The twelfth season of the American animated television series The Simpsons originally aired between November 2000 and May 2001. It began on Wednesday, November 1, 2000 with "Treehouse of Horror XI". The season contains four hold-over episodes from the season 11 (BABF) production line. The showrunner for the twelfth production season was Mike Scully. The season won and was nominated for numerous awards including two Primetime Emmy Awards wins and an Annie Award. Season 12 was released on DVD in Region 1 on August 18, 2009, Region 2 on September 28, 2009, and Region 4 on September 2, 2009.
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||21|
|Original release||November 1, 2000 –|
May 20, 2001
The season's executive producer was once again Mike Scully, in his last season as executive producer, while it was produced by Gracie Films and 20th Century Fox Television. He later returned to the series in season fourteen as a writer and executive producer for the episode "How I Spent My Strummer Vacation". Mike Scully has stated his goal during his tenure was to "not wreck the show".
Don Payne, John Frink and Bob Bendetson began writing for the series, while Larry Doyle, Julie Thacker and Tom Martin left following the completion of this season. Rob LaZebnik received his first sole writing credit for the episode "Homer vs. Dignity". LaZebnik would not get a writing credit for another episode until the 20th season, where he was credited for writing "Father Knows Worst". Shaun Cashman received his sole directing credit on the series this season (for the 250th episode "A Tale of Two Springfields"), while Neil Affleck received his final directorial credit (also for "Homer vs. Dignity"). Tom Gammill and Max Pross have been promoted to produce this season. As of 2009, Gammill & Pross are still credited as such, along with David Mirkin. Mike Reiss (Al Jean's former writing partner) returned to the writing staff as a producer.
The season began with the annual Treehouse of Horror episode, beginning a practice of starting the season with the episodes, as well as airing the episodes shortly after Halloween in November, due to Fox's coverage of the World Series. This season brought back Sideshow Bob, who had not been seen since the eighth-season episode "Brother from Another Series". Ian Maxtone-Graham's episode "Tennis the Menace" became the second episode of the series to be animated using digital ink and paint, which had not been used since the season seven episode "Radioactive Man" and would not be used again (this time on a permanent basis) until the 14th season. The season would also have four episodes that would air the following season.
The twelfth season has received mostly positive reviews from critics. Matt Haigh of Den of Geek said that "The bad episodes are never really terrible, it's more that they're a bit boring and will most likely have you yawning 10 minutes in. With this in mind, season 12 ends up being very much a 50/50 affair". Nancy Basile gave a list of "Must See TV" episodes and "Not So Must See TV" episodes — with more of the former.
"HOMR" was nominated for various awards. Al Jean received a nomination for Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour) the eleventh win for the series. Another Primetime Emmy Award nomination is for Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Series. Another win for "HOMR" is an Annie Award for Outstanding Writing in an Animated Television Production. Other Primetime Emmy Awards nominations include Hank Azaria for "Worst Episode Ever". Lisa Simpson also won a Board of Directors Ongoing Commitment Award. The show also won at the 2002 Kids' Choice Awards.
The season ranked 21st in the seasonal ratings with an average of 14.7 million viewers an episode, rising 6% from last season.
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Storyboard by||Original air date||Prod.|
|249||1||"Treehouse of Horror XI"||Matthew Nastuk||Rob LaZebnik|
John Frink &
|November 1, 2000||BABF21||13.2|
|This year's Halloween story sees The Simpsons as "The Munsters" (with everyone except Lisa getting killed), Homer as a wandering spirit on the hunt for a good deed in "G-G-Ghost D-D-Dad," Bart and Lisa as peasants in a fairy tale forest in "Scary Tales Can Come True," and Lisa inadvertently dooming mankind by rescuing a dolphin in "Night of the Dolphin."|
|250||2||"A Tale of Two Springfields"||Shaun Cashman||John Swartzwelder||Erik Moxcey,|
Kevin O'Brien &
|November 5, 2000||BABF20||16.2|
While calling Animal Control over a badger taking residence in Santa's Little Helper's doghouse, Homer discovers that Springfield has two different area codes–and ends up leading a revolt that splits the town in two.|
Guest star: The Who
|251||3||"Insane Clown Poppy"||Bob Anderson||John Frink &|
Bob Anderson &
|November 12, 2000||BABF17||16.4|
