There are dozens of recognizable superfans in the NBA, but only the Milwaukee Bucks have Milhouse on their side — and he’s hoping his fashion choices will be even more useful than flood pants.
Ryan Fox first got noticed as NBA Milhouse when he wore an impossibly spot-on costume to the Celtics vs. Bucks game on Oct. 26, 2017. Now the Bucks are headed to the NBA Playoffs, and Fox is asking people to open their hearts (and wallets) to help send NBA Milhouse to a playoff series so he can cheer them on courtside.
I have a deep love and appreciation of The Simpsons. There is still every episode from 1991-2002 at my mom’s house, where I recorded them on long-play VHS tapes and cut out all the commercials as a kid. I had to learn more about NBA Milhouse, and caught up with Ryan to ask him about his superfan cosplay, and why his mom thinks he’s cool.
Why did you decide to dress up as Milhouse?
I’ve had blue hair for about two years now and bought the Sally Jesse Raphael ridiculous looking red glasses last year, so upon glancing at myself in the mirror I realized I was slowly becoming him. The next logical step seemed to be to just embrace it and go full throttle with the look to entertain myself and others. Plus I’ve been obsessed with The Simpsons since it first aired.
Why Milhouse, specifically?
Milhouse is always the downtrodden and teased, yet lovable Simpsons character, which actually serves as a pretty accurate metaphor for the Bucks. I’ve been a fan my whole life so since the late 80s we’ve always been the underdogs it seems with tons of potential. We’ve got some great players on our team currently so it looks like everything could be coming up Milhouse–err … Milwaukee. Plus with a new arena coming next season I guess you could say it’s our new Mil-house. (See what I did there? Boom.)
Have any Bucks players appreciated your costume?
Nothing that I’ve heard about yet … looking at you, Giannis. Let’s hang out, buddy. I’ve seen a few players around town actually, but I’d never interrupt someone while they’re trying to enjoy their dinner.
What is your favorite Milhouse quote?
Probably when Milhouse was caught taking shirtless selfies in a photo booth. “Uhh … my shirt fell off.”
What’s your life like outside of NBA Milhouse?
Pretty wild. I’m a bartender and a filmmaker. I love writing and pursuing creating content. I love going to shows and supporting my friend’s creative efforts. I also sideline as a professional wrestling disc jockey under the moniker DJ Jobber. I only spin records recorded by wrestlers. There’s a shocking amount of them and they’re all awesomely horrible.
What do your family and friends think?
They love it. My friends are pretty geeked by the positive reception it got on social media and I get a lot of shout outs when I’m in Milwaukee and out of town even. I was at a Green Bay Packers game and some girls when they recognized me sitting a few rows up gifted me a flask of Dr. McGillicudy’s, which was both a blessing and a curse naturally. My parents enjoyed seeing everything too. Plus my mom thinks I’m the handsomest boy in school.
What does “THRILLHO” mean to you?
What doesn’t it mean to me? I’ll challenge anyone to a Bonestorm match. Bring it.
So, let’s assume you raise the money for the playoffs — what are your Milhouse plans?
Get these yellow buns in a floor seat, support the Bucks and entertain some people. Except during boring timeouts. That’s when I enjoy reading my Radioactive Man comics and play with my ALF pogs. It would be pretty wild to go to a road game as well. I get kind of a sick satisfaction putting myself in a crowd dressed like an idiot. It forces people to react and I really enjoy that experience. Beyond that, I hope I can raise some money for an animal welfare charity with the campaign so I can do something positive towards a cause I care about.
Which Bucks player would be Milhouse’s favorite, and why?
Hmmm … that’s a tough one. Probably Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. In season 22, episode 17, Kareem gets to choke Homer for once, which was a long time coming for all the times he’s strangled my buddy Bart.
What’s it like to have a dad who’s a big wig at the cracker factory?
It was great at first, but it ultimately led to the divorce of my parents once the business started to fail so I’m pretty salty about it.
Is there anything you want people to know about NBA Milhouse?
He loves all of you. Even the trolls.
What’s the most overused Milhouse reference people have shouted at you?
Of course “Everything’s coming up Milhouse.”
What’s the most obscure one that delighted you?
I wouldn’t say it’s obscure, but an older grumpy dude in the bathroom at the game told me “You look like a f*cking idiot” so that was pretty awesome. It’s definitely something Nelson might say to me.
Ryan’s NBA Milhouse GoFundMe can be found here, if you want to help support an incredibly lifelike Milhouse cosplayer get court side seats at an NBA Playoff game, which let’s face it, we all do.