It's done. It's like an old, blind dog walking around the house trying to find food. Yeah, you feel sentimental about it, and it's fun to watch on occasion. But for the most part, you wish you could put it out of its misery.
The Simpsons is like that dog. There's nothing more we can do for it. In 2011, the show should be provided an opportunity to say goodbye to all of us and exit gracefully after a lifespan of more than 20 years.
Some critics lament the show's decline by discussing touching moments and praising its early episodes. Do you recall the earliest episodes? They were terrible, precisely because of those touching lessons. It began unfunny, and it will probably end unfunny. That's the way things usually go: ashes to ashes, diapers to diapers.
The show was at its best during its (hopefully) middle years of nonsense and satire. If you require cartoon comedy that is actually funny, you won't find it coming from the mouths of The Simpsons or on American Dad--turn to South Park and Family Guy. Homer's odyssey was great, but he's reached the end of his journey. Accept it. Move on.
A recent episode, obscurely yet somehow predictably titled "Donnie Fatso," featured a depiction of the baby Jesus as a monkey--or perhaps the converse--in its opening sequence.
Perhaps they're trying to resurrect edginess, but the whole thing just seemed unaccountably lazy. Jesus had nothing in common with monkeys, who are notoriously incompetent carpenters.
There are still a few fresh comedy moments to be had: Homer is fined for "telling it like it is," and Lenny tells him that even though it's only the first day of the year, it's already Homer's annus horribilis. "My resolution was to learn Latin," Lenny says.
Perhaps the old dog has sniffed upon some sort of amino-acid-injected bowl of youth. Maybe if we give it one more season, The Simpsons will spring back with a renewed energy. Or maybe it's time to say goodbye for good.