Homer Simpson

Homer Jay Simpson is one of the main characters in the animated television series The Simpsons. Homer is the husband of Marge Simpson and the father of Bart Simpson, Lisa Simpson, and Maggie Simpson. Although he is often portrayed as gluttonous, lazy or simple-minded, there are times where he has displayed amazing intelligence. Homer is a caring father and husband. In the years since The Simpsons first appeared on television, he has evolved into the personality of a loveable oaf. Homer has become a popular character and a famous icon in the American culture. He is voiced by Dan Castellaneta, who changed Homer's voice that he used in The Tracy Ullman Shorts and in the first season, to what it is today because of Homer's emotional nature.

Homer Simpson embodies a number of negative, working class, American stereotypes: he has a low-level job, he is crude and fairly uneducated, overweight, intolerant, inept, and a borderline alcoholic. He also has a loose sense of reality. On the other hand, he sometimes is unpredictably adaptable, quick-witted and capable. Furthermore, in spite of his apparently blue-collar status, he has had a number of remarkable adventures, even journeying into outer space.

Homer Simpson popularized the annoyed grunt "D'oh!" (made memorable through Dan Castellaneta's distinctive voice work), which began as an abbreviated form of Jimmy Finlayson's "Dooooh" from the films of Laurel and Hardy. This modern interjection has found enough popular acceptance to be included in the Oxford English Dictionary.

In 2002, Homer Simpson placed #2 on TV Guide's Top 50 Greatest Cartoon Characters of all time, only beaten by Bugs Bunny. In 2005, Homer Simpson was listed as number 5 on Bravo's 100 Greatest TV Characters, beating out beloved and respected characters like Columbo, Frasier Crane, Hawkeye Pierce, and James Kirk. He is one of only four cartoon characters to be on the list, along with Eric Cartman (#19) and Rocky & Bullwinkle (#54).

Matt Groening has indicated that Homer is named after and loosely based on his own father, Homer Groening, who also gives his name to Groening's first son.

Homer was born and raised in Springfield and is the son of Abraham "Abe" J. Simpson and Mona Simpson and has a half-brother, Herb Powell, who was an automobile manufacturer before Homer ruined his business. Homer rebuilds his relationship with Herb by allowing him to stay with his family where Herb invents a machine which translates baby speech to understandable human language thereby rebuilding his fortune. Homer also has a half-sister, Abbie, who is the result of an affair between Abe Simpson and a British woman whom Abe met whilst stationed in Britain during World War II. Homer is also nephew to Abraham's brother, Cyrus who is mentioned in Simpsons Christmas Stories.

Homer married Marjorie Bouvier, who goes by the name "Marge" Simpson, and fathered three children with her: Bartholomew (Bart), Lisa, and Margaret(Maggie).

He frequents Moe's Tavern, which is owned and operated by Moe, with his friends Barney Gumble, Carl Carlson, and Lenny Leonard, to enjoy a mug of his favourite beverage, Duff beer.

Homer appears to have other relatives, such as his uncle Chet, owner of a shrimp company, and a first cousin Stanley who shoots birds at an airport.

According to comments made on Simpsons DVD commentary tracks by the show's writers and producers, Homer's age was initially 36, but as the writers aged, they found that Homer looked and acted much older, so they changed his age to 38, which they now consider official. All episodes between seasons 1 - 10 that mention his age say he is 36, but episodes in seasons 10-13 mention that he is 38 or 39. To add to the confusion, in seasons 14-17 claim Homer again at age 36.

Homer does not appear to have a single age as the writers of the show have changed his date of birth in various shows. For example, in one episode Bart and Lisa mention that Homer was born on January 12th, but on various other episodes Homer has been given birthdates such as May 10th, 1955, May 12th, 1956 or even 17-23-56. In another episode Homer mentions that he is a Taurus supporting his claims to be born in May, but in a later episode, Homer has claimed to be a Capricorn, supporting the claims of being born in January. In a further episode it is mentioned that Homer graduated High School in 1974 making it probable he was born in 1956..

