It’s been soldiering on for no apparent reason for several years now, but it looks like The Simpsons, the longest-running American sitcom, the longest-running American animated program, and the longest-running American scripted primetime television series, is finally coming to a close.
Showrunner Al Jean had the following exchange during an interview with The Hollywood Reporter:
You’re renewed through season 28, with the cast signed on with options through season 30. Do you want to do more after 30?
It’s quite possible that we don’t have to go through the whole negotiation for 30. I wouldn’t be stunned if we stopped at 28 but my bet is on at least 30. But then you’d have to resign them again. If you made me pick one, I’d say the likeliest is ending after 30, but I’ve been wrong before. I thought five seasons was good when I got there (laughs).
It looks like 28 seasons is the minimum we’ll get then, and 30 - a nice round number - is likely when it’ll stop, bar a late boost in interest.
Salty though fans have become about recent seasons of The Simpsons, I’m sure there will still be a fair few tears shed when the jaundiced family sit down on their couch for the last time.
Ending the show must be a daunting prospect for the creators, given how many characters there are to say goodbye to and with a sense of closure viewers will demand.
Earlier in the week, we learned that a long-running sub-plot will finally come to fruition next season - with Smithers set to come out of the closet.
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