20 Years With The Simpsons

Matt Groening, created the animated sitcom, �The Simpsons� for Fox Broadcasting Company. The idea came from the lobby of James L. Brooks’s office and that’s how this popular adaptation of a dysfunctional family came about. Even the characters were named after his own family members, with the exception of lead character Bart.

On April 19, 1987, �The Simpsons� made their first appearance as shorts in The Tracey Ullman Show. When the initial submission was made, only basic sketches were handed in expecting they would be refined in production stages but they were left as is and that’s the reason why despite modification over the years the Simpsons still have a very rudimentary faade. On December 17, 1989, “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire� was the half-hour premiere show.

The Simpsons has been debated since the start with lead character Bart often going scot-free despite wrong doings and this portrayed him as a poor role model for youngsters. It’s portrayal of the middle class American lifestyle symbolized by family members Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie Simpson. The backdrop of the show is the fictional town of Springfield, which is filled with characters, and events that are an animated and inspired from American society. Homer Simpson the father is employed as a safety inspector at Springfield Nuclear Power Plant. Often his job is at risk as a result of his casual and comic nature. His wife, Marge is a conventional American housewife and mother. Their 3 children are Bart, a ten-year-old menace, Lisa, an aware 8 year old activist and the baby Maggie, who hardly speaks but does communicate by sucking on a pacifier. They have a dog called Santa’s Little Helper, and a cat, called Snowball II. Over the years, the show has celebrated even ts but the characters have not aged since the start of the show.

The Simpsons have influenced mainstream society in more ways than one. Language and terms used in this animated sitcom has made its transition into popular everyday vernacular. To the extent that Homer Simpsons popular use of the expression �D’oh!’ is listed in the Oxford English Dictionary without its apostrophe. Even the use of the term �excellent’ pronounced as �eexcelllent’ in the show is used by people around us. The term �cheese-eating surrender monkeys”’ referring to the French has been used by popularly by conservative National Review columnist Jonah Goldberg in 2003, when the French opposed the invasion of Iraq proposal. And soon it was popular lingo amongst journalists.

The Simpsons is a legendary show in respect to prime time television programs. This is because initially animated shows were thought to be for kids and airing a complete animated program on prime time for universal viewing was a bold step. Though thought to be an expensive idea, The Simpsons were aired successfully because they cut down on expenses by using Korean animation studios for in-betweening, coloring, and filming. The success of The Simpsons show prompted many others to start animated shows of this nature and for prime time viewing. In its time it has certainly been a pioneering show if its type and still stands tall. In fact the Simpsons are so respected that when South Park achieved success on television they aired an episode �Simpsons Already Did It” as homage to its predecessor.

The Simpsons have been awarded at many occasions. Their booty consists of 23 Emmy Awards, 24 Annie Awards and a Peabody Award. The TIME magazines 1998 publication commemorating the 20th Century’s greatest achievements in arts and entertainment, named The Simpsons as the last century’s best television series, along with naming Bart Simpson in the list of the century’s 100 most influential people. Incidentally Bart was the only imaginary character on the list. At the turn of this century the Simpsons won a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. They have also been acclaimed as the greatest television show of the 1990s, 2001′s 100 Greatest Kids’ TV shows, and 2005′s 100 Greatest Cartoons. Homer Simpson has been recognized as the forerunner in 2001′s 100 Greatest TV Characters. Other awards include the TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time, and a mention in the TIME’s list of 100 Best TV Shows of All Time.

In 2004, they became the longest-running American animated sitcom in the United States. Regardless of criticism over the years, The Simpsons maintains a huge viewer base. The shows first season enjoyed an average of 13.4 million viewers, and the 17th season had an average of 9.2 million viewers per episode, respectively. The Simpsons Movie made $74 million in its opening weekend in the US.

In the end of the last century a number of US public schools banned �The Simpsons’ merchandise and t-shirts. In spite of the ban, their merchandise still continued to be popular and generated US$2 billion in revenue in its first 14 months of sales. Their popularity paved the way for them in turning into a billion-dollar merchandizing industry.

