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After 18 years the Simpsons still know how to sell


The Simpsons continue to be an evergreen property in the children’s apparel business. Even though the property first launched on television in 1989, and today it is reaching its 400th episode, it still remains relevant to kids today.

“The Simpsons [has] humor that appeals to the entire family—as well as kids—and has continuity with both adults and children alike,” said Michael Peikoff, vp, domestic licensing for 20th Century Fox. “Bart Simpson is a wise-cracking, cool and irreverent character that children around the globe enjoy and relate to.”

Simpsons apparel graphic T-shirts, which sell in retailers including Kmart, Target, Mervyns and Ross Stores and aimed at boys sizes 8 to 20, stay relevant because they rotate around the latest “Simpsonisms,” or catch phrases from the show.

“The ‘Twin’ graphic treatment (pictured) immediately captures the essence of both sarcastic Bart and the humor that the property is known for,” Peikoff said.

Besides ensuring that the T-shirts have the latest Simpsons’ funny phrases, Fox has worked with its partners, in this case JEM, to ensure the latest fashion techniques are used when making the shirts.

“It is important to keep abreast of, and ahead of fashion…because it is an ultra competitive retail environment with a discerning customer,” Peikoff said. “In the past, licensed Ts were logo slaps… now manufacturers and licensors work together to develop product that jumps off the shelf.”

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