The Simpsons aired its first-ever high-definition episode Sunday, and with it came a mostly new and appropriately HD-fancy twist on the familiar opening of the show.
For the Simpsons obsessive, there is much to love about the new sequence, from Kearney and Jimbo sawing off the head of Jebediah Springfield before we zoom into Bart writing on the chalkboard (“HDTV is worth every cent”) to finally being able to see what the price is when Maggie gets scanned at the grocery ($486.52). Sideshow Bob and Apu’s octuplets are new additions to the sidewalk as Bart skates by.
There are also several goodies in the whip-pan across town, including Ralph Wiggum building a sand castle atop the grave of Frank Grimes. Burns and Smithers, who have been replaced by Lenny and Carl at the nuclear plant, are there too, along with Blinky the three-eyed fish and Spiderpig. Fat Tony and his guys are dumping a body over by the school bus, and God and the devil appear to be engaged in an argument.
I was a little underwhelmed with the couch gag, which had the family chasing the couch all over the globe and into outer space. It was a nice way to show off how good The Simpsons looks in hi-def, but it wasn’t as funny or inspired as, say, The Evolution of Homer or the Powers of Ten parody, to cite a couple of relatively recent examples.
If you haven’t seen it, the whole episode is on Hulu. Here’s just the opening sequence.
Thoughts? Do you like the new opening, or should the show just have spiffed up the old sequence?