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June Foray Dies: Her Six Greatest Genre Roles

June Foray and Talky Tina
Today we lost a national treasure. June Foray, the legendary actress who's best known for voicing such beloved characters as Rocky the Flying Squirrel and Jokey Smurf has died at age 99.

June Foray was born June Lucille Forer on September 18, 1917, in Springfield, Massachusetts and started out in radio. She perfected her old lady voice at the tender age of 12. After playing the voice of Lucifer the cat in Cinderella (1950) she began working steadily for various animation studios including Warner Bros. Looney Toons where she voices Tweety's owner Granny and Witch Hazel.

She's gone, but we'll always have her amazing work. Foray did dozens of roles and here is a list of her notable contributions to the science-fiction genre.

The Twilight Zone (1963) "Living Doll" as Talky Tina

The Twilight Zone (1963) "Living Doll" - Talky Tina and Christie Streator (Tracy Stratford)

For the science fiction anthology series, The Twilight Zone Foray did the voice of the malicious talking baby doll "Talking Tina". Annabelle (Mary LaRoche) buys her daughter, Christie (Tracy Stratford) a windup talking doll. The unknowingly sentient doll gets revenge on the girl's cruel stepfather Erich (Telly Savalas). Foray does an amazing job adding a sinister tone to her catchphrase "My name is Talky Tina and I love you" as the doll tries to kill people. It inspired a Simpsons episode and the Chucky movie series.

Lost in Space (1967) "The Questing Beast" as Gundermar (Voice)

Lost in Space (1967) - Gundermar and Angela Cartwright (Penny Robinson)
In the 1960s outer space adventure Lost in Space episode "The Questing Beast" Dr. Smith, Will Robinson (Bill Mumy) and Robbie the Robot meet an alien dressed as a medieval knight. The knight is pursuing a mystical dragon voiced by June Foray. While the costume is laughably bad Foray gives the character, beauty and class.

Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends (1981) as Aunt May Parker

Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends (1981)
The latest Spider-Man movie, Spider-Man: Homecoming has a new Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) and she's far younger and more attractive than the comic book version. Back in the 80s, the Saturday morning cartoon had a more comic book accurate version with gray hair and a bun. Foray's Aunt May was sweet, honest and kind. The perfect compliment to Peter Parker. Foray also did the voice of Spider-Man's Crime Computer.

The Jetsons (1985) "Little Bundle of Trouble" as Lady at Gas Station

The Jetsons (1985)

In the 1985 reboot of the futuristic cartoon show, The Jetsons, June Foray had a couple of minor roles in the episode “Little Bundle of Trouble”. In the episode, the Jetsons family takes in a baby abandoned on their doorstep. They’re surprised when this "baby" turns out to be a jewel thief in disguise. Foray plays a pretentious lady at a gas station who complains about the self-service buttons and a telephone operator. Both are good examples of her amazing range as an authority figure.

Teen Wolf (1986) as Grandma Howard

Teen Wolf (1985)

In the 1986 Saturday morning cartoon series based on the teen comedy Teen Wolf (1985). The series follows a teenager who realizes he comes from a family that turns into werewolves. The family of Scott Howard, which is only briefly mentioned in the movies is given starring roles. June Foray played Scott’s grandmother, Grandma Howard. She’s from Transylvania and stays in werewolf form all of the time. She had a lot of fun with the role playing a well-mannered werewolf and got to play off her recurring role as a witch in the Warner Bros Bugs Bunny cartoons.

Weird Science (1995) as Talking Tammy and Baby Ruth

Weird Science (1995)
Ten years after the John Hughes teen sci-fi comedy Weird Science (1985) hit theaters, it was turned into a television series. The live-action TV series follows two dorky teenagers - Gary Wallace (John Mallory Asher) and Wyatt Donnelly (Michael Manasseri) - who accidentally create a genie named Lisa (Vanessa Angel). While it’s not well-known today it was pretty popular and ran for five seasons on the USA Network. 

In one episode the two have a falling out and Lisa zaps them into a fictional black-and-white science-fiction anthology series called The Sci-Fi Zone. It's a thinly veiled reference to The Twilight Zone. The two encounter a Rod Serling look-alike and several other references to the show. Foray does a voice of an evil talking doll similar to the one she did in “Living Doll”. She also plays a talking candy bar named Baby Ruth.

What did you think of June Foray? Which is your favorite role from her?

Some images via My Life in the Shadows of the Twilight Zone

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