Why did Mr. Burn’s helper from the Simpsons change colors? In the first episode he appeared to be black, only to turn yellow later on. The creator, Matt Groening explained that and a few more interesting Simpsons facts.
Smithers, Mr. Burn’s helper on the animated show The Simpsons began his way in Springfield as a black man, Smithers already appeared in the 3rd episode of the first season in 1987 where he was drawn as a black man. At his next appearance he was painted yellow, like the rest of the characters.
Was this change deliberate? Matt Groening claims it was just a mistake: “Smithers was never black, he was always yellow. This was a one time mistake in the coloring process.” Said in an interview for TMZ while owning around 28 emmy awards for the show. He claims they couldn’t fix it due to their low budget.
Groening was asked why are the characters yellow and replied: “It was done so they won’t seem like anything seen on television (maybe besides spongebob).” He also explained why they all have 4 fingers – “Its easier. Painting 5 fingers requires a lot of pencil work.”
Simpsons 28 seasons began at 28 of September 1987, as short bits on the Tracey Ullman show. After 3 seasons it grew to 30 minutes episodes as a prime time TV show that started on christmas, 17 of December, 1989. Since then a movie was released in 2007 and made over 527 million dollars.