Dave Coulier might be the biggest cartoon fan of all time
The comedian got to Full House on the strength of his cartoon impressions.
Before Dave Coulier became a TV star on Full House, he was a stand-up comedian who was known for his amazingly accurate cartoon impressions.
If you’ve watched the sitcom, you know that on Full House, Coulier’s character Joey Gladstone was pretty much based exactly on his real life.
Joey’s best friend was Bob Saget, he was an avid golfer, and above all else, he loved to watch Saturday morning cartoons and often worked impressions into both his daily life.
In the Eighties, as Full House topped the ratings for Friday night television, Coulier also crossed over into actually originating cartoon voices as a voice actor pulled into hit cartoon franchises.
On The Jetsons, he voiced a newsboy in an episode called "Rip-off Rosie."
And he was known to voice villains on Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?
For The Muppet Babies, he voiced two very different characters — Baby Animal, known for being the unruliest, and the nursery’s brainiest, Baby Bunsen.
He even got a chance to become a Real Ghostbusters star, voicing Peter Venkman across many seasons and in the Slimer! spin-off.
All this work came from Coulier showing some gumption in the mid-Eighties and chasing after his cartoon dreams.
He had begun doing cartoon impressions on a rock radio show, and he got curious what he would have to do to submit his name for consideration to do real voice work.
So he called up Hanna-Barbera and asked about sending in an audition tape.
"What should I put on my tape?" Coulier asked.
"They said to put on some original characters, so I made up some original characters, put a 3.5-minute tape together and sent it on a Friday," Coulier told The Los Angeles Times in 1989. "That Monday, they called me and said, ‘We have work for you today.’"
The L.A. Times story described Coulier as a "hard-core fan of cartoons," and we think his career stands as testimony to that fact – performing 40 weeks a year as a stand-up doing cartoon impressions, before voicing his own original cartoon characters for Hanna-Barbera, before playing hard-core cartoon fan Joey Gladstone on Full House.
But at least one reporter for L.A. Weekly suggested that Coulier became so successful not just because he was so good at doing cartoon impressions, but because he was actually built like a cartoon himself:
"Dave Coulier resembles a cartoon character – head slightly too big for body, herky-jerky movements, the look of someone whose coloring might leave the confines of the drawing at any moment. Hey, Dave sounds like a cartoon, while evoking the Saturday nostalgia of Mr. Peabody, Sherman and Bullwinkle."
Keep all that in mind as you watch Joey do his best impressions season to season on Full House: you’re watching one of the biggest cartoon fans of all time spread his love for classic cartoons to millions.