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SATURDAY SIX: 6 MORE Times that The Simpsons Referenced Disney and Universal

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This week’s SATURDAY SIX takes a look at 6 MORE times that The Simpsons referenced Disney and Universal! After doing this fine blog series for almost seven years, we would have a hard time ranking our favorite editions of “The 6.” We’d have to include the Theme Park Turkeys of the Year Awards. An installment of “David and Derek” would be a must. The Special Investigation on Theme Park Photography, Disney Merchandise That Doesn’t Exist (but Should), and an edition of the Hall of Shame all deserve to be in. But believe it or not, one of our all-time favorite articles to do over the years was 6 Times THE SIMPSONS Totally Nailed Being a Theme Park Fan. We are huge fans of The Simpsons, and when the show skewers the theme park world it becomes even better. Now that The Simpsons are on Disney+, it’s time to do a follow up article on even more Disney references on the show, and maybe – just maybe – a Universal one too….

# 6 – From the Disney Vault

The Simpsons has been poking fun at Disney brands for 30 years, and some of the jabs have targeted old school Disney films, including Mary Poppins. One beloved episode has “Shary Bobbins” arriving into Springfield in order to nanny the Simpsons’ children and even her entrance parodies what we love in the Julie Andrews/Dick Van Dyke classic.

Shary Bobbins arrives in Springfield.

Shary gets caught up in some telephone wire…
…which spins her for a loop.

The Simpsons have also taken a crack at Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

# 5 – New Animated Classics

The Simpsons arrived on the TV scene just as Disney’s animated movies were making a resurgence thanks to Michael Eisner and Jeffrey Katzenberg. So it was no surprise that, at the time back in the ’90s, television viewers saw timely jabs at movies such as The Lion King and Little Mermaid. This tradition continued for the next 30 years to include send ups of more current Disney films such as Frozen, Planes, and Wall-E.

After Lisa’s mentor Bleeding Gums Murphy passed away, she spoke to him in the clouds, similar to how Simba talked to Mufasa in The Lion King.
As always, The Simpsons took the joke to the next level, and brought in Darth Vader (who, like Mufasa, was voiced by James Earl Jones) and then James Earl Jones himself!
Under the Sea parody.
Homer was eating the fish throughout the song.

Bart – dressed as Kristoff – throws a snowball at Lisa (Queen Elsa)
Lisa summons her powers….
…having ice form quickly out of the ground…
….creating a castle (note Bart hanging off the very top.)
Homer as Olaf.
Homer eats his carrot nose.
The house from Pixar’s Up.

In one episode, the family went to the Golden Globes as Bart was up for an award for his short film. There they met the team from the animation studio Mixar. This was playing fun with the company Pixar and several Pixar employees, including John Lasseter.

John Lasseter.

In an incredible moment, the Mixar team has composer Randy Newman sing a song called “You have an enemy,” sung to the tune of “You Got a Friend in Me” from Toy Story.

Randy Newman.
Pixar’s Luxo lamp shines on Lisa.
Wall-E and Mr. Potato Head parodies.

# 4 –  Lady and the Tramp

Of all the Disney films that The Simpsons has referenced over the years, none has made more appearances than Lady & the Tramp. The iconic spaghetti eating scene of Lady & the Tramp has been used on episodes decades apart.

Homer as Tramp and Marge as Lady.

The Simpson‘s dog Santa’s Little Helper had his moment.

Homer reenacts the “Lady & the Tramp” kissing scene while sharing a chili dog with Mindy.

Even ol’ Montgomery Burns had his Lady & the Tramp moment with a fun reveal.


# 3 – Couch Gag

The show opening “couch gag” is a staple for The Simpsons. Every single episode has a new joke, giving viewers a reason to not skip the opening credits. In season 27, the couch gag was done by animator Eric Goldberg. Disney fans would know Goldberg by his work in films such as Aladdin, Hercules, and Fantasia 2000. Goldberg’s Disney inspired couch gag started off in black and white, like the old timey Mickey Mouse shorts, and had Maggie dancing with the living room furniture.

The scene then transitions to Lisa coming out as Cinderella.

Next, we had Marge as Snow White.

The girls then meet Homer in a Jungle Book-inspired moment.

With Bart appearing like Mickey as the sorcerer’s apprentice in Fantasia.

# 2 – Hall of Vice Presidents

We like jokes about Disney films as much as anyone, but we LOVE jokes about the parks. In the past we’ve seen send-ups of Euro Disneyland, EPCOT, and even Soarin’, but more recently we got a quick look at some Disney attractions when the Simpson family took a vacation to Kissimmee. We start by getting a quick look of Disney building a Family Guy World, where in the background is the Astro Orbiter, Big Thunder Mountain, and Space Mountain.

Bart and I are going to engage in perhaps the most popular Florida tradition….complaining to the manager. – Homer Simpson

Instead of Disney, the Simpsons find themselves at the St. Nick Theme Park and Resort in Kissimmee. Here is where they go into the Hall of Vice Presidents, a wonderful parody of Disney’s Hall of Presidents.

Vice Presidents rule! – Bart Simpson

Note Aaron Burr with the pistol out.


# 1 – Flaming Moe from Universal

In an episode from season 29, Homer is convinced to give up drinking by Ned Flanders. However, bartender Moe soon takes the form of the devil to try and sway Homer back. In a wonderful moment, the devil offers Homer a drink in a cup evocative of the ones used for a Flaming Moe at the Universal theme parks.

Drink me! I’m the most overpriced thing at Universal studios! – The Devil

Flaming Moe. (photo by Brandon Glover)

While not technically a Universal reference, this past season The Simpsons did pay tribute to our favorite CityWalk venue Voodoo Doughnut.


Honorable Mention – Tombstones

Like Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Disney and Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights, every year The Simpsons has their own spooky tradition with the Treehouse of Horror episode. During the opening credits, The Simpsons writers throw in fun references to things like “Casper the friendly boy” and “American workmanship,” but there have also been some Disney related references….

So there you have it: Six More Times That THE SIMPSONS Referenced Disney and Universal! See you next weekend for the latest installment of the SATURDAY SIX, where we’ll look at something fun from the world of Disney and Universal. If you enjoyed yourself, be sure to check out The Magic, The Memories, and Merch! articles covering the latest from the Disney Outlet Stores. You can also follow Your Humble Author on Twitter (@derekburgan).

If you enjoyed this article, you will surely like the following: 

6 Times THE SIMPSONS Totally Nailed Being a “Theme Park Fan”

6 Reasons We Love Universal’s SPRINGFIELD USA

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Disney+

Special Thanks to The Elite Brandon Glover, the bio-est of all reconstructs @bioreconstruct, Captain Cruiseline Scott Sanders of the world famous Disney Cruise Line Blog, my personal protege Hunter “Elvey” Underwood, the SAT SIX Fun Squad of Parkscope Joe and Nick, hot shot Michael Carelli, and Hermione Granger’s tutor Megan Stump for their invaluable assistance with this article. The SAT SIX is inspired each week by goofballs Aengus Mackenzie and LitemAndHyde and you Potterheads will  enjoy Meg’s other blog work over at the Central Florida Slug Club.

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One thought on “SATURDAY SIX: 6 MORE Times that The Simpsons Referenced Disney and Universal

  • I would be great if this blog had the season/episode numbers along with episode names where each of these references occur. Anyone with Disney+ will be able to quickly find and watch them, but it would be really helpful to know exactly which ones we’re looking for.


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