The curtain closed today for a man who was an integral part of life for many in my generation (kids born in the 80s). As many of us were putting our own children to bed tonight, we found out that Bob Saget – “America’s Dad” – had passed away unexpectedly. There aren’t a lot of celebrity deaths that hit me like a ton of bricks (I think the last one was Robin Williams in 2013, and he is still My Captain), but this one has me thrown for a loop. I’ve struggled this evening with being productive versus sitting and watching shows with Bob in them. Interestingly enough, I have been binge watching How I Met Your Mother again since right before Christmas, and one of my favorite parts has been his hypnotic story telling voice! I’m sure there are a lot of people thinking “How can you be upset about the death of someone you never met?” Simple, I – along with many others – grew up with Bob.
As a child, I was an AVID fan of Full House. I watched the show, read the books, had the posters, collected the trading cards, and owned a Michelle doll. “You got it dude!” I was an 8 year old super fan! During the same time period, we also spent a lot of Sunday nights watching America’s Funniest Home Videos. I remember sitting around with my family, watching, and laughing. At one point, I wanted us to win AFV, but I remember thinking that 10 stamps was an awful lot for a video that I wouldn’t get back. Bob was an integral part of my childhood, and I felt like if I ever got to meet him then it would have been like meeting a long lost uncle. He would’ve made me laugh, but he also wouldn’t have been afraid to punish me if I brought my swimming pool into the kitchen!
As an adult, Bob returned to my life as the Narrator on How I Met Your Mother. Previously I mentioned his hypnotic story telling voice. I appreciated it the first time through because of the comedic genius that he brought to the role without even appearing on screen. This second time through – especially since I’m a parent – I love the genius of the storytelling and at times story omitting while narrating Ted’s life. I know that a lot of the credit goes to the writers, but Bob brought the words to life in such a way that I wanted him to narrate my own “How I Met Your…” story.
Outside of the sitcom world, Bob could be a raunchy comedian. One of my favorite raunchy roles was when he played Abraham Lincoln on Historical Roasts. There was something great to me about seeing the clean cut guy from my childhood make mega adult themed jokes. I felt like watching it was a rite of passage. Like he knew those of us who loved clean cut Danny Tanner as children needed to see him in a different light now that we were mature enough to handle it. Guess what? He was right!
While I continue to process the loss of America’s Dad, I pray that Bob’s legacy will not be forgotten. I hope that he’s cracking jokes in the here after and entertaining the deity of his belief as I type. RIP Bob Saget and thanks for all the laughs!
The Great Kaysby