Popular American TV show The Simpsons is once again under fire, as its central character Homer has been described as undermining the hard work of stupid fat men everywhere. As one civil rights expert explained: ‘Nobody is helped by this stereotype. It’s hard enough being Eamonn Holmes as it is’.
‘It’s not like no one ever made fun of me before,’ said Billybob Calhoun, being interviewed in his double-wide trailer somewhere in the deep Midwest. ‘But that show has given them more ammunition, and above all a name they can call me. “It’s Homer Simpson!” the kids all shout, pointing and laughing as I trundle to the store on my mobility scooter. How I long for the days when they just shouted “What a disgusting fat slob!”.’
The show itself has already addressed this controversy in a sequence where Marge reads Lisa a bedtime story in which the word ‘fat’ has been replaced by ‘differently thin’. Finding this unsatisfactory, Lisa turns to the camera and says: ‘Oh who are we kidding, being grossly obese is very bad for you, why are we pretending it’s OK? Maybe if you at least walked to the store to get your daily fix of high fructose corn syrup, that would be a start.’