It is and isn't hard to believe the first episode of The Simpsons aired on December 17, 1989. While it's flabbergasting to think the show has been on the air for more than a quarter of a century, The Simpsons is such an American institution it feels timeless. In returning to old episodes, you might find some jokes that make you grimace - there are plenty of offensive jokes on the Simpsons the show couldn't get away with in 2016.
So what's this all about? Are there racist jokes on The Simpsons? That's probably in the eye of the beholder - where do you draw the line between racist jokes and jokes about race? There are certainly jokes you couldn't get away with today, and what many would consider outdated Simpsons jokes. There are also blatant sexual references, political jabs, and a blurring of the lines between adult and children's content that wouldn't fly in an increasingly divided programming system. Read on to see the Simpsons jokes that wouldn't work today.
Homer Gets Raped By a Panda
Episode:"Homer vs Dignity" (Season 12, Episode 5. November 26, 2000)
The Joke: Homer dresses up as a panda at the Springfield Zoo and a real panda rapes him.
Why It Wouldn't Fly: Um...rape. And bestiality.
The Show Takes a Dump on Brazil
Episode: "Blame It on Lisa" (Season 13, Episode 5. March 31, 2002)
The Joke: The Simpson family goes to Brazil to search for soccer legend Ronaldo. The show portrays Brazil as a crime-ridden hell hole, rife with kidnappings, mugging, fiendish bisexual predators, rampaging monkeys, rat infestations, and grotesque slums.
In response the the episode, the Rio de Janeiro tourism board nearly sued Fox for damaging the city's image.
Why It Wouldn't Fly: First off, the bisexual stuff is kinda...not PC. It's also hard to get away with taking a giant dump on another country in 2016. Yet, at the same time, thanks to the Olympics, we know that a lot of what goes on the episode isn't far from the truth.
Rabbits Fake Orgasms Too, Kids
Episode: "Bart's Friend Falls in Love" (Season 3, Episode 23. May 7, 1992)
The Joke: Ms. Krabappel shows Bart's class a sex education video entitled Fuzzy Bunny's Guide to You Know What, which tells the story of a pair of rabbits who comes of age, fall in love, get married, have sex, and pump out of ton of kids. During the video's sex scene, Ms. Krabappel, completely blasé and smoking a cigarette, intones, "She's faking it."
Hoover Has Serious Suction Power
Episode: "Days of Future Future" (Season 25, Episode 18. April 13, 2014)
The Joke: An adult Bart nails one of Lisa's former teachers, Ms. Hoover. As they're lying in bed after, he says "Now I see why they call you Ms Hoover." She's got maximum suck action.
Why It Wouldn't Fly: Actually, it probably would, since this episode aired in 2014, so file this under "can't believe they got away with it."