Legendary Simpsons producer David Mirkin (he's the guy took over the show in Season 5 and ran it for two of the best years ever) is doing a little interview with the AV Club about his previous show, the cult classic Get A Life starring David Letterman's former ward Chris Elliott, the complete series of which which is finally on DVD. The first part of the interview is up, and it's good reading. I learned way more about Mirkin's past life than from listening to Simpsons commentaries. Like, I didn't know he'd worked with one of the Monty Python guys, and it's insane that he's had full creative control of just about everything he's ever done. Here's some choice quotes about his comic sensibilities...
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For the past few years, Dead Homer Society has been the finest source of Simpsons criticism on the internet, dutifully diagnosing the symptoms of what it affectionately calls "Zombie Simpsons." Well, now the site's frontman Charlie Sweatpants has written a whole mini-book on the subject, Zombie Simpsons: How the Best Show Ever Became the Broadcasting Undead.
In it, he meticulously lays out not only why The Simpsons is so ridiculously bad now but also how it got that way, with charts and footnotes and stuff! The whole treatise will be parceled out chapter by chapter on the website over the next couple weeks, but if you have a Kindle you can get the whole dang thing right now for just three bucks. Do it or else a Zombie Simpson will fly into your kitchen and make a mess of your pots and pans
David Foster Wallace, the celebrated author of the novel Infinite Jest and seminal anti-cruise diatribe "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again," may be dead dead dead in real life, but apparently he's still alive and kickin' it in the Simpsons universe. Here's a framegrab of someone who strongly resembles him in the background of the latest Simpsons episode, cleverly entitled "A Totally Fun Thing That Bart Will Never Do Again," as spotted by No Homers Club poster Real Melvin:
Among the more intriguing ideas lost to the sands of time:
- An aborted "$pringfield" subplot involving Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Sylvester Stallone maintaining a Planet Hollywood in Springfield that got dropped since the three actors never actually agreed to be on the show.
- More scenes of Springfield being hit by an economic recession, which somehow feels more timely and relevant than last year's "No Loan Again, Naturally" despite being written a decade earlier.
- George and Barbara Bush eating pizza.
- An episode plot where Bart obtains 144 Jeeps for some reason.
- This visual gag:
The town secretary records the vote in a ledger, where we see previous idiotic town votes, e.g. "Above-Ground H-Bomb Test," "Lower Drinking Age to 14," and "Build Monorail."
Celebrated Goosebumps author Stephen King churned out a new book, Under the Dome, which features a town encased in a giant dome (possible metaphor???), which The Internet immediately declared to be a rip-off of The Simpsons Movie, which was of course the first movie to feature a dome. King denied these grave charges of plagiarism, claiming to have come up with the plot when he started the story in the 1970s, which pre-dates The Simpsons by a week or two. He further attempted to prove his innocence by scanning the first 60 pages of his manuscript, typed out in their original IBM typescript, which should erase any lingering doubts because faking old typewriter fonts is impossible.
Lest you think The Simpsons Archive, the holy grail of Simpsons nerdery, has been slacking (it is currently seven years behind on its encyclopedic episode capsules), contributor Tim Reardon [?!] has written an incredibly thorough 18,719- word summary, transcript, and review of The Simpsons Ride, including every line in the queue videos, the pictures on the walls, and a list of every character who appears in it. Why pay $50 to go on the ride when you can read this instead? [The Simpsons Archive]
The newly News Corp.-owned Wall Street Journal had Mark I. Pinksy, author of The Gospel According to The Simpsons, review the new Flanders' Book of Faith in a move that's totally synergystic! [Wall Street Journal]