An Inconsequential Task

The Simpsons is my favorite show. Always has been, and always will; I’ve been infatuated with many different shows over the years, but no series has provided me with more entertainment and laughter than that of our favorite yellow-toned family. Back in middle school, I was a Simpsons maniac. I would quote the show constantly, I would write reviews of new episodes, I would draw characters all over my school notes, write fanfictions for school assignments. It was downright sick. It was beyond a liking, it was some bizarre addiction. I’ve mellowed out on my fandom at this point, but a large portion of my brain is still full of classic scenes, moments and useless Simpsons trivia.

I’d watched the show in syndication for a long while, but I believe the first season I started watching new episodes was season 11, right in the epicenter of the Mike Scully era, synonymous with most fans as the death of their beloved series. Since I was like 13, I recall enjoying most of those episodes; when I grew older and rewatched them I realized how wrong I had been. However once Al Jean took the helm at season 13, there was a bit of a curve up in quality, at least enough for me to keep watching. The years went on and I still held on. The show had reached a sort of middle ground where most episodes were not horrible, but at least entertaining enough to warrant my continued viewership. Plus Sundays at 8 had become wired into my head as Simpsons time, so I kept watching. However, this all came to an end at the beginning of the show’s 21st season. I remember it was the third episode in, “The Great Wife Hope.” The Monday after it aired, I had completely forgotten there was a new episode the night before, so I opened it on Hulu and had it on in the background whilst I was doing some schoolwork. Later in the day, I found I could barely remember anything that had happened in the episode. That’s when it occurred to me, “Why am I still watching this show?” My departure from the series wasn’t brought by a particularly heinous episode, or of the show crossing the line; it was more apathetic than that. The new episodes were of no interest to me; the show had run its course. And with that, I left it, and haven’t seen a new episode since.

An unfortunate result of this decision (maybe not a complete correlation, but true nonetheless) is that I haven’t watched many episodes of the show since then. Being busy with lots of work and watching other different shows has kept me busy, but I always kept it in the back of my mind to revisit the classic episodes, to relive the greatness of the series. Well, seeing as now that I’m a college graduate and have a lot of time on my hands at the moment, this seems like as good a time as ever. I previously did a blog where I reviewed all 49 (now 50) films in the Disney animated canon (which you can find here). This new assignment will make that look like chump change. I’m going to watch every Simpsons episode in order, all the way up until I stopped watching. That’s 444 episodes. At roughly 21 minutes each, that’s 9,324 minutes, or 155 and a half hours.

Now, I’m not a madman. …well, I am, but not that mad. I’m not marathoning through these. Even when I’d do marathon viewings of the newest DVD release, I’d have to split them into two viewings of 11 episodes each. I’ll probably do one or two a day. Each episode will have a posting of my reactions to each episode, personally, in relation to other episodes or the show as a whole, just whatever I can make of the episode, as well as the best quotes. Now this’ll take a long time, and I don’t even know if anyone is going to read this, but it’s no bother to me. All I want is to relive my favorite show of all time, one step at a time. Because at its highest and lowest, these 444 episodes (and 1 movie) are The Simpsons as I see it. So… here we go. Or here I go. Rather. …right.