44 Fictional Characters Whose Names You Don't Know

You've known these characters your whole life. Isn't it time you learned their real names?

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1. All right, lets start with the most logical place, breakfast. The Pillsbury Doughboy's name is Poppin Fresh, first name Poppin, last name Fresh. If you're planning to participate in the thriving world of Poppin Fresh fanfiction, you probably also want to know that he has a wife, Poppie Fresh, and two kids; Popper and Bun Bun Fresh. His cat and dog are names Biscuit and Flap Jack, so, go get to work.

2. That guy smirking at you from the oatmeal canister is not William Penn; the good people at Quaker Oats refer to him as Larry. In 2012, Larry got a mini-makeover. His hair was trimmed, he lost a little weight, and Quaker says he acquired, quote, more radiant skin from his daily oatmeal mask.

3. As you may remember from our cereal quiz video, before he was a distinguished captain of the S.S. Guppy, the good Captain Crunch was Horatio Magellan Crunch.

4. Thanks to a marketing campaign in 2009, Mrs. Butterworth was finally given a first name; please call her Joy in all future correspondence.

5. Comic book guy on the Simpsons is really named Jeff Albertson, and he would be the first person to jump on you for not knowing that. Matt Groening wanted to call him Louis Lane.

6. While we're talking about Matt Groening, lets discuss Mom from Futurama. She shares her name with another famous mom, the Brady's, Carol.

7. The next time you land on the 'go directly to jail' spot while playing Monopoly, direct your cursing at Officer Edgar Mallory, the cop who inhabits that space.

8. And while you're in jail, feel free to chat up Jake the Jailbird, he's not leaving anytime soon.

9. And when you get that unexpected ten dollar windfall for coming in second place in a beauty pageant, you need to thank Rich Uncle Pennybags. Rich Uncle Pennybags used to have a wife whose name was Marge, but you know how repeated bankruptcies can affect a marriage.

10. According to Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich, Woody from Toy Story has a last name, Pride.

11. Big bird's friend Snuffleupagus has a first name, Aloysius. Aloysius Snuffleupagus. 

12. Speaking of Sesame Street, in a 2004 episode Cookie Monster admitted that before he got hooked on cookies, his name was Sid. Oh, and lets clear up a rumor while we're at it, despite Cookie's new focus on eating healthy foods like eggplants, he's not changing his name. In a 2012 episode he said, "We've gotta stop this Veggie monster rumor before me reputation ruined!" Mental_floss asked me if I could do a cookie monster impersonation, and I said, "Yes."

13. You know Guy Smiley, from Sesame Street? Yeah, his real name was Bernie Liederkrantz.

14. In a Peanuts comic strip, Peppermint Patty's real name is Patricia Reichardt.

15. And that annoying teacher, who sounded suspiciously like a muted trumpet, Miss Othmar, who later got married and became Mrs. Hagameir.

16. Those fortunate enough to be on a first name basis with Mr. Clean call him Veritably. That's right, Veritably Clean. The name comes from a "Give Mr. Clean a First Name" promotion in 1962. 

17. Barbara Millicent Roberts, better known as Barbie, was named for creator Ruth Handler's daughter, so that was good for Barbara's body image.

18. Barbie's long time love and fellow fashionista is named Ken Carson, also after Handler's offspring. That's right, the real Barbie and Ken are siblings! And you will surprised to learn that they did not appreciate the attention that came with being the namesakes of these dolls. In fact, Barbara's daughter, Cheryl, never owned a Barbie, and Ken Handler said he wished that Barbie worked in a soup kitchen, but, "then she would never sell."

19. The perpetual patient in the game Operation is an unfortunate fellow named Cavity Sam.

20. In a deleted scene from the 2006 Curious George movie, it was revealed that The Man With The Yellow Hat is named Ted Shackleford. Now, this may not count, because it was from a deleted scene, and because it was from a movie, and because it came out years after the creators of Curious George died.

21. And now to the Wall of Magic. (pointing at each in turn) Bruce Wayne;

22. Oswald Cobblepot;

23. Diana Prince;

24. Minch Yoda, at least according to George Lucas' earliest notes; and just Toad.

25. So, you already know the Fail Whale, but did you know that the friendly little bird over on Twitter goes by the name Larry? Larry Bird? Tell him hi for us when you tweet that the latest mental_floss video is out.

26. In 1916, 14-year-old Antonio Gentile entered Planter's Peanuts contest to create a mascot. His winning entry was a version of the dapper legume we all know and love today. And he also suggested the name, Bartholomew Richard Fitzgerald-Smythe.

27. The Michelin Man's real name, Bibendum, means "drinking to be done" in Latin, and people used to refer to him as the Road Drunkard. The name comes from a bizarre, early advertisement, that showed the Michelin Man holding a questionable cocktail of nails and broken glass, with the tagline, "Michelin Tires: Drink up obstacles!"

