TV Characters


Sandy had some great characters. Here's a short list:

Norton Nork:

a good-natured simpleton who was guided through his day by a voice-over (also played by Becker). His fans remember a great pun in which Norton (who was baking a cake) was told to get 'the little bottle that says 'vanilla''. Sure enough, the bottle of vanilla extract was squeaking "Va-NEE-la! Va-NEE-la!". The voice invariably concluded, "Norton, you've done it again..."

Kevin Butler remembers a Superman parody in which Norton played "Clark Nork", a tropical-fish expert who would fight crime and protect the defenseless (both people and animals) as "Supernorkulease"! In one skit he had to remove a dangerous fish from a tank of rare tropical fish... Does anyone know more about this character, or about other Norton Nork parodies?

Hambone:

Hambone was a loony disk jockey-- sort of based on Wolfman Jack, Cousin Brucie, etc. He wore a pith helmet with a decorative plume, a drum major's uniform, and a pair of goggles that looked like a set of binoculars attached to his face (actual prescription lenses, by the way). He was given to saying things like "The sea is deep so the fish can sleep! YEAAAAAA--"

The Ranger:

A takeoff on the Lone Ranger, of course. He had an Indian sidekick (named Arthur Arrowroot) with a speech impediment, who called himself "Ah-thuh Awwow-woot". Arthur kept trying to introduce the Ranger to modern concepts, but without much success. The Ranger always asked Arthur, "How are you able to do these things, Arthur?", and Arthur would reply, "Because me strongest member of my tribe!" Hambone once appeared in one of their skits; in exchange for a drink of water, Hambone gave Arthur some records by a band called "The Bagels". The Ranger was off visiting the doctor at the time; when he returned home and asked Arthur what had happened while he was away, Arthur told him about the strange man who had stopped by and given him some black bagels. Arthur then proceeded to cook the 'bagels' on a potbellied stove... (thanks to Kevin Butler for the correction and info)

Sinister Simon:

He was a melodramatic villain resembling the Shadow... but he wasn't much of a villain. He was too sympathetic. In fact, in one episode Simon had an imaginary (?) double, and he maintained his belief by singing "I Believe In You"...

EECOPS(?) From Outer Space

(also known as Sputnik): One of Sandy's puppets. He was an imperious, bald-headed, pointy-eared character from the planet Zircon. When he got mad, his eyes would flash on and off. "We of the people of Zircon are angry! Angry! ANGRY!!!!"

Gnatman and Nitboy:

A takeoff on the "Batman" TV series. The characters were so small that they almost drowned in a bowl of soup!

""Nitboy" was played by Tim Moriarty Jr. Mr. Moriarty also played "Sinister Sidney" (Sinister Simon's good-boy son) and "Clyde Calaminty Clem" during the run of the last "Sandy Becker Show"." --Kevin Butler

For Tim Moriarty's recollections of working on Sandy's show, click here.

"Catch Max":

"Max" was a little cartoon character (a burglar in a striped shirt, carrying a bag of loot) who used to run along the bottom of the screen at random intervals. The first viewer to phone WNEW after seeing Max would win a prize. Norton Nork was once able to catch Max, though not in the way he'd expected. Click here for details...

Dr. Gesundheit:

A mad-scientist character whose assistant was a big-headed dummy named Dorshock, who spoke in gibberish and was a bit scary...

The Big Professor:

The Big Professor was always introduced to the strains of 'Pomp and Circumstance' by Elgar, followed by a drum roll. He answered arcane questions sent in by viewers and gave away Golden Book Encyclopedias as prizes for the best questions...

K. Lastima:

Phonetically, it means "Too bad" or "What a shame" in Spanish. Lastima was a dishevelled, Spanish-speaking kid's-show host in a Panama hat; Spanish-speaking viewers got a kick out of his in-jokes. He used to give away prizes as well; they invariably went to... "Mi Madre!!!" Lastima had an assistant named Miguel, who once appeared in "Catch Miguel", Lastima's own version of "Catch Max".
Sandy also did cartoon voices on the "Underdog" show, especially in the "Go Go Gophers" segments. He played both the sergeant (Okie Homa, the one who was always 'beggin' the Colonel's pardon...') and the gopher who talked in gibberish. On the "Tudor Turtle" show, he was the voice of Mr. Wizard, who used to save Tudor at the end of each episode by chanting "Drizzle drazzle drozzle drome-- Time for this one to come home!" The line occasionally pops up on "Mystery Science Theater 3000".

Sandy also provided the voice of Captain America on the "Marvel Superheroes TV Cartoon Show".


Special thanks to David Miesel for the animated logo!