After 30 years on FOX, “The Simpsons” seem to have skewered just about everyone and everything at some point or another.
Add all of upstate New York to the list.
During Sunday’s episode, Homer Simpson delivered a scathing parody of Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” that focused on upstate’s ills.
The song roasted cities and towns big (Buffalo, Rochester) and small (Niskayuna, Oriskany) as well as some of their longstanding institutions, including the Anchor Bar and Kodak.
The episode started with the Simpson family traveling to Niagara Falls to spend some soon-to-expire credit card points.
Or, as Homer put it: “We’re headed to the one place that can never decline because it was never that great: Upstate New York.”
I can’t believe this actually happened. #UpstateAmerica#TheSimpsonspic.twitter.com/dV4BWVyayG
He quickly transitioned into the song parody, which, uh, didn’t hold back.
“Start watchin’ Fox News; Stop watchin’ your weight
There is no fancy part of it — upstate New York.
They’re fond of their booze; Hot wing sauce is great
I’m gonna clog my heart in it — upstate New York.”
As Homer sang, he and his family were shown traveling through about a dozen upstate locales.
Homer was shown at a lightly attended Buffalo Bills game, eating wings with a state trooper at the Anchor Bar, traveling past a declining population counter in Utica, becoming the mayor of Oriskany and — perhaps most brutally — driving past a shut-down Kodak plant as people snapped selfies on their phones outside.
“The Kodak plant closed; But I’m a-longin’ to say
And go on disability in upstate New York,” he sang.
Longtime “Simpsons”writer and producer Mike Reiss teased the episode during an February appearance at the University at Albany, warning the audience that the mocking parody was on its way.
Rich Azzopardi, a spokesman for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, dismissed the upstate jokes as a bunch of “dumb cheap shots” in a statement that included a couple “Simpsons” deep cuts of its own.
“There always remains work to be done but — dumb cheap shots aside — facts are facts: jobs are up, unemployment is down, millennials are coming back and it’s clear that Poochie was an uncredited writer on that episode,” Azzopardi said. “However, I still want a Fighting Hellfish tattoo.”
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