The Simpsons writer/The Doozies drawer Tom Gammill and his best friend Cathy Guisewite (creator of Cathy) recently visited the Ernie Bushmiller Museum to pay their respects to the creator of Nancy and Sluggo. This video is a MUST-WATCH if you are a big Nancy fan!!!
Some nerdlinger made a “video coat” made up of little LED screens that allows the wearer to show Simpsons episodes and other videos on their jacket. I guess it’s similar to Nam June Paik and Charlotte Moorman’s TV-Bra for Living Sculpture (1969), except less likely to give you cancer, maybe. Doesn’t this seem like something out of a bad sci-fi movie about obtrusive advertising in the future? If this gets out of hand, Fox will have to join forces with the Fashion Police to stop bootleggers.
Oprah Winfrey ended her show today, y’all! Back in 1992, she interviewed the Simpsons in a dopey 2-minute animated segment. Later, she refused to grant Fox the rights to include it on a Simpsons DVD, preferring to throw it down the memory hole. Luckily, someone taped it and uploaded it to YouTube:
First, some background: in fall 1990, Fox moved The Simpsons to Thursday nights in a heavily publicized move to compete head-on with The Cosby Show, which was then the reigning television champion. Eventually, The Simpsons managed to overtake Cosby in the ratings, and in June 1991, Bill Cosby announced the following season would be the show’s last. The final episode of The Cosby Show aired on April 30th, 1992. The Simpsons paid its respects with a hastily-assembled homage added to that night’s episode, a rerun of “Three Men and a Comic Book,” with Bart issuing an awfully prescient warning for viewers. It only aired that one time and was thought by many to be lost to the sands of time. Luckily, anything that has ever aired on television in the past fifty years will eventually resurface on YouTube:
Earlier this year, some radio show noticed that singer-songwriter Usher’s chart-topping hit song “OMG” sounds remarkably like a song Homer Simpson tried to compose in the particularly awful 2003 episode “Dude, Where’s My Ranch?” Judge for yourself:
I don’t believe Mr. Usher intentionally committed songtheft. Like most of us who watched that episode, he must have tried to block it from his mind, but no matter how hard we try to repress our memories of Current Simpsons, bits and pieces still manage to escape. Try as I might, I can’t forget about Sideshow Bob Jr., or that Snowball II is actually Snowball V now, or the time Homer was Kurt Cobain for some reason. In Usher’s case, that little ditty somehow seeped through his mental blockade, years later and drained of its context, and because of cryptomnesia, he thought he’d come up with the tune himself and then proceeded to turn it into a hit single.
Unfortunately for him, this is not the first time he has been accused of plagiarizing a non-human. Last year, a devastating expose revealed he had stolen the opening of “Papers” from a goat. [YouTube via @ShawnElliot]
p>Everybody’s favorite Taiwanese animation studio, Next Media Animation, has made another one of their trademark CGI news reports about the Simpsons/Fox News pseudo-rivalry, exposing the Simpsons writers’ secret creative process and Rupert Murdoch’s shark fetish:
The Simpsons now joins Jersey Shore and Conan in an exclusive club of TV shows that have been NMAted, which is a verb I just made up and will be charging royalties for. [Next Media Animation via Cartoon Brew]
If you were one of the people watching The Simpsons last night (sucker), you may have noticed something a little different about the opening sequence!
The “couch gag,” if one could call it that, was storyboarded and directed by the pseudonymous Britain street artist known as Banksy, whose distinctive graffiti has shown up across the UK and the US, and whose work has been auctioned off for millions of dollars to limousine liberal luminaries like Brangelina.
Showrunner-for-life Al Jean told the New York Times he seeked out the ostensibly underground (despite having a publicist) “art terrorist” and asked him, via a series of messengers, if he’d do the opening, later receiving the storyboards without ever meeting the mystery man. Although 5% was cut out by request of Fox Broadcast & Standards, Jean insists the final product was as close as possible to Banksy’s original intention.
The response has been enormous – Banksy became a “Trending Topic” on Twitter last night (which is, like, super-important and stuff) and there are currently hundreds of news stories about it – which I’m sure makes up for the 29% decline in ratings from last week. It’s to quantify these things, but I think it’s safe to presume this will get more attention than other recent Simpsons “viral” stunts, from the godawful Ke$ha thing to the Itchy & Scratchy parody of Koyaanisqatsi (in the old days, The Simpsons usually generated buzz with actual episodes instead of context-free YouTube clips, but I guess that’s the way things are now in the New Media Landscape).
On an upcoming episode of Top Chef Masters (May 12 on Bravo) some top chefs have to chef up some foods for Simpsons characters, which will be judged by Matt Groening, Hank Azaria and writer Matt Selman.
Due to Film Roman’s inability to meet their demands for “faster, better, cheaper” animation, Simpsons producers have switched animation studios for the first time since 1992. Starting next season, The Simpsons will be primarily animated by a small animation studio in post-Soviet Georgia. Here’s a preview clip:
Some guy made an incredibly detailed “Springfield” skin for Quake III Arena, with all kinds of nerd-salivating props from past episodes – Big Butt Skinner balloon, pig tracks on the ceiling, etc. Hopefully Fox Interactive, hot off the heels of Simpsons Crazy Taxi, Simpsons Grand Theft Auto and Simpsons Myst will hire this guy to make the next Simpsons video game, Simpsons Quake.