As 700th ‘Simpsons’ episode airs, voice of Lisa looks back on show’s long run

When “The Simpsons” first went on the air in 1989, Blockbuster Video, AOL and beepers were a thing. Now, the Emmy Award-winning animated series just hit an amazing milestone.

“The Simpsons” are the Energizer bunny of TV, and with Sunday night’s show, they hit a magic mark: 700 episodes.

Al Jean, showrunner, “The Simpsons”: “‘Manger Things.’ It’s a Christmas episode in March, because we thought the world could use two Christmases this year, and it’s more of a warm episode set in the past with little secret Easter eggs for Simpsons fans. We see a secret that Homer and Flanders share we never knew, and a secret room in the Simpsons house that you’ve never been in, but you’ve seen every week.”

Like it wasn’t enough “The Simpsons” is the longest-running primetime scripted series ever. Fox is already renewing the comedy for a 33rd and 34th season.

People are growing up with this show.

Al Jean: “The thing that means the very most to me about the show is, I’ll go to Comic-Con or somewhere, and a guy will come up and go, ‘I just want to tell you, when I was a kid’ — the parents are splitting up or something — ‘and ‘The Simpsons’ cheered me up,’ and they really mean it. And, you know, that just makes you feel so good.”

Yeardley Smith, voice of Lisa Simpson: “I was happy the show went past five seasons, and I love my character. I love that girl. I love her like she’s a living, breathing, three-dimensional human being with blood coursing through her veins, and so, this job can never get old for me.”

Yeardley Smith has been the voice of Lisa Simpson since 1987, and she knows exactly when she realized she was part of something big.

Yeardley Smith: “I remember when we went to a half hour, and we hit so big for those first 13 episodes, ’cause we were a midseason replacement, and it was so unexpected, and then all of this merchandise came out.”

Seven hundred episodes could be just the start. “Simpsons” creator Matt Groening says there’s no end in sight.

Copyright 2021 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.