First America was sent into a tailspin as nearly 8 percent of the population called in sick to watch The Simpsons marathon on FXX. But we were able to recover, because the world can manage without a few baristas for a weekend. (The long-term effects, however, remain unknown.)
But what if the people who actually make the stuff that we work three jobs to be able to make the minimum payments for also stopped working to binge on The Simpsons? That apocalyptic possibility is now one step closer to reality, as online streaming service Sohu Video prepares to bring the show to China for the first time. Officially, anyway. The show has never aired in The People’s Republic, but if people can get around the Chinese government’s attempts to pretend Tiananmen Square never happened, they can download “Marge Vs. The Monorail.”
Sohu has signed a multi-year deal with 20th Century Fox that gives it the right to stream The Simpsons up to and including the show’s upcoming 26th season. In a departure from Fox’s usual strategy of hiring local talent to voice Homer, Bart, and the gang, The Simpsons will be subtitled in Mandarin for Chinese audiences. It’s not clear how many of the show’s 500+ episodes will actually stream in China, but we assume the one making fun of Chairman Mao won’t be among them.