Bart Simpson took to the chalkboard at the beginning of last night's episode of The Simpsons to apologize for a gaffe on the part of the show's writers. At the behest of Springfield Elementary faculty – as well as a fist-banging chorus of angry metalheads online, as spotted by Metal Injection – he wrote, "Judas Priest is not 'Death Metal,'" at least 20 times.
The heavy-metal band, which updated Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin's iron riffs in the mid-Seventies, had appeared on the January 5th episode with an updated version of the Beavis and Butt-Head favorite, "Breaking the Law." In the show – in which the FBI investigated Homer's proclivity for illegally downloading movies – the group set up camp outside the Swedish consulate, where the Simpsons were hiding out. But instead of encouraging outlaw behavior, Priest frontman Rob Halford sang, "Respecting the law / Copyright law!"
"There's only one surefire way to get fugitives out of a foreign building," an FBI agent said. "Blasting death metal!"
"Swedes love death metal," the Swedish diplomat who was aiding them said. "It reminds us of death."
The band didn't comment on the misnomer, but their finicky fans took to social media to grouse about how the cartoon could possibly mistake Halford's hellacious shriek for the typically guttural grunts of bona fide death metal bands like, say, Morbid Angel and Deicide. Now that The Simpsons writers know the difference, maybe some of the groups on Rolling Stone's 20 Best Metal Albums of 2013 list have a shot at bulgy-eyed infamy.