News that William Biggers died in Plymouth came via many sources, including the Associated Press via the Star Gazette on Feb. 15. The passing in Massachusetts of the man who co-created "Underdog" was unexpected.
The 85-year-old Biggers, who was nicked named Buck, was an advertising executive whose claim to fame came when he co-created "Underdog." This happened when Buck worked for Dancer Fitzgerald Sample. General Mills hired the firm to come up with a way to promote its breakfast products and "Underdog" was ultimately born out of this assignment.
By way of background, the character known as Shoeshine Boy was actually a superhero named Underdog who fought villains such as Riff Raff and Simon Bar Sinister. The mild mannered pup did all this in defense of his love, Sweet Polle Purebred.
Out of the "Underdog" campaign and subsequent cartoon came the catchphrase, "No need to fear, Underdog is here." This slogan could be heard far and wide as baby boomer kids found these words useful in explaining their own exploits.
Although Biggers' "Underdog" stopped running in syndication in 1973, the namesake character has remained in pop culture. In fact, a flick that was based on the movie came out in 2007 with Peter Dinklage of "Game of Thrones" fame doing the Underdog voice.
William Biggers went on to work for NBC and also wrote for high-profile magazines like TV Guide and Reader's Digest. He also dipped his pen into projects that turned into novels, eventually producing such tomes as "The Man Inside."
Obviously, this very creative man who was able to jump from one genre to another with the grace of the beloved character named Underdog that he co-created. William "Buck" Biggers will be missed.
RIP, William Biggers, RIP.