TV Club: The Simpsons (Classic): “The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase”

“The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase” (originally aired 5/11/1997)

In which “Spin-off!” is there any word more thrilling to the human soul?

It’s remarkable that The Simpsons has never produced a proper spin-off. That’s not for lack of trying: Over the years, Matt Groening and company have batted around multiple ideas for new series starring the familiar faces of Springfield—like a proposed live-action comedy about the Hollywood exploits of a relocated Krusty The Clown—but none have stuck. It’s not like a spin-off is beneath such a lauded TV institution as The Simpsons—after all, the series itself spun off from The Tracey Ullman Show.

The tongue-in-cheek segments of “The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase” make theoretical Simpsons-adjacent programming look pretty flimsy, but the episode mirrors the format of the best of all possible Simpsons spin-offs. Inspired by the creative heights of “22 Short Films About Springfield …

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