Remember the wondrous time in the mid-90’s when “The Simpsons” almost single-handedly made life worth living? When it was so side-splittingly and effortlessly funny that it not only proved to be one of the great treasures in the history of entertainment, but the history of the world? Before it stayed on so long that it just became a bastardized and, at times even a depressing shell of its former self? Well, whether you do or not, you should. And if you do, there is a glorious website that celebrates the heyday of what once was the greatest accomplishment in the history of television.
Eyeonspringfield (eyeonspringfield.tumblr.com) bills itself as “a retrospective of Simpsons hilarity spanning from seasons 1 to 9, when it was still funny.” While this declaration isn’t 100% accurate (the show didn’t really become great until season three, which could account for why there’s hardly a speck of season one or two material on the site) it does offer a glorious hodgepodge of hilarity from the legendary shows glory days. “Eye on Springfield” (which, for those of you who disgracefully don’t know, takes its name from a news feature program hosted by Kent Brockman on the show) is a collection of random site gags, captions and audio clips from select Simpsons episodes in the before mentioned era. For super fans like myself, it gives a reminder of how great a program “The Simpsons” used to be. Anyone who knows me will attest to the fact that I am as cool a customer as there is. And while I ooze Fonzie like hipness out of every pour, I will admit that quoting random Simpsons moments with a select group of friends is my one admitted nerdy indulgence. If a transcript were ever to be made of these conversations, it would look something like this website. It doesn’t just offer up generic standards like “Do’h” or “Ay Caramba,” but really pulls out the truly hysterical moments from the shows prime run. Bits like an adventurous Marge’s temptation to purchase the latest issue of “Bear Baiter” Magazine, or retelling of the tale of Jimmy, the disillusioned teenager who naively thought the world would be a better place without Zinc. If there is one gripe that could be made for the site is that it is too random to appeal to anyone outside the shows hardcore fan-base. But it’s hard to really knit pick about it when that seems to be the whole point. It is for hardcore fans only and if you fall into this demographic, you will eagerly sit by your computer screen waiting to see what the Eye On Springfield team posts on each successive day.
This site isn’t so much about nostalgia as I could easily watch all of the chronicled episodes at point on DVD. It’s just the fun of seeing a group of people making reference to various moments that me and my somewhat dorky companions bring up in everyday conversation. It’s almost as if the site creators picked our brains and created a perfect website from our collective thoughts. Most importantly, it’s proves that no matter how unfunny and stale “The Simpsons” becomes, the producers, try as they might, will never be able to tarnish the legacy they created back in the 90’s when the show was as close to flawless as anything the entertainment industry has ever created.
• Fantastic content
• Great nostalgia value
• Keeps one eagerly awaiting the latest content post
• Too random to appeal to new fans (though if you haven’t watched and fallen in love with the episodes referenced on the site, who the hell wants to talk to you anyway?)
• I didn’t create it (In a life full of missed opportunities, letting someone beat me to the punch on the creation of this site may be the biggest one.)
Final Score: 9.5/10