The Simpsons will soon be wrapping their 27th season and I seem to have the same thought as everyone else... Weren't the Simpsons great back in the day? It's no secret that the show pretty much lost its mojo many years and seasons ago but we can never forget a time when the Simpsons made us laugh, made us cry and actually taught us a few important lessons as children. Not lessons like do well in school or be a straight arrow, I'm talking about the lessons Simpsons taught us that we could use through our childhood well into our adult years. These lessons are as follows:
1. Despite your rivalries, you will always love your siblings
Brothers and sisters will always have a rivalry relationship. Constantly competing who gets the TV remote, who does Mom and Dad like best, and who's better at playing games or sports. Bart and Lisa are no exception to this rule. However, this doesn't ever stop them from forgetting the fact that they do love each other. In the episode "Lisa's first word", it was shown that Bart did not take kindly to another child entering his home, competing for the love of his parents. Bart even contemplates running away from home, until Lisa utters her first word: "Bart". When Bart asks why he was her first word, Marge explains that it's because Lisa adores him and looks up to him.
In the episode, "Lisa on Ice", Lisa discovers that she has a gift for playing goalie in hockey. She eventually joins a peewee team and ends up putting herself in a rivalry with Bart who plays for the opposite team. They get in fights off the ice and their parents and coaches constantly say and do things to keep the rivalry going. When the championship game arrives, the game becomes tied and Bart has to shootout with Lisa in the goal. The audience cheers for them to keep going but then the two start having sweet flashbacks of them helping each other out and loving each other. In the end, the two throw down their gloves and hug it out. You may fight, but deep down you truly do love each other.
2. Your parents had a completely different life before you were born
Its hard looking at your mother and father as anything more or less as just your mother or father. They're just your embarrassing, lame and totally out of touch parents who don't understand you. However, did you ever think about what they were like before you were born? Did they have dreams or aspirations? Did they make the same mistakes as you or worse ones? In episode one of the fifth season, we learn that Homer tried to make it as a barbershop quartet back in 1985 with Apu, Principal Skinner and Barney.
Fame was, of course, too hard to handle for the four singers and the group eventually split. Other episodes also showed that Homer was a party boy back in school, who got in trouble constantly by authority and his father. Marge was shown to be one of the brightest students back in school, where she met Homer, who worked very hard for a good career in the future. However, after getting pregnant too early, she was forced into becoming a homemaker to take care of her three children. Sometimes you really do forget that your parents were just as stupid, crazy and hopeful as you were.
3. Sometimes you have to make hard sacrifices for the ones you love
This might be one that only parents will understand but its still a hard lesson to learn nonetheless. In the episode "Maggie makes three" Homer tells the story of when Maggie was born and that it might not have been the happy day Bart and Lisa think it is. Homer retells his tale that the day arrived where he finally paid off all of his debt. This allowed him the freedom of quitting his job at the Nuclear Plant, which he hates, and following his dream of working in a bowling alley.
Unfortunately, Marge unexpectedly becomes pregnant meaning that Homer is going to have another mouth to feed and his new bowling alley job isn't going to be able to keep up with the extra costs. This leads to Homer crawling back to Mr. Burns to get his old job back who does take him back but at a cost. Burns puts up a plaque that reads "Don't forget, you're here forever". This puts Homer in a depressed state until he witnesses his newly born daughter and immediately falls in love with her.
When Lisa asks why there are no pictures of Maggie anywhere in the house, Homer says that they are in a place where he needs them the most. I'll just let this picture say it all.
4. Sometimes life rewards people who do not deserve it
We've all met those people. Those people who rarely try to excel but somehow land in a pit of luck. Whether it be there connections, their looks or their plain dumb luck, we all know people who are doing better than us who do not deserve what is given to them. This is taught to us in a very dark and uncomfortable episode called "Homer's Enemy", where a man named Frank Grimes starts working at the Nuclear Power Plant with Homer. Frank Grimes is a man who has worked hard everyday all his life but has gotten nothing but misfortune and misery because of it.
Homer is the complete opposite who works very little at his job to provide for his family and still has a beautiful home, a wife and kids. Frank Grimes begins to despise Homer for his attitude, poor work ethic, and undeserved fortune. The episode keeps on punishing Frank for trying to do the right thing and rewarding Homer who doesn't deserve any of it. The episode then ends with a very shocking and uncomfortable image that you just need to see in order to believe but its that image that lets us know that sometimes life is just unfair.
5. You can try your hardest at something and still fail
This is a lesson that is rarely taught on television shows but is probably one of the most important lessons you can learn in your life. In the first episode of the second season, we learn that all of Bart's procrastinating and goofing off has finally caught up with him and he might have to repeat the fourth grade unless he gets a passing grade on an exam. We then see Bart actually try his best at concentrating at studying even by ways of slapping himself and praying for a miracle.
Unfortunately, all his work is for nothing as he still fails the exam by a single grade point. What follows might be considered one of the saddest moments of Simpsons' history as Bart breaks down into tears stating that this was the best that he could do but he still failed. Now, yes, there is still a happy conclusion because we want to see Bart's hard work pay off. However, there are a lot of students that can identify with this episode who weren't very talented academically and always struggled with their studies. A lot of kid's shows usually tell children that if you try hard enough, you can succeed at anything which is, unfortunately, not always true.
You can put all your time, blood, sweat and tears into something and still sadly fail. Its a very difficult lesson to learn but everyone learns it at some point in their life.