At a Comic-Con panel on Saturday, “The Simpsons” creators Matt Groening and Al Jean answered questions from fans, plugged a DVD release and made a bunch of political news.
When asked by an audience member if there was anyone that the celebrity-cameo-friendly show had turned down, Jean replied: “Let’s just say he’s the president of the United States.”
Trump wasn’t the only political roastee during the panel. Groening and Jean also revealed that the Fox network asked them to ease up on Fox News a joke that they were “not racist, but No. 1 with racists.”
“Then Bill O’Reilly called us pinheads and look what happened,” said Groening, referring to the anchor’s disappearance in a cloud of scandal.
He then led the audience in chanting “Lock him up!” — a spin on the line that defrocked Trump national security adviser Mike Flynn used against Hillary Clinton at the Republican National Convention and that became a staple of Trump rallies.
Over the past few seasons, “The Simpsons” has attracted some reknown for predicting Trump’s ascent to the presidency sixteen years before it happened. In an 2000 episode titled “Bart to the Future,” an adult Lisa Simpson took over the presidency from Trump and had to fix the mess of a country he left behind.
At the time, writer Dan Greaney said it was an absurdist joke. “He seemed kind of lovable in the old days, in a blowhard way,” said Greaney. But after Trump began campaigning for president, “I see that in a much darker way,” the writer said.
The show has gone that direction in addressing the Trump presidency, bringing in disgraced President Richard Nixon for a cameo and showed Trump prepping for the job by reading “The Little Book of Big Bombs” and “Killing a Good Thing,” while press secretary Sean Spicer swung from a noose in the press briefing room.
— The Simpsons (@TheSimpsons) April 26, 2017
“The Simpsons” will begin its 29th season on Oct. 1.