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Growing Up with The Simpsons: A Journey Through Pop Culture and Self-Discovery

Years ago, as I was turning 11 or was it 12, a certain yellow-hued family debuted on Fox TV. Now, as I enter my “middle ages,” I can look back fondly at all the laughs and entertainment that Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie, along with a huge cast of supporting characters, have brought me throughout my life.

The Obvious Benefits

At a quick glance, it’s easy to spot the obvious benefits of The Simpsons: laughter, emotional well-being, and a source of comfort. But what happens if we dig a little deeper? Do we learn more about ourselves by learning more about each of the characters? I have no clue. Growing up, I was never the rebellious spirit, nor was I the bookworm who valued education and studying above all else. I don’t think I was the buffoon who got himself into careless situations where a tad bit of common sense would have made them easily avoidable. I was also not the abject loyal family person who put family first.

So, Who Was I?

That’s part of the great thing about The Simpsons. While we try to compare ourselves to one of the characters, we can see and find ourselves in a multitude of them. In essence, we are all versions of The Simpsons in their entirety. I think back to their arcade video game, where you were forced to choose one of the characters to control. Each of them had their perks, but it was only by using them collectively that you were able to beat the game. Their individual strengths, when combined, outweighed their weaknesses. In life, we resemble that. We weren’t really meant to go through it alone, and even if it’s with a “family” of our own choosing, the strength given by that family will always lift us up through our toughest times.

The Pop Culture Classroom

The Simpsons are pop culture icons and will always have a place in my heart. It’s where many of us first began to notice rock ‘n’ roll legends, Hollywood stars, political figures, and sports heroes. It’s where we started to formulate our own pop culture sensibilities. The show has been a classroom for world events and cultural references, shaping our understanding and appreciation of the world around us.

A Wish for the Future

So here we are, grown up with The Simpsons, having them teach us about world events and pop culture. My only wish is that they, too, get to advance a year in their lives…sometime in my lifetime!

Final Thoughts

In the end, The Simpsons isn’t just a TV show; it’s a cultural touchstone that has helped shape who we are. Its characters, stories, and humor have provided us with more than just entertainment—they’ve given us insights into ourselves and the world around us. So, here’s to many more years of laughs, lessons, and yellow-skinned antics. Long live The Simpsons!

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Danny is a visual storyteller who is always looking for the story that each scene is trying to tell and the secret that each person is trying to hide. Danny is a film geek and video game nerd who enjoys reading and listening to as much music as possible!

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