The Simpsons Follow the Conventions of a Typical Sitcom Essay Sample
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The Simpsons Follow the Conventions of a Typical Sitcom Essay Sample
As T.V was getting more and more popular some shows had started, which fitted into a category of “Sitcoms”. These types of shows were both humorous and situational. The type of comedy which was comic devices like violence which is funny in cartoons or in real life the way the people fight and when some one gets hurt it brings a sense of comedy. There were a variety of different devices used examples include:
Satire- this was a way of making jokes of stereotypes most people in America are stereotypes.
Gags- In the sitcom it shows there were a lot of gags (jokes) used to make the show funny and more interesting.
Slapstick- this was used a lot not only in cartoons but also in real life you would see idiotic people running into walls or slipping over banana peals.
These sitcom shows were short. Normally what would happen is that there would be a situation but at the end everything will turn out to be OK and the situation would be dealt with. In most sitcoms when something funny would happen you would hear canned laughter it is an audience laugh recorded. Sitcoms were based on middle class homes/workers and about normal American/British families. The episodes weren’t in any sort of order any episode would come on. You would have main characters like the family and then the other characters friends, neighbours and other family/relatives etc. The narrative structure becomes a problem and it needs to be sorted out, at the end everything is back to normal, it is a simple plot.
In the opening sequence of a sitcom called “The Simpsons” they show different stereotypes. The show is about a normal American middle class family. The father in this family is “Homer Simpson” who is a fat lazy slob he is definitely a stereotype because a lot of people are like him. In the opening sequence he is introduced when we go into the power plant he is doing dangerous work with a radioactive rod, which is glowing, there is a caution sign behind him, when the whistle blows to go home he drops everything takes his gas mask of. The radioactive rod bounces and falls into the back of his collar this shows how careless he is and it shows his stupidity. This is because he didn’t care where the rod fell or even realized it fell he just wants to get home.
In every Family you have a little devil that in the Simpsons appears to be “Bart Simpson” we see him at school writing lines on the board (he is in detention). Each episode he is writing something different and they are humorous for example “I will not encourage others to fly” the bell rings and he runs out of school, gets onto his skate board and goes home as he goes past chief Wiggum who is a police officer who waves his stick at him when Bart goes past him to slow down or to stop but Bart goes off. Also in every family you have an angel and in the Simpsons it is little “Lisa Simpson” she is intelligent and bright. In the opening sequence she is shown to be talented we see her in a music class she is playing a saxophone and she is very good at it. Marge is a stereotype as she stays at home and nurturing the children she doesn’t go out as she is stuck with the household domestics e.g. cooking, shopping, cleaning etc. In the opening sequence she is shopping and she is not paying attention to Maggie who is on the till and she gets scanned at is put into the shopping bag Marge realises that Maggie is missing and she gets worried but Maggie pops her head out of the shopping bag and then they go home. The family get home at the same time.
The episode that I had watched was “Simpsons roasting on an open fire”. A simple plot of this episode is that the family go out to do the Christmas shopping and Bart goes of and gets a tattoo Marge sees him and immediately takes him to get it removed unfortunately she spends all the Christmas money to get it removed she thinks she can use Homers Christmas bonus to use on Christmas. Meanwhile homer is at work and he finds out that he isn’t getting a Christmas bonus so he thinks the family can use the money they saved not knowing Marge has spent it. When the family get home Homer finds out that the money they saved up has been spent to get Bart’s tattoo being removed Homer doesn’t tell the family that his Christmas bonus is cancelled so he works in a superstore as Santa Clause. Bart finds out about this and at the end of Homer’s job he only gets $13.00 so him and Bart go to the derby they lose but they bring the dog that they chose home because he was kicked out the derby so at the end every one is happy.
In the Simpsons “Homer” is shown to be stereotyped because in America you would find a lot of people like him, he is not well educated, he’s lazy, and he eats and drinks a lot, there are a lot of people in America like him but still though these people are stereotyped at the end they are all kind and loving towards there families. Homer would usually come home from work eat dinner with his family then he would either sit and watch telly or go out to Mo’s and have a drink with his friend.
Another familiar character is “Bart” he’s always in trouble and doing bad things, he’s a rebel, and his family doesn’t discipline him but only by his teacher who makes him write lines after school on the black board and it doesn’t really help him. In the opening sequence when we see Bart’s school he is in detention writing out lines on the black board from there we can see that he is a bad boy and when he skates down the streets there are a lot of children who are exactly like this.
Characters who are not part of the family lie “Nelson Muntz” he’s in Lisa’s class and he is a typical bully who is normally hitting Bart or bullying other children. He is a stereotype because in every school or town you have a bully. He hangs around with a boy called “Jimbo Jones” and two other characters together they cause a lot of mischief. As always you have a group of bullies.
“Chief Wiggum” is a stereotype like Homer he is fat lazy and doesn’t do his job properly he is also very stupid (he is a police man). In one episode Bart is told to look after Maggie but while he is watching T.V she goes of with Homers car she zooms past chief Wiggum he’s eating a donut and drinking coffee he says “oh look there’s a baby driving a car, and look there’s a dog driving a bus” he doesn’t do anything about it. This shows how lazy he is and a stereotyped person.
The Simpsons is not to fit into a stereotype of a typical sitcom. We analyse the episode “The Simpsons Roasting on an open fire” in this episode we see that the Simpsons, although different to what we have previously seen on typical sitcoms, they do love each other at the end of the day. The family are stereotyped of a normal everyday family. They are not perfect and they do have many problems but they are a healthy family. They are individually stereotyped in their own ways.
Marge is a typical mother because like most housewives she is stuck at home with household domestics and looking after Maggie but she is more independent than other women in her position. Homer is very irresponsible he is clumsy and he is dumb. He is the father of the family he provides and cares for them but as we see Homer in the episodes he is shown to be really stupid but at the end of the day he does love, care and provide for the family. The children as a whole are very bright they have done a number of things for example Bart always catches out side-show Bob while he is planning something evil and Lisa helps her brother a lot she is very clever and saved her fathers life during a heart operation. The children do love their family and care for each other.