[As you probably already know, starting on Thursday, August 21, FXX is running the Every Simpsons Ever Marathon, running through all 552 episodes of "The Simpsons," plus "The Simpsons Movie." To aid in your viewing process, Team HitFix is selecting our favorite episodes from each day, plus an episode or two that you can skip and use as a bathroom or nap break.]
Picking episodes for Day 1 of FXX's Every Simpsons Ever Marathon was relatively easy. Yes, "The Simpsons" was quite fine right off the bat and it only improved as the show moved into its second season, but the fans here at HitFix were able to cobble together a clear list of favorites without any hugely disappointing exclusions.
Day 2 was far more difficult. We have five participants picking episodes here and we each snagged two favorites for the day, which stretches from "Bart's Dog Gets an F" through to "Last Exit to Springfield," or from Episode 29 through Episode 76.
I think we represented many of the best episodes from this fertile early period, but if I had been about to select four or five, I could have easily done it.
My greatest regret is that we didn't have room for "Selma's Choice," which has possibly my favorite opening of the entire series -- Homer's refusal to stop eating an extra-long sandwich leads to food poisoning and, as a result, Selma has to take the kids to Duff Gardens -- and it also has Lisa's "I am the Lizard Queen" trip. It's a glorious episode. But if I only had two picks... I'm solid on the two I picked. I wish we could have found room for "Radio Bart" and "Kamp Krusty" and "Stark Raving Dad," with its gloriously odd Michael Jackson cameo.
And here's the scary part: The next two days after this one are even tougher, as we move into what is generally accepted as the show's Golden Age.
Check out our recommendations and chime in with your own favorites...