Analysis Of Religion In The Simpsons

1589 words - 7 pages

To begin, the first example of religion in this episode begins about seven minutes into episode twenty-six, “Homer vs. Lisa and the 8th Commandment”. Lisa is sitting in Sunday school and learns of the Ten Commandments and focuses on the eighth commandment, “Thou shalt not steal”, realising her family is breaking this commandment by stealing cable. When the family gets home from church, Homer turns on the TV and Lisa confronts him asking, “Dad, are you sure this isn’t stealing?” when suddenly, Lisa envisions the devil entering her home and setting the place on fire. As he sits down he encourages Lisa, “C’mon Lisa, watch a little cable with us! It won’t cost you a thing, hahaha!” This run-in ...view middle of the document...

When they are at the checkout counter, Marge tells the clerk, “I ate two grapes. Please charge me for them” and the clerk sarcastically yells, “I need a price check on two grapes… two measly stinkin’ grapes.” Therefore, these examples are demonstrative of Lisa’s commitment to her morals and religion; although surrounded by a cesspool of corruption, she faces and rejects temptation, even from her own family, and does what she knows is right, all while struggling with honouring the fifth commandment, “Honour thy father and thy mother”, representative of her internal moral and religious conflict.
The second example of religion that will be discussed is found in the two hundred seventy fifth episode entitled, “She of Little Faith”. In this episode, it explores Lisa’s conversion from the fictional faith her family follows, known as “Presbylutheranism”. At the beginning of the episode, Homer and Bart are seen building a model rocket that they have attempted to fly several times without success. On their final try, they successfully launch the rocket however, it flies into their home church, explodes, and sets the church on fire. After a meeting with Rev. Lovejoy, the minister of the church, he concludes that the funds aren’t available to rebuild it. Conversely, Mr. Burns, with a devil shaped shadow, approaches the Reverend suggesting that he could fund the repairs by, “[running] this church like a business” and reluctantly, Rev. Lovejoy agrees. When the Simpsons arrive at church, they realise they are surrounded by, “A faith based emporium teaming with impulse buy items”. When they are in the church, Lisa decides enough is enough, but Homer tries to keep her quiet, “Quiet Lisa, everyone in the store is looking at you”. Lisa indifferently yells, “Everyone should take a good look at themselves and what this church has become!”. Naïvely, the Reverend claims that, “it’s still the same message. We’ve just dressed it up a bit” and Lisa vulgarly interjects, “What? Like the whore of Babylon?”. When Lisa states this, her analogy accurately signifies the churches corruption by materialism. This situation is analogous of the book of Revelations in the bible, specifically “Babylon the Great” as seen in chapter seventeen. The “Whore of Babylon” or “Babylon the Great” is a figure associated with the Antichrist, with many forms of symbolic interpretation. In this instance, the Whore of Babylon is emblematic of lust and materialism, evident when she is described as a, “woman … arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication” (Revelations 17:4). Being the only one to see through the corruption in the church, Lisa, resolutely, declares that she is leaving the church forever. Thus, the Whore of Babylon is, figuratively, embellished to obscure her true “identity”; made to look better than she truly is when in contrast, she is the polar...

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