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Simpsons' Smithers is finally coming out

WAYLON Smithers will come out to Mr. Burns on the new series of 'The Simpsons'.

The power plant employee's affections for his boss are well known to viewers of the show, and season 27 of the animated comedy will see him take his feelings a step further.

Executive producer Al Jean explained to TV Line: "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."

Season 27 will also see Marge Simpson arrested after she allows son Bart to play alone in the park.

Al explained: "Marge lets Bart go to the park alone because he's too irritating, then she ends up getting arrested.

"I read a column by Mitch Albom, the writer of Tuesdays with Morrie, about a mother who was arrested for letting her son play in the park while she had to work. Albom was saying, 'When did it become illegal to let your kids play in the park when they're 10? When did kids have to be on a leash every minute?' So that's the basis of our story."

Elsewhere in the new series, Apu will fall out with his brother Sanjay, resulting in Sanjay's nephew Jamshed taking over the Kwik-E-Mart.

Al said: "Jamshed is 100 percent American. He doesn't speak like Apu and even disrespects his way of speaking."