It was a typical Sunday night on Fox with another mediocre, late-era episode of The Simpsons called "I'm Just a Girl Who Can't Say D'oh" hitting the airwaves — until the credits started to roll.
Phoenix band Okilly Dokilly's video for “White Wine Spritzer” screamed behind the names of the iconic show’s cast and crew. The metalcore track is on Howdilly Doodilly, the group's 2016 debut LP, and it’s a tribute to the drink of choice for Ned Flanders, the left-handed, Christian next-door neighbor of the dysfunctional animated family who the band dresses up as.
For readers unfamiliar with Okilly Dokilly, they're pioneers in the musical genre of "Nedal," the term the band invented to describe their Simpsons-themed metal. In 2015, the band promptly went viral after posting four of their demos on Bandcamp, and over the last few years, they've toured with fellow parody metal bands such as Mac Sabbath and Metalachi. Their second album, titled Howdilly Twodilly, was released on March 29.
Now, after years of honoring their favorite TV show in their own unique way, Okilly Dokilly have the distinct honor of becoming an official part of Simpsons history — not to mention getting on broadcast television. Bootleg Barts these guys ain't.
Reached via email, Head Ned, the band's mysterious frontman, says the appearance came together after he woke up to an e-mail from Fox two months ago while on tour. It stated that the producers of The Simpsons wanted to run the video. The band was "blown away" when he told the rest of the Neds, who didn't know until a few days ago that the video would be playing.
"Even though we worked with them on the details, it all seemed so unreal that we kept it pretty under wraps until it happened," Head Ned says. "Before Sunday, it was just an e-mail conversation and a lot of anticipation."
The video features the naughty group of Neds, dressed in their trademark green sweaters, sipping more than their share of the titular beverage. Local artist Justin Humbert directed the video, which was filmed by the Phoenix-based creative team Plastic Monsters.
The group announced the appearance on their Facebook page on Sunday evening:
“Neighborinos! We are beyond humbled and in disbelief. Our music video for 'White Wine Spritzer' was included on the latest episode of The Simpsons. Things are coming up Ned.”
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Since the video is several years old, it does feature the group’s old lineup. The band currently consists of Head Ned on vocals, guitarist Shred Ned, drummer Dread Ned, bassist Bed Ned, and Zed Ned on synths.
The appearance comes just as the band begins their April tour with sold-out shows. Local favorites Playboy Manbaby and Bear Ghost are opening for them on selected dates. Head Ned is open to future appearances on The Simpsons, but right now they just want to take in their unprecedented success.
"I feel humbled, proud, and somewhat liberated. Almost like I'm wearing nothing at all," he says. "I think, when we get back home, we might just take a drive up to Vegas and celebrate with a white wine spritzer."
Disclosure: Head Ned was employed at Phoenix New Times through 2017. Dread Ned also occasionally contributes to the New Times.