The Simpsons has found a permanent replacement for the character Edna Krabappel, with a new teacher set to be voiced by Kerry Washington.
Following the October 2013 death of voice actor Marcia Wallace, who voiced Mrs. Krabappel from 1990, the show retired the character in season 25, and has used guest teachers for Bart since – ranging from Willem Dafoe’s Jack Lassen to Ned Flanders.
In the upcoming episode ‘My Octopus And A Teacher’, airing on Sunday (April 24), Kerry Washington (Scandal) will join the show as the “thoughtful” and “highly capable” teacher Rayshelle Peyton on a permanent basis.
You can check out a clip from the episode below.
Bart has never had a teacher like her.
— The Simpsons (@TheSimpsons) April 21, 2022
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly about her new character, Washington said: “She’s a great teacher. But like all the best teachers, she knows that her students have just as much to teach her as she has to teach them. And teaching Bart is a job filled with opportunities.”
Carolyn Omine, series co-executive producer, added: “We’re not going to feel like, ‘Oh, this is a new Krabappel’. Most of our teachers are kind of burnouts, and it’s just a function of comedy. But we thought, ‘Let’s just make this different, let’s make her a good teacher.’
“Sometimes it’s hard to find comedy in people that are good, but then you think about people like [Parks & Recreation‘s] Leslie Knope. They’re just a bit too much, but they’re good at their job. We wanted to have that kind of teacher.”
The casting of Washington was seemingly sparked by a tweet she wrote back in 2020, after Hank Azaria announced that he would no longer voice the character of Apu in The Simpsons.
Dear animators looking for black voices… I’m avail. 🤷🏾♀️
— kerry washington (@kerrywashington) June 29, 2020
“Dear animators looking for black voices… I’m avail,” she wrote.
Washington will only feature in one episode of the current season, although there’s plans for the character to make several appearances in the upcoming season 34.