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The Simpsons: Homer Simpson

By Wikipedia

Homer Jay Simpson (voiced by Dan Castellaneta) is one of the main characters in the animated television series The Simpsons. He is a stumbling, bumbling, well-meaning moron.

Our main article on The Simpsons is here.

Homer works in the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, in Sector 7G, although "working" in this case refers to dozing and eating doughnuts. He spends a great deal of his time at Moe's Tavern with his lifelong friends Barney, Carl, Lenny, and bartender Moe.

Homer Simpson popularized the annoyed grunt "Doh!" (made memorable through Dan Castellaneta's distinctive voice work), which began as an abbreviated form of Jim Finlayson's "Dooooh" from the films of Laurel and Hardy. This modern interjection has found enough popular acceptance to be included in the Oxford English Dictionary.

Family

Homer was born in Springfield, where he grew up (though one episode suggests he was born in Toronto, Canada (see Age below)). Homer is:

  • the second son of Abraham Simpson and first son of Mona Simpson
  • married to Marjorie Bouvier
  • the father of Bart, Lisa, Maggie,
  • the half-brother of Herb Powell, and Abbie, the daughter of a woman whom Abraham met while stationed in Britain during World War II and reportedly abandoned based on "cultural differences" as well as the fact that he "thought she looked fat." Abbie looks much like Homer and speaks in a similar manner although with an English accent.

Age

It has been suggested in the series that Homer is between 36 and 39 years old. In one episode, a quiz indicates he will die at 42 and he wails that he has "only three years to live" (it should be noted that Homer or Marge's mental arithmetic may not be reliable). Various episodes have given his date of birth as May 12, 1956; May 10, 1955, and March 20, 1955; and even 17-23-1956 [sic] (the former holiday Whacking Day is also on May 10, which causes Homer's birthday to go uncelebrated (Even by Homer); it should also be noted that in a later episode only Homer remembers his birthday, claiming it the same day as Santa's Little Helper's; although there is no evidence that any of the Simpsons were present at Santa's Little Helper's birth). In Treehouse of Horror XI, Homer claims his astrological sign is Taurus while reading the horoscope section of a newspaper. This sign corresponds to anyone born between April 20th and May 20th, which would make any birthdates not between those dates invalid. One episode had Homer and Marge attending a 1974 high school class reunion, which would be appropriate for a person born in 1955 or 1956 (although it is often implied that he was once held back a grade, possibly more than once). Homer's place of birth is Toronto, Canada because his mother refused to let her son be born in an 'ecologically dangerous' American hospital on account of her rebellious sixties nature.

Address

Homer and his family probably live at 742 Evergreen Terrace, Springfield. Several alternative house numbers on Evergreen Terrace are given in various episodes, including 59, 94, 723, 743, 763, and 1094, in addition to 430 Spalding Way.

In the 299th episode Homer's email address was given to be chunkylover53@aol.com. The email address in question belongs to Simpsons co-creator David X Cohen and can be emailed to receive Homer style replies.

Personality

Homer's essential personality traits presented themselves early on. He was raised solely by his father after the approximate age of 11. Homer slid through his classes and apparently graduated despite not passing Remedial Science until some twenty-plus years later. His senior yearbook reveals a lack of interest in sports and activities, and his quote was "I can't believe I ate the whole thing." In high school, Homer fell in love with Marge Bouvier, whom he would later marry (though both would later learn they had first met while children at summer camp). Following the completion of Remedial Science, Homer entered Springfield University and graduated due solely to illicitly changed grades. His education was further buttressed by Clown College, Bodyguard School, Successmanship 101, the Lanley Institute of Monorail Conducting, and mandatory Family Skills courses.

His minute attention span complements his intense (albeit short-lived) passion for hobbies, enterprises or causes. Although by nature an exceedingly lazy man, he is capable of exerting tremendous effort toward something, if only for a week or less. Good examples are when he converted his garage into abar, just to spite his local bartender Moe Szyslak; spent a whole episode studying and emulating Thomas Edison; and attempted to uncover a plot to trade Springfield's baseball team interstate by going on a hunger strike. These massively spirited endeavors can be triggered by almost nothing, as evidenced by his short-lived grease collection business.