Krusty takes parenting lessons from Homer when, during an outdoor book fair, a girl tells Krusty that she is his long-lost daughter from a one-night stand with a female soldier who fought during the first Gulf War.|
Guest star: Drew Barrymore, Amy Tan, Stephen King, John Updike, Joe Mantegna and Jay Mohr (credited as the voice of Christopher Walken)
|252||4||"Lisa the Tree Hugger"||Steven Dean Moore||Matt Selman||Orlando Baeza,|
Greg Lovell &
|November 19, 2000||CABF01||14.9|
Lisa falls for the teenaged leader of a militant environmentalist group and tries to impress him by living in Springfield's oldest tree in order to keep it from being cut down.|
Guest star: Joshua Jackson
|253||5||"Homer vs. Dignity"||Neil Affleck||Rob LaZebnik||Neil Affleck,|
John Mathot &
|November 26, 2000||CABF04||15|
When the Simpsons once again have financial problems, Mr. Burns pays Homer to play pranks on others and humiliate himself in public. Meanwhile, Smithers creates a Malibu Stacy-themed musical.|
Guest star: Leeza Gibbons
|254||6||"The Computer Wore Menace Shoes"||Mark Kirkland||John Swartzwelder||Shawna Cha-Gallego,|
Jeff Myers &
|December 3, 2000||CABF02||15.6|
Homer decides to buy a computer after turning up at the plant to find that it is closed, and that, not having a computer, he did not receive the e-mail telling the workers. He then creates his own website and it eventually gains attention when he posts gossip. Homer dubs himself as "Mr. X" to conceal his identity. When he reveals that he is Mr. X, he becomes drugged into a mysterious island where people who know too much are imprisoned after Homer starts writing conspiracy theories such as flu shots causing increased holiday spending.|
Guest star: Patrick McGoohan
|255||7||"The Great Money Caper"||Michael Polcino||Carolyn Omine||Orlando Baeza,|
Grant Lee &
|December 10, 2000||CABF03||16.8|
Homer and Bart become father–son con artists (after Bart is given money out of pity when Homer decided to not take him home), but soon find that they are the ones being had.|
Guest star: Edward Norton
|256||8||"Skinner's Sense of Snow"||Lance Kramer||Tim Long||Brad Ableson,|
Greg Lovell &
|December 17, 2000||CABF06||15.9|
|A snowstorm traps the students of Springfield Elementary inside, with them overthrowing Principal Skinner when he uses his Army skills to control them. Meanwhile, Ned temporarily redeems himself to help Homer rescue the children–using his car.|
|257||9||"HOMR"||Mike B. Anderson||Al Jean||Glen Wuthrich,|
Steve Markowski &
|January 7, 2001||BABF22||18.5|
|While working as a human guinea pig (to pay off the family's lost savings after making a bad investment), Homer discovers the root cause of his subnormal intelligence: a crayon that was lodged in his brain ever since he was a boy. He decides to have it removed to increase his IQ, but discovers that being smart does not necessarily equal being happy.|
|258||10||"Pokey Mom"||Bob Anderson||Tom Martin||Bob Anderson,|
Orlando Baeza &
|January 14, 2001||CABF05||15|
Marge tries to rehabilitate a convict with remarkable artistic talent. Meanwhile, Homer uses a trash can to fix people's spines.|
Guest star: Michael Keaton, Charles Napier, Robert Schimmel and Bruce Vilanch
|259||11||"Worst Episode Ever"||Matthew Nastuk||Larry Doyle||Orlando Baeza,|
Greg Lovell &
|February 4, 2001||CABF08||18.5|
Bart and Milhouse are banned from The Android Dungeon after stopping Comic Book Guy from buying a box of priceless Star Wars memorabilia for $5, but are hired as his replacements when Comic Book Guy has a heart attack and is advised to leave his job in order to make friends.|
Guest star: Tom Savini
|260||12||"Tennis the Menace"||Jen Kamerman||Ian Maxtone-Graham||Orlando Baeza,|
John Mathot &
|February 11, 2001||CABF07||14|
While making funeral arrangements for Grampa's future, the funeral planner pitches the idea of a mausoleum that uses the same amount of cement as a full-sized tennis court. This prompts Homer to instead build a tennis court in his backyard, initially mistaking the sport for "Foxy Boxing". The tennis court makes Marge and Homer popular in town, but it turns out that this is only because Homer's inferior tennis ability makes them an easy target. Bart on the other hand, shines as a natural.|
Guest star: Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras, Venus Williams and Serena Williams
|261||13||"Day of the Jackanapes"||Michael Marcantel||Al Jean||Martin Archer,|
Greg Lovell &
|February 18, 2001||CABF10||15.4|
Krusty announces his retirement due to interference from network executives and the growing popularity of the big-money game show "Me Wantee", but when Krusty reveals to Sideshow Bob that all of the episodes featuring him have been erased, Sideshow Bob uses Krusty's biggest fan (Bart) to murder him during Krusty's farewell show.|
