TV critic extraordinaire David Bianculli calls it “a great show, a great idea and a TV viewing event of unprecedented scale.”
He is referring to the unprecedented 12-day (and 12-night) TV marathon that started this morning on FXX. “[H]ere’s your chance to see all 552 episodes of [‘The Simpsons’] in the longest single-series marathon in TV history,” reports NPR.
Bianculli also tells NPR, “There’s something about the sense of watching at the same time as other people that makes it special. That certainly goes for a marathon — and that’s why I predict this 25-season Simpsons marathon will indeed steer people towards FXX.”
On his own website, TV Worth Watching — which TVWeek urges you to check out regularly — Bianculli calls the marathon a “ ‘Simpsons’ miracle. Starting at 10 a.m. ET [this morning, Aug. 21, 2014], the gang’s all here — every single installment of ‘The Simpsons’ series, beginning with the 1989 Christmas special and moving on from there.”
Adds the NPR story, “ ‘The Simpsons’ sparked a renaissance in TV animation that led to ‘South Park’ and ‘Family Guy.’ One writer, Conan O’Brien, found fame as a talk show host. Celebrities providing guest voices on ‘The Simpsons’ included most major movie stars — and Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. Its ‘Treehouse of Horror’ Halloween specials have become one of TV’s most inventive annual traditions.
“And along the way, year after year, ‘The Simpsons’ has served up occasional flashes of comic genius, according to TV critic David Bianculli. There was the Season 4 episode that presents a Springfield community-theater musical production of ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ — and the Season 2 episode that has Marge Simpson, voiced by Julie Kavner, so upset about the violence in the ‘Itchy & Scratchy’ cat-and-mouse TV cartoons her kids watch that she goes on TV herself, on a ‘Nightline’-type talk show, in protest.”
We urge you to read and/or listen to the entire NPR report, which also has some other terrific interviews. You can find it here.