TRANSCRIPT Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Remembering Jessica Walter

We lost an incredible actor last month: Jessica Walter. She was 80 years old, her family says she passed away in her sleep. Her career spanned over six decades. She’s starred in hundreds of on screen performances, from Arrested Development, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, The Love Boat, and Trapper John, M.D. to a starring role in Clint Eastwood’s directorial debut Play Misty for Me. We’re taking a moment to remember the brilliant Jessica Walter by revisiting our conversation from 2014. At the time she was promoting the latest season of the animated show Archer. She talked about her voice work on the program, her love of Lucille Bluth and working with Clint Eastwood. Walter’s family has asked that in lieu of flowers, for fans of her to send their support to the charity Guiding Eyes for the Blind, which is an organization that helps train seeing-eye dogs.

Guests: Jessica Walter

Transcript

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Speaker: Bullseye with Jesse Thorn is a production of MaximumFun.org and is distributed by NPR. [Music fades out.]

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“Huddle Formation” from the album Thunder, Lightning, Strike by The Go! Team. A fast, upbeat, peppy song. Music plays as Jesse speaks, then fades out.

jesse thorn

It’s Bullseye. I’m Jesse Thorn. Jessica Walter died last month. She was 80 years old. Her family says she passed away in her sleep. In a career that spanned over 60 years, she played more than 120 parts onscreen. So, the odds are you’ve seen Jessica Walter in something. Maybe it was as Lucille Bluth on Arrested Development. Or opposite Clint Eastwood in Play Misty for Me. Or maybe you heard her voice as Malory Archer on the animated show Archer. That’s a personal favorite of mine. You’ll hear more about her many, many credits in a second. We’re gonna replay my 2014 interview with Jessica Walter, but I just wanna say that she was an absolute treasure. It was such an honor to speak with her and she was as generous and kind and warm as you could hope from her performances. Anyway, here we go. From 2014, my interview with the late Jessica Walter.

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jesse

It’s Bullseye. I’m Jesse Thorn. The casting call for the part of Malory Archer, on FX’s animated comedy Archer, said the creators were looking for—this is a quote—“A Jessica Walter on Arrested Development type.” So, needless to say, when Jessica Walter from Arrested Development’s agent got it, she called her client. No audition was necessary. Walter’s character, Malory Archer, is the owner of an independent spy agency. Her son, Sterling, is the agency’s greatest spy. He’s a little bit like 007 if 007 sort of had to deal with the fallout from all of his sex and drinking and indiscriminate violence. In this scene from the show, Sterling—the son—is confronted by his mother, played by my guest Jessica Walter. He thinks he might have figured out who his father is, and he thinks that that father might be the head of a rival spy agency. Or a different head of a different rival spy agency.

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[The sound of a blade being sharpened.] Malory (Archer): [Angrily.] Well, if you’d let me! Sterling: [Yelling.] Yeah! Tell me how my father might be Nikolai Jakov, head of the KGB! Malory: I just— Sterling: Or Len Trexler, head of ODIN! I assume those are my only choices. [Beat.] Malory: [Clears throat.] Sterling: Oh my—who else?! Malory: Gene Krupa. Sterling: What?! Malory: No, wait! Sterling: THE DRUMMER?! Malory: Not Krupa, the other one with the teeth! [Beat.] Buddy Rich. Sterling: [Horrified.] Oh my— Malory: I could never say no to a drummer. Sterling: Could you say no to anybody?! [A loud slap.] Malory: [Coldly.] I said no to plenty.

