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Clay Puppington

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Clay M. Puppington
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Clay in his study

Gender

Male

Age

40

Birthday

April 12, 1966

Hair

Brown

Religion

Protestant

Job

Mayor of Moralton

First Appearance

The Best Christmas Ever

Last Appearance

Honor

Voiced by

Scott Adsit

Family & Relationships

Clayton Middleinitial "Clay" Puppington (born April 12, 1966) is Orel's strict, abusive, alcoholic father who tries to keep his home in line with a 1950's style of living. He hates his job as mayor of Moralton, his children, his marriage, and his father, Arthur Puppington. He is the major antagonist in the series.

HistoryEdit

Clayton Middleinitial "Clay" Puppington was born on April 12, 1966 to Angela and Arthur Puppington. As a child, Clay was the only surviving child of his parents, as his mother's drinking, smoking and fun-loving lifestyle caused her to miscarry ten of Clay's unborn siblings ten years before he was born (largely because Clay's mother spent all of her pregnancy with Clay praying for his safety). Clay's mother was a religious zealot, who spoiled Clay rotten. During his childhood he started on with "Lost Commandments" v idea. His father at first didn't mind it and found it cute when he was 6. But as he got older and Angela only encouraged it, it became annoying. This created tension with Clay's father, who was outright neglected by his wife in favor of his son.

Clay's life collapsed however when he faked his own death as a prank on his mother, causing her to have a fatal heart attack. Clay's father never forgave Clay for his part in his mother's death and emotionally shunned his son, ultimately telling him that he's "not even worth it" upon an initial refrain from slapping him. This deeply affected Clay, causing him to seek out his father's abuse as a means to gain any sort of emotional response and validation. Later, his father saw though Clay's abuse seeking and stopped hitting him when he gave the gun away. The two formed a causal hatred towards each other and blamed each other for the death of Clay's mother Angela. His love for his mother would develop into an Oedipus Complex many years later, shown in the episode Nesting.

His father gives his gun to Clay saying he is ending the male Puppington tradition of passing along the gun to one's first born son, because it is tainted with blood. Clay decided to continue the tradition with Orel. The trips were centered more upon father-son bonding than hunting, but because his father never did the camping trip with him and Clay had no real experience himself, the event was doomed from the start.

When Clay was in his mid twenties, he was much similar to Orel, shown to be a rather mild figure who wanted to spend his days studying the Bible and drinking apple juice. While accidentally attending a wedding thinking it was Sunday hearing, Clay met Bloberta Hymentact. Bloberta asked about his family, Clay said "my parents are dead," not telling her the truth about his father Arthur being alive. The two went to the wedding reception together, where Bloberta introduced Clay to liquor. She believed that alcohol relaxed people for the better, and even used a religious justification in order to get him to drink.

Alcohol caused a massive switch in Clay's personality, turning him into a womanizer and drunken party-goer and ultimately caused Bloberta to punch him unconscious in order to keep him from flirting with other women. Afterwords, Bloberta lied to Clay, telling him that he passed out and that she looked after him while he was unconscious. She then pressed him to marry her, citing that he needs someone like her to "help" him. Clay agreed, but by this point the damage was done as Clay was now a full-blown alcoholic who spent most of his wedding flirting with other women, getting drunk, and ultimately getting arrested after the wedding for driving under the influence.

Clay largely hates his family, not remembering his children's names or caring when one of his children is briefly switched with another child. This is taken to an extreme in the episode "Numb" when he assumes Shapey and Block are a liquor-induced hallucination. He is rather misogynistic, believing that women differ from men in the ability to fulfill themselves solely through tending to their husbands. It is later revealed that it sexually arouses him to watch her do such chores, ultimately leading him to partake in voyeuristic swinging housekeeping. He is close friends with Coach Daniel Stopframe , who secretly lusts after Clay. It has been shown that Stopframe is Clay's chief enabler as far as feeding his dependency on liquor and went as far as to seduce and impregnate Bloberta in order to be near him. Ironically enough, Clay seems very unaware that Stopframe is Shapey's father and has held no grudges against him.

