17. John Waters
Character: John, Homer’s gay buddy
Episode: 'Homer’s Phobia', Season 8 ('96-'97)
Waters agreed to appear as the Simpons’ stylish camp family friend because, as he told producers, “If it’s good enough for Liz Taylor, it’s good enough for me...”
The episode is a sensitive and sharp critique of knee-jerk intolerance, but John/Waters steals the show with a barrage of ultra-camp, catty zingers (“Helen Lovejoy – sure, she looks blonde, but I’ve heard cuffs and collar don’t match, if you get my drift.”)
16. Dustin Hoffman
Character: Mr. Bergstrom, Lisa’s inspirational substitute teacher
Episode: 'Lisa’s Substitute', Season 2 ('90-'91)
Hoffman was one of the show’s earliest big-name guests (“I'm Mr. Bergstrom. Feel free to make fun of my name if you want. Two suggestions are 'Mr. Nerd-strom' and 'Mr. Booger-strom') but, weirdly, he didn’t appear under his own name.
Instead, Hoffman used the pseudonym ‘Sam Etic’ - supposedly thought up by James L. Brooks as a reference to Hoffman and his character’s Jewishness (Semitic – geddit?).
15. Michelle Pfieffer
Character: Mindy Simmons, Homer’s would-be soulmate
Episode: 'The Last Temptation Of Homer', Season 5 ('93-'94)
Despite being initially nervous, Pfeiffer was a big hit with the Simpsons’ crew when she came in to record her part as Homer’s donut-loving co-worker Mindy.
She wasn’t afraid to ditch her glamorous image to really nail the part – to get her dessert-induced drooling noise just right, Pfeiffer went Method - stuffing her mouth full of water and broccoli.