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jesse

[Laughing.] Walter’s most recognized these days for playing Lucille Bluth on Arrested Development, but she also starred in Clint Eastwood’s Play Misty for Me, Sidney Lumet’s The Group, and literally hundreds of television shows and plays and basically everything else an actor can do over her 50-some years of acting. It’s such a pleasure to have you on the show, Jessica. Thanks for coming on.

jessica walter

Thank you. Thank you, it’s a pleasure to be here. [They chuckle.] That made me laugh, that clip. I forgot about it.

jesse

It’s funny. Adam Reed was on the show—he’s the creator of Archer—and he was on a year two ago and one of the things that he told me: Archer is a very vulgar program.

jessica

Racy. We say—we don’t say vulgar. We say racy.

jesse

Okay. It is a—it is—I would say that it is both racy and vulgar. [Laughs.] It’s both of those things! And he told me that he wasn’t 100% sure you knew all of the racy things you were saying and that he would have felt bad if he told you what they were. I’m paraphrasing from memory. But—

jessica

I know what you’re talking about. No, ‘cause I don’t. I—half the stuff, I don’t know what they’re talking about and I just say, “Give me a line reading.” Which, of course, you know most—is verboten. You never give actors line reads. [Laughing.] But some of them I don’t want to know what they mean. So, he gives me line readings.

jesse

But I presume you know who Buddy Rich is?

jessica

Oh, well—I thought you meant the racy stuff. Of course. You know, my husband is a drummer, Ron Leibman. So, yeah. I thought you meant the racy stuff. Like, there was one recently: “Boom chicka boom boom,” it was written. And I said, “What is thaaat?” And Adam said—he said it’s a porn signature or something. So, I said, “Well, just—I don’t wanna know. Just do it and I’ll imitate it.” [Jesse chuckles.] And he did it.

jesse

You went to the LaGuardia High School in New York—which was and is the sort of great performing arts high school of the United States. Did you go with the intent of making your life as an actor? When you were—you know—13 or 14 years old? However old you were when you decided where to go to high school?

jessica

You know, in my day it was called High School of the Performing Arts. It became LaGuardia way later. I always wanted to be an actress and I auditioned for PA—we called it PA—with that in mind and when I—yeah, in those days it was—high school was grades 9, 10, 11, and 12. So, I had four years there. And absolutely wanted to continue and persevere and did.

jesse

What was the first big part you got in high school?

jessica

In high school, I sort of became a heroine, because they were doing Cinderella and—a play, adapted play or something of Cinderella—and the woman playing the wicked stepmother got sick at the last moment. So, I—who wasn’t even in the senior class—you know, jumped in and learned the part, like, overnight. And that was my first big part in PA.

jesse

And were you typecast for a lifetime? [Chuckles.]

jessica

Yes! Hey! Good point! [They laugh.] I think—I never thought of it that way! But I think I was! Yeah! True. Oh dear!

jesse

I was reading—I was reading interviews with you that you’d done around Arrested Development and around Archer and a lot of folks asked you about being cast in those roles and then I happened upon this interview with you and your husband from People Magazine, in the mid-1980s, when you were—when you were newly married. [Jessica affirms.] And one of the things they mentioned was the way that your voice and the fact that you were sort of tall and beautiful got you cast as mean moms, starting from when you were like in your early 30s. [Chuckles.]

jessica

It’s true. You know something? I—the first person that I ever played mother to was Kim Cattrall, the beautiful, wonderful actress. And I was 36 and she was, like, 23. [Jesse chuckles.] Now go figure.

jesse

You’ve played basically 10,000 roles, especially in the sixties, seventies, and eighties on TV. And so, we just—I mean, we were just sort of going through your filmography and we just picked something.

jessica

Uh-oh.

jesse

This description was written by my producer, Julia. “Here’s Jessica Walter as a saloon girl in The Name of the Game, a series from the late 1960s and early 1970s.” So, let’s take a—let’s take a listen to you on this Western, The Name of the Game.

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Allie (The Name of the Game): Marshal. You wanted to see me? Marshal: I wanna talk to you about your morals, Allie. Allie: I don’t understand. Marshal: I’ve heard that you’ve been consorting with a man. Have you been letting a man come into your room after dark? Allie: Just you, Je—[correcting herself] Marshal. [Several people laugh.]

