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‘Simpsons’ Showrunner Al Jean Says No Further Seasons Will Be Released on DVD

'Simpsons' Showrunner Al Jean Says No Further Seasons Will Be Released on DVD

You don’t have to look too hard for signs of the slow death of physical media, but here’s a particularly cromulent one: “Simpsons” showrunner Al Jean said today that the show will not be releasing any further seasons on DVD. 

Fox has released 18 season of “The Simpsons” on DVD — Seasons 1-17 and 20 — and several on Blu-ray, and that, for the forseeable future, is that. Given the much-touted launch of the online “Simpsons World” portal last year, it’s not entirely surprising that Fox is choosing to cut bait on physical media, but if a show with as loyal a fanbase as “The Simpsons” can’t put up the necessary sales, that doesn’t bode well for other shows either. FX has scaled back home video releases for its own shows as well, downgrading “The Americans” and “Louie” from Blu-ray to DVD-only and pushing viewers towards streaming the shows on Amazon Prime, where the visual quality is at least on a par with DVD, if not approaching Blu-ray. 

Jean said that he and “The Simpsons” crew will continue to record the elaborate group commentaries — a highlight of the DVDs — and that they should be available through “Simpsons World.” And he did not rule out a series-encompassing DVD or Blu-ray set once “The Simpsons” has completed its run. But the launch of “Simpsons World” illustrates the trade-offs in the switch between formats. Yes, you can access any episode you want whenever you want, but the months it took FX to follow through on their initial promise to allow viewers the option of watching the episodes in their original aspect ratio illustrates the shift in control from owner to provider, from buyer to seller. At least, Jean promises, “Simpsons World” won’t be charging extra for commentaries, deleted scenes or any other added content. He wrote, “I don’t think The Simpsons should ever ask for money without providing you a cheap toy.”

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Kenny Brockelstein

I stopped buying Simpsons DVDs after season 14. As far as I’m concerned, the show I loved ended there. I was always tempted to buy newer seasons just for the commentaries, though. Don’t have cable or Prime, and will not be getting it.


This is a crock as I collect these and I can watch them even when net is down or unaccessable… not to mention that means even more bandwidth I would have to use… you could have at the very least did season 18 and 19 so it wouldn’t look stupid!!!!!

Richard Stein

This is absolutely terrible news. I have been collecting these DVDs for years and this is how I watch the Simpsons now. I do not get cable as I like to have the physical copies of seasons. Please bring the seasons back out on DVD.

Ricardo Leon

Hello when can I buy the new season on DVD or blue ray?

d handk

no more simpson time to get rid of my collection

Dean Stewart

My wife started buying Simpsons episodes starting with season 1. She gave them to me as Christmas presents each year. She died of colon cancer 7-12-10 and it has helped to hold on to her memory by continuing this tradition. I cant believe that the sales are so low that it is not fiancially viable to continue. Go ahead and leave all of us fans hanging. It just reinforces my bad feelings of American industrial mentality to not deliver to consumers and to rape us of every cent they can.

Pete ross

What kind of business sense does that make? They are leaving a whole bunch of money on the table. Plus they’re screwing longtime fans who care about quality (blu-ray, commentaries, deleted scenes, featurettes, case artwork) over streaming.


This is why you find the non-legitimate DVD’s on the market.


I’m really upset about them discontinuing the DVDs. The show started before I was born and was very eager to complete the entire collection. I now have seasons 1-17 and that was a lot of money spent. I can’t access anything that streams due to data issues. I live in the mountains where satellite data caps are awful. I was wondering why I couldn’t find the series past 17. I feel like I was just given the middle finger. Thanks guys.

