Archive for June, 2015



12
Jun
15

Reading Digest: Fucking CNN Edition

Homer Defined14

“Forget the hair, just give me the blush!  Oh, we’re on.” – Kent Brockman

Fucking CNN.  This one is bad even by their impressive standards of idiocy and misinformation.  Thanks to their sloppiness, the internet went briefly nuts this week over the supposed “revelation” that Homer and Marge were going to permanently separate in the upcoming season.  Here’s what happened.

On Sunday, Variety published a bog standard publicity interview with Jean about the upcoming season.  The penetrating and hard hitting questions included, “How does it feel to reach season 27?” and “How do you still manage to keep it fresh and timely?”.  Articles like this are the reason Variety exists, so the entertainment industry can let the public know about its new stuff.  (Know how you can tell it’s straight PR?  The word “Shearer” does not appear.)  The headline was “‘Simpsons’ EP Al Jean on Homer’s 2016 Vote, Another Movie & the Star He Still Wants”.

Here is the relevant section:

What’s ahead this season?

In the premiere, it’s discovered after all these years Homer has narcolepsy and it’s an incredible strain on the marriage. Homer and Marge legally separate, and Homer falls in love with his pharmacist, who’s voiced by Lena Dunham. We’ll have cameos from the other women from “Girls.” We have an episode coming up where Lisa befriends a homeless woman who turns out to be an incredible singer. The woman’s voiced by Kate McKinnon, but the singing is done by Natalie Maines. In another episode, Spider Pig makes his return. Sideshow Bob appears in a segment, and we finally see him do something he’s wanted to do for 25 years. And we have an episode based on the film “Boyhood.” It’s a flashback/flashforward about Bart. We go to various points in his life and his life to come which I think came out really well.

Jean rattles off a few episode plots, one of which is about Homer and Marge legally separating.  This wasn’t considered big news, and most of the follow on articles I saw were about Sideshow Bob finally killing Bart in the Halloween episode.  For three days, that was the biggest piece of information anyone cared about in this article.

Then, on Wednesday morning, CNN got around to writing it up:

(CNN) – We already knew that it can be hard to make a marriage work in Hollywood, but it looks like it’s also tough to keep things afloat in Springfield.

According to an executive producer for “The Simpsons,” Homer and Marge will legally separate in the upcoming season.

The animated series is heading into its 27th season, and the show plans on keeping fans intrigued. Executive producer Al Jean told Variety that one of the plot points for the new season is Springfield’s supercouple splitting and the appearance of a surprising other woman.

In terms of whether or not Homer and Marge are permanently separating, those four sentences are pretty vague.  Since four whole sentences in three whole paragraphs is way too erudite for the modern internet media company on the go, there’s also a “Story highlights” box for people who are really pressed for time:

CNN'sFinest

The “Story highlights” read, “A producer says the longtime couple will split in new season” and “‘Girls’ star Lena Dunham will appear on the show”.  The first one greatly lessens the ambiguity by strongly implying that the “split” will last for a whole season.  The second one introduces a currently popular and reliably controversial celebrity.

That alone might have done it.  But what to do when even the misleading “Story highlights” take too long to read?  That’s what seriously misleading headlines are for!  Behold:

CNN'sStupidHeadline

Combine “‘D’oh! Homer and Marge set to split on ‘The Simpsons'” as a headline with the “Story highlights”, add in the internet’s notoriously poor reading comprehension skills, and you get a completely untrue viral story echoing around the internet, radio, and teevee.  It got out of hand enough that the show’s official Twitter account felt the need to rebut it.

Now, sometimes I get it when mainstream publications completely misunderstand a long running franchise, like a couple of years ago when they did the hapless “Nedna” thing.  Anyone still bothering to watch knew it wouldn’t matter in the least if they stayed a couple, but news from Springfield equals pageviews, so everyone wrote it up anyway.  But to think that Homer and Marge are permanently divorcing on a show like Zombie Simpsons is a whole other matter, especially when one or two clicks is all it takes to get to the original that clearly states that it’s just for a single episode.

