Simpsons fans—and who among us isn’t a fan of the classic era?—will soon have reason to rejoice, as Disney+ is checking a major item off our wish list: Classic episodes of The Simpsons streaming in their correct aspect ratio.
If you’ve watched The Simpsons since Disney+ first debuted as a major streamer, you may have occasionally detected that something seemed amiss. This is because the show’s older episodes have been visually cropped to cram them into a standardized, modern 16:9 aspect ratio. This is problematic because the first 19 seasons of the series—which contains the entire golden era and then some—originally aired in a 4:3 aspect ratio, as was more common at the time. When you crop that ratio to 16:9, it results in a “zoomed in” appearance that has a tendency to destroy some of the show’s classic visual gags, as the tweet below illustrates.
The folks at Disney+ heard enough fan outcries over this problem that they eventually confirmed that the show would be offered in its original aspect ratio, but we never had an actual date until now. The below tweet from Disney today confirms that the return of the proper, 4:3 aspect ratio is coming in just over a week, on May 28, 2020. Finally, you’ll be able to watch “Bart the Lover” or “Duffless” without missing out on the show’s signature visual humor. This will be a big day for Simpsons fandom, as it will make the entire run of the series available, in the format in which it originally aired.