D’oh! How television has evolved! In 1989, human culture took a giant slouch forward with the arrival of the most wonderfully dysfunctional family ever. 28 years later The Simpsons is the longest running scripted program–and one of the most influential–in U.S. television history.
It’s hard to fathom now, but many American parents were afraid to let their children watch The Simpsons in those early years for fear it would have a bad influence on them. To which my wife and I sympathetically replied, “Don’t have a cow, man!” We gleefully solved the problem by watching the series with our kids and regularly remarking, “Don’t act like Bart or you’ll grow up to be a Homer!” It worked. We would often overhear them admonishing one another when either did something sneaky or selfish, “Hey, don’t be a Bart!”
So thank you, Simpsons, for teaching us how not to be. And for making us laugh so hard that our beverages of choice frequently emanated from our collective noses.
One final note: To those who don’t like The Simpsons, I’d simply like to add, with love and respect, “Eat my shorts.” ;>)