When any service first launches, there are always weird issues, glitches, and mistakes. When Disney+ bowed back in November, one complaint was more forcefully made than others: The first several seasons of The Simpsons were not available in their original aspect ratio. Disney+ top brass were quick to say the problem would be fixed, but they weren’t slow to actually fix it. Now, as per Variety, they’ve released a date when the switch will take place: May 28, i.e., next week.
The casual plebeian may not think aspect ratios are too wonky to care about; after how many households still have motion smoothing turned on? But complaints about The Simpsons being shown in the wrong shape were about more than mere purity. For its first 19 seasons, and part of 20 — up until 2009 —were designed for old-timey square-shaped televisions. The versions on Disney+ cropped them to fit modern widescreen sets. And by doing so, the censors wound up messing up or even completely eliminating untold visual jokes.
So huzzah! In a week as of this writing, you’ll be able to actually see the “Old Man Yells at Cloud” headline in the Season 13 episode “The Old Man and the Key.” Meanwhile, the long-running show just concluded its 31st season, with no end in sight.