‘Simpsons’ DVD bows in Aug.

Fox suggests $49.98 retail price for 4-disc set

Ex-cellent news: After several delays, Fox Home Entertainment has set an Aug. 26 street date for the release of the third season of “The Simpsons” on DVD.

Studio had originally indicated season three would be out by June (just in time for Father’s Day), then pushed the date back to July. Delays aren’t surprising given that “Simpsons” creator Matt Groening has imposed strict quality-control guidelines on the DVD collections, insisting on audio commentary for every episode (still a rarity for most TV-to-DVD releases.)

Season one of “The Simpsons” sold a record 1.6 million boxed sets, while the second season was no slouch, with an estimated 1.25 million copies snatched up.

Fox has set a $49.98 suggested retail price for the four-disc collection of 24 episodes from the 1991-92 season. In addition to commentary, set will include a discussion of animation with Groening, Jim Brooks and Al Jean; outtakes from numerous episodes; audio of a table read for “Treehouse of Horror II”; an 11-song jukebox feature; and Fox promos for the show.

Among the guest stars who popped up during season three: Aerosmith, Magic Johnson, Sting and Steve Allen.

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