After a long history of The Simpsons with white actors portraying characters of color, The Flash’s Alex Désert will portray Homer Simpsons’ longtime colleague Carl Carlson in the season 32 premiere.
While it’s currently unclear whether the role is a guest appearance or a permanent roster change – long-running voice actor Hank Azaria usually plays the character Black – it suggests that The Simpsons is finally responding to complaints made in light of the 2017 documentary , The Problem With Apu, which called on Azaria, among others, to distance themselves from voicing non-white characters.
While Azaria has retired from playing the South Asian character Apu, he continues to provide the voices of other Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) characters, including Carl, police officer Lou, and Spanish character Bumblebee Man.
“We are very pleased to welcome Alex Désert as Carl at the Simpsons’ season premiere,” said a representative. THR, but declined to comment further.
The Simpsons season 32 is scheduled to debut on Sunday, September 27.
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