I think I speak for everyone when I say our childhoods would not have been the same without the loveable characters of Springfield. In fact…childhood? About 85% of my Sundays are spent on the sofa watching The Simpsons thinking ‘I haven’t seen this one – why haven’t I seen this one’? The endless pot of goodness is brought to us by Matt Groening – who recently revealed a secret about his inspiration for the setting.
Classed as one of the best-kept secrets in television history, The Simpsons creator Matt Groening has now pointed to Springfield, Oregon, as his inspiration for the animated home town of Homer and the gang. Groening told Smithsonian magazine recently that he was inspired by the television show ‘Father Knows Best’, which took place in a place called Springfield. He worked out that Springfield was one of the most common city names in the US.
“In anticipation of the success of the show, I thought, ‘This will be cool; everyone will think it’s their Springfield’. And they do,” he said.
The show has made a running joke of hiding the true Springfield location. In one episode, Lisa points to Springfield on a map, but the animated “camera view” is blocked by Bart’s head
The city has already incorporated the Simpsons into local lore. The Springfield Museum features a couch similar to the animated one shown in the show’s opening credits, and a plaque marking the movie’s release.
Here are some snaps from the real Springfield, and the Springfield we know and love…
The Springfield we see in The Simpsons is not always a flattering portrait. The school is falling apart, there is a constant fire at the town dump and the mayor is helplessly corrupt. “We kind of got past it,” said a spokesman for Springfield. “We don’t dwell on the bad stuff. Obviously we don’t have a nuclear power plant. We don’t have a lot of stuff in the Simpsons. What we do have are a lot of blue-collar working families that go to church every week and eat dinner together. That is accurate.”
All together now…awwww!