Mark Evanier is an American television and comic book writer.
His early television work was mostly in sitcoms, including Welcome Back, Kotter, on which he was a story editor, but he is better known as a writer (and sometimes voice director) of animated series, including Garfield and Friends (of which he wrote nearly every episode), The Garfield Show, Dungeons and Dragons (which he helped develop and wrote the pilot episode of), Thundarr the Barbarian, and Scooby Doo.
For the latter, he had the unenviable job of writing the episode that introduced the infamous Scrappy-Doo. Relating the episode's history in a series of articles called Scrappy Days, he argues that Scrappy's Hatedom is mostly a modern phenomenon, and at the time, the character actually helped keep the show on the air.
In his early years in comics, he worked as a production assistant for Jack Kirby, of whom he has published a biography.
- Elephant in the Living Room: One of Evanier's most hilarious experiences as a TV writer was the day he realized he could ask the producers for anything and they would get it for the show-- even a live elephant. The joke was meant to be that an informercial advertiser didn't notice an elephant in his studio, but it got even funnier when the elephant decided to... Just go read it here.
- Promoted Fanboy: As a boy, Evanier says that he enthusiastically admired comedy writers, cartoonists, and voice actors. No surprises what he grew up to be.
- Also, he was inspired to get into TV comedy writing by The Dick Van Dyke Show.
- Stylistic Suck: Invoked in this story about an Animated Adaptation of the children's book "Mama Don't Allow." The story is about a bad saxophone player, but the professional saxophonist they hired for the part had a very hard time playing badly enough.
- The Complainer Is Always Wrong: Averted hard. In some of his TV scripts in The Eighties, Evanier was forced by Moral Guardians to include this Aesop, which he hated due to its Unfortunate Implications of groupthink. When he had more creative control over his scripts, he took every opportunity to parody it devastatingly. Notably, the characters of "The Buddy Bears" on Garfield and Friends. Currently provides the page quote.