Homer was raised solely by his father after his mother left him at the approximate age of six, at school he slid through his classes and apparently graduated from high school by illictly changing grades, despite failing to pass Remedial Science some 20 years later. Prior to graduation, he was told he would be a "shoo-in" for college, but was distracted by a dog with a ham before he could sign his application form, which would have granted him automatic admittance to college. His senior yearbook reveals a lack of interest in sports and activities, and his quote was "I can't believe I ate the whole thing". During high school, Homer fell in love with Marge Bouvier, whom he would later marry (though both would later learn that they had first met as children at summer camp).

Homer's personality is one of intense stupidity, laziness, explosive anger and emotional reactions. He also suffers from a short attention span which complements his intense (albeit short-lived) passion for hobbies, enterprises and various causes. Although by nature an exceedingly lazy man, he appears to be capable of exerting tremendous effort toward something for a short period of time. Homer says of himself, "When I'm passionate about something, I see it through to the end." For example, he converts his garage into a bar to spite Moe, the bartender; spent a whole episode studying and emulating Thomas Edison; convinced all of Springfield that the Rapture was imminent; and attempted to expose a plot to trade Springfield's baseball team interstate by going on a hunger strike.

Homer is also prone to becoming very emotional. For example, he becomes very envious of his neighbours, the Flanders, is easily enraged at his son, Bart, and is repeatedly physically abusive towards him.

While Homer has repeatedly upset his family and caused all sorts of mayhem in Springfield, these events are more often caused by either his explosive temper or a lack of foresight. Except in the case of his hatred for Ned Flanders, Homer's actions are usually unintentional.

He has also shown himself capable of being a surprisingly good father, husband and friend; selling his ride on the Duff blimp to enter Lisa in a beauty pageant to feel better about herself; giving up his chance at wealth so Maggie could keep a beloved teddy bear; using a nuclear pile to threaten a crooked businessman who swindled Bart into giving him his money back; giving up his dream job at the Bowling Alley to return to work at the Nuclear Power Plant in order to afford his third (and favorite) child; even saving Ned Flanders from ruin by informing people about Ned's business.

Homer has a sense of humor similar to Mel Brooks. Homer tends to find the misfortune of others funny; for example, he thinks the loneliness of his father and Marge's mother is funny, and laughs hysterically at things such as a man getting hit in the groin with a football.

Homer can also be extremely jealous and an attention seeker, often leading to fist fights. An example would be his fight with former President George H. W. Bush. After being the center of attention in a yard sale, Homer's thunder is stolen when Bush and his entourage move in across the street. Unhappy with his attention being diverted elsewhere, Homer creates a hostile situation with the former President after Bush has spanked Bart for shredding his autobiography. This leads to an all out brawl between the two families.

He is a chronic petty thief, bordering on kleptomania, stealing everything from TV trays to power tools and air conditioners from Ned Flanders. He has also stolen golf balls from the local driving range, coffee mugs, pens and computers from work, and beer mugs from Moe's Tavern. He is also known to go through his neighbors' trash, scavenging such odds and ends as coathangers, copper wire, old newspapers, and estrogen medicine.

Homer has great interest in classic rock acts such as The Beatles, Grand Funk Railroad, Cheap Trick, Queen, The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, KISS, The Who and Pink Floyd. In one episode, he revealed his lifelong dream to become a rock star, which was fulfilled when he attended the Rolling Stones Rock 'N' Roll camp and met the group. This eventually led to his temporary group membership and an appearance at one of their concerts.

In Homer's Barbershop Quartet we discover that, in 1985, Homer was the leader of the Be Sharps, a phenomenally successful barbershop quartet, featured on lunchboxes, posters, and so forth. After winning a Grammy, though, the group broke up over creative differences and waning popularity.

Homer works as a safety inspector at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant in Sector 7G. He spends much of his time dozing and eating doughnuts, but his job is repeatedly saved by fortuitous circumstances. In the episode "Homer's Enemy", Frank Grimes points out the fact that accidents have doubled and meltdowns have tripled every year since Homer became safety inspector, but this is dismissed by colleagues who like Homer enough to want to keep him around. Homer was only hired after marching into Burns' office and telling him that he would be the perfect spineless employee. Impressed with Homer's lack of will, Burns immediately hired him. Homer once said that Mr. Burns hasn't fired him even though he "caused three meltdowns and a one China Syndrome".

During the episode "King Sized Homer", Homer becomes obese so that he can get on disability welfare, having a computer installed in his house so he can perform his job there. During this sequence, it becomes clear that Homer has no knowledge of several seemingly critical procedures which should take place routinely. Despite his stupidity in various episodes, he saves the power plant from substantial meltdowns.

