Simpsons Most Talkative Characters

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The first episode of The Simpsons was aired on 17 December 1989: titled “Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire”. It wasn’t meant to be the series debut, but due to animation issues with the intended instalment – Some Enchanted Evening – they were forced to kick the show off in an unusual manner with a Christmas special. It was an instant hit and, 725 episodes and a feature length film later, the show is still on the air – though many fans maintain that the show’s quality has been on a steep decline since its tenth season.

The scripts of the first 26 seasons have been released as a dataset, allowing the show to be dissected and analysed in ways previously impossible. For example only three of the top twenty characters with the most lines in the show are female.

The average Simpsons character’s dialogue can be understood by a 12 year old, represented as a 6.3 on the Dale-Chall readability scale. The Simpsons family itself could be understood by the average American 11 year old – which makes sense as they speak the most lines and the show aimed to have the widest appeal possible. Only a handful of characters had a Dale-Chall score above 7, meaning that their dialogue requires the literacy of a 15 year old: news reader Kent Brockman, Mayor Quimby and actor Troy McClure. Surprisingly two of the show’s most intellectual characters were not among this higher echelon: Professor Frink and Sideshow Bob. Although Frink was close with a score of 6.9.

The data also reveals that every episode has at least one unique speaking character and scene location, a testament to The Simpson’s never ending originality.

Document start stop The first episode of The Simpsons was aired on 17 December 1989: titled “Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire”. It wasn’t meant to be the series debut, but due to animation issues with the intended instalment – Some Enchanted Evening – they were forced to kick the show off in an unusual…

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