This image has been making the rounds of the internet since The Simpsons official twitter account sent out a tweet yesterday, saying “Simpsons predicted it”. Several news sources have gone with the fun and interesting story, with headlines like Simpsons predicted Broncos-Seahawks Super Bowl in 2005. Sadly, that doesn’t come close to being true.
The image comes from a 2005 episode “The Bonfire of the Manatees”. In the episode, Homer becomes frustrated with his football bets, and eventually allows Fat Tony to use the Simpsons home to shoot pornographic movies in order to pay off his gambling bets. The Denver vs. Seattle game is actually the first game shown in the episode, and is supposed to be a regular season game. We know this because later in the same episode, Homer bets on an Oakland Raiders game. Additionally, the use of the Broncos seems to be a reference to an earlier, far superior episode. While it makes a nice story, Seattle and Denver have actually already played twice following the airing of this episode, in 2006 and 2010.
How impressive would it have been had the Simpsons had correctly predicted the Super Bowl? Well, there are 256 combinations for the Super Bowl, so if they had predicted a specific match up for a specific year, it would have been about a .3% chance, quite slim odds. However, the episode aired eight years ago and did not reference a specific game, bringing the odds up to around 3%.
Pop culture prediction hounds will have to admit defeat on this one, and just hold out hope that the Cubs defeat Miami in the World Series next year.
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