The all-time favorite and unapologetic cartoon, The Simpsons, is the longest-running U.S. sitcom, scripted television series, and U.S. animated program.

With such records, it is to no-one's surprise to know that back in 2005, MBC producers thought Arabizing this hit show and bringing it to the Middle East would be a good idea.

Premiering on the first night of Ramadan that year, Al Shamshoon struggled and failed to be successful.

34 episodes in, the Arabic version of The Simpsons was pulled from MBC 1, leaving space for the original show to air.

From Homer to Omar

In order to amiably introduce a new western TV show into the Middle East, names had to be changed - along with everything else. 

Homer Simpson, the main beer-lover, and clumsy character became Omar Shamshoon, married to Mona Shamshoon, originally named Marge. 

They lived in Rabeaa (Spring) instead of Springfield, with their daughter Bessa (Lisa) and their son Badr (Bart.) 

It is unnecessary to mention how all the secondary characters' names had to endure the same changes. 

A switch of faith

As many of you know, The Simpsons, as a family, followed Christianity as a faith - regardless of whether or not cartoon characters are as conscious as the people watching them. 

For a smooth introduction into a Muslim-majority region, Al Shamshoon were given Islam to follow; which meant that Homer's ever-present Duff beer was turned into soda. 

What happened to Moe and all the scenes in his tavern? Gone, cut out, as if they never existed.  

Pork was also eliminated, hot dogs were turned into halal Egyptian beef sausages, and donuts - another famous Homer trademark - were changed into kaak, a type of Arab cookies. 

On a happier note, Omar Shamshoon still said "D'oh!"

Not all changes were embraced

Source: Imgur

Al Jean, The Simpsons' show-runner, writer, and executive producer believed these modified characters did not represent The Simpsons anymore. 

"If he doesn't drink and eat bacon and generally acts like a pig - which I guess is also against Islam - then it's not Homer," Jean once said.

All references to religions other than Islam were removed

Arabic version, the Simpsons, Al SHamshoon
Source: quebecblogue

In a move to diversify the show, Jewish (Krusty the Clown,) Christian (the Flanders and Reverend Lovejoy), and Hindu (Apu, Kwik-E-Mart owner, and his family) characters were always present.

The Arabized version, however, either changed, edited, or removed every reference to any of these faiths. 

Quite an odd decision to make, considering the Middle East has various religions cohabiting together.

The voices were provided by famous Egyptian actors

Arabic versiom , the Simpsons, Al Shamshoon
Source: allied-media

Mohamed Henedy, one of the Arab world's top comedy actors, provided the voice of Omar Shamshoon. This is not Henedy's first time in such roles as he was the voice of "Timon" in the Arabic dubbed version of Disney's "Timon and Pumbaa".

Hanan Turk lent her voice to Badr Shamshoon.

The show was neither really Arabic nor American

Al Shamshoon, the simpsons, arabic version, 2005, mtv
Source: mentalfloss

This whole modified Arabic version created a mess of cultural references, leaving viewers confused.

With most of the script being lost in translation, most of the jokes cut out, and no freedom of expression to mock politicians and other characters, the end result had to undoubtedly be bland.