It’s always fun to think about what might be ahead in life. Predicting things is always a great way to kill time and have a spirited conversation. There are no limits to what the brain can imagine when there is nothing stopping the thought process. This doesn’t just happen when talking to friends though. It happens quite often on TV, in movies and books. One place we don’t really expect it to happen though. is in cartoons.
The Simpsons have been making bold predictions in the show since they aired the very first episode. At the time of initial airing, the things we saw were funny and a lot of them were unthinkable. Now that we look back though, there is actually an amazing number of those predictions that have come true. A couple of the most amazing ones are predicting the current president and well as the prediction of the SmartWatch.
Today we shall look at a number of those predictions that actually came true in real life and a bunch that didn’t. The ones that didn’t come to fruition… well, we can be glad about most of those. Read on and you’ll see why.
20 Predicted Right - The Rolling Stones Are Still Playing
In the episode called Lisa’s Wedding that aired back in 1995, her future husband put a poster on his wall depicting a 2010 Rolling Stones tour. It was hilariously called “The Steel Wheelchair Tour.” If they only knew how far off they were with that prediction. They were right in terms of the band still playing but who could have dreamed that in 2018 they would still be going. You can’t say they are still going strong, but they are still going none-the-less!
This is one of the amazing things that the show said would happen and came true!
19 Predicted Wrong – The Cryogenic In-And-Out Procedure
There was an episode that aired that had Mr. Burns affected by seventeen wounds. Love him or hate him, it’s a situation you wouldn’t want to see Homer’s boss in. During the episode, Mr. Burns seeks treatment in a cryogenic freeze facility. The episode depicts him of entering, being healed, and then recovering.
There is always a lot of talk about the freezing process on television but this practice isn’t even advanced enough to be an option for anything yet, let alone using it for hospital-like purposes. It will be a very cool thing though if it ever gets that far advanced.
18 Predicted Right - Europe Trying To Drop Greece
In a 2012 episode called Politically Inept, With Homer Simpson, the lovable father is being interviewed on television. While the interview is being aired, the news ticker at the bottom of the screen scrolls across saying “Europe puts Greece on eBay.” They obviously knew something that the world wasn’t yet aware of.
Just a few years later Greece was facing financial disaster and controlled the news headlines for a couple of months. It’s another case of The Simpsons making what seemed like a far-fetched prediction and seeing it come true. It’s really amazing how many times this has happened.
17 Predicted Wrong - FOX Turning To Adult Entertainment
There was an episode of The Simpsons where they talked about FOX changing their programming to that of the adult entertainment kind. It was a hilarious prediction that didn’t come true but that doesn’t mean that the network hasn’t gone through several other changes since then.
If you turn on the TV now you’ll find several channels that are affiliated with FOX. FX, FXX and FOX News are just a few of what you’ll find on the tube now. However, there is no sign of the channel that was predicted on that show long ago. But we don’t know what is discussed behind closed doors at the FOX studios, so who knows!
16 Predicted Right – The Finding Of A Three-Eyed Fish
Back in 1990, there was an episode of The Simpsons that aired which showed Bart going fishing. What he pulled from the local river was both scary and funny when he hooked a three-eyed fish. This was blamed on the local nuclear power plant that was run by Mr. Burns. It’s certain that the writers had no idea this kind of fish would actually be found one day in real life.
In 2011 a fish was found that looks exactly like the one depicted in the cartoon show. It was discovered in a reservoir in Argentina… wait for it… near a nuclear power plant!
15 Predicted Wrong - Sponsored Education
This is one thing that the show depicted as happening in the future that unfortunately didn’t come true, yet. When some of the bigger companies in the country are looking for the next big wave they can put their name on, education still sits there, underfunded. The show had Pepsi as a sponsor and if you think about it, it makes perfect sense.
The companies get their name in more places and they can end the school supply shortcomings that take place in every community in our country. It’s a perfect fit so let’s see which company steps up first and turns this one into a correct prediction.
14 Predicted Right – Fixed Election Machines
In 2008 The Simpsons aired an episode that had voters having their votes changed by changed by machine. Just four years later, people complained about that exact thing happening. Maybe someone saw the episode and a lightbulb went on inside their head.
That was only the beginning though, as every election since has had people complaining about false voting for one side or the other. The show really nailed this one and maybe they can be blamed for all of the issues that have come about since that episode aired?
13 Predicted Wrong - Jim Carrey Making 40 Classic Movies
An episode of The Simpsons aired one time that showed actor Jim Carrey being a star of forty classic movies. This one could not have been more wrong as you have to really stretch to make the real number reach four.
He’s a good actor but he didn’t choose his roles very wisely. He made Ace Ventura, Dumb and Dumber, Bruce Almighty,Ace Ventura 2: When Nature Calls and many others. The mentioned are good but far from classics. They’re what he probably puts on his highlight reels because they are his best pieces of work. Now you know what I mean when I said reaching four would be a stretch.
12 Predicted Right – Tigers Have Had Enough
Some things on The Simpsons have come true that we didn’t really want to. It’s always funny when a cartoon characterizes some kind of tragic event because everyone knows it’s a joke. However, when it comes true in real life, there is nothing funny about it at all.
In 1993 (Season 5, Episode 10: $pringfield, the show depicted a lion-tamer spoof on the Siegfried and Roy show. In the episode they were attacked by the tiger they were doing a show with and ten years later it happened in real life when Roy Horn was left partially paralyzed after the exact event took place.
