With 31 seasons, The Simpsons is still showing no signs of slowing down, although we’re a long way removed from the classic era of the series. Of course, over time, there’ve been various ideas about how we might get a resolution to the story, including many different futures, but The Simpsons writers have always had a tongue-in-cheek approach to putting a definitive stop to the show. ScreenRant are now suggesting, though, that we may have already seen hints of the ending, or even an episode that will act as a retrospective coda.
According to the theory, the only way for The Simpsons to truly end is with the death of Homer, something that’s almost happened on multiple occasions. Furthermore, this conclusion might also involve the character going through a redemption of sorts, and a return to the more rounded (mentally, if not physically) version we saw during initial depictions.
In addition, the 2011 Christmas episode “Holidays of Future Passed” was apparently written as a possible finale, wherein we jump forward 30 years to see Bart and Lisa’s families visiting Homer and Marge for the holidays, with Maggie close to giving birth. During the episode, we get a lot of references to what’s happened to Springfield’s citizens over the years, and Homer reconciles with his father.
It’s intriguing to note that “Holidays” could have actually ended The Simpsons on this note way back in 2011, due to financial problems at Fox linked to advertising their long-running hit, a situation that eventually led to pay cuts for the production. It therefore makes sense that this may be the “ending” that the showrunners have in mind, and one they could return to.
As ScreenRant explains:
2011’s Christmas episode ‘Holidays of Future Passed’ was written as a potential series finale, and sure enough the episode features a kind-hearted (if oafish) Homer who is easier to root for. There’s no guarantee that this theory will hold, as The Simpsons remains as inventive as ever, and the show continues to flout expectations for better or worse. But despite the show’s constant drive to remain fresh and original, many of its later installments have lacked the heart which made The Simpsons stand out in its early years. Revealing that Homer has been the show’s eyes, ears, and heart throughout its many years could be just the ending that The Simpsons needs to close on a high.
Of course, there’ve been plenty more episodes since then to complicate this idea, while comments last year by composer Danny Elfman about the program coming to a close were quickly refuted by producer Al Jean.
How do you think The Simpsons will or should wrap up, though? As always, let us know your thoughts in the comments section down below.