Back to IndieWire

W. Kamau Bell Slams ‘The Simpsons’ for ‘Ridiculous and Toothless’ Response to Apu Controversy

"The 'argument' the episode makes is basically things used to be better before political correctness when nobody cared about all these groups," Bell explains.

Shutterstock / Fox

W. Kamau Bell took to Twitter following the April 8 episode of “The Simpsons” to criticize the show’s response to the Apu controversy. The Fox animated series has been scrutinized for its stereotypical portrayal of Springfield’s Kwik-E-Mart owner Apu Nahasapeemapetilon. A recent episode found Marge and Lisa alluding to the fact that the show still has no idea what to do with the character.

“It’s hard to say,” Lisa said. “Something that started decades ago and was applauded and inoffensive is now politically incorrect. What can you do?” The show then panned to a picture of Apu.

Bell responded on Twitter: “I think the fact that they put this ‘argument’ in the mouth of Lisa’s character, the character who usually champions the underdogs and is supposed to be the most thoughtful and liberal, is what makes this the most ridiculous (as in worthy of ridicule) and toothless response.”

“The ‘argument’ the episode makes is basically things used to better before political correctness when nobody cared about all these groups,” Bell continued. “It ignores the facts that ALL THESE GROUPS ALWAYS CARED ABOUT ALL THESE GROUPS. But these groups’ complaints weren’t respected/supported.”

The comic and television host also referenced his friend, Hari Kondabolu, who wrote and starred in the documentary “The Problem with Apu.” The movie explored the history of “The Simpsons” character and asked South Asian actors, comedians, and more to weigh in on how well the character represents their culture.

You can read Bell’s entire response to “The Simpsons” episode in the Twitter thread below.

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged ,