Over the course of The Simpsons' lengthy run, one of the long-running jokes is Waylon Smithers' undying love for his boss, Montgomery Burns, characters who are both voiced by Harry Shearer. While Smithers' sexual orientation has never been explicitly stated on the show, it has been inferred since the first season that Smithers is gay. The Simpsons showrunner and executive producer Al Jean has revealed in an interview with TV Line that Smithers will finally reveal to Mr. Burns that he's a homosexual in Season 27.
"In Springfield now, most people know he's gay, but obviously Burns doesn't. We deal with that in two episodes. We actually do a lot with Smithers this year; he gets fed up with Burns not appreciating him and considers his options."
Ironically, the long-running animated series lost Mr. Burns and Smithers voice actor Harry Shearer, after a contract dispute in May, but he eventually rejoined the animated series in early July. In an interview earlier this month with Entertainment Weekly, Al Jean stated that Smithers has become fed up with Mr. Burns and falls in love with a character named Julio, voiced by Hank Azaria, who has appeared in a number of episodes throughout the years. Here's what Al Jean had to say earlier this month.
"We have a show where Smithers realizes he's never going to get what he wants from Burns so he quits and falls in love with somebody else. The someone else is a character that Hank [Azaria] has done on the show before, Julio, who is a little like his character from The Birdcage."
Unfortunately, Al Jean wouldn't say when exactly these Smithers episodes will air, but the show certainly seems to be shaking things up a bit in Season 27. The season kicked off last night with Every Man's Dream, where Homer and Marge briefly get separated. It has also been confirmed that the nefarious Sideshow Bob (Kelsey Grammer) will finally get to kill Bart Simpson in the show's annual Treehouse of Horror episode, although Bart will be alive and well in the next episode. There will also be an episode inspired by Boyhood, and another episode where we get to see the home planet of aliens Kang and Kodos. What do you think about Smithers coming out as homosexual to Mr. Burns?