The Simpsons is one of Americas most popular television shows. It ranks as the
number one television program for viewers under eighteen years of age. However, the
ideals that The Simpsons conveys are not always wholesome, sometimes not even in
good taste. It is inevitable that The Simpsons is affecting children.
Matt Groening took up drawing to escape from his troubles in 1977. At the
time, Groening was working for the L.A. Reader, a free weekly newspaper. He began
working on Life in Hell, a humorous comic strip consisting of people with rabbit ears.
The L.A. Reader picked up a copy of his comic strip and liked what they saw. Life in
Hell gradually became a common comic strip in many free weeklies and college
newspapers across the country. It even developed a cult status. (Varhola, 1)
Life in Hell drew the attention of James L. Brooks, producer of works such as
Taxi, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and Terms of Endearment.
wanted Groening to make an animated pilot of Life in Hell. Groening chose not to do
so in fear of loosing royalties from papers that printed the strip. Groening presented
Brooks with an overweight, balding father, a mother with a blue beehive hairdo, and
three obnoxious spiky haired children. Groening intended for them to represent the
typical American family 'who love each other and drive each other crazy'. Groening
named the characters after his own family. His parents were named Homer and
Margaret and he had two younger sisters named Lisa and Maggie. Bart was an anagram
for 'brat'. Groening chose the last name 'Simpson' to sound like the typical American
family name. (Varhola, 2)
Brooks decided to put the 30 or 60 second animations on between skits on The
Tracy Ullman Show on the unsuccessful...