Homer is not the only incompetent employee at the nuclear plant; others hold cockfights, play chess on company time, remove emergency procedure posters to make get-well cards, and scream and panic during meltdown alerts and fire drills.

He has sometimes been seen in other occupations, often for only one episode for a variety of reasons such as being fired or quitting his nuclear plant job.

Sometimes The Simpsons features episodes, or sections of episodes, set in the future. During these segments Homer is shown as pretty much the same in the future as he is in the present. Examples of this are "Lisa's Wedding", "Bart to the Future", and "Future-Drama".

Homer generally seems to be an Independent, and usually falls somewhere in between Republican and Democrat. In "Sideshow Bob Roberts" he votes for Bob Terwilleger over Joe Quimby, but is seen at Quimby headquarters. Also, in "Two Bad Neighbors" he befriends Gerald Ford, and hates George H.W. Bush, though this is more of a personal enmity (and Bush hates him just as much).

In "The Homer They Fall", when Moe tells how his boxing career tanked due to getting knocked out 40 times in a row and also "politics," Homer memorably grumbles "Lousy Democrats". In "Homer the Great", Homer takes Grandpa Simpson's Communist card, so he could be considered a communist and in another episode, he stated that "in theory, communism works. In theory". Many people bill Homer as a Democrat, like Matt Groening, who, in one Life in Hell comic, where Bongo writes the lists for and against the existence of God, he puts Republicans on the "Against" list.

Homer also once screamed at a televion broadcast of Sideshow Bob, "Pinko! Go back to Massachusetts!" In Japan, he expressed dissatisfaction with the family's table at the American-themed restaurant, complaining that they got stuck with "lousy Tax-a-chusetts" when they were seated at a Massachusetts-shaped table.

In at least one episode, Homer claims to not be a registered voter, and in another he let Bart fill out an absentee ballot on his behalf.

More recently, Homer has also voiced his opposition to President George W. Bush - Although he doesn't mention him by name, in a 2005 episode he launches into a political rant: "...America's latest military quagmire. Where will it be? North Korea? Iran? Anything’s possible with Commander Cuckoo-Bananas in charge!"

Homer's birth weight was given in Bart's Friend Falls in Love as 9 pounds and 6 ounces. During the normal time period in which the Simpsons is based, Homer stands at 6 feet, and at one point weighed 261 pounds but decided to go on a diet to reach his current weight, 239 pounds. Homer's weight once reached 315 pounds in order to get out of work by being classified as "disabled". The writers of the episode admit that Homer's appearance suggests that he is much heavier than his 'official' weight suggests.

Homer has been bald since the mid 1980s, mostly due to the fact that every time Marge became pregnant and had a child Homer would have a nervous breakdown and tear out large portions of his hair. However, another explanations of his hair loss is that it was due to an Army experiment. He did briefly manage to fully regain all his hair in one episode using a hair re-growth formula, although this was not permanent, however it did show that his natural hair colour was chocolate brown.

Although he only has two hairs remaining on top of his head, he has a combover. On several occasions, he has also lost these last two hairs including one episode where Mr. Burns pulled them out. Another episode saw him grow two more hairs to complement his usual two while Bart was at summer camp, thus removing his main source of stress.

His beard, while usually shaved, remains a constant, rough, '5 o'clock shadow'. On several occasions, his beard has been shown growing back within moments of being shaved. He has also let it grow out fully several times. It is revealed in the episode Three Gays of the Condo that he also will resort to using spray-on muzzle directly after shaving for the 5 o'clock shadow look.

Homer has had 2 hair styles. The first was made up of "U"'s (right-side up and upside down) around the back. Homer's hairstyle was changed by Matt Groening because "it was faster to draw". Homer's current hairstyle is made up of /\/\/\/\ lines around the back. On a side view of Homer's head, two of these bumps (/\/\) and the shape of his ear make up the letters MG, for Matt Groening.

Homer is known for his rapacious appetite. His trademark food addiction is doughnuts, but Homer likes many other foods as well. He drinks his favorite beverage, Duff Beer, both at home and at Moe's Tavern.

