R.I.P. Jackson Beck and Eugene Roche

Two unjustly obscure actors died last week: Jackson Beck and Eugene Roche.

You’ve probably never seen Beck – but you definitely have heard his voice. He was the king of voice announcers, starting back in radio (he originated the line, “It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s Superman”), voiced Bluto in Popeye more than anyone else, was the narrator of Woody Allen’s Take the Money and Run and did hundreds of commercials (Thompson’s Water Seal, for instance). Any time someone wanted an authoritative-sounding voice, Beck was their man.

Roche was a character actor, best known for his rold of Edgar Derby in Slaughterhouse Five and a lot of TV work (he started in commercials; his “dishwashing expert” commercials for Ajax were quite memorable).

Well, I know of Jackson Beck now that you describe what he’s done, but I always knew who Eugene Roche was. Damn. This is sad.

As a fan and OTR collector, I’m most saddened by Beck’s death. We are losing those guys and gals too quickly these days.

Roche, I had seen over the years as well.


Sir Rhosis

A whole generation of talented, young, innovative dish washers was inspired by Eugene Roche.