The voice cast of Fox’s critically acclaimed animated comedy series Bob’s Burgers took part in the 2016 San Diego Comic Con, taking questions from fans of the series and sitting down for roundtable interviews. H. Jon Benjamin (Bob Belcher), John Roberts (Linda Belcher), and Eugene Mirman (Gene Belcher) teamed up for the interviews in support of the show’s upcoming seventh season premiering on September 25, 2016. Mirman, Roberts, and Benjamin provided the scoop on favorite episodes, Bob’s Burgers songs, and how the comedy series maintains its sweet, family-friendly tone.
H Jon Benjamin, John Roberts and Eugene Mirman Interview:
What do you think about the evolution of incorporating more music into episodes?
H. Jon Benjamin: “I think people really like it and so I think they’re kind of doing it more because it’s working. Loren Bouchard, the creator of the show, has always been really musical. I feel like they love writing songs.”
Eugene Mirman: “As someone who can’t sing, I really enjoy that Loren writes these songs and then I get to do these songs with Loren, and that I get to sing even though I can’t in any other context.”
H. Jon Benjamin: “Yeah, it’s a good evolution. At some point I feel like it will just be a total musical.”
Eugene Mirman: “Yeah, Bob’s Burgers is just like a precursor to Hamilton.”
Do you have a favorite episode?
John Roberts: “Out of every episode? Probably ‘Eat, Spray, Linda’ which was a big Linda episode.”
H. Jon Benjamin: “Totally self-involved.”
John Roberts: (Laughing) “Totally self-involved. It’s a Linda-centric one. I’m not going to pick a stupid Bob one.”
H. Jon Benjamin: “They’re a little boring, but they’re more thoughtful.”
John Roberts: “Well, not really.”
Eugene Mirman: “I like the one where I befriend Jon Hamm the talking toilet.”
John Roberts: (Laughing) “See? Selfish.”
H. Jon Benjamin: “What did I like? The recent one with Bob and Louise singing a duet.”
Eugene Mirman: “Yes! The one where you’re trapped in a toilet. That was really great.”
H. Jon Benjamin: “You remember the songs – they were great.”
John Roberts: “‘Wonder Wharf’ was good. That was a fun song to sing. (Laughing) It was 007-esque.”
Have there been any scenes that have been particularly hard to get through without breaking down laughing?
Eugene Mirman: “There’s definitely scenes where we break down laughing, but the truth is it’s audio and we’re recording almost a year ahead of time so you can redo stuff. We often will if we break down laughing, and often we are trying to get each other to laugh. But, you can just redo something.”
H. Jon Benjamin: “John does a lot of potty talk and dirty words.”
John Roberts: “A lot of f-bombs…”
H. Jon Benjamin: “…which are never funny.”
John Roberts: “But they feel good.”
Eugene Mirman: “Those are mostly cut out of the show, as you’ll notice.”
What do you think about Bob’s Burgers cosplays?
John Roberts: “I love seeing all the Linda…it’s all about me. (Laughing) It’s all about Linda! No, I just saw an amazing Tina, actually. But, I like when people quote lines or sing our songs.”
What lines do they usually quote to you?
John Roberts: “Well, I’ll tell you. Zachary Quinto just did a dubsmash and he did Linda in his Spock outfit. That was really awesome. I loved that. That was really cool.”
If you could voice a different character on the show, who would you pick?
John Roberts: “Gene, because he’s musical.”
Eugene Mirman: “And me, maybe Bob?”
John Roberts: “You’d be a good Bob.”
How do you think it is Bob’s Burgers is able to maintain being such a family-friendly, sweet sort of animated comedy vibe?
John Roberts: “Well, I guess because we already have a Family Guy they didn’t want to set out to do another Family Guy.”
Eugene Mirman: “Also, first of all I think it’s Loren and Jim Dauterive making that as the direction. But really it’s that the family is very warm and loving. We tease each other like a family would, but you really get the sense of the real warmth and the real connection. And then from there everybody has their own idiosyncrasies but they all support each other. Linda supports all of her kids and it’s very sweet. So, I think that there’s a sweetness and it’s still funny and weird and idiosyncratic.”
John Roberts: “Yeah. The characters almost make fun of themselves in a way or the audience is in on the joke that is related to the quirkiness of these characters. Those characters are pretty grounded in some really fun real humor things that human beings have. I mean, it’s a different show. And Loren is a very classy guy and he likes to keep a certain tone, and it’s great.”
Has there been anything in the scripts that takes you by surprise, like one joke in particular that sticks with you?
Eugene Mirman: “There’s a joke that you did in an episode – I feel like it aired – where all the clocks have stopped. It still makes me laugh. Linda’s like, ‘Oh my god! All the clocks have stopped at 3:15,’ in a room full of clocks. And then all of a sudden it just moves to 3:16 and she’s like, ‘Oh. Oh no, it’s just that it’s 3:16. The clocks are fine.'”
John Roberts: “She thought something sinister was going on.”
Eugene Mirman: “Somebody had died at a certain time and then it turned out that it was just 3:15. But that joke makes me laugh a lot still.”
John Roberts: “It’s just Linda being so dramatic and then so stupid at the same time. (Laughing) Like me…”
Did you relate to Gene as a kid? Were you like Gene at all?
Eugene Mirman: “I feel like Gene is the idealized version of me as a kid. Gene is much more comfortable with who he is than I was probably as a kid. Gene isn’t as much what I was like as a kid as much as what I’d be like if I was a kid now.”