His love of food doesn't stop at edible food. In one episode, he spends weeks eating a gigantic hoagie long after it goes bad and in another he eats obviously spoiled sushi, resulting in his being rushed to hospital. He has also eaten crab juice, Play-Doh, flowers, Vaseline, and dirt. He has resorted to testing the effectiveness of Plutonium by rubbing the substance into his gums.

Homer also has his own special recipe for his "patented" out-of-this-world space-age Moon Waffles, which are made by putting a bag of caramel cubes, a large serving of waffle batter and a bottle of "Liquid Smoke" into a waffle iron, cooking it till it's burnt, wrapping the misshapen "waffle" around a stick of butter and placing the concoction on a toothpick (and/or shish kebab poker)

In episode 69, when Marge developed a gambling addiction, Homer tried to make a breakfast of cloves, a frozen pie crust, and Tom Collins mix, which, despite his love for food, he was completely disgusted with.

Homer responds to seeing food by drooling, by making excited poses, or by saying "Mmm" and then the name of the food about which he is thinking such as the trademark Mmm...Doughnuts. Like his "D'oh", this has been adopted as a popular snowclone, substituting various items in place of "doughnuts".

Because of (or perhaps in spite of) his vast medical history, Homer is incredibly lucky to be alive. He gains an extra 76 pounds on top of his already obese frame to get on disability welfare in the "King-Size Homer". Due to his heart problem brought about by his obesity, Homer once required a quadruple bypass surgery. He has broken almost every bone in his body, been shot numerous times, been hit by multiple automobiles, twice fallen all the way down Springfield Gorge, and received countless cuts and bruises (both major and minor), frequently to the cranium. He appears to have developed a near superhuman tolerance to pain and injury, and he is able to quickly heal whenever he is hurt. He has also apparently been rendered sterile from prolonged exposure to toxic materials at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant. Homer also, against his will, gave his father one of his kidneys.

Homer also suffers from several congenital conditions, including a male "Simpson stupidity gene", finger stubbiness (abnormally short and thick fingers) and the "Simpson butt", a large rear end which requires him to wear "balloon seated" pants. Homer also sometimes appears to have far-sighted vision, requiring the use of reading glasses when reading a book or newspaper. He has also used contact lenses which have possibly replaced his glasses.

In addition, he has what Dr. Hibbert calls "Homersimpsonitis" whereby he has a cushioning layer of fluid around his brain that protects his head from injury (this allowed him a short-lived career as a boxer). Following his brief stint as a Zoo Performer, where he rode a unicycle around a stage of live cobras and venom-filled cobra robots, he experienced night terrors which he screamed about.

Homer has a vacuous mind, but he is still able to retain a great amount of knowledge about very specific subjects. He shows small bursts of astonishing foresight, memory, creativity, and fluency with many languages in nearly every episode. These bursts, however, are almost always temporary, constantly changing, and frequently self-serving. Among other examples, in one episode, he poses the question "You guys are commies? Then why am I seeing rudimentary free markets springing up everywhere?" to a Chinese adoption agent. In another, he exhibits considerable knowledge of Iranian Ayatollahs. Homer also has an encyclopedic knowledge of U.S. Supreme Court Justices. Even further, when Lisa created a perpetual motion machine, he told her to respect the Laws of Thermodynamics, one of which includes a clause that makes perpetual motion machines unreal.

In certain episodes he has displayed a polished talent for singing and song-writing, which won him a Grammy with his Barbershop quartet the "Be Sharps." His musical abilities have reoccurred in other episodes where he has played the piano, classical guitar and the trombone.

Homer’s brief periods of intelligence are overshadowed by much longer and more consistent periods of ignorance, forgetfulness and stupidity.

Homer has an IQ of 55 (however an IQ lower than 60 means one is unable to talk properly) and dropping, which is due to his hereditary "Simpson Genes", his alcohol problem, exposure to radioactive waste, repetitive cranial trauma, and the presence of a crayon in the frontal lobe of his brain that remained lodged there after inserting sixteen crayons up his nose as a child.

It has been suggested in some episodes that Homer's normal functions do not require the use of his brain, as Homer has at times entered into debates against his own brain. Occasionally, a specific body part is portrayed debating with his brain, such as his face, stomach, or liver. In one notable scene Homer's brain actually leaves his body through boredom, causing him to collapse.

