10 Times The Simpsons Blatantly Trolled The Audience

The good, the bad, and the Sadgasm: Ranking the best and worst tricks The Simpsons played on us.


Since its inception, animated American family sitcom The Simpsons has been lauded as one of the greatest achievements in TV history.

Yes, okay, so only the first ten or so seasons of this long-running series constitute its much-contested Golden Age era. But said era gave us TV viewers so many extraordinary instalments from genius writers like Conan O’Brien, Mike Reiss, and the reclusive John Swartzwelder, that even in its thirty-first season the show retains much love from viewers for its transformative contribution to the medium’s landscape.

That said, like any good comedy The Simpsons isn’t above messing with its audience on occasion, with mixed results throughout its long history.

Some of these instances were misleading ad campaigns or promising plots which were ultimately derailed, whilst some were episodes so bizarre that the fans were left wondering what the writer’s room were smoking that week (they were eating rotisserie chicken, for the record).

Here are ten times that television’s first family pulled one over on its sizeable audience—for better or worse.

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