It was 30 years ago today, back in April of 1987, when Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie first encountered the viewing public via The Tracy Ullman show’s first ever The Simpsons short. The two-minute sketch would go on to spawn not only 48 follow-ups of the like before turning into one of the most iconic television series of all time. In celebration of these past 30 years of Simpsons glory, we at the Nerdist Hive Mind™ attempted bring you our favorite quotable gags from the many corners of Springfield.
Choosing our favorite Simpsons lines was no easy task. Breaking things up by character leads to hard choices of who to include, sticking with the main Simpsons family leaves out way too many character gags, and breaking it up by season is futile because after being on TV for so long, it’s just too much content to sift and sort. In the end, we decided to go with our gut and share the moments we immediately go to when posed with the simple question, “What’s your favorite line from The Simpsons?”
“Boo-urns” has pretty much replaced all other negative responses in our lives. Using what is likely the most popular Hans Moleman quote serves as a sort of secret code for whomever is cool enough to know the reference.
“Everything’s coming up Milhouse!”
Is there a better sad sack than Milhouse Van Houten? We think not. Counting dry pant cuffs as a win is sad to begin with. Doing so with such exuberance in what seems like the high point of his life is even worse.
“It Tastes Like Burning”
Oh sweet and lovable Ralph Wiggum, we could fill a dozen articles with the wonderful things he’s said and done over the years. His devil-may-care attitude toward life is always a treat because he embodies everyone’s first or second thoughts. We all, to some degree, want to live in the moment like Ralph does. We want to eat the berries, we never want to say “goose”, and — deep down — we want to be choo-choo-chosen.
The ability to hit the reset button from episode to episode and the fact that all the characters are nearly indestructible (Homer especially) is something we’ve always loved about The Simpsons. In any other show, a pick-axe to the forehead would be horrifying, but it’s a delight when it happens to Homer.
“Worst. Episode. Ever.”
Whether we’d like to admit it or not, Comic Book Guy has often been our spirit animal. We’d be hard-pressed to find someone who works here or frequents our site who hasn’t used this go-to phrase to show disapproval of something.
“Stupid Sexy Flanders!”
How do you spell sexy? “N.E.D.”
“Don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos”
With every election it seems this quote gets more relevant. All the appearances by Kang and Kodos usually end up fairly quotable but none so much as this.
“My name is Mr. Burns”
Quite possibly the oldest on our list, this scene sure has some staying power. If you were to ask a certain age group of people to all say the words “I don’t know”, we wonder just how many would perfectly match Homer’s inflection in this clip.
There’s so much to love about the innocence of Rod and Todd Flanders. In a world full of temptation and bad behavior, they remain saint-like compared to everyone else in Springfield. They trust and a follow their father so implicitly in this clip that they don’t skip a beat praying for Bart’s “bountiful” private parts…amen.
There are likely dozens of clips that begin as a set up for a “Homer is fat” joke that flip to a “Homer is stupid” joke but this one tickles us in just the right way. Pronouncing the word “Gime” has, at some point or another, worked its way into our vernacular.
“I am so smart!”
What’s not to love about this clip? Homer, so confident in his actions, sets fire to his home and misspells “smart” while ostentatiously gloating about how smart he thinks he is. This moment is pure Simspons perfection.
“Who the hell is ‘Mister’ Flanders?”
The more we dig through the decades of Simpsons clips, the more we realize that most of the great quotes come out of Homer’s lovable dumb head. He’s clearly never heard anyone refer to Flanders in this way and it takes him a moment to get a grip on the idea. It should come as no surprise though, Homer’s never been too good with names.
“I think he’s talking to you”
Homer’s inability to grasp a situation as simple as responding to another name is met with quite possibly one of the most versatile Simpsons quotes ever. Whispering “I think he’s talking to you” has become a stand-by response for shirking duties of all sorts, deflecting questions, and generally being a pain in the butt for anyone trying to address us by name.
There’s no way we even scratched the surface of the “best” lines from a show for a number of reasons. First, there are just so damn many. Compiling anything near what could be considered perfect — hell, even an adequate — list is a Sisyphean task. Secondly, this is all subjective in the best possible way.
We implore you to take to the comments and share your favorite moments from the show! Then, once your 13-day binge of the 600 episodes is complete, return and share the ones that slipped your mind or have become new favorites!
We can imagine sitting through that much television is likely ill-advised but come on,
Speaking of cartoon favorites from the ’90s, here are 7 little known facts about Space Jam