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The Simpsons Folder : Production : Lessons from the S5 DVDs


Thought that it might be useful to have a thread for all of the “facts” gleaned from the DVD’s commentaries, deleted scenes and extras – as opposed to the “reviews” and “opinions” that belong in the Android’s Dungeon forum.

Though we didn’t get the Skinner-toupee scene from “Scoutz”, we learn that Apu wears a hairpiece. He’s actually as bald as Sanjay! (Homer & Apu – deleted scene)

The silent, bald redneck that comes on to Marge & Ruth in “Lam” was modelled on David Mirkin.

The bum that asks Abe & Jasper for change in the opening of “$pringfield”, and is also eating at the Helter Shelter in “Homer Loves Flanders” was modelled on James L. Brooks.

The SVT’s actual first name is “Jeremy”, making it “Jeremy Peterson”. (Badassss deleted) Which makes more sense than “Mitch” from “Selma’s choice, b/c that SVT was off-model. And they’ve utilized “Jeremy” since then, as the name for the pony-tailed tv cameraman-turned-executive (“Today I am a Klown”)

Hutz was made State’s attorney in the Freddy Quimby matter by Joe Quimby, as a way to game the system.

Per Lance Wilder, S5 & 6 were the ones in which Springfield really started to grow out, and take on aspects and landmarks from all over the U.S. (and particularly New England, where Wilder grew up). (Animator’s roundtable discussion extra)

Richard Simmons was supposed to provide the voice of the robotic Richard Simmons – but he withdrew his permission and involvement upon reading his script-section. (And the scene was deleted when it never got a good reaction from the screenings. But Mirkin & Silverman later got a lot of laughs from it when they included it in clips during speaking engagements – so it went in the 138th Spectacular. (Burns’ Heir comments)

Oakly & Weinstein developed Luigi, Leopold & Baby Gerald (named later) all at the same time when they were crunch-writing their episodes “Badassss” & “LB’s Lover”, and included these charactyers in both of them. Luigi is “off-model” from Groening-like charactyers because he came right off the standard pizz-box. (Not that he’s that ‘off-model’!) (Badassss comments)

Mirkin, Oakley & Weinstein all have a great discussion of the way in which Foz publicity mis-advertises the content of episodes, to highlight Bart & Homer’s antics, in the commentary tracks to both Badassss and “Malibu Stacy”. They note that “Badassss” is a character study of Skinner, but that it was used for the 100th ep because it had a lot of Bart in it, and then it was promoted as “Bart’s greatest prank ever!!”, even though it didn’t really involve a prank (and that phrase then became a running joke among the staff,) – and that “Malibu Stacy”‘s promo ad in TV Guide involved Bart looking up MS’s skirt, with the tagline “Springfield gets a sexy new doll!” – and that both of these promo items therefore got the lessons of the episode 100% backwards.

We meet “Peaches” (did I remember the name right? Probably not….), the elderly matriarch of the Quimby family, modelled on Ethel Kennedy – and also StarTrek’s Capt. Pike! (BWKTM deleted)

Great deled Hutz scene from “$pringfield”: When Quimby is soliciting fundraising suggestions, he calls on Hutz, in the first row, who sits next to Hibbert.
LH: (Stands up) “I suggest that we declare bankruptcy, default on our creditors, and hide our assets in an offshore Cayman Islands account!”
JQ:” That sounds unecessarily complicated.”
LH: “Hey, it worked out great for this guy!” (points at Hibbert)
Hibbert: “I think the town would like to hear about your recent nervous breakdown!”
LH: Eep. (Sits down)
(“$pringfield” Animatic)

“Lisa the Vegetarian” apparently came about partially from Mirkin’s own switch to vegetarianism, which I had no idea about.

Mirkin also talked a lot about wanting to flesh out many of the characters, which explains why a lot of side characters (Apu, Skinner, etc) had their own episodes in season five.

Another observation is that they must have touched up some of those deleted scenes when they put them in “138th Episode Spectacular” (the “Bollywood” movie cut from “Homer and Apu” was missing some music and sound effects that must have been added in just for that special).

Grandpa’s flat poses in Cape Feare when he’s talking about Matlock (and corn on the cob) came from a deleted scene, and must have been redubbed later when they decided to cut that spatoon scene. That one little part of the episode always seemed to “stop dead” to me (compared to the rest of the episode which is so fast and funny) and the animation always looked weird too with Grandpa’s “stuck” expressions as he talks. The deleted scene sort of explains why.

Also, the three nerds from Homer Goes to College were based off of three guys who lived on the floor above Conan in college. Although the design of one of them was based off of one of the animators.

On the animatic for THOH 4, the scenes where bart pstered Satan Flanders with an F-1 racer, Lionel hutz and his empty pizza box, and homer’s head used as a bowling ball WERE accurate but weren’t shown as deleted scenes with colour(probably because during the animatic, they cut it out with filling the colours and for “138 episode spectacular”, they filled the scenes wih colour).


Special thanks to RMIII, dtb, radioactive man,

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