He will often bring Orel into his study to discuss various misdeeds Orel often does after dealing out "a good belting" to the boy. The lessons usually have little to do with the actual damage he caused, usually focusing on "the lesser of two evils". For example, when confronting Orel for raising the dead, Clay is more concerned with the fact that Orel created naked zombies (by removing their clothes prior to resurrecting them) than actually creating zombies. Also, when Orel develops an unintentional addiction to crack-cocaine, he is punished by Clay for speaking slang rather than smoking it. He also often punishes Orel for something that was Clay's fault in the first place, such as giving him bad advice or not explaining thoroughly what is actually right to Orel which later had serious consequences, like when Orel started masterbating and putting his semen in the women of Moralton and impregnating them because Clay told him not to waste his seed but didn't tell to not put them in the women. It is unclear what happened to Orel's unborn children but given how Moralton wants to protect its reputation as a religious community and the fact the women were baring a twelve year old boys child, the women might have aborted the fetuses in secret.

He also has a collection of firearms in his study, including a Heckler & Koch PSG1 sniper rifle and what is revealed in "Nature Pt.1" to be an extensive arsenal. In Nature Part 1, the event becomes a disaster before they even depart. Clay immediately gets drunk and decides to throw everything he can out of Orel's kit, even though it could had been useful. Clay further shows his bad side by belittling Orel for not wanting to kill animals. He then cruelly shoots a deer and someone's dog, just to be hurtful and superior.

During the trip, he rants violently about how awful his life is and then accidentally shoots Orel but denies any responsibility. He sinks even lower when, in "Honor", it is revealed that he continues to blame Orel for the injury. That experience made Orel see his father's true nature and he lost all of his respect for him, Orel ended up seeing him as a cruel, miserable, hypocritical and hateful human being he was.

In Sacrifice, he was rude to everyone at the bar and he tries to prove life is horrible by getting everyone to hit him by making harsh remarks to people, but everyone walks away causing Clay to collapse in defeat and seeing that he's not worth it. He also blames the townspeople for making Orel sensitive.

In "Honor" Clay finally admits his feelings for Coach Stopframe, in front of his wife, and children. A picture of him and Bloberta both seen on the wall in the final scene, a stark contrast to Orel and Christina but both looked at peace and finally seemed happier. Orel and Christina live happily and have better lives than Clay and Bloberta when they raised them. Clay failed to make Orel be like him but as an unhappy adult using religion as an excuse for irresponsible actions.

Clay's downfall was his own selfishness, hatred, cold, irresponsible, cowardly, worthless, in denial, and hypocrital behavior and he suffered the consequences for what he did to his family and for betraying Coach Stopframe. But in the final scene Clay and Bloberta's portraits are hung behind Orel and Christina, hinting they are still unhappily together.

The name "Puppington" obviously refers to stop motion, much like many other names such as Stopframe and Armiture.

Beforel OrelEdit

Clay is seen in the special Beforel Orel. He's shown to be in shock that Bloberta is pregnant and begins to sob. He's shown to be in great denial that he neglects Orel. Bloberta begins to berate him for not teaching Orel anything and accuses him of going to his study to hide from him. He's shown to still be haunted by his father's emotional rejection. To avoid answering Orel's questions about the baby, he decides to "send" him to his father in Sinville.

He basically abandons Orel at his grandfathers farm, though eventually, Clay brings him back early due to warnings from Miss Censordoll that he needed to teach him about God. He picks an unfortunate time, as Bloberta goes into labor. He basically ignores Bloberta when Orel begins asking questions about the baby. He tries getting Dr. Potterswheel to talk to Orel for him, but he leaves. With no one else, Bloberta delivers Shapey . Clay is still unable to teach him anything, and decides to make God the answer to Orel's questions.

However, Orel begins asking about proof. Clay gets angered and annoyed when he realizes that Orel learned some of those things from Arthur. He then decides to make Reverend Putty drag the congretation to a late night sermon for Orel to learn about God. When that doesn't work, Clay lets him go to Miss Censordoll. It does work, to a point, but Clay still refuses to teach him anything.

He quickly tries to get Orel to not pray out of thankfulness for his grandfather and demands he wipe out everything he learned from Arthur. Unknown to him, Orel has taken their advice too much to heart and believed he had to show his faith like Abraham with Isaac. While Arthur went to stop his grandson, Clay was at the bar getting drunk.

