Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Bart 'n' Banksy

Posted By on Wed, Oct 13, 2010 at 2:18 PM

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It’s a far cry, at least technically speaking, from climbing into the penguin pen at the London Zoo and painting the seven-foot-tall complaint, “We’re Bored of Fish.” But Banksy’s opening credits for The Simpsons retain much of that same spirit.

Aired this past Sunday — and intermittently posted on YouTube when Rupert Murdoch’s not looking — the sequence is a mostly monochromatic depiction of bleak sweatshops in which child laborers dip animation cells into vats of radioactive fixer, live cats are churned up and turned into Bart Simpson dolls, and an anemic unicorn is chained to the wall so that its horn can be used to punch holes in DVDs. (Fun trivia fact: This is how most CDs and DVDs are actually made!)

It’s a pretty subversive message, which is what we’ve come to expect from the enigmatic British artist who perfectly synthesizes the pop-art ubiquity of Warhol, the street credibility of hip-hop and the Situationist genius of Guy Debord.

If you haven’t seen it yet, here’s an embedded video that may or may not be working by the time you read this. If not, you can do a search for “Banksy” and “Simpsons.” Or — as a last resort — go to FOX’s officially sanctioned Hulu site, where you can watch it as it was truly meant to be seen (i.e. surrounded by Verizon commercials).

Scroll down further to watch a particularly nice promotional clip for “Banksy vs Bristol Museum.”

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