In The Simpsons universe, there are 125 recurring characters (not including celebrity appearances). Out of these 125, we can’t help but think that there are some characters who could pull off some pretty good spin-off shows themselves. So we’ve taken the liberty of putting together this list, along with writing a potential plot to try and give it some legs.
Since 17 December 1989, The Simpsons have kept us laughing and entertained. Now, even in their 32nd series, we all turn a blind eye to the fact Bart, Lisa and Maggie should be in their 30’s/40s. And that they would probably own Snowball #15 by now and just enjoy the storylines and characters.
Could our ideas be in the running to beat The Simpsons as the longest-running scripted series in U.S history?
1. Bart Simpson – The BMX Years
Now, we didn’t really want to take a character from the actual Simpsons family to start this list for a spin-off. But after thinking about it, there is one member that could have a pretty good series all on their own… Don’t have a cow, man.
Throughout the years, we have had several glimpses of grown-up Bart: from as early as season 6, with Lisa’s wedding, to season 11’s Bart To The Future and season 27’s Bart Hood, among others. How cool would it be to have a whole show dedicated to Bart in his 20s? I’m sure he would still be up to his usual tricks.
By his mid-20s, following the storyline from ‘Bart Hood’, Bart has his own BMX bike shop, which he lives above. Naturally, Milhouse has also moved in with him. After Nelson dares Bart to attempt an almost impossible BMX jump, he manages to land it and decides to take up professional BMX stunting again. Bart, along with Milhouse – who calls himself his manager – take off to join the competition world. Each episode is set in a different city around the world as they explore and get up to no good.
2. Comic Book Guy – Best. Superhero. Ever.
From his first-ever appearance in season 2’s “Three Men and a Comic Book”, Jeffrey Albertson, better known as Comic Book Guy, has given us deadpan line, after deadpan line.
He is now a regular in the show, appearing in over a hundred episodes, plus Simpsons games and The Movie. So, what’s stopping the writers giving him a spin-off? Superhero TV series are big at the moment. So one about the biggest-superhero-fan-turned-crime-fighter would fit in perfectly and could have legs to go all the way.
After figuring out the secret of being a crime fighter – hiding in the shadows and jumping out when the bad guys least expect it – Comic Book Guy decides to give it a go. As he is widely known as ‘Comic Book Guy’, he just uses his own name as his alias: enter Super-Jeff.
A whole heap of storylines would ensue. Between running the comic bookstore, meeting other superheroes and fighting crime on the side. Maybe he could find a girl that has his favourite qualities. I mean that she’s near mint and comes from a very limited edition — females who will talk to him!
3. Side Show Bob – No Longer The Side Show
Dr. Robert Underdunk Terwilliger, also known as criminal Side Show Bob. He has been in The Simpsons since the eighth episode of the first season, ‘The Telltale Head’. Yet, his antagonistic character wasn’t revealed until the twelfth episode, ‘Krusty Gets Busted’. This is the one when he framed his employer, Krusty the Clown, for the Kwik-E-Mart robbery. Found out and thrown into prison due to Bart’s detective skills, Robert’s evil intentions turned towards Bart, and in time the whole Simpson family.
But that was so season 1 – 17.
Now, he is a full-time criminal mastermind with a wife Francesca Terwilliger and Child Gino Terwilliger. So, what better way to get back at The Simpsons than to try to steal their ‘longest-running scripted series in U.S history’ title away from them in his own family spin-off? The voice of Side Show Bob, Kelsey Grammer, knows all too well about leaving one show – Cheers – for his own spin-off – Frasier – and outlasting the original.
Pretty much like The Simpsons, but only more scheming and only one child.
4. Groundskeeper Willie – The Backstory
Arguably, one of the best characters in The Simpsons is Groundskeeper Willie. In fact, he was famously voted the person most Americans associate with Scotland. He beat Sir Sean Connery, Ewan McGregor and many other famous Scottish personalities to the top spot!
He is also known for his sassy comebacks like the below interaction with Priceable Skinner in Season 18’s “Yokel Chords”:
Groundskeeper Willie: I’ll bring those kids back dead or alive!
Skinner: Not DEAD!
Groundskeeper Willie: Aw, you never let Willie be Willie!