While Officer Papermouth lectured Orel and Bloberta left with Shapey, Clay and his father are alone. For the first time in years, the two speak. Arthur is willing to take the blame for how Clay has raised Orel. Clay, not wanting to accept responsibility, states that Orel is fine. Arthur admits that he's surprised that Orel knew nothing about God, given how Moralton was a deeply religious town and how Clay had been raised by Angela. He then asks Clay why Orel hadn't been taught about God.

For the rarest moment, Clay shows real emotion, telling him that he had no confidenence to answer Orel's questions; let alone talk about God because he felt worthless. An even rarer moment is when he cries genuinely, as he remembers how his father stated "you're not even worth it". Something that Arthur still remembered. For a brief moment, there's a silence between father and son. Arthur shows a small sign of concern and regret how he treated Clay. But Clay pulls back, not wanting to reconcile. He then states that he sees now that God was the answer to all of Orel's problems.

He then states that he never wants Arthur to see Orel again. When Orel is let go by Officer Papermouth, he's overjoyed to see Arthur. Clay, most likely wanting to hurt his father, reminds Orel what he taught him. Orel, seemingly obedient, recites what Clay told him that "grandpa is a bad man and shouldn't be trusted". Clay takes pride seeing Arthur hurt by this. Clay's left totally oblvious that Orel was only acting for Clay and Orel winks at his grandfather; showing he still trusts his grandfather.

To show up Arthur, Clay states he's going to take Orel to his office (mostly to discipline him). But Orel is just overjoyed to see his study. Arthur leaves happily, knowing Orel still loves him. As he leaves, Clay watches his father's truck leave, regretfully sad. But he quickly shakes it off, still refusing to reconcile with his father.

The episode ends with Orel and Clay in his study, with his belt in his hand, hoping that he's learned his lesson and that they can avoid more problems in the future. Which will fail because his form of discipline became abuse and it was just to get back at his father to show he is the better parent and in the future Orel will unknowingly cause damage by accident because of his father's poor parenting and the townspeople's bad advice to Orel. Also, Orel ends up hating Clay at the end.

PersonalityEdit

At the end of the day, Clay is a man with a painful childhood, a unpleasent past and a lot of regrets. He is a deeply depressed, frustrated cynic. He is ill-equipped to deal with life's problems and takes out his anger and frustration on his family, friends, and the town. He despises and fears the reality of his life and himself. He also hates being ignored, brushed off and being worthless. He's irresponsible. He mocks and ignores anyone who tells him he is wrong, including Orel and Bloberta. His adult life bears the fruits of his spoiled and unbalanced childhood. His marriage is a lie and everyone but Orel knows it. When he makes a mistake, he blames it on other people to mask the fact that he is not perfect. He began to blame other people for his mistakes ever since he accidentally killed his mother, resulting in his father despising Clay. When he was in his twenties, he was a mild-mannered man until he met his future wife, Bloberta, who introduced him to alcohol. His true personality came out when he drank and he turned out to be a very selfish, bitter, depressed, racist, and misogynist.