Merchandise includes everything you can imagine, from t-shirts to posters. The iconic characters have inspired unique editions of board games, including Clue, Scrabble, Monopoly, Operation, and The Game of Life. Trivia and card games have also been introduced. There are Simpsons comic books and related publications, including 9 comic book series from Bongo Comics publication. The comics have also been made available in book form and there’s episode guides too. There’s numerous soundtrack and other musical releases including music that’s’ not been aired on the show. You can purchase The Simpsons Movie DVDs and DVD boxsets. You can buy video of episodes that have been aired. Seasons one to ten have been released on DVD in many continents. You can even buy The Simpsons video games. This includes The Simpsons, The Simpsons: Bart vs. the Space Mutants, The Simpsons Road Rage, The Simpsons Hit & Run and The Simpsons Game (2007).

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Good Old American Football With New England Patriots Tickets

New England Patriots tickets are not just tickets to see some great live football action; they are also tickets to see a team that has often been dubbed as part of the modern NFL dynasty. The new millennium has certainly been taken by storm by the Patriots and they show absolutely no signs of slowing down. This is remarkable, considering that the Patriots had a less than desirable record in the beginning.

The New England Patriots are part of the National Football League and are also a part of the American Football Conference and the AFC East. The Patriots have ten Division championships to their name as well as five Conference wins and three Super Bowl titles. The Patriots play their home games at the Gillette Stadium.

Slumps and Scandals

The Patriots began as one of the founding members of the AFL and joined the NFL in 1970. The team did not make a good initial impression, producing the fledgling NFL’s worst season with just 2 wins and 12 losses. This was blamed on a number of factors, ranging from lack of team stability to the fact that they needed to practice in 4 different places.

While New England Patriots tickets remained a steady favorite, the Patriots themselves were unable to do anything extraordinary on the field, barring the fact that they won three playoff games on the road. By the late eighties and early nineties, the Patriots became bogged down with a number of scandals. The worst came in 1990, the same year that the Patriots had an embarrassing season record of 1-15. That same year, a female reporter from the Boston Herald was sexually and verbally assaulted by members of the team. The offending members were fined and the coach was sacked. On another level, the scandal opened up serious questions about female reporters and journalists in male-dominated sports like football.

From Zero To Hero

Even though New England Patriots tickets were still selling well, things couldn’t get much worse for the Patriots. In 1992, rumors began to surface that the team was going to be relocated and this could well have signaled a wake-up call to the team. Despite rumblings and quarrels within the management, the Patriots began to improve in their performance so that by the new millennium, they seemed like another team.

Now it wasn’t just the fans, football lovers everywhere began lining up for New England Patriots tickets after the team managed to win the Super Bowl three times, once in 2001 and back to back in 2003 and 2004. This improvement has reflected in sales of New England Patriots tickets, especially on their home turf. Sales records have shown that since 1996, every single Patriots home game has been sold out.

Today the Patriots are right at the helm of what many are calling the new NFL dynasty. The new millennium has seen some extremely strong performances from the team and the fans hope to get to see more great football action from them in the future. If the Patriots are playing at a city near you, get yourself some New England Patriots tickets and treat yourself to some real championship football. You can also go online and buy your tickets from an authorized ticket vendor.

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Sports And Sports Betting: The Quotes And The Quotable

From an NFL player alleged to be so cruel to dogs it should make you cringe, to an NBA referee who went on a sports betting binge, to a Tour de France rider with a syringe, it’s been an interesting few months in the world of sports and sports betting.

To be sure, this stuff matters to both sports bettors and online sportsbooks. Gamblers who bet on the Falcons in a myriad of different future books with their sportsbooks face the realization that their team probably will have to win without quarterback, Michael Vick, who was charged with a federal indictment on dog fighting and dog gambling.

Just how many NBA games were tainted due to the actions of referee Tim Donaghy remains unclear to all those except Tony Soprano.

And if you wagered with your favorite sportsbook on which rider would win the Tour de France, you can rip up your tickets on 5/2 favorite Alexandre Vinokourov and overall leader Michael Rasmussen, 60/1, each of whom was bounced from the event for substance abuse violations.

If there is a silver lining to these abuses it is that these sordid revelations have inspired journalists, athletes, administrators and just plain ordinary folks to be witty, innovative, humorous and, in some cases, just plain silly.

See for yourself.

“Now, granted he (Michael Vick) might have been to a dogfight a time or two, maybe five times, maybe 20 times, may have bet some money, but he’s not the one you’re after. He’s just the one who’s going to take the fall.”