Partly this is due to the Lena Dunham Effect.  She causes all kinds of people to flip out and yell at each other for reasons that I cannot fathom.  (I’ve never understood square dancing either.  Some things in life are mysteries.)  If this had been just about anybody else, I doubt it would’ve blown up this big.

But Dunham wasn’t the cause.  The cause was CNN writing up three day old news with a headline and teaser that strongly implied something that the article itself was basically silent on.  So, thanks for wasting everybody’s time.

On the bright side, and even though it was unintentional, the sheer reach of this easily debunked rumor might be the most biting satire of the media the show has done in fifteen years.  The links below are by no means an exhaustive list of the major publications, old and new, that apparently consider two clicks to be too much fact checking.

Anyway, I did manage to pick out a few fun regular links from all that nonsense.  This week, we’ve got a donut sensation, a metal band that uses Simpsons quotes in their lyrics, a fan made hat, a great story about “Who Shot Mr. Burns”, and more.

Enjoy.

The making of “Who Shot Mr. Burns?” – Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week is this great article from the A.V. Club about the show’s famous cliffhanger.

Eye On Springfield with Jono Colliver of Dr. Colossus – Awesome:

There is a fine line a band has to walk when writing songs based on TV shows or movies. Do you full on quote from the source material or do you try to compose your own lyrics? Do you try to make your band funny or keep it serious? Add to that something as serious as heavy metal and it seems like an impossible task. Enter Australian doom metal/rock band, Dr. Colossus. Consisting of Nathan Johnston on drums and Jono Colliver on guitar and vocals, the two piece manages to meld some seriously good doom with lyrics all based off episodes of The Simpsons. Combining original lyrics with classic lines taken straight from the show, the lyrics paint a cryptic picture while also adding a fun feel any time you recognize a quote from the show.

What if The Simpsons Had Only Lasted One Season? – The world would be a dark and terrible place and even newscasts would have laughtracks (via @DailySimpsons).

7 Times Marge Simpson Should Have Divorced Homer – And here we go with the divorce links.  Uproxx at least realized it was a joke, but then went ahead with a very Zombie Simpsons heavy list.

Worst. Idea. Ever. Marge and Homer will ‘legally separate’ on ‘The Simpsons’ – First up on our list of total shame, The USA Today:

In the equivalent of The Brady Bunch adding Cousin Oliver, The Cosby Show adding Olivia or any other aging sitcom adding a new character (usually under six years old) that doesn’t have a Oliv- prefix in order to spice up plot lines and stories that have become stale, The Simpsons will have Homer and Marge “legally separate” in the 479th season premiere of the Fox animated show. Or maybe it’s the 27th season — does it really matter anymore?

Simpsons producer Al Jean described this desperate attempt at relevancy interesting twist to Variety.

While it agrees with us that the show is garbage now, it’s not exactly helping the cause.  The whole thing is very sarcastic, which is not a tone you want to deploy when you’re being this gullible.

The Simpsons: Homer and Marge Split Will Join Other Famous TV Breakups – While we’re in the “Print Publications No One Will Miss” category, Time magazine, everybody:

What’s surprising about The Simpsons returning to this well is that the show hardly needs to; it’s not as though Homer or Marge is going to be written off the show. With few exceptions, the show resets back to where it began at the end of every episode.
But perhaps that makes The Simpsons ideally placed to feature divorce; so few comedies deal with the end of a marriage as something other than a way to expediently get someone out of your life forever that The Simpsons‘s reconciliation plotline will, at least, be novel.

I read this article twice, looking for any sign that they understood that this wasn’t permanent.  Zilch.

After 35 years, Homer and Marge Simpson are breaking up – But let’s not limit ourselves to old media, here’s new media darling Vox going all in on it.