But his mysterious past is what keeps us intrigued for a Simpsons spin-off. Especially as there has been many contradictory mentions about his past. It took until Season 23 to finally find out that Groundskeeper Willie is from Kirkwall in Orkney, not Aberdeen or Edinburgh as presumed! When conversations about his likeness to the Aberdeen Strangler arise, he responds by whistling…
His elusive past got me thinking about an intriguing spin-off, delving into his backstory. We could even give Willy back some of his hair, as we explore his 20s before he heads to America.
A 20-something Willie shows us his reasons for leaving Scotland and answers the now age-old question: is he the ‘Aberdeen Strangler’?
5. Lurleen Lumpkin – The Wonder Years
She has been in the least number of episodes on this list (just 17 episodes in total), but as a bit of a wild card, let’s add Lurleen Lumpkin into the mix for a spin-off from The Simpsons.
On the 55th episode, Lurleen sung herself into ours and Homer’s lives, and since then has popped up several times, leaving a lasting impression. From her first episode, you could tell there is more to her story than meets the eye, therefore a perfect candidate for a spin-off.
There has never been a cartoon about a famous country singer before. Perhaps Lurleen is a struggling musician, but after her brief stint with Homer as her manager, her career gains some traction as she hits highs and lows of the music industry. From washed-up bars to sold-out shows, think Nashville, but yellow and with more bar fights.
6. Keeping Up with Mr Burns and Smithers
It’s the unrequited love story that just keeps giving. So, why wouldn’t we want to take a closer look into the inner workings of their endearingly one-sided relationship?
Both characters have been in the show since the very first episode and have been through a lot both individually and together. I mean Mr Burns has been shot, had his heart broken several times, and turned into an alien, all by the tender age of about 118 years old.
Whilst he’s never been shot, Smithers has also had it pretty rough, from his thyroid condition to being hopelessly in love with Mr Burns. Oh, and changing skin colour through the years.
It’s easy to see the comedy and entertainment qualities that could come from a series around Charles Montgomery Burns and Waylon Smithers.
This series could be filmed like a reality show, so you can see what both sides are thinking, much like ‘Kardashian’-Esque interview segments.
So, there you have it for individual and pairs of characters. Fox Broadcasting Company, hit us up! If you’ve loved these ideas, here are a couple more around groups of people and places that could also carry their own Simpsons spin-off too.
7. Teaching at Springfield Elementary
Now, unfortunately, as much as I wanted to I couldn’t quite see a full spin-off around just Principle Skinner, but, that doesn’t mean he can’t be in one!
Between 2001 – 2004, there was a British series called ‘Teachers’, starring Andrew Lincoln, who is now better known as playing Rick Grimes in The Walking Dead. ‘Teachers’ was incredibly funny and relatable, so let’s do what The Simpsons do best and recreate that in Springfield.
The show won’t include any of the Simpsons family, as it would have been filmed after Bart and Lisa have left school. Though it would be interesting to have some remanence of Bart and Lisa around the halls as Easter Eggs, such as Bart’s graffiti and Lisa’s awards.
But, all the teachers we know and love will be there, and maybe even Groundskeeper Willie too (giving him two well-deserved roles in these spin-offs). Or, we could set this series earlier and resurrect the awesome Mrs Krabappel.
Come on… you knew this was coming! We couldn’t talk about possible spin-offs without mentioning Moe’s Tavern! Like Frasier came after Cheers, let’s flip the switch and Bring Moe’s after The Simpsons. It’s already been mentioned in The Simpsons itself that this establishment could have a spin-off of its own, so come on Matt Groening, let’s get it sorted!
There would also be a whole host of The Simpsons characters involved, including Homer Simpson, Barney Gumble, Carl Carlson, Lenny Leonard and the main man himself, Moe Szyslak. All among other new and old characters that were often seen in the Tavern.
A group of people from different paths of life meet at Moe’s, a bar run by Moe in Springfield. They share their experiences while working and drinking at the bar (okay, this was taken from the Cheers plot-explanation on Google… I mean if Cheers could last 275 episodes across 7 seasons, I know Moe’s could give it a pretty good shot too!). It was all briefly teased in the epic Flaming Moe’s episode, make it happen.
“¡Ay, caramba!” so that’s it for our list of The Simpsons characters who deserve their own spin-off show. But let’s face it, there are a lot of colourful characters in The Simpsons too.
We thought these were the ones that really could take off like Santa’s Little Helper, how did we do? Can you think of any others and what plots they could have? Comment below!
