In its 25-season history, "The Simpsons" has not been shy about the occasional death of a character: Think Frank Grimes, Bleeding Gums Murphy and, most notoriously, Ned Flanders' wife, Maud.
And now the show is about to do it again, as The Sun News reported, quoting executive producer Al Jean from a conference call discussing the new season's debut.
"I'll give you a clue that the actor playing the character won an Emmy for playing that character, but I won't say who it is," said Jean.
Gauntlet thrown. So who could it be? Well, there's always the chance he's referring to one of the numerous characters Dan Castellaneta and Hank Azaria have played over the years. Both actors (best known as Homer and Apu, respectively) have lent their voice to, and won multiple Emmys for, a variety of characters in Springfield, any of which could go (barring the biggest ones). Equally, Emmy winner Nancy Cartwright (who won in 1992 for voicing Bart) and Yeardley Smith (also a 1992 winner for voicing Lisa) are surely not on the chopping block.
But if we take away the other likely suspects, here's the list of Emmy winners for individual characters (as per the IMDB):
- Anne Hathaway, Princess Penelope
- Kelsey Grammer, Sideshow Bob
- Jackie Mason, Rabbi Krustofsky
- Julie Kavner, Jacqueline Bouvier (aka Marge's mom)
- Marcia Wallace, Mrs. Krabappel
Each of which is a likely suspect, though some more likely than others (Marge's mom and Rabbi Krustofsky are older characters, and there could be a poignant death scene), and Hathaway's Penelope was a peripheral, passing character who might just return to pass on. Mrs. Krabappel? Well, she's happily wed to Ned last we checked and it seems unlikely the show would kill off yet another of Ned's spouses. (Plus, who would torment Bart at school?)
So honestly, we're stumped. Who do you think is going to make an exit this season on "The Simpsons"?