This week, we learned accomplished voice actor Harry Shearer is planning to leave his post at The Simpsons. Shearer has been on board with The Simpsons since the beginning and takes with him the voices of Simpsons staples Ned Flanders, Mr. Burns, and many more.
The Simpsons may be continuing its slow demise, but we wanted to enjoy the best of times regarding the longest running animated series in television history. The possibilities might be endless, but we thought we'd try our hand and pairing up BYU athletics personalities with their natural Simpsons counterparts. That isn't to say every comparison is perfect in every possible personality trait, just that the similarities are there. So don't get too twisted over it.
Ned Flanders : Bronco Mendenhall
The first, most obvious choice is Ned Flanders/Bronco Mendenhall. The likeable-but-also-sometimes-off-putting unique quirkiness, religiosity, mannerisms, assumed mild-manneredness, and the catch-phrases/buzz words. It's all there.
Bart Simpson : Jim McMahon
Though I suppose Bart never achieved the pinnacle of competition quite like McMahon (possibly only because Homer stopped Bart from jumping Springfield Gorge on his skateboard), the two share a certain likability and a disregard for authority and expected behavior. Nothing says "eat my shorts" more than being the Packers' backup QB and wearing your Chicago Bears uniform to the White House to meet the president -- to say nothing of his time at BYU.
Nelson Muntz : Tejan Koroma
Nelson is Springfield Elementary's resident bully, just like Koroma bullies defensive linemen with his insanely-huge arms until they want to fight him.
He's not all a rough guy though, as he was captured just a day after the brawl in Miami Beach -- just like Nelson when he dates Lisa.
Rainier Wolfcastle : Jordan Pendleton
Rod & Todd Flanders : Garrett & Mitchell Juergens
Brothers and two upstanding gents who we'd be very surprised to see break the honor code.
Hank Scorpio : Tom Holmoe
Think of the coolest boss ever, and that's Hank Scorpio/Tom Holmoe. And like Scorpio's evil intentions, Holmoe works hard every day to disrupt the power structure of college football with awesome football scheduling.
Disco Stu : Jamaal Williams
Homer : Roger French
Fatherly, prone to emotional outbursts, but totally loveable.
Jebediah Springfield : LaVell Edwards
The namesake and founder of the Simpsons' hometown is shrouded in legend, which legend casts a large shadow. Though Lisa learns and almost exposes Jebediah's exploits -- like the legend of taming the untameable buffalo when really it was already tame and he just shot it -- we often overlook the moribund years of LaVell's tenure and remember only the grand times. Just like Lisa, who thankfully kept all her discoveries about Jebediah to herself.
(An example of the "not all traits translate" caveat: I don't think LaVell can compare to being a vicious pirate who tried to kill George Washington.)
Comic Book Guy : CougarBoard
"Worst. Player. Ever." Fair or not, CougarBoard is often viewed as the home for BYU's most pessimistic, critical fans.
Some Comic Book Guy quotes:
"If my knowledge of sci-fi movies is correct, which it is, the black car is an advanced probe for the mothership. Now, if you're through, I'm going to spend my last hours on Earth complaining about movies on the internet."
"I have no time to converse with you, I must be first to register my disgust on the internet regarding the new McBain film. The action was dismal and the nudity was frustratingly fleeting. I barely got going."
And in a Simpsons Comic Book story, CBG has this conversation with "Graphic Novel Kid," who is rivaling CBG for a newly-opened spokesmodel position for Lard Lad:
Comic Book Guy: So, we finally cross paths!
Graphic Novel Kid: Indeed! This is like meeting my Bizzaro clone! A sad copy!
Comic Book Guy: You're the copy!
Graphic Novel Kid: Perhaps we should settle this like men!
Comic Book Guy: A message board flame war?
Graphic Novel Kid: Unless you haven't got the emoticons!
Lionel Hutz : BYU's "piece of work" attorneys
"Their general counsel (lawyers) is a piece of work" -- this phrase about BYU infamously came from one of Brett McMurphy's sources during college football's realignmentexspansionpalooza of 2011. Although Chuck Neinas recently dismantled that and many other often-held sentiments surrounding BYU's efforts to get into the Big 12, the phrase will probably persist forever.
There is no bigger piece-of-work lawyer in Springfield than Lionel Hutz, who once found a way to claim $99,500 of Bart's $100,000 reward in his case against Krusty the Clown after Bart ingested the jagged "prize" piece found in Krusty's line of cereal.
Chief Wiggum : Honor Code Office
Just because I want to be upset about the portions of the honor code that go above and beyond LDS standards.
Krusty the Clown : Eric Mika
Mika is a legitimately funny dude.
Fat Tony : Robert Anae
Robert Anae can very much be a scary person, just like Springfield's mob boss. And don't tell me "What is the purpose of your question" isn't straight from Fat Tony's mouth.
Dr. Nick Riviera : Gary Crowton
Likeable, funny, but not quite as competent as you wanted.
Hans Moleman : Paul Walkenhorst
Hans, the 70+ year old who claims he is 31, is an unlucky old fellow to whom accidents often befall. Walkenhorst battled through numerous injuries (to his credit) and had to have been the oldest, longest-rostered BYU football player of all-time.
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon : Utah
BYU keeps scheduling Utah, the Utes keep winning. "Thank you, come again."
Nahasapeemapetilon octuplets : Kaufusis
Even Bronco joked on signing day, upon the signing of yet another Kaufusi, that defensive line coach Steve Kaufusi's job security is connected to his progeny.
Ralph Wiggum : Utah State
"Me fail football? That's unpossible!"
Troy McClure : Spencer Linton
Well, not until the BYU SportsNation host lands his first movie role.
Gil Gunderson : Nick Howell
Coach Howell just can't catch a break with some of you fans.
Monkey's Paw : #FireBronco
Chase: "It grants your wish, but brings grave misfortune with it."