Did ‘The Simpsons’ Predict the Coronavirus? Not Really.

Posted 2020/02/02 3 0

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For the last several days, a variety of screengrabs have been shared widely on social media, depicting a variety of predictions The Simpsons supposedly made decades ago that have all recently come true. The main one is about the coronavirus outbreak that originated late last year in Wuhan, China and continues to affect thousands of people around the world. Most of the images appear to be screengrabs from an episode with newsman Kent Brockman warning people about the “Corona Virus” followed by images of sneezing Asian characters and then sickened members of Springfield. Here is a typical example:

In fact, The Simpsons did not make an episode years ago about coronavirus. (The space in “Corona Virus” in the image should have been one clue it wasn’t real.) Most of the images come from the Season 4 Simpsons episode “Marge in Chains,” where an “Osaka Flu” winds up in Springfield after germs travel to America inside the boxes of products manufactured in Japan.

Here’s the scene in question:

Beyond the vaguest of similarities, they’re totally different scenarios. (Nobody’s getting sick because of packages they’ve bought from overseas. Obviously.)

There are also images being shared claiming The Simpsons also predicted the death of Kobe Bryant — these are hoaxes too. However, an animated series on Comedy Central, Legends of Chamberlain Heights, did actually feature an episode where Bryant was involved in a helicopter crash. That clip is authentic, and while it has been removed from Comedy Central’s website, you may see that on social media as well.

But, again, that is not The Simpsons, which also did not predict a coronavirus sickening Springfield. (They have predicted some things correctly, but any show that’s been on for 30 years will eventually do that.) Always look very carefully at what’s being shared on social media and don’t just assume it’s real. In many cases, it is not.

Gallery — The Best Animated Shorts to Watch on Disney+:





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