Homer, Marge separated (or not) when new season of ‘The Simpsons’ begins – After using the word “revelation” un-ironically, Canada’s Global News at least had the decency to add that, “Jean took to Twitter to seemingly suggest he was playing the media for fools.”.  Seemingly?  What about this is so hard for people to get?

Marge and Homer Simpson to call it quits (thanks, Lena Dunham) – This one’s a twofer, as it’s Canada’s National Post unthinkingly reprinting a writeup in the Washington Post: 

Yes, Marge will be as blue as her towering hair, because Homer seeks a cure for his narcolepsy, and soon “falls in love” with the woman who can treat what ails him: a pharmacist voiced by Girls actress-writer Lena Dunham.
[…]
Homer and Marge have physically split before — such as when Alaska beckons in The Simpsons Movie — but have never legally separated.

Simpsons bosses set the record straight on Homer and Marge’s ‘separation’ – Metro UK bought it hook, line and sinker, even after the correction.

‘View’s’ Whoopi Goldberg on Homer Simpson Leaving Marge for Lena Dunham: ‘What About a Sister?’ – This is another twofer, with an uncritical writeup from entertainment industry rag The Wrap about the ladies on The View complaining about this.  It’s also evidence for my Dunham Effect theory, when Whoopi Goldberg says it’s Dunham, they put up this graphic and the crowd gives one of those “Ooohs” of disapproval:

BooLenaDunhamBooThisWoman

I could do twenty more of these, but I think I’ve made my point.  Fuck you, CNN.

The Simpsons Nancy Cartwright Is Working On Her Own Animated Series ♫ theMusic.com.au – Hey, look, actual news that got swamped by panicky idiocy:

In an interview with theMusic.com.au’s Daniel Cribb, Cartwright – who you probably know as the voice of Bart Simpson, Ralph Wiggum, and wealth of other Springfield characters – revealed she has been developing an animated comedy series called Unassisted Living.
“We’re in development and pitching, but it is fully fleshed out and ready to go,” Cartwright revealed.
“It takes place in a retirement facility and everybody thinks they’re dying and somebody comes in to run the place that is only 22 years old and she gets them all working and contributing.

I’d give that a shot.

Sideshow Bob to finally get his boy – Enh.  Even the Halloween episodes are lifeless these days.

Here Are 10 Times ‘The Simpsons’ Predicted the Future – Some of these are a bit of a stretch, but if you’ve got six minutes to kill, you could do worse.

The 5 Worst Sitcom Doctors Of All-Time – Needless to say Dr. Nick makes the list.  There’s also a lot of good YouTube (Simpsons and otherwise).

DIY Painted Sun Hat – Turning a sun hat into a fan made Simpsons masterpiece.  Bravo!

Donutella-uva bomb: the experience – Excellent real life reference:

He couldn’t bloody believe it. Neither did I. I made him re-tell several parts of his story bit by bit. “And this is the milkbar I used to hang out at? Corner Vic Drive and Carrington?” I was still in disbelief.
“Yes.”
He said it was crazy like the ‘Flaming Moe’s’ fad from that popular Simpsons episode. Everyone was going there, everyone wanted one, and it was making the people mad. A little place, turned into a sensation, just because of a simple variation on a regular food item. Nothing extraordinary. Just Nutella on a doughnut.

90s Bart Simpson Radical Dude Don’t Have a Cow Original 1989 White Vintage t-shirt Youth Large – Everything old is new again.

Ralph Wiggum T-Shirt | Ralph Laurel – Heh.

Sounds of the City: Springfield! Springfield! – An appreciation of the music of the city, with some excellent YouTube.

New trending GIF tagged food the simpsons eating… – Well, well, well, finishing something?

New trending GIF tagged dancing the simpsons eating… – At the Copa, Copacabana!

New trending GIF tagged reaction sexy the simpsons… – Oh, what the heck, give me your number.

