Comedy The Simpsons

Discussion in 'Western Animation' started by Osiris, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. Osiris

    Osiris New Member

    May 31, 2020
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    I'm currently catching up with three '90s TV shows, The Simpsons is one of them. Currently, I'm in the midst of finishing season 4. I had something lengthy to say about the movie, but couldn't find a good thread to post it in, so I decided to create my own, if that's okay. I figured this would be a good thread for me to post about various Simpsons clips I find funny too, and there certainly were plenty during the early seasons of the series.

    But today, I would like to talk about a less polished side of the series: the movie.

    Looking back now, The Simpsons Movie arrived at a time when the TV series was long past its prime, and in spite of me giving it a four star rating last time I saw it, it always felt to me back then like another hollow Hollywood movie profiting off the fandom of its TV series (like "Recess: School's Out" or "The X-Files: Fight the Future", both of which pale in comparison to the quality of their TV counterparts). And this sentiment towards the film was all before I even started watching The Simpsons at all starting three months ago.

    But again, looking back now, at what the TV series has become, and rewatching some of the clips from the movie, I think I have a much better appreciation now for what the movie represented, especially now when I'm getting to know about the beloved fictional family for the first time. In spite of some superfluous jokes that fall flat and some celebrity cameos that just didn't really work out, I realized that there were quite a few resolutions to character arcs in the movie, such as Homer's rocky relationship with his son (with Homer almost reaching an actual epiphany about the way he treated Bart being a reflection of how his own father treated him) or just Marge finally putting her foot down and just being plain exhausted by her marriage with Homer with (often) one-sided benefits. These plot-threads were tied up quite nicely in the film in such a way that the film could have pretty much serve as a series finale and it wouldn't be a shame, considering how much worse other series finales turned out (Dexter and even Sherlock come to mind).

    In particular, I found myself tearing up rewatching the video tape Marge left for Homer after leaving him behind, taking the kids with her. Man, that was a great tearjerking scene that fits right in the world of The Simpsons with its focus on family values:

    "Lately, what's keeping us together is my ability to overlook everything you do. And I overlook these things because... Well, that's the thing. I just don't know how to finish that sentence anymore."

    I think the way Marge said "I love you" on the tape at their wedding made it harder to watch because it showed the utter lack of appreciation Homer had for Marge over so many decades.

    Looking back, when contemplating what stood out for me about The Simpsons compared to other adult cartoons like South Park and Family Guy was really the heartwarming moments like this that separates the crude from the thoughtful, and it's easy to see why the series has gone on for as long as it has and being one of the most popular series in the world (I'm not from America and it's still popular here), for better or worse.

    Looking forward at the newer seasons, in spite of their uglier sides, I also noticed that there were quite a few standout episodes that still managed to preserve the kind of trademark family warmth that defined the series, such as "Barthood" and "Holidays of Future Passed", both of were set in the future and reflected on the growth of The Simpsons as a family, particularly Bart and Lisa. So I think there's still some magic to be found, a diamond in the rough.

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