The Simpsons homage to legendary anime director Hayao Miyazaki that delighted the internet a month or two ago was apparently ten years in the making:
The Simpsons executive producer Al Jean said his team had been trying to work in an homage to Miyazaki on their show for at least a decade, but the eventual episode — in which Comic Book Guy marries a woman from Japan — was well underway before the filmmaker announced his retirement.
In the episode, Homer gets drunk with the Japanese woman’s father for no apparent reason, they have an anime dream because Japan, and the father realizes he should let his daughter be with Comic Book Guy because he sees his face on No-Face from Spirited Away. The whole sequence is rather disjointed from the rest of the episode, and the awkward attempt to justify its inclusion by making it the story’s climax makes for a weird, lazy plot progression (problem → get drunk → problem solved). If the episode was created just so the writers could finally put in a Miyazaki tribute they’d been wanting to put in for over a decade, you’d think they could’ve worked it in better.
Oh, and Miyazaki hasn’t even seen it.
To the surprise of no one, Simpsons showrunner Al Jean told Entertainment Weekly he’d like to see the show continue past the 25 seasons guaranteed by Friday’s re-negotiation deal:
“I honestly think that 30 is a goal to shoot for. I want to put The Simpsons at 30 seasons before the end of the decade,” he quips, nodding to John F. Kennedy’s moon speech. “Forty sounds insane, but 25 sounded insane 20 years ago. Having seen how far it’s gone, it’s not for me to cap it… And Gunsmoke did 635 episodes [a record for a prime-time series], so that’s something to shoot for, too.”
Even though he’s supposedly quipping, keep in mind he can recite how many episodes Gunsmoke did off-hand. Please, nobody tell him about the animes.
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Wikipedia user “a metal shard” has blown the doors off the biggest plagiarism scandal to rock the animation world since the Lion King/Kimba the White Lion fiasco of 1994:
Neon Genesis: Evangelion—theme?
While viewing the movie, I was reminded several times throughout of the old Anime: 1. The corporation EPA and their helicopters = NGE’s EVA and their large scale assaults + heli’s are almost identical 2. Dome = Angel’s shields (were they called AT Fields?) 3. Homer’s Epiphany = Shinji’s numerous experiences, almost identical, with the clapping hands and such, 3.5 the boob-ladie’s blowing into Homer’s mouth remind me of the NGA’s women cleavage and kissing scene (during Shinji’s dream?). 4. Homer’s pig = Masato’s penguin
A naysayer attempts to shoot down his theories, forcing a metal shard to respond with these sage words of wisdom: “Maybe if you had seen the anime show, watched the movies, played the games, read the manga, or set foot in Japan, you wouldn’t be so quick to claim that I was implying anything…” Don’t let the bastards grind you down, a metal shard! Keep on fighting the good fight! [Wikipedia]
Girl draws an anime version of The Simpsons which gets posted all over the internet, gets a job offer from the comics company that makes Simpsons comics. More people on DeviantArt try anime-izing other Western cartoons in attempt to achieve their own 15 minutes of internet fame. Digg, modest as ever, downplays its role, if any, in parlaying the job offer. [The Star]