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The Simpsons viewers praise show's new breast cancer survivor character

·3-min read
Photo credit: Fox
Photo credit: Fox

The Simpsons has just introduced a powerful new character and storyline, which viewers have highly praised.

In this week's episode (October 24), titled 'Lisa's Belly', the eldest Simpson daughter struggled with body anxiety. Marge takes her to hypnotherapist Dr Wendy Sage to help her handle the anxiety, and Sage happens to be a breast cancer survivor who has had a unilateral mastectomy.

The show's creators wrote the plot to honour Breast Cancer Awareness Month, casting writer and breast cancer survivor Renee Ridgeley in the role, who is the wife of The Simpsons' showrunner Matt Selman.

Photo credit: Fox
Photo credit: Fox

Related: The Simpsons is about to do something it's never done before

Speaking to Yahoo Life, Ridgeley opened up about the character: "While Sage has all the telltale signs of a breast cancer survivor: a visible scar from a port-o-cath (a device used to deliver chemotherapy), curly hair regrowing from chemo treatment, an obviously one-breasted appearance, and is visually concave on her mastectomy side, the episode does not focus on her past disease."

"Sage shows up as exactly who she is now," she added. "By living openly as a one-breasted woman, she sends a message of acceptance and wholeness celebrated by individuals in marginalized groups."

Viewers raved about the show's exploration of body positivity and inclusion of breast cancer survivors.

"A great lesson in body positivity and the power of words," one Twitter user said.

Photo credit: Michael Tran - Getty Images
Photo credit: Michael Tran - Getty Images

Related: The Simpsons boss reveals whether the show will ever come to an end

"This is Breast Cancer Awareness Month done well," wrote another.

Some survivors who have had a unilateral mastectomy, in which one breast is removed, call themselves "uniboobers". One user wrote on Twitter: "As a uniboober, thanks to you [Matt Selman] and [Renee Ridgeley] for including this character! It's good to get more visibility and recognizing the beauty in all body types."

The Simpsons season 33 premiered on Fox in the US on Sunday, September 28, 2021. In the UK, the series airs on Sky One and Channel 4, while its archive of 33 years is available on Disney+.

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