Al Jean, the showrunner for The Simpsons, has explained the decision the show made to pull the Michael Jackson episode from syndication and streaming services.
In the wake of the Michael Jackson documentary Leaving Neverland on HBO, the disturbing sexual abuse accusations against the deceased pop star have caught fresh attention. The Simpsons have since decided to pull the episode ‘Star Raving Dad’ from streaming services and syndication because it guest starred Jackson.
Now The Simpsons‘ showrunner Al Jean has detailed further the decision to remove the episode during a panel at South by Southwest (via Slash Film): “It wasn’t something that makes me happy. It’s something I agree with completely. What saddens me is, if you watch that documentary—which I did, and several of us here did—and you watch that episode, honestly, it looks like the episode was used by Michael Jackson for something other than what we’d intended it. It wasn’t just a comedy to him, it was something that was used as a tool. And I strongly believe that… I think it was part of what he used to groom boys. I really don’t know, and I should be very careful because this is not something I know personally, but as far as what I think, that’s what I think. And that makes me very, very sad.”
There’s no question that the pop icon’s reputation has taken a fresh hit as a result of the documentary and decisions like this by The Simpsons is just one example. Do you think this was the right call by the show? Let us know in the comments below…