What’s Up, Doc: New Two-Part Podcast Explores the Life of Mel Blanc, “The Man of a Thousand Voices”

Mel Blanc in 1978.
Mel Blanc in 1978.
Phil Rudge/Evening Standard/Getty Images

If you haven't heard of Mel Blanc before, you’ve definitely heard him. Nicknamed “The Man of a Thousand Voices,” Blanc brought countless now-classic cartoons to life by voicing characters like The Flintstones Barney Rubble, The Jetsons’ Mr. Spacely, and many seminal Looney Tunes mainstays, including Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, and Daffy Duck.

Twenty Thousand Hertz, a podcast dedicated to exploring some of the world’s most recognizable sounds, just released the first of two episodes that delve into Blanc's life and career, from his beginnings as a musician in Portland, Oregon, to his lasting effects on the animation industry as a whole.

Though Blanc passed away in 1989, the first 28-minute episode is interspersed with sound bites of past interviews and clips from the cartoons themselves, which help showcase just how talented he was. Blanc’s vocal range covered eight octaves, and he estimated that he did about 400 different voices over the course of 5000 cartoons.

Also featured in the episode are interviews with Blanc’s son, Noel; Bob Bergen, a prolific voice actor who sat in on one of Blanc’s recording sessions when he was a teenager; and Debi Derryberry, who has voiced more than 250 animated characters, including Jimmy Neutron, during her decades-long career.

You can listen to the episode on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. And while you’re waiting for part two to drop, feel free to check out past episodes on the music of Seinfeld, the story behind AOL’s “You’ve got mail” sound, and more. Twenty Thousand Hertz is hosted by Dallas Taylor, creative director of sound design and mix studio Defacto Sound.

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

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Larry David Shared His Favorite Episode of Seinfeld

Larry David at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2009.
Larry David at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2009.
David Shankbone, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY 3.0

Last week, Seth Meyers hosted a virtual Seinfeld reunion with Larry David, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Jason Alexander to benefit Texas Democrats. Amid all the other reminiscing, the sitcom veterans got to talking about their favorite episodes of the show.

Louis-Dreyfus answered with “The Soup Nazi,” in which her character Elaine inadvertently causes the greatest (and most high-strung) soup chef in town to shut down his shop. For Alexander, it was “The Marine Biologist,” where his character George masquerades as a marine biologist on a date and ends up rescuing a beached whale.

Larry David’s response, “The Contest,” generated almost as much conversation as the episode itself did when it aired during season 4. In it, the show’s four main characters compete to see who can abstain from self-pleasure the longest, proving themselves to be the “master of their domain.” Though the actors managed to skirt around the word masturbation for the entire episode, the concept was still pretty provocative for network television.

“This one, I didn’t even put on the board because I didn’t want them asking. I just wanted them to come and see the read-through,” David said, as InsideHook reports. “[When they did] I had worked myself up into a lather because the read-through really went great. I was watching [the network executives] and I couldn’t tell how much they liked it. But I was ready to pack the whole thing in if they didn’t let us do this show: ‘I’m quitting. I’m quitting. I’m gonna quit.’ Fortunately, they didn’t say a word. I was shocked.”

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Louis-Dreyfus’s trepidation about the episode lasted through the shoot. “When we were making this episode, I was convinced we were going to be shut down. I was convinced that the network was going to come in and say, ‘This is not going to work out,’” she said. Needless to say, they never did, and Louis-Dreyfus now looks back on Elaine’s participation in the contest as “a very important cultural moment for women.”

David went on to explain that “The Contest” not only helped popularize Seinfeld among viewers, but it also helped its creators carry more clout in the industry. “That show changed something about how we were perceived in television land,” he said. “It really catapulted us to another place. It moved us to another level, I think.”

[h/t InsideHook]