News has definitely spread about Bret and Jemaine's appearance on The Simpsons by the NZ media with people loving the Wellington Botanic Gardens reference.
Simpsons appearance 'good for tourism' Source
The Dominion Post
Last updated 05:00 28/09/2010
The joke might be lost on American viewers of The Simpsons, but the animated comedy's reference to Wellington's Botanic Gardens is a great advert for the capital, tourism leaders say.
New Zealanders Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie of Flight of the Conchords made a guest appearance on the show as the 22nd season opened on United States television last night.
They play counsellors at a performing arts camp that character Lisa Simpson is sent to. Clement heckles the children with the phrase: "I've seen more life in the Wellington botanical gardens."
The pair descend into their trademark deadpan banter over whether anyone knows what or where the Botanic Gardens are, and McKenzie finishes with a comment about how the gardens are in fact "teeming with life".
Positively Wellington Tourism chief executive David Perks said the Conchords' irreverent humour was a great advertisement for the capital's character. "It lets people know they come from Wellington and that it's a creative city ... we want to be the kind of place people can laugh with."
Wellington City Council parks and gardens manager Paul Andrews said a high percentage of visitors to the Botanic Gardens were already international, but a mention on The Simpsons was great exposure.
"I can't imagine people flying all the way to New Zealand to go to the gardens, but if they're in this part of the world they might pop over ... And the gardens are teeming with life, there's no doubt about it."
Conchords duo guest star on The Simpsons Published: 6:41AM Tuesday September 28, 2010Source: ONE News/BANG ShowbizConchords duo guest star on The Simpsons (Source: ONE News)Watch ONE News Breakfast Video: Conchords duo guest star on The Simpsons (1:23)Source
Conchords Jermaine Clement and Brett McKenzie guest star as camp counsellors on The Simpson - Source: ONE News
Two of New Zealand's most famous comedians have cemented their star status, appearing in the hugely popular show The Simpsons.
Jermaine Clement and Brett McKenzie made their Simpsons debut a short while ago.
In the episode, the duo are playing counsellors at a performance arts camp, alongside Glee stars Lea Michelle and Cory Monteith. They used the opportunity to showcase a little bit of New Zealand.
Clement and McKenzie achieved cult status with their folk rock parody series Flight Of The Conchords.
The Conchords creators are not the only ones to guest star on the show - there are also plans for pop star Katy Perry to appear.
The pop star will appear with the residents of Springfield in a special live action segment.
The usually animated characters, which include Homer, Bart and Lisa, are to appear as puppets in a segment of the episode, which will air in the US on December 5.
Perry will play the girlfriend of cantankerous bartender Moe and will also be seen by viewers leading The Simpsons characters in a rendition of The 39 Days of Christmas, believed to be a spoof of the festive classic The 12 Days of Christmas.
The 25-year-old singer, who shot her scenes in mid-September, will be joined in the episode by TV host Martha Stewart, who will appear as a cartoon version of herself.
NY Times blog:
September 27, 2010, 8:32 amClick for full article
Flight of the Conchords and Kanye West Make Their Cartoon Comebacks
By DAVE ITZKOFF
It’s been nearly nine months since Flight of the Conchords, the New Zealand folk-music comedy duo, broke the hearts of untold thousands by announcing that they were forgoing any additional seasons of their HBO series in favor of something called artistic integrity. But for a few glorious minutes on “The Simpsons” Sunday night it was like living in 2009 all over again as the bandmates Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie returned to television to sing a song (with the help of Stephen Hawking) about the paramount role that artists play in contemporary society:
'The Simpsons' Season 22, Episode 1 (Season Premiere) RecapSource
by Brad Trechak, posted Sep 27th 2010 6:50AM
Filed under: Reality-Free, Recaps, Fall TV
Just think, if 'The Simpsons' were a person, he or she would be of college graduation age right now in this miserable economy. Fortunately, the premiere episode of the 22nd season was much better than the economy.
Granted, 'The Simpsons' has been around so long that it feels like there isn't much else to say about the characters, but tonight's episode gave us something new about Lisa and how trapped she feels in suburban mediocrity. In doing so, the episode also parodies the genre of shows nowadays that break into musical numbers ('Glee,' 'High School Musical,' 'Camp Rock,' and ... yes ... 'Flight of the Conchords').
There were several references to various musical television shows throughout the episode. Did anybody notice Otto in 'The Partridge Family'-style bus in the beginning of the opening credits? That show could be called a progenitor to all the 'Glee,' 'HSM,' etc. shows on today. Sadly, so can 'Cop Rock.'
It's great how 'The Simpsons' is constantly biting the hand that feeds it without shame. The dig at Fox in the beginning with the network executive and the cupcake was hilarious.
The appearance of Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement from 'Flight of the Conchords' was the highlight of the episode. If only a bunch of people would change their minds and future 'Conchords' episodes would be made. ... It never occurred to me to interpret their show as an ironic, hipster version of shows like 'Glee,' but there you go.
Admittedly, the secondary plot involving Krusty winning the Nobel Prize then being put on trial by a European court didn't really strike a chord, but was by no means bad in concept or execution. It was simply outmatched by the 'A' plot. Any show's going to have sub-par episodes over a 22-year run (see 'Saturday Night Live,' for example). The concept had some humorous highlights like the Krusty Superbowl nip slip and his appearance on 'The Electric Company' (has Spider-Man ever actually danced like that?).
This episode introduced us to the Springfield boroughs including Sprooklyn (and maybe someday we'll see the less interesting Spaten Island).
There were several references to 'Flight of the Conchords' in the episode (and not just nods to the appearance of Bret and Jemaine). Their Sprooklyn brownstone looked like their home on their eponymous television show and the two flew at the end in a position reminiscent of the show's poster. They even managed to make fun of their accents (something the band has done itself on their show) with words like "hickler." Have we already mentioned how awesome 'Flight of the Conchords' was?
It must be very hard for Lisa. She has to deal with middle child syndrome and she's stuck in a town that can't appreciate her intelligence (except for maybe the school faculty who like having the higher scores for state tests). Even worse, she was given a chance to exist in a place that appreciated her and allowed her to grow intellectually and emotionally, and then she was torn away from it after a week.
Then the show gave us something else to think about with Grampa mentioning how his dream was to walk upstairs like an 8-year-old girl as well as showing us both sides of the artists' life. It is perspective and depth like that has greatly contributed to the longevity of this show.
There were too many intellectual art references in the show to list (only in an episode of 'Frasier' would both Elaine Stritch and Andrew Lloyd Webber otherwise get a mention). And let's not forget the clip from 'This American Life,' which actually featured the actual voice of Ira Glass.
-- Bart writing on the blackboard that sleeping in class does not help Leonardo DiCaprio (an 'Inception' reference).
-- Homer saying that he would kill for a Nobel Prize for Peace.
-- The Krusty Superbowl nip slip.
-- "Whoo-hoo! We're Region 1!"
-- "Maggie, don't ever turn two." Considering that she hasn't aged in 22 years, it's unlikely.
-- "Euroguards, take him away in Eurocuffs."
-- The Itchy and Scratchy theme sung by a military chorus.
Overall, it was an enjoyable start to Season 22. What did you think?
'The Simpsons' airs Sun., 8 PM ET on Fox.