Last Updated 12/12/08The Characters

Animations - bart

Homer J. Simpson: Homer is the boorish father of the Simpson family. With his wife, Marge, he has three children: Bart, Lisa and Maggie. As the family's provider, he works at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant and embodies several American working-class stereotypes: he is crude, overweight, incompetent, clumsy, and lazy. However, he is also fiercely devoted to his family. Despite the suburban blue-collar routine of his life, he has had a number of remarkable experiences. From Wikipedia.
Marjorie "Marge" Simpson: Marge can be somewhat of a doormat for her husband and children, reasoning that they love her and mean well behind their various crazy schemes. A major character trait is her inability to see her family as overly strange, making her quite eccentric when compared to non-regular characters and people from outside Springfield. She often provides a voice of reason for the town itself, but many of the townspeople are frustrated or contemptuous of her frequent failure to recognize or react correctly to breaches of social norms. She puts up with a lot from her family, but even she has a breaking point; she has been known to fight with Homer — a few times to the point of leaving him (most notably in "The Simpsons Movie" where she taped her farewell message over their wedding video) — and does not shy from disciplining her children when needed. From Wikipedia.
Margaret "Maggie" Simpson: Maggie is the youngest child of Marge and Homer, and sister to Bart and Lisa. She is often seen sucking on her pacifier, and when she walks she trips over her clothing and falls on her face. Because she cannot talk, Maggie is the least seen and heard in the Simpson family. From Wikipedia.
Lisa Simpson: Middle child and odd girl out of the family as the resident intellectual and political conscience, though sometimes especially in the early shows she can be as mean and vulgar as the others. Loves music, especially the jazz she plays on her saxophone. She's a Buddhist.
Bartholomew J. "Bart" Simpson: The show's breakout star, "underachiever and proud of it". Loves to skateboard and get into mischief like making crank calls to Moe. Catch phrases: "¡Ai, caramba!", "Eat my shorts!" and "Don't have a cow, man!" Briefly a star on "Krusty the Clown" as the "I didn't do it!" kid. Sometimes calls his dad by his first name and gets away with it, which made me think at first that Homer was his stepfather. Hobbies include tormenting Homer, Lisa, Principal Skinner and Groundskeeper Willie. Showed his dingle in "The Simpsons Movie." Voiced by a woman, Nancy Cartwright.
Abraham "Abe" or "Grandpa" Simpson: Homer's dad and butt of the show's jokes about ageing including senility: short-tempered, he tells rambling stories then falls asleep mid-sentence. Lives in Springfield Retirement Castle with Jasper and Old Jewish Man. Once got together with Marge's mom. Served in World War II with Mr. Burns either (different story in different episodes) in the Army in Germany or in the Pacific as a Navy carrier pilot. Wears false teeth. Wife (Homer's mother) left him to become a '60s radical activist.
Patty Bouvier: Marge's sister; out as a lesbian. She and sister Selma are surly clerks at the local Department of Motor Vehicles. They hate Homer and love the '80s TV show "MacGuyver".
Selma Bouvier: See Patty above. Has been married to Sideshow Bob and washed-up film actor Troy McClure.
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon: A tribute to the many Indian immigrants who work at and own American convenience stores like the 7-Eleven, renamed the Kwik-E-Mart in the "Simpsons" world. A Hindu with a statue of Ganesha in his shop, where he works every day of the week. Married (by arrangement) to Manjula and father of octuplets. Has a brother. Met Paul McCartney back in the 1960s. Catch phrase: "Thanks, come again!" no matter how rude the other person is or how angry he really is. Was the George Harrison member (like Indian Rikki Fataar in "The Rutles") in the Beatles-parody episode about the B-Sharps barbershop quartet. Apu is a vegan. More on Wikipedia.
Herschel "Krusty the Clown" Krustovsky: Perennial presenter of Springfield's kiddie TV show, like something out of the '50s, featuring the VERY violent "Itchy and Scratchy" cartoon. Known for his goofy laugh and unethical product lines including the town's only fast-food burger joint, Krusty Burger. Was once framed for robbery until Bart proved he was innocent, claiming Krusty's illiterate. Then contradicting that later, Krusty turned out to be Jewish, the long-lost son of Rabbi Hyman Krustovsky. Sidekicks include Mr. Teeny the monkey, Sideshow Bob (formerly) and Sideshow Mel.
Robert Underdunk "Sideshow Bob" Terwilliger: "Frasier" star Kelsey Grammer takes his Mid-Atlantic-accented intellectual character up a notch and into total insanity as a jealous kiddie-show sidekick and would-be criminal mastermind, famous for his long-standing grudge against Bart, for catching him trying to frame Krusty, and for his dreadlocks. For a while he took over Krusty's show turning it into his "Cavalcade of Whimsy". Briefly married to Selma, Marge's sister, and briefly mayor of Springfield, between prison terms. Loves Gilbert and Sullivan and other highbrow things. Lived in Italy for a while. Has a brother who sounds uncannily like David Hyde-Pierce and acts like Frasier's brother Niles.
Sideshow Mel: The original Krusty sidekick, returning and becoming more prominent after Bob went to prison. At first he didn't talk, like Harpo or Clarabelle, using a slide whistle to communicate. He has an overly theatrical stage-English accent, Dan Castellaneta's jokey version of Bob's voice. Once a promising serious actor who regrets selling out. He's lactose-intolerant.
C. Montgomery Burns: Evil tycoon who owns the unsafe Springfield Nuclear Power Plant where Homer, Lenny, Carl and Smithers work. Speaks in an old Mid-Atlantic accent. His early life is a parody of "Citizen Kane" (Rosebud is Bobo). Doesn't know that Smithers is in love with him. Catch phrase: "Eeeeexcellent."
Waylon Smithers: Mr. Burns' personal assistant. Corporate toady and Springfield's resident closeted gay man secretly in love with his boss. Has the world's biggest Malibu Stacy doll collection. Father was an old associate of Burns' killed in an accident.
Moe Szyslak: The nasty, sad man who owns the tavern where Homer and his buddies hang out. Used to be a boxer and briefly was a successful poet and TV soap actor (after getting plastic surgery). Tried turning Moe's into a family restaurant and a hipster bar. Gets crank calls from Bart. Very lonely and slightly perverted. Once was Mrs. Krabappel's boyfriend. Name's Polish but in one episode we see (in Moe's thoughts) Moe as a child asking him why he no talka with his Italian accent no more.
Barney Gumbel: Formerly the town drunk who spent most of his time and money at Moe's, he got sober and became a chopper pilot. Used to have a trademark burp. A gifted Irish-style tenor who sang with Homer, Apu and Seymour Skinner in the Beatles parody barbershop group the B-Sharps.
Lenny: Homer's nuclear-power-plant co-worker and buddy. Sort of in love with Carl. Once got a face-lift giving him a perpetual smile. Lives in a gorgeous apartment next to a jai-alai court (the pelota hitting the fronton he shares a wall with is soothing).
Carl: The black guy at the nuclear plant, Homer's buddy and Lenny's unrequited love, and a favourite of Mr. Burns. Doesn't speak with a black accent.
Ned Flanders: Homer's nice-to-a-fault, devout Christian neighbour. Like Rev. Lovejoy he represents anything about religion the writers want to ridicule that week. The town minister is usually more easygoing and resents Ned's fanaticism. Homer regularly steals Ned's things and is jealous of his happy life. Owns the Leftorium left-handed shop at the mall. His parents were beatniks. Is actually in his 60s but looks younger thanks to his clean living. Once rented a room in his house to what turned out to be webcam porn stars. After that he tried to move to Humbleton, Pa. for the family values but wouldn't part with his moustache. Married to the late Maude and father of Rod and Todd. After Maude died he dated a Christian-pop singer and Hollywood actress. A secret Beatles fan. Catch phrases: "Hidely-ho! Okely-dokely!"
Maude Flanders: Ned's wife until she was killed when a T-shirt cannon knocked her off bleachers (it was Homer's fault). Mother of Rod and Todd. Homer was attracted to her. She was like a nicer version of Rev. Lovejoy's wife. Ned tried to have an amusement park in her memory and she's been back to haunt the show on occasion.
Principal Seymour Skinner: Born Armen Tanzarian. Was a juvenile delinquent until he joined the Army and was sent to Vietnam; he took the identity of his old sergeant. Bart's foil and former longtime boyfriend of Edna Krabappel. Lives with the real Skinner's mother who bullies him. He's also afraid of Superintendent Chalmers. A "Nanker Phelge" character meant to mock petty tyrants/bureaucrats, he's evolved over the years to sometimes show he really does care about the kids.
Edna Krabappel: Bart's teacher and thus a nemesis/target of pranks. Because Bart never really grows up he's still in her class even though at the end of one episode he barely was promoted. A frustrated woman with a healthy libido, she's Principal Skinner's former longtime girlfriend. She's a Who fan. Doesn't like it when her name is pronounced "crabapple". Mr. Krabappel walked out on her for another woman years before the show began. Like Skinner she's cynical about her job but over time seems to have softened; she's not as nasty as Lisa's teacher, Ms. Hoover.
Nelson Muntz: Once the neighbourhood bully; now one of Bart's friends, more or less. His bully friends are Jimbo and Carny. Lives with his mother in poverty. His father walked out on them; he goes nuts every time he sees a tree, thinking Papa has come back. Once dated Lisa. His secret: underneath his tough-guy façade he is a connoisseur of picking and preparing huckleberries.
Ralph Wiggum: Police Chief Clancy Wiggum's son and Lisa's classmate in Ms. Hoover's room. Not very bright, he's not allowed to use scissors and likes to eat crayons. Lisa once gave him a valentine because nobody else in class would.

