Though he is best known today for telling diabetics to “check your blood sugar and check it often,” Wilford Brimley was one of the best no-nonsense tough guys in the movies. Back in the day, no one played gruff and plainspoken as well as Wilford Brimley. Whether he was playing a senior citizen in Cocoon, a U.S. attorney in Absence of Malice, or a stern father figure in countless movies and TV shows, Wilford Brimley was the epitome of an honest, upright, no bullshit authority figure. It has been a while since Brimley appeared onscreen but anyone who grew up in the 80s and 90s can remember hearing his distinctive voice and fearing that, somehow, Wilford Brimley knew everything that he had ever done wrong.
Wilford Brimley played many roles but, for me, he will always be Postmaster General Henry Adkins in The Junk Mail episode of Seinfeld. In this episode, Kramer announces that he is no longer going to accept any more junk mail and dares to suggest that we might not need a postal service at all. Who better to set Kramer straight than the U.S. Postmaster General, Henry Adkins? Even if it means having to put off his golf game, Henry is not going to let anyone make a joke out of the U.S. Postal Service.
As Henry himself explains, “I’m a postmaster but I’m also a general and it’s the job of a general to, by God, gets things DONE!”
In the video below, Henry Adkins enters at the 1:17 mark.
After watching this great moment in character actor history, you will never again complain about getting a pottery barn catalogue!