Harry Shearer (1943-) is an American actor and Voice Actor famous for starring as Derek Smalls in This Is Spinal Tap, as well as his voicework on The Simpsons, where he plays many characters including squeaky-clean religious neighbor (before he was Flanderized into a strawman Republican and a strawman Bible thumper) Ned Flanders, cynical preacher Reverend Lovejoy, school principal (and Vietnam vet who still lives with -- and is being controlled by -- his mother) Seymour Skinner, evil nuclear plant owner Mr. Burns and his Ambiguously Gay, syncophantic assistant Waylon Smithers , Bill Cosby Expy and the town's only competent doctor Dr. Julius Hibbert, sarcastic, often unprofessional news anchor Kent Brockman, Homer's friend and plant coworker Lenny, Grandpa Simpson's elderly vitriolic best friend Jasper Beardley, stoner bus driver Otto Mann, and Arnold Schwarzenegger Expy Rainier Wolfcastle. He also hosts the satirical NPR series Le Show.
Shearer got his start on Saturday Night Live during its fifth season (from 1979 to 1980), then returned during Dick Ebersol's final season (1984 to 1985; season ten) before Lorne Michaels's return, making Shearer the Grover Cleveland of SNL . Shearer's reason for leaving SNL during its tenth season (mid-season): creative differences (in his words, "I was creative, they were different.")
Tropes applying to Harry Shearer:
- Man of a Thousand Voices: The number of Simpsons characters listed above are a mere handful of those he, Dan Castellaneta and Hank Azaria play.
- My Friends and Zoidberg: In a particular Treehouse of Horror 's credits, all of the members of the core voice actors have halloween pun names...except Shearer.