Reading Digest: Theme Park Opening Edition

Selma's Choice10

“Duff Gardens, home of the Whiplash!” – Troy McClure
“To be completed in 1994.” – TV Announcer
“Ahhhhhh!” – Captain Lance Murdock

Last week, the new Simpsons area down at Universal Studios got teased all over the internet.  This week it kinda, sorta opened, which meant that the signal-to-noise ratio for on-line Simpsons news stayed skewed for a second week.  Hence, we have three links about the theme park and a short Reading Digest in general.  We do have plenty of usage, several fan made links, two links to a “best written” list that came out this week, and a Simpsons based book of poetry. 


Video // Robot Chicken’s Simpsons Couch Gag – Four short YouTube videos of behind the scenes stuff from the Robot Chicken couch gag.  Here’s the funny part, from the first video:

Eric Towner [Robot Chicken Director]: The couch gag seemed like a good opportunity.
Seth Green: Apparently the Simpsons have been opening that up to a bunch of different artists and a bunch of different content creators.

It’s just a single word in an off the cuff statement, but I enjoy the fact that Green apparently doesn’t know that the show has been doing all these other couch gags.  He’s a pretty plugged in guy, pop culture wise, but Zombie Simpsons is so irrelevant and invisible these days that he didn’t even notice their desperate ploys for attention by leeching off the popularity of others. 

WKU Prof. Tom Hunley on Workshop Shaming and Telling His Life Through ‘The Simpsons’ – Damn, that sounds like a lot of work:

BS: One of your chapbooks is written in the voices of characters from the TV cartoon The Simpsons. I’d venture that you’re likely the first poet to do this, though many Simpsons fans may have written fan-fiction tales before. The book is both like the show in that your poems describe the characters’ known exploits and reach for an unexpected catharsis, and unlike the show in that the poems brevity and weight most often exceed the emotional capacity usually portrayed. Tell us about the making of “Annoyed Grunt” (Imaginary Friend Press, 2012).

TH:  Those are just the first fourteen poems in a full-length manuscript called The State That Springfield Is In.  So far I have thirty-two of these poems, and the manuscript is fifty-four pages long.

18 Homer Simpson Beer Quotes That Will Never Stop Being Funny – Excellent list, not a drop of Zombie Simpsons.

I Love Money, quote by Steve Martin – Click through for Homer drawn onto a dollar bill.

Avoiding TV spoilers: It’s a thorny old game – Excellent usage (though Homer actually says “thought” not “known that”):

In season three of The Simpsons there’s a flashback scene where Homer and Marge emerge from the cinema having just watched The Empire Strikes Back. “Who’d have known that Darth Vader was Luke Skywalker’s father?” Homer gasps, unaware of a nearby queue of  people waiting to get into the next screening. They’re furious.

Viewers of The Simpsons, however, weren’t so aggrieved by Homer’s spoiler; after all, 11 years had elapsed between the release of The Empire Strikes Back and the airing of that Simpsons episode. By then it wasn’t even a spoiler. Just cultural knowledge. But how long does it take for one to become the other?

These days?  You’ve got about twenty-four hours for a TV show, maybe the opening weekend for a movie.  That’s it, and you’re on your own to avoid Twitter. 

The hits keep on coming: The Sopranos voted best-written TV series of all time – The Writers Guild of America, in one of its periodic ploys for media attention, released a “best written” shows list.  The Simpsons came in at #11, which is insultingly low if they’re not counting Zombie Simpsons and probably way too high if they are.  Either way: meh.

Best Written TV Shows of All Time: Hits and Misses – Here’s some evidence of the kind of damage that Zombie Simpsons has done:

Then there’s the classic comedies. SNL, Seinfeld, Friends, Cheers, etc. but I find myself furious to see the Simpsons on there.

Is the show well written? Maybe, but it’s not South Park.

He’s right.  Even being very weak the last few seasons, South Park is still way better written than Zombie Simpsons.