It’s time to finally end The Simpsons – And finally, I get to end the way I like, with someone who agrees with us:

Dear Al Jean, Matt Groening, Jebus, and anyone else who might be listening:
It’s time for The Simpsons to end.
Year after year, I watch the venerable cultural monolith that helped shape me as a person wither and twist in the wind – and I wish that it hadn’t come to this.
A show that was once defined by unparalleled writing, topical humour and brilliant voice acting has been reduced to a gimmicky, one-note shadow of itself that exists more as a merchandising vessel than as the greatest sitcom of our time.

He then calls the Dunhan thing as an “obvious gimmick”.  Amen, sir.  (Click through for the bitchin’ Blinky tattoo, as well.)

12
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Homerland

“And this is just the beginning.  I’ve got some big plans.” – Homer Simpson
“It smells funny in there.” – Imaginary Milhouse
“No it doesn’t.” – Homer Simpson

11
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Goodbye

“Pick the red, get ahead!  Pick the black, set you back!” – Bart Simpson
“I don’t recall authorizing this booth.” – Principal Skinner
“Goodbye, gentlemen.” – Bart Simpson

10
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Radioactive Man12

“We have thirty million dollars to spend.” – Producer
“We’ll blow up our dams, destroy forests, anything!  If there’s a species of animal that’s causing you problems, nosing around your camera, we’ll have it wiped out!” – Mayor Quimby

09
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

$pringfield17

“I’ll design it myself, I know what people like!  It’s got to have sex appeal and a catchy name.” – C.M. Burns

08
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Deep Space Homer12

“I, uh, don’t think this contest is over yet, Buzz, if that is your real name.  I believe there is still a little something called the swimsuit competition.” – Homer Simpson
“There’s no swimsuit competition, Homer.” – NASA Guy
“You mean I shaved my bikini zone for nothing?” – Homer Simpson

07
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Homer to the Max3

“Wow, look at this place.  The house number is spelled out with letters.” – Marge Simpson
“Get used to it, honey.  From now on we’ll be spelling everything with letters.” – Homer Simpson

06
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Principal Charming11

“Bart, I’m flabbergasted!  Surely you knew as you were writing your own name in forty-foot high letters on the field that you would be caught.” – Principal Skinner
“Maybe it was one of the other Barts, sir.” – Bart Simpson
“There are no other Barts!” – Principal Skinner

Sam Simon would’ve been sixty-years-old today. Happy birthday.

05
Jun
15

Reading Digest: Pondering the Absence of Shearer Edition

Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk13

“Oh, sir, what will you do next?” – Mr. Smithers
“Well, first I’ll get that new hip I’ve been hankering for, then, who knows?  Beekeeping, boxing, bocce ball, the world is my oyster, Smithers!  Farewell.” – C.M. Burns

I’m finally digging out all the Shearer related stuff I didn’t have time to get to over the last couple of weeks, and I have found a couple of gems.  There’s a Hollywood insider take, a journalist take, and a fan take, all on what his (potential) leaving means for the show.  In addition to that, we’ve got some excellent references, great fan art, a bunch of .gifs, and a wildly dickish local news team.

Enjoy.

Harry Shearer’s excellent Simpsons adventure – Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week is this Hollywood insider perspective on Shearer’s situation from a longtime TV writer who actually knows him:

“What is he thinking?” asked dozens of text messages from people who know that we’re friends. “Is he insane?”
He is not insane, I told them. Harry Shearer is a fantastically gifted writer-performer-director, and after 26 years of voicing the characters of Mr Burns, his devoted assistant Smithers, school principal Skinner, irritating neighbour Ned Flanders, and many others, Harry simply decided to do something else.
“He’s ill, isn’t he?” asked one person. No, I said. He isn’t ill, either mentally or physically. He just can’t see how he’ll be able to devote the time his future projects require if he’s also committed to several more years of The Simpsons.

He goes on to make the case that the money is the least important part of this.  I still don’t know whether or not Shearer’s actually leaving, but this is very good perspective.

