Tuesday, July 16, 2013
John Stephenson, The Voice Of My Childhood
In addition to trying to solve the mystery (I just point to everybody as they come on screen and say, "He did it!"), one of the games we wind up playing is "who is that guy again?" Everybody was on Perry Mason at one time or the other, faces you recognize but can't place the name. You know how it is. Our parents used to drive us nuts with this sort of thing, now we drive each other nuts.
Tonight, one of the suspects was a face that for once we didn't recognize—but that voice! We knew that voice. The actor's name was John Stephenson. Do you recognize his face?
How about if I told you he was the voice of these classic cartoon characters?
Mr. Slate (The Flintstones)
Dr. Benton Quest (Jonny Quest)
Fancy-Fancy (Top Cat)
The Sheriff (Scooby Doo, Where Are You!)
... and a whole lot of other voices. He was also the "In a minute, the results of that trial" narrator at the end of Dragnet. In fact, John Stephenson was pretty much the voice of my entire childhood. And the good news is, he's still out there, alive and kicking, still doing voice work. If my math is correct, he'll turn 90 on August 9th. How about that!
I don't know about you, but I feel just a little bit younger knowing he's still with us.
Mr. Stephenson, we here at the Monkey salute you!