The Untold Truth Of Homer Simpson: His Fraught Relationship With His Son

It’s not just Abe and Mona, but also Matt and Dan that he’s a son of. All three of his local gorges, chasms, and mountains have claimed him. He didn’t finish high school, but he shouted his way into a position as a nuclear technician.

The dean of a university was one of the people he injured during a sewer fight with the president. His lack of regard for others’ feelings once drove a coworker to suicide. He has won a Grammy and cites Johnny Cash as an inspiration. All of us and none of us, he is us.

Where Was the Voice Artist of Homer Born?

Homer Simpson may have been created by an Oregon native, and many of Springfield’s most recognisable names are homages to the greater Portland area, but the actor who has voiced Homer for almost 30 years, Dan Castellaneta, was born and raised in Chicago.

The Untold Truth Of Homer Simpson

Castellaneta attended Northern Illinois University after being born in Chicago’s Roseland Community Hospital and growing up in the adjacent suburb of Oak Park. In the end, he decided to take improv training at Chicago’s storied Second City theatre, which has spawned the careers of such comedic greats.

Those familiar with “The Simpsons” know that Castellaneta has a great sense of humour, but it was his sadness that landed him a part in Tracey Ullman’s ensemble. Rather than laughing at his audition for the show, she cried, she told the Los Angeles Times in 1999. “There were flashier performers that night. But I don’t like that, really.”

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The Untold Truth Of Homer Simpson

Here are some untold truth of Homer Simpson:

  • Life in Hell Comic Strip

Matt Groening’s “Life in Hell” comic strip was widely popular before he even conceived of Homer or any of the other characters in Springfield. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Groening made his way to Los Angeles as a young man to take on a variety of odd jobs and contribute music reviews to the alternative weekly magazine, the Los Angeles Reader.

He started a comic strip about anthropomorphic bunnies moaning about urban life and sent copies to his buddies in Oregon. Comics quickly became popular, and in 1980 the Los Angeles Reader started publishing them.

The Untold Truth Of Homer Simpson

A few years later, James L. Brooks, producer of “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and “Terms of Endearment,” approached Groening about doing an animated version of “Life in Hell.” The strips were planned to be used as interstitial scenes in a new show on the upstart Fox network starring British comedian Tracey Ullman.

Groening was afraid of losing the rights to his strip if it were adapted for television, so he offered Brooks a completely new idea about the escapades of a suburban American instead. His mother Margaret (or Marge), father Homer, and sisters Lisa and Maggie inspired the names of that clan.

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  • Memorable One-Liners

Bart’s memorable one-liners, such as “Don’t have a cow, man!” and “Eat my shorts,” were largely responsible for the show’s initial popularity. However, it was Homer’s own distinctive catchphrase—”D’oh!”—that eventually made its way into not only widespread cultural usage but also the Oxford English Dictionary.

In a later episode of “The Tracey Ullman Show” short, Castellaneta delivered his own rendition of the iconic catchphrase. The script originally spelled it “annoyed grunt,” and that’s how the name has been spelled in all subsequent draughts of “The Simpsons” scripts.

If Castellaneta was just given the line “annoyed grunt” to work with, where did “D’oh!” come from? The exclamation is a tribute to Scottish comedian James Finlayson, who, in the 1930s and 1940s, performed in dozens of short films starring the famed team Laurel and Hardy. As a self-censored alternative to “damn,” Finlayson’s catchphrase entailed a double take followed by an indignant “D’oooooh!”

The animation time constraints prevented Castellaneta and Groening from recreating Finlayson’s performance, so they opted for a speedier, more agitated version instead. Even within the show’s universe, the term became instantly identifiable, like in Season 5, Episode “Burns’ Heir,” in which Mr. Burns constructs a false Simpsons family.

  • Fraught Relationship of Homer and Bart

The Untold Truth Of Homer Simpson

Homer and his son Bart have a fraught relationship characterised by an overall lack of regard for one another, some occasional affection, and more than a few strangulations.

Krusty the Clown, the chain-smoking degenerate children’s entertainer whose afternoon local TV show is appointment viewing for the children of Springfield, is held in higher esteem by Bart than is his own father, especially in the early seasons of the show.

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In the initial concept, Homer and Krusty were supposed to be the same character, therefore the similarities in their designs and their polar opposite personalities are on purpose.

Traces of Homer and Krusty’s history can be found throughout the series, most notably in the sixth season episode “Homie the Clown,” in which Krusty launches a clown academy to pay off his gambling debts and Homer becomes his top pupil.

One of the greatest non-jokes in the series is when mobster Fat Tony (Joe Mantegna) arrives to collect on Krusty’s debts but mistakenly grabs the incorrect clown “Help! I seem to be having some sort of visual distortion. The highest possible rating is four Krustys!”

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