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« Google Earth Reveals Oddities and Secrets | Main | There's Nothing Like a Stiff Drink Right Before Liftoff »


Paul Halpern

Interesting story. Just to let you know that I have a new book out about science on the Simpsons. It's called:

"What's Science Ever Done for Us? What the Simpsons Can Teach Us About Physics, Robots, Life and the Universe."

Best regards,
Paul Halpern


Homer: *Finally*... Science has joined forces with Revenge.


Barrie Tite

Surely the key quote from Buzz Aldrin was "Second comes right after first!"

Barrie Tite

Oh, and more on-topic, Homer said "The internet wasn't created for mockery, it was supposed to help researchers at different universities share data sets. It was!"

Doctor Disgruntled

After the "Bart's Comet" fails to annihilate Springfield and the mob of townspeople cheers in relief, Moe says, "Now let's go burn down the observatory so this can never happen again!"

(Ok, not hard science, but it's about causality).


Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

If you want _real_ science geekery, you have to turn to the best.. _Futurama_...


"In a typical scene, two robots meet and discover what to them is an amazing coincidence: their serial numbers are, respectively, 3370318 and 2716057. As the robots high-five delightedly, they explain to their bewildered human companions that both numbers are expressible as the sum of two cubes.

The exchange is a not-so-veiled reference to a famous mathematical anecdote. When mathematician G.H. Hardy visited mathematical prodigy Srinivasa Ramanujan in a London hospital in 1917, he lamented to Ramanujan that his taxi had a very boring number, 1729. On the contrary, Ramanujan immediately replied, that number is very interesting: It's the smallest number expressible as the sum of two cubes in two different ways. "

And Zapp Brannigan's starship, the _Nimbus_? DP-1729..

Lee Stoller

...and then there's the Halloween episode where Homer tries to fix his toaster, inadvertently invents a time machine, and kills off all the dinosaurs.


I second Futurama as the best comedy based (partly) on science.

My favorite moment occurred when the Professor went to a dog race. The race was so close that the announcer said they would need to use the "quantum microscope" (the Olympics only time to the one hundredth of a second after they realized that timing to the one thousandth measured random things like the effect of a water splash). The professor was irate and shouted, "By measuring the event you have changed the outcome!"

I almost fell of my chair when I heard that. Classic!

Brock Callen

Greg you make such insightful comments in regards to the Simpsons and the prevalence of science in many of their episodes. Do you use consultants in your research?
In addition another great science related episode is "Marge Vs. The Monorail" the cameo by Leonard Neemoy is most enticing for us eggheads.

Mister Snitch!

Ditto re Futurama. Paul Halpern needs to write a follow-up book, and we need more Futurama.

It makes me angry whenever I think that great show was taken off the air. Well, if anyone needs me, I'll be in the Angry Dome.

Mike D

Best Simpon's "science" moments come in the time-travelling toaster episode, as Homer travels back into the age of dinosaurs and early-evolving land creatures, wherein he kills off the dinosaurs with a sneeze and repeatedly disrupts the entire path of human evolution.

at one point, attempting to back away from a dinosaur, Homer steps on and kills the first fish struggling out of the water and onto land. as he realizes his gaffe, Homer says "THAT"s gonna cost me."

in the same episode as Homer finally returns to his family and gives a crie de couer: "What of DONUTS?!?!?!?!?!

informed by Marge that yes, donuts still exist, Homer relaxes and starts eating breakfast, only to witness his family eat hork up their food with giant lizard tongues.

figuring that things could have gone much worse for him, Homer ssay words to the effect of: Eh...i can live with that."


When Bart goes to school with the “gifted” kids, they all get a kick out of the derivative r dr ("hardy har"). Bart doesn't get it and mistrusts his classmates who do.


One Springfield resident who thinks big when it comes to applied science is the benevolent owner of the nuclear power plant Mr. Burns, who tells Smithers:

"Mankind has always dreamed of destroying the sun".

Gary5000's Agent

Kudos to Brock on his Season 4 reference. In fact S4 has many great moments for us egghead Simpson fan-diddly-reno's.
For those interested take a look at the "Duffless" episode when Bart ruins Lisa's science project she vows revenge and tests his mental aptitude against that of a hamster.
Big thanks to GMone for spinning this thread.


During an episode when the Springfieldians riot against science:
1. The mob destroys a Christian Science reading room.
2. A robot engulfed in flames erupts from a burning lab and cries (in monotone), "Why, oh why was I ever programmed to feel pain?"

My favorite was during the five second recap of The Nutty Professor (the first one):
As Frinky feels the effect of his elixir wearing off, he cries, "I'm re-dorkulating hgggnnnn!"


On a visit to a private school Open House, Principal Skinner spies the Periodic Table of Elements hanging on the wall in the state-of-the-art Chemistry Lab and laments:

"Hmmpf! Due to School Board cutbacks OUR Periodic Chart only has 15 elements....and they're all Lanthanides!"

Now that's humor....

Robert Munoz

The professor was irate and shouted, "By measuring the event you have changed the outcome!"

Actually he says, "You changed the result by measuring it!"

And anything on Futurama with the Harlem Globetrotters was f'in gold.


I forget the exact episode, but my favorite Simpson's science quote occurs when one of the characters travels to the future where Marge remarks, "We can do anything now that science has invented magic."


Flanders: We want you to teach alternative theories to Darwinian Evolution.

Skinner: You mean Lamarckian Evolution?


how can one little insulated cable bring so much happiness?! homer j refering to the science of television


My favorite is when the Professor shouts "Pi is exactly 3!" to get scientists' attention at a convention:



Homer: It's pronounced Nukyalure... Nooook-ya-lure.


During the season nine episode "Lisa the Skeptic", the Judge declares "I'm issuing a restraining order. Religion must stay 500 yards from Science at all times."


remember the episode where all the kids are trapped in school by the snow? martin uses salt to melt it all and then proudly announces to the assembled throng 'all done by the magic of sodium chloride!" before being beaten up by nelson. hilarious.

Paul Halpern

Hi Greg, and (to quote Dr. Nick) "Hi Everybody!"

I was interviewed last week on CN 8 TV about The Simpsons and Science. In case you are interested, here's the URL:


Best regards,

Paul Halpern
Author, "What's Science Ever Done for Us? What The Simpsons Can Teach Us About Physics, Robots, Life and the Universe."

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