Almost right from the start, The Simpsons turned into an unrivaled phenomenon of modern pop culture. In 1987 the family of weirdos had their first appearance on a US television screen. Season One consisted of seven episodes - and hit the mark immediately.
There are few other US television series that comment on contemporary, cultural, social and political American issues as witty and intelligent as the ine featuring the guys from Springfield and their frequent guest stars. Since 1990 Matt Groening's cult series has been nominated for at least one Emmy per year. Deservedly so.
The Simpsons aren't just "funny". They offer maximum identification for: nerds, women's libbers, housewifes, dads, beer lovers, audacious kids – and even gays and lesbians. And they are totally respectless, which is just funny.
In his book "Hinter den schwulen Lachern" (What's Behind the Gay Laughs), Cologne writer and librarian Erwin In Het Panhuis has taken a closer look behind the Simpsons' scenes: In search for „homosexuality in The Simpsons“ he pursues his central subject of – „Gay History and Homosexuality in Mainstream Media“, - way before Smithers came out of the closet.
With regard to their alleged "orientations" the author examined 500 Simpsons episodes and a number of characters – focussing more or less on German synchronised episodes. The Simpsons, however in all their creativity, anarchy, and complexity have a way of eluding him. Maybe they don't want to be analysed?
Never mind: Pondering about the Simpsons and their "meaning" will most definitely blow your mind and turn nearly everyone into a nerdy fanboy - forever listing references, facts and events. Happened to us, too.