Nick E-Z

Physical media isn’t dead. It never will be as long as you have sixty year old grannies who don’t know what ‘the cloud’ is, who wouldn’t know where to look for ‘on line content’, who have just figured out what to do with their DVD/Blu-ray player and remote. Streaming satisfies some, but it sure as hell outrages the rest. Hollywood, despite its predilection for ‘controlling’ content, isn’t about to alienate an entire segment of the population who want to ‘own’ stuff instead of merely renting invisible space on the internet, destined to slow down their computers. The pundits decry physical media with such diatribes about the end of days in the hopes that wishing will make it so. As the movies these days have become largely disposable junkets dedicated to our chronic mind-numbing consumption of zombies, vampires, super heroes and crotch-grabbing comedies (which aren’t funny, by the way – just crude, stupid and in great danger of lowering the national I.Q. level, one idiotic point at a time), to say nothing of the gut-wrenching, thoughtlessly conceived actioner or horror movie. Here’s a clue for the studios about their consumer base who want physical media: we’re not interested in collecting crap on DVD or Blu-ray. A standard or hi-def movie that is brainless and boring is better off in ‘the cloud’ where it can effectively get lost over time. But the classics: these should never be, and likely will never surrender themselves to the ageless invisible ether. Fox’s decision to cancel The Simpsons on DVD and Blu-ray comes at a time when the TV show itself is gradually losing steam and viewers. Their launch of Simpsons World is just another snatch and grab, meant to draw in fans of the older shows, most of whom already own these classic episodes on disc. Exactly who the end of physical media is supposed to satisfy is unclear. Certainly not the die hard fan. But also not the casual consumer who just wants to see their favorite episodes without the hassle of having to hunt down their memories on the internet, then figure out how to port over the content to a TV feed so that they can sit on their couch and wonder whatever happened to home video. Yuck and who needs it? Not I. Dumb decision on Fox’s part. One they will eventually regret – perhaps sooner, rather than later!


You’re all a bunch of selfish bastards. Nobody cares about you or your commentaries; as Consumers, we expected better. We want physical carbon copies of our beloved shows that pretty much the entire world has grown up with over the decades and to share those moments with our kids. You’re saying that once they’re done broadcasting that’s it. Lost. Forever. Many of is don’t have the luxury of watching everything on TV thus we BUY our favorite shows on dvd/bluray. Bad call, jerks.

Logan Houchen

I too was in this for the long haul. Getting the DVDs up until the 20th season when they started going digital, then I would go blu ray. I live in Canada. I find that streaming quality personally is not as good as DVD/Blu Ray. In fact, I see that you usually pay a hefty bit more. I do not feel like I own a digital copy as opposed to when I have a physical copy in my hand. Fox needs to get back on board and realize that it’s only because the prices are so high when they come out ($35 for a Blu ray movie, like really. This is why noone is buying them) and not the "low demand" that is causing the drop in physical media buying. Yes a season of a show would be $100 when it first came out, however it’s so cheap to produce now,everyone would be buying them if the prices were not in it for the company’s high profits.

Heather Loving

The Simpsons have been my favorite show since forever and i grew up with this family. Iam trying to get all the seasons and I need 18 and 19. Do you know where I can buy or download these seasons. I would love yo have all the seasons! It is my favorite show!

Daniel Tolson

This is so disappointing. Ive collected every season so far. Im a lifelong simpsons watcher and ive been waiting for more seasons on dvd for a while now. Checking walmart and amazon almost monthly waiting for the next season. Please reconsider, as you can see there are a lot of fans who still want to collect the dvds.

Bailey Ryan

I am very disappointed that they wont be releasing any more seasons on dvd because i have been collecting from the start and there are some pretty good episodes on season 18 and season 19 but now no more dvds I am truly disgraced

N Benjamin

Well, as Fox hasn’t been releasing OFFICIAL dvds (not counting Amazon’s copied from DVR versions that are of poor quality) of certain seasons of their shows for awhile now (examples: Louie seasons 3-present; Wilfred seasons 3 and 4, Legit season 2; etc) this doesn’t come as a great surprise to me.

Ben Sitzer

To Sam Adams, article writer,

The phrase ‘cut bait’ doesn’t mean to ‘stop doing something.’ It means ‘to prepare to do something.’

It comes from the phrase ‘to fish, or cut bait’. Which means ‘to go fishing, or prepare to go fishing’. With ‘cutting bait’ meaning to cut up pieces of fish to use as bait/chum.

The context for correct use of the phrase is, to question someone who’s dawdling or procrastinating, or spending too much time getting ready to do something, by saying, ‘Are you going to fish or cut bait?’

Correct usage of the phrase would also have to include the entire phrase ‘fish or cut bait’; not just ‘cut bait’ as you used in the article.


You’ve got to be kidding me. I’ve been collecting The Simpsons seasons for over 10 years, and they’re just going to stop? It was almost a yearly (or bi-yearly tradition back when they were putting them out faster), where I would go out and purchase the new season, and spend the whole day watching through. Yeah I have access to FX now, but I was planning on getting rid of my cable soon when I move. Sure, I’ll still have the first 17 seasons on physical media, and there really aren’t that many great episodes in the remaining seasons, but could they not finish what they started?

Brian H

Well, no season 18 and 19 I will sell off all of the previously released seasons. I was in this for the long haul and will not double dip on a complete series set. You took my money and ran. Well, I’m just as finished with the Simpsons as you are.

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