Futurama Cuts UK

Cuts to The Simpsons

Between 1990 and 2000, Sky treated The Simpsons with censorious contempt, even banning the episode The Cartridge Family. All censorship from this period is documented on the old website The Snipsons (see Links).

And, to continue the tradition of listing the rude bits of The Simpsons, here's a selection of the content Sky, the BBC and Channel 4 have found objectionable since 2001:

CUTS BY SKY ONE, 2001-03


The Boy Who Knew Too Much (Season 5)
THE ONE WHERE Bart witnesses something he shouldn't have: the mayor's nephew, Freddy Quimby, brutally attacks a waiter. Or doesn't, as the case may be.

On a terrible school day:
MRS KRABAPPEL   Now unfortunately, our school clocks have been running fast all semester, so today we all have to stay two extra hours to make up for the time we lost. Hah!
(Everyone moans, and Bart looks at the '
Lil Bastard Clock Tampering Kit' in his desk and regrets using it.) [Sky blanked out the words 'Lil Bastard', leaving just a space]
A Star Is Burns (Season 6)
THE ONE WHERE Marge helps to organise a Springfield film festival.

Jay Sherman and Ranier Wolfcastle watch the new "McBain" comedy film, in which the action film hero stands in front of a brick wall with a microphone, the audience remaining unseen throughout:
MCBAIN      Did you ever notice how men always leave the toilet seat up? (pause) That's the joke.
MAN IN AUDIENCE  You suck, McBain!
                     (McBain pulls a machine gun and fires into the audience)
MCBAIN     Now, my Woody Allen impression. (not changing his voice) I'm a neurotic nerd who likes to sleep with little girls.
MAN IN AUDIENCE   Hey, that really sucked!
                     (McBain pulls the pin out of a grenade and tosses it at him)

Originally Sky cut out everything after "That's the joke", giving the viewer quite a different impression of the scene. The BBC didn't censor the episode. Around 2006, Sky regained the rights and, this time, allowed McBain's gun violence, but still cut out the Woody Allen joke.

Who Shot Mr Burns?, pt 1 (Season 6)
THE ONE WHERE Mr Burns gets shot, obviously.

At the town hall meeting, characters list the possessions that Burns cost them:
GRAMPA                     Because of him, I lost my room, my things, and my buddy's collection of old sunbathing magazines.
CRAZY OLD MAN     You bastard!
Homerpalooza (Season 7)
THE ONE WHERE In an effort to stay hip, Homer takes the kids to Lollapalooza-- sorry, "Hullabalooza", but is outcast until he becomes part of the freakshow.

In anger, Homer kicks a cannon, which goes haywire. After several bursts, it shoots its bullet right into Homer's stomach. After bouncing off and falling on the ground, the bullet breaks open, revealing an inflatable pig, which soars in the sky:
ROADIE               Aw, man. There goes Peter Frampton's big finale.
 He's gonna be pissed off.
FRAMPTON       You're damn right I'm going to be pissed off; I bought that pig at Pink Floyd's yard sale!

[Source for lines - The Simpsons Archive]


Trash Of The Titans (Season 9)
THE ONE WHERE Homer is elected sanitation commissioner of Springfield, with sexy results.

After Homer interrupts the Springfield U2 concert:
BONO            Wait! He's talking about the sanitation commissioner. That concerns the whole planet!
THE EDGE   Oh, here we go...
LARRY           I'm going to Moe's for a pint.
ADAM            Can I come?
LARRY           No.
ADAM            Wankers. (whistles and fiddles with a knob on his bass guitar)

In the closing credits, the band U2 are on a plane:
ADAM             Look, guys.  I got a Springfield spoon for my spoon collection.
THE EDGE    Oh, here we go...  
BONO             How many spoons have you got now, Adam?
ADAM             Nine.  If I didn't have my spoons, I'd go insane.
BONO             Can I see it?
(Adam hands him the spoon; Bono promptly throws it behind his head)
ADAM             My spoon!
(The spoon lands on Mr Burns's head; he's sitting in the seat behind The Edge)
MR. BURNS    Ow! 
(stands up) Wankers.

Both of these lines were cut by Sky and BBC, although there was a slight difference in Mr Burns's line, the final line of the episode. Sky just ended the episode there (missing out the last credit or so), while BBC kept the credits in, but dubbed "Ow!" again when Burns said "Wankers". What a bunch of wankers.
And here are some more:
Missionary: Impossible (Season 11)
THE ONE WHERE Homer donates $10,000 to the television channel PBS. When asked to pay up, he flees and has to become a missionary in the south Pacific.