Trivia answers

1. Jebediah Springfield, whose statue is in the town square wearing a Davy Crockett fur cap and buckskins. Lisa found out he was a fraud, actually a pirate on the run. An alleged quotation from him is now the town motto: "A noble spirit embiggens the smallest man." According to Ms. Hoover "embiggens" is "a perfectly cromulent word".
2. A trick question! One of the running jokes of the show is there are several American cities with the name and nobody knows where this Springfield is.
3. The Western Branch of American Reformed Presbo-Lutheranism, a clever dig at mainline Protestantism, which is all pretty much the same. According to Ned Flanders it broke with the Catholics during the 1500s at the (imaginary) Council of Lourdes over the right to come to church with wet hair, which it has since abolished.
4. Chief Wiggum.
5. Bonestorm.
6. Dr. Nick Riviera and Bumblebee Man. The first isn't obvious so don't feel bad if you didn't know. Dr. Nick has a Spanish accent: it's the actor's jokey bad impression of Desi Arnaz! Bumblebee Man of Springfield's Canal Ocho (Channel 8) makes fun of slapstick comedy on Spanish-language American television and almost always speaks in Spanish. Often the Spanish is real but not idiomatic; sometimes it's bad or fake Spanish so viewers will understand him. Once he was shown going home and actually was Hispanic; another time when he was pressed into service to read the news he turned out to be an anglophile actor.
7. Whacking Day.
8. "Daddy", voiced by Elizabeth Taylor.
9. Barnacle Bay.
10. Glenn Close.
11. The Isotopes after the town's nuclear power plant.
12. Duff.

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