When The Simpsons first premiered as a series of shorts on The Tracey Ullman Show in 1987, Ronald Reagan was president, the Internet had not been born, iPhones did not exist, and the Gulf War had not yet started. My book The World According to The Simpsons examines the myriad of ways that The Simpsons influences our society, and serves as a springboard from which to learn more about the world. I decided to write this book because the show has so much depth, and is a very important part of my generation’s popular culture. Millions of people across the globe have been inspired by the show, and it has produced a great deal of laughter and happiness. The Simpsons has also had a major impact on my own life.
Personally, The Simpsons served as an inspiration for the high school club that my friends and I created (Backrow, Inc.). It has provided for endless hours of laughter and thought-provoking analysis. In fact, the manner in which issues are presented on the show — almost always in an evenhanded manner that leaves copious room for debate — influenced my decision to become a lawyer. Writing about The Simpsons also spawned my future writings on a wide variety of topics relating to popular culture, law, and history.
And I have been fortunate to have had some very positive experiences that are directly attributed to The Simpsons. I had the opportunity to meet with creator Matt Groening three times. Mr. Groening told me that he had read my book and thought that it was “great”. I visited The Simpsons writers’ room at FOX studios three times and toured the animation studio twice. It was an honor to see a copy of my book on the writers’ room at table when I visited (and for the writers to inform me that the team passes my book around the table as they write the show)! It has been an honor to write about the show that we all love so much, and to become friends with many of the people who write, animate, and do voice-over acting for the series.