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The Ideal End: Aping the format of VH1’s Behind the Music, the ”Behind the Laughter” episode brilliantly portrayed the true story of The Simpsons: they’re all actors playing themselves. It’s a brilliant parody of the rise-and-fall-and-rise celebrity narrative, and features a nonstop array of one-liners. ”The dream was over. Coming up: Was the dream really over? Yes it was. Or was it?”Badness Avoided: Yes, it was. There are plenty of bright spots in The Simpsons’ second decade, but the show has never really rediscovered its ’90s mojo. You can trace the problems right to this episode: Once you go meta, it’s hard to go back. —Darren Franich
Image Credit: Fox
December 16 2014 — 12:00 AM EST
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