Smithers Will Get His Long-Awaited Coming Out Moment On This Season Of The Simpsons

Photo: ©FOX BROADCASTING THE SIMPSONS
It's a hell of a time for gay rights. This summer, same-sex marriage became legal nationwide (despite the best efforts of a particularly stubborn Kentucky county clerk). The internationally beloved Pope Francis expressed an unprecedented level of openness towards the LGBT community and just this past January, the Mormon Church followed suit. And in the upcoming season of long-running comedy stalwart, The Simpsons, the long-closeted character of Waylon Smithers may finally come out to Mr. Burns.

"In Springfield now, most people know he’s gay, but obviously, Burns doesn’t. We deal with that in two episodes,” executive producer, Al Jean, told TVLine of the show's 27th season. "We actually do a lot with Smithers this year; He gets fed up with Burns not appreciating him and considers his options.”

Devoted Simpsons fans are, of course, well aware that the character of Smithers, voiced by actor Harry Shearer, has danced around clarifying his sexual orientation many times over the years. Smithers makes countless overt allusions and tongue-in-cheek double entendres concerning his homosexuality and hidden romantic love for Mr. Burns. (Just peruse the quotes featured on the character's IMDb page or one of many fan-created reference sites for a quick refresher on the hilarity of the ambiguously closeted personal assistant, should you like one.) And if that dance of denial — while hilarious — is truly about to come to an end, we say kudos to the writers and producers of the longest-running American sitcom. We can't wait to see how you play it. And if you need any tips on how he should come out, exactly, Ian McKellan has you covered.

We've reached out to FOX for further comment and will update with additional information if received.
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