I have to put my cards on the table right off the top. I think The Simpsons is one of the greatest television shows of all time. And I have to say that I think it is the greatest animated show ever. It's also the longest-running animated show ever. Given that it's been on now for 28 years, it makes total sense that there are going to be some errors here and there.
There have been tons of plot holes over the years in this show. Of course there have been. You can't go on for almost 30 years without having some sort of error. And it doesn't help things that every time there is a Halloween episode on the show...countless numbers of characters die or become zombies or turn into some sort of creature. Obviously, these plotlines don't exist in the regular run of the show, for the most part.
It does make me kind of sad to write a piece about how there are some issues with this show that just can't be unseen, but I think it needs to happen. I can't just pretend that there are no flaws in this crazy cartoon. So, let's scroll down and take a look at some glaring holes in one of the greatest animated shows on Earth...The Simpsons!
15 Didn't The Farmhouse Burn Down?
Do you remember when Homer decided to challenge everyone to duels by slapping them with his glove? And then someone accepted? Well, when Homer decided to go into hiding, he went to the old family farm. They then started growing Tomacco and drove all of the wildlife nearby crazy. So much so that the animals started tearing apart the old farmhouse just to get at the last plant. But there's something messed up here. Seasons before this, the old family farmhouse was already burned down in a flashback. Which means that it was burned to the ground long before Homer started slapping people with his glove. Miraculously, the farmhouse seems to have rebuilt itself to look like an old dump. That's pretty interesting.
14 Driving To Alaska Without Filling Up?
In the Simpsons movie, there is an interesting part where Homer learns a new skill: riding a dirt bike around a spherical cage. He learns pretty quickly and ends up winning a truck for it. That's a pretty sweet deal, I think. But now, with no money and only the gas that's in the truck already, they drive from either Ohio, Nevada, Maine, or Kentucky and head toward Alaska. There's no cut with them driving through Canada, they can't stop for gas because they have no money, and they end up in Alaska without any issues...and then they're given $1000 just for showing up! But I'm still really wondering how with no money, they managed to get themselves from Springfield (in whatever state they're in) to Alaska on one tank of gas.
13 What Happened To Lisa's Boyfriend Colin?
Do you remember in the Simpsons movies when Lisa meets an Irish boy named Colin who loves everything she does and who plays "guitar, piano, trumpet, drums, and bass"? She clearly falls for him and they are holding hands and everything by the end of the film. They are clearly made for each other. But he only shows up in two episodes after the film and is never heard from again otherwise. I think they gave up on a pretty crucial storyline that they could have used to build Lisa's self-esteem for a change. I mean, they would eventually have to have them break up or kill him off or something since Lisa's whole character is built on being smart and unappreciated, but it would make sense to keep him around for a while. If you're going to use him at all in the show, then actually use him.
12 How Do The Buildings Keep Moving In Springfield!?
I guess it shouldn't be any surprise to anyone that not only does Springfield keep moving but so do the buildings as well. In the movie, Moe's Tavern and the church are set right next to each other. Now, correct me if I'm wrong but I'm pretty sure that's not normally the case. If it were, I think Homer would always find a reason to escape church service on Sunday to go have a Duff with Moe and the gang. This plot hole actually has an explanation to some extent. The writers and creator actually admitted in the commentary for the film that they changed around the location of these two buildings solely for the purpose of the joke they wanted to make. The whole idea is that all of the drunks become believers and all of the believers become drunks.
11 How Is Dr. Nick Still Alive?
Alright, look. I know that in the Treehouse of Horror episodes plenty of characters die and come back to life in various ways. I know that these episodes don't have any basis in the regular running of the show. But what about the movie? Doesn't it have some sort of solid base in the regular run of the show? Isn't that important? It seems like it might not be though. Dr. Nick, right at the end of the movie, is crushed by a gigantic chunk of glass from the dome while everyone is celebrating. His very last words are "Bye everybody". But there is no straight line from there to the series. Bleeding Gums Murphy stayed dead (other than as a ghost with Mufasa and Darth Vader). Maud Flanders stayed dead (other than as a demon in a Treehouse of Horror). So how is it that Nick got to keep going?
10 Doesn't Ralph Like Men Now?
From the very opening of the Simpsons movie, Ralph has come out of the closet. All it took was for Bart to skateboard by him in the nude. Now, there's nothing wrong with that at all. He's welcome to be with whomever he wants. But that does seem to contradict everything we've known about Ralph so far. He used to date Lisa, and he's had other girls on the side as well. And I'm sure he will continue to have girls around in the future. But since the movie has come out, there hasn't been an episode to show that Ralph has actually committed to this new change. Or that the creators have really committed to this joke. It would be interesting to have a regular character on the show who is gay. It would shake things up a bit, rather than just throwing one in there every once in a while when wandering through the steel mill.
9 How Does Lisa Not Know What These Are?
Alright, so a lot of the plot holes do seem to come up in the Treehouse of Horror episodes. But this one is just ridiculous. Lisa is the smartest fourth grader in the world. She knows pretty well everything. That's not a shock to anyone. Her whole shtick is being a know-it-all who will get to the bottom of anything. So how is it that she doesn't know what these are in the window? Or should I say how does she not know that they are dead? When walking by the window with the dead rabbits strung up to be sold for dinner, Lisa actually asks Marge "Mom, are those rabbits dead?" How could they make Lisa that stupid for one second of an episode?