Guest star: Kelsey Grammer and Gary Coleman
|262||14||"New Kids on the Blecch"||Steven Dean Moore||Tim Long||Glen Wuthrich,|
Greg Lovell &
|February 25, 2001||CABF12||18.1|
A music producer selects Bart, Nelson, Milhouse and Ralph to be members of the next hit boy band, who record subliminal songs about joining the Navy.|
Guest star: 'N Sync
|263||15||"Hungry, Hungry Homer"||Nancy Kruse||John Swartzwelder||Glen Wuthrich,|
Scott Alberts &
|March 4, 2001||CABF09||17.6|
Homer becomes a Good Samaritan after discovering the simple joys of helping people in need–which is put to the test when he goes on a hunger strike after the owner of the Springfield Isotopes attempts to discredit him when Homer stumbles on his plot to discreetly move the team to Albuquerque, New Mexico.|
Guest star: Stacy Keach
|264||16||"Bye Bye Nerdie"||Lauren MacMullan||John Frink &|
Christian Roman &
|March 11, 2001||CABF11||16.1|
When Lisa becomes the target of a female bully, Lisa discovers a scientific reason as to why bullies pick on nerds. Meanwhile, Homer goes into the baby-proofing business, which is threatening the businesses of pediatricians and greeting card salesmen.|
Guest star: Kathy Griffin
|265||17||"Simpson Safari"||Mark Kirkland||John Swartzwelder||Brad Ableson,|
Christian Roman &
|April 1, 2001||CABF13||13.3|
|When the Simpsons run out of food thanks to a bag boy strike (caused by Homer), the family finds an old box of animal crackers with a sweepstakes that sends The Simpsons to Africa.|
|266||18||"Trilogy of Error"||Mike B. Anderson||Matt Selman||Brad Ableson|
|April 29, 2001||CABF14||14.4|
Homer's rush to the hospital to reattach his thumb, Lisa's rush to school to win the science fair, and Bart's run-in with an illegal fireworks scheme are interconnected in a parody of Go and Run Lola Run.|
Guest star: Frankie Muniz
|267||19||"I'm Goin' to Praiseland"||Chuck Sheetz||Julie Thacker Scully||John Mathot,|
Greg Lovell &
|May 6, 2001||CABF15||13.1|
After finding a sketchbook belonging to his late wife Maude, Ned Flanders opens a Bible-themed amusement park to honor her memory.|
Guest star: Shawn Colvin
|268||20||"Children of a Lesser Clod"||Michael Polcino||Al Jean||Orlando Baeza,|
Glen Wuthrich &
|May 13, 2001||CABF16||13.8|
|After injuring his knee during a basketball game, Homer begins taking care of the neighborhood kids to cure his boredom during his recovery from surgery, prompting jealousy from Bart and Lisa, who feel that Homer is giving the kids the attention they never had.|
|269||21||"Simpsons Tall Tales"||Bob Anderson||John Frink &|
|May 20, 2001||CABF17||13.4|
The DVD boxset for season twelve was released by 20th Century Fox in the United States and Canada on Tuesday, August 18, 2009, eight years after it had completed broadcast on television. As well as every episode from the season, the DVD release feature bonus material including deleted scenes, animatics, and commentaries for every episode. The boxart features Comic Book Guy, and a special limited edition "embossed head case" package was also released.
|...The Complete Twelfth Season...|
|Set Details||Special Features|
|Region 1||Region 2||Region 4|
|Tuesday, August 18, 2009||Monday, September 28, 2009||Wednesday, September 2, 2009|
- "Electric Journeys | BBC World Service". Bbc.co.uk. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- "The Simpsons Season 12 DVD review". Den of Geek. October 1, 2009. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- ""The Simpsons" Season 12 Review". Animatedtv.about.com. October 6, 2010. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- White, Cindy. "The Simpsons: The Complete Twelfth Season DVD Review". IGN. Retrieved November 30, 2021.
- "Primetime Emmy® Award Database". Emmys.com. Archived from the original on October 14, 2011. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- "Legacy - 29th Annual". Annie Awards. Archived from the original on May 9, 2008. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- Dutka, Elaine (August 14, 2001). "Morning Report". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 25, 2010.
- "Lisa Simpson animates environmental awards". USA Today. November 15, 2001. Retrieved November 30, 2021.
- "Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards 2011". Nick.com. Archived from the original on November 3, 2011. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- "The Bitter End". Entertainment Weekly. June 1, 2001. Retrieved November 30, 2021.
- "Release Date Finally Revealed for the Long-Awaited 12th Season DVDs!". TVShowsOnDVD. May 20, 2009.
- "Release Date For Season 12 on Amazon.co.uk!". Amazon. May 20, 2009. Retrieved May 20, 2009.
- "Simpsons, The — The 12th Season: Collector's Edition (4 Disc Box Set) @ EzyDVD". EzyDVD. May 26, 2009. Retrieved May 26, 2009.
- Season 12 at The Simpsons.com