A joke made at the expense of the Fox News Channel on the The Simpsons was added so late in production that it did not appear in online versions of the episode.
The producers of The Simpsons were so pleased with the response to their first jab at Fox News that they hurriedly added a second jab into the episode, executive producer Al Jean told the New York Times.
For the second week in a row, the popular cartoon series mocked the Fox News, implying those under the age of 75 should not watch the channel.
The show, which is broadcast by Fox Broadcasting, flaunted a Fox News helicopter inscribed with a fictional slogan, “Fox News: Unsuitable For Viewers Under 75” during the opening scene.
News Corporation owns the Fox Broadcast network as well as Fox News Channel.
It was the only reference to Fox News in the entire episode.
The Fox News helicopter and accompanying slogan do not appear in online versions of the episode at Hulu and Fox.com, making some wonder if the joke had been scrubbed by Fox executives.
But Jean said the creators of The Simpsons have not received any pressure to stop making fun of Fox News.
“Both ends of it benefit the ultimate News Corp agenda,” Jean said. “We’re happy to have a little feud with Bill O’Reilly. That’s a very entertaining thing for us.”
Last Sunday’s episode contained a Fox News helicopter with the motto, “Fox News: Not Racists, But #1 With Racists.”
In that episode, the Fox News helicopter was carrying a Fox News executive. After the executive steps out of the helicopter onto the head of the Statue of Liberty, the helicopter goes into a tailspin and crashes, with the pilots lamenting, “It’s not fair, we’re unbalanced.”
The executive proceeds to conduct a secret meeting where his team plans a new health care scare that will send their ratings through the roof.
At one point in the episode, the likeness of former Vice President Dick Cheney laments the lack of terrorist attacks on America.
In response, Bill O’Reilly of Fox News called the show’s creators “pinheads.”
“Continuing to bite the hand that feeds part of it, Fox Broadcasting once again allows its cartoon characters to run wild,” O’Reilly complained on his show.