Disney Plus will reportedly offer The Simpsons in non-widescreen following backlash

The Simpsons could be delivered in its original aspect ratio in early 2020.

Corinne Reichert Senior Writer
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently oversees the CNET breaking news desk for the West Coast. Corinne covers everything from phones, social media and security to movies, politics, 5G and pop culture. In her spare time, she watches soccer games, F1 races and Disney movies.
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Corinne Reichert
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Disney Plus Simpsons

Watching earlier seasons of The Simpsons in widescreen on Disney Plus crops out some visual gags.


Disney Plus has reportedly said it'll offer The Simpsons in its original 4:3 aspect ratio early next year, following complaints that showing earlier seasons in widescreen was cropping out visual jokes. The streaming service said it decided to offer 16:9 aspect ratio at launch "to guarantee visual quality and consistency across all 30 seasons" of The Simpsons, the AV Club reported Friday.

"Over time, Disney Plus will roll out new features and additional viewing options," according to Disney Plus' statement to the AV Club. "As part of this, in early 2020, Disney Plus will make the first 19 seasons (and some episodes from season 20) of The Simpsons available in their original 4:3 aspect ratio, giving subscribers a choice of how they prefer to view the popular series."

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Disney Plus launched Tuesday, and with it a daunting array of choices. But in addition to the first day being marred by service failures and login problems, fans started complaining that visual gags from The Simpsons, like in the season 4 episode "Duffless," were being cut off. The widescreen view also makes characters' faces look more stretched out.

The new Disney Plus streaming service offers a wide range of old and new Disney, FoxPixarMarvelStar Wars and National Geographic content. It's priced at $7 a month and launched Nov. 12 in the US, Canada and the Netherlands, and is coming to Australia and New Zealand on Nov. 19. Disney Plus will launch March 31 in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. It already has more than 10 million subscribers.

Disney Plus didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

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