The Simpsons: "Some Enchanted Evening" (partially found original pilot of animated series; 1989-1990)
|Screenshot of the five minute clip|
The animated TV series The Simpsons needs no introduction. With more than 500 episodes, a large fanbase, and a number of awards, the show will always be remembered as a pinnacle of comedy.
But very few fans of the show, even devout ones, are aware that a pilot for this show exists.
Matt Groening, the show's creator, started his work by producing a series of comics called Life in Hell, which ran from 1976 until 2012. In the mid to late 1980s, Tracy Ullman, who was a fan of the characters, asked Groening to include them as skits in her show, which debuted in 1987 and ran until 1990. Groening, fearful of copyright issues, decided instead to create an entirely new cast of characters, which became The Simpsons.
Homer, Lisa, and Marge were all named after his family members, with Bart being an anagram for the word "brat". After the skits got good reception, they were spun off into a separate half-hour series. The first produced episode for the series was "Some Enchanted Evening". The plot of the episode revolves around Homer and Marge taking a night out and hiring a babysitter to look after Bart and Lisa. It turns out that this babysitter is a notorious thief, and begins robbing the family. This episode originally suffered various problems before finally airing.
The animation for the original episode was criticized heavily, with James L. Brooks's reaction being, "This is shit." However, the episode was later remade and then aired on May 13, 1990 as the last episode of the first season, with "Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire", the eighth episode produced, becoming the first aired episode instead. As of now, only a five minute clip of the pilot has resurfaced onto the Internet due to it being included as a bonus feature on the season 1 DVD.