The Simpsons is one of the most popular and the longest-running American sitcoms today. And the makers are finally making some revolutionary but important changes.
The animated show will no longer have a white actor voice any of the non-white characters. As you guessed, the change came with Apu.
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon is a recurring character in the animated TV series. He is an Indian-American immigrant proprietor who runs a popular convenience store in Springfield.
Although best known for his catchphrase, "Thank you, come again," Apu had drawn attention outside the world of The Simpsons because of the white voice actor Hank Azaria who lent his voice for Apu.
Things escalated after comedian and ardent The Simpsons follower Hari Kondabolu made a documentary called The Problem With Apu in 2017. It had shown how the representation of South Asians in the show changed when a South Asian character was made and voiced by white people.
The makers of the sitcom did not take the criticism well.
They tried to address the issue and rubbed the viewers the wrong way. In a 2018 episode, Lisa can be heard saying, "Something that started decades ago and was applauded and inoffensive is now politically incorrect. What can you do?"
She then goes on to look at a picture of Apu that featured Bart's catchphrase "Don't have a cow!" To this Marge says, "Some things will be dealt with at a later date," and Lisa replies, "If at all."
It was in early 2020 that Azaria took the decision of standing aside from playing Apu. speaking to Slash film, the actor said, “All we know there is I won’t be doing the voice anymore, unless there’s someway to transition it or something”.