Last night, every Simpsons fan was rocked by the news that, after 26 storied years, Harry Shearer is leaving The Simpsons. Shearer has voiced many characters, most notably Ned Flanders, Mr. Burns, Principal Skinner, Waylon Smithers, and Dr. Hibbert.
So, should the show carry on without one of their major cast members? Absolutely not! Here are five reasons why continuing The Simpsons without Harry Shearer is an utterly terrible idea…
1. We’ll Lose Homer’s Relationship With Flanders
This one hits especially close to home when you consider that the most recent episode focused specifically on Homer’s fractured relationship with his next door neighborino. In that episode, Homer admits that he’s bullied Flanders over the years, and he begs for his forgiveness. While that scene was surprisingly powerful for a late-period Simpsons episode, it’s not the first time their relationship was touched upon. In “Homer Loves Flanders,” Ned finds out just how annoying Homer can be. In “Hurricane Neddy,” Homer gets Ned to admit that he hates his parents. In “Home Away From Homer,” Homer upsets Ned so much that he finally decides to move away from him, only for Homer to beg him to come back when he misses him. Quite simply, a lot of great episodes and emotional moments have come from this relationship, and going on without it would just be sad.