Homer is inclined to retreat into fantasy. In one episode, he fantasizes about riding the atomic bomb (à la Slim Pickens in the film Dr. Strangelove). In another episode, he fantasizes about primitive black and white cartoon characters dancing to the tune of "Turkey in the Straw" (à la Steamboat Willie). In one noted episode, he daydreams of going to Germany, "the land of chocolate".

In one episode, Homer's IQ is boosted to 105 after the aforementioned crayon is removed from his brain. However, his new personality alienates him from his friends, which drives his decision to have the crayon reinserted.

Homer's stupidity often embarrasses Bart and Lisa. They once say that it is sad that Krusty is ashamed of his Jewish roots, but when Homer comes into the room with a plunger on his head, they ask each other what they will change their names to when they grow up and both have already decided. Bart seems harder on Homer about being stupid and enjoys pointing it out to him; whilst Lisa is easier on Homer, although she sometimes loses her patience with him. Bart and Lisa also know Homer's stupidity in and out. One time when Bart is told he has to take Homer on a river rafting trip, he has an image of Homer wearing the map as a sailor’s hat. Sure enough Homer folds the map into a hat and wears it on his head (which causes them to get lost when it blows away).

As with all things, Homer's knowledge and appreciation of religion is lacking, and he invents or distorts his religious beliefs to suit the needs of a particular moment. He defends his own religion to avoid going to church on Sundays and going to work on religious holidays. In retribution for his sins, Homer's house catches fire, so he recants in fear of an angry God. He is a Christian ("Save me Jebus!"). At other times he has formed his own religion and even worshipped a waffle. Also, he thinks little of church itself. He calls Reverend Lovejoy, "Captain What's-His-Name" and tends to fall asleep in church. Although in one episode he asks the family to sit and pray. In the episode when Marge is forced to join a rehab center, he has a fake bible with a flask of liquor inside and he asks the clerk if he can read from the bible and he opens it and takes a swig, exclaiming "No wonder people call it the good book!"

Homer is (usually) a Presbylutheran, which is the name of the branch of Christianity practiced by most of Springfield. Ned Flanders explains that it separated from Roman Catholicism centuries ago over the right for parishioners to come to church with wet hair, a right they later renounced. He has also been a hedonist, a Stonecutter, a Movementarian (a parody of Raëlism and Scientology), and a Catholic.

After seeing the movie Left Below, a parody of the novel Left Behind, Homer tries twice to predict the time and place of the Rapture. The first time, the citizens of Springfield believe him and follow him, but find no Rapture. The second time he makes the correct prediction but no one believes him, so Homer goes to heaven alone. He convinces God to delay the Rapture in order to be with his family. He also states in one episode that God is his "favorite fictional character".

Homer attended school in Springfield, but he never graduated from high school, which was discovered when Marge noticed that he didn't get an invitation to their high school reunion. He later earned a GED. When caught during an employee inspection of the power plant, Homer had to take a nuclear physics course at Springfield University.

"Guy incognito" is a character who looks exactly like Homer, with the exception that Guy has a mustache. He can be seen in the episode "Fear of flying".

Due to the successful nature of The Simpsons, Homer has been an influeguynce in various areas of society for example through the introduction of the word D'oh into the Oxford English Dictionary'.

Homer Simpson has, over time, been increasingly used for the promotion of products, including Butterfinger, Doritos, Intel, Reebok, 1-800-COLLECT, Winchell's Donuts, Church's Chicken, and Burger King. He has also appeared in a MasterCard television commercial with other classic characters, such as Apu and Moe.

Homer's likeness is used, along with the other characters of The Simpsons, in order to promote the show via television, newspaper and radio advertising as well as merchandise featuring him or one of his catchphrases.

Homer sometimes makes cameo appearances in other television shows, as himself. For example, he appears briefly in the Family Guy episode "PTV" where the opening credits of The Simpsons and Naked Gun are parodied, and in an episode of Duckman.

His appearances aren't limited to cartoons either, he has also appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman, giving the top 10 reasons why he was excited to be on the show.

Homer also appears in many of the various Simpsons video games as well as in the Simpsons Comics.Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts.
Virtual Magic is a human knowledge database blog. Text Based On Information From Wikipedia, Under The GNU Free Documentation License. Copyright (c) 2007 Virtual Magic. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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