Reading Digest: Reluctant (But Pun Free!) Guest Voice Edition


“Damn you, paparazzo!” – C.M. Burns

As a general rule, I tend to ignore Zombie Simpsons guest voice news.  Almost without exception, the guest voices fade instantly into the indistinguishable morass of forgettable episodes, so I don’t see the point in noting them beforehand.  However, and I give her and her publicists a lot credit for this, it’s basically impossible to ignore Lady Gaga.  Earlier this week it came out that she’s doing a guest voice on Zombie Simpsons, then the internet exploded, and as a result we have two links about it.  (And if I have to read one more headline using the word “gaga” as a pun I’m going to start shooting.)  Presumably, we’ll be treated to a similar online conniption when the episode airs next spring, but after that I fully expect this episode to disappear down the memory hole.  After all, this is Zombie Simpsons we’re talking about.  Forgettable and pointless is what they do, and even the white hot fame of Lady Gaga can’t resist their rigidly dull commitment to mediocrity.

Due to the explosion of Gaga background noise there’s a little less variety than usual this week.  But we’ve still got an awesome fan made embroidery project, some excellent usage, a nice takedown of the movie, and lots of people who don’t like Zombie Simpsons. 


Oh Simpsons, when did this happen to you? – A terrible, if necessary, question:

When did The Simpsons become what it is today: the ghost of a much greater show.

Was it the move to HD? Was it after, or before the movie? Is there even a defining moment?

I would really like to know what you (yes, you) have to say about this.

I voted for Season 10, but that may be related to the fact that we’re almost done watching all of them for the summer.

Phat Quarter Food Swap (or how I work the Simpsons into everything I do) – An awesome embroidered butcher’s diagram of a pig with Homer’s famous “wonderful, magical animal” quote.  Ten pounds of bacon to you.

Hot Shot Eastbound – Today’s post on the Springfield Historical Society is about the scene where Homer watches “Hail to the Chimp”.  I did not know that was a famous photograph.  Cool.

Top Moments of ‘The Simpsons’ – This list of great things from the show is gentler on Zombie Simpsons than I am, but all of the moments are from single digit seasons.  Bravo.

Use the Forks, Luke – A high resolution scan of a Simpsons comic this guy drew when he was ten.  The premise is that Homer is stuck in a door.  Honestly, this is better than Zombie Simpsons.

Hello Kitty – A list of some of television’s most famous cats, including Snowball II. 

Lady Gaga set for lesbian kiss in new Simpsons episode – I could’ve picked any one of a dozen links for this less than shocking news, which every write up was sure to mention:

Lady Gaga revealed that her character ends up kissing Marge.

Oh, Zombie Simpsons, you do love trite, faux-lesbian exploitation, don’t you?

Lisa Goes GaGa for Guest Star Lady Gaga on ‘The Simpsons’ – And the second and final Lady Gaga link is for this:

Simpsons executive producer Al Jean said that it was the first time the show has had a “show business legend” younger than the series itself.

C’mon, Al, that isn’t even kinda true.  Wikipedia has her as being born in 1986, she isn’t even younger than the Tracey Ullman shorts.  To be fair to Jean, I didn’t actually see him quoted at the link, and perezhilton.com is about as reliable a source of information as an astrology fortune cookie.  It does sound like something he’d say, though.

Best Animated TV Comedy Of All Time – Your Vote – I saw that the water wing and rubber pants crowd at Entertainment Weekly was holding a stupid vote on this.  Happily I can link to our friends at Stay Tooned In instead.  Oh, and The Simpsons came in first, naturally.

The East Coast Earthquake…In 10 Words – Pretty lame, earthquake. 

Chicago-Style Hot Dogs…In 10 Words – A dead on Apu quote for the tooltip here. 

Branson, Missouri…In 10 Words – Sadly, the tooltip quote here is a bit off and nits must be picked.  Bart actually says, “My dad says it’s like Vegas, if it were run by Ned Flanders.”

Can You Imagine a World Without Lawyers? – YouTube of Hutz’s worst nightmare.  I never get sick of that.

Worst TV to Film Adaptations: Friday Fiver – No arguments here:

The Simpsons Movie (2007)
Alright, so this film adaptation of Fox’s long-running animated comedy wasn’t exactly a massive drop in quality from what we’re currently getting on television – The Simpsons has been declining steadily for at least ten years – but that’s not really an excuse. Fans had been waiting for a big screen outing from Springfield’s first family for years, and what they did they eventually get? About two decent jokes, both of which were in the trailer.

