Before she knew it, Grey Griffin had successfully parlayed a childhood penchant for clowning around with silly impressions into a full-blown voice acting career. Throughout nearly two decades in the industry, Grey has lent her voice to memorable mean girls and other classic cartoon characters like Daphne from Scooby-Doo. Her focus is currently on comedy, drawing inspiration from the trials and tribulations of family dysfunction in her new comedy special on Amazon, My First Comedy Special (naturally). Check it out HERE! Grey also has the rare opportunity to work with her 11-year-old son Tex on Nickelodeon’s hit show, The Loud Family. She affectionately embraces the controlled chaos of her daily life with characteristically dry wit. And she is unafraid to let her opinions be known about current events. Her hopes for 2019? Well, ideally, an impeachment is waiting in the wings as we speak.
Cliché: Did you always know you wanted to go into the entertainment industry?
Grey Griffin: Yes! Ever since I could form words, I’ve been doing impressions and trying to make people laugh. I didn’t realize the thing that made me the weirdest girl in my class could actually be a career!
You’ve voiced many iconic villains of every millennial’s childhood, including Vicky from The Fairly OddParents and Azula from Avatar: The Last Airbender. What attracts you to playing rebellious teen girls? As an actor, how do you connect to the character when they’re the antagonist?
My grandma bought me a boom box when I was 8 and I used to spend hours recording little audio telenovelas to amuse myself while she was working. It’s weird that I play so many meanies when I’m such an incredibly kind and selfless sweetheart in my everyday life! Ha! I’m exaggerating but I truly am a pretty happy, low-conflict lady. I guess I must store up a ton of resentment after letting all of those people with less items go ahead of me in the checkout line then I unleash it all behind the mic!
Tell us about your new comedy special on Amazon, fittingly titled My First Comedy Special. Where do you draw inspiration for your material from?
I have a little red comedy notebook in my car and I write “funny” things down all day. Sometimes it’s hard to decipher a particular idea because I probably wrote it as I was swiftly careening towards a bus. I draw tons of inspiration from my family. I’m raising 3 kids by myself and for a while I was also caring for my 94 year-old disabled grandma. My ex-husband currently resides in my guesthouse. I often have to laugh to keep from sobbing uncontrollably.
Kate Micucci of Garfunkel & Oates dubbed you “the real-life Mrs. Maisel.” That’s quite a compliment! Do you think there’s a lot of comedy to be mined from your personal life and observational humor?
Kate is such a sweetheart! She plays Velma on Scooby-Doo and I’m Daphne! She’s actually the one who kept urging me to do comedy. I was always screwing up her takes in the booth by making her laugh. When I first started doing shows, I was telling her that I always beg the booker to go first (even though nobody likes to do that) because I have to get back to my babysitter! Kate goes, “Oh my God! You’re the REAL-LIFE MRS. MAISEL!!!”
What was your favorite topic to discuss during your special and why?
I love doing impressions of my late Grandma, Eva Flores, because it makes me feel like she’s still alive and finally getting her moment in the spotlight.
You and your 11-year-old son Tex both have roles on The Loud House. What’s it like having the opportunity to work with your son on the same show?
Working with Tex is a dream come true. I’m so dang proud of him! He is such a great talent and so funny. I respect his opinion so much. I help him with his auditions and he helps me punch-up my jokes! It’s a pretty fair trade. We have had a standing “date night” on Fridays for years but now it’s much more convenient because instead of going home to pick him up after work we can go straight to sushi from Nickelodeon!
Your twitter feed is very unabashedly political. Why is political activism and letting your opinions be known so crucial to you in our current climate?
Ugh. I tried not to go there for SO long but there just came a point where I couldn’t be silent anymore. A colleague warned me that I needed to be careful because my activism might be “off-putting” to some people. Knowing something is wrong and not speaking up is WAY more off-putting to me!
If you could give your teenage self life and/or career advice, what would it be?
Don’t go to college unless you have to. If you already know what you want to do and it doesn’t require a degree, just go DO IT! If you have something to “fall back on”, you’ll probably fall back on it.
Any plans for your next comedy special?
I’ve been pretty busy creating some original cartoons and a live-action educational show for preschoolers that I’ll co-star in with my son but stand-up is truly where my heart is. I’m trying to write my hour and I’m about halfway there. I’m excited to divulge even more about my crazy life but I think it’s also important for me to continue showcasing undiscovered comics. There are SO MANY funny people out there. It’s like going to an animal shelter! I WANT TO HELP THEM ALL!!!!
What are your hopes for 2019?
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Grey Griffin Draws Comedy From Family Life In “My First Comedy Special”. Photo Credit: Deidhra Fahey.