The Simpsons has been a mainstay of television for the last thirty-plus years, and with the success, it’s had, comes many… many celebrity guest stars. From the likes of Simon Cowell to Michelle Pfeiffer, The Simpsons has had pretty much everybody that’s somebody doing a guest spot. Here we look at the top 5 celebrity cameos in The Simpsons and the episodes they’re in.
5. James Woods
To kickstart the list of the top five celebrity cameos in The Simpsons, in the episode “Homer and Apu”, way back in season five, Apu is fired by the Kwik-E-Mart, and in an attempt to get his job back, decides to go to the headquarters which is situated in the Himalayas. In the meantime actor James Woods turns up and applies for Apu’s position, citing research for a new film role as his main motivations. It doesn’t take long for things to unravel, with a particularly famous microwave scene involving Woods talking to his agent as he cleans said microwave, being the highlight of Woods’ cameo.
4. Buzz Aldrin
With everything Buzz Aldrin has done in his life, I’m sure he’d consider voicing himself on The Simpsons pretty high up. Another entry from season five, “Deep Space Homer” has Homer applying (and somehow being successful) to becoming an astronaut, alongside a briefly sober Barney. Once in space, in typical Homer fashion, things start to unravel much to the chagrin of Buzz, and we’re treated to ‘that’ scene of Homer eating his way through potato chips whilst floating.
3. Jon Lovitz
The long-time actor and comedian has voiced several characters over the years, however, the best and most recognizable would be the perverted creep Artie Ziff. Artie has been in a few episodes, but his first and best was “The Way We Was”, where Marge is explaining to the two kids how she fell for their father Homer. Nothing will stick more in my mind when thinking of Jon Lovitz than Artie Ziff pawing at Marge in the back seat of his car, before being slapped and reprimanded by her.
2. Stan Lee
No list of the best celebrity cameos in The Simpsons would be complete without the late, great Stan Lee. He didn’t just limit himself to his many Marvel cameos, but also branched out to a few episodes of The Simpsons. In his first appearance as himself, back in “I Am Furious (Yellow)” in season 13, we find Stan Lee in Comic Book Guy’s shop (where else) attempting to force The Thing into a Batmobile toy, followed by his adamant proclamations he’s The Hulk, as he tries to Hulk-out, outside the shop.
1. Michael Jackson
Season 3’s episode “Stark Raving Mad” had the King of Pop voicing himself… kind of. Playing an institutionalized Leon Kompowsky, he meets Homer when Homer himself is sectioned. Telling Homer he’s Michael Jackson, the pair end up friends rather quickly. Towards the end of the episode, Leon tells Homer and the rest of the family he’s not the real Michael Jackson, and then sings an incredibly catchy song to Lisa.
Less so a cameo and more a semi-regular guest spot, Kelsey Grammar as Sideshow Bob has to be mentioned, whether it’s for his vendetta against Bart, Krusty, or his own brother, he definitely deserves to be recognized here. Another mention for similar reasons would be the elusive and abandoning mother of Homer, voiced by Glenn Close, bringing some somber moments in a couple of episodes to the usually light-and-breezy comedy.
There we have it, that’s my top 5 celebrity cameos in The Simpsons!