Why a Shearer-less ‘Simpsons’ can survive – I like this article.  The basic premise is that the show sucks anyway so who cares if they replace Shearer?

Variety bash team Simpsons Car 1111 hosts a charity golf day – That is phenomenal Simpsons swag from Australia.

Q & A With Bill Oakley on Portland Playhouse’s “Mr. Burns: A Post-Electric Play” – Heh:

Have you seen the play? If no, why not? If yes, thoughts?

BO: I have not seen the play because I do not like to leave my house. If they want to come over here and perform it, I can push back a couch in the living room and maybe provide Cheetos and Snapple.

And:

There have been so many celebrity cameos on The Simpsons. Who has not been on the show yet that you would like to see make an appearance.

BO: We could never get Stockard Channing to appear on the show for some reason and I’m pretty sure she is still alive. So STOCKARD CHANNING it is.

The Simpsons – Absolutely outstanding Simpsons tablecloth which can be yours on Etsy for $200.  Click through for lots of detailed pictures and real Simpsons love:

The tablecloth was found in a thrift store, like all of my accoutrements. The lace edge and sunshine yellow called my name, screamed my name, and I was truly giddy taking it home. I first envisioned stitching Yellow Submarine on this gem. When The Simpsons also came to mind, I went with the franchise I felt was less likely to sue me.

Heh.

Breaking Bad, Simpsons, True Detective Fictional Foods – The Duff can and Krusty burger are phenomenal.

The War Of The Simpsons – Fantastic line:

“…That music always sends a chill down my spine…”

TV Legends Revealed: What’s the Secret, Lazy Origin of ‘The Simpsons’ Opening? – Time has always been hard to fill, no doubts there.

Sepp Blatter…In 10 Words – He’s crossed that line from everyday villainy into cartoonish super-villainy.

FOX 46 Charlotte – Bart Simpson graffiti sticks again, City of CLT says it needs to – See, this is why nobody likes local news:

The City was unaware of the NoDa graffiti until FOX 46 News notified them. There has been no word yet from the owner of the apartments if the graffiti will stay.

The media called the cops.  Boy, you guys suck.  There are, of course, good pictures at the link, if you’re interested.

Model Antonina Petkovic’s Simpsons T-Shirt – Apparently, Bart can be “grungy-chic”.

19-year veteran AP English teacher fired for reading Allen Ginsberg poem to class – Excellent reference:

Oilo’s colleagues, friends, and students were quick to defend him. Said one former student “There has been a definite tonal change since I grew up here. It makes me think of Mrs. Flanders from The Simpsons: ‘Will no one think of the children??’ I mean, if there are parents in town who think their teenagers don’t know what a blow job is, they are sorely mistaken.”

We got to Check Out The Simpsons Springfield Grand Opening at Universal Studios, Hollywood! – There was a ceremony at an amusement park.  Here’s a 1 minute YouTube video of it.

The Simpsons, Doctor Who, More Coming to Lego Dimensions – It took awhile, but Lego turned into the King of Licensing so gradually, I didn’t even notice:

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today confirmed that its Lego Dimensions title, slated for release this fall, will include gameplay from The Simpsons, Doctor Who, Ghostbusters, Jurassic World, Scooby-Doo!, Portal, Midway Arcade, and Lego Chima.

4 Reasons Why ‘Simpsons’ Dimwit Ralph Wiggum Might Be Secretly Smart – He’s not, but that was a decent read with plenty of good YouTube and no Zombie Simpsons.

Eye On Springfield with Dan Jackson of Void Ritual & Desu – This blog is called “Xtapolapometal”, “A blog about metal and The Simpsons”.  Excellent.  (Also, the interview is good, too.)

Eye On Springfield with Chris Alfieri of Vattnet Viskar – Same blog as above:

It depends on my mood really, I do like when they take on cultural issues without trying to outwardly make a fool out of people who may not share their view. They have a lot of tact which I respect a ton. But occasionally I just need to see a brainless but well written episode like the Trilogy of Error episode.

