Disney+ Streams ‘The Simpsons’ in Wrong Aspect Ratio & Ruins Visual Gags

     November 13, 2019


It’s only been a day since Disney+ launched and for every celebratory tweet being sent out, there’s a critical one close behind. Halfway through launch day a tweet made the rounds revealing Disney+ had changed the aspect ratio on The Simpsons to a widescreen setting and, in the process, had managed to ruin the option for big visual gags to be seen. It was big news when we learned The Simpsons were coming to Disney+ back in October, especially since this is the kind of show that would attract lots of longtime fans looking for one place to binge their favorite show in its entirety.

But, as Dorkly’s Tristan Cooper (via Engadget) pointed out on Twitter, a lot of the fun of watching The Simpsons has potentially been removed thanks to Disney+’s decision to stream every episode in a widescreen format. To prove the potential for a more awkward, less amusing Simpsons viewing experience, Cooper posted a side-by-side shot from an episode of The Simpsons before and after it was adjusted by Disney+. The left shot depends on the visual joke that all varieties of Homer Simpson’s favorite beer, Duff, are actually just the same beer coming from the same big tube. In the Disney+ shot, it’s hard to tell that all varieties of Duff are actually the same because of the wonky aspect ratio. Cooper also points out in an additional tweet that the widescreen format has had a weird stretching effect, providing another side-by-side shot to show how in one instance, Bart Simpson’s head looks way wider than likely intended.

According to Engadget’s report, the folks at Disney+ are “listening to feedback,” the implication being these things will be noted and adjusted. The real question, however, is wondering just how big a priority this is for the streamer and whether it will be fixed soon or if it will be quietly updated somewhere down the line. For now, it seems fans will just have to make do with this unusual aspect ratio.

The Simpsons Seasons 1-30 are available to stream now on Disney+. For more on what’s happening in the world of Disney+, check out what’s going on with your favorite titles and all the MCU movies currently available to stream.