The Simpsons has supposedly predicted many things, but one piece of cartoon clairvoyance can be crossed off the list: 9/11.
From forecasting that a Trump Presidency would happen to thumbing its nose at the future Disney/Fox merger, the American sitcom has seemingly had a real crystal ball on hand in the writers’ room. However, one prediction that has been attributed to the creative team concerning the September 11 terror attacks in 2001 has been debunked.
Former show-runner and writer Josh Wenstein opened up a Q&A on Twitter this Monday (January 2), sparking a rush of eager fan replies. One user asked if there was any truth to the conspiracy theories regarding the show predicting 9/11. Weinstein said it was an “unfortunate” case of “coincidence”.
Anytime conspiracy theories based on the belief that the show predicted the future pic.twitter.com/7aGINPSN86
— ?Bread Hensil? (@brad_hensil) January 3, 2023
The question highlights a moment from the first episode of 1997’s season 9, The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson. In the episode Bart holds a picture in a magazine aloft which features an image representing 9/11 (see Tweets above or below).
Responding to the question posed, Weinstein wrote: “I can tell you the unfortunate 9/11 one was strictly because 9 dollars seemed like the funniest low bus fare and we wanted the World Trade Center buildings in the ad because that’s where the story took place. Totally, totally a coincidence [sic].”
I can tell you the unfortunate 9/11 one was strictly because 9 dollars seemed like the funniest low bus fare and we wanted the World Trade Center buildings in the ad because that’s where the story took place. Totally, totally a coincidence. The Fox/Disney one seems prescient!
— Josh Weinstein (@Joshstrangehill) January 3, 2023
Elsewhere in the Q&A another fan asked if there had been any mistakes that had turned into Simpsons gold, tweeting: “Is there an example of a real mistake that you guys just went with and it became a permanent fixture?”
Weinstein seemed to remember one in particular and replied with an image of Hans Moleman. “Yes, he’s called Moleman,” he tweeted back alongside the image.
The Q&A came a day after the news that The Simpsons‘ longtime music editor, Chris Ledesma, had passed away at the age of 64.
The cause of death remains unknown at this point. News of Ledesma’s death was made public when The Simpsons paid tribute to him with a card at the end of Sunday’s episode (aired on FOX in the US on January 1).