TV & Movies

The Simpsons Just Brought Back A Controversial Character

But there's a major plot hole, according to fans.

'The Simpsons' brought back the controversial character of Jacques.
FOX/Disney Plus UK

More than three decades after his last appearance, The Simpsons has brought back a controversial character — and fans have a lot to say about it. In the Season 34 episode “Pin Girl,” which aired on March 19, fans were reintroduced to the character of Jacques, a French bowling instructor who attempted to woo Marge Simpson in the 1990 episode “Life On the Fast Lane.” Voiced by comedian and filmmaker Albert Brooks, Jacques returns to Marge’s life to coach her for a bowling tournament, and many fans were delighted by the character’s revival.

“Nice to hear the voice of Albert Brooks on The Simpsons again tonight. The funniest, the best,” one fan wrote on Twitter. “I don’t often catch the newer The Simpsons episodes, but I watched this one because I heard Jacques was returning,” another commented. However, others couldn’t help but notice that Jacques’ return presented a continuity error for the long-running show.

During the character’s first appearance on the hit comedy, Marge toyed with the idea of a romantic affair with Jacques, but eventually decided to stay loyal to Homer. In the Season 6 episode “Another Simpsons Clip Show,” Homer is finally made aware of what went down between the pair, but in the 2023 episode “Pin Gal,” Homer is none the wiser to Marge and Jacques’ near-fling.

“I don’t know if I like the idea of The Simpsons basically retconning Marge telling Homer how she almost cheated on him with Jacques,” one fan said of the plot hole, while another argued: “The most substantial part, if any, of ‘Another Simpsons Clip Show’ was Marge and Homer sharing their moments of almost-affair with each other.”

“Homer already learned about Jacques. I know there’s flexibility with canon but... c’mon The Simpsons team (Still love the reprisal),” one viewer added. Longtime The Simpsons writer and executive producer, Al Jean, later clarified the apparent error, writing on Twitter: “I think it goes without saying, but clip shows aren’t canon.”