Moe’s Tavern opening "Moe-ment" with Homer and Marge Simpson at Universal Orlando – This is a truly bizarre video of the fake Moe’s at Universal Studios.  The doors were initially locked, and the people in the Marge and Homer costumes had to stall, which included a kind of fake makeout session, which for some reason they left in the promo video.  Like I said, bizarre.

Universal Simpsons pictures: Photos from "Springfield" attraction at Universal Orlando – And because nothing brings out the media like the maiden voyage of a theme park attraction, here are some photos.

Simpson’s Expansion And Transformers The Ride – And here’s the report from someone who actually went there.  Apparently the “Flaming Moe” costs eight bucks and has no booze.  Fuck that noise.

Yeardley Smith’s Good Taste – Just a little puff piece about Smith and her shoe line.

Badass Women on TV – Marge makes the list, though Lisa, surprisingly, does not.

Best. Episode. Ever. (Round 29) – Season 6 takes out Season 9, which makes sense.  But this . . .

Best. Episode. Ever. (Round 30) – . . . pitting “Marge in Chains” against “Bart After Dark” is just cruel.  Fortunately, you can’t make me pick.

Toy Collection: The Muppets & The Simpsons – It’s not really my cup of tea, but I am a little impressed that they made a toy out of the chimp who came back from space super-intelligent.

Billy Madison…In 10 Words – Aw, tomorrow we were going to find out who the dish ran away with.

Doctor Who Monday: Dr. Who and The Daleks…In 10 Words – Die, bad robots!  Die!

Now You See Me…In 10 Words – Now watch as they make this remainder disappear!

The Donut Sandwich Is Here, So … Are Weight-Loss Costs Tax Deductible? – Excellent usage (perfectly quoted and very apt):

After a quick review of the workplace manual, Homer discovered that if he could gain 61 pounds, he’d qualify as disabled. To help his cause, Homer visited resident weight-gain expert Dr. Nick Riviera, who recommended a slow steady gorging process combined with assal horizontology:

Dr: Nick: You’ll want to focus on the neglected food groups such as the whipped group, the congealed group and the chocotastic!

Homer: What can I do to speed the whole thing up, Doctor?

Dr. Nick:  Be creative.  Instead of making sandwiches with bread, use pop tarts.  Instead of chewing gum, chew bacon…and remember, if you’re not sure about something, rub it against a piece of paper.  If the paper turns clear, it’s your window to weight gain!

If only Homer wanted to fatten up in 2013; things would have been so much simpler. For example, he could have started every day with the newest offering from Dunkin’ Donuts, an egg-and-bacon sandwich that has ingeniously — and deliciously — replaced English muffin or bagel halves with two glazed donuts.

Donuts, is there anything they can’t do?

Crisitunity – A rather intricate fan made drawing that has the “brown and water” quote from “Grade School Confidential”.

Dag 118 – A Moe’s t-shirt.  Heh.

15 Microsoft Paint Drawings – Including the Simpson family and a self admittedly poor Flanders.

You Tell ‘em Lisa – Lisa’s “rich husband” Malibu Stacy rant all contained on a single screen grab.

The Simpsons Handbook – Learning to draw Simpson characters just like the pros, including several examples.  Love the look on Otto’s face.

A Discussion on The Doctor – And finally, I get to end with someone who agrees with us:

Although it will be the end of the greatest series possibly of all time, it would actually be a bittersweet happiness that I’d be able to see the last of Doctor Who. I mean, you don’t want Doctor Who to get The Simpsons Complex. You don’t want the writers and creators to milk this for all it’s worth until we WANT it to end. You want them to end it when we’re still asking for more and know we can’t have it.

”Simpsons Complex”, sounds about right.

2 Responses to “Reading Digest: Theme Park Opening Edition”

  1. 8 June 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Thanks for adding my post to the list. Great blog!

  2. 2 Monty Python Forever
    9 June 2013 at 10:59 pm

    I remember the days when The Simpsons was a top-of-line, up-to-date show filled with hilarious jokes, and South Park was an interesting comedy dragged down by lame jokes and excessive bathroom humor. Now, their positions have reversed, and I miss those days.

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