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Darkest. Simpsons. Opening. EVER.

The Simpsons has always been self-deprecating and Fox-bashing, but DAYYYYYYYY-UM! Remember the ep where Kent Brockman says that Fox purposely airs programming that will get fined by the FCC so the money can be funneled into the Republican Party? This goes beyond that. I mean, calling out itself and Fox for Korean sweat-shopping? Shredding kittens to stuff Bart dolls? Forcing a unicorn to punch holes in DVDs?* I was thoroughly impressed that it got made and that they were able to slide it past Standards & Practices. According to BBC News, the sequence was created by UK graffiti artist Banksy, whose work I particularly enjoy.

So, for all of you folks who’ve been saying “Maaaan, the Simpsons USED to be subversive! I wish it was like that now.” Well, you got your wish. A LOT.

I, for one, applaud their big yellow balls.

*actually, the unicorn thing made me giggle. i know i’m supposed to be all sad and thought-provoked, but it was a genius gag! i’m a sick asshole, i s’pose…
UPDATE: Fox pulled the youtube clip for copyright infringement, and probably also, “this makes us look like tools” infringement. Here’s another one. Let’s see how long this one survives!


  1. Richard says:

    Actually the person who made this is a guy that goes by the name Banksy. Banksy is culture jammer that works out of the UK. It is clear that this is his work because not only is his name written on the exterior walls of the elementary schools but also because he is a graffiti artist that does in fact “write on the walls.”

  2. Dr Jackson says:

    I can only imagine what the animators must of been thinking while they were drawing this.

  3. Selene says:

    Wow. Chris you bring up very good points. Thanks for setting us all straight. =]

  4. sammybakes says:

    well said, Chris

  5. Chris Hardwick says:

    unmuse, showing kittens going through a shredder to stuff Bart dolls is incredibly dark by network television standards (admittedly, not by cable standards, but that’s not the issue here). have you ever sat in a meeting with s&p and tried to argue what stuff to let on the air? because i have. and if this weren’t the Simpsons it NEVER would have gone through. i’m correctly calling this spade because this is the industry that i work in and falls in line with the many years of experience that i have.

    just out of curiosity what do you do in life that qualifies you to make your claim? if it’s not “writer” “producer” or “standards & practices” you may be out of your depth here.

    …though, i would love to hear you explain of why you think this is “pseudo-ironic”. I find that to be a pseudo-term. “pseudo” means “false” and ironic denotes something that is contrary to the literal meaning. So how is a disembodied dolphin head being used to adhere boxes falsely contrary to the literal experience here?

    Now, I appreciate your brainy nature and this is surely a preferable kind of discourse on a comment thread but I just think you may not know what you’re talking about in this particular situation. I still think you’re nice, though! :)

  6. unmuse says:

    That’s not dark.

    I don’t understand how why people consider normal, pseudo-ironic comedy dark. It’s all around us. All of the time. It’s just playing to the newest majority sub-genre like it always has. Now, that doesn’t mean I don’t like the Simpsons (or Groening or Banksy) any less. Let’s just call a spade a spade and not pretend this is something a) revolutionary or b) genius.

  7. harro says:

    Video available from Banksy’s youtube channel:

  8. Danielle says:

    I thought it was funny. Especially the skinning the little animals for the Bart doll stuffings. It’s over done. That’s why I thought it was funny.
    Or maybe I’m a sick puppy.

  9. Bookman says:

    I saw this the other day and laughed through the intire clip. Awesome

  10. Scrufy 1 says:

    @ Scruffy you stole my name =[

    Banksy is the shit. Nuf said. Toys can argue about his work but that just means ur a toy and hes a king cuz u know his name and he could poop on urs. get over it.

    This was the best simpsons opener ive ever watched, i think (so damn many >.<)

  11. luke says:

    was this possibly an attempt by fox to stir up controversy? controversy leads to publicity, and any publicity is good publicity. also the simpsons has been getting overshadowed by family guy and south park the last few years..

  12. PandorasLunchbox says:

    I love that The Simpsons and Rainn Wilson seem to be the most divisive stuff of late on this site. Nerds…you so crazay.

  13. Banksy says:

    You r-tards, i did it without any permission from the simpsons… an urban guerilla for crying out loud……

  14. Jon says:

    I’m pretty sure Banksy could defecate on a paper plate and have all of you think it’s utter genius.

    I guess I’m just not that much of a fan of contemporary artists, by and large.

  15. Critter says:

    Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve been able to watch the Simpsons, blink, and then laugh my ass off. That is for the win. Banksy is also for the win. All around? Awesome! I got to say, “Suck it Fox”, while I got a little of my Simpsons back!

  16. kfizz says:

    Trust me there was some pretty dark stuff in early tree house of horrors openings.

  17. Deltus says:

    That was some pretty dark stuff, and kudos to the Simpsons’ makers for that.

  18. s says:

    I’m pretty sure it was China being potrayed not Korea. There are no pandas in China.

  19. Peter Herz says:

    I didn’t find it dark, just ironic that an underground artist sold out in such a mainstream way while trying to cling to ‘dark’ imagery and everyone here swallowed it up. Banksy’s art is all around my neighborhood and LA where I live and never once did it make me laugh or think wow thats a dark sardonic image! WOW. Long live the Simpsons who never needed to pretend shit to succeed. I would say Shepard Ferry and Banksy would make a cute, ‘elite’ artist couple.. since their stuff is uncompromisingly conflicted with itself.