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What goes around...

Simpsons News — Posted 27 Aug, 2005 by Scott

It may not be the most popular show on Australian television but it is without doubt the most repeated. The Simpsons has screened in prime time virtually every night of the week for what seems years, and not just in a single dose but often in blocks of multiple episodes.

Only a tiny amount of what is shown is new, and some repeats occur within a few weeks. The show may seem ephemeral to non-fans, but the sheer repeatability of The Simpsons provides a clue to the role played by repetition in popular culture and beyond.

The secret of The Simpsons - and other seemingly inexhaustible cultural franchises such as James Bond and Doctor Who - is devastatingly simple. Unlike real life, in which inevitably we grow older, these characters do not change in any meaningful way even as the world around them changes.

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