Search icon


01st Jul 2018

The Simpsons showrunner reveals how he thinks the show should finally end

After 31 years, 29 season, and 639 episodes.

Wil Jones

31 years, 29 season, and 639 episodes

Needless to say, The Simpsons has been running a long, long time. So long, in fact, that many of the shows fans think that it should have ended a long time ago, as recent episodes are nowhere near the golden age of Springfield (Though to be fair, seasons 3 to 8 of The Simpsons are amongst the greatest television ever made, so it is a pretty high standard to live up to).

The thing is, an end to The Simpsons doesn’t look like it is going to happen any time soon. It is now the longest running scripted TV show in history, and since it is a cartoon, it is not like the cast are going to grow out of playing Bart or Lisa. Plus, it still makes Fox a ton of money. In 2008, the twentieth season was put on hold after a pay dispute with the actors, but as for now, there is no end in sight.

But just like how it felt that Arsene Wenger would never leave Arsenal, that day will some. But how do you end a show like this that has become part of the furniture for several generations of kids?

And showrunner Al Jean has gone on record saying what he thinks should happen. Jean was a writer on the show from the very first year, and became showrunner with Mike Reiss for seasons three and four. He left for other projects, but returned to become the solo showrunner in 1998, and has remained in the role ever since.

And his thoughts for how it should end:

He initially tweeted that back in 2014, but repeated his idea again on Sunday.

The first episode proper of The Simpsons – following the shorts on The Tracey Ullman Show – was of course ‘Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire’, a Christmas special. Sop ending with them arriving at the Christmas pageant would indeed make the show an endless loop.

Here’ the opening, if you don’t remember.

Incidentally, season 23’s Christmas episode, ‘Holidays of Future Passed’, which was a flash forward to the future, was originally written as a possible series finale for the show – and is generally regarded as one of the later seasons’ best episodes.