The following article also appears in the April edition of Colectivo Coffee‘s “Off The Record” periodical/poster/crossword puzzle. Stay at home and download a PDF of this month’s edition HERE.
Milwaukee and Bob Uecker: name a more iconic duo. The ubiquitous “Mr. Baseball” is should be currently celebrating his 50th year behind the mic. But he’s more than the voice of the Milwaukee Brewers—he is, in the words of DC superhero Cyborg, “a former professional baseball player who played six season in the majors before going on to have a successful career as a sportscaster and actor, starring in many iconic film and TV roles, including Harry Doyle in Major League and George Owens in Mr. Belvedere.”
Wait, what? Yes, Uecker’s acting career has brought him in contact with everyone from Charlie Sheen, Scott Bakula (in the truly awful Major League: Back To The Minors), AND an animated kids version of Cyborg. And Batman sidekick Robin. And some obnoxiously adorable puppies. Let’s explore Bob Uecker’s kid-friendly, animated voice-over work, shall we?
TEEN TITANS GO!
What happens when the Teen Titans are super stoked for Beast Boy’s birthday party, but Robin wants them to go to HIS birthday party (even though it’s not really his birthday)? The Boy Wonder sweetens the deal by inviting none other than Bob Uecker to his shindig. “Who’s Bob Uecker?” asks Raven. “WHO’S BOB UECKER?!” Cyborg exclaims, before running down Ueck’s career highlights.
Yes, Uecker is all over this 2018 Teen Titans Go! episode, and he’s brilliant. When Cyborg presses him for some Belvedere trivia, Uecker delivers the immortal line: “No, Kevin did not grow up to be Marilyn Manson. You’re thinking of that nerd from Wonder Years.” When Beast Boy brings a pony to his party, Robin counters by riding Uecker like a horse. (“It’s in the contract,” Ueck sighs.) And when the Teen Titans blow Robin off, Uecker tries to cheer the little guy up by offering to take him out for frozen custard. Oh, and in the end he helps Robin splice his DNA with animal DNA “in an effort to become the ultimate party animal.” Incredible.
PUPPY DOG PALS
“Take Me Out To The Pug Game”
If you have a child between the ages of 0 and 3, you’re surely familiar with the toxically cute Puppy Dog Pals. It’s the ultimate “just put something on so they’ll shut up for 15 minutes” kind of kids show. It’s also created by comedian Harland Williams, a.k.a. the “7 Minute Abs” guy from There’s Something About Mary. Weird.
Anyway, Uecker is only heard—not seen—in this 2017 episode, yet he still makes an impression. “Hello baseball fans, and welcome to Teddy Peppercorn day!” Ueck says over the ballpark PA. You see, Bingo and Rolly have chased down their owner’s prized Teddy Peppercorn baseball after it flew out the window and bounced around town, and now the elderly Teddy Peppercorn has signed the ball and knocked it out of the park, so the Puppy Dog Pals have to chase it down again and…well, you should just watch it yourself. Or, on second thought, unless you have a 2-year-old, stay as far away from this gratingly lovable show as possible.
“A Leela Of Her Own”
Does Bob Uecker’s disembodied-yet-still-announcing head in a jar count? Sure! Does Futurama fit this article’s criteria of “kid-friendly”? Nah, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t include this classic 2002 episode anyway. Gosh, we miss blernsball.