Health issues

Regarding his health, Homer is incredibly lucky to be alive. He once gained an extra 70 pounds (32 kg) on top of his already obese condition to get on disability. He has broken almost every bone in his body and received countless cuts and bruises, both major and minor. He has blown out his knee; had his thumb cut off; undergone coronary artery bypass surgery (performed by Dr. Nick Riviera); had laser eye surgery; stabbed himself in the eye with a switchblade; put an electric drill through his eye while attempting to make eye-holes through a metal bucket that was glued to his head; broke his back on the top of a fire hydrant during a fight; had a cigarette put out in his eye; been in a coma because a candy machine fell on him; had his jaw wired shut; donated a kidney; had a crayon wedged into his brain; been rendered infertile from radiation exposure; suffered repeated back trauma; been run-over by a bicycle; been institutionalized (twice); nearly destroyed his stomach with beer and cannonballs; been forced by his cruel boss Mr. Burns to consume radioactive waste with a spoon; suffered four simultaneous heart attacks; been attacked by a swarm of bees; had his abdominal area torn open by a rabid badger; suffered alcohol poisoning (twice); been pummeled while inside of a robot; crushed by boulders and wrecking balls; been bitten by venomous snakes; electrocuted himself (by both tasers and power lines); set himself on fire numerous times; suffered multiple gunshot wounds; nearly suffocated after the garage door fell on him; had stitches in his eyeballs as a result of a crow attack; had a parasitic butterfly burrow into his skin and enter his skull; fallen off of Springfield gorge (twice within one day), had a drawbridge close on his head; tried to sign an insurance paper while it was going through a shredder; had a window closed on his head; and fallen off cliffs, down stairs, and off the roof of the house frequently; had his heart ripped out, and also been kidnapped and drugged by strange aliens because he found out their secret. Furthermore, his brain is cushioned by a unique and eponymous genetic condition: "Homer Simpson's syndrome." This allowed him to take several punches without falling over. Moe even trained Homer for boxing (with hobos), although Homer's boxing career ended when he was nearly killed by Drederick Tatum (who is much stronger than a hobo). Homer got shot in the head four times by a nail gun. He was hit by a car driven by Marge Simpson. Homer was also beat up by paramedics the first time he got alcohol poisoning.

Homer also suffers from several congenital conditions, most obviously male pattern baldness, but also a male "Simpson" stupidity gene, finger stubbiness (abnormally short and thick fingers) and the "Simpson butt" (a rather large rear end, which requires him to wear "balloon seated" pants), which are genetic and which he has passed on to his children. Homer also appears to have far-sighted vision (on occasion), requiring the use of reading glasses when reading a book or newspaper.

Homer stands at 6'0½" (184 cm).

Mental acuity

As widely evidenced, Homer's mind is vacuous, but sprinkled with occasional dense packets of knowledge. He has shown small bursts of astonishing foresight, memory, creativity, and fluency with language (including Japanese, German, Chinese, Spanish, and penguin). These bursts are almost always temporary, constantly changing, and frequently self-serving. He knows the name of every Ayatollah that has ruled Iran, for example, but only to persuade Marge to let him keep a vulgar T-shirt bearing the logo "Ayotollah Ass-a-hole-a" that she tried to get rid of at a yard sale. He can name every head justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, but this may well because one bears the name of a food product (Warren Burger). He once mentioned Frank Lloyd Wright in perfect context while arguing with Lisa, then confessed he has no idea who Wright was. Still another time, while using a knife to pull out a bullet, Homer identified all the tissue the knife came in contact with. The nature of this intellect is multi-fold and largely useless as well as transient. Much of his mental ability is suppressed by the presence of a wax crayon in the frontal lobe of his brain, the result of a bizarre childhood mishap. Also credited is the Simpson Gene, which almost guarantees that male Simpsons become underachievers. His stupidity may be exacerbated further by excessive alcohol consumption and repetitive cranial trauma.

Homer is inclined to fall into fantasy, often drifting off into his own world (such as riding the nuclear bomb a'la Slim Pickens in Dr. Strangelove) or perceiving reality in a more personally appealing manner. Notable are the odd conversations he has with his own brain, typically in an adversarial tone. For example, once he began a conversation with his own mind by declaring "Okay brain, you don't like me and I don't like you...". His liver once spoke to him too, cheering "Yay!" when Homer had been banned from Moe's bar and thus (briefly) depriving him of the ability to drink beer.

Homer is also prone to becoming very emotional, especially when it comes to his neighbors, the Flanders family, or troubles related to his son, Bart. He has rage issues and has been physically and violently abusive, often towards his son, whom he has strangled and even struck on numerous occasions.

Homer also has an IQ of 55, which technically makes him mentally retarded. This was established in the episode "HOMR", where Homer says his IQ was raised 50 points, and later on in the episode, he asks ifthere's any place for a man with a 105 IQ (of course Homer's mathematical abilities, or lack thereof, should be considered when placing stock in such figures).

Homer can also been prone to act like a little girl.

Diet

On the food front, Homer is particularly fond of doughnuts (especially LardLad Brand) and pork chops, but also pie, bacon and especially salt doodles and pork rinds. He once spent weeks eating a gigantic hoagie long after it went bad, making him deathly ill. In his gluttony, he has also consumed items that are not necessarily food from time to time, such as flowers, Play-Doh, Vaseline, dirt, pure flour, some novelty plastic lobsters from a salad bar, dishwashing liquid, the decorative bride and groom from a wedding cake (which he mistook for candy), a lubricated rubber stopper that had been inserted into his mouth just before receiving electroshock, fancy soaps and a package of dry gravy mix he found in a parking lot. His diet is not a good example to younger viewers and this point is frequently made throughout the series. Homer typically responds to food with copious drool and exuberant postures, or saying "mmm... ______" of whatever food he's about to eat or thinking about (not always necessarily food though). He also has his own experiment called "out of this world moon waffles."

