a wealthy family, is noted for her red hair, lavender heels, fashion sense, and her knack for getting into danger, hence the nickname "Danger Prone Daphne". She has appeared in more adaptations than the other characters, aside from Shaggy Rogers and Scooby-Doo.
The Daphne character was inspired by the sophisticated and money-hungry teen character Thalia Menninger, as played by Tuesday Weld, from the late 50s/early 60s American sitcom The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis. Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! shows her birthday to be December 25 to create a personal conflict for her regarding Christmas overshadowing her birthday.
According to Scooby-Doo: Behind the Scenes, Daphne wanted to be both a supermodel and a detective even as a child (the latter of which disappointed her parents). Her aspirations had an effect on her personal life as she was always late for dates whenever she went on mysteries with the gang; she and Fred deny the rumors that they are dating. Her father gave her and her friends the money to start off and, prior to buying the Mystery Machine, Daphne gave her parents gas money to drive to where there were mysteries to be solved.
Together with her other teenage companions, Fred Jones, Velma Dinkley, Shaggy Rogers, and Shaggy's Great Dane, Scooby-Doo, Daphne would engage in solving various mysteries. In the first series, Daphne was portrayed as the beautiful and enthusiastic but clumsy and danger-prone member of the gang (hence her nickname, "Danger-prone Daphne") who always follows her intuition. She serves as the damsel in distress and would occasionally get kidnapped, tied up, gagged, and then left imprisoned. But as the franchise went on, she became a stronger, more independent character, who could take care of herself.
During the series' fourth incarnation, Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo, some of the episodes focused on Daphne. In the episode, "Shiver and Shake, That Demon's a Snake", Daphne buys an idol which is cursed by the snake demon. On the sailboat, the snake demon attacks Daphne and demands an idol to return. In the episode, "The Scary Sky Skeleton", Daphne is reunited with her old friend, Wendy.
In the episode, "I Left My Neck in San Francisco", Daphne becomes sick and she's unable to help the gang to solve the mystery about The Lady Vampire of the Bay. Due to the vampire's look, Daphne's unseen reflection in the mirror, the bat flying around Daphne's bed and herself returning to bed a little later, Scooby, Shaggy and Scrappy are convinced that Daphne is a vampire. When the vampiress is revealed to be Lefty Callahan, Scooby, Shaggy and Scrappy realize they made a mistake with suspecting Daphne and she is feeling well again.
When the original Mystery Inc. group took a hiatus from the franchise in the 80s, Daphne was initially absent too, with the series focusing on the comedy antics of Scooby, Shaggy, and Scrappy. However, when the "Whodunnit?" aspect returned to the series with The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries, Daphne returned, now an accomplished investigator assisted by Shaggy and the two dogs, investigating supernatural occurrences. She continued to help Scooby battle evil forces of the supernatural in the 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo series.
The youthful Daphne portrayed in A Pup Named Scooby-Doo would commonly call upon her butler, Jenkins, to do various tasks. The younger Daphne is shown (along with her parents) to not believe in ghost/monsters/supernatural (one of her catchphrases in that series was "There is no such thing as ghosts (monsters)!), a trait she lacks outside the A Pup Named Scooby-Doo series.
In the movie Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, Daphne as an adult, had a very successful investigative TV series called Coast to Coast with Daphne Blake on a fictional channel called "Americana", which the show had aired on for two seasons. The producer of the show was Fred Jones.
Throughout the various incarnations of the character, there has been speculation that Daphne and Fred had an attraction toward each other. This is emphasized in many of the direct-to-video movies and the TV series Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated. By the time of the second season, they are shown to be actively dating, showing more of his feelings toward Daphne. In the first live-action Scooby-Doo movie, the two initially are just friends with but as the film progresses they begin to develop a romantic interest in each other and briefly kiss after saving Spooky Island. In the sequel Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, they are in a relationship.
- Stefanianna Christopherson (1969–1970; Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! (season one))
- Heather North (1970–1985, 1997, 2003; Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! (season two), The New Scooby-Doo Movies, The Scooby-Doo Show, Scooby-Doo and Scrappy Doo, The New Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Show, The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo, Johnny Bravo, Scooby-Doo! and the Monster of Mexico, Scooby-Doo! and the Legend of the Vampire)
- Kellie Martin (1988–1991; A Pup Named Scooby-Doo)
- Mary Kay Bergman (1998–2000; Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, Scooby-Doo! and the Witch's Ghost, Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders)
- Grey DeLisle (2001–present; all direct-to-video films and series since Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase and What's New, Scooby-Doo?; Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law)
- Sarah Michelle Gellar (2002–2005; Scooby-Doo, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed and Robot Chicken)
- Emily Tennant (2004; Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed (young Daphne in a flashback sequence))
- Adrienne Wilkinson (2004; Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed – The Video Game)
- Kate Melton (2009–2010; Scooby-Doo! The Mystery Begins, Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster)
- Sarah Jeffery (2018, Daphne & Velma)
- Amanda Seyfried (2020, Scoob!)
