I was lucky enough to see the Simpsons Take the Hollywood Bowl on Saturday. I joked with my brother in-law that we went on the best night: Friday probably felt like an experient/work in progress, Sunday the performers would probably be tired, but Saturday would be the perfect show. The event was better than I could have imagined and helped me fall in love with the Simpsons again after a long time in the “It fell off after season blah blah blah”.
The show was hosted by Hank Azaria. You may know him from such voices has Chief Wiggum, Apu, Moe, and a handful of other characters. He’s probably the most recognizable face from all the voice actors, having a considerable resume in Hollywood beyond the Simpsons, but it really is amazing to see him physically transform as he does different voices.
I confess to not having watched any episodes in a VERY long time. I’m not even sure if musicals are still part of the show’s arsenal, but that didn’t matter on Saturday. Some notable tracks that had the crowd singing along include “Who Needs the Kwik-E-Mart”, the monorail song (sang by “the only writer anyone cares about” Conan O’Brien), “Put the Spring in Springfield” (David Silverman’s flaming sousaphone was insane), “Minimum Wage Nanny”, “Happy Birthday Lisa”.
Fans were also treated to a few clips made exclusively for the event like the intro “are we there yet?” sequence as we watch Simpsons’ arduous journey from the parking lot into the Hollywood Bowl.
Unfortunately, not all voices were present in the celebration, Dan Castellaneta (Homer), Julie Kavner (Marge), Harry Shearer (Mr. Burns) were no where to be found. Having the entire cast would have really opened the door to more live bits and also reminded me even more how much I love The Simpsons.