BART         You're watching PBS?
HOMER     Hey, I'm as surprised as you, but I stumbled across the most delicious British sitcom.
                   (the title of the show appears on the screen)
BART        (reading it) 'Do Shut Up'?
HOMER     It's about a hard-drinking yet loving family of soccer hooligans.
 If they're not having a go with the birds, they're having a row with the wankers.
BART        Cheeky.
Sky cut all of that dialogue. The BBC only cut three words in their version:
"...they're having a row
with the wankers."

Behind The Laughter (Season 11)
THE ONE WHERE This spoof documentary looks at the highs and lows throughout the history of the series, which Homer actually writes himself y'know.

CUTS BY SKY ONE (but not BBC Two)

NARRATOR      Where did the money go?  Marge lost much of the family fortune investing in birth control products.
MARGE             I learned something -- when people reach for their diaphragm, they don't want to see my picture. (holds up a diaphragm with a stern-looking picture of herself on it. Hmm)
A Tale of Two Springfields (Season 12)
THE ONE WHERE After an argument over telephone numbers, Homer leads the common townspeople to break away and form New Springfield, dividing the town into two. The rivalry develops, and New Springfield go so far as to block Olde Springfield's river – but it turns out there's gold in the river, and the rich get slightly richer.

"Evian" was cut! No advertising allowed on Sky... Since when?!

BROCKMAN     With the money made from the gold, Old Springfield was able to buy the Evian water factory and fly it over here from France.
(news footage shows several helicopters lowering a factory into place on the old riverbed)
HOMER             (groans)
BROCKMAN     Thanks, Mr. Simpson. Because of you, we're all taking golden showers! (offstage, we hear laughter) What?

[Source for lines - The Simpsons Archive]

CUTS BY CHANNEL 4, 2005-06
Channel 4 obtained the rights previously held by the BBC, and started showing The Simpsons in November 2004. It wasn't long before they, too, started making little inconsistent edits.

Bart Gets Famous (Season 5)
THE ONE WHERE Bart says "I didn't do it".

Bart hears Krusty angrily demanding a Danish pastry, so goes off to find one for him. Kent Brockman is preparing his newscast for that evening:
BROCKMAN        (reading his notes to himself) Tragic news tonight... 120 dead in a tidal wave in Kuala Lala ... (struggling) ...pure.  Kuala Lum -- per... (crosses it out) France!
(Bart runs up to Kent's desk and steals the danish on it)
BART                      Yoink!
(Brockman looks up, surprised. He notices his danish is missing, and he gasps.)

Minutes later, the news programme begins. Brockman sits at his news desk:
BROCKMAN          Yeah. I know I'm on. But I don't care. I 
don't read the news until I get my danish. Go ahead, try to find a replacement. 
(There are running footsteps... Chespirito (Bumblebee Man) runs over and shoves him aside)
CHESPIRITO     (posh voice) A powerful tidal wave in Kuala Lumpur has killed 120 people. (jumps up and shouts) Ay, chihuahua! Whoa, whoa, whoa! (Falls backwards off chair)

The 'tidal wave' news, and the fact that an Asian country (Malaysia) was mentioned, caused it to bear a slight resemblance to the December 2004 natural disaster in the Indian Ocean, hence this cut. But things like this happen all the time, and these scenes didn't make light of them... they were just making fun of Kent Brockman.
The Last Temptation of Homer (Season 5)
THE ONE WHERE Homer becomes attracted to Mindy, a beautiful co-worker at the nuclear plant. When the two of them are sent to the Capital City energy convention together, he fears he might betray Marge.

At the convention, Homer and Mindy are the Springfield representatives at the nuclear-energy stand:
MAN 1      Thanks for poisoning the planet
, bastard! 
MINDY      Get bent! 
MAN 2      No more Chernobyl! 
HOMER    Go to hell!

However, when C4 showed this clip as part of Another Simpsons Clip Show (Season 6), they kept "bastard" in! No bastard consistency.
[Source for lines - The Simpsons Archive]

CUTS BY CHANNEL 4, 2007-12

More recently, Channel 4 predictably cut Season 9 episode Natural Born Kissers to smithereens, because of its implied comic nudity (the worst kind of nudity). Plus Moe's line:

MOE       Who cares what it is? Let's monoxide it!

And they removed a funny, and highly conspicuous, line from Simpson Tide (Season 9):

GRAMPA       My Homer is not a communist. He may be a liar, a pig, an idiot, a communist, but he is not a porn star!