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jesse

Do you even—do you remember that particular one?

jessica

You know, I think I do, but that I ever got a job after that— [They both burst into laughter.] —is amazing! But that was Warren Oates, a wonderful, wonderful character actor who died way before he should have.

jesse

One of the great roles in your career was Play Misty for Me, Clint Eastwood’s first feature film—

jessica

Right. Directorial—yeah.

jesse

—as a director. It’s from 1971. Eastwood starred in it. He was a radio DJ, for folks who don’t remember, at a jazz station in Carmel. And you were a woman who called in regularly to the show and he sort of realized was a stalker. And so, we’re gonna listen to a scene—we’re gonna listen to a scene from the film. So, in this scene—

jessica

I hope it’s better than the last thing you played! [They laugh.] Okay.

jesse

In this scene, Clint Eastwood’s character, Dave, hasn’t heard from your character, Evelyn, for a while. And as we tune in, he’s on the air, on the radio station.

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Music: Bright, brassy music. Dave (Play Misty for Me): Carmel, Dave Garner. Hello? Evelyn: Play “Misty” for me. [Beat.] David? [Music cuts off as the scene swaps to Evelyn. The sounds of traffic and rain filter in. As the conversation continues, the music cuts in and out as focus shifts back and forth between the two characters.] Evelyn: I didn’t mean to shake you up. I’m sorry. Pretty stupid of me. I’ve been released. Therapy. It was a bad dream, but it’s over. Dave: Where are you? Evelyn: The airport, San Francisco. I’ve only got a minute or two between planes. Got a job in Hawaii. Dave: You’re alright then, huh? Evelyn: Fine, David. Fine. I just wanna say how sorry I am about everything. Dave: Forget it. I have. Evelyn: I hope so. Because this maiden, she lived with no other thought than to love and be loved by you. Dave: Are you near a radio? Evelyn: No. But play it for me anyway.

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jesse

I used to work at the opera in San Francisco when I was in high school, and the stagehands there would work on movies when it wasn’t opera season. And because Clint Eastwood lived closer to Northern California, he shot a lot of movies in Northern California and they worked on a lot of Clint Eastwood movies. And they would talk mess about everyone else they worked with and just, you know, complain and make jokes and so on and so forth. And then whenever they said anything about Clint Eastwood, they would visibly straighten up and refer to him as Mr. Eastwood. Out of just this deep, profound love and respect that you could just see shining in their eyes. How was it—what was it like to work with this guy when he was—you know, I mean obviously he was already—obviously he was already a hugely successful actor, but this was his first film as a director.

jessica

He was a wonderful—he is—a wonderful person and was just the perfect director for me. He just had faith that he had hired the right people. His crews stayed very loyal to him. You know? People from way back then are still on his crews. He’s just a lovely human being and very smart, as a director. Very smart. It—my luck, my good fortune to be in that movie. I never auditioned for it. We met, we talked about—you know—carrot juice and whatever and organic vegetables in his little office there at Universal and the next day I got a call. You know—got a call that I had the part. I—what can I tell you?

jesse

Were you afraid about—I mean, not that you would question taking it, but were you afraid about taking on a part like that…

jessica

Afraid? Oh no. No. Not afraid at all! It was a wonderful role, wonderful! And you know, I just immediately related to the material. [Chuckles.] The thing about that woman is that people, I guess, could relate to the story. We’ve all had our hearts broken by relationships that didn’t work out and we all have those feelings of rage and anger and revenge that we wanna—you know—wreak upon those people. And we can’t do it. So, I think when people see characters like that, they—that’s where I think the thing about—you wanna be the kind of character that people love to hate. Although, that—never was I afraid of that role.

jesse

Let’s talk a little bit about Arrested Development—what with it being one of the great television programs of our time. I’ll play a clip. [Jessica agrees.] I’ll start by playing a clip from the show. So, this is a kind of a classic Lucille scene from the original run of the show. And it demonstrates Lucille’s… uh, her single-minded devotion to the things that she is interested in and devoted to and her obliviousness to everything else. So, in this scene Michael—who is Lucille’s son and is played by Jason Bateman—comes into her apartment and he finds her in the kitchen.

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Lucille (Arrested Development): Who let you in? Michael: Your new cleaning woman. What happened to Luz? Lucille: Supposedly, Luz had to take her daughter to the hospital. That’s Lupe, her sister. Michael: Oh god, I hope she’s okay. Lucille: She’s awful. Can barely wash a dish. Uh-oh. He better not walk through here after she’s been in there. [Calling out to Lupe] Tell me you’ve got an exit strategy! Michael: Mother. Lucille: Oh please. They didn’t sneak into this country to be your friends. Michael: [Beat.] Wow. Lucille: Don’t you judge me. You’re the selfish one. You’re the one who charged his own brother for a Bluth frozen banana. I mean, it’s one banana, Michael. What could it cost? Ten dollars? Michael: You’ve never actually set foot in a supermarket, have you? Lucille: I don’t have time for this.

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jessica

[Jesse laughs.] I’m so glad you like it. That’s our writing staff that we had, Mitch Hurwitz and our brilliant writers. Believe me, if it ain’t on the page, it ain’t on the stage. That I can tell you.

jesse

I—I—man, there are just some great just straight joke-jokes in that show. Just that misdirection about, “Oh, she can barely clean a dish.” [Jessica laughs and agrees.] You could put that—that would be the best joke in any episode of any sitcom ever. [Jessica expresses surprise.] Just drop it right in. You know what I mean?

jessica

Oh my god—that’s a—we have such great writers on that show.

jesse

Let me ask you, what did you think of as being—you know—the things that Lucille Bluth wanted in those stories on Arrested Development? Like, what was she shooting for?

jessica

You know, Lucille—unlike Malory Archer in Archer, who is a self-made woman whose money she made for herself and whose success is based on her own abilities—Lucille is not self-made and her whole M.O. is to keep up the lifestyle that she’s been used to, and the money, and the maids, the Lupes and the Esmeraldas. And the thing about—I think the conflict for Lucille is to keep that going and somehow, you know, try to be a good mom and… she’s really—it’s hard to explain, but she’s very desperate. And I think if you don’t have desperation in comedy, it’s not funny. I think that’s why our show, Arrested Development, is so—grabs people, because of the desperation of all the characters. You know? Michael is—the Jason Bateman character—is so desperate to keep his family together and to have people love each other and get along. It’s the real true example of dysfunctional family at its height, those people. And I think that’s what makes it funny. And Lucille—you know, if she can’t keep that lifestyle going, she has nothing.

jesse

It’s funny, because you think of a dysfunctional family—especially in entertainment—as a family that fights all the time, a family that hates each other. And what I hear you describing and what I see on the screen in Arrested Development, with Lucille, is she’s this character who wants to love her family, wants to be the perfect mother, and is simply just wrong about how to go about doing that. And just blinded by her having, you know, lost her footing underneath her—which is someone to hand her a drink at all times and, you know, someone with a feather duster at all times and so on and so forth.

jessica

Absolutely. You’re absolutely right. You said it, actually, better than I did. So, I’ll have to think about what that means. [Chuckles.] That you understand it better than I do! You articulate it better than I do. Yeah, exactly right. Exactly. And she says—she says, “[Gasps.] I love all my children equally! [Beat. Clicks tongue.] I don’t care for Gob.” You know, she just doesn’t know when to stop. You know what I mean? [Jesse chuckles.] And it’s when something moves—you know, that moves her happens or whatever, she says—this is one of my favorite lines—“I feel like crying, but I can’t spare the moisture.” [Jesse laughs.] Now that’s great writing! That is great writing! I can’t take any credit for that. [Laughs.]

jesse

I think the really central relationship for Lucille—even above and beyond her relationship with her husband or her relationship with Jason Bateman’s character, who is sort of the center of the show—is her relationship with her son Buster.

jessica

[Wistfully.] Aw, yeah, Buster. My Buster.

jesse

And Buster is a sort of very sweet, childish character. And he’s—yeah, I mean, he basically acts like a baby. [Chuckles.]

