The Simpsons has been on the air for over three decades now. Throughout all those years, it has brought countless smiles and laughs to viewers around the world, and has even influenced culture.
So much has happened in the Simpsons universe that overanalyzing fans have come up with all kinds of complex, unusual, and oftentimes ridiculous theories about various aspects of the show.
Here are some of the more interesting Simpsons fan theories to have surfaced, and what they mean for the series.
1. Homer Is Stuck in a Coma
In season 4, Bart decided to get even with Homer on April Fools’ Day by violently shaking a can of Duff using an industrial paint shaker, then turning up the temperature so that Homer was tempted to drink it.
The resulting explosion blew the roof off of the Simpsons’ house and caused Homer to fall into a coma. According to one fan theory, Homer has remained in that coma ever since; the rest of the show is actually Homer dreaming while comatose.
This fan theory was eventually debunked by showrunner Al Jean, but he did say it was intriguing. Yet while it might not have weight with the people behind the series, it’s still a thought-provoking prospect.
2. Everything After The Island…
In season 12, when Homer ends up on a mysterious island and continuously gassed by an unknown figure, he attempts to escape. Homer does manage to find his way home—but as soon as he does, he and the family are gassed again and taken back.
This fan theory says that the Simpsons family has never made it back off the island after that, and now the remaining episodes are a collective halluciation shared by the family.
Although it’s similar to the “Homer Is Stuck in a Coma” fan theory, this one suggests that the entire family has been imprisoned. Everything that has happened to them since is nothing more than a dream.
3. Barney Is Nelson’s Dad
One fan theory that’s been around for a long time now claims that Barney Gumble is Nelson’s biological dad.
Nelson often tells the tale of how his father went out for a pack of cigarettes and never came back. Plus, whenever you see both Barney and Nelson together in a scene (which admittedly hasn’t happened often), you can’t help but notice a strong resemblance.
It’s not hard to see how Barney might’ve walked out on his child and headed over to Moe’s one day, only never to head back. That makes Barney much worse as a character, but it’s plausible.
Yes, we’re aware that there have been episodes that show Nelson’s actual father. But isn’t it possible that Nelson isn’t really his son? Given the other details, we want to believe!
4. Homer Still Owns the Denver Broncos
In season 8, Homer goes to work for Hank Scorpio but has no idea that Scorpio is a supervillain who wants to take over the East Coast—which he does end up doing successfully. As a reward for Homer’s work, Scorpio buys him ownership of the Denver Broncos.
Throughout the rest of the show, this fan theory states that Homer still owns the Denver Broncos—but because he hates them, he has never kept track of their worth. In other words, Homer Simpson is really a billionaire but he’s forgotten all about it.
As the Denver Broncos storyline was never resolved, and it was to Homer’s chagrin that he was gifted the Broncos (when Homer wanted to own the Dallas Cowboys instead), it’s indeed possible that he forgot that he owned the team, and it makes for a fun theory.
5. Bart Is Actually a Stonecutter
In season 6, strange things start happening around Lenny and Carl, so Homer decides to follow them to figure out what’s going on. He discovers that they’re members of a secret society called the Stonecutters and promptly becomes eager to join.
When Homer tells his family about it, Bart doesn’t seem all that surprised—and he even drags Lisa away at Homer’s request when he becomes the chosen one.
This fan theory says that Bart was actually a member of the Stonecutters before Homer was. His eligibility comes from the time he donated his blood to save Mr Burns’ life, thus saving the life of a Stonecutter—one of the required ways of joining.
6. Homer’s B-Sharps Royalty Cheques
Over the years, the Simpsons family has gotten themselves into more and more wacky situations. One question that’s always raised is: where does the family get all of their money?
According to one fan theory, the money allegedly comes from Homer’s time as the singer-songwriter for the B-Sharps. He’s still collecting royalty cheques to this day, and that money is used to fund the family’s adventures (and misadventures).
As fan theories go, it’s one of the best ones because it requires no evidence from other episodes to prove its veracity. The cheque sizes would ebb and flow with album sales, leading to ups and downs in Homer’s financial state (which has come up from time to time).