Why those of us who grew up with ‘The Simpsons’ are better prepared for life

Considered the most important series of the 20th century by Time magazine, fiction is disguised as cartoons to give us great lessons. We analyze its impact from the hand of the expert Lalo Tovar.

I was one of those girls who, when arriving every day from school, had to put on Antena 3 to see The Simpson. It was an impeccable ritual. I knew the dialogues by heart and used their phrases and songs with my friends. One of the ones we used to sing was the one that said “My pituitin, my pituitin, I want you to play with my …”. We sang it because we found the tone funny, without knowing what it meant. Decades later, I have understood the sexual meaning of the phrase and why Skinner took that poor student off the stage in such a bad way.

That’s the special thing about The Simpson, the great depth of his jokes. This is a simple and somewhat silly example, but the series is full of jokes that can go unnoticed on first viewing and only come to light if you look closely enough. The devastating portrait of American democracy that they make through Kang and Kodos in the Halloween VII special – “Abortion for some, American flags for others” -, Homer’s approach to the LGBT community in ‘Homer-phobia’ or the continuous marriage lessons from Homer and Marge.

The Simpson it’s a series that rewards you when you pay attention to it ”, said Matt Groening, father of what is considered the most important series of the 20th century by the magazine Time. They are more than just cartoons and have inspired people around the world. Lalo Tovar is one of them. We could introduce you as the man who knows the most about The Simpson from Spain. His passion for the yellow family has led him to write a doctoral thesis and a book. In 2021 he published I will smile for both of us. Life as a female according to Marge Simpson, an in-depth study of Marge as a representative of that ignored and submissive woman, but also revolutionary and with a lot to say.

With him we review all the teachings that the more than 30 seasons of The Simpson and how they have helped those of us who grew up with them to build values, develop a critical eye, accept failure and, above all, face life with a lot of humor.

“Three little phrases that will help you throughout your life: the first ‘Cover me!’, The second ‘Good idea, boss!’, And the third ‘I was like this when I arrived”: The values ​​that helped us build up

In essence, The Simpson they are the representation of the typical lower-middle class family. They are Americans, but their plots connect the same with someone from a town in Cuenca as they do with one from Ohio. There is no magic in it, but a great dose of reality. “The Simpson we are ourselves, that is to say, a representation of today’s society taken to satire ”, says Tovar. Over three decades, they have presented situations of all kinds that we, consciously or unconsciously, have extrapolated to our lives.

They pose situations that we can look at through them and, later, we can know how to deal with them because ‘The Simpsons’ have already told us -at least- how it is convenient that we not confront ourselves, how it is convenient that we not act in front of certain situations

As they arise from that naturalness, they are laden with defects and yet they are loved for it. Bart is a small criminal capable of committing robberies and crimes of little importance, Lisa sometimes goes over the list, Homer is all a flaw in himself … but you take a liking to them. “They accept and love each other as they are, they support each other, they build and then they go out knowing that, anyway, there will always be someone at home waiting or willing to watch television. They are people who understand that they live as they have to live, period “, analyzes Tovar.

This is the best episode of ‘The Simpsons’

We grew up seeing a family as messy, imperfect and chaotic as The Simpsons and, at the same time, happy and loving. An example that you can live fully with very little.

“The moral is: do not make an effort”: What they taught us about the perspective of failure

“Now we are always talking about mental health, stress, anxiety, the need to work 25 hours a day but also take time to spend with a partner, have children, a great house … And what they teach is that maybe it doesn’t take that much to be happy, ”says Tovar. Faced with the society of productivity and perfection are they, who are happy living in the same town all their lives, with their old friends and having each other.

They have reached this situation for their own motivations and also, why deny it, because nothing ever goes well for them. The Simpson they are doomed to belong to a lower social class and, try as they may, they will still be those Evergreen Terrace neighbors who have to choose between air conditioning or buying their prodigy daughter a saxophone.

They are a little low expectations for someone who wants to contribute something to society, but Homer is happy and shows that it does not take too much to be so


Fox

Homer and Bart watching ‘When the buildings collapse’: “Room is for one more”.

“The solution to all of life’s problems is not at the bottom of a bottle. It’s on TV! ”: The critical eye they helped us develop

Homer and Bart spend in front of the television an enormous amount of hours a day and it is not by chance that they are represented as the most useless members of the family. Lisa and Marge live their lives further away from the small screen and always go further than the two men in the house. Quite directly, Matt Groening’s series launches a brutal criticism of the media and television as a means of constructing values.

“The only thing that brings them together in the same space and keeps them serene is, precisely, sitting down to watch television, something that they tell you in the same head. That already indicates that television for them, for the society in which they live, is a constructive element of what they themselves are“, aiming Lalo Tovar,”The Simpson it is a critique of society itself and how television and the media have been placed in a predominant point without applying the filter of skepticism, looking for a speech that completes it or creating their own opinion “.

The only source they have for information is the news from Kent Brockman and what he says is what they consider correct. As always happens in the series, Lisa is the one who usually opens their eyes and shows them that there is a world beyond the screen. She represents, on countless occasions, the voice of common sense and sends the most important message to the audience.

“Do as my mother used to say: Don’t talk, don’t say anything, don’t draw attention and be strong”: What (much) Marge taught us about feminism

Marge is that motherly figure, quiet, who leaves everything ready for the rest of the family members without raising noise, always ready to give a hug, somewhat submissive … But how much did she teach us about feminism. Tovar is an expert on this subject and explains it perfectly in the book I will smile for both of usby Roca Editorial. At first glance, it may appear to be a macho female representation, when, in reality, it is the opposite.

If you listen a little more you will see that Marge is the hinge between two times, between two generations, and that precisely because there are women like Marge, today’s society is as it is. It is freer, more fair and open

“Marge, above all, is in charge of teaching her children that there are many options. They have to be valid social actors, but above all free. Mainly Lisa”, reflects the author of the book, “Marge is aware that her life is satisfactory for her, but if they let her go back, she would still choose another path. He knows that his time has passed, but his daughter’s is not. Let your daughter be free to make mistakes in any way she wants“.

She is a great figure to look at, but she must also be understood as a woman of her time. Her relationship with Homer, for example, is the result of that more traditional thought that marriage is forever and the correct attitude to certain problems is to endure.

“Marge and Homer are heirs to the same upbringing, one focused on men and the other focused on women. It is the example of the education that was given to men and women of the 50s, in a very traditional society in the interior of the United States and in a small town, in a rural setting. In fact, sometimes Marge interacts with other people who have left Springfield and have another vision. The thing is, the marriage works, despite Homer and thanks to Marge. They are happy in their own way”Says Tovar.

The intro of ‘The Simpsons’ had a continuity error for 20 years

When i saw The Simpson With my innocent elementary school girl eyes, I didn’t know that I was beginning to see the world through her eyes. Unconsciously, I was building my own mindset based on what Matt Groening’s characters were telling me. This group of screenwriters made up of philosophers, mathematicians, physicists and other geniuses who also had a gift for comedy, shaped the most important series of the 20th century and presented it as a simple cartoon fiction. Only available in its purest essence for observers … Or for anyone who wants to have a good time because, as the genius Homer Simpson taught us, “just because I don’t care doesn’t mean I don’t understand.”

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