8 Why Didn't They Just Dig Under The Dome?
Ok, so it seems a lot of the plot holes have to do with the movie as well. I know a lot of jokes were made just because it was a stand-alone movie and they wanted to be able to get as many cracks as they could. But this is too much. Springfield is covered by a dome (which everyone can breathe through). Professor Frink has a drill that can cut through anything that he leaves just outside of the area the dome drops on. And the only way in or out of the dome is the sinkhole in the Simpson's sandbox, or the small hole right at the top of the dome. But...why not just grab some backhoes and shovels and dig under it? It seems like a pretty easy thing. Sure, the dome is a little wide, but it wouldn't take more than a couple of days.
7 Principal Skinner Is Actually Armin Tamzarian
You might remember the episode where it comes out that Principal Skinner was actually a street thug named Armin Tamzarian. He went to Nam and ended up taking the identity of the real Principal Skinner after he was believed to be killed. The citizens of Springfield decided, after learning the truth, that they would rather have the fake Skinner than the real one. Even Skinner's own mother preferred the fake. So, they tied up the real Skinner and sent him on his way. Judge Snyder then threatened the people of Springfield with torture if they ever brought up Skinner's identity again. "This has lead to many confusing jokes in later years such as the one from "Boy Meets Curl" showing Agnes Skinner complaining about how Seymour kicking her in the womb at the 1952 Summer Olympics at Helsinki made her lose the Gold Medal in pole-vaulting," says Whatculture.
6 When Did Smithers' Colors Change?
Only those of you who are hardcore fans or have gone back to the very beginning of the show relatively recently will remember that Smithers wasn't always his usual yellow self. He used to be brown and blue instead of yellow and grey. Now, to be fair to the creators, this change was made very early on in the first season. If my memory serves, he was only blue and brown in the first episode of two but still...I'm sure more than a few people wondered if this was a Michael Jackson situation or if the creators were being somehow racist. I think ultimately they probably realized that the character was such that he needed to be the pallid yellow color he is today in order to really be Mr. Burns' lackey. No real shock there.
5 Homer Is Infertile, But Marge Doesn't Care!
This is a very strange plot hole that you'd think would be dealt with pretty easily. As early as season three, the Simpsons have made mention that Homer has become sterile because of all the time working for Mr. Burns at the nuclear power plant. A few years ago, there was an episode where Marge was apparently taking birth control and Bart decided it would be a fun joke to swap out the pills for Tic Tacs. That's a pretty crazy idea for a prank. But it shouldn't matter since Homer is sterile anyway. If he's shooting blanks, then there's no harm. But...considering that Homer is shooting blanks, I think it was a pretty silly idea to have an episode where Marge decides to try for a fourth kid. She already knows that she can't!
4 Does Bart Have Allergies? Or Is He Faking?
It would totally be in Bart's personality to just make up allergies. I'm sure he's done it in a few different episodes. But there are a couple of episodes where Marge states his allergies as well. One of which is butterscotch as well as imitation butterscotch. That's fine. Just stay away from butterscotch, right? Well, apparently not. Even though Marge is the one to tell everyone that this is one of Bart's allergies, she later decides to make a special dinner for Bart and Millhouse. What is it? It's butterscotch chicken. No word of a lie. So...I have to wonder then just how she managed to miss this crucial fact since she even knows each character's blood type as well (which she mentions in the same episode she first mentions Bart's allergies).
3 Where Is Springfield Actually Located?
This might be something that has confused some viewers for years, but it always seems that the town of Springfield is constantly moving (like when everyone actually moved the town physically because of all the trash and flooding that Homer caused as garbage commissioner). And even if it's not always moving around, it has always been a continuing joke on the show that the writers will not reveal the state in which this Springfield was actually settled in. Apparently, creator Matt Groening once said in an interview that Springfield was named after Springfield, Oregon. But then people took that as the actual location. Groening then had to qualify that he didn't mean that was the actual city. In the movie, Flanders tells us that Springfield borders "Ohio, Nevada, Maine, and Kentucky".
2 How Did Lisa Not Get Her Invite To Mars?
There is a Treehouse of Horror episode where the world is coming to an end and only the biggest celebrities and smartest people are gathered together to take a rocket to Mars to resettle the human race. The interesting thing is that it seemed most of these celebrities and intellectuals had been sent an invite. They all clearly knew to be on that ship. But Lisa had no idea. She just found her way there with her family. She was on the list, so why wasn't she told about it? It's pretty lucky for her, Marge, and Maggie that they came across the spaceship. Of course, Bart and Homer didn't make the list and were sent in a different ship to the Sun. But I still think that if they really wanted Lisa to help colonize Mars, they should've told her and not chanced her finding them. She's smart, but she is only eight years old.
1 Wasn't Homer Already The Internet King?
In season 12, Homer decides that it's time for him to get a computer because he misses an email and doesn't get the memo that he could have had the day off work. I know that when Homer first got his computer seasons before this episode, he didn't really know anything about the internet. "Oh, they have internet for computers now". But after becoming the Internet King with his company Compu-Global-Hyper-Mega-Net company (which was bought out by Bill Gates in the show) you'd think he might know at least what an e-mail is. But apparently, he forgets everything he ever knew about the internet and computers. He even forgets that he has a computer in the first place. I mean, I know he's pretty dumb, but jeez!