Why Some Simpsons Fans Worry About The Series’ Longevity

So far, The Simpsons has taken a very deliberate approach to losing actors. Vulture reports that when Phil Hartman passed away, his recurring characters Troy McClure and Lionel Hutz, as well as other minor characters he voiced, disappeared from the show. Similarly, when Marcia Wallace died in 2013, The Simpsons writers wrote a tribute episode reworking old dialogue as a way to say goodbye to the character (via Diversity). In fact, real-life deaths have led to the mysterious disappearance of many Simpsons characters.

However, The Simpsons has never had to deal with an abrupt departure from a series regular. During a discussion on the r/TheSimpsons subreddit, a number of fans of the show discussed how such a loss would affect the series. Unsurprisingly, many of these questions concerned the voice actors of the main members of the titular family. In one post u/financial-donut-6560 asked, “What do you think they would do if someone like Dan Castellanet or one of the other actors suddenly died?” Of course, the unknown answer to this question is too complex to understand or contemplate.

However, several predictions have been proposed. For example, u/rosathoseareourdads insisted that this would certainly mean the end of the series. Conversely, a number of other commentators insisted that the producers simply recast the roles. Perhaps one of the most interesting proposals came from u/TFlarzwho wrote, “I’m almost literally 50/50 between ‘they’ll just make new scripts using existing voice clips’ and ‘end the show completely and run reruns’.”

While it remains to be seen how the show can actually handle such a situation, we just hope we’re still a long way from the writers having to deal with such a difficult issue.

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