Enemies

Homer has garnered more than a few lasting enemies. Most notable is the deceased Frank "Grimey" Grimes, for whose death Homer was indirectly but intensely responsible. This naturally resulted in the rancor of the aforementioned son, Frank Grimes, Jr. Other adversaries of note include his sisters-in-law Patty and Selma Bouvier, employer C. Montgomery Burns, mobster "Fat Tony," Springfield University Dean Bobby Peterson, president George Bush Sr., the Emperor of Japan, "The Fat Little Dixie Chick", New York City, PBS, the State of Florida, Sean Hannity and an inanimate carbon rod. Along with the rest of his family, he is banned from every state in the United States, except North Dakota & Arizona, rejecting the latter because of its perceived funny smell.

Sexuality

Although married to Marge and the father of three children, Homer's sexuality is not entirely certain. He has been kissed by at least two other men (his brief personal assistant Karl, and his openly gay temporary housemate in one episode) and has later wondered whether Marge's kiss is the best he has had that day. During his brief career as an artist he paints Lenny and Carl in the showers, unconvincingly claiming that is for "art." That said, Homer has also displayed mild homophobia complaining that homosexuals have taken all the toughest American names such as "Julian" and attempting to ensure Bart grows up "straight" by taking him on an unsuccessful deer hunt.

Name

Homer has gone by many names and aliases. While in the Witness Protection Program, the family assumed the surname "Thompson" (which he had a hard time understanding at first). After a crooked PI framed Lisa for a crime, Homer took the alias “Rock Strongo.” When he tried to rent a room, the desk clerk asked for his real name, so Homer instead called himself “Lance Uppercut.” Homer legally changed his name to "Max Power" for a time to escape public ridicule. He has also been known by many nicknames, including "Homey," "Homina," "Home-boy," "Colonel Homer," "Dancin' Homer," "Mr. Plow," "Mr. Sparkle," "Hungry, Hungry Homer," "El Homo", the "Brick Hit House," the "Southern Dandy," and "Bottomless Pete, Nature's Cruelest Mistake," among others. He once ran a gossip website under the alias "Mr. X." and briefly became a pie-touting super hero called "The Pie Man". "Angry Dad", which was based on Homer, was the name of a Internet comic character that was created by Bart.

Homer's middle name, "Jay," is a tribute by Simpsons creator Matt Groening to the work of cartoon producer Jay Ward, creator of Bullwinkle J. Moose and Rocket J. Squirrel. Abe and Homer share this middle initial, though not the name. Groening has stated that he named the core of the Simpsons family after members of his own family (Homer was his father's name). He also acknowledges that Homer Simpson happens to be a character in Nathanael West's The Day of the Locust.

Religion

When it comes to religion Homer can’t seem to make up his mind. He’s presumably been a Protestant, self dedicator to a life of blaspheme, Born-Again Protestant, Stonecutter, Movementarian, Muslim, Hindu, and Catholic—and that was just in his thirties.

Once, he even proclaimed, “Jesus, Allah, Buddha—I love you all!” and “Save me Jebus!” Furthermore, Homer has had many interactions with God himself, and while doing his taxes, even accidentally proving God doesn’t exist. Furthermore, Homer has extensive knowledge of Iranian theocratic politics and has strong faith in both the presence of Batman and Superman.

He also went by the name Elvis Jagger Abdul-Jabbar when he first met Marge, fearing she would lose interest in him if she were to find out his real name.

Rap Sheet

Homer has been arrested several times in the duration of the series. He has been incarcerated in Japan, England and Canada.

Awards & honors

  • First Annual Montgomery Burns Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence, 1992 (after sterilization)
  • Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Toxic Waste Handler of the Month, 1990
  • Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Employee of the Month, 1991 (after saving Springfield from a nuclear meltdown)
  • Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Medal for Bravery, 1995 (after physically plugging a radioactive gas leak)
  • Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Belching Contest Winner, 1995 (award later yielded to Jay Sherman)
  • Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Children's Model-Building Contest, 1997
  • Grammy Award for Outstanding Soul, Spoken Word, or Barbershop Album of the Year, 1985 (Be Sharps)
  • Greaser's Café Dance Contest, 1999
  • Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, (Dr. Haing S. Ngor or Don Ameche)
  • Springfield Bowling Championship, 1996 (PinPals)
  • P.J. O'Harrigan's "Sir Drinks-A-Lot," 1999
  • Pulitzer Prize for Journalism, 2000 (as "Mr. X")
  • Springfield Olympic Mascot Contest, 1999 (Springy)
  • High school reunion awards: "most weight gained," "most hair lost," "most improved odor," "oldest car," "lowest paying job," and for "traveling the least distance to get to the reunion," among others, 1993 (awards laterwithdrawn)
  • Ate the world's largest hoagie at a county fair in 1991 (this experience is mentioned in the Season 3 episode "Colonel Homer" but never actually shown)
  • In a 2003 poll by the BBC, Homer was voted the "Greatest American Ever".

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TV TIDBITS

Aired: December 17, 1989 -

Cast: Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith, Harry Shearer

Network: FOX

Genre: Cartoon

Theme songSoundtrack

Spinoff of: The Tracy Ullman Show

Image courtesy of FOX


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