Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Simpsons: To Infinity (or 500) and Beyond!

How many of you saw the 500th (!) episode of THE SIMPSONS last Sunday evening, February 19, 2012?

First, WHAT AN ACHIEVEMENT! 500 episodes!!! That’ll make for a LOT of DVDs!

The series began in late 1989 (!) and still runs new today! There are ADULTS that have never known life without THE SIMPSONS!

But, more to my point…

Not far short of TWO DECADES AGO (!) – I just can’t help the parenthetical exclamation points – I can recall a discussion with Friend of This Blog Chris Barat on what the final episode of THE SIMPSONS might be like!

One of us – by now, I can’t recall who – suggested that The Simpsons’ hometown of Springfield be blown-up, or otherwise destroyed as a suitable finale – or some such thing that will leave a lasting impression, and will forever change your perception of the series.

…Yeah, I’m talking to YOU, “St. Elsewhere”! And, maybe YOU, “Lost”! (But, I digress!)

NO SPOILERS: But *that* didn’t exactly happen in the vaunted Episode 500, but something close enough DID (with echoes of a particularly bizarre episode of PINKY AND THE BRAIN for good measure), to remind me of that long-ago fannish conversation.

Indeed, this would have actually made a fine “Series Finale”, considering the events of the last 2-3 minutes.

Given this, I can’t help but wonder what they actually DO have in store for us when the series finally concludes. I CAN WAIT a while (preferably, a LONG while) before finding out, though!


Pete Fernbaugh said...

Hey Joe:

Been away for awhile for a few personal reasons, but I couldn't resist commenting on this.

Michael Landon's "Little House on the Prairie" (don't laugh) ended exactly the way you and Chris figured "The Simpsons" should end.

The townspeople blew Walnut Grove up...something to do with greedy investors taking over. I can't exactly remember.

It was a decent (and shocking) ending to a "family" series.

Much better than the "Lost" finale. I still hold that one as among the Top 10 *worst* finales in TV history. You string your fans along for six years, raise all sorts of tantalizing questions of seemingly paramount importance...

...then you conclude by saying, "Eh, none of those questions ever really mattered (you boobs). They were dead all along. Bwahahahahahah."


I digress...

joecab said...

I remember well: the Simpsons becoming a regular series was half of the reason I bought my first VCR in 1990. (The Little Mermaid coming out on VHS was the other half; that was the first movie Disney released months after its original run.)

Never would have believed it was still going to be running to this very day though!

Joe Torcivia said...


I don’t really begin worrying about you until 90 days have passed without a murmur. (Most readers are not aware that, over the years, Pete has been my personal “Mr. Mxyzptlk” popping in and out at will. Only difference is that, unlike Superman, I enjoy his appearances!

They BLEW UP Walnut grove?! Really?! Wow! Next thing you know, you’ll be telling me that Kevin Hagen (the beloved “Doc Baker”) became a VILLAIN again, just like he was on ALL of the Irwin Allen shows! You can’t believe in NUTHIN’ no more!

Seriously, I did not know that! …Oh, and thanks for spoiling LOST without a “warning”, for the one or two people who are probably still working their way through “The Complete Series” set on DVD, and haven’t reached the end yet! You, extra-dimensional trickster, you! :-)

Okay, time to say “Etep”! …Bye!


Joe C.:

Unlike Pete (or “Etep”), YOU can stay!

My first VCR (1982) was actually a RENTAL, as they cost too much to buy! Can you imagine that today? And a remarkably good price for blank VHS tapes was 11.95 each, on the streets of Manhattan.

And, as long as we’re traveling back, I didn’t catch up with THE SIMPSONS until later in the Second Season – because (DC diehard that I am) I was watching… THE FLASH!

But, now that we’ve lived through the utter destruction of Walnut Grove, and the “Whatever-Spoiler-Thing-Happened To-In-Around-or-About-Springfield” (Nyaah, Pete!), we all have DVD and/or Blu-ray players – and we all have FOURTEEN Seasons of THE SIMPSONS – and also the odd, out-of-sequence release of Season 20 – to enjoy whenever we want. I just watched the “Joe Namath episode”, recently, just on a whim! Same for “Frank Grimes” and “Shary Bobbins” .

Only downside is that we’re STILL missing SEVEN seasons, or so! …D’oh!

Joe (…rhymes with “so” and “D’oh!”)

Chris Barat said...

Joe and Pete,

I recall pretty distinctly that I was the one who suggested that THE SIMPSONS bow out with that LITTLE HOUSE tribute.

Of course, I could be wrong... they could REALLY surprise us and parody the end of the second Bob Newhart show. To wit, "modern, semi-slick" Homer wakes up to find himself in his cruder, TRACY ULLMAN SHOW physical form and realizes that the preceding xxx episodes have in fact been a dream! Now that, to quote Nelson, would be a real "hah hah" to the audience, nearly matching that of LOST!


Joe Torcivia said...


Thank you for lifting the haze of long-ago conversations past! (We sure had lots of FUN in those old days, didn’t we?) Yes, that WAS your suggestion, and pardon my failing memory!

And, true to form, you’ve come up with ANOTHER great possible ending scenario for THE SIMPSONS!

Though the “Ullman Homer” DID make an appearance in Season 14’s installment of “Treehouse of Horror” (recently released on DVD) – and, this season, FAMILY GUY did another of those wonderful “Brian and Stewie Time, Space, and Dimensional Travel” episodes (as you saw with “Road to the Multiverse”, while visiting at New Year’s) where they travel back into the middle of their FIRST EPISODE – and you get to see that plot unfold all over again – and enjoy all the differences that have crept into that show over the years.

But still, your idea is VERY intriguing! I’d love to see it!

And, don’t let “MXY Pete” sour you on LOST! Watch it from beginning to end – all six seasons. It will be the greatest “Modern TV” experience you will EVER have!