And yet, in 2008, they failed to notice U2's "wankers" line and accidentally showed the uncut version of Trash of the Titans (Season 9). Bravo!

2009 to 2011 is kind of a grey area for me (see "Links" just below)...

In 2012, as reported by Melon Farmers, a T4 Sunday lunchtime screening of Homer Loves Flanders (Season 5), contained a stupid edit:

HOMER    "I want everyone to know that... (yells) this is Ned Flanders – my friend!"
LENNY    "What'd he say?"
CARL      "I dunno. Something about being gay."

There may be different rules on T4 on Sundays – that's where I saw Grampa's lost "porn star" line too.

Channel 4 apologized for censoring "gay". It seems the line was cut because of their trendy new "compliance" department. You wouldn't commission a television show by an inexperienced person unfamiliar with TV, so why on earth was this person given control of a Simpsons episode?!


2009 Digital Spy forum thread concerning Channel 4 and all which they censor

A 2008 Eurogamer thread with four pages of C4 cuts, beginning with The Two Mrs. Nahasapeemapetilons (Season 9)

And SimpsonCrazy has a list of most of the Simpsons censorship up to the present day.


The Cartridge Family (Season 9)
In 1997, Sky One banned this episode because it involves characters buying guns and shooting inanimate objects with them. But Sky still saw fit to put it on video (Too Hot For TV!) and charge us to see it. How very suspicious.

Anyway, BBC2 showed the episode uncut at 6pm on numerous occasions, so that's hopefully the end of that.
But there have been two more episodes that were banned in some way.


The City of New York versus Homer Simpson (Season 9)

This episode was made in 1997. Barney drunkenly drives Homer's car to New York and parks it at the World Trade Center, so Homer must get it back, travelling there with the rest of the Simpson family.

The episode has been shown in syndication in the US, cutting references to the towers, and RTÉ Network 2 in Ireland showed it uncut within a few years (mentioning that the episode was made before the attacks at the beginning of the programme). RTÉ, in fact, apparently leave The Simpsons uncut, bad language and all. An attitude I wish British broadcasters would take.

The BBC gained the rights to the episode around 2001, but it was never shown on BBC Two. When Sky regained the rights to Season 9 episodes, it showed NY vs Homer on Sky One on Sunday 7 August 2005, cutting most references to the towers.

Channel 4 then gained the rights, first screening the episode on 7 October 2007. C4 made some of their typical naughty-word cuts, namely "pimp":

MARGE   (to Homer) Of course you'll have a bad impression of New York if you only focus on the pimps and Chuds.
(a reference to the film

and Homer's prolonged sighs of relief when he reaches the public toilet at the top of the skyscraper were also censored. (The relative subtlety of the scene, and the fact that everybody pees, apparently didn't strike anyone at Channel 4)

More than anything, the scene where three World Trade employees yell at each other across the towers was bound to theoretically cause pretend offence to some non-existent potential viewer. So the scene was cut from Channel 4's broadcast – all that remains is Homer's short conversation with one of the men from the WTC, who shouts advice from his window.

It saddens me that Simpsons contributor Bill Oakley called the scene "regrettable". It isn't – any joke could appear insensitive tomorrow if something tragic happens. It makes me feel better to see this, and to know there was a more confident time when New York and stressed-out New Yorkers could be laughed-about in this way. Very few people could fail to realise that this was made before 2001, and is not a justification of terrorist attacks – and yet this opinion is the one which holds sway!

You can't get rid of this joke any more than you can get rid of the rest of The Simpsons, and I know the channels concerned would hate to lose the ratings and revenue that the show brings. So it would be nice to see it treated with more respect.

Links: Peel Futurama debate over whether this episode should be shown
Simpsons Wiki article about the New York episode
Wikipedia article about the episode

Weekend at Burnsie's (Season 13)
Finally, Sky One restricted Weekend At Burnsie's to after the watershed - it was first shown at 21:00 on Sunday 6 October 2002.

Channel 4 banned the episode entirely, because they're crap.

Like The Cartridge Family, this episode deals with a contentious political issue – in this case medical cannabis, which Homer takes after getting his eyes pecked by birds. Anyway, I guess there were one too many "stoner" references in the episode, which woke our televisual moral guardians from their weed-addled haze.

It's good that Sky didn't ban it entirely, but I bet we're the only country that banned it at all!

Link: Digital Spy forum – thread begun just after Sky One premiered the episode
The Grow Report criticise C4, and if anybody can be trusted on this subject, they can

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