February 2011 Archives

Internet Randomly Assigns Bart Simpson A Birthday

barty, it’s your birthday / happy birthday, bartyFor some inexplicable reason, the internet randomly decided that yesterday (or today, depending on who you ask) would be Bart Simpsons's 32nd birthday, if he were capable of aging and also not a made-up character.

As far as I can tell from Google's incredibly imprecise realtime search, the news of Bart's mortality appears to have originated from the Twitter account of record label Moodgadget, which got more than a hundred "retweets." Soon, "Bart Simpson" became a "Trending Topic" on Twitter for quite a while and news of his birthday spread like a funny cat video through Facebook and the rest of the internet.

The date isn't based on any premiere date (as every Simpsons fan knows, The Simpsons first appeared on The Tracey Ullman Show on April 19, 1987; the Christmas special aired on December 17, 1989; and the series proper premiered on January 14, 1990), any explicit date given in the series, nor the birthdates of his voice actress, Nancy Cartwright (October 25th), or would-be namesake, creator Matt Groening (February 15th).

So, when is Bart's birthday? The good people over at the Simpsons Archive already determined it years ago. According to the 1992 episode "Lisa's First Word," Lisa was born during the 1984 Summer Olympics. Specifically, Marge started going into labor during the women's 100 meter butterfly, which was scheduled on August 2nd. In the 1997 episode "My Sister, My Sitter," Bart exclaims that he is "two years and thirty-eight days" older than Lisa, which would put Bart's birthday on or around June 25th.

Simpsons Dork Blows It For Humanity

ken jennings welcomes our new computer overlords
IBM's "New Computer Overlord" Watson Conquers "Jeopardy!" | NBC Los Angeles

Simpsons Illustrated Eerily Predicts the Future

Simpsons Illustrated was an official Simpsons magazine that went on for 10 issues in the early 1990s. Each issue featured exclusive Simpsons comics, news, and pictures of people who worked on the show (Disclosure: the header and title of IN THE NEWS is an, er, homage to this magazine). It was the forerunner to Bongo Comics Group and the Simpsons Comics series.

In 1992, they did a special 3-D issue featuring a barbecue-themed comic with an interesting moment:

panel 1

panel 2

Yes, Lisa requested a vegetarian alternative three years before becoming a vegetarian in the 1995 episode "Lisa the Vegetarian."

Was this quick moment merely an indication of Lisa's multiculturalism and non-conformist personality? Was her character so predictable that it was assumed she'd eventually turn vegetarian? Was it simply to set up the use of a long prop, in this case a shish kebab, in order to take advantage of the 3-D gimmick? Or, more likely, did the writer of the comic have access to Simpsons episodes from the future, thus allowing him or her to retro-plagiarize "Vegetarian" writer David X. Cohen?

You can read the whole issue over at the astoundingly comprehensive Spanish Simpsons Comics blog Tebeos de los Simpsons, including an early comic version of the Hey Arnold! pilot.

Cato Institute Actually Just A Bunch of Simpsons Dorks

to tahitiThe Cato Institute, the highly respected and influential libertarian think tank, just released an important study revealing that the Obama Administration's push for high-speed rail is exactly the same as as an episode of a cartoon show:

Biden's performance brings to mind the classic Simpsons episode "Marge vs. the Monorail" in which con-man Lyle Lanley convinces the town's residents to waste money on an exciting-sounding high-speed train that turns out to be a boondoggle.

Looks like Vice President Biden made the mistake of talking to a group of people about transportation and being enthusiastic about it! Everybody knows you're not supposed to do that anymore, or else you'll be compared to a Phil Hartman character from 20 years ago. Doesn't this guy have handlers?

There are some uncanny parallels between the two pitches.

OH I BET THERE ARE.

Simps Scribe Pans Puns

Looking at a list of "Mad" movie parodies. Vomit is a constant theme: "Throw Up", "Guess Who's Coming To Throw Up Dinner", etc.7:43 PM Feb 8 via web

Some Mad parodies = very gentle. "The Post-Graduate"? "Blue-Eyed Kook"? "Midnight Wowboy"?7:46 PM Feb 8 via web

Biggest Mad parody reach? My vote goes to the spoof of Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, called (get ready) "Boob & Carnal & Tad & Alas". Tad!7:48 PM Feb 8 via web


Mr. Long is the writer of the Simpsons episodes New Kids on the Bleech, Million Dollar Abie, Elementary School Musical, and Brake My Wife, Please. [Twitter]

Disgraced Talk Show Host Conan O'Brien Ripping Off The Simpsons

Disgraced talk show host Conan O'Brien, who was famously exiled from network television for being such a bad man, has apparently resorted to blatantly ripping off the beloved American institution known as The Simpsons in an act of brazen desperation, a new low for this sad, sad man. In the opening titles of his new variety show on TBS, a silhouetted family drives over a bridge from a city and then runs inside their home to watch TV. Sound familiar? If that weren't enough, a wacky gag involving the family - a couch gag, if you will - occurs on Thursday shows.

Opening sequence to Conan episode 16

EXCLUSIVE: Even More Upcoming Season 22 Episodes!

As the Internet's number-one premier source for Simpsons news & rumors, IN THE NEWS is proud to be on the receiving end of many a press release. Not to brag or anything, but unlike our so-called competition over at Simpsons Channel and Yahoo! TV Webportal, we are sometimes privy to EXCLUSIVE press releases sent directly from Simpsons HQ! Here's one we got just the other day:

Dear rubbercatsimpso,

Despite what you may have heard, The "Simpsons," America's only TV family, is still going strong after all these years. Our ratings are as strong as they'll ever be thanks to the credulity of loyal viewers like you. The crew here at News Corp has just put the finishing touches on the rest of Season 22, and we thought fans might be interested in a little sneak preview of what's on tap.

S-AOL, or the 120 Days of Modem

In a special trilogy of non-canon tech tales, Lisa gets trapped in a promotional ARG, Bart gets trapped in an arcade game, and Homer surfs the web -- literally! He literally surfs the world wide web.

Salvia, or the 420 Days of So Dumb

In a special trilogy of non-canon drug diaries, Homer and Barney take a mescaline-fueled trip through the desert Southwest, in the process confronting the dark heart of the American dream; Bart and Milhouse overcome anti-yellow racism in their marijuana-fueled search for a Krusty Burger, in the process confronting the dark heart of the American dream; and Lisa embarks on an ecstacy-fueled picaresque set in late 80s Madchester, in the process confronting the dark heart of the British dream. Guest staring Morrissey.

Yellow, or the 120 Days of So-(Annoyed Grunt)

SEASON FINALE When Mayor Quimby, Reverend Lovejoy, President McBain and the Blue-Haired Lawyer kidnap several Springfield Elementary students and coerce them into committing degrading perversions that irreparably commidfy their sexual identities, it's comes down to Bart and Lisa to concoct the perfect scheme to save the humanity of their peers and themselves. But first they'll need some help. Lester and Eliza guest star.

Despite scheduling challenges from the NBA regular season and Bob's Burgers, we are confident most, if not some, of these episodes will make it to air by the end of next year. And in case you were worried, we've got *plenty* more of the cutting and relevant Fox News jokes our truest fans have come to know and love.

Best,

Virgil Texas
Associate Intern, "The Simpsons"
http://twitter.com/virgiltexas
"dont have a cow man! thank you to our brave soldiers serving overseas" - bart simpson

Simpsons insiders: send me all your exclusive Simpsons info, either by e-mail (simpsons@rubbercat.net) or by leaving it in the dumpster behind Rug Trader at the corner of Pico and Sepulveda!!!