Family and RelationshipsEdit

  • Angela Puppington
    • She is Clay's mother. The two spent a lot of time together, and Clay was basically a spoiled "mama's boy" because of her devotion to him. When Clay was 12, he pretended to be dead and gave her a heart attack which killed her. Before she died, she would call Clay her "precious only ever". Her death still affects him to this day and he blames his father for her death.However as an adult he seems to have developed an oedipus complex towards her.
  • Bloberta Puppington
    • She is Clay's wife. The two are in an unhappy and unloving marriage. Clay constantly drinks and often reminds himself he still hates his wife. There are very rare moments when they are civil to one another. One moment in "Numb " when he overhears Orel asking her why she married him, Bloberta simply answers "Why not?". When Orel mentions his father drinking, Bloberta states that his drinking only shows his true nature. Bloberta breaks down after leaving her son with an empty answer. She then goes cold seeing Clay because Clay caused Orel to begin seeing the harsh truth about the family. The two lay in their beds. Looking as if they're awaiting death or accepting they are indeed stuck to be with one another, miserably. In Beforel Orel, its shown that the two are very much aware they don't care for another. As their wedding photo of them frowning is seen on the wall. When Orel asks if he should pray for his mother (out of thankfullness), Clay only to reply "eh" meaning he have semi feelings for her. Ironically, although he and Bloberta hate one another they are possessive of one another. As he was angry of the thought of her sleeping with Dr. Potterswheel and Bloberta was frantic to hide the hankerchief she took from Clay. However there are some times he actually does care for Bloberta like in "Turn the Other Cheek" he got angry at Orel for beating her.
  • Coach Daniel Stopframe
    • They are close friends and drinking buddies, although Coach Stopframe would like something more from their relationship. He encourages Clay's alcoholism in the hopes that it will lower his inhibitions. Clay is aware of the infatuation and sometimes flirts with him publicly. In "Honor", Clay finally admits his feelings for Stopframe and is rejected as Stopframe has realized Clay is a terrible person.
  • Miss Francis Clara Censordoll
    • In "Nesting ," Censordoll embarked upon a scheme to seduce Clay Puppington, offering to be his mistress, using the fact that she was unable to produce children and manipulating his Oedipal feelings towards his dead mother, to convince Clay of her potential as his mistress. They begin to passionately make out as they fondle a chicken egg. Had the series continued, Clay would have accepted her offer and their affair would have been a plotline.
  • Orel Puppington
    • He is Clay's only biological son. Because of his selfishness, Clay shows no real love for Orel and instead treats him like work. The closest hes really shown to love was when he defended Orel from a zombie. When it comes to love, he never really says it to him. He once said "I love you enough". Clay even said, "I'm glad that I shot you." He chose not to reconcile with his son even when he had plenty of chances to do it. In Honor, it shows how more selfish he is when he becomes jealous over the time Coach Stopframe spent with him. He felt no guilt that Orel basically stated he didn't feel relaxed at his own home. He was more jealous that Stopframe wanted to be nice to Orel. In Beforel Orel, Clay is shown to be in very deep denial that he's a neglectful parent. And wants Orel to turn on Arthur to hurt him unknown to him that Orel is pretenting to turn on Arthur. Its revealed that he didn't want to teach young Orel anything (including God) because he had no confidence he could. He attempt to get Orel to hate Arthur, but Orel is pretending to hate him and thus Clay's attempt failed and a few years later Clay caused Orel to hate him instead and made Orel lose his respect for Clay and Orel grew up to be a much happier adult after he stopped listening to his father's poor advice and had a better life. It is uncertain if Orel still talks to his father as an adult even though he has a portrait of him and Bloberta in his home left by his grandfather.
  • Shapey and Block
    • It is implied that Clay can tell them apart and appears to be the only one who noticed they were switched but simply doesn't care since neither of them is his real son, they are however so similar that when he saw them both at the same time in "Numb" he assumed it was double vision. He dislikes Shapey because he's not his real son and sometimes sits in his study looking at pictures of possible fathers. He usually just pushes them away from him or gives them something to play with so they'll leave him alone.
  • Arthur Puppington
    • Clay hates his father, because he blames him for the death of his mother. However, Clay killed his mother and he's blaming his father for it instead of blaming himself. Arthur ended the male Puppington tradition, but Clay says he'll keep the tradition going only to go back on that promise with Orel. He chose not to reconcile with his father even when he had plenty of chances to do it. In Beforel Orel, it explores more about their relationship, it shows the hatred between them was still ever strong as Arthur threatened to shoot his car if he came on his property. The two don't interact near the end when Arthur admits he's surprised Orel didn't know about God and asked his son why. Clay, emotionally, answers he didn't have enough confidence to answer Orel's questions or talk to him about God. He then states because he felt worthless and cries in front of his father. The two realize its because of how Arthur stated "you're not even worth it". And for a brief moment there's silence between father and son. Arthur shows to express concern and regret for how he treated Clay. But Clay goes back to his self and angrily states that he sees that God is the answer to all of Orel's questions and states he never wants to see him around Orel. To hurt his father, he gets Orel to say that "grandpa is bad and shouldn't be trusted". Unknown to him, Orel was only pretending and winks at Arthur who knows the truth. As Arthur leaves, Clay watches him drive off sadly and regretfully. This could hint that he does miss his father and probably (even for a moment) wished to reconcile. But he quickly shakes it off and goes back to "normal" as he refuses to ever forgive Arthur. If the series continued, Arthur would live with Clay. After, Arthur died, Arthur left the money and house to Orel and Christina which causes Clay to be infuriated. Arthur would have the last laugh on Clay.

AppearancesEdit

Season OneEdit

  • All episodes

Season TwoEdit

  • All episodes

Season ThreeEdit

  • All episodes except Alone

Gallery Edit

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