Who are the best Simpsons characters? Over the course of thirty years (has the animated series really been going on that long?) The Simpsons has introduced us to literally thousands of characters. Some are firm favourites. Others are forgettable duds who would have been better off doing a Poochie and heading back to their home planet.
Still, we thought it would be fun to sit down and work out a list of the best Simpsons characters. We’ve gone through all of the residents of Springfield, from Aaron A. Aaronson to Mr Zukowski, to bring you this exhaustive list from a catalogue of near countless yellow faces.
Now there are some out there who will say we’ve used this as an excuse to quote a bunch of our favourite episodes from one of the best TV series ever, and to you, we say, ‘yes’, that’s exactly what we’ve done. But honestly, who doesn’t love The Simpsons? So settle down with a frosty Duff beer (or a Buzz Cola if you’re driving) and enjoy our list of the best (Editor: the writer’s favourite) cartoon characters. Warning minor spoilers for one of the best animated series ever ahead.
Who are the best Simpsons characters?
- Milhouse Van Houten
- Ralph Wiggum
- Patty Bouvier
- Sideshow Bob
- Lionel Hutz
- Mr Burns
- Marge Simpson
- Homer Simpson
Milhouse Van Houten
Milhouse? That dud? Honestly, Milhouse is a great character and far funnier than Bart. True, he’s basically the butt of every joke, but honestly, if you grew up watching The Simpsons and ever thought you were a Bart, you were really a Milhouse. Sorry to break it to you.
Not Lenny! Yes, the best friend of Carl Carlson had to make this list because, as we all know, there’s a lot of buzz around Lenny. In all seriousness, Lenny’s one of those wonderful Simpsons characters who’s whatever the joke needs him to be.
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That’s how he can be the most eligible bachelor in town and a complete loser who eats beans alone in his shack. Only two things stay consistent about Lenny; his love for Carl, and the fact he’s not supposed to get pudding in his eye.
We choo-choo chose him! Ralph is one of The Simpson’s greatest comedic creations and is arguably one of the show’s most quotable characters. Not a day goes by on the internet without me seeing at least one Ralph-ism. I’m particularly fond of “Me fail English? That’s unpossible!”
Patty, the cruel older sister of Marge Simpson, may seem like an odd inclusion on this list. She’s not a silly character like Lenny or Ralph, but I’ve always found her rather endearing.
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There’s something refreshing about living your life unashamedly, and Patty isn’t afraid to be herself. Sure that means she can be rude to Homer and blunt with Marge, but in a world where you can be anything, Patty chooses to be herself, and that’s worth celebrating.
The Simpsons’ mortal enemy turned frenemy. Bob was up there for the first few seasons with Mr Burns as the show’s big bad. Over time the character’s been softened. Though a recent Halloween special that had him murder Bart repeatedly was pretty disturbing, he was a top-tier character in the golden years.
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Pretentious and snobby, there was nothing better than watching this supposed genius be outwitted time and time again by an underachieving ten-year-old. Bob also gave us one of the show’s finest moments in Cape Fear when he repeatedly steps on the rake. It’s a joke that just gets better every time you watch it.
Who else should we put on this list? Oh… let’s say… Moe. The owner of the local tavern and a contender for Homer’s real best friend, Moe, is a stupid moron with an ugly face and a big butt, and his butt smells, and he likes to kiss his own butt.
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Aside from that, what makes Moe such a great character is how unlikeable he truly is. He’s surly, rude, and ugly inside and out. Yet despite that, there’s a humanity to Moe, he desperately wants to be loved, and there are hints that under his hideous exterior, there’s a decent guy trying to get out. Also, he occasionally robs people now.
Lionel Hutz was an iconic Simpsons character and a personal favourite. A skeevy ambulance chaser, every time we thought Lutz had reached rock bottom, he managed to bore even deeper into a pit of depravity.
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It helps he was voiced by one of the most talented comedic actors of his time Phil Hartman. Hartman’s death and the subsequent retirement of the characters he voiced was a tragedy that the show never really recovered from.
Burns made the list? Excellent. The closest thing The Simpsons has to a bad guy, Mr Burns is a delight whenever he’s on screen. He’s both tremendously funny – I’m a sucker for an anachronistic reference – and surprisingly frightening.
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Whether he’s being mugged by an ant or blotting out the sun, the sheer anarchy Mr Burns brings to the screen makes him a joy to watch, and you can see the impact the character had on other animated series like Bob’s Burger’s Mr Fischoeder.
Homer and Bart get all the best lines in The Simpsons, but Marge is the show’s beating heart. As clownish as things get, she grounds the show in something approaching reality.
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Sure, you can call her a stick in the mud. Still, ultimately without Marge, The Simpsons would have jumped the shark (probably literally) long before its original golden age ended.
It might be cliché to put Homer in the top spot, but he is the best character in the show. Homer’s a short-tempered, boorish oaf but also a loving father and husband.
So unlike Marge, he gets the best of both worlds. He’s funny and quotable, but you remember his more tender, sympathetic moments as well.
And that’s it. If you’re looking for more of our favourite fictional people, check out our guide to the best Naruto characters or our list of the best One Piece characters and Demon Slayer characters.
Or, for upcoming releases, here are the new movies heading our way in 2023. You want more? OK then, here’s our guide to the best movies of all time.