March 11, 2004

Simpsons Lament

The Simpsons are utterly amazing, let me be the first to admit. I have the videos, DVDs, CDs, comic books, plot guides, calendars, and other merchandise. I watch it religiously... and tape it. I can quote scenes from heart, and I usually get the answer to the daily trivia question correct.

But... Oh man, I have to say it. They are definitely on the way downhill. As the quality of the animation and guest stars increase, the quality of the scripts is going down. They are running out of ideas (hardly surprising in what, 15 seasons?!) and I've begun noticing distinct similarities between new animated episodes and older comic-book plots.

For example, the comic-book episode where the town divides into two (lower and upper springfield) over water supply. They build a wall through town and are only reunited by the timely words of Bart. This episode is annoyingly similar to the animated episode featuring The Who, where the town divides into two over a change in area code. They build a wall through town and are only reunited by the timely words of The Who. It's annoying because the similarities mean the episodes get muddled in my mind.

Last night's new episode, where they went to England, almost made me cry. It was so poorly constructed. I mean, compare that to the episode made a few years back, where they visit Australia - brilliant plot, funny yet subtle jokes and send-ups of stereotypes, a "believeable" story. Yet last night's episode felt like "hey, we got Tony Blair to do a guest voice! Someone come up with an episode featuring England, quick!". Mentioning stereotypes just on their own does not count as humour. There has to be a point to make it funny.

Sigh. So now I am mildly depressed. I will keep watching the Simpsons, of course, right to the bitter end. I am a fan to the core, right down to my hand-painted Simpsons jeans and Simpsons-brand replacement liver.

Posted by phreq at March 11, 2004 05:25 AM | TrackBack


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