Why Bob’s Burgers Will Never Show Us Who The Belcher Kids Will Be As Adults

Bob’s Burgers is still going strong after 12 seasons on Fox, and The Bob’s Burgers Movie is in theaters right now. Like any episodic cartoon, the characters don’t really age, so we’ve essentially been seeing the Belcher kids live the same year of their life for over a decade. One can’t help but wonder what these quirky, precocious youngsters will be like when they grow up, and while it’s led to plenty of speculation online amongst fans, it’s not something we’re ever going to see on the show. While this may be disappointing, the writers have a very good reason for it.

While speaking with writer and producer Nora Smith for The Bob’s Burgers Movie, she explained to us that looking too far forward will affect the way we perceive the magic of the Belcher kids’ childish hopes and dreams:

We have an episode that sort of thinks about it, but it always feels like there’s so much potential, and not to ruin life for children [laughs], but there’s always so much potential and it feels like if you name what they’ll be you’re like, hampering it down a little bit. Like Gene, you can be anything you wanna be, you can be a robot DJ, you could be… whatever, you know? So I’ve never thought about it too much because I love how hopeful little Gene is.

A robot DJ isn’t a bad gig! Whatever that means. What Nora Smith is saying makes sense. Part of the show’s charm is imagining what Gene, Louise, and Tina’s lives could be. Once the writers show us, all of that potential is stripped from our imaginations.

Writer and producer Loren Bouchard doubled down on this point, citing the longest-running animated program of all time, The Simpsons, as an example of what he’s trying to avoid:

I have a memory of watching The Simpsons and they flash forward and show you what the characters are gonna be like when they’re older, and I remember thinking, ‘Oh, that’s from the voice of the show, they’re telling me what’s going to happen, this is an authorial flash-forward.’ And we try never to do that, the voice of the show is not taking a position, nor do the writers, but we let the kids, in that episode that Nora mentioned, where we sort of let them look forward. It’s gotta be them.

It’s hard to say which episode they’re referring to, as the show has covered a lot of ground. We’ve seen the kids as babies, they’ve been represented in 62 different animation styles, and the first-ever episode “Human Flesh” alludes to the original premise of the show where the Belchers were a family of cannibals. Despite all of the bonkers adventures we’ve seen them on, there are some things that the creators just won’t do as to not ruin the spirit of the show, and this includes consideration of a live-action episode.

The Bob’s Burgers Movie is in theaters now! People are loving it, our own Eric Eisenberg gave it a “well done” review, and many are considering it a prime example of the rare occasion when a TV adaptation is done right. As for everything else that’s coming to theaters this year, check out our 2022 movie release schedule. 

Jeff McCobb
Senior Video Producer

Jeff is a film buff who is full of gratitude that he gets to spout opinions about them for a living. He currently resides in Los Angeles, where he spends his time complaining about Los Angeles.