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Spoilers below for the latest episode of The Simpsons, if that's the kind of thing that bothers you.
Despite being one of the most famous people on TV, thanks to twelve seasons of CBS' The Big Bang Theory, Jim Parsons had somehow never lent his voice to The Simpsons during the CBS sitcom's run. (Did the show predict that in some way already?) That changed this past weekend, though, with Parsons popping by the animated mainstay for the episode "Frinkcoin." While he didn't have a gigantic presence throughout, Parsons factored into things in a splendidly fun way that was every bit as nerdy as fans were presumably hoping for.
In the most recent Simpsons episode, Lisa interviewed Professor Frink as part of a school project, and he revealed his latest invention, a cryptocurrency dubbed Frinkcoin. It made him the richest man in Springfield, which stoked the ire of Mr. Burns, and a crypto-battle ensued. The plot wasn't exactly the freshest, but it was handled in an interesting way, and also featured a highlight in the form of Jim Parson's as-himself cameo.
The Big Bang Theory vet showed up for an extended cutaway sequence meant to educate TV audiences on the definition and contextual use of cryptocurrency, though I'm not sure the segment did much to fully educate anyone on tech finances.
While standing in front of the stacks of cash that he made just for filming the final episode of The Big Bang Theory – that's a joke that probably hits closer to home than one might imagine – Jim Parsons uttered a most groan-worthy pun poking fun at Sheldon Cooper's favorite BBT catchphrase: "Kachinga!" (Cue those groans.)
With some self-referential humor concerning the nerdery of one Jim Parsons, who definitely did not jump over all those schoolbuses on that motorcycle, the Simpsons clip throws in some Matrix-esque green-number visuals before becoming a Schoolhouse Rock parody, complete with Matt Groening's signature animation style.
This bit of the sequence was possibly pretty touching for certain viewers. The original Schoolhouse Rock singer and voice actor Jack Sheldon, the instantly recognizable voice behind "I'm Just a Bill" and "Conjunction Junction," passed away on December 27, 2019, at the age of 88 years old. For the briefest of seconds, I thought The Simpsons had somehow landed Sheldon for a guest spot before his death, though it was actually the prolific voice actor Kevin Michael Richardson doing the singing.
Below is part of the episode's amusing full-screen message where those interested can "learn more" about the process.
Using the word cryptocurrency repeatedly when defining cryptocurrency makes it seem like we have a cryptocurrency novice’s understanding of cryptocurrency. Well, that is a total pile of cryptocurrency. In this system, rules are defined for the creation of additional units of cryptocurrency. They can be generated by fiat like traditional currency or just thrown around randomly or all given to LeBron. But for some reason these crypto guys are really into computers. So we have big buildings full of energy-gobbling air-conditioned computers solving useless math problems. But now we can’t have straws?! Also, we know who Satoshi is, but we’re not telling.
After playing Sheldon Cooper for twelve years on The Big Bang Theory, it's no surprise that Jim Parsons is adding a variety of roles to his resume as he plots out his next moves. The actor, who is maintaining his voiceover role for CBS' Young Sheldon, will next be seen in Ryan Murphy's Netflix series Hollywood, and is working on his own solo series called So Much. On the film side, Parsons will appear in the feature adaptation of the stage play The Boys in the Band, which already has a sacked cast. Here's hoping he can still make time for more Simpsons appearances in the future to give Professor Frink a run for his money-gloibens.
You can check out the full clip of Jim Parsons' Simpsons cameo below.
Later, glitches! The Simpsons airs Sunday nights on Fox at 8:00 p.m. ET.