Springfield Confidential: Jokes, Secrets, and Outright Lies from a Lifetime Writing for The Simpsons (Hardcover)
A "Must" pick by Entertainment Weekly
An A.V. Club "Best Books of June" selection
A "New and Noteworthy" selection by USA Today
In celebration of The Simpsons thirtieth anniversary, the show’s longest-serving writer and producer offers a humorous look at the writing and making of the legendary Fox series that has become one of the most revered artistic achievements in television history.
Four-time Emmy winner Mike Reiss—who has worked on The Simpsons continuously since episode one in 1989—shares stories, scandals, and gossip about working with America’s most iconic cartoon family ever. Reiss explains how the episodes are created, and provides an inside look at the show’s writers, animators, actors and celebrity guests. He answers a range of questions from Simpsons fans and die-hards, and reminisces about the making of perennially favorite episodes.
In his freewheeling, irreverent comic style, Reiss reflects on his lifetime inside The Simpsons—a personal highlights reel of his achievements, observations, and favorite stories. Springfield Confidential exposes why Matt Groening decided to make all of the characters yellow; dishes on what it’s like to be crammed in a room full of funny writers sixty hours a week; and tells what Reiss learned after traveling to seventy-one countries where The Simpsons is watched (ironic note: there’s no electricity in many of these places); and even reveals where Springfield is located! He features unique interviews with Judd Apatow, who also provided the foreword, and Conan O'Brien, as well as with Simpsons legends Al Jean, Nancy Cartwright, Dan Castellaneta, and more.
Like Cary Elwes’ As You Wish, Jennifer Keishin Armstrong’s Seinfeldia, and Chris Smith’s The Daily Show: An Oral History, Springfield Confidential is a funny, informational, and exclusive look at one of the most beloved programs in all of television land.
“The good is always rare. A truly great comic is rare. Mike Reiss, by definition, is a rarity.”
“Besides providing a hilarious look at what is perhaps the greatest TV show of all time, Mike Reiss has also created a staggering literary work that is almost completely devoid of typos and grammatical errors. It’s well worth the price of this book for the proofreading skills alone.”
“Reiss has done a masterful job of compiling this laugh-filled account of his long years as a writer on this beloved show. It’s the sort of book that makes you wish your dinner guests would go the hell home so you can get back to reading it.”
“Mike Reiss is a great example of somebody who writes for a living and does it so well in so many different ways. And, of course, he helped write this thing called The Simpsons.”
“Mike Reiss always brings his own unique, quirky, eccentric genius with him.”
“Extremely funny and fascinating.”
“Always honest, playful, and engaging, the book will provide fans with deep insight into the show’s history but also into its daily production and future...A charming look at a cherished American show.”
“Founding Simpsons writer Reiss offers a funny and factoid-filled glimpse behind the curtain — or, brown couch — of the beloved sitcom...a surprising view of Springfield you’ve never heard before.”
“In Springfield Confidential, Reiss offers a breezy history of the show from his insider’s perspective, from its dismal early prospects to its astonishing success, with insights aimed squarely at the Comic Book Guy variety of Simpsons fans.”
“Always entertaining and frequently laugh-out-loud-hilarious. There have been a lot of books written about The Simpsons, some of them good but most not so much, and this is hands down one of the very best.”
“A treasure trove of anecdotes and interesting details...This entertaining book is certain to resonate with devoted viewers and even those who only watch the show sporadically.”
“Springfield Confidential offers a wealth of great anecdotes, all peppered with punchlines that make Reiss’s memoir as hilarious as whichever season of The Simpsons you recall most fondly.”
“Springfield Confidential spills all of the juicy secrets from behind the scenes of your dad’s favorite cartoon, and after reading it, he may never be able to look at Homer the same way again.”
“The Simpsons is one of America’s greatest cultural products of last few decades, and Mike Reiss was and remains one of its key creators. So if you like The Simpsons, why wouldn’t you read this entertaining, charming and informative insider’s chronicle? I did, and I’m better for it.”