The Simpsons (season 6)

The sixth season of the American animated television series The Simpsons originally aired on the Fox network between September 4, 1994, and May 21, 1995, and consists of 25 episodes. The Simpsons is an animated series about a working class family, which consists of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. The show is set in the fictional city of Springfield, and lampoons American culture, society, television and many aspects of the human condition.[1] Season 6 was the highest rated season of the series.[2]

Season of television series
Season of television series

The Simpsons
Season 6

Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 25
Release
Original network Fox
Original release September 4, 1994 (1994-09-04) 
May 21, 1995 (1995-05-21)
Season chronology
 Previous
Season 5
Next 
Season 7
List of episodes

The showrunner for the sixth production season was David Mirkin who executive-produced 23 episodes. Former showrunners Al Jean and Mike Reiss produced the remaining two; they produced the two episodes with the staff of The Critic, the show they left The Simpsons to create. This was done in order to relieve some of the stress The Simpsons writing staff endured, as they felt that producing 25 episodes in one season was too much. The episode “A Star Is Burns” caused some controversy among the staff with Matt Groening removing his name from the episode’s credits as he saw it as blatant advertising for The Critic, which Fox had picked up for a second season after being cancelled by ABC and with which Groening had no involvement. Fox moved The Simpsons back to its original Sunday night timeslot from season 1, having aired on Thursdays from season 2 through season 5. It has remained in this slot ever since. The sixth season won one Primetime Emmy Award (for the episode “Lisa’s Wedding“), and received three additional nominations. It also won the Annie Award for Best Animated Television Production.

The Complete Sixth Season DVD was released in the United States on August 16, 2005, September 28, 2005, in Australia, and October 17, 2005, in the United Kingdom. The set featured a plastic “clam-shell” Homer-head design and received many complaints. In the United States, the set contained a slip of paper informing purchasers how to request alternate packaging — which consisted of a case-sleeve in a similar style to the standard box design — for only a shipping and handling fee.

. . . The Simpsons (season 6) . . .

David Mirkin was showrunner for season six

David Mirkin served as showrunner and executive producer for season six, having worked in the same capacity on the previous season.[3] Due to Fox’s demand for 25 episodes for the season, which the writers felt was impossible to achieve, former showrunners Mike Reiss and Al Jean returned to produce two episodes (“A Star Is Burns” and ‘Round Springfield“) with the staff of their show The Critic, to relieve some of the stress on The Simpsons writing staff.[4][5]

David Cohen,[6]Jonathan Collier,[7]Jennifer Crittenden,[8]Brent Forrester,[9]Ken Keeler,[10]Bob Kushell,[11]David Sacks,[12]Mike Scully,[13]Joshua Sternin,[14] and Jennifer Ventimilia[14] all received their first writing credits during season six. Steven Dean Moore and Swinton O. Scott III received their first directing credit.[15][16] Other credited writers included Greg Daniels, Dan McGrath, Bill Oakley, John Swartzwelder, Jon Vitti and Josh Weinstein.[17] Other directors included Bob Anderson, Wes Archer, Susie Dietter, Mark Kirkland, Jeffrey Lynch, Jim Reardon and David Silverman.[17]

The main cast consisted of Dan Castellaneta (Homer Simpson, Grampa Simpson, Krusty the Clown, among others), Julie Kavner (Marge Simpson, Patty and Selma Bouvier), Nancy Cartwright (Bart Simpson, Ralph Wiggum, Nelson Muntz, among others), Yeardley Smith (Lisa Simpson), Hank Azaria (Moe Szyslak, Apu, Chief Wiggum, among others) and Harry Shearer (Ned Flanders, Mr. Burns, Principal Skinner, among others).[18] Other cast members included Doris Grau (Lunchlady Doris), Pamela Hayden (Milhouse Van Houten, among others), Tress MacNeille (Agnes Skinner, among others), Maggie Roswell (Maude Flanders, among others), Russi Taylor (Martin Prince, among others) and Marcia Wallace (Edna Krabappel).[19] Guest stars included Anne Bancroft, Mel Brooks, Kelsey Grammer, Phil Hartman, Larry King, Susan Sarandon, Patrick Stewart, Meryl Streep and Winona Ryder.[17]

The season’s first two episodes, “Bart of Darkness” and “Lisa’s Rival“, were held over from the previous season, as production was delayed because of the 1994 Northridge earthquake.[20][21] “A Star Is Burns” caused some controversy among the staff with series creator Matt Groening removing his name from the episode’s credits as he saw it as blatant advertising for The Critic, which had moved from ABC to Fox for its second season and was scheduled to follow The Simpsons.[22] The season finale “Who Shot Mr. Burns?” (which aired in two parts, the second acting as the following season’s premiere) came from Groening, who had wanted to do an episode in which Mr. Burns was shot, which could be used as a publicity stunt.[23] The writers decided to write the episode in two parts with a mystery that could be used in a contest.[24] It was important for them to design a mystery that had clues, took advantage of freeze frame technology, and was structured around one character who seemed the obvious culprit.[24]

During the production of the season, Groening and Brooks pitched a live-action spin-off series centered on Krusty the Clown (expected to be portrayed by Dan Castellaneta) entitled Krusty (although they began planning the series since 1992).[25] Groening and Michael Weithorn wrote a pilot episode where Krusty moved to Los Angeles and got his own talk show. A recurring joke throughout the script was that Krusty lived in a house on wooden stilts which were continuously being gnawed by beavers. Eventually, the contract negotiations fell apart and Groening decided to stop work on the project.[26]

. . . The Simpsons (season 6) . . .

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. . . The Simpsons (season 6) . . .

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