If you look at all of the shows in TV's history, it would be hard to find a show that has amassed a bigger and/or better group of guest stars than The Simpsons. One would imagine that nearly everyone these days would be interested in getting Simpson-ified for the long-running show, but that isn't always the case. In particular, current First Lady Michelle Obama apparently had no interest in making a cameo, and co-creator and TV legend James L. Brooks shared that her response was far more amusing than a polite refusal.
Because the note is so short, I'm going to just assume/pretend that Michelle Obama actually wrote or typed that message herself, chuckling to herself as she watches the Season 4 DVDs for the thousandth time. I also like to think that she had the stipulation that she had to be romantically involved with Ned Flanders. Now there's a power couple.
Regular Simpsons viewers know that the show did indeed bring out Michelle Obama as the first lady within its universe, for a Season 21 episode back in 2010. But it wasn't Obama herself doing the voicework, which was performed by the always stellar American Horror Story actress Angela Bassett. It isn't clear if Brooks was referring to attempts to get her involved before that, or if they've tried to get her involved in the years since. The latter is probably the case, as she wasn't in office that long when Season 21 went into production.
The Simpsons is no stranger to mixing up its storytelling with the current political climate - George H.W. Bush was once a neighbor of Homer's, let's not forget - so it makes sense that Michelle Obama would have been someone to approach with gusto. I mean, she's done quite a few shows in recent years, from NCIS to Billy on the Street to Parks and Recreation, among many others, so I imagine Brooks and others were optimistic about their chances of getting the First Lady involved. Sadly, it didn't happen. But at least she appreciated the effort.
James L. Brooks shared this little tidbit with Variety after learning that Michelle Obama recently namechecked his Mary Tyler Moore Show as one of her favorite TV shows. If only he'd asked her to appear on that show, although it would have been less obvious then why such a cameo would matter.
The Simpsons will return to Fox for its amazement-inducing 28th season on Sunday, September 25, at 8:00 p.m. ET. Don't forget to also check out the latest "Treehouse of Horror" episode, which will feature the return of Frank Grimes. To see when everything else that won't have Michelle Obama on it is coming back, check out our fall TV schedule.