Is oil from Alberta really climate’s linchpin? – Excellent usage:

There’s an old episode of "The Simpsons" in which Bart pleads with his father to cease his verbal abuse of the local baseball team, the Springfield Isotopes. “You’ve got to support the team, Dad,” Bart insists. “They’re already threatening to move to Moose Jaw!” I felt a little tummy-tickling thrill when I first saw that episode, because as brief a mention as it was, the little Canadian prairie city where I was born had just been referenced on "The Simpsons"! It was like having my picture taken with a favorite celebrity or something.

This isn’t reality – Animated .gif of Homer melting out of, then back into, the hedge from “Homer Loves Flanders”.

Random Look – Weeks Photos – Someone bought one of those Homer skateboards and took a close up picture of it.  Also, I too enjoy drinking on patios. 

The TV Talk’s Shows I Can’t Get Into – And finally, won’t somebody please think of the children?:

“The Simpsons” – Slightly different situation from “Supernatural,” I feel as if I missed the prime years of “The Simpsons.” A few years ago, I decided that if I liked “Family Guy,” the rest of the Animation Domination Sunday Line-Up could be for me. I watched nearly an entire season of “The Simpsons” before I realized it didn’t do anything for me. It wasn’t necessarily bad or anything, but it also didn’t really make me laugh or make me feel something in a way that “Family Guy” can.  And while the merits of both shows can be debated, it seems “Simpsons” fans pretty much agree that the show isn’t what it used to be. The social satire of older seasons wouldn’t have the same bite now, so it seems like a lost cause.

A very lost cause.

9 Responses to “Reading Digest: Reluctant (But Pun Free!) Guest Voice Edition”

  1. 1 Chris
    26 August 2011 at 1:46 pm

    You know, if they spent half as much time writing a decent script as they did searching for stupid flash-in-the-pan guest stars, they might have a decent show.

    Remember the Oakley & Weinstein years when the guest stars were old actors like Donald Sutherland, Kirk Douglas and Lawrence Tierney? They truly cared about the quality of the show. To them, it wasn’t about getting the hottest stars, but finding the right voices for the right characters. They’d probably get fired nowadays for having such an attitude. Lady Gaga provides nothing of value to the show, just as Kirsten Schall didn’t, just as Fantasia didn’t, just as every guest star they’ve had in the last ten years hasn’t.

    What an absolute freaking embarrassment. They make it harder and harder every day for me to admit that I was ever a Simpsons fan. Al Jean, you were great at one time. Season 3 is, in my opinion, the greatest season in the history of television. But you sold your soul for this horrid show.

  2. 2 ecco6t9
    26 August 2011 at 3:40 pm

    It’s sad to see that most of these guest stars just don’t say “No”.

  3. 3 Wrinkledlion X
    26 August 2011 at 5:49 pm

    Oi, that last link is painful. Not even willing to check out classic Simpsons because he thinks the satire must be dated.

  4. 27 August 2011 at 12:03 am

    If appealing to modern, shitty trends had a dick, Al Jean and his team of “writers” would be a bunch of flaming faggots.

  5. 5 fudge
    27 August 2011 at 12:44 am

    The only thing Lady Gaga has going for her is her nice tight ass. Which is funny to me, because the only thing Zombie Simpsons knows how to do is suck ass.

  6. 6 Thrillho
    27 August 2011 at 1:44 am

    An episode with Lady Gaga is just dying to have a Compare and Contrast with Stark Raving Dad after it airs. I predict Lady Gaga will just play herself and won’t have nearly as much lines as Michael Jackson did. Also, nobody will remember the episode after it airs, quite unlike Stark Raving Dad.

    And though I don’t think The Simpsons Movie was perfect, putting it alongside the Scooby Doo and Thunderbirds movies as “the worst TV to film adaptations” seems a bit much. I can think of MUCH worse movies in that category, but it’s their opinion, not mine.

    • 7 Chris
      27 August 2011 at 1:13 pm

      “And though I don’t think The Simpsons Movie was perfect, putting it alongside the Scooby Doo and Thunderbirds movies as “the worst TV to film adaptations” seems a bit much. I can think of MUCH worse movies in that category, but it’s their opinion, not mine.”

      Off the top of my head, Beverly Hillbillies, the Avengers, Dukes of Hazzard, the Flintstones. Actually, in the grand scheme of things, the Simpsons Movie is probably among the best TV-to-movie adaptations, in that most of them are really terrible.

    • 8 Wrinkledlion X
      27 August 2011 at 1:40 pm

      Yeah, I didn’t think the Simpsons movie was awful. It wasn’t great, but you could tell they at least made some effort not to be completely apathetic. Unlike virtually every Zombie Simpsons episode, it had its memorable points.

    • 9 fudge
      29 August 2011 at 7:28 pm

      I think the first, oh, 30 minutes or so of THE SIMPSONS MOVIE is a LOOOOOOT better than just about every ZS episode. The next hour, though, and especially that last 3rd? PURE zombie..

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