11 Predicted Wrong – All News Channels Consolidating
The Simpsons have long been known to poke fun at not only other networks but their own as well. This is a practice that has taken place on FOX shows all the way back to the Married… With Children days.
One of the things discussed on the show was the fact that there are so many news channels, it was inevitable that they would all combine into one big network. The show depicted a channel of “CNNBCBS, A Division of ABC.”
While this hasn’t actually happened it certainly feels like it could have. All of the news channels seem to have the exact same non-newsworthy news nowadays.
10 Predicted Right - The 2013 Horse Burger Scandal
In a 1994 episode of The Simpsons, it was exposed that Springfield Elementary School was keeping a huge secret from the public. The school had stopped using beef in the cafeteria and had substituted it with horse meat.
Once again the episode just might have been the idea-giver to someone to actually carry this out. In 2013 a huge scandal broke out all across Europe as horse meat was found in the UK, the Republic of Ireland, France, Norway, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, Germany, and the Netherlands. It’s reported that the scandal didn’t affect the United States but it certainly gives you something to think about.
9 Predicted Wrong - Big Ben Would Be Turned Into A Digital Clock
There was an episode of The Simpsons that showed London’s famous Big Ben clock tower showing everyone the time in digital numbers. It was both odd and funny at the same time because it looked so weird compared to the actual clock that we all know and love.
You just never know what will happen in the world these days but this one seems like it’s not something that is going to happen any time soon. The British are very high on tradition and this probably isn’t one that they are going to change. Not in the near future anyway.
8 Predicted Right - Donald
In the Season 11, Episode 17 called Bart to the Future, the show accurately predicted the USA's current leadership. It aired in 2000 and it shows a female leader, who looks very similar to Hilary, telling her advisors “As you know, we’ve inherited quite a budget crunch...”, referring to what's left behind from DT.
One of the show writers, Dan Greaney, said in a 2016 interview, “That just seemed like the logical last stop before hitting bottom. It was pitched because it was consistent with the vision of America going insane.” Sixteen years previous to the actual event it appeared in a cartoon. That’s what’s insane!
7 Predicted Wrong - WWIII
There was a fake reality television show on The Simpsons that was called Last Ally Standing. The Brits are one of the finalists on the show and it prompted Hugh to remind Moe that it was the British who came in and saved the United States during WWIII.
Luckily this is another one that hasn’t come true as of yet and we are all keeping our fingers crossed that it stays that way for a very long time. The show has made an amazing amount of predictions that have come true and I’m sure we are all perfectly fine with this not being one of them.
6 Predicted Right – Auto Correct And iPhone
In the Season 6, Episode 8 called Lisa on Ice, the show has Lisa trying to text message someone on her “Newton” phone. She writes “Beat up Martin” but the phone sends the message saying “Eat up Martha.” This error was on the show in 1994 and who would have known that this would become an actual real problem in 2007.
There are many reports that say a lot of Apple executives referred to this episode many times while creating the iPhone. They were scared that they weren’t going to be able to get the keyboard proper. It turns out that their fears were for good reason as autocorrect is still a major problem to this day.
5 Predicted Wrong – Control Room Operators Don’t Work Alone
If you have watched a few episodes of The Simpsons you have probably seen Homer at his job, as a control room operator at the local nuclear power plant. His favorite position is relaxing and leaning back with his feet up on the control board. This wasn’t possible when it first started to be shown and it isn’t possible today.
In accordance with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission “A supervisor, along with a second supervisor or reactor operator must be present at all times during reactor operation.” Every person in the room is also supposed to be licensed by the NRC and I’m fairly certain Homer wouldn’t pass that test. It’s fun to watch though!
4 Predicted Right – Disney Taking Over 21st Century Fox
In 1998, during Season 10, there was Episode 5 called When You Dish Upon A Star, and it contained another bold prediction made by The Simpsons writers. There was an advertisement on the side of a building that showed the 20th Century Fox logo, but it had an added twist. Underneath it, the sign read: “A Division of Walt Disney Co.”
Nineteen years later it came true when Disney officially bought a very good portion of 21st Century Fox’s assets for an amazing $52.4 billion. There are reports that the deal was actually valued closer to sixty-six billion.
3 Predicted Wrong - Fuel Rods Are Still Not Used As Paper Weights
In countless episodes of The Simpsons, you can see Homer at work, at his desk, with a green glowing fuel rod on his desk being used as a paperweight. He even picks it up and tosses it around sometimes. Obviously, this isn’t accurate and it never will be.
Any type of nuclear material is touched with only the highest of care and never with bare hands. While it might be fun to include in the show, if they are trying to predict another thing for the future, this one falls far short of becoming a reality at any point.
2 Predicted Right – The SmartWatch
This was one prediction that the show almost nailed to the exact year - in the 1995 Season 6, Episode 19 episode called Lisa’s Wedding. When she visited a fortune teller the audience was shot into the future, to 2010 to be exact.
During that time people had voice-enabled watches that were exactly the same as smartwatches are today. They said it would happen in 2010 and they weren’t off by that much at all. The first one was shown to the real world in 2014.
1 Predicted Wrong - Nuclear Waste Is Not Always Stored Safely
If you watch a few episodes of The Simpsons you’ll notice that their hometown of Springfield has nuclear waste inappropriately stored and dumped all over the town. It’s funny to see it dumped into the sea, the local pond, under and onto playgrounds and even poured into trees. However, if this was done in the real world a lot of us would be dead or at the very least very sick.
This is never done in real life and it never will be. While it’s very funny to watch on a television cartoon, there would be deadly repercussions if it were done in the real world.