Is the Simpson's The Perfect Family?

Essay by strikeapose101High School, 11th gradeA+, January 2008

download word file, 6 pages 3.0

The Simpsons The Perfect Family?The Simpsons is one of the longest running yet most controversial cartoons in television history. The show revolves around the life of a suburban family in Springfield, USA. This nuclear family consists of a father (Homer), a mother (Marge), a son (Bart), and two daughters (Lisa and Maggie) facing common problems such as Homer losing his job or Bart having trouble in school. One may question what sets a show like this apart from many other shows that depict the suburban lifestyle. Jonah Goldberg, Douglas Rushkoff and Paul Cantor are all authors of articles that describe The Simpsons as a unique show and praise it for the way it gets its message across. Still, critics believe that the show uses its characters, humor, and sarcasm to show the opposite of what a family should be like. Homer is seen as an irresponsible father who makes bad decisions, drinks beer, and loves donuts.

Bart is seen as the rebellious son who does not listen to his parents and Lisa who is seen as the "odd one" for being a smart intellectual girl. What the critics do not realize is that although The Simpsons seems to demonstrate the opposite of what a family should be like, its subtle messages about family values are actually exemplified through its characters.

Marie Winn, the author of "Television and Family Life" examines the effects of television on American parents and their children. She believes that because of television, thequality of the nuclear family life has gone down. Winn states that "it destroys the special quality that distinguishes one family from another, a quality that depends to a great extent on what a family does" (Winn 401). She insists that although watching television could be a family event, it doesn't compare to...