Papal Praise for Homer Simpson

The Vatican’s official newspaper L’Osservatore Romano yesterday congratulated The Simpsons on its 20th anniversary, praising the shows philosophical leanings as well as its stinging and often irreverent take on religion.

In an article titled “Aristotle’s Virtues and Homer’s Doughnut” a number of religion-themed episodes are mentioned, including one in which Homer calls for divine intervention by crying: “I’m not normally a religious man, but if you’re up there, save me, Superman!”

Homer’s religious confusion is “a mirror of the indifference and the need that modern man feels toward faith.” The paper says: “Homer finds in God his last refuge, even though he sometimes gets His name sensationally wrong.” But L’Osservatore Romano is persuaded that “these are just minor mistakes (because) the two know each other well.”

Schools of Rock

Rachel Maddow uses the “soporific” version of Night Before Christmas read by the “Senator from Blagojevich” in Congress yesterday as the set up for a piece featuring two rival high schools in Seattle with competing musical videos.