–Former Cowboys great Emmitt Smith, offering his view on the Vick allegations

“If O.J. (Simpson) get can get away with murder, Michael Vick can get away with a few hurt dogs.”

–Maal Clayton, who identified himself as a graduate of the same high school as Vick

“Had the weirdest dream last night. Dreamt that Pacman Jones was bitten by Michael Vick’s dog while trying to steal Tank Johnson’s gun.”

–Greg Cote, the Miami Herald

“Greed is still central to the human condition and legalized gambling now is as close as the corner store or the nearest computer. Our growing cultural tolerance for games of chance has effectively blurred the boundaries separating entertainment from vice and avocation from addiction. In an age when professional sports franchises freely forge sponsorship deals with casinos, and team logos appear on state lottery tickets, it does not require much of a logical leap to wonder whether the games those teams play are completely above board.

“To describe Tim Donaghy as an isolated case, then, is optimism bordering on naivete.”

–Tim Sullivan, The San Diego Union-Tribune

“By trying to sneak doping practices past cycling officials, the riders are playing Russian roulette.”

–Christian Prudhomme, director of the Tour de France after Vinokorouv and Rasmussen were eliminated from the race. For the record, neither Vinokorouv (Kazakhstan) nor Rasmussen (Denmark), are from Russia.

Speaking of syringes:

“He’s a little midget man who absolutely knows jack shit about baseball, who never played the game before.”

–SF slugger Barry Bonds, after broadcaster Bob Costas raised suspicions that Bonds had used steroids

“As anyone can plainly see, I’m 5-6 1/2 and a strapping 150, and unlike some people, I came by all of it naturally. I regard Barry as one of the greatest players of all time who got an inauthentic boost and then became a superhuman player.”

–Costas, answering Bonds

“How do you know?”

Bonds, demonstrating why you should never argue with people who buy ink by the barrel, responding to Costas saying that he came by his physique naturally.

“On at least three occasions (in strip clubs), fights have broken out with other patrons and employees, and on two of those occasions the end result has been gunfire. All I know is what happens in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas, sometimes for several years in a prison cell.”

–Scott Ostler, the San Francisco Chronicle, on the possible fate of Titans cornerback Pacman Jones

“The weirdest part is probably that they were back-to-back-to back. I mean, there was a distinct time between all of them but there wasn’t a musician thrown in there.”

–Actress Alyssa Milano, telling SI.com about her one-time dating rotation of pitchers Carl Pavano, Barry Zito and Brad Penny

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Finding the Most Diverse Sports Store

Odds are, if you enjoy one athletic activity, you probably enjoy a few others as well. Finding people to keep up with your active lifestyle can sometimes be challenging, but finding gear doesn’t have to be. If you are determined to buy all of your sporting goods in one place, you will find that there’s a sports store for you.

Health and fitness are becoming a much more regular part of the society today, and with this increased interest in physical fitness, there are more stores selling the right equipment. Many chains are popping up around the country that offer all of the usual gear: running shoes, compression shorts, jump ropes, and all other varieties of equipment. Despite this, not every sports store carries everything that you need, especially if you are interested in more extreme outdoor activities.

When you have a real drive for that active lifestyle, you know that there is simply no good time to have down time. You have an activity for every season and for every occasion, always working to keep your heart pumping. During the summer, you might be caught playing some disc golf and during the winter your friends will find you skiing on the slopes. If this describes you, then you need more than the run of the mill sporting goods retailer.

Fortunately, finding a sports store that can keep up with your lifestyle is not a fantasy. In fact, many cities around the country have one or more all-purpose stores that offer this type of equipment. Rather than having to go from shop to shop hoping you find what you need, this helps eliminate your trips and allows you to get everything in one place.

Of course, the last thing you want to do is trade convenience for quality or price. In other words, you need to be careful when you find an all-purpose sports store to ensure that you are not purchasing inferior quality goods. Fitness and activity may be important, but inferior products could lead to injury, which is something you never want to endure. Similarly, buying your products in one place should help lower your overall cost, so don’t waste time shopping at a place that will inflate prices just because of the convenience factor.

Ultimately, a good sports store will offer equipment and apparel for a variety of different activities. Whether you are looking to get gear for your competitive sporting event or simply looking to prepare for another outdoors adventure, having the right store in mind can make your supply run that much easier. This will help ensure you always have the right equipment when you need it, and that you will never have a dull moment.

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