"Queremos a los Simpson!" "We want The Simpsons!"
Hundreds of young Bolivians took to the streets of the country's major cities recently to protest plans by a leading TV channel to replace reruns of "The Simpsons" with a new reality/gameshow called "Calle 7."
The marches targeted Bolivia's Unitel TV network and were organized on Facebook under the banner: "Protest Unitel, Out with Calle 7, Out with Trash TV!" The organizers wrote the following description of the protest's goal:
"Let them know that they can't impose trash programs to the audience, it's not only about The Simpsons but for every other show they continue to take away each day, so they can replace them with reality and sensationalist shows, scandalous programming, trash shows that only seek to turn viewers into idiots."
Here's a clip from Calle 7 in which a bunch of wetsuit-clad contestants see how long they can hang by their arms over a pool:
Supporters of the marches created posters and memes to encourage other Bolivians to join the demonstrations.
On Feb. 6, a large group of protesters gathered outside Unitel's offices, jumping and chanting in support of "The Simpsons."
Network executives took notice.
The demonstrators — some dressed as duff beers, others wearing Bart and Homer Simpson masks — prompted the network not only to bring back the show to its usual scheduled time beginning March 9 but to expand its time slot from 45 minutes to 2 hours.
The show thanked protesters via Twitter and also through a hilarious video message on their Facebook page.