Three years ago, The Simpsons aired a Valentine’s Day-themed episode featuring a Love Actually spoof called Love, Indubitably. Benedict Cumberbatch voiced Alan Rickman’s Harry Potter character, Professor Snape, while the David Bowie-penned “All the Young Dudes” played in the background. With the deaths of both Rickman and Bowie this week, the clip serves as an accidental but thoughful tribute to both artistic greats.
Fox unearthed the clip as “a (brief) tribute by Benedict Cumberbatch to the great Alan Rickman,” which also happens to honor the late musician. “Love is more powerful than all my magic,” declares Snape.
— The Simpsons (@TheSimpsons) January 15, 2016
The parody also features the voice of Cumberbatch as a Hugh Grant-type Prime Minister who falls in love with his “poor but cheeky secretary,” Eliza Commonbottom. What follows are appearances from many British cultural staples, such as Doctor Who, Sherlock Holmes, and Shakespeare.
Rickman starred with the real Hugh Grant in Love Actually as the on-screen husband to Emma Thompson. The actress called him “the ultimate ally” in a statement following his death.
The Simpsons executive producers Al Jean and Matt Selman also posted tributes to Bowie on Twitter. “This is as close as we ever got to having David Bowie on The Simpsons,” Selman wrote of a sketch featuring news anchor Kent Brockman wearing a Ziggy Stardust costume.
This is as close as we ever got to having David Bowie on The Simpsons pic.twitter.com/yiEXGs4sHQ
— Matt Selman (@mattselman) January 11, 2016
— Al Jean (@AlJean) January 12, 2016
Bowie and Rickman, both 69, died earlier this week after battles with cancer.