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Fan Interview: Matty Jorissen

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Fan Interview: Matty Jorissen

This document is done

Could you tell us something about yourself, where you live and how old are you?

The name’s Matty Jorissen, dutchie. Meaning I’m from Holland. I’ll be 19 on the 26th of this month, but I don’t know when the hell you are gonna publish this interview, Jukka. Anywho, currently I study Graphic Design at art school. I’m in the 3rd year, meaning I have to be a trainee at an advertisement company for quite some time. Got many hobbies, like animating, cartooning, reading, drinking, watch movies & tv and the Simpsons of course… you can go on a little longer, but these are the main ones. I love creating things, and bringing them to life even more. Currently, I’m working on a 60 minutes animated movie with a friend.

Any disgusting personal habits?

Well, I tend to chat with Finnish people, but besides that nothing.

You are man behind The Simpsons Halloween Special Site. Who/what inspired you to create it?

First of all, the Simpsons tv show of course. Back in 1999 I got an internet connection of my own at home, and of course began browsing trough what the net had to offer about the Simpsons. I noticed how there was no real website about the Simpsons Halloween Special; only a site disguised as one which was actually a gallery of art images. I also downloaded Flash at the time (I was already interested in animating, and had various animation programs from Twilight CDs, but they all sucked). My first animation was one of Homer. He was relaxing on the ocean on one of those blow-up things, with a Duff Beer in his hand, when suddenly a shark rose up from the water and pulled him down. It had the Jaws theme and all, it was great I tells ya. Wish I still had it 🙁 It ended with his blood in the water forming the words The Simpsons Halloween Special Site. I made several other animations, not Simpsons related, after that, but quickly picked the idea for a Simpsons Halloween site up again. I started playing in html, gave it up quickly after the Farm (you know which site it is, wink wink) opened and made it flash again, as it seemed so creative, interactive and original. I created the menu still on the site today. I created several sections, uploaded lots of episode downloads etc. and for the opening made a new intro, this time directly inspired by the classic Halloween Special intros. I opened it in the last week of December 1999, and officially opened it at a address a few months later. I guess I just wanted to make a great website like none other.It’s fully done in Flash.

Do you think flash opens more doors than just plain html and graphics program?

Definetaly. It makes the website a lot more alive. The main problem is, it’s too hard to create good websites in for most people, and it’s not really convenient for the surfer if your website supports loads of info. Which makes it even harder to design. Never just use flash, for the eyecandy, if it gets in the way. I reckon a nice combination between the threesome in your question is the best (edit: just look at your current design, Jooks).

What other programs do you mainly use and why?

Photoshop – It’s just the best graphics program around, and without such a program you’re nothing! Notepad + – I’ve always done HTML the notepad way. I use dreamweaver MX now for image mapping, though. QuarkXPress – Best way to construct ‘original’ content, like a video cover, and then export it as PDF WinAmp – Music makes the work go easier and gives inspiration.

You have recently opened new general simp-site at Is there lot’s of time in your hands or what drew you to create it?

I wish there was lot’s of time in my hands, but it’s quite the other way around. But I love this goddamn show so much, I felt like expressing it. With the Halloween Special Site, I found myself limited because it has one subject, and I noticed how much the content had gotten non-halloween. It’s also hard to manage it with the flash design and all. The internet was also beginning to feel emptier when last summer a lot great, general sites just dissapeared, so I saw it as the time to come forward with a lot of great, fresh content the casual fan needs. Chris wanted to do a general english site, so we decided to join up. But, like the past month, if we have too much time to spend on our lives, we just can’t update the site, how much we’d love to.

What do you think about today’s Simpsons sites on the net?

They seem so uninspired… They come with 13 in a dozen. All the same stuff, it’s like nobody’s trying anymore. I miss that. Years ago, you could visit every site in the top 100 and they were all unique and had new things to offer. Nowadays, they’re almost all the same. Every now and then something special comes up.

What is the worst Simpsons site you have visited?

That’s too easy, we all know which sites are the worst. When I have to pick a ‘normal’ Simpsons site, I didn’t like Jeff Walker’s last way of working. It seemes he was just making it for a few members of the community, with referencing to it all the time and making crappy animation featuring jokes about Ludvigsen and stuff like that. I also dislike that site that offers nothing but grabpics, the name escapes me now. But I find it to be really boring.

Are there any Simpsons websites with an attractive design and layout in your opinion?

Of course! This past year I noticed how, especially foreign sites, started to design their sites in a themed way so it fits the name. Springfield Paradise and Ned’s Place are just a few. Others are just plain beautyful or original, like Little Miss Springfield or New Springfield. And I gotta hand it to you, you know how to use your share of creativity as well.

What are design styles you love and hate?

I hate mindless put together designs, which seem to be more of a standard than the cloud background these days. They are constructed like this: pick a color, make a header with a white cartoony font, slap a few grabpics in the header, make a navigation with lot’s of useless & boring sections in the Other category, give each category a header with a simpsons character above it, etcetera. You know the deal.

What I love in a design is first of all a theme. Make it fit with the title, or think up the title after you designed even. I also want to see something new and original, something that makes me go “wish I had thought of that”. Interactivity is always a plus, too. Last of all, I want it to be colorful without hurting my eyes, and without fonts that look too out of place.

What is your favorite episode on The Simpsons and why?

Homer’s Enemy. I think this is the Simpsons episode that has everything I ever loved about the show. Hilarity all troughout, dark humor, a classic Homer, a fantastic one time character, a simple yet effective story turned into a great plot, even a little bit of sadness. I love it. Others in my top 10 are Rosebud, Homie the Clown, THOH4, Deep Space Homer, Cape Feare, Who Shot Mr. Burns 1, THOH 5, Mr. Plow, Whacking Day. As you may see, I prefer a great plot plus great humor over and emotional episode. A little of it is great, but I dislike when it’s too overwhelming without really making an impact (I don’t like Lisa’s Substitute, which is a rare case it seems).

If you could change the Simpsons community – what would you do?

I’d put some more creativity in it. I think there’s some need of it.

How do you see future of The Simpsons?

Season 11 and especially 12 made me feel less and less enthusiastic for new episodes, but season 13 fixed that. Season 14 started really slow, but it’s picking up and going great now. I still love it a lot, and it’s on it’s way to be as good as season 9 and I hope even better in the future. I’m not a person who has set season 15 or 16 as a time to call it quits; I’d like to see it go on for decades to come. It’s still entertaining me a great deal. Though I must admit I’d choose for Futurama to come back and the Simpsons to retire if I had to.

What kind of computer system do you use?

Pentium III 600mhz, 256+64MB RAM, 70 gig hd, Windows 98, 17″Monitor, cable internet connection. It still works, so I ain’t complaining.

Any final comments?

I hope 2003 will be a great year for the Simpsons for everyone, showwise and webwise. May death come quickly to your enemies!