Simpsons Alludes to Apu Stereotype Controversy, Documentarian Fires Back

'The Simpsons' Responds to Apu Controversy: 'Some Things Will Be Dealt With At A Later Date'

'The Simpsons' Responds to Apu Controversy: 'Some Things Will Be Dealt With At A Later Date'

Like promised, creators of The Simpsons have addressed Apu's stereotype controversy that came about late a year ago following a documentary highlighting the character's biased representation. Kondabolu's documentary was released last November, and was met with a divisive reception from critics, with some applauding the various actors who spoke out on the issue and others asking for more defenders of Apu to appear.

The character, who owns a Kwik-E-Mart, has been considered by some to be an offensive stereotype that's out of touch with the current climate in America.

The Simpsons finally defended itself in an episode that aired last night, "No Good Read Goes Unpunished", using a conversation between Lisa and Marge as a vehicle to deliver the response.

"It's hard to say. What can you do?"

She then looks over at a framed picture of Apu, which has the line, "Don't have a cow!" written on it. When Lisa says the character is "already evolved" and "doesn't really have an emotional journey to complete" and therefore there is "no point" to the story, Marge responds, "Well, what am I supposed to do?"

Joe's Carl Kinsella went even further, calling the episode "a gaping wound where the show's amusing bone used to be". And then, to reduce Kondabolu's legitimate criticisms of the show to "political correctness" is self-serving and patronizing.


The most recent airing of The Simpsons featured Marge studying her favorite childhood guide to her daughter Lisa.

The answer to "What can you do?", in addition to "stop", is probably, "Don't make a dismissive and misunderstood response to people who care about the representation of marginalized groups".

The voice actor of Apu, Hank Azaria has recognized the backlash towards his character in the past, saying "I think the documentary made some really interesting points and gave us a lot of things to think about and we really are thinking about it", in an interview with TMZ back in December.

Sunday night's episode was especially disappointing considering how thoughtful Azaria's comments were after he watched the documentary. She hides the racist parts from Lisa, and later updates the story to reflect modern times, including making the lead character a cisgender girl who frees horses and fights for net neutrality.

- whirl'd, please (@travlersdepot) April 9, 2018I'm watching "The Simpsons" since 2003-04 In many episodes they praised Apu. "This is sad." He also referred to the "Don't have a cow, Apu" on the photo of Apu as the writers having "double-downed on white". But The Simpsons didn't dodge The Problem with Apu.

For years, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon was one of the few desi characters on primetime television in the United States. He viewed the long-running show's response as "a jab" against progress.

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