The Iranian regime has banned all dolls based on characters from The Simpsons. “The Simpsons dolls are merchandise from an animated series, of which some episodes are even banned in Europe and America,” said the relevant apparatchik by way of explanation (yet one more reason, if you needed one, why we shouldn’t be in the business of banning things, be they cartoons of the Prophet or of yellow denizens of Springfield). But surely The Simpsons is especially offensive to the mullahs, right? Herewith, the 10 Simpsons characters most loathed by Tehran:
10. Principal Skinner. Fought bravely for the Great Satan in Vietnam.
9. Lunchlady Doris. Married a guy named Freedman. Look it up.
8. Apu Nahasapeemapetilon. Scurrilous polytheist!
7. Waylon Smithers. “As you can see, the real deal with Waylon Smithers is that he’s Mr. Burns’ assistant. He’s in his early 40s, is unmarried, and currently resides in Springfield.”
6. Kent Brockman. “Brockman,” eh?
5. Artie Ziff. Jewish millionaire voiced by Jon Lovitz.
4. Bart. For much the same reason the Czech Communists feared the Plastic People of the Universe: Bart is rock ‘n’ roll, and rock ‘n’ roll is subversive.
3. Krusty the Clown. Son of Rabbi Hyman Krustofsky. And they dare deny Jews control the entertainment industry!
2. Lisa. Lisa wouldn’t hurt a fly. Instead, she is an extremely bright, curious, inquisitive young woman who is never afraid to say exactly what’s on her mind. It’s difficult to think what could be more threatening to the mullahs. Except …
1. Maggie. Silent. Ever-watching. Omnipresent. Handy with a pistol. Could Maggie be Mossad? Iran can’t take that chance.