Unless you’ve been living on another planet The Simpsons characters are probably lodged in your brain, right beside your own dear Mom and Dad. Aside from the headlining family themselves, there’s Ned Flanders, Moe, Patty and Selma, Montgomery Burns and, of course, Monty’s loyal assistant, Waylon Smithers. His dedication and devotion to, and unrequited love for, his boss and the crap he got back has been a running gag over the years and it’s worked. Until now.
In many ways, Smithers represented the stereotype of a closeted gay man, with smart-ass remarks made about his sexuality; but in Sunday’s episode, he finally came out to Burns. The two men were skydiving when Mr. Burns leaped, slipped through his parachute and was saved by a heroic Smithers.
Once on the ground, Waylon confessed his true feelings for Monty who reacted with characteristic disdain. After overhearing Smithers’ ragey song-and-dance number about “living half of my life living half of a life,” Homer, Lenny and Carl to take it upon themselves to
get Smithers laid do a little matchmaking. To a surprising degree of success.
Smithers soon found himself connecting with Julio and while it wasn’t happily ever after, seeing Waylon being treated like an equal after 27 seasons of watching him be Monty’s doormat was a nice change of pace. Though it wasn’t surprising that Smithers, hopeless romantic that he is, won’t ever get over Mr. Burns.
Smithers being acknowledged as a gay man might be met with shrugs because, well, we all already thought he had come out, right? But while the jokes will probably continue, they won’t be at Waylon’s expense. This time, he’ll be in on it.