jessica

Very dependent. Very dependent on Mom. And she enables that, because she needs to have that in her life. She needs to feel that someone really needs her that blindly and openly. But you know, in the final episodes there on Netflix that were recently run and are still on Netflix, they—it comes to a conclusion where, you know, Lucille tells Buster he’s got to grow up and that she can’t be the—you know, the giant hand, quote/unquote—‘cause he has a big giant fake hand, for those listeners that don’t know what I’m talking about. She can’t be that anymore.

jesse

Well, his other hand got bit off. It’s a long story.

jessica

His hand, yeah—his hand got bitten off by a loose seal (Lucille). L-O-O-S-E S-E-A-L. How’s that for writing?

jesse

[Struggling not to laugh.] I don’t know, B-. [Laughs.]

jessica

That’s pretty—that’s pretty interesting!

jesse

I’m laughing pretty loud, though, to be criticizing it. [They laugh.]

jessica

But that’s—you know! And she lets him go. She says, “You’ve gotta go,” in these latest episodes.

jesse

We’ll have the rest of my interview with Jessica Walter in just a moment. Stay with us. It’s Bullseye, from MaximumFun.org and NPR.

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jesse

Welcome back to Bullseye. I’m Jesse Thorn. Right now, we’re looking back on the life and work of Jessica Walter, who died last month at 80. Walter was a brilliant actor who played in hundreds of film and television roles. You might know her best as Lucille Bluth on Arrested Development. She also voiced Malory Archer on the animated series Archer. She and I talked in 2014. Let’s play another clip from Archer. [Jessica agrees.] Which, incidentally, I have—I will never hesitate to say this on the air—is one of my absolute favorite television programs. Maybe my favorite TV show going on right now.

jessica

Oh, wow! That’s a compliment!

jesse

Couldn’t love it more. So, this is from the new season, which—in which, essentially the entire team is forced to stop being spies. And this is the instigating incident. They’ve all been arrested. They’re all in separate holding cells and they’ve all vowed not to throw the other ones under the bus by volunteering any information. They’ve all volunteered information. But luckily, two of them—Archer and Lana—have volunteered information as part of a ruse that ends up—you know, they end up breaking everyone else out. And so, everyone is in the hallway about to bust your character, Malory, out of this interrogation room. And then, you know, try and figure everything out. And that’s the point where we pick up. Your character is in the interrogation room and you seem to be about to confess to everything in exchange for immunity.

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Music: Ominous, suspenseful music. [A crash.] Sterling (Archer): [Yelling.] Nobody move! Or— Malory: What the hell are you doing?! Sterling: Getting us out of here! Malory: I’ve already done that! Let him go! And you’ll just have to put that on my—whatever. Crime tab. Speaker: No, no, no, no. Taking a federal agent hostage is a separate charge. Malory: Oooh, well then perhaps we should get him back on the phone. Speaker: I—I don’t—there’s no need to bother the—look. If you’ll just sign this form— Malory: Do-do-do, “In lieu of criminal prosecutions for—" do-do-do, “Treason, I hereby forfeit ISIS headquarters—" [The group of spies reacts in disgusted disbelief.] Malory: “And also agree to permanently cease and desist any and all ISIS operation.” [The group of spies shouts denials.] Sterling: Oh god. Speaker: Or face a mandatory sentence of life in federal prison without parole. [The group of spies talks over each other in shock.] Malory: Signed Malory Archer. Lana: Oh. My. God. Sterling: No. Uh-uh. Nooope. Because correct me if I’m wrong, but that entire document is completely unenforceable! Speaker: I correct you. You are wrong. Malory: For god’s sakes, Sterling. It’s government! Even if it weren’t legal, they’d enforce it! Speaker: Hey! Save it for four-ninths of the supreme court. Malory: Oh, shut up.