Her usual appearance in the franchise consists of a purple mini dress, pink pantyhose, purple shoes, and a green scarf. In Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, Scooby-Doo! and the Witch's Ghost, and Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase, she wore a purple and green three-piece suit with matching shoes. In Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders, she wore a purple sleeveless shirt with pink shorts and purple trainers boots or shoes.
As a child, she wore a pink sweater, red skirt, and pink pantyhose with white go-go boots. In The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo, she wore other purple and pink clothes. Some included a purple jumpsuit and a purple dress with a white belt. In Scooby-Doo, she wears various outfits, but mostly a purple/pink dress with pink knee high boots.
Relatives of Daphne, including her four identical sisters, shown during the series' run include:
- George Robert Nedley Blake and Elizabeth Blake: Daphne's parents. In Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated they are named Barty Blake and Nan Blake. Voiced by Frank Welker and Kath Soucie.
- Daisy: Daphne's sister, a doctor. Voiced by Jennifer Hale.
- Dawn: Daphne's sister, a model.
- Dorothy: Daphne's sister, a race car driver.
- Delilah: Daphne's sister, in the Marine Corps. Voiced by Jennifer Hale.
- Uncle Matt Blake: Daphne's uncle, a cattle rancher.
- John "J.J." Maxwell: Daphne's uncle, a movie director.
- Olivia Dervy: Daphne's aunt.
- Jennifer: Daphne's cousin.
- Danica LaBlake: Daphne's cousin, a famous French model. Voiced by Vanessa Marshall.
- Shannon Blake: Daphne's Scottish cousin. Voiced by Grey DeLisle.
- Anne Blake: Daphne's younger cousin in the Scooby-Doo video game.
- Thornton Blake V: Daphne's uncle, owner of a Golf Course near Lake Erie.
Note: Frank Welker, Kath Soucie, and Jennifer Hale voice the Blakes in Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated series, Vanessa Marshall voiced Danica in the What's New, Scooby-Doo? series and Grey DeLisle voiced Shannon in the film Scooby-Doo! and the Loch Ness Monster (direct-to-DVD). Welker also voiced George on A Pup Named Scooby-Doo. The late voice actor Don Messick voiced two of Daphne's uncles: Matthew "Matt" Blake on The Scooby-Doo Show and John Maxwell on Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!.
In other media
Daphne was portrayed by Sarah Michelle Gellar in the film Scooby-Doo and its sequel, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed and voiced in the animated series Robot Chicken. Her husband Freddie Prinze Jr. played Fred in the same films.
In these movies, Daphne and Fred began a relationship in the first that followed on through the second. Unlike the previous incarnation of the character, Gellar's version of Daphne is trained in martial arts during Mystery Inc.'s 2-year-long departure in the first film, as she is tired of being a damsel in distress on every case that she is involved in with the gang. Coincidentally, this subversion of the damsel in distress to a strong female fighter almost mirrors Gellar's widely recognized role of the title character in the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Though in the first movie, she is captured by the masked wrestler Zarkos, she beats him in a fight at the end.
Daphne is portrayed by Kate Melton in the third film Scooby-Doo! The Mystery Begins (released as a TV movie in 2009) and its sequel Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster (which premiered on October 16, 2010). These two movies are prequels to the first two live-action movies and show how the gang met while in high school. Daphne is the president of the drama club at Coolsville High School and the lead in the school musical. It is also revealed that she is the actual owner of the Mystery Machine.
Sarah Jeffery portrayed Daphne in the live-action film Daphne & Velma. This film provided a different origin to how Daphne met the rest of the gang. In this film, Daphne is shown to have met Velma first, and the two of them started solving mysteries before meeting Fred, Shaggy and Scooby.
Members of the fanbase of the original Scooby-Doo speculated that Daphne and Fred Jones had a romantic attraction to one another. The makers of the Scooby-Doo film originally planned to refer to the rumor by including a scene where Fred asks to stay with Daphne, using a toothbrush to imply that he wanted to stay with Daphne for the night. The scene was not included in the final version of the film.
- Evanier, Mark. (July 10, 2002).Post Archived May 14, 2006, at the Wayback Machine on "News from Me" blog for Povonline.com. Retrieved March 27, 2006. Excerpt: "Fred was based on Dobie, Velma on Zelda, Daphne on Thalia and Shaggy on Maynard."
- TV Shows (October 13, 2015). "Harvey Birdman Season 1, Episode 3" – via YouTube.
- "Scooby Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed: The Video Game". Behind The Voice Actors.
- D'Alessandro, Anthony (March 22, 2019). "Warner Bros' Animated Scooby-Doo Finds Its Fred & Daphne In Zac Efron & Amanda Seyfried". Deadline. Retrieved March 22, 2019.
- Breznican, Anthony. "Are hidden meanings present in the 'Scooby-Doo' movie?, Filmmakers and cast members say some hints are there, but won't be understood by children." Philadelphia Inquirer. June 21, 2002. D10 Features Magazine. Retrieved December 12, 2010.
- Sigesmund, B.J. "The Inside Dope." Newsweek. June 14, 2002. Available at Lexis-Nexis.