Eye On Springfield with Sean Barry

eye on springfield

For the last Eye On Springfield for 2015, I talked with one of my favorite people on Twitter, Sean Barry. Sean writes about metal for Consequence Of Sound and in general has some pretty excellent taste in music. We often bond over a shared love of bands like Deafheaven and Vattnet Viskar. He’s also a big Simpsons fan, helping contribute to the Treehouse Of Horror interviews I did back in October.

Thanks to Sean and I hope to work with him again on Xtapolapometal in 2016!

What is your history with The Simpsons? Do you remember the first time you saw the show?

I remember that it was the show my parents vowed I would never be allowed to watch when I was younger, but by the age of 7 or 8, I was hooked. We had a taped copy of “Last Exit to Springfield” on VHS, and I remember watching that episode a lot whenever there weren’t any reruns on TV. I also remember getting a Treehouse of Horror compilation DVD when I was in the fourth or fifth grade that I watched over and over and even out of the Halloween season.
I don’t know why I loved the show so much even though it was one that my parents mostly despised. I guess I just connected with it on some comedic or familial level that all Simpsons fans eventually do.
Who is your favorite character?
Milhouse, of course. It’s like that character is written for any sort of misfit kid who’s gone through divorce and spends their youth trying to figure out what kind of person they’re going to be.
Do you have a favorite episode(s)?
As I mentioned above, “Last Exit to Springfield” certainly has that nostalgia factor for me. The same goes for “Lisa’s First Word”. I remember finding naked Bart swinging from a clothesline to be the funniest thing I had ever seen when I was a kid.
More recently, though, with episodes being more available in the past year, I discovered “Marge Be Not Proud” from Season 7, and along with the inclusion of the eternal Thrillhouse joke, I found the episode to be one of the most poignant with Bart learning what it was like to grow up in your parents’ disappointment rather than scorn. It really struck a chord with me on first viewing. I think I even teared up a bit. AlsoBonestorm would be my pick for a Simpsons-themed metal band name.
The Simpsons has a wide array of guest stars. Do you have a favorite?
It’s an easy pick, but I’m always delighted with Kelsey Grammar’s performances as Sideshow Bob. Even in the latter seasons with the writers just phoning in his Bart-centered homicidal plot lines, he still delivers every time.
Who from the world of metal would you love to see guest on the show?
I imagine Ghost would make for a really cool cameo in an upcoming Treehouse episode maybe worshipping Flanders’ devil.
Do you have a favorite musical number from The Simpsons? Also, what band would you love to see cover said song?
Lisa’s strike song from “Last Exit To Springfield” still gets stuck in my head from time to time.
But when it comes to artists covering the show’s best songs, and I’m sorry here Nate, but I imagine Animal Collective playfully covering “You Don’t Win Friends With Salad” in the same sort of style as “College” from Sung Tongs.
I’ve always thought Lisa Simpson would be the one character to end up getting into punk or metal. Who do you think will grow up and discover metal or punk?
I could totally see Milhouse sporting a Deafheaven t-shirt in his early 20s (Because I often sport a Deafheaven t-shirt in my early 20s).
Do you still watch new episodes of the show? If not, do you remember what made you stop watching?
Not really, unless I feel optimistic about a particular episode because I’ve see some high praise for or something. Inevitably, though, I get disappointed with it and swear it off until another episode comes along with the same sort of hype, and then the cycle begins again.
The show’s jokes have just gotten too unfocused and seemingly specific for an audience that I don’t necessarily feel apart of anymore.
How would you like to see the series end? Any ideas on where you would like to see the family end up?
Unceremoniously, with no big plot points or anything; just the family gathering around to sit on the couch and watch TV. Something simple and open ended.
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Sean recently posted a best of 2015 list on Consequence Of Sound that is excellent. Check it out HERE! You can also follow him on Twitter HERE!
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