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Yo-Yo Man

I had a couple questions about one of the segments on the Old School Volume 2 DVD's. The segment in question is the "Easter Egg" clip of the lost boy who gets help from the Dr. Teeth-like yo-yo man. For those who haven't seen the segment, here's a link: [1]

My question is, who was the animator? I know of a second "Yo-Yo Master" clip featuring "Over Under Around and Through". Check it out: [2]

Anyone know who made them or did the voices? The first yo-yo man sounds somewhat like Dizzy Gillespie (who did do voices for some cartoons). Could it be him? -- Josh MsSwanFan 06:54, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

I didn't know Dizzy Gillespie did cartoon voices. Which ones did he do? I'm not familiar with his cartoon voice, but that video didn't sound anything like the Gillespie I know. —Scott (talk) 16:45, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
From what I've heard, he used his own voice in animation. One cartoon I have on tape credits him as "The Easter Bunny" in "A Family Circus Easter". IMDB (though it has it's faults) lists him as a voice actor on a Hubley Studios film called "The Hat" from 1964.
The voices for the yo-yo man in the two clips are obviously different. It was the first one I was wondering whether or not it was Dizzy. The second one, I have no idea.
Looking at the animation, I have been trying to figure out if any clips relate to them design-wise so that an artist can be credited to them. Anyone care to guess? Josh -- MsSwanFan 20:26, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
There's no info available, just as there isn't for so many of the Sesame inserts. The general look and movement strongly suggest Jeff Hale's Imagination Inc studio (which may or may not have been done by Hale himself; compare to The Ringmaster for character design and Pinball Number Count for the psychadelic sets),and obviously Guillermo agrees (he uploaded the clips); there's no source and its not one of those instances where the visual style is unmistakeable, and moreover many of the bits currently credited on the Wiki to Hale were just done by the studio he headed, not him personally, so I'm reluctant to add it to the articles, but it's a pretty safe bet. The voice in the first clip is most certainly not Gillespie (who worked with the Hubley's only because they often used both jazz music and "realistic" soundtracks; The Family Circus thing was a late career vocal cameo, as happened with a lot of stars). It could be any number of deep-voiced working voice artists of the era (Bill E. Martin, who played the similar Rockman in The Point; Lee Weaver; tons of possibilities). As a general rule, especially in the 1970s, if you think you hear a celebrity voice in a Sesame insert, you probably didn't, and it's either a superficial almost sort of similarity or a partial impression (as a rule, professional voice actors often incorprate and modify aspects of other actor's tones or inflections, especially if asked for it, more often than outright steals or impersonations for parody purposes, which causes aural confusion and cognitive dissonance for many). The inserts were farmed out to different studios around the country and even in Canada and so on, so you hear Hollywood voices (Casey Kasem, Gary Owens, Daws Butler, Hal Smith), New York types (Arnold Stang, Allen Swift), in-house voices (the writers, directors, and friends or relatives of the studio) and occasionally CTW/Sesame people (Jim Henson early on, and in the 1990s, Fran Brill, Kevin Clash, Jim Martin, David Rudman...), and pretty much whoever that particular studio usually turned to (Paul Fierlinger worked with Jim Thurman as writer/voice a lot, the John Korty segments had a troupe of improv actors like Jim Cranna and non-professional children), etc. And in a lot of cases, since the inserts were essentially "commercials," you wouldn't hear either stars or the usual cartoon voices, but people who made their living from TV and radio commercials, or sometimes radio DJs and the like. Only occasionally in the 1990s (Ossie Davis as Anansi; Andrea Martin, Ruth Buzzi) did star voices surface, and usually then they were doing something else for the show at the time anyway.
In the second cartoon, which seems to date a bit later, it's unquestionably the very distinctive (and never imitated) voice of Earl Boen, a character actor best known for playing Dr. Silberman in The Terminator movies but also a long-time voice actor since the 1970s, first as a commercial voice-actor/narrator andthen in a ton of cartoons and video games. He's one of those actors with a distinctive basic pattern who just adopts different dialects, higher or lower registers, and general acting techniques (see also Hans Conried, Arnold Stang, Sterling Holloway, etc.; the plus being there's never any question at all that you're hearing the actor unless they really step out of their range or use a heavy dialect). The "Yo-Yo Man" vocal tone is almost identical, just with a different manner of speaking and slightly lower in spots, to a pirate character he played in the Curse of Monkey Island games. Boen has a distinctive "crackle," heard in "decided it was time to eat," in contrast to the more monotone or steady deadpan used by other actors, including the unknown Yoyo guy voice #1, and after hearing and watching his work (his on-camera voice is much the same, just less broad) and listening to his demos, there's no question at all in this case. Hope all this helps. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 21:48, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

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