Apu should evolve, not be killed off.

28 years ago the rules were different, but the best way to address historic racism is not to eject the character...

There has been speculation this week about whether Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, much-loved Kwik-E-Mart owner should be killed off in The Simpsons due to racial stereotyping.

Yes, he has been the victim of such and the documentary The Problem with Apu by US comedian Hari Kondabolu raises important questions.

“I think the documentary made some really interesting points and gave us a lot to think about and we really are thinking about it,” star Hank Azaria told TMZ.

“Definitely anybody that was hurt or offended by it, or by any character or vocal performance, it’s really upsetting that it was offensive or hurtful to anybody.

“I think it’s an important conversation worth having. We’re still thinking about it. It’s a lot to digest.”

28 years ago, when the series began, the rules of comedy differed to those of today.

But while some articles tease Apu may go the way of Maude Flanders, it’s hardly the best way forward.

While the rules of sitcom decree that our characters never learn (exhibit A: Homer Simpson), Apu is of much more value to the writers and audience by staying and evolving in a modern view.

As Hari Kondabolu said on social media: “Please do NOT remove Apu from The Simpsons. Killing him is lazy writing & an insult to the show’s legacy. Let him be upwardly mobile & own multiple Qwik E Marts. Let his kids talk. Plots have been repeating for years & tweaks provide tons of new stories.”

Springfield loves Apu.

7 Responses

  1. What I think is overlooked is that Apu in the show is actually inclusive. Yes he’s got stereotypes, yes it sucks for kids made fun of because of Apu. However, he is no different than any other character or stereotype on the show.
    The real question is, “at what point would a character like Apu not be offensive?” The show is full of stereotypes deemed by many to not be offensive or the same.

  2. I always remember the line in an old musical type episode: “for no reason at all, here is Apu….”

    Seriously – completely agree character should evolve. I actually know people like Apu – they laugh at Apu, not get offended.

  3. We’ve lost the ability as a society to hold a mirror up to ourselves and have a laugh. We’re all becoming too precious and easily offended. There will come a time when bald, beer swilling fatty boombas take offence to being likened to Homer Simpson and demand the series be axed.

  4. Can’t we just put the show out of it’s misery and end it? I absolutely love The Simpsons, I even have it on series link on Foxtel so I can watch an episode whenever I want. But the series link will be cancelled the moment it gets to season 13. I just can’t watch episodes beyond that. I foolishly watched a special hour long episode which aired last year, and I couldn’t believe how terrible it was (Mr Burns losing his money to some rapper).

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