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May 20, 2007



I always loved the Droopy cartoons. I used to try to do the voice, but I never could get it just right.


Oh BTW I have that Touche Turtle LP to share here:
Touche Turtle The Reluctant Dragon



Nice writeup. The writer behind Fibber, Don Quinn, had a knack for finding voice talent. He discovered Marlin Hurt, who played Beulah, the McGee's black maid. The audience roared when they heard "her" and the lights came up to reveal Hurt, a white guy.

Mike Hobart

Hey, interesting stuff. I never knew that Mr Wimple and Droopy were so closely related.....

Andrew Leal

Great post, but a note re "Blitz Wolf." That's not Thompson as the pig (it's a Pinto Colvig soundalike, I forget who). Rather, he has the juicy role of Adolf Wolf, using a wonderful German accent which he reprised countless times, including "Lady and the Tramp" (where he voiced no less then five ethnic stereotypes!)

By the way, he was heard in at least one "Flintstones" episode, not as Fred, but doing his standard schtick as a sad sack man named "Mr. Slate" (no relation to Fred's future boss) who has had to let a store take his children as collateral while he pays for his pop-up toaster. It's both hilarious and tragic, especially when Thompson's character takes his kids (who "think it's Daddy" but are wavering) and promises that "Momma will make some nice pop-up toast for you."

Listener Kliph

So what you are telling me is that when IMDB sez "Bill Thompson...Third Little Pig, the brick-user/The Wolf (voice) (uncredited)" They are actually making me look like a schmuck again? I thought I would escape this problem this time 'round. Dagnabit. Lousy IMDB.

Priest Morello

The Website Above Is Not Mine But It Is Where You Can Find Photographs

Priest Morello

Jeff Whipple

I rate Bil Thompson right up there with Daws Butler, Don Messick and June Foray as the best voice comics after Mel Blanc. It is amazing how well all of these people could act using just their voices. The beauty of Old Time Radio was that it was live - no re-doing takes until you get it just right - you had to get it right the first time - or ad lib your way out.

Side note - Any plans for a Touche' Turtle release smilar to the Droopy Complete Theatrical Release we got this year? Inspired casting brings both Bill Thompson and Allen Reed (Dum-Dum) for these cartoons.

Rachel Newstead

The person who did the voice for Avery's version of the "practical pig" was actually Pinto Colvig, the voice of Disney's Goofy and--not too coincidentally--the same version who did the "practical pig" voice in Disney's "Three Little Pigs."

Rachel Newstead

Oops...the last line of my previous comment should have read..."the same PERSON who did the 'practical pig' voice in Disney's "Three Little Pigs'. Sorry.

Priest Morello

Here Is A Site Where You Can Get A Profile Of Bill On A PDF Format!thompso.pdf

Priest Morello

On The IMDB It Says He Plays A Veteran In Look Who's Laughing.I Have Look Who's Laughing On VHS,Which Scene.Is He In?

Priest Morello

I Was Reading A Photo I Found Of Bill Thompson.It Says He Was From The Scottish Campbell Argyll Clan

Jay Lichtenauer

I don't know that it is accurate to assume Fibber McGee and Molly moved to 15 minute episodes 5 days a week because of Marian Jordan's alcoholism. Read further down on wikipedia and you'll see that she was also battling cancer.

"Radio historian Gerald S. Nachman has noted the Jordans were ready to renew with NBC for at least three more years when Marian's battle against cancer ended in her death in 1961."

There may have been many other factors that moved them to the recorded format without the live audience. Most other acts like Burns and Allen and Jack Benny added TV in 1950 and eventually dropped radio by 1955. Marian didn't want to do TV for whatever reason but probably due to her health. The move to 15-minute episodes for Fibber McGee and Molly started on October 5, 1953 and the last episode I have of them is in 1959 at which point they were only 3 minute episodes, 5 days a week.

Listener Kliph

Thanks for the clarifications, Jay. Your account sounds accurate. I love channel 1710 by the way, I listen to it at work every night.


The question arises, after reading about a great voice actor like Bill, is where are the greats today? I don't mean the greats of the past and 'where are they now?' Rather, voice actors that really drive home the character(s) and give us (as an audience) a landmark characterization and story-telling voice.

Whether the average person knows it or not, voice over training is alive and well, not to mention it can lead one of those careers that many of us have hidden within us.

Many of the contemporary voice actors have started promising careers through voice acting training, but there's still so much room in the upper-eschelon of the industry for greatness. It's kind of like the thinking that we have a nostalgic past, un-steady present and hopeful look to the future. The point is instead of looking to a nostalgic past, the next great voice actor can be today (while in the future people can look back to 'today' and have that nostagic feeling -- it's like sowing the seeds of nostalgia, today).

Great post -- enjoyed it.


Correction to your lovely post: Bill Thompson did not die of a heart attack, but, of Acute Septic Shock, a complication of the flu.

Jeff Whipple

I just discovered in listening to my collection of Old Time Radio that Bill Thompson was a regular on the Charlie McCarthy Program in 1943. The episodes i have (about 12 from from Feb 1943 to May of 1943) all have a segment from Bill Thompson. For the most part he uses his actual speaking voice (sounds a lot like Alan Young to my ear) and throws in an occassional Horatio K Boomer and Old Timer.

Mike Newton

I have been getting re-acquainted with my old friend Droopy the Dog after so many years. Just caught the cartoon "Wild and Wooley" where he keeps chasing after the wolf bad guy. Finally at the end, the wolf wants to know who is and Droopy replied, "Don't you know, I'm the hero," and clobbers him with a hammer. That's been a running gag all through the film. My question is how come Thompson was not given screen credit for Droopy. I did not see it on this one, but I will check others. Mel Blanc was always given credit for the cartoon voices he did. I would have thought that was part of the contract. If any of your Droopy-philes can answer that question, please contact me at [email protected]. Be waiting to hear from you.

Dads Stash

Mike, very few voice actors at that time got credit. Mel Blanc did because he went to Leon Schlesinger asking for a raise. Schlesinger said "Why would you want a raise? You'll just be in a higher tax bracket. I'll give you credit instead."

It was definitely a contract agreement because other voice actors working with Blanc never got credit, including June Foray, Arthur Q. Bryant, and Stan Freberg. I grew up thinking Blanc did ALL of the voices, but that wasn't the case. So everyone from Donald Duck (Clarence Nash) down to Michigan J. Frog (whose tenor voice's name is lost to history) got no credit until much later in life.

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