dora’s new voice

flintstones- all rights reserved and acknowledged

If you had asked me three years ago who the h-e-double hockey sticks Dora the Explorer was I might have guess a nickname for a medical device that was part of an unpleasant medical experience – the older I get the more I start to think that way.

But most everyone with kids knows its an ungodly popular TV animated show and billion dollar enterprise for Nick Jr. I have about a dozen Dora related products in my home (more to come I’m sure) including pull up diapers because as the Muppets will tell you you’re not really a hit in TV animation until your animated likeness is plastered all over a…diaper. Please insert your own joke here.

But for fans of the show and for voice over, this upcoming season will unveil a new voice talent for Dora. Caitlin Sanchez, a 12 year old from New Jersey and new to VO, is set to fill the role of Dora. While I offer my congratulations to her as I’m sure she’ll do a fine job, I wonder if the current audience will notice the change as the producers hope they won’t.

For example, even as a child I noticed voice acting changes on the Flintstones during the series and its various incarnations and the later voices made me tune out. Now maybe I was a VO producer even as a child but I think kids are more discerning that adults give them credit for or even hope they’ll be.

I’ll be interested to observe if a certain young lady around our house notices any difference in her must-see-TV.

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10 Responses to “dora’s new voice”

  1. I NOTICED THE VOICE CHANGES ON THE FLINTSTONES TOO!!!!!!! I tuned that dang show out as well. I felt ripped off. When my oldest was growing up, she loved BARNEY and if they would have changed his voice, I would have boycotted!!

    Brian in Charlotte

  2. Well see the problem with Dora was the original child’s voice evidently got too old sounding (that’s gotta break a kids heart to lose out on a fun job like that)

    The thing with the Flintstones is Mel Blanc got injuried (I think he missed some shows and others he did from bed) but I think Alan Reed, the original Fred passed away before the later shows were produced. He was just the best.

    Thanks Brian for sharing my outrage 🙂

    Best always,
    – Peter

  3. Wow – i JUST saw this clip on YouTube from October of ’07:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTSski_gE18

    I wonder how she’s taking it?

    In any case, the other day, we were watching Dora’s cousin’s show, Go Diego Go! When Diego’s sister, Alicia, started talking, my 3-yr old daughter asked, “Why is her voice different?” So, yeah – it was a different VO. I’m sure, unless they use some sort of plugin to compensate, that she will notice Dora’s different too.

  4. Hi Anthony:

    I think that’s the sign of a true VO pro…worrying about the performer first, in this case the original Dora. I hope her parents prepared her for the day which had to come.

    I know kids get it, I just know it. I think most let it pass but I just know they notice. Thanks for visiting, you’re always welcome here Anthony.

    Best always,
    – Peter

  5. Hi Peter,

    The original voice of Kathleen Herles (born in 1991 which would make her 17 now) will likely be missed, but Dora has to stay “young” sounding as we’ve seen in other series.

    I’d have to listen to the voice match by Caitlin Sanchez to give you my verdict. As a parent of kids who love the show, we’ll have to see how things pan out come this season 🙂

    Thanks Peter,

    Stephanie

  6. Of course, that would be Kathleen Herles as the original voice of Dora 😉

    Cheers,

    Stephanie

  7. i was expecting you to cite the replacement of bea benaderet with gerry johnson. that took the edge off for me. henry corden did a nice enough job as fred in the spin-off shows, but alan reed was the genuine article.

    you’re not the only pre-teen vocal critic. i remember feeling absolutely cheated when i’d buy the kiddie records of my favorite cartoon shows…and know that it was definitely NOT daws, or don, or mel, or paul doing the voices. more than half the time, it wasn’t even a good knock-off!

  8. Hi Stephanie and Rowell:

    Kudos to both of you for encyclopedic knowledge of the cast lists of those shows.

    Stephanie, like Anthony and me, will have to do an unscientific poll about three weeks into the new season and see if any of the three of us get any reaction from our in house focus groups 🙂 Please report back on that.

    Rowell: I’m with you on feeling cheated. And it’s not even that the actors following Alan Reed did a bad job. It’s just that after having one voice so powerfully associated with a character, it’s impossible to switch without some backlash.

    But at the time of that production, it wasn’t such a big deal. Now with Simpsons and Family Guy money floating around, I feel that some of the folks who laid the ground work for character voice artists today kinda got gipped.

    Right place, right time I guess. My friend Toni Silveri’s pal Daws Butler would be a billionaire today!

    Best always,
    – Peter

  9. lol

    A few years ago I bought a Dora talking house for my niece. I knew nothing about the show since we don’t have kids. I only knew my niece was into the show.
    When I got home and pushed a few of the buttons on the house, I thought I had bought the wrong one.
    I must have bought the Spanish version.
    facepalm? 🙂

    And yes, I was very distressed when Fred’s voice changed when I was a kid.

  10. James:

    Love the facepalm reference!

    That darn show has got me saying excellente (sp?)!

    Best always,
    – Peter

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