NOISELAND ARCADE

A mashup image of The Simpsons: Bug Squad!

Looks like Cyberpunk 2077 isn’t the only unfinished game with bugs in it!!!!!!

Cyberhackers have uncovered a tech demo for what was initially assumed to be a never-produced Simpsons video game for the Sega Dreamcast, titled The Simpsons: Bug Squad!. Produced by the now-defunct Red Lemon Studios in late 2000 to demonstrate its Toon Renderer engine to Fox Interactive, the demo consists solely of a roach clad in military gear that can jump around a cel-shaded Simpsons kitchen and TV room while Homer walks around. pcwzrd13, who got the demo to work, produced a video playthrough. Others, like Stranno, managed to get outside to the backyard, where Bart is also walking around.

Andy Campbell, a co-founder of Red Lemon Studios, clarified some things on Twitter:

Speaking of unreleased Simpsons video game stuff, series producer Matt Selman revealed last summer that his favorite Simpsons game to work on was an unreleased Mario Party-like game. The unexpected discovery of The Simpsons: Bug Squad! gives hope that perhaps we’ll get to see it someday, along with who knows what else…

[Dreamcast-Talk.com]

MY TWO CENTS, SPRINGFIELD SHOPPER

armour hot dogs

Shocking news for Simpsons fans concerned about the artistic integrity of an episode based entirely around a name-brand product: it turns out The Simpsons‘s upcoming 30 minute LEGO commercial was partially funded and essentially proposed by The LEGO Group.

Entertainment Weekly casually mentioned The LEGO Group’s financial stake in the episode in an interview with producers Matt Selman and Brian Kelley:

Lego helped pay for the episode. How much input did the company have into the creative side? I understand that there was a sex scene between Lego Homer and Lego Marge that they wanted to tone down.


KELLEY:

Let’s say we had a lot of fun with the Lego sex scene, and I’m not surprised that it was a little too risque. But we’ll always treasure the memory. [Laughs] They were good partners. Our audience is slightly older than their audience, so they would occasionally have concerns, but all the words in the episode are ours. If they had an objection, which they did on very rare occasions, we’d find a way around it.

Good to know that a show with “a near-total absence of network interference” (virtually unheard of in the industry) is now taking notes from a toy company.

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WRITER WATCH

Matt SelmanSplitsider did a pretty good interview with current Simpsons writer (and rubbercat.net/simpsons reader) Matt Selman. About half of it is just plugging his latest episode, Homer the Hipster (which he’s already defending), but there’s still some good insights. Selman talks about his thoughts on a final episode, how those lazy layabouts Tom Gammill and Max Pross have finally – after being on the writing staff for over a decade – written an episode, how the staff tries to make sure the show doesn’t feel like a Jay Leno monologue (except, uh, when they actually do Leno monologues), and getting fired from Seinfeld. Then the interviewer gets him to tell the “Mayor of St. Louis” story, which is pretty funny:

It’s starting to get very awkward because he’s sort of addressing his whole speech to me and putting me on the spot and humiliating me and saying, “Who said this about East St. Louis? Have you ever been to East St. Louis?” I’m feeling very uncomfortable and awkward. ‘Oh man, I’m so dead.’ I unfortunately showed my true colors by selling out the others writers by saying that I didn’t write the joke in the show about East St. Louis [and] someone else wrote it [and] we all wrote it together, even though my name was on the script.

There you have it: by his own admission, Matt Selman is a gullible liar, a man who should not be trusted, but is also incredibly trusting. So dark, the duplicity of man.

[Splitsider]

WRITER WATCH

marge surprisedWriter/producer Matt Selman and former writer/murderer Dana Gould are doing a “thing” this Thursday at Meltdown Comics in Los Angeles. If you pay them 10 bucks, they will regale you with anecdotes about working for The Simpsons in the post-funny era, answer questions about wizard keys, as well as – and this is the important part – give you all the backstage dirt, like “Who punched a box?” If any of you readers out there end up going to this thing, please please please tell me who punched the box. I desperately need to know.

[NerdMelt]

AZTEC THEATRE

Famous comedy duo “Eric & Tim” appeared in the sure-to-be-classic “Marge Becomes A Food Blogger” episode of The Simpsons last night and sang a rap song about being a foodie, which you can watch below courtesy of YouTube user “MelZtube80.”

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WRITER WATCH

mike reissClassic Simpsons writer Mike Reiss usurped current Simpsons writer Matt Selman’s Xanga page to spin a sordid tale of lies, deceit, greed, and avarice. In the cutthroat world of children’s literature, celebrities have all the advantage, while run-of-the mill schlubs like Emmy Award-winning comedy writer Mike Reiss are forced to eat bowls of tough breaks for brunch. It seems a certain “Steve Martin,” famous person and noted bluegrass musician, penned a little book titled Late for School (adapted from the song by the same name), which as M. Reiss points out, is uncannily similar to Reiss’s 2003 book, also titled Late for School:

Both tell the story of a boy facing adventure on a mad dash for school. Both are written in verse. Both have the boy jumping over a pool (it rhymes with school). The biggest difference is that my book’s final twist has the boy arriving at school right on time, and then – spoiler alert! – realizing it’s Sunday. In Steve Martin’s book, it’s Saturday.

Well, well, well. Looks like these celebrity punks who’ve been taking picture book jobs away from real Americans are finally going to get their comeuppance. Reiss is holding all the cards here. Undoubtedly, he’ll slap Martin with a lawsuit so fast his head will explode. This will be the literary theft case of the decade. This will be —

I’m not saying Steve ripped off my book, or even knew it existed. Steve Martin is a brilliant comedian, playwright and novelist. I’m thrilled that we had the exact same idea. And that I had it seven years earlier.

I… b-but…. whaaa?…. *sputters incoherently* [Techland]

ROCK BOTTOM

In an episode aired in early 2003, Homer’s e-mail address is revealed to be Chunkylover53@aol.com. E-mails sent to that address would receive a response from “Homer,” which was actually written by writer Matt Selman (see some of the responses here). That account has remained largely dormant until recently, when it resurfaced on AIM to spread malware to those who had added “Homer” to their buddy list:

Since then, the screen name has been inactive, until a few days ago when Chunkylover53’s “Away” message appeared, prompting people to click on a link and run an executable in order to see “a *new* Internet-only exclusive Simpson’s episode.”

Of course, the file doesn’t show a Simpsons video. It infects the machine with a Trojan that throws up error messages, crashes the computer when attempting to open Windows Explorer and drops other nasty files onto the machine, making it part of what is believed to be a Turkish botnet, according to FaceTime, which secures IM, collaboration and Web apps for corporations.

The real question: why are Matt Selman and his Simpsons co-workers spreading viruses to their fans??? Developing… [CNET]