Apparently the Vatican either has not seen the roughly 300 episodes of “The Simpsons” in which Homer tries to strangle Bart or the Pope has a much better sense of humor than anyone gave him credit for. An article in a Vatican newspaper over the weekend announced that the Simpson family (whom I’m pretty sure I’ve seen attending Protestant church services all these years) is actually Catholic, and therefore it’s OK to let your kids watch them.
It’s not clear to me how the newspaper came to this conclusion. I’m sure you could write an entire thesis on how the Simpsons correlate to traditional Catholic behavior … though you could probably make a pretty convincing argument for Bart as atheist as well.
It’s the second time within a year that the Vatican has praised Fox’s off-the-wall cartoon, about a slobby nuclear plant worker and his dysfunctional but ultimately loving family. Last year Osservatore Romano described the show in complimentary terms, noting that it sometimes can even be theological.
I’m holding my breath to hear what the Vatican thinks of “Family Guy” and “American Dad” – somehow I doubt the “Simpsons’” fellow cartoons would be endorsed.