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jesse

So, [chuckles] when you do the show, I’m sure that the—that the same things that make playing an imperious “B”—I will say, for public radio purposes—fun, or the bad—the bad guy or bad gal fun are doubly fun when you get to do them in the context of voice work, where you get to—you get to go big when you wanna go big.

jessica

Yes. Yes. Broad. Broad. And you know, with voice work you—it has to be—you have to have a lot more energy. If you ever had the energy with that extra, you know, energy on camera—I mean, you’d be laughed off the screen. It would just be way too large. But it has to have that extra little punch, which is fun. Big fun.

jesse

Your husband has been on the show. [Jessica confirms several times.] He’s—he lives—everyone lives together in a house in the new season of the program, and he is among the people that live in the house. And he was introduced just recently—or I believe last season on the show. Do the two of you record together?

jessica

You know, we did the first day, we did. And it’s just—it’s so much easier if you don’t. So, after that we didn’t. We didn’t. But you know, we’ll go down there together, and I’ll wait for him to be done and he’ll wait for me to be done. So, the family that does voice work together stays together.

jesse

He’s wonderful on the show. In fact, I wanna play a scene of the two of you talking together. [Jessica agrees.]

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Ron: [Voice warped by the telephone.] I mean, don’t get me wrong. I respect that. But comparing ISIS to six Cadillac dealerships is like comparing apples to six Cadillac— Malory: [Yelling.] Ron! Ron: What?! Malory: Sterling is stranded at the Montreal Casino with his pockets turned out and—and this is just speculation—some new drug-resistant form of VD. Ron: Really? Malory: And you’re in Schenectady again! Ron: I’ll be home tonight! Malory: Oh, I know. Because what’s tonight? Ron: Uuuuh, Tuesday? Night? Malory: Box seats for the opening of Carmen at the Met! Ron: Babe. Come on. I promise. I’ll be there. Malory: Well, if you’re not you can just not bother coming home at all. Ron: I— [A beep as she hangs up on him.]

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jesse

I’m gonna go back to this 1984 People Magazine article. [Jessica affirms.] My key piece of research that I did for this interview. This is Don Brinkley, who is—was, at the time, the executive producer of Trapper John MD, a show that you were on at the time. And he says, about your marriage, that when he first heard of the marriage between, quote, “Two very dominant, very volatile personalities,” he found himself asking, quote, “Who’s going to listen in this house?” Question mark, unquote.

jessica

Wow, is that in the article?

jesse

That’s in the—that’s in People Magazine.

jessica

Wow. First of all, Don Brinkley and his wife, Marge, were two of the sweetest people ever living on the earth. He was a producer of Medical Center and his daughter is Christie Brinkley. So, what am I to say now? Who listens? We both listen to each other. Or we wouldn’t have made it to 31 years. Is that the question?

jesse

You matched up to the answer that you gave 29 years ago.

jessica

Oh! Oh, what did I say? What did I say?!

jesse

Oh, you answered—that’s—no, I was attributing it to you! But it’s actually Ron, your husband. He says, “We both do. We learned how.”

jessica

[Fondly] Aww, that sounds like him. He is the best. He really is.

jesse

Okay, now I wanna talk for a minute about Dinosaurs, because you asked me if I remembered Dinosaurs and I definitely remembered Dinosaurs, which I watched every week with my mother.

jessica

When you were, like, three. [Laughs.]

jesse

Not quite. I was 11 or 12.

jessica

Okay. Oh, perfect! Perfect audience.

jesse

Yes, I was exactly in the Dinosaurs key demographic at the time. And Dinosaurs was—you know, this was—this was the era where The Simpsons had just exploded, and like The Simpsons it was sort of a take on the 1950s _Honeymooners-_style family sitcom. You know, the same way The Flintstones was. Only it was—it was giant, live-action puppets.

jessica

Animatronic, yeah. It was animatronic, but with bodies—real people—in them.

jesse

Yeah, I mean they were really, really amazing puppets. I mean, they still look—they still look pretty darn good 20 or so years later. So, we have a scene from Dinosaurs. And you were the mom dinosaur, whose name was Fran.

jessica

Fran the Mama.

jesse

Let’s take a listen.