28. For most of us, the evil queen from Snow White has always been known as "the scary lady from the Disney World ride," but early promotions for Walt Disney's first feature length animation film referred to the world's worst stepmother as Queen Grimhilda.

29. Now, over to Archie comics. Of course, Jughead's parents didn't name him Jughead. They named him a much better name: Forsythe P. Jones III.

30. Mr. Whipple, the poor grocer who so desperately wanted his customers to leave the Charmin alone, did have a first name: George. George Whipple.

31. Dana Carvey's judgmental, lips-pursing, holier-than-thou church lady, has a name. Enid Strict.

32. If you go by the 1995 Casper movie, which you shouldn't, by the way, then Casper's family name is McFadden.

33. Before he was simply Geoffrey, the Toys R Us mascot was known as Dr. G. Raffe.

34. Although Shaggy probably fits him better, the frightened ghost hunter's real name Norville Rogers.

35. Scooby has a more proper name as well, Scoobert Doo.

36. Let's stick with television. We've got Angus MacGyver;

37. Bosco Albert Baracus, from The A Team;

38. Salvatore Assante, aka Turtle from Entourage;

39. Wilson W. Wilson Jr. from Home Improvement;

40. Nostradamus Shannon, aka Bull from Night Court;

41. Jeff Boomhauer from King of the Hill;

42. Jonas Grumby, better known as Skipper from Gilligan's Island,

43. and the professor, Roy Hinkley.

44. And lastly, we return to the salon to discuss Columbo. On his police badge, Lt. Columbo's name was Frank, but many sources will tell you that his name is Philip. However, that's not true. It's a copyright trap, something I know a thing or two about, that first appeared in the book The Trivia Encyclopedia. When Trivial Pursuit later included a question with the incorrect answer, the author of The Trivia Encyclopedia knew that they had used information from his book, and so he sued. But then the court ruled in favor of Trivial Pursuit, saying that facts, even false ones, cannot be copyrighted.

Afternoon Map
The Most Popular Infomercial Product in Each State

You don't have to pay $19.95 plus shipping and handling to discover the most popular infomercial product in each state: AT&T retailer All Home Connections is giving that information away for free via a handy map.

The map was compiled by cross-referencing the top-grossing infomercial products of all time with Google Trends search interest from the past calendar year. So, which crazy products do people order most from their TVs?

Folks in Arizona know that it's too hot there to wear layers; that's why they invest in the Cami Secret—a clip-on, mock top that gives them the look of a camisole without all the added fabric. No-nonsense New Yorkers are protecting themselves from identity theft with the RFID-blocking Aluma wallet. Delaware's priorities are all sorted out, because tons of its residents are still riding the Snuggie wave. Meanwhile, Vermont has figured out that Pajama Jeans are the way to go—because who needs real pants?

Unsurprisingly, the most popular product in many states has to do with fitness and weight loss, because when you're watching TV late enough to start seeing infomercials, you're probably also thinking to yourself: "I need to get my life together. I should get in shape." Seven states—Colorado, Idaho, Kentucky, Montana, Nebraska, Utah, and Wisconsin—have invested in the P90X home fitness system, while West Virginia and Arkansas prefer the gentler workout provided by the Shake Weight. The ThighMaster is still a thing in Illinois and Washington, while Total Gym and Bowflex were favored by South Dakota and Wyoming, respectively. 

Kitchen items are clearly another category ripe for impulse-buying: Alabama and North Dakota are all over the George Forman Grill; Alaska and Rhode Island are mixing things up with the Magic Bullet; and Floridians must be using their Slice-o-matics to chop up limes for their poolside margaritas.

Cleaning products like OxiClean (D.C. and Hawaii), Sani Sticks (North Carolina), and the infamous ShamWow (which claims the loyalty of Mainers) are also popular, but it's Proactiv that turned out to be the big winner. The beloved skin care system claimed the top spot in eight states—California, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, and Texas—making it the most popular item on the map.

Peep the full map above, or check out the full study from All Home Connections here.

A Florida Brewery Created Edible Six-Pack Rings to Protect Marine Animals

For tiny scraps of plastic, six-pack rings can pose a huge threat to marine life. Small enough and ubiquitous enough that they’re easy to discard and forget about, the little plastic webs all too often make their way to the ocean, where animals can ingest or become trapped in them. In order to combat that problem, Florida-based Saltwater Brewery has created what they say is the world’s first fully biodegradable, compostable, edible six-pack rings.

The edible rings are made of barley and wheat and are, if not necessarily tasty, at least safe for animals and humans to ingest. Saltwater Brewery started packaging their beers with the edible six-pack rings in 2016. They charge slightly more for their brews to offset the cost of the rings' production. They hope that customers will be willing to pay a bit more for the environmentally friendly beers and are encouraging other companies to adopt the edible six-pack rings in order to lower manufacturing prices and save more animals.

As Saltwater Brewery president Chris Gove says in the video above: “We want to influence the big guys and kind of inspire them to also get on board.”


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