The Simpsons was one of the greatest animated sitcoms of all time but now it’s that show people question why it’s still on the air. I was a huge fan of The Simpsons when I was a kid. I remember watching reruns of it every week & I owned all the box sets & watched them constantly. After a while I moved onto other shows like most people and the show just went on without us.
Notice: So for a while I’ve been thinking of doing an in-depth look at each season to see how it began then to see the show at its peak then to where we are today. This will be a monthly series on each season & these reviews should come out at the beginning of each month but don’t expect me to stick exactly to this schedule. Also I won’t be doing all 29 seasons (As of 2018 that’s where we are up to) I’ll probably go to Season 12 to 14 maybe unless you people enjoy this enough for me to keep going.
The Golden Age of Everything commonly known as the 80’s: Back in the day The Simpsons first appeared on a show called The Tracy Ullman show. I don’t anything about it but it’s famous for airing the shorts of The Simpsons. I thought I should mention the show because that’s a part of The Simpsons history. All these shorts are on YouTube & they’re all about a couple of minutes long & they all sucked. None of them are good but it’s interesting to see where they’ve came from & I would best describe as stepping stone for the series just like this First Season.
Eventually Matt Groening, James L. Brooks & Sam Simon made their own show it was originally meant to air back in autumn of 1989 with’ Some Enchanted Evening’ but the animation was so awful they almost gave up on the show entirely. But they didn’t when ‘Bart The Genius’ was just passable. Eventually they moved back to December & started with the Christmas episode ‘Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire’ which was okay. For a first episode it isn’t that bad & for a Christmas Episode it’s pretty formulaic & cheesy. The most significant thing that happens is they get Santa’s Little Helper everything else isn’t very funny, the animation looks bad, very bad dubbing & the backgrounds look very ugly. (Especially in these earlier episodes) All in all it’s as great as the shorts.
The Characters 0.0: Before I go into the rest of the season I think I should talk about the early versions of these beloved characters starting with The Simpsons themselves. Homer has a mixture of being an idiot, a self-centred jerk & a compassionate person who really cares for his family. The earlier episodes have his compassionate side as his main side & his idiot side was on the side. As the season went along his Jerk & Idiot side took over with the compassionate side coming out when needed. I wouldn’t say we have The Homer we all know & love yet but we’re pretty close.
Bart is basically the same as he is now. Marge is just a nag & that gets really old after a while we do see a bit of her more loving side as the season goes along. Lisa is smart. That’s it. The first season mostly had Homer & Bart take most of the attention for season. Homer had 6 episodes that focused on him and 6 episodes where he got a fair amount of attention. Bart had 5 episodes that focused on him and 5 episodes where he got a fair amount of attention. While Lisa & Marge had 1 episode that focused on them & they get a few episodes where they’ve a bit of attention. Not that’s a problem it’s something I thought should be pointed out.
The Other Characters are kind of just there. The only character who gets a good amount of screen time like a main character would is Krusty. The other side characters who gets some attention this season is Mr. Burns & Moe who I singly pointed out because they’re voiced by the guy who voiced Cobra Commander in G.I Joe & it’s only for this season. The only other characters that get their chance in the spotlight are Patty & Selma, Reverend Lovejoy, Principal Skinner & Dr. Marvin Monroe. (Does Anyone Remember him)
The Other 12 Episodes: The 2nd episode is ‘Bart The Genius’ which is meh. On the bright side it has the first appearance of Martin & Mrs. Krabappel. It’s also very ugly to look at. After that is two Homer focused episodes ‘Homer’s Odyssey’ & ‘There’s No Disgrace Like Home’. The first one is another average episode where the only highlight of the episode is that Smithers is black. I’m not kidding look it up. The one after I think should’ve been the first episode of the series. Since it’s the one that shows what type of show you’re watching. It’s about Homer wanting his family to not be themselves basically & be like other boring family from the 80’s. It’s a pretty cool episode not the best but better than the other three.
‘Bart The General’ is where I think things start to pick up for the animation. Compared to the last 4 episodes it has improved the design & the backgrounds are much better. It’s also the first parody episode because Bart is getting picked on by Nelson so Bart & Grandpa Simpson (Who’s the best character in this entire season) & they parody Patton. (I haven’t seen the movie but I got my Simpsons guide book just so I understand this moment) I would say it’s the first funny episode of the show. Then they drop the ball with the next 3 episodes especially with ‘The Telltale Head’. Bart cuts the head of the town founder’s stature to impress some guys. Everyone freaks out Bart feels guilty. Homer & Bart get chased by a mob then Bart explains the episode, the end they don’t die, happy ending. My main problem is the characters going out of character especially Bart. Since when did Bart care about history?
Then we have the Emmy winning episode ‘Life On The Fast Lane’ where Homer forgets Marge’s birthday & he buys her a bowling ball that he knows she won’t use. Marge decides to use it & she meets the creepiest bowler I’ve seen Jacques voiced by Albert Brooks. They form a relationship which I don’t buy, but only if I accept that Marge likes him because he’s not Homer & Jacques likes her because he wants to do more with her besides bowling. What I do like is without many words it shows Marge & Homer slowly drifting apart. But did we have to have this pointless subplot with Lisa just telling us what’s going. This first season does this constantly & it really gets on my nerves. It does have a great ending & this episode might be the best of the season.
The last five episodes drift down into the meh region. ‘Homer’s Night Out’ has Bart taking a photo of Homer dancing with an exotic dancer at a bachelor’s party & this photo becomes the town gossip. Marge gets mad & wants Homer to show Bart that women shouldn’t be treated like objects. Marge, It’s a bachelor’s party & she was getting paid to be ogled at, calm down. Next is ‘The Crepes of Wrath’ an episode where Bart is send to France to work in slavery by some French winemakers who want to poison their customers with antifreeze for some unknown reason all because Bart put a cherry bomb in the bathroom while Skinner’s mum. A little bit extreme don’t you think Skinner.
After that is ‘Krusty Gets Busted’ Krusty is framed for armed robbery & only two 10 year olds could figure out that the guy with kangaroo feet who also hates this guy was the one behind all of this. Makes sense. Lastly it’s the original pilot episode where it isn’t that hard to pick out the original scenes with from the ones that were redone. Bottom line It’s as great as the actual pilot episode.
Conclusion: Season 1 of The Simpsons is a stepping stone for the series. It’s an experiment that is still in the testing room. You can even see it with the opening credits how some of these shots are used in later seasons. With the opening music, the chalkboard gag & even the couch gag that has two episodes where The Simpsons actually sit on the couch & that’s the gag. I’m not kidding. The first season can be a mix bag & I would only recommend it to die-hard fans of the show.
How I will end each review is have my ranking of the episodes & have my rating at the end of the review. So if you agree or disagree please let me know in the comments. If you can share it with your loved ones that would be great and if you haven’t notice I’m a huge fan of movies & TV Shows and I’m willing to suffer for my audience so let me know on what I should review next.
If you want to me to continue this series or have other series you think I should do similar to this then please let me know.
Thanks for reading this review and I’ll see you again in the next review.
13. Bart The Genius
12. The Telltale Head
11. Homer’s Night Out
10. Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire
9. Some Enchanted Evening
8. Homer’s Odyssey
7. The Crepes Of Wrath
6. Krusty Gets Busted
5. Moaning Lisa
4. The Call of The Simpsons
3. There’s No Disgrace Like Home
2. Bart The General
1. Life On The Fast Lane
Season Rating: 5/10