‘Simpsons’ gets crazy cool with crosswords


On Sunday, in the sixth episode of its 20th (!) season, The Simpsons went crossword crazy in a cross-promotion with The New York Times and the Hartford Courant. The episode featured the voices of renowned crossword creators Merl Reagle (whose puzzles appear in the Courant and elsewhere) and Will Shortz, puzzle master of the Times. The crossword in Sunday's Times featured a special message "crucial to the episode" (though the episode was not crucial for completing the crossword), and the Courant published a Reagle crossword on Sunday called "Simply Simpsons," in which every question was Simpsons-themed. The episode itself featured a bunch of crosswords, all of which Reagle designed at the behest of Simpsons executive producer Tim Long. (For some irritating reason, none of those puzzles are online—you have to squint at the pixilated stills.) The Times has the back story on the collaboration. The episode was probably the biggest thing to happen in the crossword universe since the documentary Word Play; Long dubbed it "most crossword-intensive half-hour of television in the history of America." Of course, he's never seen the crossword episodes of Three's Company. "OK, I need a four-letter word for something that comes between Janet and Chrissy." Via Wired.

—Posted by Rebecca Cullers