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Music: Ominous music. Fran (Dinosaurs): The terrible twos. That’s an old wives’ tale. Ethyl: So, what do I look like? A debutant? Think back, Fran. You’ve gone through this twice before. Robbie and then Charlene. Fran: Well, let me see. [Gentle tinkling music fades in.] Fran: I remember making little decorative “2”s for the birthday cakes. [Gentle tinkling music fades out.] And then they were three years old. That’s funny. I’ve no recollection of that entire year.

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jesse

My only disappointment is that it lacked the signature catchphrase, “Not the Mama.”

jessica

Yeah, I have to say—quick funny story about Dinosaurs. So, the show went on for about three seasons and at the end of season two, I got a call from the producer, creator—well, he wasn’t the creator, but he was producer—and he said, “Listen.” You know, you have options with the contract. They can dump you. You can’t dump them, but they can dump you. And he said, “We’re—you know, we may have a problem, you know, with you continuing as Fran.” I said, “Why?” He said, “Well, we’ve sent Fran to the dinosaur hospital in London. She’s gonna have a facelift.” You know, they were—this—only in Hollywood. “And we’re gonna fix—there’s certain things we’re gonna change about her face and, you know, her ears. And we just hope—we don’t know that your voice will then fit the new Fran.” Yeah, you know, I’m getting palpitations just telling you this story ‘cause it’s bringing up the—and I said, “Oh, well, thanks for the heads up.” And I tell you, for a month I was in a depressed state. I couldn’t [chuckling]—I couldn’t think of anything but, “Oh my god.” And then I got the call, “Well, you know, she’s had her facelift. We’ve looked at her. And yes. Yes, it’s okay. Your voice will still fit the new—the new Fran.” Can you believe this? [Jesse laughs.] I—seriously, it’s almost equal to a voiceover audition I once went on for a commercial for Borden’s milk, here in the East, years ago. And I got past the regular casting and I went up to the suits, the execs there at BBD&O or one of those places and they said, “We want the moo of a cow that has been happily married for 10 years.” [Jesse cackles.] Yeah! I had mooed my way right up to this very—and I said, “Okay, so not 9 and not 11. Ten years.” And I proceeded to do about 25 moos, and I did not get it.

jesse

Jessica, thank you so much.

jessica

My pleasure, thank you.

jesse

Jessica Walter. She passed away last month. Her family has asked that, in lieu of flowers, her fans should send their support to the charity Guiding Eyes for the Blind, which is an organization that helps train seeing eye dogs. We’ll have a link to their website on the Bullseye page at MaximumFun.org.

music

Relaxed piano music.

jesse

That’s the end of another episode of Bullseye. Bullseye is created out of the homes of me and the staff of Maximum Fun, in and around greater Los Angeles, California—where I recently acquired a bench thanks to the good people at Abell Auction Company. Thanks for that bench. It’s a good bench. Paid a fair price. The show is produced by speaking into microphones. Our producer is Kevin Ferguson. Jesus Ambrosio and Jordan Kauwling are our associate producers. We get help from Casey O’Brien. Production fellows at Maximum Fun are Richard Robey and Valerie Moffat. Our interstitial music is by Dan Walley, also known as DJW. Our theme song is by The Go! Team. Thanks very much to them and their label, Memphis Industries, for sharing it. They’ve got a new single out, by the way. So, you know, Google The Go! Team, get to jamming. You can also keep up with our show on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. We post our interviews in all of those places. And I think that’s about it. Just remember: all great radio hosts have a signature signoff.

promo

Speaker: Bullseye with Jesse Thorn is a production of MaximumFun.org and is distributed by NPR. [Music fades out.]

About the show

Bullseye is a celebration of the best of arts and culture in public radio form. Host Jesse Thorn sifts the wheat from the chaff to bring you in-depth interviews with the most revered and revolutionary minds in our culture.

Bullseye has been featured in Time, The New York Times, GQ and McSweeney’s, which called it “the kind of show people listen to in a more perfect world.” Since April 2013, the show has been distributed by NPR.

If you would like to pitch a guest for Bullseye, please CLICK HERE. You can also follow Bullseye on Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook. For more about Bullseye and to see a list of stations that carry it, please click here.

People

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Maximum Fun Production Fellow

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