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The Simpsons Season 1 Episodes

13 Episodes 1989 - 1990

FOX's landmark animated comedy began in December 1989 with the episode "Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire," in which family patriarch Homer deals with a Christmas in which he's too poor to buy presents by adopting a canine from the local dog-racing track named Santa's Little Helper. While the show was a phenomenon almost from the get-go (with the face of 10-year-old hell-raiser and initial breakout character Bart Simpson appearing on just about every form of merchandise imaginable), few could have predicted then that "The Simpsons" would become a cultural institution, running for over two decades and defining the comedic sensibilities of a generation. In the first season, the animation was noticeably cruder and some of the voice actors were still figuring out their characters (Dan Castellaneta stated that he based Homer's voice in the early going on Walter Matthau), but the show still excelled at telling small-scale stories about a lower-middle-class family trying to get by: Homer gets fired from his job at the nuclear power plant and tries to get rehired, Bart deals with a bully and Lisa befriends a jazz saxophonist who helps cure her depression. In time, "The Simpsons" would evolve into nothing less than an elaborate satire of every aspect of American life in the late-20th century, with jokes that ranged from highbrow literary references to humor so stupid it was almost zen; here at the very beginning, it was simply an idiosyncratic show that was equal parts hilarious and heartwarming.

Episode 1

Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire

Sun, Dec 17, 1989 30 mins

Homer's Christmas bonus is canceled and the rainy-day funds are needed to pay for Bart's tattoo removal in the first full-length episode of the subversive animated satire about Springfield's hapless first family.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 1 image

Episode 2

Bart the Genius

Sun, Jan 14, 1990 30 mins

Bart's labeled a genius and sent to a school for the gifted.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 2 image

Episode 3

Homer's Odyssey

Sun, Jan 21, 1990 30 mins

After being fired from the nuclear power plant for negligence, Homer becomes a safety activist. Voices include Dan Castellaneta, Nancy Cartwright, Harry Shearer, Pamela Hayden, Marcia Wallace, Julie Kavner, Yeardley Smith.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 3 image

Episode 4

There's No Disgrace like Home

Sun, Jan 28, 1990 30 mins

After seeing families being nice to each other at a company picnic, Homer orders the Simpsons to a family therapist. Voices: Maggie Roswell, Hank Azaria, Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Harry Shearer, Nancy Cartwright.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 4 image

Episode 5

Bart the General

Sun, Feb 4, 1990 30 mins

Terrorized by the school bully, Bart seeks counsel from Grandpa Simpson, who takes him to a warfare expert for basic training. Nancy Cartwright, Harry Shearer, Yeardley Smith, Dan Castellaneta.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 5 image

Episode 6

Moaning Lisa

Sun, Feb 11, 1990 30 mins

The meaning of life and second grade have Lisa playing the blues solo---until she jams with a kindred spirit; Homer seeks tutelage to beat Bart at video boxing.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 6 image

Episode 7

Call of the Simpsons

Sun, Feb 18, 1990 30 mins

The Simpsons put the wild back in the wilderness when their RV goes over a cliff and Homer and Bart go for help, get lost and lose their clothes. Voice of RV Salesman: Albert Brooks. Other voices include Dan Castellaneta, Yeardley Smith, Julie Kavner, Nancy Cartwright.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 7 image

Episode 8

The Telltale Head

Sun, Feb 25, 1990 30 mins

Bart pulls a stunt that shocks the entire town, including the new friends he was trying to impress. Voices include Nancy Cartwright, Dan Castellaneta, Harry Shearer, Yeardley Smith, Hank Azaria, Pamela Hayden.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 8 image

Episode 9

Life on the Fast Lane

Sun, Mar 18, 1990 30 mins

Homer's bowling-ball gift "for Marge" prompts her to take up the sport---and maybe also a handsome instructor who offers to teach her "many things."

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 9 image

Episode 10

Homer's Night Out

Sun, Mar 25, 1990 30 mins

Shutterbug Bart captures Homer with a sexy entertainer at a bachelor party.

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Episode 11

The Crepes of Wrath

Sun, Apr 15, 1990 30 mins

A little story about how Bart saves France after blowing up Principal Skinner's mom with a cherry bomb.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 11 image

Episode 12

Krusty Gets Busted

Sun, Apr 29, 1990 30 mins

Bart's TV hero Krusty the Clown is arrested for a convenience-store robbery, and witness Homer must testify against the clown.

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 12 image

Episode 13

Some Enchanted Evening

Sun, May 13, 1990 30 mins

Homer takes Marge out for a romantic night, leaving the kids with a sitter---who's profiled on "America's Most Armed and Dangerous."

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The Simpsons, Season 1 Episode 13 image