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7 February 2011
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The Simpsons

Guest appearances: Over the years, many celebrities have appeared on the Simpsons. Famous faces have included Tom Jones, David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, Ringo Starr, Buzz Aldrin, Leonard Nimoy and Elizabeth Taylor as the voice of Maggie.

Name game: Besides naming the Simpsons after his own family, Matt Groening has named may of the minor characters after streets in Portland, Oregon. The signs for N.E. Flanders Street get vandalised quite a bit...

Maggie sucks: The noise of Maggie sucking her dummy was recorded by Matt Groening himself.

Ex-Cel-ent: Each episode of the Simpsons contains about twenty-four thousand individual drawings, or Cels. An episode takes about six months to produce, and costs a million dollars.

Talented, No Doubt: Eric Stefani was a keyboard player for the American band, No Doubt (and brother to the lead singer, Gwen). Disillusioned with their record company, he left in 1994 - to become an animator on the Simpsons. No Doubt hit the big time the following year.

Happy Happy Birthday Birthday: Lisa has had her eighth birthday shown on the series - twice!

Never the same: Each episode has a slightly different opening title sequence - Bart writes different things on the blackboard, and something strange happens as the family sit on the sofa.

Gruesome twosome: Marge's sisters Patty and Selma are pretty hard to tell apart. Selma has oval beads on her necklace, and a parting, and round earrings. Patty has round beads, no parting and triangular earrings. Patty loves MacGyver. Selma loves getting married.

Presidential candidate: Bart's best friend Millhouse is named after President Richard Millhous Nixon.

Animal House: The Simpsons pets are Santa's Little Helper, a greyhound rescued from the dog track, and a cat, Snowball II. Snowball I died in tragic circumstances - it got run over.

Who Shot Mr. Burns?: Maggie.

Find out about Matt Groening and the history of the Simpsons in our Introduction >

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