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Leave It to The Simpsons to Offer Glimpses of 2020

2 minute read

The apparent parallels fans draw from the The Simpsons to actual life are endlessly fascinating, and the current news is no exception.

The long-running animated series has developed a reputation for predicting the future, somehow foretelling events ranging from Greece’s debt default to the rise of smartwatches to Bengt Holmström’s Nobel Prize in Economics to the election of Donald Trump. Now fans are pointing to one episode that predicted both a viral outbreak and killer bees, an eyebrow-raising glimpse of the events of 2020. Now, one of the show’s former writers, Bill Oakley, weighed in on Twitter to offer a tongue-in-cheek admission that maybe the show did seem to predict the events of 2020.

The episode in question,“Marge in Chains”, is from the show’s fourth season and revolves around a fictional flu sweeping through Springfield and a rebellious crowd demanding a cure for the virus. While some fans were already interpreting this episode as a prediction of the coronavirus, it’s mirroring of the events of 2020 doesn’t stop there. In a clip circulating on Twitter, when a group of Springfield residents rally for a cure for the virus, they knock over a box containing “killer bees”, a move that some people are saying also prophesied the arrival of the so-called “murder hornets” that hit the U.S. recently.

The combination of virus and killer bees may have prompted Oakley to address the show’s apparent soothsaying powers. It’s a nod that may be particularly satisfying for fans, because in the past he has brushed off suggestions of the show’s purported prophetic abilities. “It’s mainly just coincidence because the episodes are so old that history repeats itself,” he told The Hollywood Reporter in March. “Most of these episodes are based on things that happened in the Sixties, Seventies or Eighties that we knew about.”

However, Oakley’s interview with The Hollywood Reporter was before murder hornets were in the news. The strange series of events taking place in 2020 may just reached him. Read on for what the experts have to say about these coincidences on The Simpsons.

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