Anorak News | How The Two Dimensional Fat-Hating Labour Government Patronised Homer Simpson

How The Two Dimensional Fat-Hating Labour Government Patronised Homer Simpson

by | 4th, October 2009

simpsonsYOU want parody? The Department of Health is sponsoring The Simpsons TV show as part of its campaign to raise awareness of obesity.

The message is that you don’t need to be fat to become an internationally famous carton, but it might be better if you are.

Aardman Animations, creators of Wallace and Gromit, have recreated tableaus of Homer and his yellow family sat on the sofa at the beginning of each episode.

In once scene, the Simpsons plate of junk food is replaced with fruit and vegetables. The advert, which cost you £640,000, forms part of the Government’s Change4Life health campaign.

Lest you think it a waste of money, Gillian Merron, the public health minister, arrives to correct you:

“We are serious about tackling obesity and supporting people to improve their health, and always look for new and innovative ways of doing this with our target audience. The Simpsons are a much-loved, close-knit family facing some of the everyday challenges that modern-day families go through.”

Gillian… GIL-LI-AN! The Simpsons are a cartoon family. It’s not a documentary – it’s a cartoon created by people, some of whom might well be fat. She’s not listening:

“They provide a popular and engaging way to get the message to real-life families about simple ways of improving their diet and activity for a healthier lifestyle.”

Remember when The Simpsons was just a telly show that the producers wanted you to watch to make you laugh and that would make them rich? Then Tony Blair’s made a guest appearance and Ricky Gervais, who has made a career out of playing David Brent and people who are a bit like David Brent, wrote a slightly sub-standard episode.

Professor Gerard Hastings, director of the institute for social marketing at Stirling University, tells the Sunday Times:

“It is good that health is associated with something irreverent and fun instead of po-faced and worthy.”

Fun – like fat people used to be before the thin started to purse their lips and pity them?

“It is not what is said but who says it that matters and the fact that Homer and Bart Simpson are implicitly endorsing this message is really important. We all have within us a bit of the beer and doughnuts persona and, within reason, that is fine. It is about balance and moderation.”

No. it’s about saying your personality is “beer and donuts” and that a cartoon character can turn you onto greens.

Asks yourself this: If Homer Simpson had been drawn thin and made to eat his five a day, would the cartoon have been a hit?

Posted: 4th, October 2009 | In: Politicians Comment | TrackBack | Permalink