Saturday, November 21, 2015

"The Simpsons" Missed Opportunities

Apparently “The Simpsons”, one of the most iconic bits of American culture ever produced will finally end (maybe) after its 30th season.  This will make it one of the longest running shows ever in the same league as “Doctor Who” and “Guiding Light”.  I feel that its end is a good thing.  While the show is iconic it did not evolve nearly as much as it should have, and I feel that one of the best episodes of the series in one that explored how the show could have allowed the characters to grow up, “Lisa’ Wedding”.

Unlike other series this one still had more stories to tell after a wedding episode.
I generally think that the show had a lot of creative people on staff and created such an expansive cast of characters that there is a host of missed opportunities they could have explored and didn’t.  They even made a whole show joking about how they did not take advantage of that stable of characters, that was “The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase”, and a make-shift could-have-been-a-pilot, “22 Short Films About Springfield” two more episodes I consider among the series’ best work.
The reason I wrote this blog is I wanted to point to what I consider the biggest missed opportunity for a spin off from “The Simpsons”: Hank Scorpio and the Globex Corporation, from “You Only Move Twice”.

My favorite single appearance character in the series, and maybe my favorite character overall.
Voiced by the great actor, Albert Brooks.
It is my favorite episode of "The Simpsons", and the fact that Hank never returned to the series is a crying shame.  A series starring this character, a comedy spy series (a concept that has existed for decades) but told from the position of a villain.
Each season could be another giant scheme in a new base of operations and the logistics and mishaps that comes with running them. Volcano Island, Ice Castle, Undersea lab, Oil Rig, ancient city like El Dorado, and a Moon Base. You could have parodies of the Avengers (the British ones), Get Smart, the Manchurian Candidate, and the Prisoner (something “The Simpsons” did with the episode, “The Computer Wore Menace Shoes”)

If you do not know what this is, relax.  Nobody who watched the show was entirely sure what it was about either.
Hell, you could have parodies of every James Bond, sure we see the classic Sean Connery version get murdered, but what about Roger Moore?  You could also have Scorpio take down rival bad guys, like Rattle Snake (instead of Cobra), Phantom (instead of SPECTRE), Micro (instead of Quantum), and Chimera (instead of Hydra).
Have him golf with 3rd world dictators who are seen as absentminded puppets of the CIA and take stories from their real life eccentricities to develop them. The show could have actually raised people's general awareness of real life evil dictators.  I know who Omar Al-Bashir is, but having him played for comedy would let the various Cletus citizens of our country know too.
Now I feel sad and let down with the world.  Not merely because this show never got to exist, but of how many could have and didn’t, of how “The Simpsons” could have been the starting point of lots of shows like “All in the Family” had been decades prior.  Sure it still had a major impact, but it could have had more, it could have evolved and grown, and the fact that it didn’t is sad, it was kept frozen in time and now 30 years after it debuted it will end and that will be it.
If you like or hate this please take the time to comment, +1, share on Twitter or Facebook, and otherwise distribute my opinion to the world.  I would appreciate it.

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