More of our TV articles HERE.
Read IMDB information on The Simpsons HERE.
Loki Episode 6 – Review
Episode six of Loki from Marvel is here, streaming now on Disney Plus. It’s time for the series finale. Here’s our review.
SPOILERS: If you’re reading this then you’ve probably seen the show, but if not there are spoilers ahead.
More to come
The post-credit scene showed that a second series has already been ordered, meaning this finale is essentially the end of Part One. Thank goodness it is. Because if this was the denouement of the entire Loki story then there’s a good chance it would go down in television infamy as one of the more unusual series endings.
Introducing the big bad
We pick up from Sylvie and Loki’s defeat of The Alioth as they look at the citadel upon the rock at the end of time. They make their way to the entrance, and upon being invited in they’re met by Miss Minutes. It’s been widely predicted that ‘she’ would be an agitator in this series. And at last her role has been revealed. She is an emissary of Kang The Conquerer, embedded within the TVA.
She offers Loki the earth, almost literally, as she tries to coax him to betray Sylvie. Her offers of infinity stones, defeating Thanos etc. Happily, Loki rejects all the trinkets that she offers. Instead, he and Sylvie head into the lift where they meet ‘He Who Remains’ aka Kang The Conquerer. A 31st-century scientist and the true timekeeper.
Sylvie attempts to kill him but he quickly demonstrates some of his powers by dodging and weaving her before she gives in and the three of them sit down for a very long discussion. To sum up what was a lengthy and occasionally fairly tedious scene. He Who Remains (HWR) asks Loki and Sylvie to kill him and take over the role of controlling the timeline. Loki is extremely reticent but Sylvie, angry at what HWR’s meddling has done to her life, is desperate to do so.
Meanwhile, back at TVA HQ, Renslayer is informed by Miss Minutes of HWR’s plan. Showing her dual role and playing on Renslayer’s desperation to keep the TVA active and relevant.
Loki and Sylvie get into a physical fight over what to do with HWR. With Loki recognising how the timeline will fragment with branches springing up all over the place. But Sylvie is consumed by her rage and eventually overpowers Loki, sending him back to the TVA and then kills He Who Remains.
Setting up season two
Loki finds Mobius and tries to explain what has happened. But then discovers the terrible effects of what Sylvie has done by apparently killing HWR. Mobius has no idea who Loki is. This situation is then made worse when Loki looks out to see a statue of He Who Remains adorning TVA HQ. Loki realises that he is in a different timeline branch. One where HWR or Kang is in control of everything. Sylvie has been manipulated into apparently killing him which has enabled him to increase his power further.
Jonathan Majors was masterful as He Who Remains. Which is what you’d expect from someone with a Masters in acting from Yale. He was flamboyant, powerful and mesmerising, which is exactly what you want from a major villain. He will be back in AntMan 3 as Kang The Conquerer and is set to be the key villain in the next phase of the MCU post-Endgame and Thanos.
I have been extremely positive about this series, as I think it has been the strongest and most cohesive of the Marvel series so far this year. But I can’t disagree with anyone who felt short-changed by this finale. My 11-year-old son was pretty vocal in his disappointment the moment the credits rolled, and he was absolutely right. He is one of the most obsessive Marvel fans around and if he was underwhelmed, I feel pretty sure he was reflecting the majority view. Nothing I’ve seen online since has dissuaded me from that either.
Phase 4 groundwork
It seemed that the finale was essentially an exercise in introducing He Who Remains or Kang to our screens ahead of AntMan 3. While this isn’t necessarily a problem, it meant that the focus shifted away from being the climax of this series. Instead of being a prologue for the next phase of the MCU, which does seem a peculiar decision.
There are those who feel that the series original premise of Loki and Mobius teaming up to find Variants dotted around time and space was dropped after the first two episodes. Instead, it was replaced with a love story between Sylvie and Loki and a voyage of discovery with Mobius reduced to a bit part for the rest of the series.
But, the cliffhanger at the end of the series as Loki returns to the TVA does give me hope that Series Two will be an even better follow up.
CULTURE CROSSING SCORE 6/10
Thank you for reading our review of Loki episode six. Do you agree or disagree with our points or have anything to add? If so, leave us a comment below.
Read our Loki episode five review HERE.
Read IMDB information about Loki HERE.
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