That is a great way to describe “Trilogy of Error”.

Disney princesses and Marge Simpson turned into breast cancer survivors to celebrate ‘courage’ – This is by that same Italian artists who’s been doing these lately.

Simpsons joke origins: Sideshow Bob’s campaign ad – And to think, that commercial was only aired a single time.

Someone has made the actual gummy Venus De Milo from The Simpsons and it’s incredible – This is at least the second time someone’s done this, and maybe the third.  Bravo, everyone.

Hall and Oates – An essay about Homer (well, non-Zombie Homer, anyway) as a classic Fool.

Homer’s Heaven – Lego Homer, real donut.

Five Fandom Friday: Five Characters That Get Me – Lisa tops the list, but it’s nice to see Wednesday Addams on there too.

5 Fandom Friday: 5 Fictional Characters You Most Identify With – Homer makes this one.

Photo of the day: Christen Press and Christen Press – One of our forwards got life size Simpsonsized.

The Simpsons: Hit & Run – Old video game review complete with .gifs.

New trending GIF tagged the simpsons simpsons homer… – Clean as a whistle!

New trending GIF tagged the simpsons simpsons smoking… – He’s got money to singe!

New trending GIF tagged the simpsons bye goodbye… – Poochie goes home.

Etsy: Patty and Selma Cross Stitch – It’s not just Patty & Selama, it’s Patty & Selma freshly back from the beauty parlor.

Tristin Hopper: Like the Vatican, the Church of the Simpsons will go on – And finally, I get to end with someone who not only agrees with us, but does so in rousing, theological ways:

For someone who grew up on the Simpsons but stopped watching in the 1990s, seeing a contemporary episode is akin to Jesus Christ walking into the Vatican. The basic tenets may be familiar, but the presentation is shockingly dissimilar from its origins.

Throw out the heretics!

05
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Lisa's Sax15

“We’ve needed a new air conditioner for years!  And our stop gap solution is getting cranky.” – Homer Simpson

04
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Colonel Homer16

“Ooh, a redneck bar.” – Homer Simpson
“Hey, you, let’s fight!” – Redneck #1
“Thems fightin’ words!” – Redneck #2

03
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Bart of Darkness15

“Looks like it’s just you and me, Barty-boy.” – Bart’s Brain
“Oh, great, I get to spend the summer with my brain.” – Bart Simpson

02
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

Brother From the Same Planet16

“Bart Simpson?” – Tom
“Yo!” – Bart Simpson
“I’m Tom.  Let’s ride.” – Tom
“Bart’s Dad has really pulled himself together.” – Martin Prince

01
Jun
15

Quote of the Day

King Size Homer22

“If you gain sixty-one pounds, they’ll let you work at home?” – Bart Simpson
“That’s the deal.  No more exercise program, no more traffic, no more blood drives or charity walks!” – Homer Simpson




E-Mail

deadhomersociety (at) gmail

Run a Simpsons site or Twitter account? Let us know!

The Mob Has Spoken

Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Ah Hee Hee Hee on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Ezra Estephan on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch
Anonymous on Homeronymus Bosch

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Reruns

Useful Legal Tidbit

Even though it’s obvious to anyone with a functional frontal lobe and a shred of morality, we feel the need to include this disclaimer. This website (which openly advocates for the cancellation of a beloved television series) is in no way, shape or form affiliated with the FOX Network, the News Corporation, subsidiaries thereof, or any of Rupert Murdoch’s wives or children. “The Simpsons” is (unfortunately) the intellectual property of FOX. We and our crack team of one (1) lawyer believe that everything on this site falls under the definition of Fair Use and is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. No revenue is generated from this endeavor; we’re here because we love “The Simpsons”. And besides, you can’t like, own a potato, man, it’s one of Mother Earth’s creatures.