The essential thing you need to know
Let’s start at the beginning, because, although the series was born in 1989, in reality, it came out somewhat earlier.
Who is the creator of The Simpsons and how did they come about?
The artist Matt Groening. This began by creating a comic strip called life in hell, in which he portrayed his life in Los Angeles, where he had moved to pursue his artistic career.
Interestingly, Groening distributed his comic in a certain store called Licorice Pizza, which may ring a bell because the title of Wes Anderson’s latest film refers to it.
A copy of that book found its way to producer James L. Brooks, who commissioned Groening an animation project based on the comic. However, Groening drew (it is said that in just a quarter of an hour) The Simpsons, and that is where it all began.
But he didn’t do it exactly as you think…
When was The Simpsons created?
In 1987, Groening wrote and directed all of the initial Simpsons shorts for the program The Tracy Ullman Show. This one wasn’t very successful, but the shorts were.
So Brooks gave the green light to extend its duration to half an hour And they had their own series. On December 17, 1989 they premiered with a Christmas special and, although the series did not have much audience during the first episodes, it did before the end of the season and became the most successful of all time.
It caught everyone by surprise and, as often happens, no one in the series, not even its own creator, can explain why this has been the case.
In Spain, we would have to wait until Sunday, January 20, 1991, at 9:15 p.m., for Televisión Española to will premiere the first episode in our country.
Where do the Simpsons live?
In the fictional city of Springfield. One of the recurring jokes of the series is that it is not known exactly which of all the many Springfields in the United States it is.
Although Matt Groening himself said that was based in Springfield, Oregon, is not that city and the objective is, precisely, that represents a typical North American city, with which a majority can see themselves identified.
How long will The Simpsons be on the air?
At this rate, until the last star in the universe goes out. But for now, Fox (now owned by Disney, as The Simpsons predicted) has renewed it for a 34th season to air in 2023.
At the moment, and although it seems incredible, it still has a rope.
How many seasons does it have? and chapters?
You will have concluded it from the answer to the previous question. It currently has 33 seasons, with a variable number of episodes in each of them but which is usually in 22 episodes on average -except the first season, which only had 13.
As for the duration, the episode layer reaches approximately 20-25 minutes.
What is the Simpsons series about?
The Simpsons recreates the adventures of an average american family, initially born in the 50s (and, therefore, from the generation of the baby boom or boomers, although, in reality, they do not age), who lives in an average American city, surrounded by archetypal characters of American society.
All of them reflect currents and key elements of said society, in addition to the series portrays and criticizes said society, with metaphors or direct allusions to social and cultural issues. From discrimination against homosexuals, to the evolution of technologies, through power, with numerous presidents and former presidents of the country appearing in their episodes.
The Simpsons have always been a reflection of American society and its evolution, seen from a progressive perspective and with continuous criticism of the most conservative or wealthy sectors.
Of course, in reality, no one is safe from the acid irony of The Simpsons.
Who are the main characters
The main characters are undoubtedly the members of the Simpson family:
- Homer. The father, with a heart bigger than his brain. Stubborn and ignorant, he usually learns a lesson in the episode.
- margin. The suffering wife. Reasonable and trapped in a context that prevents her from following her dreams.
- Bart. The mischievous son, but also with a good heart.
- Lisa. The smart and stupid daughter, who is always right and rubs it against others in a repellent way.
- Maggie. The eternal baby always about to say his first word.
They are accompanied by some unforgettable and recurring characters, such as:
- Ned Flanders. The blessed neighbor of The Simpsons.
- Charles Montgomery Burns. Homer’s boss at the nuclear plant where he works, rich and typical conservative Republican.
- Moe Szyslack. The curmudgeonly owner of the bar that Homer always goes to.
- Milhouse Van Houten. Bart’s best friend, who lets himself be bossed around by him and loves Lisa.
- Apu Nahasapeemapetilon. The Indian dependent of Badulaque with eight children.
In addition, we have other unforgettable ones, such as Seymour Skinner, the school principal, the Chief Wiggum, from the police and father of Ralph, a boy with a certain disability, Krusty the Clown, television idol of Bart, the grandpa simpson, who lives in a residence, barney gumble the drunk…
It is almost impossible to cover all the characters that appear in the series, but it should be noted, the constant celebrity cameos. From Paul MCCARTNEY, until Leonard Nimoy, going through presidents, singers, soccer players and actors of all kinds, without a doubt, appearing in The Simpsons is a medal of honor.
Some Guinness World Records from The Simpsons
Having lasted so long, it is normal that The Simpsons accumulate several Guinness records, among them:
- The longest running animated television series from the United States. He turns 33 in 2022. The second is South Park, but at a great distance with 25.
- The longest running comedy series by episode count.
- The highest number of prizes Emmys won by an individual, James L. Brooks, screenwriter, producer and director.
- The highest number of prizes Emmy Won for an Animated Television Series.
- The oldest number of guest stars in a television series.
- The TV show most searched on the internet.
Curiosities that, probably, you do not know
Although we know the faces, the names and many dialogues by heart, here are some things that, we are sure, you do not know about The Simpsons.
- The Simpsons are yellow because, according to an interview by Matt Groening to the BBC, they wanted to catch those who do zapping. “When you’re channel surfing and you see something yellow, you know it’s The Simpsons,” he said.
- The The Simpsons most watched episode is Bart gets a high. Is he first episode of the second season and it is estimated that 33,600,000 North Americans saw it on the day of its broadcast.
- All characters on The Simpsons have four fingers except two. God and Jesus Christ each have five fingers..
- The opening couch gag is another symbol of the series. Each time it is different and has a practical utility, used to set the exact duration of the episode to which it should be.
- In the beginning, Krusty the Clown and Homer Simpson were going to be the same person. That is why they look so much alike, but it is an idea that, in the end, was not executed.
- The Simpsons are known for often making fun of their television network, Fox, known for its ultra-conservative position. Matt Groening asked, and is guaranteed by contract, to be able to mess with her.
- Another of the usual jokes is that, from time to time, you see pieces of an action movie starring actor McBain, based on Arnold Schwarzenegger. If you see all those pieces in a row, make a movie coherent.
Specifically, this movie:
As you can see, there are many details in The Simpsons that have made this series a fundamental part of popular culture and television history. And at the moment, it doesn’t look like it’s going to end anytime soon, or that there’s a person in the world who doesn’t know them.